“And in Nothing Doth Man Offend God, or against None Is His Wrath Kindled, Save Those Who Confess Not His Hand in All Things, and Obey Not His Commandments”

Doctrine and Covenants 59:16–24

16 Verily I say, that inasmuch as ye do this, the fulness of the earth is yours, the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air, and that which climbeth upon the trees and walketh upon the earth;
17 Yea, and the herb, and the good things which come of the earth, whether for food or for raiment, or for houses, or for barns, or for orchards, or for gardens, or for vineyards;
18 Yea, all things which come of the earth, in the season thereof, are made for the benefit and the use of man, both to please the eye and to gladden the heart;
19 Yea, for food and for raiment, for taste and for smell, to strengthen the body and to enliven the soul.
20 And it pleaseth God that he hath given all these things unto man; for unto this end were they made to be used, with judgment, not to excess, neither by extortion.
21 And in nothing doth man offend God, or against none is his wrath kindled, save those who confess not his hand in all things, and obey not his commandments.
22 Behold, this is according to the law and the prophets; wherefore, trouble me no more concerning this matter.
23 But learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.
24 I, the Lord, have spoken it, and the Spirit beareth record. Amen.

President Joseph Fielding Smith wrote:

“The intentions and purposes of the Lord towards His children have always been to make them happy. This is the very purpose for existence. Lehi has well expressed the thought in these words: ‘Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy’ [2 Nephi 2:25]. The Lord does not find happiness in the misery, unhappiness, and suffering of men. Men have to pay the price of sin if they will not repent, but that punishment does not come because our Father, who is loving, kind, and merciful, delights in giving it. He made the world good [see Genesis 1:31] and placed in and upon it every needful thing to bring to its inhabitants happiness, peace, and contentment, while they remain here in mortality. True, we would, under mortal conditions, have to come in contact with some sorrow, pain, and restriction, no matter how well we kept the commandments of the Lord, for all of this was intended to give us experience, broaden our natures, and prepare us to be like our Eternal Father; but the pain, sorrow, and distress would be of such a nature that even in it we could find joy, if we were true to the will of the Lord. This would be true, because we would understand the purpose of all the vicissitudes of life and know that they are given for our knowledge and education, and that we may have this necessary experience. The distress and pain that come from wickedness and disobedience we could avoid if we had the intelligence to observe that we have been divinely taught, and ‘live by every word that proceedeth . . . from the mouth of God’ [D&C 84:44]. The Nephites, for two hundred years, enjoyed the fulness of the earth as the Lord intended, after Christ came to them, and we read of their happiness during that time, as follows:

“‘And there were no envyings, nor strifes, nor tumults, nor whoredoms, nor lyings, nor murders, nor any manner of lasciviousness; and surely there could not be a happier people among all the people who had been created by the hand of God’ [4 Nephi 1:16].

“This world, even in its fallen state, is beautiful with its many gifts and beneficient blessings all arranged for the use of man. Our misery, poverty, and jealousy come because of selfishness and greed and in the failure to heed the word of the Lord. There is no peace, no happiness, no real prosperity, except through obedience to the will of our Heavenly Father. He has reason to expect us to acknowledge His hand in all things and to keep His commandments.”

(Church History and Modern Revelation, 2 vols. [1953], 1:218–19.)

Comments