Come Follow Me Don’t Miss This Doctrine and Covenants 2; Joseph Smith—History 1:27–65 – powered by Happy Scribe
Hi there, I’m David Butler. I’m Emily Freeman.
This is Don’t Miss This.
Welcome back to the basement and the chalkboard. We’re back. We’re home.
Hopefully you had a good field trip with us last time to the Smith family farm and the sacred grove. And was that awesome to kind of just see all of that and the in the hurricane, there’s no way I’m down here.
We’re so happy about that. We started recording that place and the devil blew his mind. There was he was the big bad wolf. And it was we had such wild weather the whole time we were there. But it would like stop at least enough for us to film. So we had God’s favor, you know, for some of those ones, which was awesome.
But here we are back at the board. Our next field trip you can look forward to, by the way, is the Susquehanna River. So we’ll be there for section thirteen. So and another house there, another surprise. So anyway, I look forward to that. So many good things.
Yeah, I feel free to talk about, like from where we were. How many years to where we are now in this lesson and what’s happened in the meantime? So he was 14 when he went in the girl, if that’s the last time we saw Joseph. And now we’re going to go back into we’ll start with Joseph Smith history and then we’ll do Section two at the end. And so this is like years later. Yeah, we jump into now.
So Spring 18, 20 is the first vision experience. And then it’s not until the fall of 1823 that he sort of picks up again.
So Joseph Smith, history starting in verse 27. Then you’ll see in a little bit how Section two of the doctrine covenants is an offshoot of it and why they get put together in this same lesson. It will make sense at the end, why they why they end up together. But it’s been a couple of years since then. And you kind of want to think to yourself, what was that like for him to have this this magnificent experience, feel some of his questions, put at ease, but then a million more given to him?
Right. Like he doesn’t like he walks out with some yes. Piece, but then. Like what? Yeah.
Well, any leaves you remember with not a lot of knowledge he leaves out of the grove with just do nothing. Right. That’s what happens.
And then he lives his life.
And it’s so interesting to me that the reason why he goes into the grove is actually to pray for forgiveness from his sins. And when we meet Joseph again right now, it’s going to be that same thing is happening. It’s been three years or whatever, give or take. And he’s going to enter back into this prayer with the Lord to ask forgiveness for his sins. And you will a little bit wonder if there’s part of him that’s like, OK, I left the grove and now what?
What am I doing? Yeah. And and how the Lord came the last time is because I went through that process of turning again toward him. So if I do that again, will the next step come in?
What I need to do, which is just one more piece to that, that puzzle, that rebranding of the word repentance that seems to the president, Nelson seems to be taking the charge, you know, of. And just it’s interesting that repentance opens up the door to these connections with God, these marvelous experiences, ones that we put at the top of the journal.
This is a message from musing and marveling. And it’s it’s powerful that repentance is opens up the door to it, that imperfections, weaknesses are kind of the gateway to to this beautiful connection point with God.
And I love that. Here is this seventeen year old kid who’s saying, what is my work like? What is my purpose? What should I be doing in the world right now?
And you love it. You think about the 17 year olds, you know, or eight year olds or 16 year olds, that that’s often their same question.
What’s my purpose? Who am I? What what do I bring to the world right now?
And I love reading this whole lesson through those eyes that a boy who kneels down and says, OK, here’s what is not working in my life right now, but what is my purpose?
What is my standing before God? So maybe.
And heaven. Yeah, well, I guess before we jump into that, in twenty seven Joseph Smith history in twenty seven ops, we have a picture of the board in the newsletter now every week, if you don’t know that. So if you’re still looking for like hey I want to be able to see the board better, it’s in the newsletter a picture. Twenty seven is kind of where the where we start. But he just says he gives really good advice, which I think is he says, I just continued my common vocations of life, that I have this experience.
What do I do next? I just kept living life is what I did. But at the end of 2011, I continued to affirm what I already knew. And I think that’s such great advice.
It’s like don’t let go of the experiences that you’ve had, you know, even if there’s questions associated with it. I had that experience. This I know, but I’m just going to continue living my life until the next step comes over.
Just so powerful about how revelation works. And if you’re keeping track in your journal, that’s a really great lesson. Right there is at the very last line of verse, twenty seven is receiving that revelation and then continuing on, but waiting for the next step. And it feels like on this night Joseph was like I he must have felt a stirring. I’m ready for the next step and I know how to enter into this conversation with God. And he just goes back to that pattern.
And even if it’s been three years since you felt like you’ve had a significant experience, it doesn’t make that first experience void or invalid. So it’s still true. You still heard. It’s still right, even if you’re in a waiting place. Yes, that’s so good. So at the top, we’re going to write down remember, we’re collecting these what was the prayer, the need, the situation actuation?
