Sep 24

Quotes about “Mists of Darkness” (Lehi’s Dream)


being deceived temptations lds quotesLehi’s vision of the Tree of Life is one of my favorite stories in the Book of Mormon. I love studying it! I’ve been having fun compiling quotes from different church leaders about the different parts of the dream (i.e. the iron rod, great and spacious building, etc.) I love running across talks and quotes that provide new insights about what each thing symbolizes and how it applies to our day 🙂


So here are a bunch of quotes about the “mists of darkness” I’ve gathered. Enjoy!



Quotes about the Mists of Darkness (from Lehi’s Tree of Life vision):

 mist of darkness quotes lds tree of life

“You are living in a world where mists of moral and spiritual darkness surround you and where the adversary is seeking the souls of men through all manner of iniquity.” (Sharon G. Samuelson)



Some of these mists of darkness, or temptations that Satan uses to obscure the path to eternal life, are specifically directed at women. He makes chastity and moral purity appear old-fashioned. He has made motherhood seem less important. He has been successful in confusing women about their roles in the Lord’s divine plan.” (Mary N. Cook)



“The family has an advantage in the first eight years of a child’s life. In those protected years, because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ, Satan’s use of the mists of darkness to hide the path to return home is blocked. In those precious years the Lord helps families by calling Primary workers to help strengthen children spiritually. He also provides holders of the Aaronic Priesthood to offer the sacrament. In those sacramental prayers, the children hear the promise that they may someday receive the Holy Ghost as a guide if they are obedient to God’s commandments. As a result, they are fortified to resist temptation when it comes and then, sometime in the future, to go to the rescue of others.” (President Henry B. Eyering)



“When those mists of darkness enveloped the travelers in Lehi’s vision of the tree of life, it enveloped all of the participants—the righteous as well as the unrighteous, the young along with the elderly, the new convert and seasoned member alike. In that allegory all face opposition and travail, and only the rod of iron—the declared word of God—can bring them safely through. We all need that rod. We all need that word. No one is safe without it, for in its absence any can “[fall] away into forbidden paths and [be] lost,” as the record says. (Jeffrey R. Holland)


Similar quote, but worded differently:

“In Lehi’s dream an already difficult journey gets more difficult when a mist of darkness arises, obscuring any view of the safe but narrow path his family and others are to follow. It is imperative to note that this mist of darkness descends on all the travelers—the faithful and the determined ones (the elect, we might even say) as well as the weaker and ungrounded ones. The principal point of the story is that the successful travelers resist all distractions, including the lure of forbidden paths and jeering taunts from the vain and proud who have taken those paths.” (Jeffrey R. Holland)



“Mists of darkness were a nightmare symbol to ancient Arab poets.” (John Bytheway)



“Invariably darkness is given as the main source of terror… and the culminating horror is almost always a ‘mist of darkness,’ a depressing mixture of dust, and clammy fog, which, added to the night, completes the confusion of any who wander in the waste. Quite contrary to what one would expect, these dank mists are described by travelers in all parts of Arabia, and al-Ajajj, one of the greatest of early desert poets, tells how a ‘mist of darkness’ makes it impossible for him to continue a journey to Damascus.” (Hugh Nibley)



“Lehi describes not just a mist in the darkness, but a mist of darkness.” (John Bytheway)



“A thick darkness creates a sort of ‘blindness,’ not only making it difficult to see, but isolating travelers from others on the path. The effect is loneliness, and the decision to continue or give up becomes an individual one.” (John Bytheway)



“Before the mist of darkness arose, the rod of iron was an unused benefit—with the mist, it becomes the only way to make progress.” (John Bytheway)



Since the building is up high ‘in the air,’ it is the only thing the mists of darkness allow us to see—Satan wants to hide everything else, especially the tree and the rod of iron; he wants us to see only the building and notice the mocking and scoffing.” (John Bytheway)



While the mists of darkness made it difficult to see, there is nothing in the dream which impaired the travelers’ ability to hear. The nearer they came to the tree of life, the more mocking they heard from the great and spacious building.” (John Bytheway)



“The river running closely by the path represents the depths of hell. It is ever present, waiting to claim any who are careless or rebellious. Often this river sends up mists of darkness, which are the temptations of the devil. These mists obscure our vision and make the path seem a little slippery and unsure.” (Cheryl C. Lant)



“We each will experience our own distractions and ‘mists of darkness.’ Satan knows us, and he wants us. He will do everything in his power to divert us from our goal. He wants to destroy our purpose.” (Cheryl C. Lant)



“Here is the next question I would like each of us to ask: What are my mists of darkness? Satan knows each of us well. He knows each of our strengths and he knows our weaknesses. Satan knows how to press our mortal buttons. And believe me, he is doing it at every opportunity. The way he tries to get me may be different from the way he tries to get you. But he is very good at finding our weak spots and hitting hard. What is it for you? Maybe it is discouragement or self-doubt. Maybe it is laziness. Or it could be influencing you to let a healthy curiosity lead you to doubting your own convictions. Maybe the mist is procrastination. Or it could be anger. It could be allowing Satan to gain power over you through horrible addictions to substances or pornography.”  (Cheryl C. Lant)



