Margie Clark, Gospel Principles, Lesson 4, Freedom to Choose
Agency Is an Eternal Principle
God has told us through His prophets that we are free to choose between good and evil. We may choose liberty and eternal life by following Jesus Christ. We are also free to choose captivity and death by following Satan. The right to choose between good and evil and to act for ourselves is called agency.
4 Conditions, In Order
- Laws - God said, “We will prove [test] them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them.”
- Opposites - Lehi told his son that there must be “an opposition in all things. If not so, … righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad.”
- Knowledge - God will not hold us accountable for something we did not know about. And, as we are taught in Corinthians, our Heavenly Father will not allow us to be tempted beyond our power to resist.
- Freedom to choose - If we were forced to choose the right, we would not be able to show what we would choose for ourselves. Also, we are happier doing things when we have made our own choices.
Even though we are free to choose our course of action, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions. The consequences, whether good or bad, follow as a natural result of any choice we make.
Heavenly Father has told us how to escape the captivity of Satan. We must watch and pray always, asking God to help us withstand the temptations of Satan.
God’s commandments direct us away from danger and toward eternal life. By choosing wisely, we will gain exaltation, progress eternally, and enjoy perfect happiness
- • Moses 7:32 (freedom of choice)
- • Abraham 3:24–25 (earth life a test)
- • Alma 41:3; Moroni 7:5–6 (works judged)
- • 2 Nephi 2:11–16 (opposition is necessary)
- • Moroni 7:12–17 (choosing good and evil)
- • 2 Peter 2:19; John 8:34 (sin is bondage)
- • 2 Nephi 2:28–29; Alma 40:12–13 (reward according to works)