Living the gospel precedes righteous deeds

Decide to do good

Provide gospel service- Rely on the Lord

Describing the current time in history as one "of ambiguous mores and of little direction," Elder Hans B. Ringger said Sunday afternoon, "When we look for answers on an eternal plane we will secure our relationship to God and gain a better understanding of our fellow beings.

"We will, thus, be capable of serving; such is the purpose of life."

Elder Ringger of the Seventy said that active faith leads to good works. "Only after we have honestly decided in favor of good, based on the gospel, can we bring forth righteous deeds. Through gospel service our eternal needs can be satisfied and we will be able to serve in the world."

Elder Ringger said human life is based on freedom of choice. "It is, therefore, a challenge in everyone's life to choose the straight and narrow path and avoid a life which lacks eternal direction."

He suggested some spiritual road signs that can be used for guidance and direction toward achieving the highest potential destiny of exaltation. They are:

"1. Be true. Stand up for the prophets and the scriptures.

"2. Keep the first of the Ten Commandments: `Thou shalt have no other gods before me (Ex. 20:3). Through the choice and temptations of this world, we often lose sight of true values and turn our hearts to wealth, careers, hobbies, persons, and, worst of all, to the gratification of our own ego.

"3. Distinguish between essence and appearance. God knows our heart and He cannot be deceived. We will never obtain the joy of loving and trusting relationships with our fellow beings unless they are based on honesty.

"4. Rise above selfishness. This includes spiritual selfishness, when one only looks toward personal edification and strengthening and has no other interest than one's own salvation."

To be capable of following those road signs, according to Elder Ringger, it is necessary to be humble and have faith in the Lord. "He will provide His strength to meet our challenges and many things will take care of themselves. The spirit of God strengthens us physically, spiritually, and emotionally. It is now up to us to choose the way.

"The ills of today's world and fleeting social peace are the result of past wrongdoings and disregard of godly principles. As individuals and as a Church, we must ask ourselves what we are contributing to our fellow beings."

Concluding, Elder Ringger said the answer to the question, "What shall we do," is the same given by Joshua: "Choose you this day whom ye will serve . . . but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord." (Joshua 24:15.)

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