Sticking to looking for principles and doctrine, this will actually be a short and sweet post.
Verse 16: “the river of which he spake; and the depths thereof are the depths of hell.” I think this is pretty self explanatory.
Verse 17: “the mists of darkness are the temptations of the devil, which blindeth the eyes, and hardeneth the hearts of the children of men, and leadeth them away into broad roads, that they perish and are lost.” Not far off the straight and narrow path are the mists of darkness and sometimes this mist covers the path, which is why we must hold onto the rod of iron. If we let go of that rod, we can become so easily lost. Again, those mists are “temptations of the devil.” These temptations can blind us and harden our hearts. I know that is not something that I want in my life. I want to know that I am living life just as righteously as I can. If I let go of the rod of iron (the word of God) then I can easily become blinded and lost wandering around a broad road that I’m certain will lead to the great and spacious building or to the filthy river.
Verse 18: “the large and spacious building, which thy father saw, is vain imaginations and the pride of the children of men.” So, what are vain imaginations? In an address titled “Drowning in the Self: Vain Imaginations and the Great and Spacious Building” Brother Gerald Edwin Hansen III states: “The addition of vain imaginations is often overlooked. But vain imaginations, the narcissistic imaginings by which a person inflates his or her self-worth, are what lead men to the pride more often identified with the great and spacious building.” I find his description something to ponder on. Please go and read his talk, he has great insight and a lot of great examples https://rsc.byu.edu/archived/selections-2007-religious-education-student-symposium/literary-criticism/drowning-self-vain
Verse 21: the seed of Nephi went fourth upon the land in multitudes and he saw “wars and rumors of wars among them.” If you have read or are reading *spoiler alert* the Book of Mormon, there are wars and rumors of wars in further chapters. Nephi is being shown what is to be, and unfortunately, this means his seed going to battle.
Verse 23: “they had dwindled in unbelief they became a dark, and loathsome, and a filthy people, full of idleness and all manner of abominations.” If we look around our surroundings today or if we flip through channels or the television or if we accidentally click the wrong thing while working on the computer, we can see that the people of our generation are a dark and loathsome and filthy people. We can see idleness and all manner of abominations. Our society, our world needs the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. We, as His disciples, need to be sharing this gospel and pray for our family, friends, neighbors and nations. Our world is falling apart and we know from things that Lehi and Nephi have seen that those people that are not grasping on to the rod of iron will dwindle away and wander into the great and spacious building or fall into the filthy river. Reach out to those that you can, and pray for those that you can’t quite reach.
I know that Jesus Christ is the head of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and I know that this is the restored gospel here on this earth today. I am so very grateful to be a part of it and to share my insights with anyone who chooses to read. I pray that you will come to know for yourself that this Church is the one and only true Church on the earth today and that through Jesus Christ is the only way that we can return to live with Him and our Heavenly Father after our time here on earth is through.
I write this in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.