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Showing posts from January, 2011

"[To Teach]...the Ways of the Lord," Jarom1:1-7


Jarom's primary reason for making his record was to preserve the genealogy of his people, according to the commandment that he had received of his father, Enos. He also understands that the primary benefactors will be the Lamanites at some future date.(verse 1)

Though he had prophecies and revelations of his own, one of the marks of Jarom's humility is that he points to what had already been written by Nephi, Jacob, and Enos, explaining that the plan of Salvation had already been revealed by them. (verse 2)

After explaining the difference between the Nephites (a God-fearing people, vs 5) and the Lamanites (a blood-thirsty group, vs 6), Jarom explains how the leadership of the Nephites caused their people to prevail against the Lamanites. "Our leaders were mighty men in the faith of the Lord; and they taught the people the ways of the Lord;" (verse 7). Mighty men of faith teach the ways of the Lord to the people, and thus the people are strengthened to unders…

"Wrought Upon," Enos 1:22-27

Enos 1:22-27

I've been thinking as of late of some of the great ordeals that prophets have to go through in the process of having their faith tried and refined. It makes me wonder how I could hope to qualify to stand along side the ancients who had to go through so much hardship, if I myself do not have to be tested as they were tested. Some of these final remarks suggest that such were the days of Enos as well.

There is one verse however that stands  out in my reading this morning, verse 26, wherein he talks about "having been wrought upon by the power of God that I must preach and prophecy unto this people, and declare the word according to the truth which is in Christ."  Particularly, what does it mean to be "wrought upon by the power of God".  In Spanish, it is translated as being influenced by the power of God. (Perhaps the irony of this post is that yesterday, I would have been done, published, and moved on to the next group of verses if I hadn't been &…

"A Desire for the Welfare of My Brethern," Enos 1:9-21

Enos 1:9-21

Enos's subsequent comment in verse 9 is evidence of his repentance being complete. Afterward, he felt a desire toward his brethren to receive of the same blessing. Christ taught Peter, "And when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." (Luke 22:32) What strikes me as interesting is that I never had considered that "natural" fruit of repentance and conversion to be a desire to share it with others. This must have been then what Elder Ballard meant back in 2006 when he said:
Our love for the Lord and appreciation for the Restoration of the gospel are all the motivation we need to share what gives us much joy and happiness. It is the most natural thing in the world for us to do, and yet far too many of us are hesitant to share our testimonies with others. ("Creating a Gospel Sharing Home," Elder M. Russell Ballard, General Conference, April 2006, emphasis added)
Enos had learned the power and effectiveness of prayer in being able to wor…

"Lord, How Is It Done?" Enos1:1-8

Enos 1:1-8

As testament to his father Jacob, Enos begins his short account with a simple statement of tribute to his father: "knowing my father that he was a just man." (verse 1, emphasis added) How appropriate and how beautiful is the acknowledgment of a son of his father's goodness and righteousness. It might seem backwards that the testimony of a son towards his father would be such compelling evidence of his father's goodness, but on the other hand, who better to make such a statement.

Enos's account is different than Nephi's and Jacob's. Here is the first prophet in the Book of Mormon to make reference to his own repentance and conversion to Christ. He describes it in simple terms by saying, "I will tell you of the wrestle that I had before God, before I received a remission of my sins." (verse 2)

Enos's repentance process was, when it finally came, an all day ordeal. He was found in a quiet place, were betwixt him and God they could work …

"We Did Mourn Out Our Days," Jacob 7

Jacob 7

This chapter is well known for its one of the two accounts found in the Book of Mormon of an Anti-Christ. Sherem came preaching a variation on the scriptures, claiming that he believed the things that were written therein, but denying the foundational message of every prophet that had written: that Christ should come. Jacob countered his claims.
"...Behold, I say unto you that none of the prophets have written, nor prophesied, save they have spoken concerning this Christ." (verse 11) Jacob's personal commentary on the situation reminds me of the Prophet Joseph Smith's comments about how he responded to people who plainly refused to accept his account of the First Vision.  Jacob observes:
"And he had hope to shake me from the faith, notwithstanding the many revelations and the many things which I had seen concerning these things; for I truly had seen angels, and they had ministered unto me. And also, I had heard the voice of the Lord speaking unto me in ve…