So, I came across another talk I gave in church. This one was back in 2010 too. Again, while we were March Branch.

Hymns 130
Be thou humble in thy weakness, and the Lord thy God shall lead thee,
Shall lead thee by the hand and give thee answer to thy prayers.
Be thou humble in thy pleading, and the Lord thy God shall bless thee,
Shall bless thee with a sweet and calm assurance that he cares.
Doctrine & Covenants 112:10
10 Be thou humble; and the Lord thy God shall lead thee by the hand, and give thee answer to thy prayers.
Doctrine & Covenants 1:28
28 And inasmuch as they were humble they might be made strong, and blessed from on high, and receive knowledge from time to time.
Ether 12:27
27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

In keeping with the theme of the month, my talk today is going to be based on Ether 12:27

What brought about the Lords answer in this verse?

The answer is brought about by the statement of Moroni being weak in writing and the fear of mockery.

We read this in verses 23 – 25 of the same chapter:

Ether 12:23-25
23 And I said unto him: Lord, the Gentiles will mock at these things, because of our weakness in writing; for Lord thou hast made us mighty in word by faith, but thou hast not made us mighty in writing; for thou hast made all this people that they could speak much, because of the Holy Ghost which thou hast given them;
24 And thou hast made us that we could write but little, because of the awkwardness of our hands. Behold, thou hast not made us mighty in writing like unto the brother of Jared, for thou madest him that the things which he wrote were mighty even as thou art, unto the overpowering of man to read them.
25 Thou hast also made our words powerful and great, even that we cannot write them; wherefore, when we write we behold our weakness, and stumble because of the placing of our words; and I fear lest the Gentiles shall mock at our words.

How does God give men weaknesses?

There are 2 ways that he does this.

The 1st is through our birth

2 Nephi 2:25
25 Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy.

We are given these weaknesses because of the fall of Adam. These weaknesses may also be from previous generations.

The 2nd way is out of love for us, his children. God is the giver and withholder of gifts.

Doctrine & Covenants 46:11
11 For all have not every gift given unto them; for there are many gifts, and to every man is given a gift by the Spirit of God.
Moroni 10:17
17 And all these gifts come by the Spirit of Christ; and they come unto every man severally, according as he will.

For us to receive a gift from God, it must needs be that one is denied. For the meek, this leads to a realisation of a dependence on God. This dependence will make us see ourselves in new eyes. This is the crunch time. Will we resent or repent? Will we allow the mercy and longsuffering of God to have full sway in our hearts so that we can be brought down to the dust in humility?

What is Humility?

2 Nephi 9:42
42 And whoso knocketh, to him will he open; and the wise, and the learned, and they that are rich, who are puffed up because of their learning, and their wisdom, and their riches—yea, they are they whom he despiseth; and save they shall cast these things away, and consider themselves fools before God, and come down in the depths of humility, he will not open unto them.

This is our mark of what we need to not be.

It is also interesting to note that when the scriptures speak of humility it is not a noun, but a verb.

This essentially means that we are responsible for humbling ourselves, even if we are compelled to be humble.

Alma 42:24
24 For behold, justice exerciseth all his demands, and also mercy claimeth all which is her own; and thus, none but the truly penitent are saved.
2 Nephi 2:7
7 Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered

Throughout the Book of Mormon, we are counselled to bring a broken heart and contrite spirit to the Lord. This is one of the keys of humility.

The Hebrew roots of the word humility means to be submissive, mild, patient, gentle and perhaps even saintly. We need to be like clay in the hands of the potter. The Book of Mormon is consistent in telling us that sufficient humility equals Christ pouring down sufficient grace. This is the grace that purges, cleanses, heals and strengthens us.

What is Grace?

The scriptures make mention often of the word grace. The main idea of the word is divine means of help or strength, given through the bounteous mercy and love of Jesus Christ.

This bounteous mercy and love is what we can refer to as the Atonement. It is through the Atonement that we receive this grace.

John 1:17
17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

Grace is the enabling power by which men and women can lay hold onto eternal life and exaltation.

It is through grace that we can receive assistance and strength to do good works and overcome our weaknesses. Without this grace, we would not be able to do this on our own.

2 Nephi 25:23
23 For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.
Moroni 10:32
32 Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.

To enable grace to work, we must demonstrate faith and repentance. This also shows our humility to God and that we are willing to change.

How do weak things become strong?

I want to share several examples with you to demonstrate how this is possible.

1: As mentioned previously, the Lords answer in Ether 12:27 was brought about by Moroni worrying that he will be mocked because of his weakness in writing. Even though the writers in the Book of Mormon were not considered literary scholars, their words have become strong. Through their words Jesus Christ has been recognised, embraced and glorified. Converts who have found Christ in the Book of Mormon begin to see Him more clearly in the bible. They begin to see Christ everywhere else. The Book of Mormon has become strong to them.

2: From the beginning of this dispensation, the church has flourished through the efforts of “mere mortals”. The real strength of these “mere mortals” was to be sufficiently humble to call down power from heaven. Amidst the calamity of false pride and its consequences, we are told that weak things shall break down the mighty and strong ones. This can only be done in one way: through the name and faith and power of Jesus Christ.

Doctrine & Covenants 1:23
23 That the fulness of my gospel might be proclaimed by the weak and the simple unto the ends of the world, and before kings and rulers.
Doctrine & Covenants 35:13
13 Wherefore, I call upon the weak things of the world, those who are unlearned and despised, to thrash the nations by the power of my Spirit;

This is how the Lord describes his missionaries.

Doctrine & Covenants 135:59
59 And by the weak things of the earth the Lord shall thrash the nations by the power of his Spirit.

This is a promise of the Lord.

The church continues to become ever stronger to this day.

3: Through an ever-closer kinship with God, our flaws and failings may eventually be transformed into shining strengths. When we acknowledge our weakness to the Lord, we receive his aid and we become stronger.

Of Joseph Smith it has been said, “in weakness was he blessed” and “out of weakness he shall be made strong”

When Joseph and Hyrum began the journey that would lead to their deaths, Hyrum turned the page down on the same promise of the Lord to Moroni.

Ether 12:27
27 And it came to pass that the Lord said unto me: If they have not charity it mattereth not unto thee, thou hast been faithful; wherefore, thy garments shall be made clean. And because thou hast seen thy weakness thou shalt be made strong, even unto the sitting down in the place which I have prepared in the mansions of my Father.

A promise that can be for us in our day.

Ether 12:27 Talk
Ether 12:27 Talk
Ether 12:27 Talk