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"The Waters of Shiloah," 2 Nephi 18:1-8

2 Nephi 18:1-8

There is a theme that runs throughout this chapter. It is first stated like this:
Forasmuch as this people refusesth the waters of Shiloah that go softly... behold, the Lord bringeth upon them the waters of the river, strong and many... (vs 6 & 7).
"Shiloah" in this verse is another name for the Messiah, (see JST Genesis 50:24). "The waters of Shiloah that go softly..." This reminds me of other names or titles attributed to the Savior, such as "living water". In John 4:14 from the conversation that the Savior has with the woman at the well, it reads:
But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
So perhaps in a similar sense, what Isaiah is accusing his people of rejecting is the gentle, peaceable gospel of Christ--these waters that flow softly.

Focusing on the promise extended to those that do drink, or in other words, those that hear the gospel and obey it, the Savior promises "a well of water springing up into everlasting life." This promise is expounded upon in even greater detail in the Doctrine and Covenants where it talks about the righteous exercise of priesthood power. It concludes with these words, "and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever," (D & C 121:46).

Isaiah's people rejected these slow flowing waters of Shiloah, which in reality was a rejection of the Lord thier God. As the chapter continues the Lord counsel with Isaiah, and Isaiah himself explains how one ought to depend upon God for every blessing and not on the devises of men.

The personal application from these first verses is this: How often do I reject, or decline the opportunity to drink the waters of Life? Christ himself gave the test to measure effective "drinking" so to speak. If I am drinking deeply from the waters of Christ's doctrine, then they shall flow within me and out of me as a never-ending spring of pure water (to also bless the lives of others) which is the guide to and the guarantee of eternal life.