This is the fifth and final part of my response to a recent article by G.azelem.
G.azelem continues his article.
Had Joseph and Sidney gone forth in power during the second watch to put all enemies under their feet, that would have included the entire world and nearly all of the Saints. Right now we are to, “Be subject to the powers that be, until he reigns whose right it is to reign, and subdues all enemies under his feet.” (D&C 58:22)
Curiously, it is in that same revelation that Sidney Rigdon is assigned to consecrate and dedicate the land of Zion for the temple. Why was Sidney given this role and not Joseph?
Does it matter who consecrates the land of Zion and dedicates it for the temple? I don’t believe that it does. Rather it matters that this was done by the proper priesthood authority.
Because this is to be accomplished in the third watch, and it is in the third watch that Sidney will act as Christ/Elias as one who has been identified as an arm of the Lord.
Orson Hyde dedicated Palestine for the return of the Jews, does this mean he will lead the gathering himself as Christ/Elias? I don’t think so. Same goes for this idea with Sidney Rigdon.
D&C 49:6: “[Christ] will reign till he descends on the earth to put all enemies under his feet, which time is nigh at hand—”
This is clearly another condescension of God. Referring back to the 1828 Webster dictionary, the word condescension is defined as: “Voluntary descent from rank.”
Christ will reign in the heavens until he descends on the earth, and will not reign again until all enemies are subdued.
Yes, Christ will return from the heavens to reign as King of Kings and Lord of Lords upon the earth. Prior to the millennium, He will separate the sheep from the goats. He will destroy the wicked from off the face of the earth, cleanse it, and so on.
There’s no indication that His return will be another condescension however. He will return in glory in the clouds of heaven.
With that said, will Jesus Christ literally come down to the earth and subdue the enemies?
If the scriptures are true, then yes He will literally come down and do this. There are many scriptures which show this to be the case. I will share just one, D&C 133:46-51.
46 And it shall be said: Who is this that cometh down from God in heaven with dyed garments; yea, from the regions which are not known, clothed in his glorious apparel, traveling in the greatness of his strength?
47 And he shall say: I am he who spake in righteousness, mighty to save.
48 And the Lord shall be red in his apparel, and his garments like him that treadeth in the wine-vat.
49 And so great shall be the glory of his presence that the sun shall hide his face in shame, and the moon shall withhold its light, and the stars shall be hurled from their places.
50 And his voice shall be heard: I have trodden the wine-press alone, and have brought judgment upon all people; and none were with me;
51 And I have trampled them in my fury, and I did tread upon them in mine anger, and their blood have I sprinkled upon my garments, and stained all my raiment; for this was the day of vengeance which was in my heart.
Is not that the duty of the weak things of the earth? What if Christ condescends by virtue of the servants he has deemed as his two arms?
Section 36: “I will lay my hand upon you by the hand of my servant.” (verse 2)
This is a curious doctrine which informs us of Christ’s ability to infuse himself within a mortal to perform the functions of the priesthood. According to Section 84, Esais received the priesthood under the literal hand of God, but with Section 36 in mind it’s clear to see that the hand of God is through the indwelling of Christ in the mortal who performs the ordinance.
This verse does not suggest that Christ is infusing Himself within a mortal to perform the functions of the priesthood. Christ does not indwell in mortals.
What is stopping Christ from indwelling inside tabernacles of flesh during other missions and ordinances?
First of all, Christ is a resurrected being with a body of flesh and bones and not a spirit (Luke 24:39).
The Book of Mormon teaches us that after the resurrection the spirit and body are never to be separated again.
45 Now, behold, I have spoken unto you concerning the death of the mortal body, and also concerning the resurrection of the mortal body. I say unto you that this mortal body is raised to an immortal body, that is from death, even from the first death unto life, that they can die no more; their spirits uniting with their bodies, never to be divided; thus the whole becoming spiritual and immortal, that they can no more see corruption. (Alma 11:45)
Furthermore if Christ can indwell Himself inside anyone He chooses, then what is the purpose of the Holy Ghost? Is it not the Holy Ghost who can dwell inside of us and not Christ?
Joseph clarified the nature and roles of the members of the Godhead. His clarification was later canonized in D&C 130.
“…the idea that the Father and the Son dwell in a man’s heart is an old sectarian notion, and is false.” (vs 3)
22 The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us.
I do not hesitate to suggest that Christ did in fact dwell in Joseph and shared in his experiences as he acted out the sins we are all responsible for. Due to God’s inability to commit sin, he would need a mortal vessel to understand what it is like to commit iniquity.
To suggest that Christ acted out sins in order to understand what it is like to commit iniquity is blasphemy.
Christ is the one sinless Man to walk upon the earth. He is the lamb without blemish. He cannot sin and does not need to experience what it is like to commit sin.
He suffered for every sin. He felt every pain. He felt every temptation. He took our sins upon Himself, when He was slain for the sins of the world in the meridian of time. To suggest that that He still needed to experience what it was like to commit iniquity 1800 years later, is to suggest that the atonement was not fully complete when Christ was slain. This is again blasphemy.
