We have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually!
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The family of Lehi and Sariah left Jerusalem about 600 B.C. because they were told that Jerusalem was going to be destroyed.
After they did, they were also told to return to Jerusalem to get The Brass Plates from Laban which contained the first five (5) books of The Old Testament“for a wise purpose”. It didn’t happen easily! (Laban got killed.)
(These are NOT to be confused with the gold plates which they wrote their history upon!)
Lehi and his family were instructed in how to built a ship and they sailed to North America, ‘the promised land’, under divine direction. They were also commanded to record their history from that time forth which was done on gold plates of ore, which were later delivered to Joseph Smith which he translated from ancient Hebrew into the Book of Mormon.
Why was it so important to take the Brass Plates with them?
3 And he also taught them concerning the records which were engraven on the plates of brass, saying: My sons, I would that ye should remember that were it not for these plates, which contain these records and these commandments, we must have suffered in ignorance, even at this present time, not knowing the mysteries of God.
4 For it were not possible that our father, Lehi, could have remembered all these things, to have taught them to his children, except it were for the help of these plates; for he having been taught in the language of the Egyptians therefore he could read these engravings, and teach them to his children, that thereby they could teach them to their children, and so fulfilling the commandments of God, even down to this present time.
5 I say unto you, my sons, were it not for these things, which have been kept and preserved by the hand of God, that we might read and understand of his mysteries, and have his commandments always before our eyes, that even our fathers would have dwindled in unbelief, and we should have been like unto our brethren, the Lamanites, who know nothing concerning these things, or even do not believe them when they are taught them, because of the traditions of their fathers, which are not correct.
6 O my sons, I would that ye should remember that these sayings are true, and also that these records are true. And behold, also the plates of Nephi, which contain the records and the sayings of our fathers from the time they left Jerusalem until now, and they are true; and we can know of their surety because we have them before our eyes.
(The Lamanites are the
North American Indians oj Jewish decent.)
“And I do this for a wise purpose; for thus it whispereth me,
according to the workings of the Spirit of the Lord which is in me.
And now, I do not know all things;
but the Lord knoweth all things which are to come;
wherefore, he worketh in me to do according to his will.” Words of Mormon 1:7
We now know why The Book of Mormon
was written “for a wise purpose”.
About 600 B.C. in Jerusalem there lived a man named Lehi who with his family was told by God that Jerusalem was to be destroyed, which it was. He and his family were directed to leave Jerusalem and go to “a promised land”. They were to first secure “The Plates of Laban” which contained the first five Books of the Old Testament, and to leave their belongings and travel into the wilderness where they would be shown how to build a ship. When completed, they would be directed to that “promised land” in North America which we know today as The United States of America, the promised land.
(As recorded in Second Nephi Chapter four of The Book of Mormon,
Lehi counsels and blesses his posterity.)
(Notes in parenthesis are to help the reader with these scriptures.)
(Lehi is recorded as speaking to his son Joseph.)
1 And now I speak unto you, Joseph, my last-born. Thou wast born in the wilderness of mine afflictions; yea, in the days of my greatest sorrow did thy mother bear thee.
2 And may the Lord consecrate also unto thee this land, which is a most precious land, for thine inheritance and the inheritance of thy seed with thy brethren, for thy security forever, if it so be that ye shall keep the commandments of the Holy One of Israel.
4 For behold, thou art the fruit of my loins; and I am a descendant of Joseph who was carried captive into Egypt. And great were the covenants of the Lord which he made unto Joseph.
5 Wherefore, Joseph truly saw our day. And he obtained apromise of the Lord, that out of the fruit of his loins the Lord God would raise up a righteous branch unto the house of Israel; not the Messiah, but a branch which was to be broken off, nevertheless, to be remembered in the covenants of the Lord that the Messiah should be made manifest unto them in the latter days, in the spirit of power, unto the bringing of them out ofdarkness unto light—yea, out of hidden darkness and out of captivity unto freedom.
6 For Joseph truly testified, saying: A seer shall the Lord my God raise up, who shall be a choice seer unto the fruit of my loins.
7 Yea, Joseph truly said: Thus saith the Lord unto me: A choice seer will I raise up out of the fruit of thy loins; and he shall be esteemed highly among the fruit of thy loins. And unto him will I give commandment that he shall do a work for the fruit of thy loins, his brethren, which shall be of great worth unto them, even to the bringing of them to the knowledge of the covenants which I have made with thy fathers.
8 And I will give unto him a commandment that he shall do none other work, save the work which I shall command him. And I will make him great in mine eyes; for he shall do my work.
9 And he shall be great like unto Moses, whom I have said I would raise up unto you, to deliver my people, O house of Israel.
10 And Moses will I raise up, to deliver thy people
out of the land of Egypt.
11 But a seer will I raise up out of the fruit of thy loins; and unto him will I give power to bring forth my word (The Book of Mormon) unto the seed of thy loins—and not to the bringing forth my word only, saith the Lord, but to the convincing them of my word, which shall have already gone forth among them. (The Bible)
12 Wherefore, the fruit of thy loins shall write (The Book of Mormon); and the fruit of the loins of Judah shall write (The Bible); and that which shall be written(The Book of Mormon) by the fruit of thy loins, and also that which shall be written by the fruit of the loins of Judah, (The Bible)shall grow together, unto the confounding of false doctrines and laying down of contentions, and establishing peace among the fruit of thy loins, and bringingthem to the knowledge of their fathers in the latter days, and also to the knowledge of my covenants, saith the Lord.
13 And out of weakness he shall be made strong, in that day when my work shall commence among all my people, unto the restoring thee, (The restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ) O house of Israel, saith the Lord.
14 And thus prophesied Joseph, saying: Behold, that seer will the Lord bless; and they that seek to destroy him shall be confounded; for this promise, which I have obtained of the Lord, of the fruit of my loins, shall be fulfilled. Behold, I am sure of the fulfilling of this promise;
15 And his name (Joseph Smith) shall be called after me (Joseph of Egypt); and it shall be after the name of his father (Joseph Smith Sr.). And he shall be like unto me; for the thing, which the Lord shall bring forth by his hand, by the power of the Lord shall bring my people unto salvation.
16 Yea, thus prophesied Joseph: I am sure of this thing, even as I am sure of the promise of Moses; for the Lord hath said unto me, I will preserve thy seed forever.
17 And the Lord hath said: I will raise up a Moses; and I will give power unto him in a rod; and I will give judgment unto him in writing. Yet I will not loose his tongue, that he shall speak much, for I will not make him mighty in speaking. But I will write unto him my law, by the finger of mine own hand; and I will make a spokesman for him.
18 And the Lord said unto me also: I will raise up unto the fruit of thy loins; and I will make for him a spokesman. And I, behold, I will give unto him that he shall write the writing of the fruit of thy loins, unto the fruit of thy loins; and the spokesman of thy loins shall declare it.
19 And the words which he shall write shall be the words which are expedient in my wisdom should go forth unto the fruit of thy loins. And it shall be as if the fruit of thy loins had cried unto them from the dust; for I know their faith.
