2 Nephi 13

2 Nephi 13: Judah and Jerusalem are Punished

                Judah and Jerusalem shall be punished for their disobedience; this text can also be fund in Isaiah 3.

“For Jerusalem is ruined, and Judah is fallen, because their tongues and their doings have been against the Lord, to provoke the eyes of his glory.” (2 Nephi 13:8) Whenever people rebel against God and speak against Him, the Lord will not be happy.

“The show of their countenance doth witness against them, and doth declare their sin to be even as Sodom, and they cannot hide it. Wo unto their souls, for they have rewarded evil unto themselves!” (2 Nephi 13:9) The sins of the people in ancient Jerusalem and Judah were like that of Sodom, which is why they were destroyed.

The women were dressed with fine linen and jewelry; it is also likely that people were very promiscuous, much like how sex is considered “normal” outside of the bonds of marriage in our modern societies.  Isaiah mentions a few of the things going on during this period of history, which really have similarities to our modern societies. Notice it mentions body modifications with nose rings, wearing of fine linen… etc.

“In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments, and cauls, and round tires like the moon; The chains and the bracelets, and the mufflers; The bonnets, and the ornaments of the legs, and the headbands, and the tablets, and the ear-rings; The rings, and nose jewels; The changeable suits of apparel, and the mantles, and the wimples, and the crisping-pins; The glasses, and the fine linen, and hoods, and the veils.

And it shall come to pass, instead of sweet smell there shall be stink; and instead of a girdle, a rent; and instead of well-set hair, baldness; and instead of a stomacher, a girding of sackcloth; burning instead of beauty. Thy men shall fall by the sword and thy mighty in the war.” (2 Nephi 13:18-25)

Ezekiel 15-16

Ezekiel 15-16

Chapter 15: Jerusalem will be burned

The Jews are compared to a barren, useless vine, fit for nothing but to be cast on the fire.

Chapter 16: Jerusalem is Sin, the Last Days

God is a very caring and loving God. This chapter helps us to understand how God does so much in our lives and then we repay him with ingratitude, polluting ourselves with idolatry, breaking commandments and committing sin. We learn about a whore, who with her nakedness will be discovered by those she has committed whoredoms with. Sodom is her sister.

Genesis 19-21

Genesis 19-21

Chapter 19: Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah

Lot entertains holy men, but before they are able to lay down at night, men from Sodom encircle the house and demand to see the holy men. Lot tells them that they cannot come in, but if they were to leave, he could offer then his daughters (Genesis 19:8). Those men that were demanding to see the holy men are stricken with blindness, giving Lot, his wife and his daughter’s time to leave. Because angels had told them the city of Sodom would be destroyed by the hand of God. They were commanded to leave and go to the city of Zoar, they were also commanded to not “…look not behind…” (Genesis 19:17).

Lot and his family narrowly escape Sodom when “…the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven… but his wife (Lot’s wife) looked back from behind him, and she became as a pillar of salt.” (Genesis 19:24-26)

Abraham woke up in the morning and saw Sodom and Gomorrah as “…the smoke of a furnace.” (Genesis 19:28). God remembered Abraham by removing Lot before destroying Sodom and Gomorrah.

When Lot arrives in Zoar, he and his daughters take shelter in a cave at the top of a mountain. Lot’s daughters come up with a plan to save Lot’s “seed” by getting him drunk and then “lying” with him to “preserve” his seed. The first night, Lot’s oldest daughter lies with him and then the next day she tells her younger sister to do the same thing. (Genesis 19:30-34).

In my scriptures I have Genesis 19:30-32 marked as “What?” which is an entire list of “What?” scripture stories/verses in the Bible that make you stop and think, maybe even wonder why these things are in the Bible. As we read more of the Old Testament, I will make sure to point out the odd things that you can find in the Bible. Honestly if the Bible were to be made into a movie, it would easily have an R rating. This along with other oddities that you can find in the Bible, gives me reason to believe that the Bible is not the complete written work of God. The Bible has passed through so many hands, it is hard to know what part of the Bible is really and what was added by men. Now, this particular story probably did happen, and we can see that it was probably for good reasoning, so as to preserve mankind.

Anyways, they both get pregnant and bare Lot a son, the oldest had a son and names her son; Moab, who later becomes the father of the Moabites. The younger daughter has a son as well and names her son; Benmmi, who is the father of the children of Ammon.

Chapter 20: Abimelech and Sarah

Abraham and Sarah travel to Gerar, between Kadesh and Shur. After arriving in Gerar, the king of Gerar sent for and took Sarah, because Abraham had told them that she was his sister.

But God comes to Abimelech (the king of Gerar) in a dream and tells him that he will be comitting sin if he touches Sarah, because she is another man’s wife. Abimelech tells God “Said he not unto me, She is my sister?”  (Genesis 20:5), God tells him the truth and promises him that he will not be cursed because of what he had done, because he acted in ignorance. But he commands him to restore Sarah to Abraham because he is a prophet.