Now I’m not suggesting that G.azelem is trying to mock God by stating this. I know he got this false doctrine from Watcher, who I also believe is not trying to intentionally mock God.
Never-the-less this idea does mock God. It suggests that Christ did not fully understand us sinners at the time of His atoning sacrifice, when He declared “it is finished.”
This is perfect example of the trap one can fall into once one takes a wrong turn and doesn’t course correct.
G.azelem does not provide a single scripture to show that Christ still needed to experience what it was like to commit iniquity following His infinite and eternal atonement. He doesn’t provide any scriptures because there aren’t any. This idea flies in the face of the word of God in the scriptures.
When Revelation 11 speaks of the latter-day stage for the two prophets in America, John identifies the location as, “where also our Lord was crucified.” (verse 8)
Actually Revelation 11 says nothing about two latter-day prophets in America. Revelation 11:8 states:
8 And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.
If you are of the belief that the two prophets will in fact emerge out of America and not the old world it becomes clear that John was hinting that the Lord was not only crucified in in ancient Jerusalem but again in the Jerusalem of the United States—the land surrounding that which has been designated as Zion.
Of course Joseph was not crucified, the favoured practice of the Jews, but killed by the weapons of choice which define the culture of gentile-America. To be gunned down is the contemporary equivalent of being crucified.
Even though I have already shown that Christ does not indwell in people and therefore was not slain again inside of Joseph Smith, we see that Revelation 11:8 doesn’t support G.azelem’s conclusions either.
It says that these two latter-day prophets will be slain and lie in the streets of the “great city… where also our Lord was crucified.”
Joseph Smith was slain in Carthage, Illinois, which has never been a great city. It is a town of little consequence. The only thing it is known for are Joseph and Hyrum’s deaths.
Now perhaps if Revelation 11:8 stated that these prophets would lie in the streets of the “great land which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt where also our Lord was slain”, G.azelem might have a leg to stand on, but when it says the “great city… where also our Lord was crucified” then it is clear that Jerusalem in the old world is being referred to.
Due to the justice of God, Joseph was cast into hell as prophesied by God unto him in Section 122: “The very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee.” (verse 7) However, “He shall see of the travail of his soul.” (Isaiah 53:11)
G.azelem doesn’t give us a single reason for why Joseph deserved to be cast into hell. Section 122 does not anywhere state that Joseph would be cast into hell. Here’s what the Lord says to Joseph in that section:
1 The ends of the earth shall inquire after thy name, and fools shall have thee in derision, and hell shall rage against thee;
2 While the pure in heart, and the wise, and the noble, and the virtuous, shall seek counsel, and authority, and blessings constantly from under thy hand.
3 And thy people shall never be turned against thee by the testimony of traitors.
4 And although their influence shall cast thee into trouble, and into bars and walls, thou shalt be had in honor; and but for a small moment and thy voice shall be more terrible in the midst of thine enemies than the fierce lion, because of thy righteousness; and thy God shall stand by thee forever and ever.
5 If thou art called to pass through tribulation; if thou art in perils among false brethren; if thou art in perils among robbers; if thou art in perils by land or by sea;
6 If thou art accused with all manner of false accusations; if thine enemies fall upon thee; if they tear thee from the society of thy father and mother and brethren and sisters; and if with a drawn sword thine enemies tear thee from the bosom of thy wife, and of thine offspring, and thine elder son, although but six years of age, shall cling to thy garments, and shall say, My father, my father, why can’t you stay with us? O, my father, what are the men going to do with you? and if then he shall be thrust from thee by the sword, and thou be dragged to prison, and thine enemies prowl around thee like wolves for the blood of the lamb;
7 And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.
8 The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he?
9 Therefore, hold on thy way, and the priesthood shall remain with thee; for their bounds are set, they cannot pass. Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever.
These words of the Lord are given as a comfort to Joseph Smith in his afflictions. The Lord promises to always be with him no matter what men or the devil do to him. There is absolutely zero indication that Joseph would be cast into hell.
G.azelem’s conformation bias continues to get the better of him.
After God chastens the Davidic servant by the rod of men we are told that God’s mercy does not depart from him. (2nd Samuel 7:15)
Joseph Smith will return to the earth to fulfill his mission. He is the angel of Revelation 7 who has been given the seal of the living God over the twelve tribes of Israel. This angel is described as ascending. Why would Joseph ascend and not descend from heaven? Because he is not in heaven and will be ascending from the deep. (D&C 122:7)
The “deep” in D&C 122:7 refers to the possibility of Joseph being killed by his enemies casting him into the sea, not that Joseph was going to be cast into hell.
The angel in Revelation 7 is ascending from the east and not from hell. This angel is also identified as Elias who will restore all things in D&C 77:9. This is not Joseph as Joseph and Elias who will restore all things are listed as separate and distinct individuals in D&C 27.