20 And they shall cry from the dust ; yea, even repentance unto their brethren, even after many generations have gone by them. And it shall come to pass that their cry shall go, even according to the simpleness of their words.
21 Because of their faith their words shall proceed forth out of my mouth unto their brethren who are the fruit of thy loins; and the weakness of their words will I make strong in their faith, unto the remembering of my covenant which I made unto thy fathers.
22 And now, behold, my son Joseph, after this manner did my father of old prophesy.
23 Wherefore, because of this covenant thou art blessed; for thy seed shall not be destroyed, for they shall hearken unto the words of the book.
24 And there shall rise up one mighty among them, who shall do much good, both in word and in deed, being an instrument in the hands of God, with exceeding faith, to work mighty wonders, and do that thing which is great in the sight of God, unto the bringing to pass much restoration unto the house of Israel, and unto the seed of thy brethren.
25 And now, blessed art thou, Joseph. Behold, thou art little; wherefore hearken unto the words of thy brother, Nephi, and it shall be done unto thee even according to the words which I have spoken. Remember the words of thy dying father. Amen.
I testify that these things are true. I know that the one of the purposes of the Book of Mormon was to be another witness that Jesus is The Christ and Savior of all mankind; that Jesus is our Shepherd and Savior of ALL MANKIND around the world; that we are among the “…other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.”John 10:16
We also know that during the days of Constantine and the Nicene Creed, about 325-400 AD, many precious parts and lost books that were taken out of the Bible.
When The Bible AND the Book of Mormon are both read and considered together as one, the Gospel of Jesus Christ with all of its precious parts will make more sense and those confusing parts of the gospel because of those “precious parts that were taken away” become more clear as Jesus intended. We look forward to even MORE records of Jesus Christ that were also recorded and are yet to come forth but which have been hidden from the world for a “wise purpose” of the Lord.
I invite everyone from all faiths to get a FREE copy of The Book of Mormon and read it for yourself. It is the history of the descendants of Lehi’s family or those so called “natives” that Columbus said came out to greet him with gifts when he first landed in America. The native descendants thought Columbus was the “return of that bearded white God”, even Jesus Christ, who promised them that He would once again return. This will help you to understand the things that we have in common with many Christian Churches.
Yes, Jesus Christ visited Lehi’s descendants in the Heartland of North America after He was crucified. His appearance and those things which he said are recorded in The Book of Mormon. Before Jesus Christ returns once again, this world will go through a cleansing of the wicked which is also recorded in The Book of Mormon. Therein also lies “a wise purpose” as scriptures warn us those things which we must do to be preserved.
Since early 1830 the Latter-day Saints have acknowledged the American Indian as a remnant of the house of Israel, who great promises have been extended to. Referring to these people as “Lamanites,” a Book of Mormon prophet declared, “At some period of time they will be brought to believe in his [God’s] word, and to know of the incorrectness of the traditions of their fathers; and many of them will be saved” (Alma 9:17). The 1830 Saints believed these promises and were moved since the early days of the Church to bring to pass their fulfillment.
Lehi In the Book of Mormon, was a Hebrew prophet who led his family and followers from Jerusalem to a promised land in the western hemisphere about 600 B.C..
Lehi was the first prophet among his people in the Book of Mormon.
Lehi fled Jerusalem with his family at the command of the Lord (1 Ne. 2:1–4).
He was a descendant of Joseph, who was sold into Egypt (1 Ne. 5:14).
The Lord gave him a vision of the tree of life (1 Ne. 8:2–35).
Lehi and his sons built a boat and sailed to the western hemisphere (1 Ne. 17–18).
He and his descendants became established in a new land (1 Ne. 18:23–25).
Before he died, Lehi blessed his sons and taught them of Christ and the coming forth of the Book of Mormon in the latter-days (2 Ne. 1:1–4:12).
The place where the Saints will gather and Christ will personally reign with them during the Millennium. Zion (the New Jerusalem) will be built upon the American continent, and the earth will be renewed and receive its paradisiacal glory (A of F 1:10). It also refers to a holy city that will come down out of heaven at the beginning of the Millennium.
There is so much evidence and so many things that occurred in the Heartland model of America that corresponds beautifully with The Book of Mormon events and its people. Those of us who have been on this tour wish to share our feelings with you.
Suzanne and I went on a tour to see these things for ourselves. Here are some opinions and testimonials of those things our group saw and felt that convince us on our Heartland Mounds Tour that these things truly took place in North America.
“The Book of Mormon clearly writes of a ‘Land of Promise’, a land of choice above all other lands. That could only refer to the land of America! The Heartland model offers far more evidence and artifacts that match up with the Book of Mormon descriptions of the ancient civilization than the Meso-American model ever has. Chris Humpherys
“The Lamanites have not gone. They are still here!” D. Wayne Thornock
“It is very clear after viewing the complexity of the existing ruins, that there was a great civilization in the Heartland of America. I know of only one description of this complex of a civilization. That would beThe Book of Mormon. Dee Ray Olson
“I just wish all LDS people would have the advantage to truly investigate the geography of The Book of Mormon. It is inspiring to learn such details and it enhances one’s testimony. Don’t be afraid of learning more and beware of intellectual bias regarding The Book of Mormon geography. Louis Erickson
“I am so impressed with the amazing remains of the Hopewell people who we believe are the Nephites / Lamanites. They appear to be very advanced in their building and craftsmanship. Seeing breastplates of copper and other things mentioned in The Book of Mormon convinces me that they did live in the North America setting . One Cumorah!” Laura Erickson
“I am deeply impressed with so many of the evidences that have come forth and that will yet come forth showing strong correlations with The Book of Mormon history. The Lord promised Joseph Smith that he would cause the ground to bring forth evidence and he has truly done that. To see first hand ancientmetallurgy with breastplates, swords, and many implements of commerce and trade is remarkable. I am thrilled to see bones of all the animals mentioned in The Book of Mormon and they are the same animals that were in the Holy Land where Lehi’s colony came from. These were clean animals, not the unclean as those in Mesa-America. It is humbling to hear of the many gravesites of huge burials of hundreds and thousands of men, women, and children, thrown in. I love the possible sacred site of Bountiful and the sacred feelings of that place. I love this land – the Promised Land – One Cumorah!” Marsha Burnside
“My testimony has been strengthened by standing in sacred places and by learning about the history of my people. As a Native American, I know that life is a sacrey journey and I know that we are sons and daughters of a loving creator. We live in the land that is the most choice land of our Heavenly Father. It is a promised land.”