I thought that said supplication.
And I was like, well, I guess it really is that that leads into what’s going to end up being section two. But there’s to this time. Yeah.
So what you’re going to find out at the end, we’re going to put all these pieces together. This is going to be Moroni visit to Joseph. Right. What you’re going to find out is he’s going to introduce a new concept to Joseph A. covenantal concept to him that he’s unaware of. We learned from Section one and from Joseph’s words about the first vision that the new and everlasting covenant need to needed to be restored.
President Nelson taught a couple of years ago that September 21st, 1823, is when Joseph first starts to learn about that covenantal concept, that whole idea that’s going to frame the whole restoration. I think by the end of this, he still has no clue about why he’s 17 years old in his jammies when all of this happens. And I think he’s not going to quite get it. But looking back, we’re going to be able to see this this moment and like, oh, this is paramount.
This is laying a really, really great foundation for a covenant relationship with God. So that’s one. But Joseph probably doesn’t recognize that. And don’t you love that?
That’s probably true for us. Oh, for sure. Like you think about what was it that President Nelson wanted to say about the conference that we had six months ago that it was going to be unforgettable? Yes. Well, what’s the word?
Why can’t I think of the word that if not a capstone, but it was going to be this. Everyone’s going to write in and tell us the world is going to come to me in just a minute.
But I remember after that conference thinking, well, why was this going to be a turning point? Why was this moment the turning point of everything going forward? And I think we’ll probably look back to that conference and be able to see it years from now, the same way we can see here for Joseph. But when Joseph woke up and got out of bed that next morning, still in his pajamas, he probably had no idea of what the scope was about.
Yeah. And and I think that’s true about revelation, that sometimes that what comes we have no idea what’s about to be propelled from that one moment. Yeah.
So what you’re going to see in these verses and in this section, really, as John Taylor said, the whole gospel of Jesus Christ can be summed up in Section two. Have fun with that one. And just really this. Oh, here is the beauty and the need and the answer for the restoration. This is the heart and soul of the whole restoration story.
But it also answers the prayer in need of a 17 year old, yes, in his bedroom, in his pajamas, right.
Is what is the other one? And it’s that one, he says in verse 28, where he just says, like, I’d been in a lot of temptations and I 029.
We’ll talk about 20 in just a second. I went to prayer in my supplication. Oh, there it is. It is a supplication for two things, for forgiveness of my sins. And second, I wanted to know my standing before God like that was there’s this bigger thing going on. The all the angels in heaven are kind of like perched over the edge.
I got what I got the word. Yeah, the hinge point. Yeah. Everybody I remember I was all the angels are just hovering, waiting for this pinch point moment.
Right. But what’s really happening inside Joseph’s soul is am I forgiven of my sins? I shouldn’t be acting like this. I know.
And what is my standing before God and what’s my next step? Right. Really, what happens next? So that’s where we want to jump in. And as we jump into this conversation that takes place that night, that’s where we want to focus right now is what is the importance of that conversation? And actually, why does it become a hinge point from that moment forward?
So as he goes into this conversation, he talks about the last three years haven’t been easy. He’s been persecuted by those who should have been his friends. And I bet some of those people he’s thinking about are the religious leaders of the day who who should have been friends to God and then they would have been friends to Joseph. And how confusing that must have been. And I love what he says.
And they’re just like and if they thought I was a crazy person, shouldn’t they have ministered to the crazy Catholic, you know, is like they all call me crazy, but like, you should take care of your crazy. Yes. You know, this is so true.
And then he describes how he sees himself. And we’ve got a little place in the book, in the journal for you to write down. It’s so fun to just take a minute and write down. How does Joseph view himself? And you’re going to find that in verse twenty eight of the Joseph Smith history. He says this I frequently fell into many foolish errors. I displayed the weaknesses of youth, the foibles of human nature, which I’m sorry to say led me to diversed temptations.
I was offensive. Those things were offensive in the sight of God.
But it makes me wonder if he felt like this is what my life looks like is is just a little bit maybe offensive to God. I do love that. He says there weren’t any, like, great or malignant sins because I didn’t have that disposition. But I was guilty of levity and I was jovial.
And I wasn’t consistent in the character with what ought to be maintained by one who was called of God as I had been. And I love that. That’s how Joseph sees himself. If he was to say, this is what I looked like on the night that I went to bed on September 21st, this is me. That’s who I am. And I love contrasting that with who does God see in that moment? And we get to see that in verse thirty three.
And I think this would be a really cool thing maybe on this notes page or somewhere else in a journal to do this same sort of contrasting. You know, if you were to make a list right now like this is the way I see myself and it wouldn’t be a super positive list like Josef’s like week and young and condemned and overlooked and all of those things. But to look to scripture, to give you the answer to the other box and to think, to pause and let the world, in your own mind, get out of the way to like just think like, what is God see in you and think of you.
