The Second Book of Nephi

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(This is an excerpt from the chapter "The Second Book of Nephi" in the book Verse by Verse: The Book of Mormon.)

Once you have entered the gate and are on the path, is that all there is to it? Have you done everything necessary? Of course not. Baptism allows you entrance into the kingdom of God, but there is more: receiving and obeying temple ordinances and covenants allows you entrance into the highest degree of the kingdom of God.

You have not even entered the gate and found yourself moving along the path except through the kindness and goodness of the Savior. Now you have to press forward, be firm and steadfast, develop hope and love for God and everyone else, feast on the Lord’s words, be a faithful laborer in his temple, and endure. Endure what? Whatever comes, through the end of this life. Then what is the promise? “Ye shall have eternal life.” And that is a promise that can be sealed or guaranteed by the Holy Spirit.

But, someone might ask, what if you slip off the path, or even intentionally deviate from it? Then recognize your error, make the course correction, repent and get back on the path, and move ahead. Knowing that we all slip—“all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)—the Savior has provided the way back, with full reward for anyone who comes back to him with full purpose of heart.

If you pay the price in time and effort to search the scriptures, you will see lasting benefits. “Whoso treasureth up my word, shall not be deceived” (Joseph Smith–Matthew 1:37), and “whoso would hearken unto the word of God, and would hold fast unto it, they would never perish; neither could the temptations and the fiery darts of the adversary overpower them” (1 Nephi 15:24).

Elder Bruce R. McConkie wrote: “May I suggest, based on personal experience, that faith comes and revelations are received as a direct result of scriptural study. . . . However talented men may be in administrative matters; however eloquent they may be in expressing their views; however learned they may be in worldly things—they will be denied the sweet whisperings of the Spirit that might have been theirs unless they pay the price of studying, pondering, and praying about the scriptures.”

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