‘For the eternal purposes of the Lord shall roll on, until all His promises shall be fulfilled.’Mormon 8:22Andrea Barlow – Shoshone – Bannock Tribe
“I haven’t been so excited about something like the Heartland Model in a long time. From the great mound civilizations, the finding of mass graves near Hill Cumorah, the Michigan tablets, the DNA story, all The Book of Mormon geography references, to the history of the political intrigue, it hasn’t done anything but add to my testimony of The Book of Mormon.” Paul Winter
“When I was a missionary in Peru, I was able to see many incredible sites of ancient peoples. But, it was not until the Hopeland Model that I had information about the United States of America that I ‘knew’ when I first read The Book of Mormon. I ‘knew’ The Book of Mormon talked about the USA except for Adam-Ondi-Ahman. Many things are never talked about and yet when you see these sites, the spirit confides what The Book of Mormon testifies. This is the Promised Land! And, the Nephites came here!” Joyce Winter
“It is exciting to participate in a tour in which physical evidence matches and fits so closely to what we read in The Book of Mormon. One’s testimony of the truthfulness of The Book of Mormon and the divine call of the Prophet Joseph Smith is strengthened when you view all the wonderful geographical evidence. To me the spirit testifies more strongly the truthfulness of the people.” Rusty Barlow
“I’ve always believed that this land, the U.S.A., is the specific land referred to in The Book of Mormon as the ‘Promised Land’. Our constitution was brought about for this purpose. The physical evidence of this tour was overwhelming in it’s proof of a civilized society who lived here during The Book of Mormon times. They knew and wrote Hebrew and believed in God. This land also had all the ores, animals and seeds spoken of in The Book of Mormon. This was so informative and inspiring.” Susan Iverson
“This has been a very informative trip. I knew very little about the Hopewell civilization. What I have been experiencing this week and how it ties into The Book of Mormon brings a good feeling to me. I want to learn more! Rod Meldrum does a good job in presenting this information to us. The trip has been very inspiring.” Joan Iveson
“The information given us about the Heartland Model for The Mook of Mormon land is very convincing. The artifacts, the way the animals, plants and mounds match up to the information in The Book of Mormon is amazing! The oral history given by Native Americans also fits the Heartland Model. This trip has been very informative and exciting. I love the way this backs up the claims of our wonderful scriptures!” Robyn Pearson
“I have been particularly interested in the complexity of many of the geometric earthworks in Ohio and also the immense size. To me this demonstrates the sophistication and large size of the Hopewell civilization. Also, the recovery of the ‘Holy Stones’ from some of the mounds shows powerful evidence that they had religious traditions as the people of the Old Testament. I believe those people were brought here by God and have provided us with a second witness, even The Book of Mormon.” Lee Pearson
“This information is amazing. I am astonished that this information has not been taught throughout my life. I am certain that any person that even modestly studies this history will be convinced of its validity. Future history will look at this information and acknowledge its substantial impact on converting people to the truth of The Book of Mormon. I would like to thank Brother Meldrum for his diligence and research.” O. Van Thornick
“This tour has been a further testament of how main-stream archeology continues to verify and validate the claims of The Book of Mormon. Would anyone argue that Native Americans were misunderstood and their history was largely ignored as they were driven from their lands and put onto reservations? The Book of Mormon prophecies reveal that these people who are the covenant people of the Lord will one day become a mighty people. What a thrill to see so many faithful Church members who are becoming very knowledgeable about these evidences which prepares them to better defend The Book of Mormon and thus the gospel and the Church. My hope is that members, once armed with the powerful new research, will be emboldened to share the gospel with millions of others, resulting in the gospel rolling forth with greater success. The gospel is the most powerful and realistically is the only method of correcting and returning God’s children to righteousness. My prayer is that this research and these evidences will play a significant part in bringing about a re-commitment to gospel principles. I feel honored to be privileged to associate with such tremendous seekers of truth!” (I would like to especially thank Alan and Suzanne Osmond for their time, talents and spirit of adventure and desire to pursue truth relating to this research. I have grown to love and respect them immensely.) Rod Meldrum
Get Rod’s latest book with picture evidences!
“I love to find truths and to share them with others. When Suzanne and I met Rod Meldrum and learned about and then saw additional truths, we both felt compelled to go and see for ourselves many of the existing evidences of those who came to this promised land of America before Columbus.
There are definitely two forces in this world. One is for good and the other is for evil. Oh, how I hurt inside for those who followed the evil one and destroyed so much of the Native American History! Oh, how I try to understand why government, the Smithsonian, and wicked and conspiring men tried to erase the Native American history and to label them as savages; to kill them, starve them by killing their ‘beasts’ or buffalo that provided them with food, and to those who offered them blankets infested with smallpox which took many lives of their men, women and children is unbelievable. Only God can fix and mend the pain, the tears, and those oh so many broken hearts.
As a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a ‘Mormon’, I pray to my fellow brothers and sisters in the gospel that you will open your eyes, hearts, and minds to these evidences in the Heartland of North America; the place where Adam and Eve first dwelt; the promised land that was preserved for a righteous people and a free nation; the place where these people’s ancient history and records were revealed in Palmyra, New York by an angel; one of the places where Jesus Christ appeared to His “other sheep” after He was crucified for our sins; the place where the New Jerusalem will soon be built to prepare for the return and second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ where He will dwell for a thousand years with those who survive the world’s ‘baptism of fire’ fulfilling all righteousness.
I am so thankful that we ignored those who tried to discourage and persuade us not to come on this tour to see these mounds and evidences of these most intelligent and humble people who knew geometry and astronomy and built these amazing earthworks. Their works testify of their beliefs and willingness to serve their Creator and to defend their families in righteousness. They built a land of prosperity and security, working with precious ores and mining copper, zinc, silver and gold with machines confirming that there were horses, elephants, the ‘giant’ people of the Jaradites. They were able to continue living the Law of Moses which they could not do in Meso America for many reasons like the fact that there were no sheep, no barley nor wheat or grapes/vineyards. They did not use a lunar based calendar but a solar calendar, their weeks were not seven (7) days but 13 or 20 days (short count and long count) weeks, they used steps in stead of ramps as indicated in scripture for their temples for modesty, they had no horses or elephants, and no evidence for Semitic DNA ancestry/lineage, all of which are indicated by The Book of Mormon.
While all these things are lacking in Meso-america, all of them have been verified by non-Mormon sources in this Hopewell Civilization we have been learning about on this tour! They were all available in North America! The evidence continues to support the claims of The Book of Mormon, which is the foundation of the gospel in these latter days.
I have a testimony of The Book of Mormon. Until our living prophet, Thomas S. Monson, tells us where The Book of Mormon actually took place, and the reasons for so many evidences of the Hopewell civilization and Native Americans that were recorded in that book, then I invite you to “seek and ye shall find” answers to so many questions about North America. Satan, and those who follow him have laid traps and snares to stop us and continually try to stop and destroy us and God’s work and Glory which we are.
May our Native Americans forgive those who have hurt them and their posterity.
I am going to delay the overall propagation article until the next week. In last week’s article I talked about Dr. Larry A. Ruff’s description of grafting heirloom tomatoes onto more vigorous, disease-resistant tomato rootstalk. This was part of one of our Advanced Master Gardener lectures at Thanksgiving Point Gardens Lehi, UT.
I looked on the Internet for the grafting clips and found a seller that had 15 for $10. I checked with one of the seed companies and found that for an additional 50% cost I could get 200. I have already received them and included was 6-page information sheet on the correct tomato grafting procedure. I thought that those who want to try this would enjoy a full description of the process.