“I don’t know about you, but I have always envisioned the path as being on relatively flat terrain. While the scriptures tell us time and again the path is strait and narrow, it doesn’t say anything about it being level. If my experience is any indication, those who walk the path will be going down some steep inclines, up some rugged ravines, and across some raging rivers. It’s not just that the mists of darkness make it difficult to see the path—the path you are on will not always be smooth or level and your journey will not always be easy. Nevertheless, staying on the path is the only way back to our Heavenly Father.” (J. Matthew Shumway)



“In recent months a satanic attack has been launched against the young men and women of this Church. The leaders of this attack are largely apostates who seek to make people miserable like unto themselves. . . .Beware of such vipers, such faith pickpockets. They pretend to distill upon you corrective truths, when in reality they are stirring up ‘mists of darkness’ which serve only to blind eyes, harden hearts, and lead precious souls away from the true and living God.” (Carlos E. Asay)



Television, magazines, pulp novels, the Internet—these comprise a familiar litany of those media influences that thrust before us the vilest lusts and most insidious wiles of the adversary. Enticing and addicting, they cause many to lose their way—even ‘the very elect,’ as Jesus said (Matthew 24:24)—much as those seen by Lehi in his dream became lost in ‘an exceedingly great mist of darkness’ (1 Nephi 8:23). Even our very homes are no longer an automatic refuge from such things. It is as though these mists aggressively chase us, like the ancient destroying angel, seeping in through cracks in the doors and the windows, over the transom, and across the threshold. They are before us with the single touch of a remote control button or a computer keystroke. Like the ancient Israelites, our only protection is in the blood of the Lamb. But we are past the day when we can merely paint the blood of a sheep on our doorposts as protection against the onslaught of this modern destroying angel. Our devotion to the Lamb must be inscribed on the ‘fleshy tables of the heart’ (2 Corinthians 3:3)—an endeavor more easily spoken of than accomplished in today’s world.”  (Lance B. Wickman)


“It is when we are lost in the mists of darkness and cannot find our way that we most desperately need the influence of the Lord. Nowhere in all of the scriptural injunctions on prayer do we find the suggestion that we must first be perfect in order to communicate with God.” (M. Russell Ballard)


“I have often thought of the mists of darkness as a deep fog. I have been in a deep fog a few times. Basically I could not see anything except a very few feet in front of me. Driving a car or even walking in a deep fog can be extremely scary. However, sometimes I think that the mists on the path can be even darker than a fog. Have you ever been deep inside a cave? I have taken tours through several caves; inside it is completely dark. My eyes could never adjust and I could never see anything at all, even two inches in front of my eyes. I imagine that sometimes the mists of darkness are that dark. The mists represent the temptations of the devil. And when travelers are overcome by the mists and leave the strait and narrow path, they can get lost on broad roads or even fall in the river of filthy water, which represents the depths of hell.” (Glade Tew)



“Today, we need to cling with all of our might, hold fast, because the temptations of the devil, the mists of darkness are just too great. They are like a great tsunami.”  (Glade Tew)



“How strong are the mists of darkness in your life? Do you want the power to resist temptation and overcome deception? Then read the Book of Mormon. Study the Book of Mormon.” (Glade Tew)



“The great mists of darkness arise in our lives at various times and take many forms. Sometimes they are great temptations and trials, but most often they are very subtle to the point it is hardly noticeable that our grip on the iron rod has loosened.” (Kevin Miyasaki)



“It may be the mists of ingratitude or entitlement that blind you from seeing the small and simple means the Lord uses to mold you. . .Sometimes the mist of darkness is how we see our outward appearance. We may think our hair is horrible, our walk weird, our shape unsightly, or our voice undesirable. There are countless comparisons we can see in others and instantly judge ourselves as inadequate. The beauty of our spirit is blinded by the focus on the tabernacle of our body. There are the foggy times when we face disease, defects, and death in our personal lives or those we love. Or there are the mists that come from our lack of confidence. Spiritual sight impairment is evident anytime our thoughts, actions, and words are contrary to the will and mind of Christ. I invite you to pray to have the Lord reveal your spiritual blind spots. If you ask in faith, he will provide insights so your blindness can be revealed.” (Kevin Miyasaki)
“Mists of darkness are a vital part of God’s plan. Our spiritual blindness causes us to yearn to see that which is unseen to the natural eyes. We learn that things of the spirit can only be seen when relying upon the atonement and healing power of the Savior.”  (Kevin Miyasaki)



“To navigate through these mists of darkness we need the iron rod, which represents the word of God (see 1 Nephi 15:23–24). We must study and understand the truths and commandments found in the scriptures. We must listen carefully to the words of our latter-day prophets, whose teachings will give us guidance, direction, and protection. And we must hold to the standards found in For the Strength of Youth.” (Mary N. Cook)



