21: "A Faithful, a Just, and a Wise Steward" (Doctrine and Covenants 51–57)
Throwing an egg at your sibling may seem like an extreme reaction, but at one point or another, a heated argument may have caused you to do something you wouldn't normally do. Whether it was a friend or a relative, feelings were no doubt hurt in the process. But in Doctrine and Covenants 51–57, the Lord teaches us how important relationships are—how we should seek to help those around us rather than tear them down. As we study these chapters we'll find that if we can do this, the Lord promises us something special in return.
So growing up my siblings and I, we fought a lot—like epic fights. I mean, we still laugh about the time that my sister threw an egg at my other sister, and it exploded on her back. My siblings listening right now are laughing so hard because when you have five kids with ADHD, that's what you're going to get.
And my sweet, blessed mother, she came up with some very inventive punishments for fighting. Like we had to hold hands facing each other until we apologized. We had to sit in the same room with no food or fun until we worked it out. And I'm not even kidding with this one—she actually made us sing out our fights. So can you imagine your kids singing, "I hate you," because that's what we got.
But my dad had a slightly different approach rooted in truth with a slight splash of guilt. And he would say, "You kids need to get along because you're all you've got and one day you'll need to help each other out, and then throughout your life, so you better make it work out now."
Well, I was reminded of those words as I studied Doctrine and Covenants sections 51 through 57, because the Lord is basically saying the same thing to the Saints and to us, without the guilt. And He's saying, "You kids need to get along because you're all you've got. And one day you're going to need to help each other out and then many times throughout your lives and you'd better make it work, now help each other out."
I'm just gonna tell you right now, He was preparing them for Zion and there was nothing Zion-esk about my siblings in the 1970s. I'm just saying.
Welcome to the Sunday on Monday study group, a Desert Bookshelf Plus original brought to you by LDS Living where we take the "Come, Follow Me" lesson for the week and we really dig into the scriptures together. I'm your host, Tammy Uzelac Hall.
If you're new to our study group, we want to make sure that you know how to use this podcast so please follow the link in our description and it's going to explain how you can best use this podcast to enhance your "Come, Follow Me" study. Just like my friend Zandra Vrannes. Hey, lady! Zandra listens and she loves the podcast.
Now, another really awesome thing, my favorite thing about the study group is each week we're joined by two of my friends, so it's always a little bit different. And today is such a fun combo. I'm so excited. It's sort of like a little reunion of sorts. It's my friend Holly Rawlings, HB as I call her, and Tamu Smith Hi, ladies!
Now, I say reunion because last time we saw each other was 2019, in Atlanta, Georgia, right?
COVID has been the worst.
It's the pits, but I'll tell you what, memories of oOtober of 2019. Boy,we had some good times.
And I'm just gonna tell you right now, this is pretty dang hilarious, because we started out our podcast and Tamu needed a chair. So she's at Walmart right now buying a chair while we're recording this.
I wasn't expecting for you to bust me out like that.
I'm totally doing it. I don't even care. Cause we just had to start recording so we're like, "Just drive and we'll record." So she's walking around in Walmart.
Tamu, can you pick me up one of those things I see behind you?
A gallon of milk.
Give me a gallon of milk and that T-shirt that says, "bad hair, don't care." This might be my favorite moment ever. She got a chair.
A container of milk, a loaf of bread, and a stick of butter, I remember, momma! I remember!
And a camping chair. Alright, so as Tamu purchases her camping chair, we're just gonna start our little discussion here. And we're gonna hope for the best, friends. So enjoy this because this is doesn't get more real within this. Am I right?
Okay, well, if you want to find out more information about my friends and see pictures of them, you can get all this information in our show notes, which are at ldsliving.com/sundayonmonday. So go check it out.
Okay, so I want to know growing up, did you and your siblings fight? You guys have epic fights like I do?
I only have one sibling, but I think we could rival the amount of fighting that you and your five siblings did, Tam. Yeah, I think a pretty healthy dose of animosity, with a dash of jealousy.
Oh, that makes for some good fights. What about you, Tamu?
I am the oldest of 10 children that I grew up with, for the most part. I didn't really fight with them. I fought for them. But they had to listen to me. So my growing up situation was very different.
Well, and I thought of you when I was preparing this episode because have your siblings ever had to rely on you for help? And I was like, yeah, there you go.
So it's so interesting, because this episode is about helping each other out. And it's also about those who wouldn't help. So friends, grab your scriptures and let's dig into these sections.
Okay, let's see what Doctrine and Covenants section 51 has to do with getting along. So from what you guys read, why do we need to get along for this law? What's the law?
The law of consecration.
Yeah, in fact, that's the section title for section 51: "Law of consecration and stewardship." That's what this is all about. And this law is so needed you guys because here's what's happening at the time. The saints from Colesville, New York, they're arriving in Thompson, Ohio, in May of 1831. And they basically have nothing, and they really needed support and land and food and everything. So this law could not have come at a better time.
Now, Bishop Edward Partridge, he's responsible for arranging their settlement. And that's in verse one. And to help guide Bishop Partridge, the Lord gave the Prophet Joseph Smith, a revelation recorded in section 51 about how we're going to do this. So let's look in Section 51, and find out what the Lord designed for the Saints to help each other out with and how they're going to do it.
We're going to start in verse four. And there's a word that I want you to mark, highlight, underline all that fun stuff. And it's the word "inheritance." Isn't that incredible that the Lord would use the word inheritance to describe what we receive through the law of consecration, pointing out that we inherit it from God and not from man? That's an important word for us to mark because this law is God's law.
In fact, in verse 15, how much do I love that he says, "And thus I grant unto this people a," mark this, "a privilege of organizing themselves according to my laws." I've never considered it a privilege to live the laws of God. And here he's saying it is a privilege to live this law of consecration.
