2020 Study Summary 46: By Faith All Things Are Fulfilled
“By Faith All Things Are Fulfilled”
The prophet Ether exhorts the people to believe in God—Moroni recounts the wonders and marvels done by faith—Faith enabled the brother of Jared to see Christ—The Lord gives men weakness that they may be humble—The brother of Jared moved Mount Zerin by faith—Faith, hope, and charity are essential to salvation—Moroni saw Jesus face to face.
Ether speaks of a New Jerusalem to be built in America by the seed of Joseph—He prophesies, is cast out, writes the Jaredite history, and foretells the destruction of the Jaredites—War rages over all the land.
The iniquity of the people brings a curse upon the land—Coriantumr engages in warfare against Gilead, then Lib, and then Shiz—Blood and carnage cover the land.
Millions of the Jaredites are slain in battle—Shiz and Coriantumr assemble all the people to mortal combat—The Spirit of the Lord ceases to strive with them—The Jaredite nation is utterly destroyed—Only Coriantumr remains.
Which faith shall I develop?
A favorite definition is the Faith is “thinking” about what you want to happen. Fear is “thinking” about the things you don’t want to happen. Faith in the Lord, is “thinking” about what the Lord wants to happen. Many people “think” their way into their reality. That is because they have a God given gift of “thinking,” and what you think about, happens! The contrast in these chapters is that of trusting in the arm of flesh versus trusting faith in the Lord. Today, the modern structure of Judaism is based on keeping commandments rather than on the “spirit” or “faith in the Lord.” “The medieval Jewish philosophers gave a great deal of thought to formulating articles of faith and disagreed among themselves as to how many there should be. Some even opposed any such formulation on the grounds that every mitzvah [commandment] is an article of faith.” “In post-medieval times, interest in dogmas on the part of Jewish philosophers waned. Moses Mendelssohn rejected belief as a requirement of Judaism and claimed that performance of the mitzvot is the sole criterion.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
When was Temple attendance encouraged?
In Judaism, one of the commandments is to make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem three times a year. Once is in the Spring celebrating being delivered from Egypt. That is called Passover. The second is fifty days later, the celebration of Shavuot. It is in commemoration of receiving the Law of Moses. It is also the time the “Spirit or the gift of the Holy Ghost” was given after Jesus’ atonement. The third is called Sukkot. It is celebrating the journey through the wilderness, eventually arriving in the promised land. These were done in Old Jerusalem, and now after several utter destructions of the Holy City, it is done in the newly rebuilt Jerusalem. “Jerusalem occupies a very special place in the Jewish religion. It is, of course, often mentioned in the Bible, in a historical and poetical context. It is sometimes given a quasi-mystical character and is frequently used to signify all of Israel or all of Judaism. Because of its special holiness, Jerusalem is treated differently from other cities by the sages. There could be no permanent ownership of property in the city; its ritual purity had to be protected, and so no burial sites were allowed within the city walls.” “While the Temple stood, Jews were expected to make three pilgrimages there each year — on Passover, Sukkot, and Shavuot. Many still make these pilgrimages, using the opportunity to mourn the destruction of the Temple.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
What makes Jerusalem different than most any other city?
“Jerusalem [is the] capital of the State of Israel and spiritual center for most of the western world. Jerusalem is more than just a physical grouping of stone buildings and ancient walls spreading out over the Judean hills: it is the Holy City, symbol of universal peace and redemption for over 3,000 years.” “Jerusalem has since had many names, reflective of the love and reverence of its admirers, including ‘God’s City,’ ‘Faithful City,’ and ‘The Beautiful City.’” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.) The imagery of the Holy City, Jerusalem, applies to the past, present and future. It will, however, be more than just a city, it will be the “City of The Lord” with just as sacred and caring respect as the “House of The Lord.” As there is more than one eternal, righteous and one-in-heart “House of The Lord,” so will there be more than one eternal, righteous and one-in-heart “City of The Lord.”
