Moroni cuts in here and says that he cannot make a full account of all the things the Lord says to the brother of Jared. However, he will add his witness (because he may have read the full account) that Christ appeared to him in the same likeness as he did when he visited the Nephites. That’s really interesting. How many records did Moroni have to read in order to know what to keep and what not too? He probably finished all the Jaredite record. If he can say that Jesus Christ looked the same he did as when he appeared to the Nephites, the Jaredite record must have a description of him as well. That’s cool to think that we didn’t get all the Jaredite record either.
Moving From Faith to Knowlege
Verse 18 is also good. Jesus Christ ministered unto the brother of Jared, in the same manner, he did unto the Nephites all that he might know that he was good. How did he minister unto him? Taught him, showed him works? Healed any of his ailments? Really, we don’t have a complete record of what Jesus did or said among the Nephites. It was probably too sacred to write. This makes me wonder how much we don’t have recorded of Jesus. Sure we have a lot but it isn’t complete for sure. We don’t have a record of one on one interviews/conversations between apostles either in the Old World or the New World. Something tells me that Jesus is a lot cooler and powerful and loving and merciful, pretty much that he has a more full character than the scriptures make him out to be. Quite frankly, words can’t describe it. that’s how it works with spiritual experiences and beings. Words just don’t do it justice.
The brother of Jared no longer had faith, but rather, a perfect knowledge, for he knew and doubted nothing. Remember, faith is a hope for things which are not seen, which are true. Once you have seen that thing, which is true, you don’t have faith, you have knowledge.
Because he had this perfect knowledge, he could not be kept from within the veil. Interesting that his knowledge kept the veil from him. It said the same thing about his faith. Actually here is what I think. His faith removed the veil but his knowledge kept it removed. This just goes to show that knowledge is of eternal importance. The more you know, the better. Because not only will the knowledge you gained rise with you, it will allow you to be more fully receive knowledge. It’s a slippery slope. Once you gain a little knowledge, it tastes good and you want to learn more and more until pretty soon, the entire brain is filled up with spiritual knowledge and amazing things start to happen because as a result, your faith has grown as well as the ability to exercise that faith.
The Lord tells the brother of Jared to not suffer the things which he has seen and heard of going forth to the world until Jesus Christ shall glorify his name in the flesh. Until that time, he is to treasure up the things which he has seen and heard and stress no more.
The Urim and Thummim
The Lord gave the brother of Jared a Urim and Thummin. One that eventually would be sealed up and used by Joseph Smith to translate the plates. how cool would that be to use the very Urim and Thummim used by the brother of Jared!? Cross reference the Bible Dictionary entry on the Urim and Thummim for some really cool things about them. I have already written about them in another notebook so I will forego talking about them here. Cross reference Mosiah 8:13, those who are able to translate using the Urim and Thummin are called seers. You cannot use them except God commands you to. If you use them without permission, you perish (although how is not elaborated on). Translating with this instrument is a gift from God. One thing I’m wondering about the Urim and Thummim is do they all come from God? Or can a man make them and have God bless the stones? Something to think about?
After the Lord said these things, he showed unto him all the inhabitants of the Earth. Those which had been and would be. And he beheld everything, even unto the ends of the Earth. This wasn’t the first and certainly not the last time things like this would happen. Enoch before was shown the same thing. Abraham after also would be shown these things. Moses and Isaiah as well. I want to see it all some day! I desire to know. That’s why I read. To know what they knew.
Verse 4 of Chapter 4. Moroni says that he is writing upon the plates the very things which the brother of Jared saw. So Moroni isn’t copying the story down word for word, he is reading the actual account and summarizing as he goes, throwing in important spiritual experiences and knowledge. Kind of similar to what I’m doing. But it is interesting because that means we don’t have the story of the Jaredites word for word. Verse 4 also says that there was never anything greater made manifest than what was made manifest unto the brother of Jared. This is a big statement because Moroni is living in 400 AD. He has a record of the Bible, he knows about Moses and Abraham. He is saying that what was revealed that day to the brother of Jared surpassed all that. I’ve read Moses and Abraham and Revelations. There is a lot of information. I’ve written notebooks on all of them as well. It takes a long time to study, understand, and comprehend it. The brother of Jared got more than that. It blows my mind. Can you imagine coming away from this experience? Having had so much shown to you? it would change your entire outlook on life and your priorities would change. Everything. Cross reference Ether 5:1. The “very things” which the brother of Jared saw are sealed up. They will come forth in due time.
More Will Be Revealed When the Gentiles Repent
The Lord says that the part of the Jaredite plates that are sealed up are not going to be revealed unto the Gentiles until they repent of their sins and become clean before Him. In that day, the people will exercise faith such as the brother of Jared had. How long do you think this will be? Seems like the people around us are getting more and more wicked all the time. I guess the time is quickly coming where the number of righteous will far outweigh the number of unrighteous. Maybe then the qualifications will be met. Another thing I would like to point out is the specific reference to the Gentiles. God could have said that he would reveal it to all mankind after they met this requirement. But he said Gentiles. I guess that pretty much means mankind.
When this qualification is met, not only will the revelation of the brother of Jared be unfolded but also all his other revelations. Cross reference 2 Nephi 27:22. We aren’t talking about dream revelations per se but rather revelations as in scripture. Can you imagine getting not only the revelation of the brother of Jared but also all the other scriptures that haven’t yet been revealed? We are talking lost ten tribes, any other people the Lord has “led out” plus other books, to complete the Bible. We are talking enough scriptures that you could take months or even years to translate without the help of a Urim and Thummim. How cool would it be to double or even triple the amount of scripture we have available to us now? Plus, get the original content for this stuff we have now so instead of reading an abridgment, we could read it word for word, day by day, spiritual experience by spiritual experience. Super cool!
