As I spoke I was reminded of what my father endured as a child at the hands of Hitler's armies. On the way home I listened to the Glenn Beck Show, one of my favorite radio shows. He spoke of the attitude forced upon Americans, convincing us that we do not live in a promised land and we are not a special people. He spoke most passionately about this land being the promised land and the people . . . also promised. He spoke of Christopher Columbus and how a divine hand led him to the Americas. He spoke of pride and greed overcoming this same man and how it cost him everything, dying a broken and destitute man. He had turned from God.
It was if I were listening to my father discuss the precious gift we have in this nation. Well, I agree with my dad and Glenn Beck. America is the promised land and only the righteous may dwell here. We still have millions upon millions of righteous Americans, but the tide is turning and it is a dangerous tide.
2 Nephi 10 tells us the following:President Marion G. Romney further explained:
11 And this land shall be a land of aliberty unto the Gentiles, and there shall be no bkings upon the land, who shall raise up unto the Gentiles.
12 And I will fortify this land aagainst all other nations.
More than two thousand years before his birth in the flesh, Jesus Christ led a small colony of people from Asia to America. As they came he instructed their prophet leaders “that whoso should possess this land of promise, from that time henceforth and forever, should serve Him, the true and only God, or they should be swept off … when they are ripened in iniquity” (Ether 2:8–9).
The descendants of this people, known as the Jaredites, became a mighty nation. They flourished here for some two thousand years. Obeying Christ in righteousness, they rose at times to great heights. Rejecting him, they declined until they completely annihilated themselves in fratricidal wars. An abridgment of their tragic history is found in the Book of Ether.
In 600 b.c., about the time the Jaredites were annihilating themselves, Jesus Christ directed another colony to this land. He revealed to them, as he had to the Jaredites, the truth that he is the God and King of the land [America]; that through accepting and obeying Him as such, they could always remain a free, prosperous, and happy people; and that if they chose to reject Him and disobey His laws, they would bring upon themselves certain destruction.
That they might be convinced, the Savior made available to them the records of the Jaredites, whom they replaced.
The thousand-year history of these people records their division into two factions—Nephites and Lamanites.
When they followed the guidance of the God of the land they reached great heights. After His postresurrection ministry among them, all who survived the cataclysm which accompanied His crucifixion—both Nephites and Lamanites—were “converted unto the Lord.” United, they built a society in which for about two hundred years “there were no contentions and disputations among them, and every man did deal justly one with another. … There were not rich and poor, bond and free, but they were all made free, and … the Lord did prosper them exceedingly in the land.
I promise that this was a land held in reserve that the gospel of Jesus Christ might be fully restored on her free shores. I assure you that the saints of Jesus Christ would and will hold a standard to the nations of the expectations of the Lord. From this promised land the restored gospel was spread to the world, and to this day, continues to spread.
Over the past decades many have attempted to dissuade Americans from this truth. We have been accused of being elitists because we know this land is promised and we know we are privileged to live within her borders. Why? Why are we to be ashamed or convinced this land was not held in reserve by the Lord to serve the purpose of saving the world? Why are we to believe that it is not our responsibility to be that example of freedom, hope, morality, courage and strength? It is not elitist. It is knowledge.
We are a privileged and promised people living in a promised land. Millions have died in defense of this nation, and nations across the world and all we have held dear for over two hundred years because they believed it was worth fighting and dying for.
What will you do when someone tries to convince you this is not a promised land?
What will you do when the time comes to stand for what you believe in and defend it with all your passion, strength and courage?
What will you do when standing before the Lord and He asks for a report on your stewardship as an American citizen?
Will you answer the call?