2 Nephi 11

2 Nephi 11: Jacob sees the Savior

                Jacob testifies to his people that he has seen Christ, but he says that it is not just his word to believe, but the words of all the witnesses that have seen God.

“…wherefore, I will send their words forth unto my children to prove unto them that my words are true. Wherefore, by the words of three, God hath said, I will establish my word. Nevertheless, God sendeth more witnesses, and he proveth all his words.” (2 Nephi 11:3)

God has said that by the word of 2-3 witnesses his word shall be established. Jacob is not the only one claiming to have seen God and therefore testifies to the people that he has seen Him. He writes this down as a record to his people and all future generations, as well as the testimonies of others who say they have seen of Him.

Jacob testifies that a Savior would need to exist; “…that save Christ should come all men must perish. For if there be no Christ there be no God; and if there be no God we are not, for there could have been no creation. But there is a God, and he is Christ, and he cometh in the fulness of his own time.” (2 Nephi 11:6-7)

Hebrews 1

Hebrews 1: Jesus Christ Created All Things

Paul writes to the Hebrews and says; “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he [Jesus Christ] made the worlds; Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;” (Hebrews 1:1-3) In other words, Paul explains that not only does God speak with Prophets and Apostles, but He also spoke with His Son, Jesus Christ. Paul also explains that under Heavenly Fathers [God] direction, Jesus Christ [God’s Son] created the World. This means that God laid out the blueprint for His plan, and under His direction, Jesus Christ created the world.

Paul then goes on to explain some very important doctrines;

“But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands:” (Hebrews 1:8-10)

This is what we can learn from this chapter:

  • The Lord “Jesus” answers to the same God; Our Heavenly Father. This Makes Jesus Christ our Brother.  (See Also: Psalms 45:6-7)

o   “Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows”

 

  • Jesus is the God of the “Old Testament” (See Hebrews 1:8-10)

 

  • Jesus is the Great “I AM”, also known as Jehovah. (See Also: Exodus 3:13-16)

o   “And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever…”

 

  • Jesus is the “WORD” that was with God, when He built the Universe. (See Also: Hebrews 1:10; John 1:1-3 and Psalms 33:6)

o   “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him [Jesus Christ] and without him was not anything made that was made”

John 8

John 8: He that is without Sin, cast the First Stone!

                Jesus leaves and goes into the mount of Olives, before returning to the Temple to teach those gathered. Shortly after being in the temple, the scribes and Pharisees bring in a woman and throw her before Jesus saying; “…this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou?” (John 8:4-5) It is clear that the scribes and the Pharisees were only trying to tempt Jesus and catch Him in a trap. Jesus however, stooped down and began to write on the ground with His finger as if He did not hear what they just said. This angered the scribes and the Pharisees and they persisted in asking Jesus what He thought of the woman and the sin she had just performed. Jesus said to them; “…He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” (John 8:7) Upon hearing this and after the conscience of their own guilt they began to leave one by one, until only the woman and Jesus were left. When Jesus saw that no one else was around, He lifted up His head and asked the woman; “…Woman, where are those thine accusers? Hath no man condemned thee?” (John 8:10) The woman responded; “…No man, Lord.” (John 8:11) Jesus then tells her; “…Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.” (John 8:11)

Jesus takes the opportunity to teach those who had gathered; “…I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” (John 8:12) The Scribes and the Pharisees attack Him for bearing record of Himself, Jesus explains that even if He bears record of Himself, it is still true. He explains that the Father bears record of Him and He bears record of the Father. He reminds them that in their law; “…the testimony of two men is true.” (John 8:17) The Scribes and Pharisees foolishly ask where His Father is, and Jesus explains that if they knew the Father, they would have known His Son also.