The Lord sets out a list of people who do not qualify for the revealing of these great revelations.
- Contend against the word of the Lord. The result is they are accursed.
- Deny the things contained in scripture. The result is being cursed.
It is interesting to note that not only will people not be given more revelation, BUT they will be accursed. Cross reference 3 Nephi 29:1-9. This scripture clarifies what entails “contending against the word of the Lord”. It is pretty forward and bold concerning certain actions of contending against God. Cross reference Mormon 8:17. If there are faults, they are the faults of man, not God. But if you blame God where man is responsible, be careful. Also
Denying and Receiving Knowledge
Also cross-reference 2 Nephi 27:14; 28:29-30. These scriptures elaborate on what it means to “deny”. Pretty much summarized it says that people will say we have enough (meaning the Bible) and don’t need anymore. Maybe even people who receive the Bible and Book of Mormon but having studied them, think they know enough or all that they need to know. I don’t know. I think it is safe to say that denying is more inclusive than just non-believers.
Cross reference Alma 12:10-11. I really really like this scripture. What it says is that if you harden your heart, you receive a lesser portion of the word. Whereas, if you don’t harden your heart, you receive a greater portion of the word, little by little, line upon line, precept upon precept. If you continue to not harden your heart, you continue to grow in knowledge until you have the mysteries of God unfolded unto you. Whereas if you harden your heart, you lose not. It isn’t a neutral state of not gaining. You actually digress until you become a savage, not knowing God at all, and being completely in Satan’s grasp.
Cross reference D&C 93:36 (sorry there are just so many good references here). This concept that Alma’s scripture brings to light would actually make a wonderful discussion topic. The D&C scripture says that the Glory of God is intelligence, or light and truth. So intelligence = truth+light. Light I take to mean having the spirit with you or the spiritual side of things. Truth, according to D&C 93:24 is a knowledge of things as they are, were and are to come. You can gain temporal intelligence through studying the concepts of man coupled with the spirit. You can learn spiritual truth from studying the scriptures coupled with the spirit or light. Interesting to see that in order to learn at all, you have to have some sort of spirit or light about you. I would like to talk more about what exactly intelligence means in the context of that scripture. that would take a huge detour and detract from my current discussion. But I wrote it down so I can remember it.
What is Intelligence?
Let’s look at this equation again. Intelligence = truth+light. If you take away truth or light, you don’t have intelligence. If you take away both, you don’t have intelligence. Using this equation we can see why Lamanites and the Jaredites devolved into a wicked people. They didn’t have knowledge of things as they were, are and will be, nor did they want that knowledge. Plus, that light, they also squandered it. If it was the light of Christ or Holy Ghost know, but to whatever extent they had light, it was shut out. When the channels of gaining knowledge are hedged up, and the ability to gain knowledge is lost Satan takes over. We learn in Mosiah 3:19 that the natural man is an enemy to God. And it is only through Christ, his atonement, and becoming as a child that we overcome this. If you don’t have this truth, the natural man wins. It’s easy to be a natural man, it’s hard to become a saint, it’s hard to be a child. Salvation never was easy. It’s running up a down escalator. If you don’t do anything, you reach the bottom and it takes a lot more energy to reach the top than if you have constantly been pressing forward to the top.
Those who press forward in the gospel are not only spiritually more capable but also physically more capable. Those who do not embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ are left to their own strength and are subject to the Devil’s sifting.
Being Visited With Manifestations of the Spirit
Him that believes these things (scriptures, gospel etc..) the Lord will visit him with manifestations of his spirit. I feel like these manifestations of his spirit can take many forms. For one, maybe it comes as a prompting to do something for another. Perhaps their mind is sparked to write something down as they are studying the scriptures. There is a myriad of ways we are visited by the spirit. But they all have the same effect. That is, persuade men to do good. Anything that persuadeth men to do good and to love God, and to serve him, is of God. Cross reference D&C 5:16. The manifestations of the spirit lead us to be baptized by water and by fire. To endure to the end. Cross reference 2 Nephi 32:5. If you will enter the way of Christ, the Holy Ghost will show you all things that you should do.
Look at Moses 6:63. All things temporal or spiritual denote there is a God. He leads men to do good. If you want to be a force for good and to bring much righteousness in this life, Jesus Christ is the one you want leading you. If you won’t believe his words, you won’t believe in his Father either. This made me think of miracles.
Miracles do not build faith, they confirm it. If you had not faith and a miracle happened, you would not believe any more than you had previous to it. But if you had faith before the miracle, your faith would be confirmed and grow stronger.
I like the second half of Verse 14 in chapter 4. It is an invitation to come and see how great the things are that are laid up for you. These would be available if you believe. I feel like God is eager and willing to reveal all knowledge to all people if they desire and have the faith to get it. But at the same time, God won’t reveal everything in one showing. Little by little he will. He knows what is best for you. It is like God saying, knowing he is the most powerful being in the universe, “Come, let me show you my wonders. Believe in me, trust in me. I will show you that there is more to this life than you could have imagined and there is a more exalted way to live”. It seems really neat. I want that knowledge, I want to know the mysteries of God.
Cross reference D&C 121:26-29. God will give you the knowledge that has not been revealed since the foundation of the world through the power of the Holy Ghost. This goes to show that the Holy Ghost really is the ultimate teacher. I think we take for granted sometimes the Holy Ghost. We forget that we have a right to his constant companionship. We forget who he is. We have the opportunity to have a member of the godhead with us at all times! I’d like to study more on him so I can better understand his role in my life and in the lives of those around me.