Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Lessons from 2 Nephi 11:4

Dear Reader,

I love The Book of Mormon. It's true, it's good, and it will change your life in glorious ways that you can't possibly imagine. And being the person that I am, one of the things I love most, besides that plain and simple truths, are the vague mysteries that require some good quality pondering. One such mystery is presented in Second Nephi 11:4, which reads: "Behold, my soul delighteth in proving unto my people the truth of the coming of Christ; for, for this end hath the law of Moses been given; and all things which have been given of God from the beginning of the world, unto man, are the typifying of him [emphasis added]." (See also Alma 30:44.)

Now the part of this verse that interests me most is the part that says that all things typify Christ. To me, this means that everything in this world (or at least in nature, though everything in this world comes from nature at some point) contains an innate symbol that reminds us of Christ and His message. That's pretty huge, and if you're a person who delights on analyzing symbols like I am, you might even jump for joy.

Now, Gentle Reader, I suppose that you can imagine the sheer excitement that I get from trying to find types in everything I see. It has turned into a sort of delightful game that I indulge myself in from time to time, especially when I am required to do something that I don't like.

Take, for example, the simple process that each of us goes through every day by sleeping and waking up. If you think of this process as a symbol of Christ's death and resurrection, there is all of a sudden a boundless meaning in a menial thing. In fact, I have found that if you look hard enough, everyday things can turn suddenly into something strangely wonderful.

Of course, when things are left up to the interpretation of the individual, there is always the danger that some wrong conclusions have been made. This is evident by the countless times in which the scriptures themselves have been twisted to fit the warped mind of someone who is seeking to justify their sins instead of seeking to be taught (and rebuked) at the feet of the prophets. It seems that these kinds of things are inevitable as long as Satan continues to be determined to ruin everything good in this world, but it is because of this sort of confusion that we have the Holy Ghost in the first place. In my experience, as long as you trust the Spirit and align yourself with the core doctrines of the Church, you're good. No worries.

And luckily enough for us, we don't have to do all of the analyzing ourselves, as it appears throughout all of the standard works. Paul's analogy of the body of Christ and Christ's own multitude of parables are fine examples, and Isaiah is practically dripping with symbolism. It's positively delicious.

Of course, I realize that the way in which I have chosen to apply the scriptures in this manner always carries with it the risk that it will lead me closer to that fine line between quirky and strange; after all, most people don't look at a can of tuna and see Christ in the tomb. But I'll take that risk, because for me, finding truth in the small things of life helps make life bearable.

Regards, best wishes, and meaning,

-Cecily Jane


Norm said...

Very interesting perspective. I kind of like the thought of trying to find a type of the Savior in everything we see. Thanks for sharing another way to bring Jesus into our daily lives.

Your Dad

Cecily Jane said...

Thanks for reading, Dad!