Have we taken to heart the invitation to “rend that veil of unbelief which doth cause you to remain in your awful state of wickedness, and hardness of heart, and blindness of mind” (Ether 4:15)? Says Isaiah: “None calls upon your name, or rouses himself to take hold of you. For you have hidden your face from us and enfeebled us at the hand of our iniquities” (Isaiah 64:7). Says the Lord: “I was available to those who did not inquire of me; I was accessible to those who did not seek me. I said, Here am I; I am here, to a people that did not invoke my name” (Isaiah 65:1).
Given that Isaiah describes our current state—that as a people we have not rent the veil of our unbelief—what is the key to our doing so before societal events spiral out of control and we are left to mourn procrastinating the day of our salvation from worldwide calamities? If once there existed a time among us when “the veil was taken from our minds, and the eyes of our understanding were opened” (Doctrine & Covenants 110:1), when “ye call upon my name for revelations, and I give them unto you” (Doctrine & Covenants 82:1), why isn’t it the case now?
When we define what Moroni means by “rending the veil”—which he himself did as “Jesus Christ hath shown you unto me” (Mormon 8:35)—we discover that it is nothing less than seeing what the brother of Jared saw: “Come unto me, O ye Gentiles, and I will show unto you the greater things, the knowledge which is hid up because of unbelief” (Ether 4:13). That “unbelief” includes “taking lightly”—and thus not comprehending—the Book of Mormon and the words of Isaiah it teaches, for which we are still “under condemnation” (Doctrine & Covenants 84:54–57).
Says Jesus: “When they shall have received this [the Book of Mormon], which is expedient that they should have first, to try their faith, and if it shall so be that they shall believe these things [the Book of Mormon] then shall the greater things be made manifest unto them. And if it so be that they will not believe these things, then shall the greater things be withheld from them, unto their condemnation. Behold, I was about to write them, all which were engraven upon the plates of Nephi, but the Lord forbade it, saying: I will try the faith of my people” (3 Nephi 26:9–11).
Moroni identifies several key steps in this process: “They shall not go forth unto the Gentiles until the day that they shall repent of their iniquity, and become clean before the Lord. And in that day that they shall exercise faith in me, saith the Lord, even as the brother of Jared did, that they may become sanctified in me, then will I manifest unto them the things which the brother of Jared saw, even to the unfolding unto them all my revelations, saith Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of the heavens and of the earth, and all things that in them are” (Ether 4:6–7).
And again: “When ye shall rend that veil of unbelief which doth cause you to remain in your awful state of wickedness, and hardness of heart, and blindness of mind, then shall the great and marvelous things which have been hid up from the foundation of the world from you—yea, when ye shall call upon the Father in my name, with a broken heart and a contrite spirit, then shall ye know that the Father hath remembered the covenant which he made unto your fathers, O house of Israel. And then shall my revelations which I have caused to be written by my servant John be unfolded in the eyes of all the people” (Ether 4:15–16).
The parallel words when ye shall and then shall reveal the key to rending the veil—that is, after we are sanctified and are exercising faith in Jesus: It is to “call upon the Father” in the name of Jesus “with a broken heart and a contrite spirit.” But what is it that we should call upon the Father for? For ourselves only? Here too the Brother of Jared provides the pattern. Did he not “call upon the name of the Lord for his brethren who were with him” (Ether 2:15) as do proxy saviors under the terms of the Davidic Covenant who intercede with God for their people’s protection?