Book of Mormon Epiphany

Reading Enos recently I was struck with an idea. Enos talks about his wrestle with GOD before "receiving a remission of his sins." The idea that came to me is that Enos is describing his day long prayer to receive the baptism of fire. Mormon, the book's editor, could have left this very short book out of his collection. He chose not to, probably because he felt it was the perfect example of what the book is trying to get us to do before we die. 

Joseph Smith was quoted saying "you may as well baptize a bag of sand" if you do not add the baptism of fire. Modern Mormonism does not have the power or authority to add the most important part of this eternal equation. Only true hand-selected apostles by JESUS (face to face) have this awesome authority. GOD usually reserves this power to Himself. Unless you run into John the Beloved or one the Three Nephites, you are going to have get this gift from GOD. 

Grant Hardy in his annotated Book of Mormon from Oxford writes that almost without exception in the BOM, that baptism by water is for entering a covenant with GOD. Baptism of fire is for the remission of sins. Only in Alma 7 is the ordinance described as remitting sins. I understand both baptisms are important, but if you do not get the latter you have wasted your life.

I have been baptized 4 times. Once as a 8 year old Mormon child. Once in a natural lake is southern Utah by Marv Bateman. Twice in the Pacific Ocean by Mike Hamill. Twice, because the first time he misstated the prayer that goes with it, and I did not catch it. We did it again to be safe. 

None of these efforts was followed by the baptism of fire. The first one because I was too young to be making the decision to be baptized. The other three because I had not truly confessed my sins and had not really attempted to stop sinning. My last three efforts were insincere and hypocritical. 

My next goal is to actually receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. If you have not received this yet, you need to stop what you are doing and start asking GOD for this critical blessing. I would suggest Rob Smith's book Seek Ye This Jesus, where he has a chapter of this subject (chapter 7 "Born Again" starting on page 33).

Good luck.


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