Photo Title: Words of Mormon by Normandy Poulter and the BYU Vi...
Likes: 0  Not Sure: 0  Dislikes: 0 Ranking: (0.00) by jsmith
Best Ranked: (Guest) jsmith
News Posts: (37)
Member Since: (Jun 2013)
Newest Post: (Guest) jsmith
News Posts: (37)
Member Since: (Jun 2013)
Original Post: (Guest) jsmith
News Posts: (37)
Member Since: (Jun 2013)
Last Submission: 1 month, 6 days ago
First Submission: 1 month, 6 days ago
Total Contributors (posts): 1
Total Public Comments: 0
Photos Uploaded (1) Views (27)

Save To Favorite Share This News Upload Your Own Photos of the News / Event View All Photos

Sort By:
A correct reading of Jacob Chapter 2, the Simplicity of a Moral unchanging God and the Error of Men
Posted by: jsmith
Religion
Apr 09,2021 @ 02:29 pm Ranking (0)
Accurate (0)   Almost (0)   Not Accurate (0) Citizen of:PROVO, UT
Local News: ID  
ORIGINAL

Added On Apr 09, 2021 @ 02:29 PM

Joseph Smith said, “I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book” (History of the Church, 4:461).


Italicized heading of Jacob, Chapter 2, as of 1981:
"Jacob denounces the love of riches, pride, and unchastity—Men may seek riches to help their fellow men—Jacob condemns the unauthorized practice of plural marriage—The Lord delights in the chastity of women. About 544–421 B.C."

Italicized heading of Jacob, Chapter 2, as of 2016:
"Jacob denounces the love of riches, pride, and unchastity—Men may seek riches to help their fellowmen—The Lord commands that no man among the Nephites may have more than one wife—The Lord delights in the chastity of women. About 544–421 B.C." In 1981, the reader would deduce that, in some circumstance, "plural marriage" may be "authorized", while in 2016 the matter is much more veiled and it's unclear what the actual point is, with Nephites being commanded to have only one wife.

Why this prevarication in the most correct of any book on earth? The answer is, simply, that these headings are not part of the original Book of Mormon text, but are additions placed by men, which are changed from time to time.

In almost all cases, these editorial chapter headings are useful for understanding the actual Book of Mormon, but they can also be a subtle form of propaganda. Such is the case, regarding Jacob's condemnation of the Nephite whoredoms, where a particular verse has been wrested to support the narrative of God commanding polygamy in the early modern church.

Just as chapter headings are not part of the original Book of Mormon, neither are the footnotes. Both can be used to misdirect the reader's understanding of what scripture is actually telling us.


Condemnation of Whoredoms in the Book of Mormon

In Jacob 2:22-35, Jacob gives a strong talk to the Nephites against the emergence of whoredoms among them.
23: "...For behold, thus saith the Lord: This people begin to wax in iniquity; they understand not the scriptures, for they seek to excuse themselves in committing whoredoms, because of the things which were written concerning David, and Solomon his son."

24: "Behold, David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord." So, the men had begun to commit whoredoms and were validating it by a licentious reading of the Old Testament.
25: "Wherefore, thus saith the Lord, I have led this people forth out of the land of Jerusalem, by the power of mine arm, that I might raise up unto me a righteous branch from the fruit of the loins of Joseph."

26: "Wherefore, I the Lord God will not suffer that this people shall do like unto them of old."

27: "Wherefore, my brethren, hear me, and hearken to the word of the Lord: For there shall not any man among you have save it be one wife; and concubines he shall have none;"

28: "For I, the Lord God, delight in the chastity of women. And whoredoms are an abomination before me; thus saith the Lord of Hosts."

29: "Wherefore, this people shall keep my commandments, saith the Lord of Hosts, or cursed be the land for their sakes." The Lord is really upset about all this because He had led the Nephites out of the mire of Jerusalem, in order to raise up a righteous group of people, and now they are screwing it all up by committing whoredoms. If the Nephites won't keep His commandments, the land will be cursed. Pretty serious.

Next comes verse 30, that has been wrested to support polygamy in the early modern church.
Jacob 2:30 "For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things." Did you see that, in verse 25, the Lord led the Nephites out of Jerusalem to raise up seed for Himself? And what are "these things" that the people will hearken to, if not commanded? Wait, scratch that. That's not how you're supposed to think.

From the church's narrative, aided by the italicized chapter heading and numerous footnote references from other texts, which aim to legitimize the history of polygamy in the early modern church, this verse is supposed to mean something like this:
For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people to engage in polygamy; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things written here about not engaging in polygamy. I propose to you that there is no possible way that anyone could come to such a disjointed interpretation by actually reading the Book of Mormon, itself, sans chapter headings and footnotes.