Sidney, on the other hand, will not be ascending in light of the prophecy of Section 49: “He descends on the earth to put all enemies under his feet.” (verse 6)
In the third watch, God will condescend in the person of Sidney Rigdon. After having condescended in mercy as Jesus Christ, in justice through Joseph Smith, he will once again condescend through his second arm in bringing judgment.
D&C 49:6 is speaking of Jesus Christ and says nothing about Sidney Rigdon. This idea of Christ condescending in the person of Sidney Ridgon is unscriptural. This is more unfounded and unsupportable speculation.
Section 124 prophesies that the atonement offering of Sidney Rigdon would result in him lifting up his voice on the mountains.
Isaiah 18:3 speaks of an ensign being lifted on the mountains, which is a clear reference to Sidney.
No, actually this is not a clear reference to Sidney. In D&C 124 Sidney was given several conditional promises, contingent upon him remaining with the saints in Nauvoo. Sidney did not do this.
The Lord had also said something similar about Martin Harris raising his voice upon the mountains in D&C 19.
29 And thou (Martin) shalt declare glad tidings, yea, publish it upon the mountains, and upon every high place, and among every people that thou shalt be permitted to see.
So maybe Martin Harris will be Christ and not Sidney…
This whole idea just doesn’t make any sense at all. One can’t just cherry pick scriptures and force them to mean what one wants them to.
He is the one to raise the ensign, which is elaborated on even further in Section 113. The Root of Jesse is, “a descendant of Jesse, as well as of Joseph, unto whom rightly belongs the priesthood, and the keys of the kingdom, for an ensign, and for the gathering of my people in the last days.” (verse 6)
Because we know Sidney raises the ensign we know that the Root of Jesse is not Joseph.
The root of Jesse holds the priesthood and keys of the kingdom by right, which is why I infer the passage, “until he reigns whose right it is to reign, and subdues all enemies under his feet,” (D&C 58:22) to the man Sidney Rigdon, due to the undeniable evidence that he is the one to raise the ensign.
This is all speculation and ultimately a false conclusion. We do not know that Sidney raises the ensign and therefore we do not know that he is the Root of Jesse. Sidney failed to live up to his calling in the end.
So the next question becomes: Why does Sidney have a right to the keys of kingdom and not Joseph?
This is because of their true identities as individuals who have lived through a previous mortal probation.
Joseph did not receive the keys of the kingdom individually until he received them in 1836. Before that point he held them jointly with Frederick G. Williams by virtue of Sidney Rigdon within the Presidency of the High Priesthood.
It is only once Sidney Rigdon joins the church that the Saints are informed they have the kingdom! (D&C 35:27) Before stating that, two verses earlier it’s said, “Israel shall be saved in mine own due time; and by the keys which I have given shall they be led.” (verse 25)
This puzzled me, because Joseph did not receive the keys to gather Israel until Section 110, but in Section 35 those keys have apparently already been given. But that is because Sidney already held those keys!
Would he have gotten them any other way than Joseph did? I don’t think so.
Here we go again with the “previous mortal probation” false doctrine. The scriptures do not anywhere state that Sidney Rigdon already held the keys of the gathering of Israel prior to joining the church, or that he held any keys prior to joining the church for that matter. G.azelem is pulling this out of thin air. The keys to the gathering of Israel were given in the Kirtland temple in 1836 (D&C 110) and not before. Those keys were given to Joseph and Oliver and not Sidney.
The final necessary keys of the kingdom are dispensed by Moses and John the Baptist/Elijah (Elias). Although Christ ordained his apostles unto the Melchizedek priesthood, they were visited by Moses and Elias on the mount of transfiguration for reasons not made clear in the New Testament accounts.
In Section 110, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery are visited by the same two angelic prophets, only this time we learn for what purpose. They are given the keys to gather Israel by Moses while John the Baptist commits the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham.
Actually D&C 110 says that Moses, Elias, and Elijah visited Joseph and Oliver and bestowed keys upon them. John the Baptist is not mentioned and Elias and Elijah are shown to be separate individuals.
In the past I have assumed that the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham was a downgrade from the fulness of the gospel, but have rethought this completely. The gospel of Abraham is integral to the fulness of the gospel as it pertains to the gathering of Israel under the full authority of the keys of the kingdom.
If my assumption is correct that Moses and John the Baptist were endowing Joseph and Oliver with the same gifts they gave to Peter, James, and John, there is no reason to think the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham represents a lesser dispensation.
The Book of Abraham can be viewed in light of Section 110 to provide the clues necessary in understanding the true meaning behind the elusive gospel of Abraham. The patriarch is told, “Thou shalt be a blessing unto thy seed after thee, that in their hands they shall bear this ministry and Priesthood unto all nations; And I will bless them through thy name; for as many as receive this Gospel shall be called after thy name, and shall be accounted thy seed, and shall rise up and bless thee, as their father.” (2:9-10)
G.azelem is correct that the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham is not a downgrade. He clearly doesn’t understand what the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham really means, but by acknowledging that it is not a downgrade he is one step ahead of the other third watch bloggers in this regard.