Jesus tells them; “…When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me I speak these things.” (John 8:28) Essentially we learn here that Jesus is the Son of God, and being so means that the Son and the Father are two separate and individual beings, one in purpose. Jesus tells those gathered that if they follow Him, they shall be set free. This, asking how they could be free if they were never in bondage confused some. Jesus explains; “…Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.” (John 8:34)

Even so, many sought to kill Jesus. Saying that they were the children of Abraham and because of Abraham they were children of the Father. Jesus tells them; “…If God were your Father, ye would love me; for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself but he sent me. Why do ye not understand my speech? …Ye are of your father the devil and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God” (John 8:42-43)

                The Scribes and Pharisees then say that Jesus has a devil inside of Him (which makes no sense, He just said that the Devil was evil, and evil spirit would never say such a thing) Even after Jesus explains that He doesn’t have an evil spirit, they persist. Jesus tells them that if anyone follows Him, they shall not see death. Jesus of course was speaking of Spiritual Death, but the Scribes and Pharisees said that he definitely has a devil, asking Him; “Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead?” (John 8:53)

Jesus explains that “…Abraham rejoiced to see my day; and he saw it and was glad.” (John 8:56) The Jews were angry at this point and asked Jesus; “…Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?” (John 8:57) They just didn’t get it, because they did not believe that Jesus was the Christ, nor the Son of God. Jesus answered them, saying; “…Before Abraham was, I am.” (John 8:58) The Jews were even more angered and picked up stones to throw at Him, but Jesus escaped.

So who is I AM? In the Old Testament we read about the God of the Old Testament, known as Jehovah, who said he was the great I AM. When Moses was speaking to God and asking Him who he should tell his people that sent him; “…God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM… Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you…” (Exodus 3:14-15) Therefore, the reason Jesus knew Abraham, is because He was His God. He was His Father, and Jesus Christ’s Father was God the Eternal Father.

Psalms 83-84

Psalms 83-84

Chapter 83: Jehovah Most High over the Earth

A Song or Psalm of Asaph

Those who are against Israel and against the Lord have consulted together as one consent to destroy them. Asaph asks the Lord to confound the enemies of his people, to “Fill their faces with shame; that they may seek thy [The Lord] name…” (Psalms 83:16)

Asaph asks “Let them be confounded… That men may know that thou, whose name alone is Jehovah, are the most high over all the earth” (Psalms 83:18)

Chapter 84: Cry unto God

To the chief Musician upon Gittith, A Psalm for the sons of Korah

                This Psalm was written for the sons of Korah, the author is not as clear. However, the author says that his “…soul longeth, yea… my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.” (Psalms 84:2)

The author also says that he would “…rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.” (Psalms 84:10) in other words… being servant of the Lord is way better than being a King of the wicked, because your state is much happier and in better conditions.

The author leaves us with some great wisdom; “…no good thin will he [The Lord] withhold from them that walk uprightly.” (Psalms 84:11) Essentially he is saying that if you are good, and are following the commandments of God and you have a righteous desire, God will answer it. In fact, He has an obligation to answer your righteous desire. For example, asking to win the lottery would not be a righteous desire. But a man, trying to feed his family, asks for help to find a job to provide for them, this will be granted as it is a righteous desire.

 

Exodus 4-6

Exodus 4-6

Chapter 4: Signs Unto Moses

Moses tells God that the people will not listen to/nor believe him. So the Lord give Moses a few signs that he can use to prove to the people that he was sent from God.

  1. The Rod: Moses has a rod and when he throws it on the ground it turns into a serpent.
  2. Leprous Hand: God gives Moses the ability to change his had from a non-leprous hand, to a Leprous hand and then back to a non-leprous hand by placing his hand in his “bosom”

God tells Moses that if they do not believe the first sign, show them the second and if they do not believe the second sign, show them the third sign; Moses is commanded to then take some water from the river and pour it onto dry land, when he does this the water will turn to blood.

Moses, even after seeing all these wonderful things/signs, asks God how he is supposed to do these things, seeing that he is “...slow of speech, and of tongue.” (Exodus 4:10).

God responds with a question to Moses; “…who hath made man’s mouth?” (Exodus 4:11). This to me is very inspiring, sometimes we feel like we are unable to do something… ESPECIALLY when it is a commandment of God. We make excuses and say that we are weak or unable to do something that God has commanded us to do/or not to do. But really we must understand, who made us? God. So if God says we can do something, we CAN do it!

God tells Moses that he can do it, and that he will be with him as he does it, God calls Aaron to be the spokesman for the Hebrew people. Moses returns to his father-in-law and asks him to let him go to Egypt to complete what the Lord has commanded. Jethro agrees and sends him off in “peace”, Moses gathers his wife and sons and return to the land of Egypt, with the rod that God had given to him in his hands. God tells Moses to do all these wonders/signs before Pharaoh, but that he will harden his heart so that he will not let his people go.