And there's three specific things about this inheritance or what we inherit in this law of consecration. And it's found in verse three. Let's go and read it. And it's kind of cool because we had our guest Ashlie, back when we studied section 42, Ashley kind of talked a little bit about this because section 42 was sort of our introduction to the law of consecration. And now here we're going to talk about it some more. And so I just kind of wanted to bring that up if this sounds familiar.
HB, will you read verse three? And as you do, I want us to mark what three things we get in this law of consecration or what's met in the law, go ahead.
3. Wherefore, let my servant Edward Partridge, and those whom he has chosen, in whom I am well pleased, appoint unto this people their portions, every man equal according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and needs.
Okay, circle the word, "equal." That does not mean identical. That's what we need to know first. So it's going to be every man equal, according to, and that's the according to. What is it? According to, what is he going to give us? What you notice?
I never noticed this before, but according to his or her circumstances and wants and needs. I certainly have never read wants.
Let's talk about that. What do those three things then tell us, or tell you, about the Lord or about God?
If it's important to you, it's important to him.
I tell my students this at BYU–Idaho, you can pray and get help with a grammar quiz. Because if it's important to you, it's important to them. It's important to your Heavenly Parents.
Just like now, if my kid wants to tell me some story about Star Wars, Trek, oids robots, then I'm gonna give it my full attention. Even though it's not important to me. I don't care about space and about movies about space. But if my child comes to me, which he did last week, and was telling some story about a superhero, and blah, blah, you know, then I really tried to get into it because I could tell it was really important to him. And the Lord's like that with us.
Well let me ask you this, if we lived this law right now, would either one of your lives be different? If you could have your circumstances, wants, and needs all met? Would anything change for you?
The life that I live growing up, if this was something that the Church were like, "Let's do this, and let's do it fairly," it's not anything that I will balk at. I would just be like, "Okay, I see that." But I think sometimes, the minute that that I felt like it was being used inappropriately, I would be in my feelings.
Yeah, you have to have a certain sense of propriety or spirituality to not look at the other person kind of like "Huh, you really need that?"
Oh, you've been wanting that a long time. Are you sure that's necessary? You know?
Yeah, I'd run the risk of being a judgy virgin with the lamps and the oil. Like, "Oh, it's time to get your oil."
Must be convenient, must be really nice to live your life.
"At least I have mine." I mean, I know in that parable, they don't share the oil, but like in that regard, like, "Oh, you didn't get to buy all your toilet paper? Well, I have a quite a bit but alright," you know? I'm a little bit worried that maybe I'd be Judgy Ben Judgertons.
All I remember being taught about this at the end of Primary and in Young Women's, even in college, like, "Oh, let's hope we don't have to live the law of consecration anytime soon. It's gonna be a nightmare."
And I have a feeling I may have missed the boat. I don't know why it was taught that way. And maybe that's neither here nor there. But it sounds pretty great. If you know, everyone were aware of my particular circumstances, and I had my wants and my needs met.
We have to read verse 19. Because this is an interesting verse to end of this section with when we're talking about the law of consecration. And that's the benefits that come from this.
So if we cannot be judgmental, as we should say, then look at verse 19. Tamu, will you read that for us?
And whoso is found a faithful, a just, and a wise steward shall enter into the joy of his Lord, and shall inherit eternal life.
Now, let's highlight the word "steward," so we know what that means. This is a person who takes care of the affairs or property of another. So all things on the earth belong to the Lord, we're his stewards. So whatever we get comes from him. So if we can be faithful, just, and wise stewards, then we get to enter into what Tamu said, she'd just be so happy. Enter into this joy.
Well, from the notes that I have. If we were to go back to verse nine.
And let every man deal honestly, and be alike among this people, and receive alike, that ye may be one, even as I have commanded you.
I mean, so the whole thing is, that for me was because as I was reading it, I was like, "Okay, this is the law of consecration." And of course, my relationship with it now has changed because I got some stuff. And now I'm having this internal battle. Like, if we were called to do it right now, how would my life change? And then I get to verse nine, and I was like, "Okay, Lord, you heard me.
Right there, highlight that where it says, "as you were commanded," because if you remember, the Saints were commanded back in Doctrine and Covenants, section 38, verse 27. That's where it says, if you're not one, you're not mine. And yes, we've talked about this. But how cool that God, he really does teach us line upon line precept upon precept. He can go back now and say, "Remember, I commanded you that." As opposed to, "Did I forget to say that? Did I forget to teach you to be one?"
As I'm reading this, I'm thinking, "How do you decide? How do you judge? How do you?" And then you hit verse 15. And then it says, "and thus I grant unto this people, a privilege of organizing themselves, according to my laws." You have a commandment, I'm not gonna keep telling you over and over. You need to know that this is a privilege that you have to organize yourself according to my law.
Perfect. That is awesome.
I was just thinking when Tammy was talking about this emphasis on us being one, I was just talking to another woman in my ward, who I haven't seen in person since last May. I don't particularly feel part of Relief Society. And I wasn't saying that, like, "Oh, poor me." I mean, I think it's 97% my own doing. But during this plague, as it were, I have always felt Relief Society like we are one. We are the sisters in Zion. And so I think this is going to be really good for me, for us to talk about this section. Because as soon as what makes us different comes to the forefront more than what binds us together, then I know I'm in trouble.
I appreciate both of you what you said because it's a beautiful ending to this chapter when we talk about being one and how important that is because it just goes back like my parents are right. You got to be one. You got to be one so you can help each other out. That's what this this whole law is about.
So in the next segment, we're going to see how the Lord prepared a pattern for being one and for having joy and callings for 28 elders to experience this oneness.
Segment 2 14:33
Do either of you sew or have you tried to sew?
I tried to.
I've dabbled in the sewing art since I took it in home ec, back in '83, from Mrs. Dara at Burr Junior High School.
What did you make?
Shout to Connie Dara. You know, my culminating project that year was a polo shirt. Apparently, I did some growing during the time between when we cut the pattern and I finished sewing it.
It was a midriff?
