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The LDS Daily WOOL© Archive - Theodore M. Burton

"Both the scriptures and talks given by men of God suggest a cleansing by fire that must come in the last days to purify the earth before the second coming of the Lord. That time is rapidly approaching, although no mortal knows the hour." — Theodore M. Burton, "A Disease Called Pride," Ensign, Mar. 1971, p. 26-27

"If we understood completely the designs of the Lord, we would be more patient in our suffering and would not complain as much as we so often do when hardships come and we are asked to sacrifice." - Theodore M. Burton, "Kingdom of God," Ensign, June 1971, p. 84

"It has been said that what is needed most today is not the voice of man, but the voice of God. Which generation of men and women have ever needed more the voice of a prophet of God to guide them than we do today? In a time in history when we are beset by a clamor of voices from every side saying 'Lo, here is truth' or 'No, here is truth,' where can we find an authoritative voice saying 'Thus saith the Lord'? Where is a Moses, or an Isaiah, or a Peter, or a Paul who can speak from personal knowledge of God?...

"God's way is the way to solve our political, moral, ethical, even our financial problems. The way of the Lord can eliminate wars, riots, discrimination, suffering, and starvation. What the world then needs is direction from a true prophet who, knowing the mind and the will of God, can speak in his name with power and authority and say, 'Thus saith the Lord!'

"That day has come!" - Theodore M. Burton, "Thus Saith the Lord," Ensign, Dec. 1971, p. 79

"Life is soon gone. Grandparents do not live forever. Parents all too soon become grandparents and in turn pass away themselves. They and their influence will then in part be lost as memories begin to fade. All too soon our imprint in the lives of our descendants begins to dwindle. We can keep that flame of love burning brightly if we write down a personal history of our lives and that of our families. By so doing we can pass on to our descendants in a more permanent form the courage, the faith, and the hopes we felt within us as we lived our lives and solved the problems which faced us. Passing an account of these experiences on to them will provide them with vital guidance and direction.

"In these personal histories we can express to them our love, our hopes, and our desires. We can pass on to them a knowledge of our family ancestry and express to them the pride we feel in our family heritage and the blessings we have received through those who went before us. In this manner we can keep the flame of love burning brightly in our children long after we have gone. When we reduce to writing those things that have strengthened our own faith and courage, we strengthen faith and courage in our children and grandchildren." - Theodore M. Burton, "The Inspiration of a Family Record," Ensign, Jan. 1977, 14

"As we plead for mercy, we need to show mercy to others. The injury people do us may appear at the moment to be very great. Yet, just as time heals the wounds of the body, so time also heals the wounds of the soul. As we apply disinfectants to aid in healing the wounds of the body, we need to apply love and understanding in disinfecting the wounds of the soul. To the extent we give forgiveness to others, we can expect to receive forgiveness for ourselves. It is all part of the process of repentance." - Theodore M. Burton, "To Forgive Is Divine," Ensign (CR), May 1983, p.70

"When I was a young boy, I went with my father to inspect a mine in Nevada. We each had flashlights, but took no extra batteries with us, for we did not expect to be in the mine very long. But the tunnel was longer, colder, and deeper than we anticipated. Before we got to the end of the mine, where the mineral was, father told me to turn off my flashlight to save my batteries. By the time father had finished inspecting the mine, his flashlight began to dim, and he suggested we had better turn back. Before long his flashlight gave out completely, and I can still remember—until I again turned on my light—the panic I felt to be in such cold and utter blackness. Although my own batteries gave out before we reached the mine entrance, we were by then guided by the dim light coming from the mouth of the tunnel. How good it felt to see the light increase as we made our way back to the entrance and found ourselves in warm, brilliant sunlight.

"I have since wondered how anyone could knowingly prefer to live where it is dark and cold. How could anybody willingly prefer darkness and misery over light and warmth? Yet darkness, cold, and misery will be the lot of those who willingly and knowingly reject the Lord. John wrote, 'God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.' (1 Jn. 1:5.)" - Theodore M. Burton, "Light and Truth," Ensign (CR), May 1981, p.28

"Just as this life depends upon the previous life, so this life is most important for the future, for life hereafter depends upon our life here in mortality. Jesus has shown us the actuality of the resurrection. We have overwhelming testimony of eternal life. It is not some mysterious nirvana, but an eternal life in the flesh that we will receive as individual beings. Life, therefore, follows death as dawn follows darkness, breaking forth into the light of a perfect day. What kind of life will this be for you?" - Theodore M. Burton, "Conference Report," October 1966, Afternoon Meeting, p.34