John the Baptist is Elijah who is to turn the hearts of the children to the fathers, so of course it is John the Baptist who commits the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham!
John the Baptist is not Elijah. The Elias referred to in D&C 110 is Elias who will restore all things, who is identified as a separate individual as John the Baptist in JST Matthew 17:14.
But the purpose of it is to bear that ministry and priesthood unto all nations which can only be done through the keys of gathering Israel.
Remember that Section 110 carefully explains that the keys of gathering Israel were given specifically to Joseph and Oliver and the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham is only stated to have relevance to them respectively.
Returning back to Abraham 2: “This right shall continue in thee, and in thy seed after thee […] shall all the families of the earth be blessed, even with the blessings of the Gospel, which are the blessings of salvation, even of life eternal.” (verse 11)
G.azelem is correct that the seed of Abraham is to bear the ministry and priesthood to all nations. This has reference to members of the house of Israel spreading the gospel and priesthood throughout the earth. The tribe of Ephraim specifically has been given this commission, which has been underway since the 1830s.
The Abrahamic gospel has the power to bless the nations with the blessings of salvation of life eternal! This is no preparatory gospel. The gospel of Abraham is synonymous with the fulness of the gospel. Those that received the everlasting covenant of the fulness previous to April 3rd 1836 (Section 110) did so because Sidney Rigdon already held those keys and had been given the Abrahamic commission to bear the ministry, “unto all nations.” (Abraham 2:10)
“As many as shall come before my servants Sidney Rigdon and Joseph Smith, Jun., embracing this calling and commandment, shall be ordained and set forth to preach the everlasting gospel among the nations.” (D&C 36:5)
Until Sidney entered the picture, the church did not have the commission to preach the gospel unto the nations.
Joseph and Oliver were told that their gifts to translate would, “bring to light this ministry.” (D&C 6:28)
What ministry was God referring to? The existing ministry of Sidney Rigdon which both Joseph and Oliver were not yet aware of!
Before Joseph and Oliver received the priesthood by the hand of Elijah—as promised by Moroni (D&C 2)—to organize the Church of Christ, Rigdon had already been sent forth, “even as John, to prepare the way before me, and before Elijah which should come, and thou knewest it not. Thou didst baptize by water unto repentance, but they received not the Holy Ghost.” (D&C 35:4-5) It is assumed that the reason Rigdon did not bestow the Holy Ghost is because he did not have the priesthood authority but I will show this to be false. The following verse reads: “But now I give unto thee a commandment, that thou shalt baptize by water, and they shall receive the Holy Ghost by the laying on of the hands.” (verse 6)
The Lord does not tell Sidney to first be ordained by the authority held by Joseph and Oliver. He is called immediately to begin the laying on of hands for the Holy Ghost. Edward Partridge was thereafter ordained an elder by Sidney Rigdon, even though Sidney himself was never ordained an elder as far as I am aware.
Actually Sidney Rigdon was ordained an elder by the laying on of hands of other Elders in the church, so G.azelem’s entire theory of him previously having the keys to the gathering of Israel falls apart.
Then of course there’s the little detail that the Lord never states that Sidney previously held the keys to the gathering of Israel, or that he ever personally held them at any point for that matter.
So how did Sidney have the keys of the kingdom?
Answer: Sidney held the keys by virtue of being one of Joseph’s councilors in the first presidency, who collectively held the keys of the kingdom with the president of the church, Joseph Smith. Clearly Joseph bestowed those keys upon Sidney and Frederick G. Williams when they were set apart as his councilors. There is zero indication that Sidney held these keys previously.
The only sensible explanation is to propose that Sidney Rigdon is John the Beloved, and that he received the keys from Jesus Christ, Moses, and John the Baptist.
The explanation that Sidney Rigdon is John the Beloved is not sensible at all.
First of all Joseph Smith taught that translated beings do not again experience the torments of life and death and therefore are not born into a body again. They are reserved for special missions and their bodies will be changed in a manner which is similar to death before they are able to enter into the same rest as the saints who have died rather than being translated (TPJS 170-171, 191)
Before I explain this I want to turn to JST John 1.
When the Jews ask John the Baptist who he is, he does not deny that he is Elijah, but confesses, “I am not the Christ,” which puzzles them. They ask, “How then art thou Elias [Elijah]?”
The Jews believed Elijah was to be the promised Messiah!
Actually the Jews appear to have believed that the prophecy of the coming of Elijah (Elias) had three fulfillments by three different individuals, the Christ, Elias who would restore all things, and that prophet (JST John 1:26)
This is why John says, “He it is of whom I bear record. He is that prophet, even Elias.”
John the Baptist refers to Christ as Elias because this is how the Jews will understand. As a true prophet, he is speaking to the people according to their understanding. (2nd Nephi 31:3) This is key in solving the Elias controversy.