I had little buttons that were ice cream cones, and they were busting off that shirt. But boy, I wore it loud and I wore it proud. It was like, pastel like sherbert colors, stripes. Oh, I thought I looked so good.
I bet you did. What about you, Tamu? What have you made?
I made a Halloween costume for Isaiah. He wanted to be a cowboy. And I made these chaps to put around his pants. And I actually have never taken a sewing class.
Oh my word.
I bought a sewing machine because I wanted to make a quilt. I bought a lot of fabric. Still have the fabric. Still have the sewing machine. I have no quilt. But I did make his Halloween costume.
Let's do a bee. We should have a quilting bee.
Let's do. Ya'll can show me everything.
He had this vest on he had on the chaps but he could only wear it once because I didn't know how to sew the back or make a button or anything like that.
Yeah, it was single use and a single-use vest. Because even in the vest was uneven. I just did what I thought it would look like. And it took me forever. It was just a mess. And I was just like, "God, please, help me." And he did. So there's that.
Yeah. Okay, well, when you're sewing, we just learned Tamu didn't use a pattern. But when you think about sewing, you need a pattern, right?
I mean, you have to be sure that you get the result. But when your circumstances change, you know, in my case, the pattern didn't work. But I bet the Lord's patterns always work.
The Lord's patterns do. In fact, that is the section title for section 52 is called "A Pattern in All Things." And then there's a little dash and write, "Teach What Apostles and Prophets Have Written."
Okay, so we have a pattern in section 52 that the Lord is going to show us. I'm going to give you a little background for this section. From June 3 to June 6, the elders of the church gathered for a conference. And on the last day of this conference, the Lord gave Joseph Smith a revelation that's recorded in section 52 of the Doctrine and Covenants. Now, in this revelation, the Lord indicated that the next conference should be in Missouri. And he promised that he would make known the location of the Saints' land of inheritance. Like there's been a lot of talk about this, but we just don't know where Zion is yet. So he's kind of giving a little like, "It's going to come."
But in this section, what you're going to see is if you turn the page. Look on page, well, in my scriptures it's 97, but starting with verse 22, just scan your eyes, what do you see in all those verses?
A lot of pioneer names.
A lot of names. Yep, you're gonna see so many names. In fact, 20 names are in this section. And the Lord is appointing certain elders to travel in pairs to go to Missouri. And they're instructed on how they're going to travel and preach the gospel in this section. But before they go, "Okay, so these men are going to go to Missouri and get things ready." Before they go, the Lord is going to teach them a pattern that's going to help them to avoid deception, and to recognize the true followers of Jesus Christ to experience joy that he's been talking about. So let's go into section 52. We're just going to look at this pattern. And the pattern is found in verses 14 through 19.
Before we get to that, if you go back to verse nine, "and let them journey from thence, preaching the word by the way, saying none other things than that which the prophets and apostles have written. And that which is taught them by the Comforter through the prayer of faith."
The pattern is we're going to teach the things that the prophets and the apostles have written, and that which was taught them by the Comforter. So again, it goes back to I'm going to give you the law and allow you to govern yourself.
I never noticed that either, Tamu, that last part. And I'm thinking, "Oh, these men and women had so many spiritual experiences that were given to them that they could then go and teach also."
Well, and also like, there are parts of the Doctrine and Covenants that I've read, and I'm just like, "Oh my gosh, I didn't even know that within there." I love that in between space of feeling confident and uncomfortable.
When you grow up in a space where you're uncomfortable most of the time, it becomes comfortable for you. So if I'm uncomfortable with something that someone says, if it's a truth, it's that good, uncomfortable because I know that God is working with my spirit. And that the Comforter is going to do its job. And whatever it is that I'm uncomfortable with will manifest itself and I'll be able to speak to that discomfort. So as I'm reading this, and it just makes me think there's so many times where we do and or say things under the influence of the Spirit that is uncomfortable for our brothers and sisters. But then there's someone in the room that rushes to their aid, because it's uncomfortable, and they try to make it comfortable. And that takes away from the Spirit. For me it does because I think that there is truth in the discomfort, we find our truth in that discomfort when we allow the Spirit to work it out. Does that make sense?
Oh, my gosh, well, Tamu, as you're speaking about this. I love this. We didn't even plan this. This is so awesome. Because now let's go to verse 14. In verse 14, The Lord says, "I will give unto you a pattern in all things that you may not be deceived." Okay. This is so cool because the pattern involves the word "contrite" several times and highlight and mark that word contrite because guess what the word contrite means? It's what you just talked about. It means to be broken, it means to break or bruise, literally worn or bruised. Being uncomfortable is the only way to be contrite. And through that brokenness, when we are broken, it's when we become repentant. And that's when we become one with Jesus Christ. And that is the pattern in everyone, almost every one of these verses, you have to be contrite in order to pray and feel the spirit and speak his language.
Oh, I just had an experience last Wednesday, where what Tamu just said about being uncomfortable and then in that finding the truth. And the Lord followed his pattern in all things for me on that day. And I just can't believe it.
So on Wednesday, I was having a really difficult day. And I started to think, really some incorrect thoughts about myself. And I started feeling more and more down and more and more worthless and more and more depressed. And the thought came to me, like, I'd be better off dead because there must be something wrong with me. And I'm sure the Lord doesn't think any better of me.
And I was with a friend and I told her, "I'm worried about myself, I am not feeling good. Like I keep thinking that I would be better off if I were gone." She's a great friend because she didn't freak out about it. And I wasn't saying it to be dramatic. I was being really honest, about how low I was feeling.
And she said, "I just have a feeling the bishop could really help you." And I said, "I'm not calling the bishop. I might feel like I want to die, but I've got enough pride I am not gonna call him." And she said, "No, I really think you should. I really feel strongly about it." And I said, "I can't, I feel too stupid. And I'm a grown woman who has a beautiful family. And I live in a nice neighborhood like, I don't have any business feeling this way in the first place."
