Sunday, July 25, 2010

Mormon 9:20 Miracles and the God in Whom We Should Trust

Mormon 9:20 says

And the reason why he ceaseth to do miracles among the children of men is because that they dwindle in unbelief, and depart from the right way, and know not the God in whom they should trust.

In case any of us were wondering, here Mormon tells us about as clearly as is possible why miracles stop. Dwindle, what a good word. The dictionary defines dwindle as:
1. To become smaller and smaller; shrink; waste away.
2. To fall away, as in quality

Doesn't take an English Scholar to realize Moroni is saying that folks are wasting away in unbelief. Wasting away..... like parts of us are disintegrating and wasting away, just like the word implies. What would cause that? Ive heard that phrase used many times in reference to the body not getting enough nourishment, it's "wasting away". More on this next paragraph.

Dwindle also in this verse seems like a correct belief is shrinking, hence it becomes unbelief. The amount of light is shrinking, it's getting smaller. Restored truths get lost. Manuals get smaller. People forget about or never talk about important truths, they start relying on others, relying on people they shouldn't for salvation. Neglecting restored truths leads to darkening of the mind. D&C 84:54–57.) Nothing wrong with basics, but how fun is to be limited to baby food, or milk only, and have no initiative to gather food for a persons growing faith and needs? Pretty soon a basic only diet would make everything else taste uncomfortable, almost unable to be digested.

Anyway then Moroni says miracles cease because of departing from the "right way". So, taking a departing flight somewhere other than the correct destination. A pseudo paradise which will always be among the alluring destinations up for purchase. But the best phrase and the one I actually wanted to say something about was the last part. "And know not the God in whom they should trust" He says "They" so he doesn't include himself in the "miracle-less" group. Not knowing the God in whom to trust he says is a direct cause. Apparently there are folks claiming to follow God but in reality don't know the God in whom they are supposed to trust. Obviously that is a problem. A false God. Some definitions of Repentance that I quite like are "Re-turning to God" or "Returning or gaining a correct understanding of God and ourselves" "A correct view of God" "To turn around" "Stop the incorrect, and then pursue the correct course" And since all of us need repentance, we should be aware that Moroni is probably helping us to identify a false God(s) in our lives. In that case this guy deserves our love and gratitude I think. Repentance is a positive thing that the scriptures say will bring God's miracles.

A false idea about God or ourselves obviously is a sure fire way to make miracles cease. But Moroni, knowing his audience, is not speaking to people who aren't going to read his book. So who is he talking to? Well that's not that difficult of a question.

Having facts and data "about" the God in whom they should trust is different than knowing that same Being. Not knowing someone seems pretty simple, it's like they have never met. They may know facts and history and have heard other peoples testimony, but that is different than "receiving the testimony of Jesus". (D&C 76: 51, 74, 82, 101). D&C 93 verse 1 lets us know God is available. No one need let another stand in between. (1 Tim. 2: 5)

No wonder dwindling in unbelief leads to a lack of miracles. Gaining light is what the scriptures say is the good stuff, (D&C 50: 24), dwindling? Wasting away?... not a good path to be on. The perfect day is the result of the first way. I hope to say things that have light.

A few thoughts.


  1. Wow. Great stuff. Can I borrow some of your ideas? Thanks for this Tay. I'm again reminded of how perspective determines action.

  2. Exactly. How important is it to have correct perspective? I like how you connected perspective to action. Since Moroni is a messenger from the Lord, saw our day in vision, I believe his perspective is one we should look into, as opposed to putting our perspective onto his words, which I think gets commonly done.

    Thanks for the comment Rachel.