And Joseph learns that in thirty three, right at the very beginning, it says there this light comes in this room. And I just think that might even be the first answer. Like he just like felt in this place of darkness. But then light comes in like happened in the first vision and he gets called by name again. You know, for all these years, people have been persecuting him. No one took care of me. I didn’t have any friends, you know, whatever it was, no one invited me.
No one came to my 15th birthday party because of the things that I said. And all of a sudden this angelic being comes in and calls him by name. I always think sometimes. Who’s more excited on this night? Yes. Like Joseph to see Moroni or Moroni to see Joseph, you know, because Moroni has been chomping at the bit for now 100000 years or whatever it is.
But he says he calls me by my name and he said.
I came from the presence of God because God has it work for you to do, and we’re going to get into what that work is. But there’s this line here in 2003 where he says your name should be had for good and evil among all nations, Kindred’s and Tung’s. It will be spoken good and evil among all people. And I wonder if you thought to first of all, how many countries could he list off?
You know, if you were like in a place scattergories or something with Joseph and he doesn’t probably even know that many languages or countries or people talk.
Or is it more than how many days I was born and I went to Boston for my leg, you know, and it’s kind of like, oh, wait, wait a second.
That’s oh, are you what? You know, that would have been confusing.
But I think one thing that’s really powerful about that is right at the beginning of Joseph’s ministry, we learned two things. One, this is the work of almighty God and of heaven and Moroni. I could have said and you and I, Joseph, are instruments in that work, each with our own responsibilities. But second, this is a work that is going to fill the world right from the beginning. He tells him all nations, all languages, all Kindred’s and people are going to know of the truths that God wants to give to the Earth through you.
This is not going to be an upstate New York kind of thing. It’s for the world.
And I love when I teach this, especially if you’re teaching teenagers or sometimes when I’m with a group of women, I love to say to them, OK, take these two boxes and go on the first one and read through that verse twenty eight and write down how Joseph sees himself and then go over to when Moroni comes and write down what God sees in the other box. And I let him take the time to really go through and do that. And then I say to them, which one was true on that night, which of those things was true?
And it’s so interesting because both both are true.
And what I love is the lesson that it teaches us that God can work with 17 year old boys and do amazing things and not just 17 year old boys, but with each of us, even when we see weakness or what’s in us, just that reminder of I have a work for you to do and you’re going to make a difference in this world is so powerful. I can remember several years ago a boy coming over to my house and bringing me a sack of items from his bedroom that probably were not appropriate to be having in a boy’s bedroom and saying to me, this is who I am.
This is where my life is now, and just feeling like a failure. And we had it all set out on the kitchen counter. And I can remember him standing up and opening my fridge to look for something to eat. And as I stood on the other side of the counter and I looked at all of that stuff on the counter, and my first thought was, what do we do?
What do we do now? In fact, I think I even texted you in that moment. I was like, what do I do?
And then I looked up before even a text could come back. I looked up. And what happened is I saw the potential in that boy. I saw the good that was within him there. And I can remember saying to him, God has a work for you and it’s bigger than you or I even understand.
And the smartest thing for you to do today besides all of this in the garbage is to start preparing to get your patriarchal blessing, because what we want to know is what God has in mind for you in this moment. And that was a powerful turning point for that boy. Now, the change didn’t come in a month. We both know the change took three years to happen for that boy.
And I I think that is kind of common for turning a life and adjusting to life.
And actually, I should probably say that journey is still ongoing for that boy. That still is a process, a work in process. And exalting someone is a work in process.
And there are Lehi everything in a garbage bag out on the counter moments. And there are moments when you hear God whisper and say God has a work for me to do.
Well, and I think you see that in Joseph’s story almost in between. What will be this lesson in next week’s lesson? Are these years of mentoring in these years of.
Of growing and experiencing it and change again four for Joseph before he really engages, you know, full time and so good that great work. But so that’s just such a powerful lesson. I love the idea of both of those can be true at the same time. Right, that God is your you can still begin today in this great work as a weak and tempted and, you know, and so he does.
And so the instruction begins on the very night that Joseph goes and says, I want to know my standing before you. And then that night the instruction begins. Right. Right when you turn. OK, let’s go.
Yes. And really, it’s not just a little instruction tonight. When I grew up, what I learned about September 21st is that Moroni came to Joseph.
That’s what I remember.
I can always remember the blessings. Well, that’s what it’s about. Every September 21st, he puts that song on his Instagram, everyone. And then he puts a picture of Joseph up and you just never forget it in your life.
And and we talk about Moroni came, but we never really talk about what Moroni talk.
