King Mosiah, a man of Service | Mosiah 1-3 | Come Follow Me

People serve one another for different reasons. Some serve for hope of earthly reward. Such a man or woman may serve in a Church position or in private acts of mercy in an effort to achieve prominence or cultivate contacts that will increase income or aid in acquiring wealth.

[1] Others may serve in order to obtain worldly honors, prominence, or power. . . The scriptural word for gospel service “for the sake of riches and honor” is priestcraft (Alma 1:16).

[2] Another reason for service . . . is that which is motivated by a desire to obtain good companionship. We surely have good associations in our Church service, but is that an acceptable motive for service? . . . Persons who serve only to obtain good companionship are more selective in choosing their friends than the Master was in choosing his servants.

[3] Some serve out of fear of punishment. The scriptures abound with descriptions of the miserable state of those who fail to follow the commandments of God.

[4] Other persons serve out of a sense of duty or out of loyalty to family, friends, or traditions. I would call such persons ‘good soldiers.’ They instinctively do what they are asked, without question. . . . Such persons . . . do much good. We have all benefited from their good works. . . . Service of this character is worthy of praise and will surely qualify for blessings, especially if it is done willingly and joyfully.
[5] One such higher reason for service is the hope of an eternal reward. This hope . . . is one of our most powerful motivations.




The above five motives for service have a common deficiency. In varying degrees each focuses on the actor’s personal advantage, either on earth or in the judgment to follow. Each is self-centered. There is something deficient about any service that is conscious of self. A few months after my calling to the Council of the Twelve, I expressed my feelings of inadequacy to one of the senior members of my quorum. He responded with this mild reproof and challenging insight: “I suppose your feelings are understandable. But you should work for a condition where you will not be preoccupied with yourself and your own feelings and can give your entire concern to others, to the work of the Lord in all the world.”

Those who seek to follow [the Savior’s] . . . example must lose themselves in their service to others. If our service is to be most efficacious, it must be unconcerned with self and heedless of personal advantage. It must be accomplished for the love of God and the love of his children. . . . Here we learn that it is not enough to serve God with all of our might and strength. He who looks into our hearts and knows our minds demands more than this. In order to stand blameless before God at the last day, we must also serve him with all our heart and mind.

(Dallin H. Oaks, Pure in Heart [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1988], 38–49)


**The following was taken from Doctrinal Insights of the Book of Mormon