Christ says, “Who is Elias? Behold, this is Elias, whom I send to prepare the way before me.” (JST Matt 17:13)
Just as John the Baptist identified Christ as Elijah, Christ identifies all who prepare the way before him as Elijah. But neither are literally Elijah. Elias—the Greek translation of Elijah—is a title promulgated for feeble minds to one day comprehend that which they currently don’t.
John the Baptist did not identify Christ as (Elias) Elijah. He identified Christ as one of the three fulfillments of the (Elias) Elijah prophecy.
John also confessed and denied not that he was Elias, because as Christ would later clarify “Elias” is a title for one who He sends to “prepare the way before [Him].”
Elias will always mean Elijah, but due to the Jews limited understanding—and our own—Elias has become slang for a preparatory servant and for the Christ of all three watches. Jesus was Elias of the first watch; Joseph Smith was Elias of the second; and Sidney Rigdon will be the Elias of the third watch.
This is an interesting theory. The problem is that nowhere in scripture, or anywhere else, are Joseph and Sidney identified as Elias. G.azelem is yet again pulling things out of thin air and declaring them as unquestionable facts without a shred of evidence to support them.
Section 77 describes the angel ascending from hell as Elias in verse 9 and then refers to John the Beloved as Elias as well in verse 14.
No, D&C 77:9 does not describe an angel ascending from hell. John saw an angel ascending from the east, as in the Middle East or Palestine.
The Lord and his two arms are the restorer of all things. They have all been dubbed as Elias, even though none of them are Elijah as Elias implies.
As I mentioned above, neither Joseph nor Sidney were ever dubbed as Elias.
Section 77: “Q. What are we to understand by the little book which was eaten by John, as mentioned in the 10th chapter of Revelation? A. We are to understand that it was a mission, and an ordinance, for him to gather the tribes of Israel; behold, this is Elias, who, as it is written, must come and restore all things.” (verse 14)
D&C 77:14 does appear to identify John the Beloved as Elias, but upon closer inspection, and upon weighing all of the available evidence, I have concluded that John is not Elias who will restore all things, but that the book he ate is a mission or ordinance for him in the last days, given to him by the angel (Elias who will restore all things).
The little book eaten by John was an ordinance that tasted sweet as honey but was bitter in the belly. This is not referring to his role as the scapegoat in both the first and second watch, but as his role as Christ in the third watch. Christ drank from the bitter cup (3rdNephi 11:11) and when God goes forth as a mighty man (Isaiah 42:13) the man in which Christ indwells will retain the memory of the bitterness Christ suffered.
Once John realizes the bitterness of the ordinance and mission given unto him, it is related to his calling to once again prophesy before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.(Rev 10:11)
The problem here, among other things, is that the idea of Christ indwelling in someone is a false doctrine.
It’s also worth pointing out that Ezekiel had a similar experience, were he was giving a roll or scroll (book) to eat which initially was sweet as honey to him. But then once he is told the suffering he would have to endure to fulfill this mission, he went and did it in bitterness.
So was he also Christ in a previous life then? That would be tough as Christ hadn’t been born yet, and certainly hadn’t drank of the bitter cup yet.
Although many are prophesied to preach unto every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, Sidney Rigdon was given a direct commission unto the kings of the earth in Section 124:107 alongside the marred servant (and William Law who will be another great man of the last kingdom).
G.azelem is forgetting two men. Robert B. Thompson and John C. Bennett were also called to help with this proclamation.
He’s also forgetting that the Lord told Joseph to make this proclamation to the kings of the earth immediately, not four generations later.
Well, I guess we’ll have to wait and see if Sidney Rigdon, who left Nauvoo against the Lord’s command; John C. Bennett ,who was an adulterer who preyed on naïve women and wanted to murder the Lord’s prophet; and William Law who betrayed Joseph, started his own church, and later denounced the restored gospel as a fraud, will all come back and make this proclamation together with Robert Thompson acting as scribe.
If these guys will all be given a free pass for their sins, then I guess we’ll all be saved in the kingdom of heaven in the end, after perhaps being beaten by a few stripes. We might as well eat, drink, and be merry.
In Sidney’s patriarchal blessing he is told, “Thou shalt receive an ordination not many days hence which shall surpass all human understanding.” Clearly, Joseph Smith Sen. was filled with the spirit of prophecy! This ordination must have been the mysterious ordinance mentioned in Section 77:14. Christ had to have ordained Sidney—most likely through the instrumentality of Joseph—to be the Christ of the third watch.
I guess in G.azelem’s eyes Sidney’s patriarchal blessing can only mean that he will be the Christ of the third watch, but the problem is yet again, that there just isn’t any evidence to support this idea.
If Sidney Rigdon is in fact John the Beloved who restores all things and holds the keys of the kingdom why is Joseph Smith necessary at all? The Rod of Jesse does not have nearly as many qualifications as the Root of Jesse. (D&C 113) The difference between the Rod and the Root is that the Rod is of Ephraim.
Joseph’s mixed lineage of Judah and Ephraim is what makes him entirely necessary.