And that’s actually like the best part of this entire lesson is what Joseph is given on that night on September 21st.
So we want to like dive into what does Joseph find out is going to be his great work. And we want to think about that. So we’re going to start out in verse thirty four and thirty five.
And there’s more to this. Let’s try and find that link that all of writes, like all the scriptures that Moroni quoted to him that night and we’ll put it in the newsletter. Oh, get better. Read it.
But Joseph wants to mention a couple and I think it’s important to look at the ones that Joseph actually like wanted to hear and highlights. And he’s going to highlight one, two, three, four, five different like messages from Moroni or next steps.
Right. Five different next steps.
So the first one is going to be that he’s going to repeat three, three more times, three or four for this and then three more times.
So the first thing he says in thirty four is there’s going to be a book depository that was written on gold plate plates that’s going to talk about the inhabitants of this continent.
And it’s the fullness of the everlasting gospel is going to be contained in there. And also when he gets that book, there’s going to be a germ and Thomond that he’s going to have that’s going to help him to receive revelation and translate. That’s what’s number one.
So the first thing he says is in three point thirty five, the you’re going to be responsible in the translation of the Book of Mormon.
And let’s just say coming off of The Book of Mormon, you’re studying it for a full year. What is the message of that book? We have a little box there next set to just say, like, hold on just a second. That’s in each of these, like, little scriptures he’s going to share. There’s like an explosion of thoughts and information underneath each one. Right. So the first one is you’re going to trance like a book.
But let’s just think about what’s the message of that book? What promises and covenants does it entail? What is it?
What is it and what we’re going to talk about it next week in great detail.
But I’m just going to skip there really quick because you love the adits minimum of what the Book of Mormon teaches. It’s about the savior, the promises, the covenant, Israel to believe in the gospel, to rely on the merits of Christ and grace and what the atonement of Jesus Christ means to each of us, the power of repentance and continually turning again to God in a life invested in that covenant path and then salvation. That’s that’s like that’s this.
That’s what he’s about to give him. Right. That path.
No idea about that yet. But and also maybe this idea, the idea of teaching about our God that does not give up on the world, because when he’s done translating that book, it will end in a dumpster fire like it’s an absolute disaster at the end. And yet here is Moroni, a messenger from the same God, the messenger who buried that very book in the ground, who says God’s promises are not yet fulfilled. And that’s why I’m here.
And do you wonder, too, if Moroni a little bit was like, you know, how we get when we tell someone about the children who has never seen the chosen and we’re like, you are going to love this.
Do you think Moroni says, that you don’t even know what’s in the book? But I’m telling you right now you are going to love this book. Don’t you think he’s just bubbling with excitement so there’s no one No. Two is found in verse thirty six, and it’s going to be he’s going to quote part of the third chapter of Malachi and then the fourth and the last chapter of the same prophecy is what’s going to. Happened there, and in essence, what he’s going to tell them, we’re going to talk about this because we’re going to go to Section two at the end.
But right now, just so you can be filling out this, let’s say why Section two is a quotation of that Malikai verse that he gives here.
So that’s what Section two is going to be. Yeah.
So we’ll go into detail there. But in just short form, he’s going to be telling him. Joseph, let me tell you about come to Malakai with me, because one of your next steps is going to be the restoration of the priesthood, of covenants and of of temple ceilings and ordinances and all of the things that take place there. That’s your next step. Is that so? That’s what comes from Malachi. And we will go into detail there.
The third thing that he tells him is to go to the 11th chapter of Isaiah. And we thought it’d be really fun to go to some of these places with you because we rarely do so as you go to the 11th chapter of Isaiah and I like to just go to 11, 11, because it’s the whole chapter is so good. And when you read the whole chapter, it’s going to give you an idea of that encompasses everything. But in its short form, he says this it shall come to pass.
And that day, this will start. You have to start in 10, OK, where he says there will be this root of Jesse and it’s a record of Jesse, a root or a rod is like a shepherd would hold so out of into the hands of the stem of Jesse who is Jesus.
He will hold this rod, he will have this instrument in his hands. And what the work of that instrument is described in verse 11.
And that work is going to be that the Lord will set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left in. And he talks about from everywhere like that remnant is going to be gathered for from everywhere. So you love that Isaiah is going to prophesy about the gathering of Israel, the people coming back from all the four corners to this place and all of Chapter 11 is going to talk about that promise, what’s going to happen in that day?
And then we go where Joel to Excel X Chapter three, he quotes X, chapter three, verse 22 and 23, which is Peter, which I think Moroni meant to do 21.
Also y you just said when you talked about Jesus whom heaven must receive until the time of restitution, of all things which God had spoken by the mouth of all holy prophets since the world began. And then he quoted this word for Moses truly said it to the father, a prophet show the Lord your God rise up likened to me him show you here all things whatsoever. He’s just saying to you. So come to pass it. Every soul will hear these words of the prophet.