“The enemy and his angels are trying to distract us. Their purpose is to encourage us to deviate from the covenants that we have made with the Lord, causing us to lose sight of our eternal inheritance. They know well our Heavenly Father’s plan for His children, for they were present with us in that great Council in Heaven when it was all presented. They try to take advantage of our weaknesses and frailties, deceiving us with ‘mists of darkness …, which blindeth the eyes, and hardeneth the hearts of the children of men, and leadeth them away into broad roads, that they perish and are lost.’ ” (Elder Ulisses Soares)

How to combat/avoid the mists of darkness:


“Light dispels darkness. When light is present, darkness is vanquished and must depart. More importantly, darkness cannot conquer light unless the light is diminished or departs. When the spiritual light of the Holy Ghost is present, the darkness of Satan departs.” (Robert D. Hales)
“I testify that we can avoid the mists of darkness that lead to personal apostasy by repenting of our sins, overcoming offense, eliminating faultfinding, and following our Church leaders. We can also avoid those mists by humbling ourselves, forgiving others, keeping our covenants, partaking of the sacrament worthily each week, and strengthening our testimonies through prayer, daily scripture study, temple attendance where possible, magnifying our Church callings, and serving our fellowmen. We need to be concerned and watchful in order to avoid the mists of darkness that can lead to personal apostasy.”  (Elder Claudio D. Zivic)


“There is no shortcut to eternal salvation. Snares, pitfalls, and mists of darkness will come into your lives. I’m sure you have experienced some already. You will run into difficulties, but if you hold very tightly to the iron rod of righteousness, you will receive blessings and protection from the Lord.” (Sharon G. Samuelson)
“When adversity comes, don’t let something you don’t fully understand unravel everything you do know. Be patient, cling to truth; understanding will come. Trials are like great mists of darkness that can blind our eyes and harden our hearts. Unless we are ‘continually holding fast’ to the word of God and living it, we will become spiritually blinded rather than spiritually minded. Search the Book of Mormon and the words of the living prophets every day, every day, every day! It’s the key to spiritual survival and avoiding deception. Without it, we are spiritually lost.” (Elder Kevin W. Pearson)



Christ is your light and He will show you the way through the happy times and the mists of darkness. You never need to feel alone or forsaken.” (Sharon G. Larsen)



“You are never lost when you can see the temple. The temple will provide direction for you and your family in a world filled with chaos. It is an eternal guidepost which will help you from getting lost in the ‘mist of darkness.'” (Elder Gary E. Stevenson)



“There is a quality of faith which develops as we focus all of our heart, might, mind, and strength. It is seen and felt in the eyes of a great missionary, a valiant and virtuous young woman, and righteous mothers, fathers, and grandparents. It can be seen in the lives of individuals young and old, in every land and culture, speaking every language, in every circumstance and station in life. It is the ‘eye of faith’ spoken of by the prophet Alma (see Alma 5:15–26)—the ability to focus and be steadfast, continually holding fast to true principles, nothing wavering, even when the mist of darkness confronting us is exceedingly great. This quality of faith is exceedingly powerful.” (Elder Kevin W. Pearson)
Discernment is a light of protection and direction in a world that grows increasingly dark. You and I can press forward safely and successfully through the mist of darkness and have a clear sense of spiritual direction. Discernment is so much more than recognizing right from wrong. It helps us distinguish the relevant from the irrelevant, the important from the unimportant, and the necessary from that which is merely nice. The gift of discernment opens to us vistas that stretch far beyond what can be seen with natural eyes or heard with natural ears. Discerning is seeing with spiritual eyes and feeling with the heart—seeing and feeling the falsehood of an idea or the goodness in another person. Discerning is hearing with spiritual ears and feeling with the heart—hearing and feeling the unspoken concern in a statement or the truthfulness of a testimony or doctrine.” (Elder David A. Bednar)



“The mist of darkness will cover you at times so much that you will not be able to see your way even a short distance ahead. You will not be able to see clearly. But you can feel your way. With the gift of the Holy Ghost, you can feel your way ahead through life. Grasp the iron rod, and do not let go. Through the power of the Holy Ghost, you can feel your way through life (see 3 Nephi 18:25; D&C 9:8).” (Boyd K. Packer)



“I remember learning about Lehi’s vision in the Book of Mormon when I was quite young. I could picture the iron rod leading to the tree of life, and the frightening mist of darkness that swept around the path leading to the tree. I understood that if you held on to the rod, no matter how scary the darkness was, you wouldn’t get lost.” (Jeffrey R. Holland)
“There may be moments of doubt or discouragement when we feel as though we are enveloped in the mists of darkness. Do not underestimate what we each can receive from the solemn, sure testimony of the Savior borne by His special witnesses. That witness, received in a spirit of faith, will strengthen us in moments of difficulty and give us a firm footing as we move along the path toward the tree of life. Hold fast to the words of the prophets. Ponder them. Believe them. Trust them. Follow them.” (Neil L. Andersen)



“Traveling through mists of darkness is a completely normal part of God’s plan. He allows us to experience difficulties from time to time so that we can completely depend on Him and His Son. The key is to cling to the iron rod.” (Juventa Vezzanir)

lds quotes about temptations