They recommend starting the seeds for grafted tomatoes 6-8 weeks before transplant. If one is faster growing than the other then start the slower growing ones a day or two before the faster growing ones so that the stalks will be nearly the same diameter at grafting. (Later, in the article, will be a description of a way to get around this.) Also, grafted tomatoes stop growing during the healing process so they will take one to two weeks longer to get to the transplant stage. They also recommended over-seeding by 25% so that you will have plenty of plants to attempt the grafting.
The plants are usually ready to graft 2 ½ to 3 weeks after sowing. The easiest way check, if they are ready to graft, is to take a 2mm grafting clip and make sure the stalk fits snuggly into it.
They recommend the soil temperature be 80°F (27°C). This can be obtained by using with a soil heating mat and a soil temperature probe. After germination reduce the temperature to 64-66°F (18-19°C) to encourage a stockier plant. They will also need sunlight or grow lights at this point.
Be as sterile as possible in the grafting process. They recommend washing the work area with a bleach solution. Thoroughly clean your hands or use surgical type gloves and don’t smoke in the grafting area. It is best to do it indoors where there is a constant temperature, out of the sunlight and with no fan or draft present. Always use new razor blades and clips. You can even heat sterilize the blade by holding it over an open flame.
The grafting procedure starts by taking the rootstock and cutting the stem with the razor blade at a 45° angle just below the cotyledons. The cotyledons are the embryonic first leaves of the plant and usually have a different appearance than the later leaves. They will be the bottom leaves when the plant forms other leaves. The scion is the portion of the plant that contains the desired leaves, flowers or fruiting portion that carries the genetic portion of the plant that you wish to duplicate. Find a scion whose stem matches the diameter of the rootstock stem and sever it, again just below the cotyledons at a 45° angle. If the stalk is too large on the scion at this point, then move above the cotyledon to where the stem matches the diameter. The same technique can be used if the rootstalk is too large in diameter. If this is done then the rootstock may re-sprout from latent buds. These can be removed later. Some people will remove all but the leaf at the growing point to decrease respiration and the number of leave for the plant to support. Experiment to see which works best in your hands. Put the grafting clip ½ way over the rootstalk half and then put the scion half in place, matching up the angled ends. If the temperature is hotter than desired, mist the plants before grafting. You can continue to re-mist in the healing chamber or go high tech and use a cool mist humidifier in the chamber. Another tip is to put the scions in sterile water to keep them moist if you want to do more than one at a time. If you do multiple sessions of grafting, change the razor blade and re-sterilize the area and your hands.
They recommend a ‘healing chamber’, near the grafting station, to minimize the movement of the grafted plants. The healing chamber keeps the plants at high humidity (80-95%) and in indirect low light to diminish their respiration and drying while the new vascular components reconnect at the graft site. The soil should be kept at 71-74°F (22-23°C). Water the plants the day before planting, but not on the day of grafting. Too much water in the soil will send water up the stalk and push the scion off the graft junction. Try to keep the chamber closed for 3 days while monitoring them from the outside. If they appear to be wilting, you should raise the humidity level. On the 4th day open the chamber and check the moisture level, preferably using a soil moisture probe. If you need to, water the plants using a bottom watering method and then reclose the chamber. On the 5th day allow the humidity to slowly decrease by opening the chamber a small amount. If wilting occurs, close again and retry each subsequent day. Eventually you will get the plants to where they are thriving without the cover on. The plan is to gradually getting them to normal greenhouse temperature and humidity. After a few days in the greenhouse or similar conditions they are ready to be handled. The silicone clips should fall off by themselves as the stem increases in diameter. They claim that the spring-loaded clips have a greater potential to constrict the growth of the stem.
When you plant the grafted tomatoes, be sure that the graft site is about the soil level or the scion will send out roots and negate the whole grafting process. Also prune any suckers as they develop since these will grow into a rootstock plant. At this point treat a grafted tomato the just as you would a normal tomato.
The following site is the source of most of the information in their article and also has step-by-step photos of the process.
This will give you their grower’s library and you can click on: Grafting Tomatoes for Increased Vigor and Disease Resistance.
Another positive factor with grafting is that the yield appears to increase. In 2010 Johnny’s research farm in Albion, Maine used 3 plants from 5 different tomato varieties and grafted them onto a hardy rootstock. They also grew 3 plants on their own rootstock. They showed an average of over 40% greater yield on the grafted plants with one, Geronimo being 66%. The full data can be found by going to the above site and then to: Grafted Tomato Yield Data.
Another site that has step-by-step photos and instructions is:
The Newark Earthworks were the largest set of geometric earthen enclosures in the world.
They are believed to have been built by what people referred to as Indians. But what some may not know is that there is growing evidence that at least some of them might have been of Jewish or Hebrew ancestry.
The Bat Creek Stone – In Ohio
Glenn Beck – Fox News Channel
Photo copyright Warren W. Dexter, 1986. Used by permission.
Cherokee or Hebrew?
The Bat Creek Stone was professionally excavated in 1889 from an undisturbed burial mound in Eastern Tennessee by the Smithsonian’s Mound Survey project. The director of the project, Cyrus Thomas, initially declared that the curious inscription on the stone were “beyond question letters of the Cherokee alphabet.” (Thomas 1894: 391:4)
In the 1960s, Henriette Mertz and Corey Ayoob both noticed that the inscription, when inverted from Thomas’s orientation to that of the above photograph, instead appeared to be ancient Semitic. The late Semitic languages scholar Cyrus Gordon (1971a, 1971b, 1972) confirmed that it is Semitic, and specifically Paleo-Hebrew of approximately the first or second century A.D. According to him, the five letters to the left of the comma-shaped word divider read, from right to left, LYHWD, or “for Judea.” He noted that the broken letter on the far left is consistent with mem, in which case this word would instead read LYHWD[M], or “for the Judeans.”
Hebrew scholar and archaeologist Robert Stieglitz (1976) confirmed Gordon’s reading of the longer word, and identifed the second letter of the shorter word as a qoph. Mertz (1964) herself had first proposed that the first letter is a (reversed) resh. The main line would then read RQ , LYHWD[M], i.e. “Only for Judea,” or “Only for the Judeans” if the broken letter is included.
In Paleo-Hebrew, words are required to be separated by a dot or short diagonal stroke serving as a word divider, rather than by a space as in English or modern Hebrew. The short diagonal word divider used on the Bat Creek inscription is less common than the dot, but appears both in the Siloam inscription and the Qumran Paleo-Hebrew Leviticus scroll.
In 1988, wood fragments found with the inscription were Carbon-14 dated to somewhere between 32 A.D. and 769 A.D.(McCulloch 1988). This range is consistent with Gordon’s dating of the letters.
In McCulloch (1988) I note that although a few of the letters could be taken for Cherokee in either orientation, and although several of the letters are not perfect as Paleo-Hebrew, the inscription matches Hebrew much better than Cherokee. As English, for example, the main line could be forced to read “4SENL , YP” (sic) in the Mertz/Gordon orientation, or “dh ‘ 7NESb” in Thomas’s orientation. The match to Cherokee is no better than to English, and no one has ever proposed a Cherokee reading of the inscription.
