Nephi and Lehi were travelling to the land of Nephi when they were captured by the Lamanites and thrown into prison. Whilst in prison they were encircled by fire, but unharmed, the Lamanites couldn’t kill them and the prison walls then began to shake, but did not tumble. The sky then changed, and the land was overshadowed with a cloud of darkness, and they heard a voice coming from above the darkness that said:
“……Repent ye, repent ye, and seek no more to destroy my servants whom I have sent unto you to declare good tidings.
“And it came to pass when they heard this voice, and beheld that it was not a voice of thunder, neither was it a voice of a great tumultuous noise, but behold, it was a still voice of perfect mildness, as if it had been a whisper, and it did pierce even to the very soul—
“And notwithstanding the mildness of the voice, behold the earth shook exceedingly, and the walls of the prison trembled again, as if it were about to tumble to the earth; and behold the cloud of darkness, which had overshadowed them, did not disperse—
(Helaman 5:29 - 31)
They heard the voice a further two times, but still the darkness did not disperse.
“Now there was one among them who was a Nephite by birth, who had once belonged to the church of God but had dissented from them.
“And it came to pass that he turned him about, and behold, he saw through the cloud of darkness the faces of Nephi and Lehi; and behold, they did shine exceedingly, even as the faces of angels. And he beheld that they did lift their eyes to heaven; and they were in the attitude as if talking or lifting their voices to some being whom they beheld.
“And it came to pass that this man did cry unto the multitude, that they might turn and look. And behold, there was power given unto them that they did turn and look; and they did behold the faces of Nephi and Lehi.
(Helaman 5:35 - 37)
I thought about these verses in relation to General Conference. The Lamanites had obviously witnessed the miracle of fire encircling Nephi & Lehi, and them being unharmed, and they heard the voice of God from Heaven also, but the darkness which had come upon them still didn’t lift. They were directed to “turn and look” upon the faces of the prophets, and only as they did this and followed their teachings, developing faith in Christ, did the cloud disperse.
My prayer is that as we go to Conference this weekend that we will “look” for the 'still voice of perfect mildness, as if it had been a whisper,' that we will “turn” to the Prophets and Apostles and hear the words the Lord wishes to speak to us, that any clouds of darkness we may be experiencing may also be lifted.
How blessed we are to have the technology that allows us to hear the Lords words, firsthand, from the lips of our Prophets.
(re-posted from April 2009)