Sunday, January 18, 2015

I Am a Child of God

One of my favorite primary songs is “I Am a Child of God”, the first verse & chorus says;

I am a child of God,
And he has sent me here,
Has given me an earthly home
With parents kind and dear.

Lead me, guide me, walk beside me,
Help me find the way.
Teach me all that I must do
To live with him someday.

At one time or another most of us have asked who am I and where did I come from? I decided to ask Siri (Apple’s personal assistant) that question and she came up with several answers:

1.              Some YouTube videos on sex Education
2.              Man’s Origin—Where Did I Come From? Middletown Bible Church
3.              A song by Montgomery Gentry “Where Did I Come From”

In the Middletown Bible Church’s discussion on the Origins of Man they discuss the theory of evolution (which they say is false) and the theory that man’s origins are from Aliens from other worlds (which they also say is false). The third idea is that God created man; and the first man and woman was Adam and Eve. (“Man’s Origin—Where Did I Come From”)

I believe the account of the creation that is found in Genesis, but it does not give the full story nor does it answer the second question “Where did I come from?” To find that answer we need to go to other biblical scriptures as well as the writings from other prophets of God. The Lord tells Jeremiah that he knew him before he was born and that he was ordained to be a prophet:

Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations. (Jeremiah 1:5)

If our lives started at birth, how could the Lord have known Jeremiah before he was born and how could he have been ordained a prophet? The Book of Mormon prophet Alma tells us how Jeremiah was ordained before he was born.

And this is the manner after which they were ordained—being called and prepared from the foundation of the world according to the foreknowledge of God, on account of their exceeding faith and good works; in the first place being left to choose good or evil; therefore they having chosen good, and exercising exceedingly great faith, are called with a holy calling, yea, with that holy calling which was prepared with, and according to, a preparatory redemption for such. (Alma 13:3)

The Prophet Abraham was also shown a vision of the premortal life and he was taught that we were all lived in heaven as spirit children of God:

Now the Lord had shown unto me, Abraham, the intelligences that were organized before the world was; and among all these there were many of the noble and great ones;

And God saw these souls that they were good, and he stood in the midst of them, and he said: These I will make my rulers; for he stood among those that were spirits, and he saw that they were good; and he said unto me: Abraham, thou art one of them; thou wast chosen before thou wast born.

And there stood one among them that was like unto God, and he said unto those who were with him: We will go down, for there is space there, and we will take of these materials, and we will make an earth whereon these may dwell;

And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them; (Abraham 3:22-25)

With these teachings in mind we have a better understanding of what Paul meant when he said that we should be subject to the Father of our spirits:

Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? (Hebrews 12:9)

Before we were created physically we lived as spirit sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father. Jesus Christ was not only the only begotten Son of God in the flesh, but he was the first-born spirit of our Heavenly Father. What a wonderful teaching to understand. Not only are we not here by chance or evolution, but we are children of God and have come to earth to prove ourselves worthy to return to live with Him and His Son for all eternity with our families that we have here on earth. God’s work  and glory is the exaltation of his children:

And the Lord God spake unto Moses, saying: The heavens, they are many, and they cannot be numbered unto man; but they are numbered unto me, for they are mine.

And as one earth shall pass away, and the heavens thereof even so shall another come; and there is no end to my works, neither to my words.

For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. (Moses 1:37-39)

President Gordon B. Hinckley speaking at a special broadcast to the children of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints taught that God is the father of our spirits:

“You have an earthly father. He is your mother’s dear companion. I hope you love him and that you are obedient to him. But you have another father. That is your Father in Heaven. He is the Father of your spirit, just as your earthly father is the father of your body. And it is just as important to love and to obey your Father in Heaven as it is to love and obey your earthly father.” (“You Are a Child of God”, Gordon B. Hinckley, General Conference, April 2003)

On the YouTube Mormon Channel there is a video “I Am a Child of God” that starts with a small child singing that primary song. As the video continues other youth and adults join in singing. That video has been viewed 1.5 million times and has about a thousand comments from people all over the world of many different faiths. The Mormon Channel blog had this to say about some of the comments:

One person wrote, “This song made me feel the spirit so much, I cried. I don’t get spiritual a lot, but this was another very good experience for me. :)”

Emily Grace admitted, “This song always moves me somehow.”

Russell Mathews listened and wrote, “It was amazing. It was just so great.”

And Susan Remington shed “tears and tears of joy” from listening to the song and feeling its message.

The video has been viewed more than a million times, and there are close to a thousand comments from people who say, “beautiful,” “touching,” “fantastico,” “bello,” and others. It’s a testament to the universal message of the song.

While the song is a favorite among members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, what is amazing are the comments from people of all religions.

“You don’t have to be Mormon to love this song,” Lucille Gauthier posted. “You don’t even have to be Christian. I love the first part. That’s so beautiful.”

Ana de Coss said she was “Catholic, but this is a beautiful song.”

Angharad Bottomley commented, “I’m not LDS, but I love this beautifully worded song. Thank you.”

And Gervie Acain summed it up with “We are sons and daughters of God, all of us, regardless of our religion. I love this song and it radiates how the Savior loves us.” (“I Am a Child of God”, Mormon Channel Blog, Thursday, January 15, 2015)

I invite to watch the 3-minute video and then share your comments and questions in the comment section below.

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