"Over the library of the Utah State University stands in big gold letters a statement taken from the scriptures: 'Get wisdom, and with all thy getting get understanding.' (Prov. 4:7) We must feed the spirit as well as the mind and as well as the body. I plead with our youth, get learning, and with all your getting get understanding. Get learning of the spirit. Get learning of the mind. Get learning of the soul, and become a rounded man or a rounded woman learned in all ways, for I testify to you this day that security, true security comes from a knowledge of the divinity of Jesus Christ. This is the beginning of all learning and of all wisdom. This is the greatest knowledge, the greatest learning, the greatest comfort that men can have. If men have this knowledge in their hearts, they can withstand all the vicissitudes of life. No trial, no trouble can come, but that a man or a woman can withstand it. He can rise victorious if he has a love of Christ and a testimony of his divinity burning in his heart." -  Theodore M. Burton, "Conference Report," April 1961, Afternoon Meeting, p.129

“Thus, from the beginning of creation, God planned to have leaders available in the last days holding the power of the holy priesthood. With this power we can help bring peace to the world by practicing peace. It must begin in our homes, in our quorums, in our auxiliaries, and within every single Church unit. People are so hungry for peace today that if we truly demonstrate peace among ourselves and to others, they will flock to the Church in great numbers. The greatest missionary tool we have is that of demonstrating friendliness, brotherly kindness, harmony, love, and peace in our homes and in all our Church meetings. If we follow the example of Jesus Christ and become true peacemakers, that flood of love will cover the earth as with a blanket. The only way Satan can ever be bound will be through the love of man for God and for one another.” - Theodore M. Burton, “Blessed Are the Peacemakers,” Ensign (CR), November 1974, p. 54

Just as a sewing pattern determines the dress or clothes we wear, so our present lives determine our future existence. Why do people have to go through the “school of hard knocks” to learn this truth? The scriptures and instructions from our spiritual leaders teach us how to avoid the heartache which always results from sin. - Theodore M. Burton, "Let Mercy Temper Justice," Ensign (CR) October 1985

I understand that to “minister” means we should teach, befriend, and help that person to understand, repent, and return to God. If that person then repents and is baptized, that is good. But if that person refuses to repent, he or she is not yet ready to be numbered among the members of the Church of Christ. The Savior then instructs us how to treat those who have not yet repented:

“Nevertheless, ye shall not cast him out of your synagogues, or your places of worship, for unto such shall ye continue to minister; for ye know not but what they will return and repent, and come unto me with full purpose of heart, and I shall heal them; and ye shall be the means of bringing salvation unto them.” (3 Ne. 18:32.) - Theodore M. Burton, "Let Mercy Temper Justice," Ensign (CR) November 1985

When a man is convinced that he is truly a son of God or a woman is convinced that she is truly a daughter of God, there are no limits to the growth of that person. This is a fundamental concept of our Church membership. As members of a royal family, no longer will we be content to be like other men and women. We feel different. We realize that nothing can keep us from success when we are doing the Lord’s work. We are willing to work harder, to sacrifice more, and to share our talents and blessings with others because we know who we are. - Theodore M. Burton, “Thus Saith the Lord,” Ensign (CR) November 1971

As I see how many people, not only in Europe but everywhere, quarrel and antagonize one another, I understand better why Jesus continually emphasized the need for love. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a gospel of love. A life of love is not an easy life to live, especially when one lives in a world where strife with neighbors and strife within one’s own family is so common. People have been hurt so often in the past that they are constantly on guard one against another. They have drawn a defensive circle around themselves so tightly it is difficult to penetrate. Yet they need to be taught love. - Theodore M. Burton, “The Need for Love,” Ensign (CR) May 1979

It appears to me that when we join the Church of Jesus Christ and especially when we receive the oath and covenant of the priesthood, we should commit ourselves wholly and completely to the cause of God. By this I do not mean we need give up our daily occupations or our interests in the daily affairs of mankind unless we are called by authority from God to do so. I do mean that a true change must occur in our thinking so complete and so total that our very lives are changed for the better as far as our attitudes and our actions are concerned. - Theodore M. Burton, "The Need for Total Commitment," Ensign (CR), January 1974, p. 114

A person's attitude is perhaps the hardest of all personal attributes to change. If your attitude is right, then your life is made right. If your heart is touched, your mind and way of thinking will change and your life will change for the better accordingly. I believe we must become so immersed in the gospel of Jesus Christ that we become physically as well as mentally more and more like the Lord himself. We must yield our whole hearts to him. What we then do is done not because we are asked to, nor because we are forced to, but because we want to. - Theodore M. Burton, "The Need for Total Commitment," Ensign (CR), January 1974, p.114

This principle of salvation for all mankind reflects the mercy, the kindness, and the love of God for all his children. Isn’t it strange that such a noble and important principle should be forgotten and no longer practiced in the present Christian world?
Such practices were part and parcel of the early Christian church. The work of salvation for the dead was such a common practice that Paul even used it as a proof that resurrection would come to all. In his first letter to the Corinthians, in chapter 15, verse 29, he wrote:
“Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are they then baptized for the dead?” [1 Cor. 15:29] – Theodore M. Burton, “Neither Cryptic Nor Hidden,” Ensign (CR) May 1977

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