So he just starts talking about. That property offense and a restoration, a restoration of all things, yes, so a messenger.
So from Acts, we’re going to get the voice of a prophet coming back and through that voice of a prophet would be this restoration or this restitution.
But you love when our prophet today, President Nelson, says that restoration is still happening. Right. This is a living church. That restoration is ongoing and it happens through a prophet, that whole process.
And every time I read this, I think when Joseph maybe opened up the family Bible, I went to chapter three, I hope verse 25 also caught his eye where it says Lehi are the children of the prophets and of the covenant, which God made to our fathers, saying to Abraham, Through your see, will all the kingdoms of the earth be blessed? We’re going to come back to that idea. But it’s just in that same it’s right there.
And then you go to Joel and it’s going to be at the very end of chapter two in twenty eight. Yeah. He says, I will pour out my spirit and I love the thought of that because from this Book of Mormon and the Prophet and the restoration and the temple and all of these things that are being brought back is going to be this increase of the spirit working in God’s people.
And he talks about people dreaming dreams and all of these changes that are going to happen.
His spirit will be poured out and there will be wonders. And all of these things will happen in order that we would be prepared for when Jesus comes back again. And then there’s a really important part right in the very last verse where it says the Lord shall be delivered and in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the Lord has said, and in the remnant who the Lord shall call.
So the last thing he tells him is he’s going to build up a Zion People and Zion place that’s going to be part of his job.
So which will be a place of salvation and redemption, a place of deliverance.
And I love the idea is like it’ll be a call and to all people. And the work will happen in verse 29 through servants and it’ll happen through handmaids and through young men and young women and old men.
And everybody gets to be a part of this building up of Zion.
This Nephi goosebumps. And I’m thinking and Joseph’s just listening to all these verses think because our perspective is so awesome looking back.
And that’s what you love about Revelation, because Joseph is like now what? Don’t you think that’s why Moroni was like goes back? I don’t think he got it. It goes back down, tells it again, because in essence, what he says to Joseph on that night is, OK, Joseph, here’s your next step. You’re going to translate a book of scripture. You’re going to restore God’s power to the Earth and his covenant path, and you’re going to build temples where all of that’s going to take place.
You’re going to gather all of Israel from the entire world. You’re going to become a prophet who brings to pass this restoration, that’s going to set up this process that is going to continue until 2021. Yeah.
You know, this restoration process and you’re going to build up this city of Zion. That’s your next step. Now, I want you to think to yourself, what of those things was happening on the night of that day when Joseph woke up that next morning? Which of these things was happening in the world anywhere?
And isn’t it amazing that none not one thing.
And yet when you think about what things looked like when Joseph died and we think it’s so fun, we want to turn we’re just going to jump way ahead because it’s so fun to see if you go to Section 135 right now.
And this is a verse that John Taylor will write right after the martyrdom.
You might be familiar with it, but he catalogues some of the truths and powers and blessings that came through Joseph Smith during his lifetime in ministry.
And when you read that Rod in the hand of the Lord Jesus is the Lord’s work.
You think about September 21st and what had happened, and then you think about Section one thirty five, 1844. I wish I could do the math really fast.
Nineteen twenty, nineteen twenty thirty four minus. Yeah.
Neither of us are really good at math or science or anywhere else for that.
Twenty one twenty in twenty one years. Think about what happened and I just, I love just reading a little bit of verse three. Can I. I just read it up. Yes, I read about that and he says this Joseph Smith, the prophet and serve the Lord has done more, saved Jesus only for the salvation of men in this world than any other man that lived in it.
Oh, in the short space of the 20 years there was for one, John brought forth The Book of Mormon, which he translated by the gift and power of God was the means of publishing it on two continents has sent the fullness of the everlasting gospel, which it contained to the four corners of the Earth, has brought forth the revelations and commandments, which compose this book of doctrine and covenants and many other wise documents and instructions has gathered many thousands of the Latter day Saints, founded a great city and left a fame, a name that cannot be slain, who lived great, and he died great in the eyes of God and his people.
And it’s so remarkable to me that in 20 years he just says.
Yes, for this this work that came because of a dream when he was 17 years old, in his pajamas, in his bedroom. And don’t you want to say to the entire youth of the church, what does God have in store for you right now?
What does he have in store for you? I love that this lesson is happening right at the beginning of the new year when it is that time for thinking what’s the great work God has in store for me this year? What does it look like? I feel like if we just kneel down and pray and say, what’s my standing in your eyes right now and what do you need me to do this year? I think that same thing is going to happen when I think of him calling Joseph by name.
