|Mary and Baby Jesus - Photo from LDS Media Library|
The great men and women I've chosen to share about today are from the scriptures.
Eve and Adam
Eve chose to partake of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. She choose agency - the greatest gift our Heavenly Father has given to us. Adam chose to stay with Eve (and partook of the fruit) - knowing that he was choosing between two commandments that he had been given: 1) to stay with Eve and 2) to abstain from the fruit. He couldn't keep both of them after Eve had partaken of the fruit. Together they chose mortality (life and death). Adam was the first man and Eve was the mother of all living. He is the angel Michael and he helped create the earth.
Noah was obedient to God and built an ark in a time when the people were only doing evil. Again, this was about agency as the children didn't have a chance to discern between good and evil when all around them was evil. Noah plead with the people to repent and change their ways. The people didn't change and God flooded the earth and saved Noah and his family. He became the father of all living. Through him the earth was re-created. He is the angel Gabriel and he announced Jesus' birth.
Abraham made covenants with God and was promised that through him all the nations of the earth would be blessed - that he indeed would be a father of many nations. He would have numerous posterity and through his posterity all the families of the earth would receive the blessings of salvation and exaltation. He received these promises when he didn't have any children; he wouldn't have Issac until he was 100 years old! He teaches me about patience and long suffering. He was willing to sacrifice his son (his promised posterity) to do the will of God. He teaches me to trust in Heavenly Father's will and time frame. Through the Abrahamic Covenant the blessings of the temple (salvation and exaltation) are offered to all mankind.
Mary the mother of Christ "kept all these things and pondered them in her heart". What did Mary know? What were her experiences? What heavenly teaching and training did she receive to be the mother of the Son of God? What did she think of the star, and the shepherds arrival? And a few years later when the wise men arrived; did she know they were coming, did she know who they were? From Mary I am learning how to keep spiritual things more sacred. She endured much and she loved much.
There would be no Christmas if there had been no Easter. Jesus would be just another child in Israel. Because He took upon himself the sins, sickness, unfairness, etc of all mankind and atoned for all our shortcomings and injustices we are free from spiritual death. Because He took upon himself physical death and led the way to immortality through resurrection, we are free from physical death. He is our Savior, our Redeemer. He preserves agency and promises immortality (salvation) and eternal life (exaltation). He was Jehovah the creator of the earth and we choose to become His as we take upon ourselves His name.
See this post for more information about "Memory Jogger Monday":