She kept saying, "I really think that you should call the bishop." I said, "You want to call the bishop, go ahead." And so she did. Well, he didn't answer and then we're walking to Pottery Barn. And he called back and she answered it, and just her talking to him, I felt so embarrassed and so sad. But I just kept having that feeling like God doesn't, He doesn't even like me. There must be something really wrong with me. And my thinking clearly was off. And then she said, "Look, I gotta go to the bathroom here in Pottery Barn so you have to take the phone." So I was crying, but I was behind a mask so I wasn't really causing a scene, but I was so embarrassed to talk to the bishop. I was mortified and just mortified to be in a public place and being emotional.
And so I close my eyes and I was listening to him and he, you know, his voice is so kind he's just such a nice guy and he really did care and I opened my eyes and he was sitting on the couch Pottery Barn.
When I looked out, I saw the Lord for the first time in my life. I knew for the first time in my life, that my Heavenly Father loves me. And that all that thinking that I have been doing before, I had been deceived. Like it says in verse 14, I've been deceived by the adversary all these years. I mean, I'm 51. And I had bought into his lies all this time. And it didn't matter anymore. Because I saw the face of God in my bishop that day. And I felt the love of my Heavenly Mother, my Heavenly Father, and the Savior.
And I said [to the bishop], "How are you here? Are you magic?" It turns out, he was not supposed to be downtown in Salt Lake. And he had a meeting that morning had canceled and he didn't know why. So he was downtown for another reason. But then when we called he was right beside Pottery Barn. And so when I opened my eyes, there he was.
Holly, I can't even believe that story. Like it might be the best story I've ever heard. Holy cow, that is amazing that that happened. Wow.Right there, right there in Pottery Barn.
You're verse 17, then, and the end of that pattern. "And again, he that trembleth under my power shall be made strong. Bring forth fruits of praise and wisdom, according to the revelations and truths, which I have given you."
He gave you revelations and truths that day.
And it answered a question I'd had since I was a tiny child, which was, "Does God love me?" And listen, I have felt the love for other people on my mission, when working with the youth, with teaching and Relief Society, like I could never deny that. But I never felt like he really loved and accepted me until last Wednesday when he was on the couch at Pottery Barn.
And, you know, HB? Listen, I've known you for so long. And I know that you have done everything medically possible and therapeutically possible to take care of your mental health, and this experience, even though it was super powerful, it didn't heal you of all your problems. But what I love is that it it did answer a question you've had your entire life, which is, "Does God love you?" Your story shows you that he'll meet you wherever you are.
And that's what's true. And boy, have I been uncomfortable with that concept for 40 years. I mean, can you imagine the Lord, Heavenly Father Jesus, all of them Heavenly Mother, they're busy. But they came to Pottery Barn. For me.
That's a beautiful story. Oh, I love it.
You know, I think that the other beauty in that and the discomfort in that is you went to war on Wednesday. Was it Wednesday? That was a war. bBecause they're busy, but so is Satan. I think that to be able to recognize that, I mean, it creates this level of discomfort again, you know, but also to lean into that comfort. Because you also had a choice to one, open your eyes, and also to see the Savior's love to see God's love in that moment. Or you could have been upset that your friend told the bishop that ya'll were at Pottery Barn and he showed up. I mean, I know people that would have been upset about that. But you made that choice.
Wow, thanks, Tamu, I didn't ever think of that. But when you just said that, that was a metaphor. I literally opened my eyes and I saw truth where I had never seen that before. And my Bishop is a nice, good, he's the finest of men. He's just a good guy. He and his wife are just good people. But I can tell you, it was not the bishop I saw when I opened my eyes.
Well, you just have to look at verse 16 too. Tamu, will you read 16, please?
He that speaketh, whose spirit is contrite, whose language is meek and edifieth, the same is of God if he obey mine ordinances.
Tammy, if you don't stop walking us through this blessing right now. Look, you're like "Okay, and your bishop was this and this is where you were." Stop, girl! You're preaching.
And I was not suppose to be on this podcast .Tammy called me two seconds before now.
I got to say this. Look, this is what we say where I've come from, "Won't he do it?" And some people say, "Won't she do it?" But won't he do it?
Won't he do it.
And you're supposed to say, "Yes, he will."
Yes he will. Well I what I love about verse 16 is the word "edifieth." You think it means to build, but how cool, the other part of that word is "to improve the mind." That is what happened to you that day. He improved your mind.
And my mind was broken. And my mind was broken. Yeah, and we can say, "Will they do it?" Yes, they will.
Wow, that was so good.
I can't believe—
I got chills right now.
Holly just passed out.
She's slaid in the spirit right now.
There it is.
Yeah, I'm the queen, I'm the queen where Abish had to run around.
Yeah, she is.
Wo w. You guys. Wow, that's powerful.
Well we just have to end then, we'll just end this whole segment with verse 19. You know, we have to actually end with verse 33. Because this is really the ending to your story. I just want to read it.
Yea, verily I say, let all these take their journey unto one place, in their several courses, and one man shall not build upon another’s foundation, neither journey in another’s track.
That's your track. That is your foundation, you just had your foundation built.
I was always supposed to have this journey. It has been painful. And it has made me wonder like, I know God loves everybody else, but does he really love me? My difficult journey was so that I could have this experience and know with a surety that my Heavenly Parents and my Savior love me so much, they'll sit on the couch with me at Pottery Barn.
I think that the blessing in this, and I'm just gonna say it for you right now. Because Satan is not going to stop. He knows the Lord's pattern to, just like we're learning it. He knows this. And so remind yourself of this moment, at this moment that you were here, you got to testify of this thing, because it was something that our Heavenly Father wanted you to remember. He wants it written on your heart so that you can go back to this because you're going to have more dark moments and he's going to trick you into not believing what happened, happened.
Well, Tamu, I just love what you said about remembering it and coming back to it. Because that advice that you just gave HB is exactly what the person section 53 needed. So we're just going to end right here.
I'm not even kidding,
If we could go back in time, I'd have you go back to June 8 ,1831. To give this man that piece of advice. So we'll talk about him in the next segment.