Now here is where the story gets a little weird; Exodus 4:24-26 was what I considered a “What!?!” section of the Bible. I have shared other “What!?!” sections in the past. I even did some research on these verses and found that the general Bible scholars do not understand these verses:

“And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision.” (Exodus 4:24-26)

“And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband thou art, because of the circumcision.” (Exodus 4:24-26)

 

“And it came to pass, that the Lord appeared unto him (Moses) as he was in the way, by the inn. The Lord was angry with Moses and his hand was about to fall upon him, to kill him; for he had not circumcised his son. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone and circumcised her son, and cast the stone at his feet, and said, Surely thou art a bloody husband to me. And the Lord spared Moses and let him go, because Zipporah, his wife, circumcised the child. And she said, Thou art a bloody husband. And Moses was ashamed, and hid his face from the Lord, and said, I have sinned before the Lord.” (Exodus 4:24-26 Joseph Smith Translation)

 

Now we can clearly see why the Lord was angry with Moses and why Zipporah circumcised her son. The above scripture helps me and everyone to understand the importance of scripture and modern prophets. We can see that plain a precious things have been taken from the Bible, whether intentional or not. Think about it, do you think that the people translating the Bible or making copies of the Bible in the times that they were originally written had a copy machine or scanner?!?! NO. All of the copies had to be made by hand. So one example would be the game of telephone… over time the message gets distorted by intent or by accident. The same with manuscripts, they got altered and changed through translations, copies and mischief.

Moses and Aaron meet up in the wilderness, and Moses shares all that God had told him to do with Aaron. Moses and Aaron gather together all of the elders of Israel and Aaron shared what Moses had told him about the Lord. The people of Israel rejoice and worship God because he remembered their affliction.

Chapter 5: Free Israel!

Aaron and Moses go into see the Pharaoh and bring him this message; “…Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Let my people go, that they may hold a feast unto me in the wilderness.” (Exodus 5:1). Pharaoh tells them that he does not know who the “Lord” is and that he will not let his people go for three days when they have work to be done. Pharaoh gets upset and tells the taskmasters to no longer give straw to the Hebrews to make bricks, but instead they had to find their own straw. So the Hebrews were scattered throughout the land of Egypt looking for straw, but instead used stubble.

Moses is upset because since he came, he has only brought more evil to come among the children of Israel, he prays to God and asks him why he has not delivered the people.

Chapter 6: Jehova = Jesus Christ

The Lord tells Moses that “…with a strong hand shall he(referring to Pharaoh) let them go, and with a strong hand shall he drive them out of his land” (Exodus 6:1)

He tells Moses that when he appeared unto Abraham, Isaac and Jacob they knew him by “God Almighty”, but they did not know him by his real name; “Jehovah” – remember yesterday’s post?

 Who is “I AM”? Some people say that this is God or “Heavenly Father”, but in the Spanish scriptures (La Reina Valera) where it says “…The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob…” (Genesis 3:15) – the Spanish version says “Jehovah” instead of “The Lord God”.

 

                So who is Jehovah? – Well if we read WAY AHEAD in the Bible in the New Testament- John 8:58; “Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” . So we learn that Jehovah is Jesus Christ.

 

God reminds Moses that he had made a promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that they land would be theirs, he commands Moses to remind his people of this, but they do not listen because of their pain in bondage.

God then commands Moses and Aaron to go into Pharaoh again and tell him to let his people go.  God gives them his blessing that they will be able to do as he has commanded them.

 

The genealogy of Reuben, Simeon and Levi:

 

  • Reuben:
    • Hanoch
    • Pallu
    • Hezron
    • Carmi
    • Simeon:
      • Jemuel
      • Jamin
      • Ohad
      • Jachin
      • Zohar
      • Shaul
      • Levi: (dies at the age of 137)
        • Gershon
          • Libni
          • Shimi
    • Kohath (dies at the age of 133)
      • Amram (dies at the age of 137)
        • Amram marries Jochebed his father’s sister and bares:
          • Aaron (takes Elisheba daughter of Amminadab, sister of Naashon to wife; and bares:
            • Nadab
            • Abihu
            • Eleazar (takes one of the daughters of Putiel to wife and bares;
              • Phinehas
              • Ithamar
              • Moses
          • Izhar
            • Korah
              • Assir
              • Elkanah
              • Abiasaph
              • Nepheg
              • Zichiri
          • Hebron
          • Uzziel
            • Mishael
            • Elzaphan
            • Zithri
    • Merari
      • Mahali
      • Mushi

 

Moses is again commanded to go in unto Pharaoh and tell him all that the Lord has told him.