The lone letter below the main line is problematic, but could conceivably be either an aleph or a waw, in which case it might be a numeral indicating Year 1 or 6, respectively, of some era. The two vertical strokes above the main line are test scratches made by an unknown party while the stone was at the Smithsonian, sometime between 1894 and 1971.
Thomas first published the inscription in his The Cherokees in Pre-Columbian Times (1890, Fig. 7), as shown below, but inverted to Gordon’s proposed Hebrew orientation. Despite the impeccable detail of this lithograph, there are no signs of the two vertical strokes that now are present in the upper left corner.
Thomas (1890, Fig. 7). This image itself is long out of copyright, and so is public domain.
This digital scan may be freely used, with a link to this webpage.
Click here for larger image.
Surely Hebrew, but Masonic?
American archaeologists Robert C. Mainfort, Jr., and Mary L. Kwas have recently argued in American Antiquity (2004) that the inscription was copied from an illustration in an 1870 Masonic reference book, and is therefore clearly a nineteenth century forgery that must have been introduced by the Smithsonian field assistant who found it. The entry in question, an 1860s artist’s impression of how the Biblical phrase QDSh LYHWH, or “Holy to Yahweh,” would have looked in Paleo-Hebrew letters, is reproduced below:
Macoy (1868, p. 134)
Both inscriptions do contain two words, with the identical string LYHW- beginning the longer second word in both cases. However, the fifth letter of the second word is clearly different in the two cases. The Bat Creek word ends with a daleth, which also happens to be the second letter of the first word in the Masonic illustration, making the Bat Creek word “for Judea.” The Masonic word ends with a second he, which makes it “for Yahweh” instead. The Bat Creek word also has the remnant of a sixth letter, presumably mem, that is completely absent from Macoy’s illustration.
In fact it is not surprising that two Hebrew inscriptions would both contain the string LYHW-. The common prefix L- simply forms the dative case, indicating for, to, or belonging to the word that follows. The string YHW-, or Yahu-, the first three letters of the name YHWH or Yahweh of the Hebrew God, is a common theophoric component of Hebrew names. Judah or Yehud (YHWD in the Persian era, according to Gordon) is one such “Yahwist” name. A modern example of such a name is that of Benjamin Netanyahu, prime minister of Israel from 1996-1999 and 2009-present.
The January/February 2006 Biblical Archaeology Review happens to contain a photograph of a bulla (seal impression) that was recently excavated from Jersualem’s City of David under the supervision of Hebrew University archaeologist Eilat Mazar. The inscription, in Old Hebrew letters closely related to those in the Macoy illustration, begins with the Masonic string LYHW- in the word LYHWKL, or “belonging to Yehucal” (Mazar 2006: 26). The second line actually contains the tell-tale string -YHW again, in the name of Yehucal’s father, ShLMYHW or Shelemiyahu. However, the presence of the string LYHW- on both the Yehucal bulla and the Masonic illustration does not prove that the Mazar assistant who supposedly found the new bulla cribbed it from Macoy’s book, but merely that this is a common component of Hebrew inscriptions. Likewise, the presence of this string on Bat Creek does not require it to have been copied from Macoy.
The shorter first words of the Bat Creek and Masonic inscriptions are also clearly different, the Bat Creek word having two letters and the Masonic word three. The distinctive W-like shin of the Biblical QDSh (Qedosh) is entirely missing on Bat Creek. The first letters of the two words do have essentially the same form, but are in fact different: In Macoy’s illustration, this is clearly meant to be a qoph, but as such is not well made, since in Paleo-Hebrew it should have, in addition to a loop on the right, an arm to the left with an uptick at the end. This arm in fact appears on the second Bat Creek letter, which was consequently identified by Stieglitz as a qoph. Since this alternate form of Q is already present on Bat Creek, the first letter must be something different, and makes most sense as an inverted (rho-wise) resh, as originally proposed by Mertz. The second letter (D) on the Masonic inscription does look a little like the second letter (Q) on Bat Creek, but in fact there is already a D on Bat Creek, at the end of the second word, that looks nothing like the second Bat Creek letter. These are therefore different letters as well.
However, the most telling difference between the Bat Creek and Masonic inscriptions is in the different ways the two words are separated. Macoy’s illustrator, who was undoubtedly working from a newly-available dictionary chart of Jewish War coinscript letters to transcribe standard Square Hebrew into the older alphabet, erroneously assumed that the words should be separated by a space, as in English or modern Hebrew. Bat Creek instead correctly uses a word divider. There is no way this subtle detail could have been copied from Macoy’s illustration, even if the copyist threw in a few random changes to disguise his or her source.
If nothing else, the Masonic illustration newly discovered by Mainfort and Kwas does show that Bat Creek has an undeniable affinity to Paleo-Hebrew, and that this affinity should have been recognized already in 1889 by any competent student of antiquities. The fact that Thomas and subsequent American archaeologists failed to see this affinity until it was pointed out by Mertz, Ayoob and Gordon demonstrates their incompetence to adequately classify and evaluate ancient material. It does not, however, reflect on the Mound Survey’s data-collecting abilities per se.
My reply to the new Mainfort and Kwas article, enumerating these and other considerations, was summarily rejected by American Antiquity as being “far outside the expertise and interests of the readership.” It has nevertheless been accepted for publication in Pre-Columbiana, and a PDF of the draft is online at http://www.econ.ohio-state.edu/jhm/arch/AmerAntiq.pdf.
Or is it Welsh Coelbren?
In 2002, researchers Alan Wilson, Baram A. Blackett, and Jim Michael announced that the Bat Creek stone is in fact inscribed with the the ancient Welsh Coelbren alphabet, and reads, in Welsh, “Madoc the ruler he is.” These authors identify the Bat Creek tumulus as “the likely tomb of Prince Madoc” (Wilson et al. 2002).
Madoc was a Welsh prince who is reputed to have sailed to America in 1170 A.D. (see, e.g. Kimberley (2000)). However, Wilson et al. maintain that he was in fact a brother of King Arthur II, and sailed in 562 A.D. This would reconcile their reading of the inscription with the C-14 date of 32 A.D. – 769 A.D.
Wilson et al. give no reference for what they regard as an authoritative source for the Coelbren alphabet, and give no indication as to how they read the letters on the Bat Creek stone in this alphabet, or what Welsh words they find there. A Coelbren alphabet is provided online by Serenwen (undated). However, I see no obvious relation of the Serenwen alphabet to the Bat Creek letters.
A further complication is that it is widely believed, even among Celtic enthusiasts, (e.g. Jones 2004) that Coelbren itself is the modern invention of Edward Williams (1747-1826), known also as Iolo Morgannwg.
Although Gordon’s Paleo-Hebrew reading of the Bat Creek inscription works much better than Thomas’s original Cherokee interpretation, the fit as Hebrew is by no means perfect (McCarter 1993). If it could be shown to work even better as Coelbren, or any other alphabet, the Hebrew reading would have to be abandoned. Furthermore, if the Bat Creek stone, which was professionally excavated and whose context been carbon-dated to ancient times, were clearly engraved in Coelbren letters, that would itself be sufficient to vindicate the authenticity of Coelbren and to exonerate Morgannwg. However, until Wilson et al. publish the details of their claim, there is no basis for either of these conclusions.