Segment 3 33:22
So Tamu, your grandma has a saying that you've shared with me before. And I just think it's perfectly fitting for section 53.
My grandmother, after she had her stroke, she would always say, "Remember to remember." That's really the only thing that she could say. And that is something that sticks to me. Remember to remember, and remember what you felt.
That is so perfect. I'm writing that right now next to section 53. Because that advice would have definitely helped the person that this revelation was given to. Look in the section heading. Who was section 53 given to?
Algernon Sidney Gilbert.
Perfect, yes, Algernon Sidney Gilbert. Okay, now, this is a really interesting little side note about this. So remember back in section 52, where we saw all those names of the men who were called on missions. Algernon wasn't. He is a convert. He's 41 years old and he did not find his name listed among the men given the assignment in section 52. So after the conference, he walks right up to Joseph Smith. And he asks him, "Well, what does the Lord want me to do?" So Joseph Smith asks, and the Lord gives section 53 to Algernon.
I know how Algernon felt, I know how Sidney felt, you know, always the bridesmaid, never the bride. I mean, there were a couple of times I wanted to march up to a sealer, you know, the 25th roommate I had who got married. I wanted to go up and say, "What about me?" Yeah, I get that.
Well, and I feel like the Lord is saying, "Listen, I'm going to tell you what you need to do. And I want you to remember what I say. Remember to remember your conversion. Remember to remember what I the Lord am calling you to do, me, the Lord."
Because I love verse one, you guys, the Lord is saying, "Hey, I've heard your prayers, the very prayers, you prayed about having your calling an election, which in this section means calling in the church, and nothing beyond that. Just so we're very clear about that verse. But the Lord's like, "I've heard you, I know exactly what I'm going to do with you and where I need you. And I want you to remember that."
Now this calling he gets is in verse two. So, HB, read Sidney Gilbert's calling.
Behold, I, the Lord, who was crucified for the sins of the world, give unto you a commandment that you shall forsake the world.
That's it. That's what he wants him to do forsake the world. How would that be if that was your calling? Imagine if the bishop called you in and said, "We'd like to call you to the title of forsaken the world.
I mean, that would really cut into my ward climate control calling, but—
Holly thinks she's in charge as a thermostat in her sacrament.
I have been called, yes. I mean, we can't have it too hot in there, Saints. Let's, conserve the Lord's resources and take it down to a nice, crisp, 69.
To forsake the world. I mean, I'm imagining Sydney or Algernon. I'm guessing he likes to go by Sydney because Lord calls him that there in verse one. I imagine that he had all kinds of big plans, he thought he was going to get called with the rest of the guys, and all the adventures they'd have. And then the Lord says, "I've heard your prayers. I know how you felt, I know you're disappointed. But let me tell you, I just want you to forsake the world."
Because he was one of the original converts of the missionaries during the Lamanite mission. And so he felt the Spirit, he had these experiences. And going back to you, Tamu, remember to remember. The Lord's like, "Just forsake the world."
Tamu, read verse seven, what he says.
And again, I would that ye should learn that he only is saved who endureth unto the end. Even so. Amen.
That's the section title for section 53. It's "Sidney Gilbert Forsake the World, Endure to the End"
Honestly, I think that Sidney has the most freedom of all of the missionaries right here. Because you know, if you just leave it at forsake the world, because as I have some self-appointed callings also, and I consider myself a visiting tweeter. So how do I forsake the world and also be on Twitter? Lord, give me Thy word.
But if you go to verse three, it says, and this is where I see freedom, like I think that some people would be like, well, that's not anything. The Lord just says "forsake the world," we should all be forsaking the world. But he goes back and to say, "take upon you my ordination, even that of an elder, to preach faith and repentance and remission of sins, according to my word, and the reception of the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands."
And so to me, I'm just like, he doesn't have any place that he has to go. He has every place that he can go.
Oh, I like that.
Does that makes sense?
Yes, I really like that.
We get so caught up in the thing that, well, this person has this calling. And this person has that calling. So the bishop doesn't have anything for me to do so I do nothing. And for me, I'm like, "No, that's freedom actually. I don't have a calling so I can do everything." So I think my bishop gives me a calling so I am restricted.
And you know what, Tamu, I just thought of all these sweet missionaries. The boy next door was called to Alberta, Canada, but he's in Boston. He's in Rhode Island right now, actually. And he is just like back in section 51, in verse 17, he says, "Wherefore, let them act upon this land as if for years." And this boy next door is acting as if he would have always been called to Boston for this time. And Tammy and I have an old roommate and her son Andrew is acting as if he were called to Tucson even though he was called to Bolivia. He has thrown his whole heart into being right there. And daughter of a man I taught on my mission, who joined the Church. She's supposed to be in Spain, and she's in Houston singing songs and putting stuff on Facebook and everybody in Houston is going to get baptized. She has that freedom that you just talked about.
I love that.
And I just feel like sometimes we wait for the calling. My inheritance comes straight from God. And I don't care if the bishop gives me a calling or not. If I see something that needs to be done, then I'm going to do it, if I have within me the power to do it. And so I don't get caught up in the title of it. And I know that for some people that's problematic. Because I'm doing the thing that I can do, and someone says, "You're not doing it right." And I'm like, "It wasn't even a thing that you thought needed to be done. So what are you talking about?"
And I always say, "You know this is a volunteer organization, right?"
Oh, I am quick to remind people of that. I'm like, "Oh, you know, just take it out of my pay."
Yeah. But you know, the part that isn't a volunteer is that we have covenanted with the Lord to be nice to each other and be kind, right? That's the calling. And we have the freedom to do that everywhere.
We have the freedom to do it. And I think so many people wait to be told because our organization, our church organization is so organized in some aspects. We wait to be told what needs to be done instead of saying, "I see this and I need it needs to be done so I'm going to do it until somebody comes along and can do a better job."
