2019 Study Summary 19: What Lack I Yet
Matthew 19–20; Mark 10; Luke 18
“What Lack I Yet”
How is marriage viewed in the Bible by Jews of today?
“Marriage is not merely an agreement between two individuals which can be dissolved at will, it is a union of souls. The same God who prescribed a formula for the fusion of souls — the formula followed beneath the wedding canopy — also gave detailed instructions how these two souls can revert to a state of independence.” (https://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/557906/jewish/Divorce-Basics.htm#Jewish)
How long is the duration of a marriage?
Marriage is viewed without ending because there is no mention of “Until death do ye part.” The canopy mentioned is often a large “Talith,” a remnant reminder of clothing used in the ancient temple. Another Talith is used over the heads of the bride and the groom. In many Jewish families, the couple’s first intimacy is the marriage kiss, under the Talith. Even throughout the courtship, they have never touched. Another remarkable reminder of ancient temple worship is the practice of the couple to retain their Talith marriage canopy and the over-the-head Talith, because they will be ultimately buried in the “garments” they were married in.
What are intimacy aspects of marriage?
“Judaism believes that man must serve God with his soul and his body. A person’s soul is that part of him that loves God and His goodness and wants to be like Him, and a person’s body is the physical container of his soul on earth. Nearly all the mitzvot which God gave are to be performed with the body. Thus the physical actions of man are sanctified. This applies to all the physical aspects of life: even sex when it is practiced in the proper framework, marriage, is in accordance with the will of God and is a mitzvah.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How can holiness be reflected in human desire?
“Like other basic human desires, sex is regarded in a positive light in Jewish teaching, especially as it is the means of fulfilling the first biblical commandment: “Be fruitful and multiply.” Judaism does not encourage the unbridled fulfillment of desire, however, but rather imposes restrictions which raise the act to the level of holiness.” “The primary restriction of sexual activity in Jewish law is that it should take place within marriage, as an expression of love between husband and wife as well as out of a desire to fulfill God’s commandments . . . which ensure that the couple does not indulge in sex on impulse but rather directs the act to holiness.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How does modesty influence chastity?
“Judaism encourages modesty as one of the means to chastity . . . dress and act modestly at all times . . . a man is forbidden to be alone with a woman with whom he is not permitted to have sexual relations from considerations of both chastity and modesty.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.) Latter-day Saint doctrine is more definitive in that any sexual contact or activity with any body, including your own body, that leads to improper sexual emotions is simply unwarranted. Obviously, the world’s mass media culture generally disagrees with such a standard.
What must I do to inherit Eternal Life?
As a discipline and behavioral structure, the early Saints gave everything to the Lord. By consecrating their resources to the Kingdom of God, they were learning stewardship instead of ownership. “Neither was there any among them that lacked: . . . and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.” (Acts 4:32-35) Stewardship is an eternal principle also given before Jesus’ time. “For Moses had said, Consecrate yourselves to day to the LORD, even every man upon his son, and upon his brother; that he may bestow upon you a blessing this day.” (Exodus 32:29) “And behold, thou wilt remember the poor, and consecrate of thy properties for their support that which thou hast to impart unto them, with a covenant and a deed which cannot be broken.” (DC 42:30)
What is greater than the “Law?”
“Ritual alone does not please God, who demands that it go hand in hand with mercy and compassion.” “The exercise of mercy is an obligation for all Jews. By this it is meant that they must act with compassion and forgiveness towards all mankind, and perform deeds of charity and kindness. This quality is an essential characteristic of God who is known as Rahum (“Merciful”) and, in accordance with the tradition which sets as man’s goal the imitation of God: “As He is merciful, so be you merciful.” Just as God is bound by His covenant of mercy with His people, so is the Jew bound by specific commandments to act mercifully to the oppressed, the alien, the orphan, the widow, and indeed, every living creature . . . the prophet Zechariah (Zechariah 7:9) put it: “…execute the judgment and show mercy and compassion every man to his brother.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
So, when does the Law of Consecration begin?
The law of consecration, in a celestial sense, is a stewardship of doing without being instructed to do so. Those that have to ask, “What must I do to inherit life?” must grasp the opportunity to reach higher so that the spirit can dictate the answer, “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God,” now.
How did little children have an effect on the king?
In 1994, an event occurred in Israel. It bears reprinting, befitting this lesson, because it deals with Israel’s neighbors, the Jordanians, its recently deceased visionary King Hussein, and little children. The background to the news story included an expected festivity as a new bridge, named the Hussein Bridge, was opened across the Jordan River, connecting Israel and Jordan. The king was coming to visit Israel, this time officially and publicly. The media waited for the two previous enemies to meet half-way across the bridge. They were surprised however, that the Israeli officials did not arrive on schedule. Instead, Israeli children with bunches of flowers ran toward the Jordanian king. Unarmed, unaccompanied, they surrounded the king and gave him the flowers. The king wept. The media didn’t understand. Even in a land and among a people that don’t know their King of Kings, they know how to greet a king. They sent their little ones. “Take heed that ye despise not one of these little ones; for I say unto you, That in heaven their angels do always behold the face of my Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 18:10)