What I think is that he’s going to come into your story in a very personal way and say, this is the work I have for you under your roof, in your bedroom at this time. This is the personal work I have for you. And I love in the book Mormon when that message comes to those boys who are leaving on their mission and they say and it was a great work and I love when they say and assuredly it was great, whatever it is God has in mind for you.
And maybe it’s with a relationship, maybe it’s with a talent, maybe it’s with your the place you work. Maybe it has to do with sharing the gospel. Maybe it has to do with strengthening your family. Maybe it has to do with strengthening yourself. God has a great work that will be personal to you this year. And all we have to do is just what Joseph did.
Just ask, what’s my standing before you and what would you have me do right now? And then be prepared to write it down.
Yeah, and no mention of the red brick store and the restoration of the Relief Society, or you didn’t tell him about a move to Kirtland and the angelic visitors that will come there like he knows all about the season. But all he’s going to say to Joseph, and this is all done is, OK, go to the Hill. Yes. You know, and take a liver with you, you know, and that’s how it is in our lives, too, right?
God sees where this is all going and the great things that are going to be done that he’s going to do through us and with us. And and but the next step is just going to come.
And you might think the job he gives you sounds too simple for you. You might feel like just go to the Hill. I’ve been by that hill ten thousand times. Right. How many times have Joseph seen Kamora and take that lever and a shovel or whatever he took with him?
Yeah, he calls it the hill by my house. Yeah. That’s what he calls it is a give it a name.
And that’s where your great work might begin is by my house. Yes.
But you love the out of that small and simple thing, something amazing is going to happen.
So it would be fun to talk about now in Section two, because this is not just a purpose for Joseph, this is God’s purpose for all of us. This exalting process, that’s a promise for every single person who is a part of Covenant Israel, and that’s you and me and you.
It’s all of us.
And it’s fun to go to Section two because it hints right at this at a bigger we’ve got this box down here, the grand hope, like what is God’s grand and great purpose? What’s his great grand work? You know, when he looks down on the human family? This is a set of verses, by the way, that you can find in every one of the standard works. It’s in. It’s the last words spoken by Malachi, the prophet at the.
End of the Old Testament, Jesus quotes in the New Testament, he quotes it again to the Nephites in the Book of Mormon and then a great price. And here it is in the doctrine covenants. It’s in every one of the standard works. And we’ve just found when God repeats himself, that there’s probably a time to perk up your ears. There might be something here. Now, the words in it are a little bit cryptic, especially if you’re Joseph sitting in his room.
So we kind of want to unpack that a little bit. You could read it in one breath if you wanted to.
It’s so short. I’m not going to try. But listen, I want you.
But we wrote up the the kind of the key words there in your journal also that you might pick out and say, like, oh, I want to define what those are.
So here’s the way. So we can just point out, yeah, here’s here’s the whole thing. Right. So we just read the whole thing first. Now let’s unpack as you go. As you go, OK?
Behold, which is such a great word.
You know, it’s not one of our key words, but it really is like a word that’s just like, OK, announcement, you know, and unfolding right to here is something I need you to like, really take a look at to behold it.
OK, I the speaker here is the Lord. Right. That’s I will reveal. And to you now that you Moroni really could have looked at Joseph and winked at him and be like this time really, you know, but the general human family, the priesthood by the hand of Elijah, the prophet. Now, normally it will impact this when we get to the Susquehanna, when we talk about like the restoration of of priests that we like to like, tie it up really nicely into ironic priest democrazy precedent.
Normally, if you ask a Sunday school class today, like the priest by the hand of Elijah, no, I associate the priesthood with Peter James and John associate with John the Baptist. Right.
So and I was thinking about the priesthood, which can also be called the order of the Son of God. And that is what he really is going to lay out here. It’s not just the corms.
It’s not just know this is going to be an order of living after the manner of the son of God. That’s what he’s talking about. He’s laying out now a covenant path that is going to help us to live after the order or the man of God or the manner of the son of God.
And it’s going to come, he tells us through the Prophet Wright. That’s how it’s going to be laid out, is through the words of Malachi to begin with. But Elijah, sorry to begin with, but through the prophet, that’s the prophet’s job is to help us to realize that living after the order, which is the priesthood, which has the power to exalt. Right.
So when you see the priesthood there, what you want to think about is the full and complete usage of priesthood power on Earth.
And the capstone moment came actually through Elijah in the Kerlin Temple in 1836. Right. We can kind of mark that day when Elijah actually comes in and gives them to Joseph, the ceiling power. But that word ceiling power could be confused with like marriage ceiling. But ceiling power is the complete and full usage of of the entire priesthood. One of its central functions is for all of us to enter into a covenant relationship with God. Why?