It is possible that Joseph is the Rod of Jesse. Even though we don’t have any indication that Joseph was of Judah and Ephraim, this may very well be a mystery that will yet be revealed.
My personal belief is that Joseph is the Rod of Jesse from Isaiah 11 and D&C 113, but I could be wrong.
The apostles asked Jesus after his resurrection, “Wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6) Jesus responded that it was not for them to know the time in which he would do so.
What the apostles understood was that they were descendants of Judah, Levi, and Benjamin—the tribes of the southern kingdom of Judah—and that the keys of the kingdom, which they held, would need to be shared with someone of Ephraim—of the northern kingdom of Israel—according to the words of the prophets.
“For there shall be a day, that the watchmen upon the Mount Ephraim shall cry, Arise ye, and let us go up to Zion unto the Lord our God. […] They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them. […] For I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my first born.” (Jeremiah 31:6-9)
Jacob prophesied that all the tribes of Israel would bow down to the fruit of the loins of Joseph from generation to generation. (JST Genesis 48:10) The apostles knew that a second act needed to take place in which the keys of the kingdom were to be given unto Ephraim.
G.azelem is correct that Ephraim will do the gathering.
Ephraim will be the one to gather Israel as the 144,000 high priests. However Ephraim had to be gathered, or at least identified, first. This was the purpose of Joseph receiving the keys to the gathering of Israel and there reason those keys were passed to the church. This is why most LDS are identified as Ephraim. Ephraim was to be gathered first, through the keys of the gathering of Israel given to Joseph Smith and then the church. Then when the time is right, the righteous remnant of Ephraim will gather the rest of Israel home to Zion, the New Jerusalem.
Joseph Smith, a descendant of Ephraim, received these keys, and this is why he holds the seal of the living God over the twelve tribes of Israel, because they are to bow down unto him.
Jacob tells his son Joseph, “For thou shalt be a light unto my people, to deliver them in the days of their captivity, from bondage; and to bring salvation unto them, when they are altogether bowed down under sin.” (JST Genesis 48:11)
G.azelem is misunderstanding things yet again. The blessing pronounced upon Joseph had to do with his posterity not with him personally. The same goes for all of the blessings given to the sons of Jacob and Ephraim and Manasseh.
This is the role of Joseph Smith, who brings the righteous branch of Israel, “out of darkness unto light—yea, out of hidden darkness and out of captivity unto freedom.” (2nd Nephi 3:5)
Joseph Smith is Joseph of Egypt.
No, this is wrong. Joseph Smith is not Joseph in Egypt. Joseph Smith is one of his descendants of the fruit of his loins. (2 Nephi 3:6-7)
Understanding Joseph to be the servant of the vineyard in Jacob 5 indicates that his ministry began long before the first watch, when the wild olive trees (Gentiles) were first grafted into the olive tree of Israel. Joseph Smith did this as Joseph of Egypt by marrying a Gentile woman.
Joseph in Egypt did not marry a gentile woman and he is not Joseph Smith.
Joseph brings salvation unto men, and began this by first bringing to light an existing ministry, even that of Sidney Rigdon. Sidney is therefore synonymous with salvation. I will also show he represents the kingdom of God and is the embodiment of the new and everlasting covenant.
“I have sent mine everlasting covenant into the world, to be a light to the world, and to be a standard for my people, and for the Gentiles to seek to it, and to be a messenger before my face to prepare the way before me.” (D&C 45:9)
I’ve incorrectly interpreted that passage to refer to Joseph (https://themarvelouswork.com/2017/01/10/the-prophet-pt-1-the-new-and-everlasting-covenant/) but Section 35 makes it clear that it was Sidney who was sent forth, “to prepare the way before me.” (verse 4)
Between Isaiah 11:1 and 41:6 we have all the keywords of Section 45 as it pertains to the Root of Jesse. He is a covenant, a light, a standard, and when he raises the ensign the Gentiles will seek after it.
Although Sidney was sent as John, an Elias-preparer, to prepare the way for Joseph, the Christ/Elias-restorer, in the third watch Joseph is the Elias-preparer to prepare the way for Sidney the Christ/Elias-restorer.
G.azelem’s speculation is truly running wild here. He has shared many scriptures, but not a single one identifies Sidney Rigdon as John the Beloved, Elias-preparer, or Christ/Elias-restorer.
2nd Nephi 2:3: “In the fulness of time he cometh to bring salvation unto men.”
With all of this in mind, in closing let’s turn to Revelation 12 via the Joseph Smith Translation.
This chapter has been endlessly contested and usually raises more questions than provides answers. But with everything I’ve come to realize and now presented in this post, I find the chapter to read smoother than ever before.
