“Cultivate a spirit of charity; be ready to do for others more than you would expect from them if circumstances were reversed.”
Obviously doing good to others is a good and Godly principle. LDS, like main stream Christians seek to follow this biblical principle of Charity and service, loving your neighbour, treating others as you would expect to be treated yourselves. This chapter begins with a story of Lorenzo and his family’s exodus from Norvoo, they helped a man who needed a ride on their wagon and in turn the man (who happened to work in repairing wagons,) repaired the wagon for the family when they were in desperate need. Lorenzo commented that this situation reinforced in him the principle that one favour often leads to another.
the next heading states…
“We are Children of the same Heavenly Father, and we have been sent into the world to do Good.”
Lorenzo speaks here of the LDS belief that everyone on earth is literally brothers and sisters as they were conceived and born in heaven as spirit children of God the Father and his wife. Therefore with this in mind he advocates LDS to treat their kin well, treating them as they would a brother or a sister.
As part of this doing good to others, Lorenzo also calls LDS to share their learning, saying that by “communicating his information while engaging in learning it,” a person can learn all the more. Pursuing education is strongly encouraged within the LDS church.
Seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom, seek learning even by study and also by faith.” –Doctrine and Covenants 109:7
Lorenzo goes on to discuss how we should seek the good of our friends, and sacrificing for the sake of others.
“We see this in the Savior, and in brother Joseph, and we see it in our President ( Brigham Young ). Jesus, brother Joseph and brother Brigham have always been willing to sacrifice all they possess for the good of the people.”
I have to say that I am offended here on behalf of our Savior that Lorenzo would even think to compare anyone to Him. By all means advocate living a sacrificial life, and yes perhaps Joseph Smith and Brigham Young did this to some extent, but I think Jesus is in a league of His own.
I think to some extent Lorenzo puts across the idea that, one favour leads to another in return, to help others does you good, in teaching others you will learn more, by sharing knowledge your, “mind will expand, and that light and knowledge which he (you) had gained would increase and multiply” Sure I agree that their are “treasures in heaven,” like in the story of the servants who are given talents to use wisely, (Matthew 25:14-30), those who do use them wisely will receive a reward. But then we also have the story of the good Samaritan, what was his reward?
To know he had done the will of the Father, and perhaps more in the next life. Did he receive a reward in this life we’ll never know, but I believe he did this good service to his fellow man purely out of a love for and obedience to God.
Quite a short post for me, I think we’re largely in agreement that we should do good to others, as the Bible instructs.
As always I’m happy to receive your feedback