Well it's when you help someone out and you're not their minister. And you're not about to say, O"h, I probably shouldn't do that. Let me call your minister and have them do it for you."
You are verse three, you are feeling the spirit. You know what you need to do, the Holy Ghost is guiding you, and you're just doing it. And so I think I love that take on verse three, Tamu, that is awesome. You know, it's interesting, verse four says, "and also to be an agent," highlight that word agent right there. He was going to go into Missouri and help buy real estate.
I thought I saw Sidney Gilbert on a back of a park bench, you know? As an agent.
He may have signed it.
But yeah, that word agent means like a real estate agent in Missouri. But you have to hear the rest of his story. So I'm just going to tell you. This is the sad story of Algernon Sidney Gilbert, you won't believe this. Okay, so this is according to Church history. You can find this in the "History of the Church," Volume Two, page 118. And here's how it goes. Sidney Gilbert lacked the confidence in his ability to preach, and he didn't really want to preach out loud to anybody. And according to some reports, he said, quote, "I would rather die than go forth to preach the gospel to the Gentiles." Ironically, he later contracted cholera and died on June 29, 1834. Heber C. Kimball recorded in his journal that quote, "The Lord took him at his word," unquote. But I do I appreciate what B.H. Roberts wrote about Sidney Gilbert. So this is the best part. B.H. Roberts said, "The remarks in the body of the history and this expression from Elder Kimball's journal are liable to create a misunderstanding concerning brother Algernon Sidney Gilbert, then whom the Lord has had a few more devoted servants in this dispensation." So this might be our our little moment right here because I think it's just so interesting that he refused to speak. And then he died three years later, poor Sidney Gilbert, he didn't even get a chance to much. I love how he put him as being one of the devoted servants in this dispensation.
I bet Sidney Gilbert was wicked excited when the Lord revealed this to Joseph Smith. I bet he was I bet he felt like oh, peace, and just like relieved that, "You're exactly where I need you to be, you're gonna be my agent." And I don't feel like this is a rebuke to him at all. I think it was a balm to his wounded soul. And sometimes you just get cholera and die, Heber C. Kimball.
And, you know, this is what needs to be remembered. God is aware of each of us. He knows our circumstances. And when we serve Him, this is what verse seven is all about. When we serve him we can only be blessed, whatever that looks like. Being called to forsake the world: serve in the nursery, or seeing a need and filling it like you said, Tamu. Because look at verse seven, the end goal of all of this is we just have to endure to the end, and we will be saved. There's no greater blessing. That's what we have to remember when times get tough. We don't get the calling we wish we had. Just endure to the end and you will be saved.
So when it came to helping out the Saints, they really relied on the help and kindness of others. And so there's a man who's willing to answer that call, kind of. I'm going to show you who is and what the Lord had to say to him in the next segment. This is good.
Segment 4 44:46
Oh, so here's my question for you guys. Going back to the story that I shared at the beginning about the way my siblings and I would fight, I'm curious, has there ever been a time where you were just plain wronged?
Yeah, I mean, for sure. And what I did was buy into it and ended up on the couch at Pottery Barn. I took the very worst things that person said about me and made it gospel truth.
I think that after the weeping, wailing and gnashing of teeth and cussing out, I'll try to process it. And by the time I take it to the Lord, I'm pretty much like, I'm not talking to the person. So I like to say I'm putting it on the cross, but I put it on the cross easily. And then I leave it low enough so I can go get it back off if I need to. But then eventually, I just, I just lay it on the cross and leave it alone. Eventually. It's a process.
Sometimes I like to pick it up and just really wallow.
There's some Sicilian in me, I'm certain of it. I haven't done my DNA testing. But there for sure is because I'm so easy to be like, "You're dead to me."
Oh, when we were younger if Tammy heard about an injustice, she would boycott every business. Every day we were roommates, she came home, she had someone else to boycott.
I boycotted through Smith's grocery store for a good, solid 15 years.
Tammy's in the original Godfather, for sure.
For sure. Well, section 54 is an answer to a group of people, of Saints, who were totally wrong. Like this is a sad story. So we got to look at section 54. You can read this section heading all about it. I'm just gonna give you the background on this.
So here we have the saints. They're coming in droves from New York to Ohio. And there's a man by the name of Leman Copely. Now we studied him a couple of weeks ago, he was part of the Shakers. And we read a whole section about how they went and tried to teach the Shakers and have them converted. And Leman Copely, he joined the church, he felt the spirit. But then he kind of was like, "I don't think I believe it anymore."
But during the time when he was believing and not believing he agreed to share his land with the Saints coming from New York, 759 acres of land in Thompson, Iowa, yeah, tons of land. So the Saints started coming, and they were living on his land. And they built fences. They planted his fields, and they've made major improvements to his property. And then he decided, "Yeah, I want you all off. Everybody off my land." He came in and kicked the Saints off of his land. And he even charged them rent for as long as they had been staying on his land. And as long as they were staying from the moment he said to get off his land. So the Saints are pretty upset about this because they have literally nowhere to go. They thought that they were able to just stay and be happy on his land.
So Joseph Smith goes to the Lord and says, "What do we do about this?" And we get Doctrine and Covenants section 54. So here's a couple of verses. We're going to start at the end before we go to the beginning because here's what the Lord has to say to the Saints is in verse 10, and, Tamu, will you read verse 10, for us?
And again, be patient in tribulation until I come; and, behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, and they who have sought me early shall find rest to their souls. Even so. Amen.
Okay, how does this council help us?
Well, it's just a reminder that Christ can succor all things. And so if we give it to him, like completely give it to him. He's not touching it if you touch it, we completely give it to him. And we're patient that it will be taken care of for us. And it'll be taken care of.
And I love that word quickly.He's going to take care of it quickly.
Now, that means he's gonna take a long time. He's not coming quickly. So you just got to let it go completely.
Because we've learned that that word quickly means when he comes, it's fast. When I come, it's gonna be fast, and my reward is with me. So just get ready because, "Boom, when I come."