So we love let’s just say when you’re writing that down, you want to write both of those. It’s the priesthood is the ceiling and the exalting power. That’s what’s coming back, is that power to perfect us and increase us and enable us to receive the fullness of the father.
OK, by Elijah. We don’t know why God decided to send Elijah. The Bible dictionary tells us he was the last one who held the ceiling power in Old Testament times. But we’ve had New Testament Times and other people who held it. But he just got that job because that was his work, I guess we could assume.
But he held those those the full usage of the priesthood, those keys. So he’s the one who actually comes before the great and dreadful Day of the Lord, which is the wrapping up day, the second coming, which maybe it’s tomorrow, and he shall plant in the hearts of the children, the promises made to the fathers. Now, there’s a couple groups of people here. The children are us. It’s you and me. It’s all of us.
He’s going to plant in the in our hearts the promises made to the fathers. In a second, there’s going to be their fathers. But the promises made to the fathers and the fathers are talking about the great patriarchs. Generally speaking, we’ve kind of wrapped up all of the father.
Into three, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, you’ll see that in the writing at The Book of Mormon, right? These are the fathers and the promises that he made to them are promises that he is going to plant into the hearts of us.
I love as we think about those promises, in the last conference, President Nelson gave us a challenge and the challenge was to go back through all scripture and look for the promises given to Covenant Israel. That’s the challenge for us, which I started the very next day gathering because I was like, that’s so interesting. Why why does he want us to gather those promises? And now I have this engineer sheet in my bedroom where I am listing the promises.
And we’re about halfway through right now. And I would say I probably have a hundred and ten promises listed on that sheet so far.
And that’s like a minimal amount. Like I’m trying to paraphrase most of them.
These covenants are these promises that were given to Covenant Israel and they started with and I think that’s part of the reason why we look at Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, because that’s where the promises started and at the very beginning, where they start being recorded in scripture.
Certainly they were given to Adam and Eve, Noah and his wife and others, but scripture starts laying them out.
Yes, these people were the same three times in a row, which is super helpful because you’re going to watch it happen for Abraham. And then almost the same phrasing again for Isaac and then the same phrasing again for Jacob that you start seeing. Oh, OK. Now I’m starting to figure out what the promises are, which my favorite, I will tell you of all of the promises and it is repeated over and over again in Scripture, in almost every chapter I read on the promises to come to Israel, one promise is constant and it’s I will be with them.
It’s that interesting. It’s everywhere. It’s repeated over and over again. And I think the reason why I love it is because, you know, I love that thought that the Lord will meet us where we are as we are, that he’s going to enter into our stories. And that’s actually a promise that is given to Covenant Israel.
But the other thing that we love to teach is what do we know about the god of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob? And we come to know him best within how he shows up in their story. And we love in Abraham. He shows up to bring a promise that Abraham thinks is impossible of happening in his lifetime. It’s a posterity and it’s a promise land and it’s this this promise to him that seems inconceivable at the time.
So when you think about Abraham, you think of a God who gives promises that are bigger than what you think could happen in your life.
And then you get the story of Isaac and probably his quintessential story, right. Is that is him up on Mariah. And and after he spared by the Angel, God provides forum and then a prophecy that one day he will provide a lamb, the lamb of God there. And we learn about a God who provides in moments of lack, in anticipation that God is going to provide the things that we need.
And then we meet Jacob. And you love Jacob, who was born. Remember, his name means deceiver, and we watch him struggle.
His entire life is a struggle of who should be in church, God or him, until it culminates with a wrestle that after that wrestle, he finally will allow God to prevail in his life.
He says, I will turn my life over to.
I love that he actually walks with a limp for the rest of his life as a memory of that lesson of that coming around. It’s just like what we talked about with Joseph at the beginning. Here was my weakness. Here are my errors here, my foibles. But God saw in Jacob Israel, right. That’s what God saw in Jacob. And he became a God who prevails. And we love that.
When you think about he will plant in our hearts and the promises made to the fathers, which is I I promise you, things you can’t even imagine. And I will not only promise, but I will provide, provide, and I will prevail in your life. You could encapsulate all the hundred and ten promises I’ve gathered so far into those three words. He is a God who promises, provide and prevails, and that’s a little bit what we’re learning right here, is he’s going to he’s going to remind us of that.
As you accept this covenant path, as you agree to be exalted, you don’t have to do that on your own.
That’s not something you actually are capable of on your own. I will come and walk the path with you. I will enter the story. I will be there.
And my job is to give promises that I will ensure will happen and provide and and prevail in your life.
Yeah, and that’s the very, very purpose of Covenant relationship, is to enter into a relationship to open up your heart and your life to that kind of God.