Since the above was written, Wilson et al. have published a book with details of their analysis, which I have not yet had time to critique.
Where it’s at.
The Bat Creek stone long lay out of sight in a back room of the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C., but currently it is on indefinite loan to the McClung Museum of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where it is prominently on display.
The findspot was about 40 miles south of Knoxville, in what is now a TVA recreational area on the shore of Lake Telico at the mouth of Bat Creek. The mound itself has been plowed flat, and only its approximate location is known.
Perhaps the TVA could be prevailed upon to mark a path from old highway 72 to the approximate site, possibly making a complete loop around High Top, with a spur trail to the summit. A picnic table and a small sign at the approximate site of the mound would make an appropriate memorial for the find, as well as a pleasant destination for hikers and boaters.
Even more ambitiously, the mound and its vegetation could be reconstructed at a plausible spot. Bat Creek Mound #3, with the inscription and 9 burials, was “of small size, measuring but 28 feet in diameter and 5 feet in height,” according to the offical report. Rebuilding it would require only about 38 cubic yards of earth. The mound had some large sassafras trees standing on it when it was exacavated. The owner stated that he had cut trees from the mound 40 years before the excavation and that it “had been covered by a cluster of trees and grapevines as long ago as the oldest settler in the locality could recollect. At the time the excavation was made there was an old rotten stump yet on the top, the roots of which ran down to the skeletons.” A 3-foot black oak tree still stood on nearby Bat Creek Mound #2 at the time of excavation, so it is not unlikely that Mound #3’s trees were of the same type. A cluster of black oak and sassafras trees, along with some grape vines, planted on the rebuilt mound, would therefore provide an authentic invocation of the 19th century setting, as well as shade for picnickers.
A new petrographic analysis of the stone by Scott Wolter and Richard Stehly of American Petrographic Services concludes,
1. Our geological findings are consistent with the Smithsonian Institute’s field report written by John W. Emmert.
2. The complete lack of the orange-colored silty-clay residue in any of the characters of the inscription is consistent with many hundreds of years of weathering in a wet earth mound comprised of soil and “hard red clay.”
3. The inscribed stone and all the other artifacts and remains found in the mound with it, can be no younger than when the bodies of the deceased were buried inside the mound. (Wolter and Stehly 2010)
Archaeologists have yet to react to this new study.
Thanks to the late Warren W. Dexter, author with Donna Martin of America’s Ancient Stone Relics , Academy Books, 1995, for permission to use the above photograph of the Bat Creek stone. Another of Dexter’s excellent photographs of the inscription appears in BAR July/Aug. 1993, p. 46. Dexter passed away Dec. 4, 2007, at 96.
Publishers Note: The Book of Mormon records that Lehi and his family were commanded to leave Jerusalem as it was going to be destroyed. Lehi with his wife Sarah, their sons and the daughters of Ishmael left Jerusalem. They took with them the Brass Plates of Laban, which contained the writings of the Old Testament. They built a ship and came to America. (600 B,C to 400 A.D.) Learn More
Gordon, Cyrus, “Stone Inscription Found in Tennessee Proves that America was Discovered 1500 Years before Columbus,” Argosy Magazine, Jan. 1971a. Reprinted inAncient American Vol. 14, No. 88 (Sept. 2010). Carried by Barnes and Noble bookstores.
Gordon, Cyrus, Before Columbus (New York, Crown, 1971b), Appendix.
Gordon, Cyrus, “The Bat Creek Inscription,” in C.H. Gordon, ed., The Book of the Descendants of Doctor Benjamin Lee and Dorothy Gordon, pp. 5-18. Ventnor Publishers, Ventnor, N.J., 1972.
Jones, Mary, “Edward Williams/’Iolo Morgannwg’,” a page of Jones’ Celtic Encyclopedia, at www.maryjones.us/jce/iolo.html. Dated 2004, accessed 12/28/05.
Kimberley, Howard, “Madoc 1170: Were the Welsh the First European Americans?,” undated website at www.madoc1170.com/home.htm. Accessed 12/28/05.
Macoy, Robert, General History, Cyclopedia and Dictionary of Freemasonry, Masonic Publishing Co., New York, 3rd ed., 1868, p. 134. (Same illustration is on p. 169 of 1870 edition and 1989 reprint edition; illustration not in 1867 edition).
Mainfort, Robert C., and Mary L. Kwas, “The Bat Creek Stone Revisited: A Fraud Exposed,” American Antiquity64 (Oct. 2004): 761-769.
Mazar, Eilat, “Did I Find King David’s Palace?,” Biblical Archaeology Review, Vol. 32 no. 1 (Jan./Feb. 2006): 16-27, 70.
Mertz, Henriette, The Wine Dark Sea: Homer’s Heroic Epic of the North Atlantic,, Chicago, 1964.
McCulloch, J. Huston, “The Bat Creek Inscription — Cherokee or Hebrew?,” Tennessee Anthropologist 1988(2), pp. 79-123. See also comment by Robert C. Mainfort, Jr. and Mary L. Kwas, TA 1991(1), pp. 1-19, reply by JHM TA Spring 1993, pp. 1-16, rejoinder by M&K, TA Fall 1993, pp. 87-93. A pamphlet containing these articles is available for $6.00 from the McClung Museum bookstore.
McCulloch, J. Huston, “The Bat Creek Inscription: Did Judean Refugees Escape to Tennessee?”Biblical Archaeology Review July/August 1993, pp. 46-53 ff. See also comment by P. Kyle McCarter, BAR July/August 1993, pp. 54-55 ff., reply by JHM BAR Nov./Dec. 1993, pp. 14-16, and numerous letters, esp. those by Robt. R. Stieglitz and Marshall McKusick, in the Nov./Dec. 1993 and Jan./Feb. 1994 BAR .
So that you may know “the truth of all things”, I wish to share with you ancient records that foretold of what would happen to“Plain and Precious Parts” of The Bible that were “kept back by that abominable church which is the mother of harlots, saith the Lamb”! (The Lamb is Jesus)
An Ancient American History records what happened HERE.
Note: The Bible itself speaks of other authoritative books of scripture which are missing including books of
(Please accept this only as an act of love and kindness for all mankind. “The Truth shall set you free”!)
. . . . . . . . . .