Exodus 1-3

Exodus 1-3

Chapter 1: Pharaoh Seeks to Destroy all Males

The children of Jacob/Israel dwell in the land of Egypt; Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, Zebulun, Benjamin, Dan, Naphtali, Gad, Asher and Joseph. All of the souls that came from Jacob were seventy that were in Egypt.

But the children of Israel multiply and become a mighty people. The king of Egypt (after Pharaoh) did not know Joseph and therefore feared the children of Israel. The King of Egypt called for “taskmasters” to inflict on them burdens that they might become a weak people. With this “slave” labor the King of Egypt builds two treasure cities; Pithom and Raamses. As the king of Egypt inflicted more and more on the children of Egypt, the mightier they became!

The king of Egypt calls the midwives to come and tells them to kill all males that are born unto the Hebrews and only let live the females. The midwives (fearing God) refuse to do it and anger the king of Egypt. The king then calls them for a second time and demands that all male babies that are born to be thrown into the river, saving only the female babies.

Chapter 2: The Birth of Moses

There was a man who came from Levi, who married one of the daughters of Levi. They get married and have a child; a son. Because of the new laws in the land of Egypt she fears that her baby boy will be murdered, so she hides him for 3 months. But after time, she realizes that she cannot continue to hide this baby boy for long. So she takes him to the river and puts him in an “ark”, basically a little basket made of bulrushes that would float down the river.

The baby boy is found a little while later by the daughter of Pharaoh, who looks upon the boy with compassion and sends him away to be nursed by another Hebrew woman. When the boy is older, he is given to Pharaoh’s daughter to be her son. Pharaoh’s daughter calls her new son; Moses.

Moses grows up and sees the mistreatment of his brothers, the Hebrews. One day he witnesses an Egyptian “smiting” or hitting a Hebrew and decides this is unacceptable. So when he thinks no one is looking, he kills the Egyptian and hides “buries” him in the sand.

The next day he goes out and one of the Hebrews asks him why he thinks he could be a prince and judge over them, and asks Moses if he is going to kill him as well. Moses at this point gets very nervous because he thought no one had seen him killing the Egyptian. So Moses flees to the land of Midian. This was a smart move on the part of Moses because after Pharaoh hears about what Moses did, he seeks to slay Moses.

Moses, while dwelling at a well in the land of Midian meets the seven daughters of the priest of Midian. The priest invites Moses into his house and gives Zipporah, one of his daughters to marry Moses. Zipporah bares a child to Moses and names the child Gershom.

During this time the king of Egypt dies and the childen of Israel rejoice, because they were no longer in bondage. The Lord remembers his promise that he had made unto Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and has respect unto the children of Israel, the Hebrews.

Chapter 3: The Lord Appears unto Moses

Moses was watching over the flock of Jethro (who was his father-in-law). He led the flock to the backside of the desert and came unto the mountain of God, “Horeb”.

There, an angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire, that came from a bush. When Moses saw this, he stopped to see why the bush was not on fire. When he did this, God called out to him and tells him that he needs to go down to Egypt and bring his people out of bondage.

Moses agrees, but asks God what he should say when the Hebrews ask who sent him. God responds and tells Moses to tell them, that “I AM” sent him.

Who is “I AM”? Some people say that this is God or “Heavenly Father”, but in the Spanish scriptures (La Reina Valera) where it says “…The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob…” (Genesis 3:15) – the Spanish version says “Jehovah” instead of “The Lord God”.

So who is Jehovah? – Well if we read WAY AHEAD in the Bible in the New Testament- John 8:58; “Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” . So we learn that Jehovah is Jesus Christ.

God commands Moses to travel to Egypt and speak with the Elders of Israel. He tells Moses that they will go with him to Pharaoh and command that he let the people go. But God tells him that surely Pharaoh will not let them go so he will have to stretch forth his hand and make it happen.