So when we talk about the story of the restoration, we’re talking about the story of this unfolding, of an opportunity for us to learn who he is and enter into that kind of relationship with him, to hand our hearts over to him and let him promise and provide and prevail in all of them. And the powers and opportunities and knowledge to do that are going to be the work of God in this dispensation like he has in every other one. I think it’s powerful to point out two things.
I love that they’re called the fathers instead of like the patriarchs or instead of like the great men of the past, because fathers implies that there are mothers, like by definition there has to be. And so I’m really happy about that usage of of that word. And he says, and when these promises that have been lost, they got lost through the apostasy, I’m going to bring who I am and what I can do back. And what’s going to happen is when they get planted in you, your hearts are going to turn.
And I like stopping there. I know that they’re going to turn to your fathers and your heart’s going to be turned to your children and your grandchildren and your ancestors, and that will happen. But I just love the idea of like when these promises are put in, your heart will turn. They will turn to him like something will happen inside your soul because of these promises and and what’s going to come to the world. And that’s really the grand hope, right, that that just this whole the whole human family turns to God and turns to each other and unites in in love.
That is his purpose, is I’m after the whole family and you’re all going to be saved together. And my favorite line of covenant, Israel, is when he says, I will be your God and you will be my people. Just that kind of like personal pronouns in there. Like, that’s that’s what I’m going to be. And that’s that’s who you are. And I love this this story. And I can’t remember if we told it The Book of Mormon year or not, but I first learned about it from President Fallston conference where he told of an earthquake in Armenia that happened in the late 80s when 30000 people died in four minutes.
It was so catastrophic and devastating. But among the disaster there was this father whose son was away at school and the promise that he’d made to his son that I will always be there for you drove him to go find that spot in the rubble where the school once was and he knew where the classroom was. And and he started digging in and moving the bricks and the in the wires and everything out. And the police chief came in, the fire chief came and people came warning him of explosions and danger and everything.
And and that father moved bricks and dug and dug for over 30 straight hours until finally he heard a voice in the rubble. And he calls out and says, Armaan, is that you? And he says, Dad, it’s me. And when the school had collapsed, it created a teepee and a collection of those kids have been saved. And then the boy said this. I told them that you would come for me. And that is the God that is introduced in Section two in the Book of Mormon throughout the restoration story, in all of scripture, a God who will keep coming, who will fulfill his promises, who will provide and who will prevail in people’s lives like that’s who he is.
And in that and who will be there, you just love the simplicity of that promise. I will be there. Right. That’s what that dad did, right?
He showed up and I’ll keep I’ll keep going.
Like the restoration isn’t evidence of a God who does not give up on his people, who does not give up on the human family. That’s what it testifies most sweetly and powerfully.
And and you love in that story of that boy, which becomes that turning of the hearts outward. Right to other people is that boy knew his dad would come for him. But I love that he also knew his dad would come for all of them. It was a bringing with this is how good my father is. Stay with me, come with me, be with me, gather in with me, because my father will come and he will deliver us from this.
And you just love that that assurance that that boy had because he knew the promises and he knew of a father who would prevail and provide in that moment. It’s it’s so good.
Right. And in this crazy it’s is right there in this little section, all of this that can be unpacked in there. And that’s what’s so beautiful. And it’s here’s Joseph who’s had this great experience with God, who feels like I’m weak and I’m failing and I’m messing up and God shows up again and teaches. And this is who I’ll be for you. And this is who I plan on being. This is who I am for all people.
I love that at the end of this lesson, at the very end of our journal journal.
I had to work for me to do, but then there’s an invitation for you to think, what’s your work this year? And when you look at your work with this background in mind, it might change what you feel like.
You’re 20, 21 purpose is it might help you define that a little differently than you maybe would have without thinking of all this. So once you’re done with this lesson to maybe sit down and it’d be fun to read the youth theme doctrine and covenants. Oh yeah. Section 60 thirty three, because it just takes in everything that we’ve been learning here to think God actually does have a great work for you in twenty, twenty one individual and personal to you and your talents and your relationships and your circle of influence.
And I love when you think of this you theme and especially as you think of like you writing down what your work might be. He says wherefore be not weary and well doing. In other words, like don’t give up in doing good for you are laying the foundation of a great work and out of small things to see with that which is great. And you just have to think of the little hill right there by my house, by my house, the little hill.
And let’s not forget when we that’s our poster word for the week, you know, is just work and we think about what our work is, how it swallowed up and what God’s work is.
And God’s work is and will always be people. The rescuing, the loving, the giving hope to in the taking care of and being there for people. So when we discover our work is it will fit in into it will fit into that. Yeah. All right. This is the best stuff, but more good stuff that I know will be right on the heels of this.
You want to remember this lesson as we get ready to jump in the next lesson. We’ll see you next week. See you.