But when I come is who knows when? Yeah, and what's up with the, "if you have thought me early?"
Now that's what I want to know. Because what do you think it means, to seek the Lord early? Like how does seeking him early help us when the tribulation comes? Do any of you have a time in your life where you thought, "Boy, I'm glad I know, Jesus"?
Oh, 2020. I mean, you remove the church building, you remove the people, you remove the relationship with the people, 2020 is a time that I am so grateful that my relationship was with Lord.
You sought him early.
Because everything else went away. Prior to 2020, I didn't have to get to know him in 2020 because in 2020, I was able to rest. And the experiences that I had had and knowing that because I know, I know the spirit, that anything that was going on would pass. And even should I lose my life in 2020, that I would be okay.
That's powerful. Beautiful.
I think that's a perfect example of seeking him early and what that does for us. So thank you for sharing that.
You can read through section 54. There's some really fun things. I thought this was interesting that verse three, the Lord is speaking to the Saints, not Leman Copely, because some of the Saints were really mad at him, rightfully so. And they were actually treating Leman with distain. And so the Lord saying to them in verse three, "and if your brothern desire to escape their enemies, let them repent of all their sins and become truly humble before me and contrite." So it's kind of like, "Listen, I know you're mad, but you've got to stay humble and be kind."
And then he comes to them in verses seven through eight. And here's the "help them out" thing that we've been talking about this whole episode.Because we have around 60 saints who have left Thompson, and together, they took care of each other, and they journey to Missouri. And so I really like this instruction in verses seven through eight. So you can just kind of write to the outside, "60 faithful members took care of each other to get from Ohio to Missouri."
So four days after this revelation was given, a man by the name of W.W. Phelps arrived to Kirtland and he's an important man in our Church histories, this is kind of fun to learn about. And he asked what he could do to help out. And so Joseph went and asked the Lord and he got Doctrine and Covenants section 55.
So I'm going to give you two titles here, the section title for 54 is "Patient in Tribulation." Section 55, the title is "W.W. Phelps, Remission of Sins."
And this was given to W.W. Phelps because he and his family just arrived in Kirtland. And he wants to know, "Tell me what I can do to help?" So Joseph prays, asks the Lord, and we get this section.
And it's just so perfect. I love W.W. Phelps. He's gonna do a lot of amazing things in the Church. He's a fun person to look up. In fact, if you're ever bored at Church on Sunday, grab your hymn book and look up his name in the back because he's written several hymns. He assisted Emma with the hymn book because of one specific skill that he had. And so the Lord uses his skill. Like, have you guys ever been at church and notice some people get the same calling all the time, because that's what they're good at? You have any examples of that in your own ward?
I have a friend who no, matter where she moves in the country, she's always in Young Women.
Perfect example. Any others?
I don't really know anybody. I don't have those long term relationships.
Well, I'm thinking of like, it seems like the same people are always the word organist, the word chorister. Like I have a friend, she's always given a calling with music because she's really good at music. And sometimes she's like, "Can I just be something besides this?"
I'm always a Sunday school teacher. Always.
You always are.
I always come back to middle school. And I love that age.
I mean, you're good at it. So your W.W. Phelps. If there's a calling that follows you, W.W. Phelps is like, "What do you want me to do?" And the Lord says, "Well, let me tell you." So we're going to read verse one and four and that's what you need to know about this section. So, HB, will you read verse one, and then, Tamu, I'm gonna have you read what his talent is in verse four. So go ahead, HB.
Behold, thus saith the Lord unto you, my servant William, yea, even the Lord of the whole earth, thou art called and chosen; and after thou hast been baptized by water, which if you do with an eye single to my glory, you shall have a remission of your sins and a reception of the Holy Spirit by the laying on of hands;
And now here's what he's called to do. Verse four, Tamu, hit it.
And again, you shall be ordained to assist my servant Oliver Cowdery to do the work of printing, and of selecting and writing books for schools in this church, that little children also may receive instruction before me as is pleasing unto me.
Perfect. Isn't that fun?
He'll set up the very first printing press for the Church in Missouri. He published the first newspaper, which was called the "Evening in the Morning Star." I said earlier, he helped compile and publish the hymn book, as well as revelations for the Book of Commandments. I mean, his job was as a printer. And so the Lord used him. And he also donated money, $500, to help complete the temple in Kirtland. And so he plays an important role. And the Lord uses his talent.
So if there's anybody out there who feels like they're in the same calling all the time, you're W.W. Phelps and the Lord needs you. I think that's kind of cool. I like that. The Lord, he continues to ask us to help each other out by using our gifts and whatever we can to benefit others.
So in the next segment, we have another man who's willing to help others out and the background for section 56 is very fascinating.
Segment 5 55:00
Okay, here's what I want to know. As parents, Tamu, we just got done talking about parents because you're with your daughter in Texas, who's now a mom, How fun is that? So you have a grandbaby, HB, you don't. But your a mom, all of us are moms. So my question is, as a child, did your parent ever say to you, "Because I said so, that's why," or maybe have you ever said that to your own child?
I plead the fifth about myself.
I I think my mom probably did say that once. And then I broke her down. Like I was arguing before the Supreme Court at age five, you know? Yeah. And I don't say, "Because I said, so." I just start to yell, "Just do it!"
That's true. I've heard that. Well, Tamu, you're in good company because the Lord, he kind of uses that phrase here in section 56. Because I said so. That's why we're doing it. The Lord said so.
So I thought this was pretty interesting about section 56. Here's what you need to know. We have a man by the name of Ezra Thayre, we've met him earlier and he's on the scene again. And he joined the Church in New York, and he followed the command to move to Ohio. So he sold all of his belongings in New York and it made him really wealthy.
