“They Have Joy in Their Works for a Season”

Joseph F. McConkie, Robert L. Millet

Compare D&C 22:2-3. God allows even the wicked to take temporary pleasure in their works of wickedness and their worldly life-styles, but he knows that ultimately wickedness cannot and will not produce lasting happiness and eternal joy.

Some may experience a degree of happiness in following worldly standards because their level of understanding and behavior harmonizes with those standards.

But as their understanding of the ideals of Christlike living is increased—as it will be for all mankind as they are taught the gospel in this life or the next—and when all knees bow in sacred deference to Christ, the discrepancy between their mortal behavior and the gospel ideals will be so great as to destroy their mortal, short lived pleasure in their wicked works (see Job 2:5; Helaman 13:36-38; Mormon 2:13).

A fulness of joy—lasting eternal happiness—man be obtained only through obedience to those principles of the gospel that leads “the man of Christ in a strait and narrow course across that everlasting gulf of misery” (Helaman 3:29) to that eternal life which yields the light of God’s full joy (see D&C 93:33-34; D&C 138:15-17).

Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 4