Remember, this is the most true and correct of all books, and contains God's word, which is plain and precious and easy to the understanding of all men.

How could there be, amid a barrage of condemnations toward what amounts to polygamy, an escape hatch that magically permits some men to have more than one wife?

As you will see, the Book of Mormon actually presents a perfectly complete and congruous picture, on its own, while the subterfuge of polygamy has been injected from without.


The Wresting of Jacob 2:30

Jacob 2:30 has two parts which each refer to different matters:

First part:
"For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people;" Second part:
"otherwise they shall hearken unto these things."
Exploration of the First Part of Jacob 2:30

In the first part of Jacob 2:30, the Lord states that when He wants to raise up righteous people, He will command them.

Five verses earlier, Jacob 2:25 explained how the Lord commanded the Nephites:
25: "Wherefore, thus saith the Lord, I have led this people forth out of the land of Jerusalem, by the power of mine arm, that I might raise up unto me a righteous branch from the fruit of the loins of Joseph." Notably, 1 Nephi 7:1-2 shows exactly when and how this was done.
1: "And now I would that ye might know, that after my father, Lehi, had made an end of prophesying concerning his seed, it came to pass that the Lord spake unto him again, saying that it was not meet for him, Lehi, that he should take his family into the wilderness alone; but that his sons should take daughters to wife, that they might raise up seed unto the Lord in the land of promise."

2: "And it came to pass that the Lord commanded him that I, Nephi, and my brethren, should again return unto the land of Jerusalem, and bring down Ishmael and his family into the wilderness." Again, reviewing first part of verse 30:
"For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people;" You can see that those 1 Nephi 7:1-2 verses absolutely relate to Jacob 2:25, and they all answer the first part of Jacob 2:30.

I don't think it's a mere oversight that there are no footnotes connecting Jacob 2:25 and 1 Nephi 7:1-2, and, especially, that no footnotes tie any of those verses back to Jacob 2:30. Such connections would undermine the narrative of polygamy having been commanded by the Lord in the early modern church.

Tellingly, In 1 Nephi 7:1, there is a footnote on the word "seed" that points to this verse:
Psalms 127:3 "Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward." ...While in Jacob 2:30, there is also a footnote on the word "seed" which points here:
D&C 132:61 "And again, as pertaining to the law of the priesthood—if any man espouse a virgin, and desire to espouse another, and the first give her consent, and if he espouse the second, and they are virgins, and have vowed to no other man, then is he justified; he cannot commit adultery for they are given unto him; for he cannot commit adultery with that that belongeth unto him and to no one else." Hello, Polygamy!

Certainly, the word "seed" means the same thing in 1 Nephi 7:1 as it does in Jacob 2:30, since these verses all tie together, even if their footnotes don't.

And if there's any confusion about whether or not the Lord commands polygamy when he wants to raise up seed, see what he reminded the Nephites of in Jacob's talk:
Jacob 2:34 "And now behold, my brethren, ye know that these commandments were given to our father, Lehi; wherefore, ye have known them before; and ye have come unto great condemnation; for ye have done these things which ye ought not to have done. No multiple wives. It's not the Lord's way. Lehi was given this commandment, commensurate with his and Ishmael's family being led to the promised land for the purpose of raising righteous seed.


There is absolutely no way that Jacob 2:30 can be honestly said to legitimize polygamy. Even if the Lord did instruct Joseph Smith and others to engage in it, the Book of Mormon certainly does not support it.

Now, onto the second half of Jacob 2:30. It gets even clearer.


Exploration of the Second Part of Jacob 2:30

Consider the second half of verse 30 (bold):
Jacob 2:30 "For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things." So, if the Lord's people are not commanded, they will hearken unto some "things".

The word "things" is a reference to, well... things. Where is the word "thing" used elsewhere in Jacob's talk, that would give some definition?

Here are all the verses in Jacob 2:22-35 which contain the word "thing" or "things":
Jacob 2:23 "But the word of God burdens me because of your grosser crimes. For behold, thus saith the Lord: This people begin to wax in iniquity; they understand not the scriptures, for they seek to excuse themselves in committing whoredoms, because of the things which were written concerning David, and Solomon his son."

Jacob 2:24 "Behold, David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines, which thing was abominable before me, saith the Lord."

Jacob 2:34 "And now behold, my brethren, ye know that these commandments were given to our father, Lehi; wherefore, ye have known them before; and ye have come unto great condemnation; for ye have done these things which ye ought not to have done." And, lastly, verse 30:
Jacob 2:30 "For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things." Do you see?