Through the lens of the KJV Bible it makes the most sense to interpret the woman travailing in birth as Israel and the child she brings forth as Jesus Christ. But the JST says the woman is the church of God. (verse 7) How could the church of God exist and bring forth Christ when it is Christ who should be bringing forth the church? Therefore, the man-child born of the church is not Jesus. In fact, the text never explicitly purports this. The man-child is said to one day, “rule all nations with a rod of iron,” but is, “caught up unto God and his throne.” (verse 3) The rod of iron, according to 1 Nephi 11:25, is the word of God, and the word of God is Jesus in the flesh. (JST John 1:16)
If you believe the child to be Jesus, verse 3 of JST Rev 12 would then read: And she brought forth Jesus Christ who was to rule all nations with Jesus Christ.
So who could the man-child be?
Answer: JST Revelation 12:7 states that the man-child is the “kingdom of our God and His Christ.” Having said that, the man who is to be the king of the kingdom of God (Israel) is also implied. This is of course Elias who will restore all things or the Davidic Servant (both being the same person).
It has to be John the Beloved, a member of the church of God who was caught up to heaven and did not experience death until the second watch. Jesus remarked cryptically that John would not taste of death until he saw the Son of Man coming in his kingdom. (Mathew 16:28)
Many people believe that Elias will be John the Beloved and that he is therefore the man-child, based on D&C 77:14. I use to believe that myself. I no longer think he is, but I could certainly be wrong.
John did see the Son of Man [as Joseph Smith] coming in his [John’s/Sidney’s] kingdom before he tasted of death! Keep in mind that the man-child is also referred to as the kingdom of God. (verse 8)
JST Revelation 12:1-5 relates to the first watch. Thereafter, the war in heaven occurs.
Section 50 purports that false spirits have gone forth in the earth, (verse 2) but it is only until Section 52 that we learn that Satan himself is abroad in the land! (verse 14)
This is because Satan was cast down to the earth during the Morley Farm conference which ended the day before Section 52 was given. It was during this conference that Joseph reported, “The man of sin was revealed, and the authority of the melechisedec priesthood was manifested and I conferred, the high priesthood for the first time, upon several of the elders.”
When Satan is cast down to the earth in JST Rev 12:8, the following verse says, “Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God and the power of his Christ.”
The blessings of salvation that accompany the kingdom of God return to the earth on the same day that Satan is cast down! Also keep in mind that the woman is the “church of God” and not the Church of Christ. The Church of God emerged on the earth with the restoration of the Melchizedek priesthood and it is only this church which offers sanctification.
The interpretation of Satan being cast out of heaven during the Morley Farm conference just doesn’t work. Other scriptures clearly show that Satan was cast out of heaven long before that.
Evil spirits who followed Satan were possessing people during New Testament times and the Savior even stated that He had beheld “Satan as lightening fall from heaven.” (Luke 10:18) How could they do this be if they were not already cast out of heaven and on the earth?
How could Satan appear unto Moses in Moses 1:12-22 if he was still up in heaven? Or how could he appear to Cain or even the Savior?
The Lord actually told Moses how Satan had become Satan in Moses 4.
1 And I, the Lord God, spake unto Moses, saying: That Satan, whom thou hast commanded in the name of mine Only Begotten, is the same which was from the beginning, and he came before me, saying—Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor.
2 But, behold, my Beloved Son, which was my Beloved and Chosen from the beginning, said unto me—Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever.
3 Wherefore, because that Satan rebelled against me, and sought to destroy the agency of man, which I, the Lord God, had given him, and also, that I should give unto him mine own power; by the power of mine Only Begotten, I caused that he should be cast down;
4 And he became Satan, yea, even the devil, the father of all lies, to deceive and to blind men, and to lead them captive at his will, even as many as would not hearken unto my voice.
We see a similar thing in Abraham 3.
26 And they who keep their first estate shall be added upon; and they who keep not their first estate shall not have glory in the same kingdom with those who keep their first estate; and they who keep their second estate shall have glory added upon their heads for ever and ever.
27 And the Lord said: Whom shall I send? And one answered like unto the Son of Man: Here am I, send me. And another answered and said: Here am I, send me. And the Lord said: I will send the first.
28 And the second was angry, and kept not his first estate; and, at that day, many followed after him.
This is speaking of the council in heaven before the world was created. Satan became angry and many followed after him.
Between Moses 1 and Abraham 3 we can see what happened. Therefore Revelation 12 is merely giving us the story one more time so it is clear that the dragon is Satan and that this war between Satan and the Saints of God has been going on since before the world was. We are told that Satan and his followers were cast to earth and did not receive bodies, as they did not keep their first estate. Here they have continued their war against the Saints of God.
This is precisely what Joseph Smith taught when he said, “The contention in heaven was–Jesus said there would be certain souls that would not be saved; and the devil said he could save them all, and laid his plans before the grand council, who gave their vote in favor of Jesus Christ. So the devil rose up in rebellion against God, and was cast down, with all who put up their heads for him.” (TPJS, 357)
As for the Morley farm conference. The Melchizedek priesthood was restored before that. It was restored in 1829. There were already Elders before the church was organized. Elder is an office of the Melchizedek priesthood. The Joseph Smith quote about Morley farm doesn’t say what G.azelem thinks it does.
