“A religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary unto life and salvation.”
But the sacrifice of what and for how long? Well, God wants it all. He wants to give us his all and requires our all in return. By the medium of the sacrifice of all earthly things” we come to know that we “are doing the things that are well pleasing in the sight of God.” Yet it’s so easy to forget and set into our comfortable complacency as Brigham Young noted,
“Should we live in peace year after year, how long would it be before we were glued to the world? Our affections would be so fastened to the things of the world that it would be . . . contrary to our feelings to attend to anything but our own individual concerns to make ourselves rich.”
Brigham Young, in Journal of Discourses, 5:294
“When a man has offered in sacrifice all that he has for the truth’s sake, not even withholding his life, and believing before God that he has been called to make this sacrifice because he seeks to do his will, he does know, most assuredly, that God does and will accept his sacrifice and offering and that he [does] not seek his face in vain. Under these circumstances, then, he can obtain the faith necessary for him to lay hold on eternal life.”
In contrast, “those who have not made this sacrifice to God do not know” that the course of their life is pleasing to God. Rather, “it is a matter of doubt and uncertainty in their mind.” And those “whose minds are under doubts and fears cannot have unshaken confidence” in God, which leaves them with weak faith. When that happens, they “will not be able to contend against all the opposition, tribulations, and afflictions which they will have to encounter in order to be . . . joint heirs with Christ Jesus; and they will grow weary in their minds, and the adversary will have power over them.
Source: Lectures on Faith (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1985), 69, 71