Conclusion

The real meaning of Jacob 2:30 is this:
"For if I will, saith the Lord of Hosts, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people by leading them out of the mire and instructing them anew on having only one wife and no concubines; otherwise they shall hearken unto these things written about David and his son Solomon and suppose themselves justified in committing whoredoms." Or, more simply:
"When I, the Lord, want a righteous people, I will lead them out of trouble and instruct them in my ways; otherwise, their carnal tendencies will only lead them deeper into error." A more accurate Italicized heading for Jacob 2 could read:
"Jacob denounces the love of riches, pride, and unchastity—Men may seek riches to help their fellowmen—Whoredoms are resolutely condemned—The Lord delights in the chastity of women. About 544–421 B.C." This brings up the really big question: "Why has the Book of Mormon been made to look like it supports polygamy, when it doesn't?"

I believe the bible warns us of the human condition:
Jeremiah 17:9 "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"

Romans 3:10 "As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:" God and man are naturally at odds with one another. God gives commandments and men are inclined to break them. Sometimes, men even try to weasel around the meanings of commandments to grant themselves the desires of their unknowably wicked hearts. Did I say "sometimes"? I should say "often".

Our hearts are desperately wicked, and we are inclined to do evil, even when supposing we are doing good.
Proverbs 16:25 "There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." This is the human condition and why we need to acquiesce to God's ways, and not our own - which are certain to lead to death.


Final Thoughts

It seems to me, with the advent of polygamy in the early modern church, the authority of men had to be elevated and scriptural truth had to be devalued, in order to keep things glued together. I believe there are numerous examples of this today, if one is willing to look.

There are some intriguing aspects of church polygamy that are not widely known.

Among the early converts to the church were members of a polygamous Christian sect in Maine led by a man named Jacob Cochran. These Cochranites practiced "spiritual wifery", which sanctioned multiple wives for each of its men. Many Cochranites converted to Mormonism and Brigham Young married a women from the group. When they came into the church, they were not leaving polygamy behind.

At one point in 1835, amid rumors that the church leaders were practicing polygamy, a formal denial was made in the original Section 101 of the D&C, which read:
"Inasmuch as this church of Christ has been reproached with the crime of fornication, and polygamy: we declare that we believe, that one man should have one wife; and one woman, but one husband, except in case of death, when either is at liberty to marry again." Forty-one years later, in 1876, that section was removed and Section 132 was inserted, which codified polygamy. Note that that came thirty two years after Joseph Smith's death.

Some say Joseph was always against polygamy, but was unsuccessful in routing it from the church. I believe he was a progenitor of it, but the formal notion came after early extramarital involvements, apparently starting with Fanny Algers, a teenage girl living with Joseph and Emma. In one of the recent church essays on polygamy, Fanny is cited as Joseph's first plural wife. However, when Emma discovered them in the barn together, she blew up and sent Fanny packing. Fanny went to a neighboring state, married a man, had ten kids with him, and was never again a Mormon. Emma was unaware of many of Joseph's later wives and she suffered much, per Jacob's warning of the wounds women endure as a result of whoredoms.

It seems to me that Joseph died due to intrigues surrounding polygamy. With the advent of William Law's Nauvoo Expositor and Joseph's subsequent reaction to it, in which he ordered men to destroy Law's printing press, he gave the government a reason to detain him. For that, he was called to Carthage Jail, where he was killed by an armed mob, shooting two men, himself, before dying.

The church has made it very difficult for members to parse these matters, as Joseph Smith, The Prophet of the Restoration, is presented as an all-or-nothing proposition. This is a false dilemma that seems, to me, a mechanism for maintaining belief in many Mormon tenets which the refutation of polygamy could deeply jeopardize.

What seems clear to me is that the Book of Mormon was God's work, and was completed to God's satisfaction through Joseph Smith. What came after, involving things like polygamy and Freemasonry, seems suspect. I don't know that a prophet can't take a left turn. I believe God grants each man his agency.

Unfortunately, for the welfare of greater Christendom, this conflation with polygamy has deterred many from reading the Book of Mormon. This seems tragic, as we are now inundated with the dark works of secret combinations, which the Book of Mormon explicitly warns about and explains. Most people remain oblivious to the existence of secret combinations and their motivations, patterns, and behaviors, and are therefore unable to understand what is transpiring around them. The Book of Mormon would teach the whole world plain and precious things, if they would be persuaded to read it.

Adapted from:
https://www.ldsfreedomforum.com/viewtopic.php?p=690627#p690627

What did you think of the news post above submitted by (jsmith)?:

Accurate (+) Almost (0) Inaccurate (-) Write Your OWN VERSION on the SAME TOPIC
(0) (0) (0)   Report this news posting as Abuse | Flag as Inappropriate
Tags:

polygamy, lds, mormon, mormonism, polygamists, joseph, smith, brigham, young, moral, god

I Like it!      Not Sure      Dislike
1500 Chars Left
Submit
NEW POST