“The Blood of the Lamb”

by Craig Lindquist

Sitting on my bunk as a young marine, I decided to take a look at the Book of Mormon my mother had sent me. I honestly gave it my best, but try as I might, I could hardly understand a word of what I was reading. I soon gave up and set the book aside, not to touch it again for a number of years. When I did, I continued to read for days, looking for what I had been unable to understand before. Yet all of it now flowed so easily into my soul. The difference was the Spirit and my own readiness.

While the Spirit has helped me become better at understanding much of scripture over the intervening years, some verses still take a great deal of searching and pondering. John’s writings in the book of Revelation are a case in point. Like Shakespeare, John had a gift for poetic prose. Unlike Shakespeare, he was blessed with visions concerning our day and wrote so that we might know beforehand what was to come. Commenting on the prophecies of the book of Revelation, President Wilford Woodruff taught this remarkable principle:

God has held the angels of destruction for many years, lest they should reap down the wheat with the tares. But I want to tell you now, that those angels have left the portals of heaven, and they stand over this people and this nation now, and are hovering over the earth waiting to pour out the judgments. And from this very day they shall be poured out. Calamities and troubles are increasing in the earth, and there is a meaning to these things. Remember this, and reflect upon these matters. If you do your duty, and I do my duty, we’ll have protection, and shall pass through the afflictions in peace and in safety. Read the scriptures and the revelations. They will tell you about all these things. Great changes are at our doors.1

As we heed President Woodruff’s counsel, it may initially appear as though John wrote only of apocalyptic calamities and tribulations, but he was in fact teaching us how to survive spiritually in the troubling times that are increasing in intensity each day. In speaking of how the Saints of God overcame Satan in that great battle in heaven, John gave us the keys we need to access God’s protection for us and our families in these words: “They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death” (Revelation 12:11).

The first key we must have is, of course, the grace of the Lamb, even Jesus Christ. Without Him and His atoning sacrifice all would be lost. With Him, all is possible. The second key is our individual testimonies that we must gain through studying, praying, and following our Savior. And last, we must value the first two keys over life itself. So let us remember to do our duty, and we shall indeed pass through the afflictions we face in peace and safety.

Craig Lindquist is an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He is a father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, happily married to Dianna for the past 46 years. By trade he is a cabinetmaker, actor, and writer. He lives in Henderson, Nevada, except when he travels to film or to work on the construction of temples.

  1. Discourse by Wilford Woodruff, June 24, 1894, p. 1, The Wilford Woodruff Papers, wilfordwoodruffpapers.org/discourse/1894-06-24.