Advent reflections from the Book of Mormon: 2017

Starting on Sunday, Nov. 26, and continuing until Christmas Eve, I will post a series of daily reflections for Advent 2017. The reflections are built around the preaching of Samuel the Lamanite, who in the Book of Mormon prophesies Jesus’s birth five years before it happens, and the subsequent story of believers waiting for Samuel’s prophecy to be fulfilled. The title of this year’s reflection series is “Christ will surely come” (Helaman 5:7).

As in past years, each reflection will consist of a selection from the Book of Mormon, a cross-referenced biblical passage (many of which will be passages traditionally read during Advent), and a short commentary. Sunday reflections will be longer than usual, including an introduction to the week’s theme and a suggested hymn from Community of Christ Sings.

In 2017, the Fourth Sunday of Advent falls on Christmas Eve; as a result, the Advent season is only three weeks long this year, not four. However, I wanted to have four full weeks of reflections. To do that, I’m beginning this year’s reflections the week before the First Sunday of Advent.

Here’s the weekly schedule of readings and themes:

Nov. 26-Dec. 2: A Prophetic Voice
Dec. 3-9: A Call to Change
Dec. 10-16: A World Reversed
Dec. 17-23: A Hope Delayed
Dec. 24: A Promise Fulfilled

Although I will post each daily reflection for those who would like to read them online, I have also prepared a booklet containing all the reflections, which you can download or print:

Download the reflections (PDF, 800KB)

 

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June 4 (Pentecost)

Theme: You will receive power (Acts 1:8)
The Spirit endows Christ’s disciples with power to serve

Suggestion: Two passages appear below. Read the second immediately after reading the first, without pause, as if they were a single passage. Read it multiple times, so that the words can sink in.

Thus says the Holy Spirit:

I know your perplexities;
but if you call on my name,
my Spirit will go before you,
and I will continue to bless you as you have need.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 155:8
(Wallace B. Smith, 1982)

Neither be discouraged nor disheartened.
If you move out in faith and confidence
to proclaim my gospel,
my Spirit will empower you.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 154:7a
(Wallace B. Smith, 1980)

This has been the final reflection in the Easter-to-Pentecost 2017 series. Move forward in the power of the Spirit!

June 3 (Saturday)

Theme: The unity of the Spirit (Eph. 4:3)
The Spirit calls us to be united

Suggestion: Two passages appear below. Read the second immediately after reading the first, without pause, as if they were a single passage. Read it multiple times, so that the words can sink in.

Thus says the Holy Spirit:

Sustain each other in peace,
and you will be blessed with my Spirit,
in comforting and strengthening you for my work.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 117:13
(Joseph Smith III, 1873)

I know your perplexities;
but if you call on my name,
my Spirit will go before you,
and I will continue to bless you as you have need.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 155:8
(Wallace B. Smith, 1982)

About this pre-Pentecost reflection

June 2 (Friday)

Theme: The unity of the Spirit (Eph. 4:3)
The Spirit calls us to be united

Suggestion: Two passages appear below. Read the second immediately after reading the first, without pause, as if they were a single passage. Read it multiple times, so that the words can sink in.

Thus says the Holy Spirit:

If you come before me in unity and love,
I will bless you with a great outpouring of compassion,
both for one another
and for the world into which you are sent.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 157:17
(Wallace B. Smith, 1988)

Sustain each other in peace,
and you will be blessed with my Spirit,
in comforting and strengthening you for my work.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 117:13
(Joseph Smith III, 1873)

About this pre-Pentecost reflection

June 1 (Thursday)

Theme: The unity of the Spirit (Eph. 4:3)
The Spirit calls us to be united

Suggestion: Two passages appear below. Read the second immediately after reading the first, without pause, as if they were a single passage. Read it multiple times, so that the words can sink in.

Thus says the Holy Spirit:

Though there are differences of opinion,
let those differences be held in unity of purpose
and desire for the good of my people.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 129:9b
(Joseph Smith III, 1909)

If you come before me in unity and love,
I will bless you with a great outpouring of compassion,
both for one another
and for the world into which you are sent.

Adapted from Doctrine and Covenants 157:17
(Wallace B. Smith, 1988)

About this pre-Pentecost reflection