Joseph said, “The man of sin was revealed, and the authority of the melechisedec priesthood was manifested and I conferred, the high priesthood for the first time, upon several of the elders.”
What Joseph is saying is that Satan was detected by the authority of the Melchizedek priesthood and at this meeting several of the elders were ordained as High Priests, which was the first time this had happened in the church.
Joseph would later teach that it requires the priesthood to detect Satan. (TPJS, 204)
There is absolutely nothing to suggest that Satan was in heaven and was cast down during the Morley farm conference.
“When the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman [the Church of God] which [had] brought forth the man-child [in the first watch]. Therefore, to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might flee into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.” (13-14)
The Church of God was nourished for a time, and times, and half a time—or in other words, three and a half years—from the face of the serpent. Forty-two months after salvation came through the Melchizedek priesthood, the Saints broke the new and everlasting covenant. The fulness of the priesthood, in which the Church of God operates, was lost from the earth and Satan overcame the Saints.
This is the timeline put together by Watcher, but the problem is that the Melchizedek priesthood was on earth and with the church in 1829, so the three and a half years would have ended in 1832 not 1834 as Watcher claims, and G.azelem echoes here.
Even if we were to believe that the fulness of the gospel was rejected by the saints in 1834, how does one explain the spiritual outpouring at the Kirtland temple dedication? Clearly the fulness of the gospel and priesthood were still on earth at that time.
Satan would not overcome the Saints until later.
“They received not the love of truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.” (2 Thess 2:10-11)
“ And now if this generation do harden their hearts against my word, behold I will deliver them up unto Satan.” (Book of Commandments 4:6)
Before the Second Coming, “there shall come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God shewing himself that he is God.” (JST 2 Thess 2:3-4)
Section 38 informs the church that the enemy is combined with the Saints and that a plan against them, “is had in secret chambers,” to bring to pass their destruction. (verse 13) Brigham Young was intimately involved with Masonry before uniting himself with the restored church. Did a secret combination involve Brigham working his way up the ranks of Mormonism until he took complete control?
Joseph Smith Sr. and Hyrum Smith were both masons as well. Brigham Young received his endowment from Joseph and not the other way around.
Brigham Young would administer the masonic endowment unto the church membership in the corrupted Nauvoo temple.
The endowment was first administered by Joseph Smith in the red brick store.
During this ceremony, Brigham would position himself in the role of God.
This is not correct. Brigham Young played the role of God the Father in the endowment ceremony according to an expose from the Nauvoo era, but he did not position himself as God.
Those initiated into the ceremony are told by Satan, “If they do not walk up to every covenant they make at these altars in this temple this day, they will be in my power!”
Actually we don’t know what exactly Satan said in the Nauvoo era endowment. The line G.azelem is quoting is from the modern endowment, which has undergone many changes from the original. We actually don’t know what the exact wording of the original endowment was.
It is also my understanding that it was once taught during the endowment that everything Satan says in the ritual is not to be trusted, as he is the father of all lies.
Furthermore, breaking one’s covenants with God, will absolutely put one in Satan’s power, so I don’t see what G.azelem has a problem with here.
There is also nothing in the endowment of which I am aware, which can in anyway be associated with secret combinations. The third watch bloggers like to take shots at the endowment, but I have yet to find a convincing argument from them as to why they believe the endowment is from Satan and a secret combination.
Regardless as to how sinister or oblivious Brigham was, the fact remains: God had delivered his people over to Satan.
If the Nauvoo endowment is supposed to be the evidence that God had turned the Saints over to Satan, I would expect an explanation as to what in particular was Satanic about the endowment and why God had Joseph Smith, and not Brigham Young, introduce this to the Saints. G.azelem doesn’t provide any explanation at all for his accusation.
Without the sanctifying power of Christ’s authority, no one will be able to keep the commandments; and thus all who have entered into the covenants made in secret chambers are under the power of Satan.
“When ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you.” (Ether 8:24)
Ether 8 is talking about actual secret combinations to get gain and commit murder, which are hidden from the world. Ether 8 is not talking about the LDS endowment.
Awakening to a sense of this awful situation is the first step in removing oneself from the false traditions of our fathers. The next step is to learn the true nature of God, and thus begin to exercise a true faith in Christ which will bring about the miracles and works of God that will usher in the fulness of times and the redemption of Zion.
G.azelem is correct that we need to wake up to our awful situation and repent. There is great wickedness in high places, which is kept hidden from the world. There are powers in secret places, who are in fact seeking to overthrow the liberty of all nations and bind us down into slavery.
This is currently being accomplished by destroying what little is left of the U.S. Constitution and by pushing Satanic ideas down the throats of Americans and the world at large through feminism, the LGBTQ movement, gun control, politically correctness, and much more. Satan’s tactic today is sometimes referred to as Social Communism.
Additionally, the church is in a state of apostasy and going along with these evils. Satan truly has the world veiled in darkness and grasps us with a chain. This is an awful situation indeed.