Saturday, December 10, 2011

Awake and Arise

Ephesians 5:14. Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light.

Romans 13:11 And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.

2Nephi 1:13. O that ye would awake; awake from a deep sleep, yea, even from the sleep of hell, and shake off the awful chains by which ye are bound, which are the chains which bind the children of men, that they are carried away captive down to the eternal gulf of misery and woe.

Alma 5:7 Behold, he changed their hearts; yea, he awakened them out of a deep sleep, and they awoke unto God. Behold, they were in the midst of darkness; nevertheless, their souls were illuminated by the light of the everlasting word; yea, they were encircled about by the bands of death, and the chains of hell, and an everlasting destruction did await them.  

Awake from a deep sleep. Not necessarily from physical sleep.  Since few people can read the scriptures while sleeping, the call in scriptures to awake must extend and refer to something else.  But the idea of waking up is something everyone can relate to at one level or another. So it's a intriguing way to teach a concept.  It's as though we are in a blinding trance, have forgotten everything, and are unable to "see" or interpret the world outside of the dream we find ourselves in.  And often times some even fight to remain in the dream and fight to preserve the illusion because it has become so comfortable.   

Hence we are to "come to".  As in someone regaining consciousness "comes to".   But we are to "Come to Christ".  He shall then give us light as Ephesians says.  It's true.      

This awakening I read about is describing something real, it's not just some metaphor, or a reference to a vague symbolic concept.  I can attest to this awakening, and although unpleasant at times, it's real, it does bring light, and it brings joy.  It's not limited to new awareness, but an actual enlightenment of the mind and soul.  

For me as I look back, had someone told me I was asleep I wouldn't have believed them, and would have thought them odd.  Now I look forward to being told I"m asleep because each degree of waking up has been such a good thing.  The scriptures that talk about awakening almost immediately then refer to "arising" or increasing in light, or a new level.

As to Arise, arise means "to ascend, or move to a higher place…" Arise is a state of being or becoming.  "Awake and arise and go forth to meet the Bridegroom; behold and lo, the Bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Prepare yourselves for the great day of the Lord." (D&C 133:1)

Found the following quote especially good and relevant.  It's from the "Mission of Elijah Reconsidered" paper I've quoted the last few posts:
"We must be reminded relentlessly that the condition we find ourselves in is one where it is absolutely necessary to awake and arise, shake off the dust,and, get out of the slumber you are in. There are those who have awakened only to find themselves in a nightmare of their own making because the reaction to awakening is violent. Don‘t fear that. You will get over it. You will find God is eager to help once you‘ve awakened. He has not left you here alone. He will always comfort you. In the proper circumstances, and after your awakening has proceeded to the proper point, He will personally comfort you. He will also introduce you to the Father, and they will take up their abode with you, just as they did with Joseph Smith."

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