What about the “New Jerusalem?”
“Now many will feel disposed to say, that this New Jerusalem spoken of, is the Jerusalem that was built by the Jews on the eastern continent. But you will see, from Revelation 21:2, there was a New Jerusalem coming down from God out of heaven, adorned as a bride for her husband; that after this, the Revelator was caught away in the Spirit, to a great and high mountain, and saw the great and holy city descending out of heaven from God. Now there are two cites spoken of here. As everything cannot be had in so narrow a compass as a letter, I shall say with brevity, that there is a New Jerusalem to be established on this continent, and also Jerusalem shall be rebuilt on the eastern continent (see Book of Mormon, Ether 13:1-12). ‘Behold, Ether saw the days of Christ, and he spake also concerning the house of Israel, and the Jerusalem from whence Lehi should come; after it should be destroyed, it should be built up again, a holy city unto the Lord, wherefore it could not be a New Jerusalem, for it had been in a time of old.’” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, Section Two 1834-37 p.86)
How will the “House of the Lord” expand into a “City of the Lord?”
“As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of the LORD of hosts, in the city of our God: God will establish it for ever.” (Psalms 48:8) “I will early destroy all the wicked of the land; that I may cut off all wicked doers from the city of the LORD.” (Psalms 101:8) “The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee, The city of the LORD, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.” (Isaiah 60:14) “And he spake also concerning the house of Israel, and the Jerusalem from whence Lehi should come–after it should be destroyed it should be built up again, a holy city unto the Lord; wherefore, it could not be a new Jerusalem for it had been in a time of old; but it should be built up again, and become a holy city of the Lord; and it should be built unto the house of Israel.” “The city of the Lord is different wherein we seek not only that which is better, but that which is best. Filled as our city is with people who are increasingly of one heart and of one mind and who are moved by the same basic beliefs, there is need for less and less in the way of structure to see that people do their duty toward each other. Here we do not divert people from their own labors into wasteful secondary tasks; basic love and honesty obtain increasingly between our people.” (Neal A. Maxwell, Of One Heart, p.38)
How does “first and last” apply to “restoration of all things?”
In an overview of God’s dealings with his chosen people, the Children of Israel in ancient times knew Him first, lived in the “Camp of Zion” and had a city of the Lord. The tribe of Judah from Old Jerusalem provided the Kings, the leadership at that time. After the “Golden Calf” the “higher” revelatory priesthood was revoked from most of the people except the Prophets, Seers and Revelators. However, Judah’s line produced the Kings and eventually the King of Kings. In the future, Jerusalem will expand into a city of the Lord, a temple city. “For it is ordained that in Zion, and in her stakes, and in Jerusalem, those places which I have appointed for refuge, shall be the places for your baptisms for your dead.” (Doctrine and Covenants 124:36) In our present time, the leadership is with Joseph, who received the revelatory priesthood, the keys of Temple worship, builds and uses these Houses of the Lord to bind us together and prepare us for His future return. One of the places he returns to is New Jerusalem, Adam Ondi Ahman. He will also appear in Old Jerusalem made new and the Jews, waiting for their King of Kings will recognize Him as the Holy One their forefathers knew. Have faith! All things will be fulfilled as the prophets told us. “I saw Adam in the valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman. He called together his children and blessed them with a patriarchal blessing. The Lord appeared in their midst, and he (Adam) blessed them all, and foretold what should befall them to the latest generation.” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, Section Four 1839-42 p.158) “And when these things come, bringeth to pass the scripture which saith, there are they who were first, who shall be last; and there are they who were last, who shall be first.” (Ether 13:12) Together, we shall worship together with the restoration of all things. “And also with Elias, to whom I have committed the keys of bringing to pass the restoration of all things spoken by the mouth of all the holy prophets since the world began, concerning the last days.” (Doctrine and Covenants 27:6)