Chapter 13 (A Description) About 600–592 B.C. – Nephi sees in vision the church of the devil set up among the Gentiles,(The Old World)the discovery and colonizing of America (Lehi’s family who left Jerusalem and came to America, 600 B.C.), the loss of many plain and precious parts of the Bible, the resultant state of Gentile apostasy(The killing of the Apostles and the Fall of Jesus’s Church) , the restoration of the gospel, the coming forth of latter-day scripture(God the Father and Jesus Christ’s visitation to Joseph Smith in 1830 with the return of John the Baptist, Apostles Peter, James and John, return of Elijah the Prophet to Joseph Smith and in restoring Jesus’s Church), and the building up of Zion. (The Pure in heart”)
Selected verses of scriptures:
34And it came to pass that the angel of the Lord spake unto me, saying: Behold, saith the Lamb of God (Jesus), after I have avisited the bremnant of the house of Israel (People as recorded in the Bible) —and this remnant of whom I speak is the seed of thy father (Lehi and his family that left Jerusalem and came to America) —wherefore, after I have visited them in judgment, and smitten them (Of the Old World) by the hand of the Gentiles, and after the Gentiles do cstumble exceedingly, because of the most plain and precious parts of the dgospel of the Lamb (from The bible) which have been kept back by that abominable church, which is the mother of harlots, saith the Lamb (Jesus)—I will be merciful unto the eGentiles (followers of Christ) in that day, insomuch that I will fbring forth unto them, in mine own power, much of my ggospel, which shall be plain and precious, saith the Lamb. (Jesus…As contained in the Book of Mormon.)
35For, behold, saith the Lamb (Jesus): I will manifest myself unto thy seed (Lehi’s family in America),that they shall write many things which I shall minister unto them, which shall be plain and precious; and after thy seed shall be destroyed, and dwindle in unbelief (Lehi’s family in America), and also the seed of thy brethren (Jesus’s followers in the Old World), behold, athese things shall be hid up (Upper State of New York), to come forth unto the Gentiles, by the gift and power of the Lamb.…………………………………………………………………………………………..Jesus’s visit in America
(They were buried by Lehi’s descendants, later to be shown by an angel to Joseph Smith, theProphet.)
36And in them shall be written my agospel, saith the Lamb, and my brock and my salvation. (God’s word and teachings.)
37And ablessed are they who shall seek to bring forth my bZion(The pure in heart) at that day, for they shall have the cgift and the dpower of the Holy Ghost; and if they eendure unto the end they shall be flifted up at the last day, and shall be saved in the everlasting gkingdom of the Lamb; and whoso shall hpublish peace, yea, tidings of great joy, how beautiful upon the mountains shall they be. (This is the Restored Church of Jesus Christ [of Latter-day Saints]. )
38And it came to pass that I beheld the remnant of the seed of my brethren (Lehi’s family from Jerusalem), and also the abook of the Lamb of God, which had proceeded forth from the mouth of the Jew (The Brass Plates of Laban which was a copy of the Bible that Lehi’s family also brought from Jerusalem, 600 B.C.), that it came forth from the Gentiles (Followers of Jesus – Old World)bunto the remnant of the seed of my brethren. (Lehi’s family in America.)
39And after it had come forth unto them I beheld aother bbooks (Book of Mormon, and Books from the Lost Ten Tribes, yet to be known), which came forth by the power of the Lamb (Jesus), from the Gentiles unto them (Bible), unto the cconvincing of the Gentiles (Followers of Jesus – Old World)and the remnant of the seed of my brethren(Lehi’s family in America), and also the Jews who were scattered upon all the face of the earth (All other countries), that the records of the prophets and of the twelve apostles of the Lamb are dtrue.
40And the angel spake unto me, saying: These alast records, which thou hast seen among the Gentiles (The Book of Mormon), shall bestablish the truth of the cfirst (The Bible), which are of the dtwelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them; and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God (Jesus) is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the eSavior of the world; and that all men must come unto him, or they cannot be saved.
41And they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb (Jesus’s words from all scriptures); and the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed (Decendents of Lehi in America), as well as in the arecords of the twelve apostles of the Lamb (The Bible); wherefore they both (The Bible and The Book of Mormon) shall be established in bone (One Purpose); for there is cone God and one dShepherd over all the earth.
42And the time cometh that he shall manifest himself unto all nations (The Second Coming of Jesus Christ), both unto the aJews and also unto the Gentiles; and after he has manifested himself unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles, then he shall manifest himself unto the Gentiles and also unto the Jews, and the blast shall be first, and the cfirst shall be last.
As recorded, the day is coming soon when, “Yea, every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess before him. Yea, even at the last day, when all men shall stand to be judged of him, then shall they confess that he is God; then shall they confess, who live without God in the world, that the judgment of an everlasting punishment is just upon them; and they shall quake, and tremble, and shrink beneath the glance of his all-searching eye. (The Last Days)” Mosiah 27:31
I, Alan Osmond, share these things openly with you, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16
As Jesus said, these records were recorded for “a wise purpose” that the “fullness of the gospel, which was lost from the Bible shall be known by the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon and The Bible compliment and “prove” each other to be true as they contain Jesus’s words. Jesus is “the same yesterday, today, and forever,” and what he says to one will NOT conflict with the other!
Actually, this knowledge fulfills prophecy in the Bible in the Book of Ezekiel 37:16 and 19 where it says,
16 “Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one astick, (or Book) and bwrite upon it, For cJudah, (Decendants of Judah or The Bible) and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick (or Book), and dwrite upon it, For eJoseph(Descendants of Joseph or The Book of Mormon), the fstickof Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions:
• • •
19 Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the stickofaJoseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stickofJudah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand.
(One in Purpose and One in His word.)
This should help all churches and religions better understand each other; especially when we get more records of Jesus’s visit to The Lost Ten Tribes which will come in the future!
I share with you this article as a follow up to several questions about my article that I posted yesterday.
Mormon is a nickname for members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Sometimes called, LDS.
Alan Osmond A Mormon
The Nature Of Covenants. (Or Promises)
• What is a covenant? Why are Latter-day Saints called a covenant people?
From the beginning, the Lord has made covenants with His children on earth. When His people make covenants (or promises) with Him, they know what He expects of them and what blessings they may expect from Him. They can better carry out His work on earth. The people who covenant with the Lord and with whom the Lord makes covenants are known as the Lord’s covenant people. Members of the Church are part of the Lord’s covenant people.
Within the gospel, a covenant means a sacred agreement or mutual promise between God and a person or a group of people. In making a covenant, God promises a blessing for obedience to particular commandments. He sets the terms of His covenants, and He reveals these terms to His prophets. If we choose to obey the terms of the covenant, we receive promised blessings. If we choose not to obey, He withholds the blessings, and in some instances a penalty also is given.
For example, when we join the Church we make several covenants with God. We covenant with the Savior at baptism to take upon ourselves His name. He promises that “as many as repent and are baptized in my name, which is Jesus Christ, and endure to the end, the same shall be saved” (D&C 18:22).
We covenant with the Lord as we partake of the sacrament . We promise to take His name upon ourselves, to remember Him, and to obey His commandments. We are promised that the Holy Spirit will be with us. (See D&C 20:77–79.)
When we receive temple ordinances, we make other sacred covenants and are promised exaltation for faithful obedience (see D&C 132; .
He made a special covenant with Abraham and his descendants that blesses members of the Church and all nations of the earth today.
• Think about the covenants you have made with God and the blessings He has promised you for keeping these covenants.
God’s Covenant with Abraham and His Descendants
• What is the Abrahamic covenant?
Abraham, an Old Testament prophet, was a very righteous man. He refused to worship his father’s idols. He kept all of the Lord’s commandments. Because of Abraham’s righteousness, the Lord made a covenant with him and his descendants.