In the morning, Abimelech calls for Abraham and asks him;

Abimelech: “…What has thou done unto us?… that thou hast brought on me and my kingdom a great sin?…” (Genesis 20:9)

Abraham: “…Because I thought, Surely the fear of God is not in this place; and they will slay me for my wifes sake. And yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife” (Genesis 20:11-12)

Abimelech then took sheep, oxen, men and women servants and gave them to Abraham, also restoring Sarah to him and allowing him to stay anywhere that it pleased Abraham throughout the kings land.

Abraham then prayed unto God, and God healed Abimelech and caused that his wife and his servants to bare children.

Chapter 21: Abraham and Abimelech

Sarah is visited by the Lord and caused that Sarah in her ripe old age to have a child. She bares Abraham a son and calls him Isaac. Isaac is circumcised by Abraham at the age of 8 days old. Abraham was 100 years old when Isaac was born. We learn that promises of Abraham will be preserved through Isaac and not through Abraham’s other son Ishmael, who was conceived through Hagar. Hagar and her son Ishmael are cast out of Abraham’s household. Abraham gives Hagar a bottle of water and sends her and Ishmael on a journey through the wilderness of Beer-sheba. But during this journey, Hagar runs out of water and places Ishmael on the ground nearby, and starts weeping, because she does not want to watch her son die. God hears the voice/cry of Ishmael and calls out to Hagar; “…What aileth thee, Hagar? fear not; for God hath heard the voice of the lad where he is. Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him in thine hand; for I will make him a great nation. And God opened her eyes, and she saw a well of water; and she went and filled the bottle with water and gave the lad drink.” (Genesis 21:17-19)

Ishmael grows up in the wilderness and becomes an archer. Hagar and Ishmael dwell in the wilderness of Paran and Ishmael marries a woman from Egypt.

Abraham and Abimelech deal justly with each other and make a covenant to each other to continue to deal justly.

Genesis 16-18

Genesis 16-18

Chapter 16: Hagar and Ishmael

Sarai goes to Abram and tells him to go to her maid, Hagar and have children with her, because Sarai is unable to, and wants children. Abram does as his wife asks, this all happening 10 years from the time that they established themselves in the land of Canaan. Sarai after seeing that Hagar was pregnant with her husband’s child, gets worried that God will judge her. Sarai speaks with Abram and asks what she should do, Abram responds that she should do as she “pleaseth” with Hagar, so Sarai deals “Hardly” with Hagar and Hagar flees.

Hagar, having fled is visited by an angel of the Lord, who tells her:

  • That she needs to return to Sarai and submit to her.
  • That she will bear a son, and his name will be Ishmael.

This all happened by the fountain in Shur, which is later named “Beer-Lahai-Roi” – between Kadesh and Bered. Hagar has the child and Abram names his new son, Ishmael, as the Lord had told Hagar he would.

Chapter 17: Abrahamic Covenant

When Abram was 99 years old, the Lord appeared unto him and Abram and God conversed (they talked and walked with each other). God tells Abram that he will no longer be called by Abram, but now by a new name: Abraham.

God tells Abraham that he will make him “exceedingly fruitful” and establishes his covenant with him. Men, starting at the age of 8 days old will be required to be circumcised, removing the flesh of the foreskin. Abraham is also instructed of the Lord to no longer call his wife Sarai, but by her new name: Sarah. God promises Abraham that through his wife Sarah, they will have a son and his name will be Isaac.

God promises Abraham’s son Ishmael that he will also be blessed, having 12 princes born unto him, making him and his posterity a great nation.

At the age of 99, Abraham and his son, Ishmael (age 13) are circumcised.

Chapter 18: Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah

The Lord appears unto Abraham in the plains of Mamre, three holy men also appear unto Abraham and ask for water and bread. Abraham also fetches a young, tender calf for them to eat.

These three holy men tell Abraham that his wife Sarah will conceive a son, Sarah over-hears this and laughs in her heart, Sarah being old an unable to have children thought that this was impossible.

The Lord tells Abraham about Sarah laughing in her heart after over-hearing that she would conceive a son unto Abraham. The Lord asks Abraham; “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” – but the Lord assures Abraham that Sarah will indeed bare Abraham a son, even in her ripe old age. Abraham confronts Sarah and asks her why she had laughed in her heart, and out of fear, Sarah denies that she had laughed in her heart..

We learn that Abraham will command his children to do justice and judgment in the world.  The Lord also appears unto Abraham and discusses the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. Abraham does not want Sodom and Gomorrah to be destroyed and asks God; “…If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city…”  (Genesis 18:26) then will you not destroy the city? God tells him that he will not, if he can find fifty righteous men within the city. But Abraham does not stop there, he continues to ask the Lord (essentially hypothetical questions) if smaller and smaller amounts of righteous men can be found, if the Lord would still spare the city. He starts with 50, then goes to 45, 40, 30, 20 and then finally 10, each time the Lord responds that he will not destroy the city, but cautioning him to not make him angry by his constant demands.