The Lord promised Abraham that he would have numberless descendants. He promised that all of them would be entitled to receive the gospel, the blessings of the priesthood, and all of the ordinances of exaltation. These descendants, through the power of the priesthood, would carry the gospel to all nations. Through them, all the families of the earth would be blessed (see Abraham 2:11). God further promised that if they were righteous He would establish His covenant with all generations of Abraham’s children (see Genesis 17:4–8).
• How do the commandments and promises in the Abrahamic covenant apply to us?
Members of the Church Are a Covenant People
• What blessings and responsibilities come to God’s covenant people today?
The blood descendants of Abraham are not the only people whom God calls His covenant people. In speaking to Abraham, God said, “As many as receive this Gospel shall be called after thy name, and shall be accounted thy seed [lineage], and shall rise up and bless thee, as their father” (Abraham 2:10). Thus, two groups of people are included in the covenant made with Abraham: (1) Abraham’s righteous blood descendants and (2) those adopted into his lineage by accepting and living the gospel of Jesus Christ (see 2 Nephi 30:2).
When we are baptized into the Church, we enter into the covenant the Lord made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (see Galatians 3:26–29). If we are obedient, we inherit the blessings of that covenant. We have the right to receive help and guidance from the Holy Ghost. Worthy males have the right to hold the priesthood. Families can receive the blessings of the priesthood.We can gain eternal life in the celestial kingdom. There are no greater blessings than these.
Along with the blessings we receive as the Lord’s covenant people, we have great responsibilities. The Lord promised Abraham that through his descendants the gospel would be taken to all the earth. We are fulfilling this responsibility through the full-time missionary program of the Church and the missionary work done by the members. This opportunity to preach the gospel to all the world belongs only to the Lord’s Church and His covenant people.
As the Lord’s covenant people, we should keep His commandments. The Lord said, “I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise” (D&C 82:10). If we reject our covenant after accepting the gospel, the covenant becomes void and we will stand condemned before God (see D&C 132:4). He has said: “Refrain from sin, lest sore judgments fall upon your heads. For of him unto whom much is given much is required; and he who sins against the greater light shall receive the greater condemnation” (D&C 82:2–3).
The New and Everlasting Covenant
• What do we promise to do when we accept the gospel? What blessings does Heavenly Father give us as we keep these promises?
The fulness of the gospel is called the new and everlasting covenant. It includes the covenants made at baptism, during the sacrament, in the temple, and at any other time. The Lord calls it everlasting because it is ordained by an everlasting God and because the covenant will never be changed. He gave this same covenant to Adam, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, and other prophets. In this sense it is not new. But the Lord calls it new because each time the gospel is restored after being taken from the earth, it is new to the people who receive it (see Jeremiah 31:31–34; Ezekiel 37:26).
When we accept the new and everlasting covenant, we agree to repent, be baptized, receive the Holy Ghost, receive our endowments, receive the covenant of marriage in the temple, and follow and obey Christ to the end of our lives. As we keep our covenants, our Heavenly Father promises us that we will receive exaltation in the celestial kingdom (see D&C 132:20–24;
The greatness of that promise is hard for mortals to understand. The commandments He gives are for our benefit, and as we are faithful we may forever share the blessings and beauties of heaven and earth. We may live in His presence and partake of His love, compassion, power, greatness, knowledge, wisdom, glory, and dominions.
• What does being the Lord’s covenant people have to do with how we dress, act, and keep the commandments of God?
“We urge members of the Church and all Americans to begin now to reflect more intently on the meaning and importance of the Constitution, and of adherence to its principles. . . .
“In these challenging days, when there are so many influences which would divert us, there is a need to rededicate ourselves to the lofty principles and practices of our Founding Fathers.
“Let us not permit these admonitions of our living prophets to fall on deaf ears. Let us, as they direct, learn the meaning and importance of our God-ordained Constitution. Let us rededicate ourselves to the lofty principles and practices of those wise men whom God raised up to give us our priceless freedom. Our liberties, our salvation, our well-being as a church and as anation depend upon it.”
Next to life, we express gratitude for the gift of free agency. When thou didst create man, thou placed within him part of thine Omnipotence and bade him choose for himself. Liberty and conscience thus became a sacred part of human nature. Freedom not only to think, but to speak and act, is a God-given privilege.[Dedication of the London Temple by President David O. McKay]
Hear the words of President Wilford Woodruff:
Those men who laid the foundation of this American government and signed the Declaration of Independence were the best spirits the God of Heaven could find on the face of the earth. They were choice spirits . . . inspired of the Lord.
Everyone of those men that signed the Declaration of Independence, with George Washington, . . . called upon me, as an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, in the Temple at St. George two consecutive nights and demanded at my hand that I should go forth and attend to the ordinances of the house of God for them. . . .
Would those spirits have called upon me, as an Elder in Israel, to perform that work if they had not been noble spirits before God? They would not. . . . Said they: “. . . We laid the foundation of the government you now enjoy, and we never apostatized from it, but we remained true to it and were faithful to God.”
America Is A ‘Promised Land’. (Records of History)
And it came to pass after we had all gone down into the ship, and had taken with us our provisions and things which had been commanded us, we did put forth into the sea and were driven forth before the wind towards the promisedland.
And it came to pass that I, Nephi, did guide the ship, that we sailed again towards the promisedland.
And it came to pass that after we had sailed for the space of many days we did arrive at the promisedland; and we went forth upon the land, and did pitch our tents; and we did call it the promisedland. 1 Ne. 18: 8, 22-23, 25
And he also spake unto them concerning the land of promise, which they had obtained—how merciful the Lord had been in warning us that we should flee out of the land of Jerusalem.
But, said he, notwithstanding our afflictions, we have obtained a land of promise, a land which is choice above all other lands; a land which the Lord God hath covenanted with me should be a land for the inheritance of my seed.
Yea, the Lord hath covenanted this land unto me, and to my children forever, and also all those who should be led out of other countries by the hand of the Lord.
Wherefore, I, Lehi, have obtained a promise, that inasmuch as those whom the Lord God shall bring out of the land of Jerusalem shall keep his commandments, they shall prosper upon the face of this land; and they shall be kept from all other nations, that they may possess this land unto themselves. And if it so be that they shall keep his commandments they shall be blessed upon the face of this land, and there shall be none to molest them, nor to take away the land of their inheritance; and they shall dwell safely forever.
But behold, when the time cometh that they shall dwindle in unbelief, after they have received so great blessings from the hand of the Lord—having a knowledge of the creation of the earth, and all men, knowing the great and marvelous works of the Lord from the creation of the world; having power given them to do all things by faith; having all the commandments from the beginning, and having been brought by his infinite goodness into this precious land of promise—behold, I say, if the day shall come that they will reject the Holy One of Israel, the true Messiah, their Redeemer and their God, behold, the judgments of him that is just shall rest upon them. 2 Ne. 1: 3, 5, 9-10, 24
IT’S TIME TO “GET NOIZ”…FOR GOOD!
THE TRUTH NEEDS NO AGENDA!
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