He and his family, they come to Ohio and they need a place to stay so they live on the Williams' farm. Now Ezra agreed to fully consecrate all of his money to the Lord and he was promised, as part of that consecration, a part of the Williams' farm. Now Ezra had been assigned by the Lord to serve a mission with Thomas B. Marsh back in section 52, verse 22, we read that there were all those men's names who got mission calls. But Ezra refused to go on his mission until he had a deed to the land or an assurance that it would all be well when he returned. Well, that wasn't the way it worked. When you consecrate anything to the Lord, you don't get to tell the Lord how to do it. So, according to verse eight, his pride and his selfishness leads us to a verse that is the key to this whole section that we need to learn about. Let's look at verse four. HB, will you read verse four for us, please?
Wherefore I, the Lord, command and revoke, as it seemeth me good; and all this to be answered upon the heads of the rebellious, saith the Lord.
Now, verse five is where he's revoking a command, verse five says:
Wherefore, I revoke the commandment which was given unto my servants Thomas B. Marsh and Ezra Thayre, and give a new commandment unto my servant Thomas, that he shall take up his journey speedily to the land of Missouri, and my servant Selah J. Griffin shall also go with him.
So the Lord's like, "You know what, strike that, reverse it. I know I said Ezra Thayre and now I'm revoking it. I'm gonna send somebody else in his stead. And why am I doing that? Oh, I'll tell you." Look at verse eight. Tamu, read verse eight for us and give us the reason why the Lord revoked Ezra's mission call.
And again, verily I say unto you, that my servant Ezra Thayre must repent of his pride, and of his selfishness, and obey the former commandment which I have given him concerning the place upon which he lives.
This is an interesting concept, because oftentimes we ask ourselves, "Why would the Lord ask someone to do something? Or why would the bishop give that calling? Or why would the Lord let that happen if he knew the person was going to sin? Can't we just cut out the middleman and not worry about it?" And here the Lord saying, "Look, I can command and revoke whenever I want to because I'm in charge." And, HB, read verse 14 for us.
Behold, thus saith the Lord unto my people—you have many things to do and to repent of; for behold, your sins have come up unto me, and are not pardoned, because you seek to counsel in your own ways.
Why do you say, "Yikes" to that?
For him to say, "Your sins came up, and I noticed those, and they are not pardoned because you're trying to do things not using my pattern."
It reminds me of a couple summers ago, HB and I put our kids in a swimming lesson with the most incredible swim teacher, like I love her so much. And she was so mean, the meanest swim teacher ever.
Why do you love the meanest swim teacher?
Listen, I may have been paying for swimming lessons, no, I paid for parenting lessons.
Now let me just say this. She was an Olympic swimmer. She qualified for the Olympic team back in the 1970s. And she was also a teacher for special needs kids, so I completely trusted her. You need to know this as I tell you about this unusual and very life changing moment for me as a parent, and as a daughter of God.
Because here's my little four year old, and she is naughty at four, like so naughty, and she thought she was in charge. That was my biggest thing with this child and we put her in this pool. I'll never forget this. She's in the pool and the teacher says, "You hang on to the wall right here." Then the teacher went over to work with Lilly. And Sophia is so naughty because she's not going to listen. So she lets go of the wall.
To me, it looks like she's drowning. And I'm sure it happened in a matter of just a few seconds. But of course, at the time, I felt like it was an hour that this was going on. And my friend who originally signed me up to take some lessons with this teacher gave me the advice. When we first started, she says, "Whatever you do, just remember, Liz is in charge. Trust her methods." And I'm like, "Okay." And I can see the teacher look over at my daughter and goes back to working with my other daughter. And I am like trying to get up. I'm starting to freak out a little bit like, "What's gonna happen? What's gonna happen?" And the teacher looks over again and see Sophia just, you know, splashing in the water, trying to get back to the side and can't. And right at the moment where I'm about to leap out of my seat, the teacher goes over, grabs my little daughter's hand, pulls her up, and has her grab onto the side.
And Sophia is getting the water out of her mouth, and she's just all bright eyed. And the teacher says to her, "You're not in charge. You're not in charge. Who's in charge here?" And she's crying. She goes, "You." And she says, "That's right. This is my water. I'm in charge. What I say goes, do you understand?" She's like, "Yes." And then she says, I'll never forget this, "And when your mom says to do something, who's in charge? You or your mom?" She goes, "Mom." And then she says, "Do you pay the mortgage? Do you pay the bills? I don't think so. Your mom's in charge. When someone older's in charge, you listen to them."
I'll tell you what, she never let go the side of the pool again. She listened to that swim teacher. And now is one of the best swimmers in our family. But I remember thinking, "That was a great lesson for me," because I use that line all the time. Every time my daughter would argue with me, I would say "You're not in charge. You don't pay the bills. You don't know the plan. You're not in charge."
And I just have next verse 14, "You're not in charge." God's saying, "You seek to counsel in your own ways, but I'm in charge. I understand what's going on. I have a plan for this whole thing." Right?
Oh, I love that swim teacher.
She also taught me to tell my daughter when she cried to get her own way. You say to her, "You do not get to bully me with your tears. Dry those tears."
I've used that a thousand times. T
That's a game changer right there as a parent. You don't get to bully me with your tears.
Boy, she was good. She was so good. I was terrified of her.
Oh, yeah. Every parent is until the end of the summer and you're like, "I'm the best mom in the world now."
Okay, listen, we have to read this quote by Elder Boyd K. Packer because here's what he has to say about the Lord and why he changes and how this is okay and how the Lord's in charge. So, Holly, will you read this quote for us, please?
“Changes in organization or procedures are a testimony that revelation is ongoing. While doctrines remain fixed, the methods or procedures do not. …
“There will be changes made in the future as in the past. Whether the Brethren make changes or resist them depends entirely upon the instructions they receive through the channels of revelation which were established in the beginning.
“The doctrines will remain fixed, eternal; the organization, programs, and procedures will be altered as directed by Him whose church this is. …
“And in the end, what is given comes because the Lord has spoken it, ‘whether by [His] own voice or by the voice of [His] servants, it is the same.’ (D&C 1:38.) We know His voice when He speaks” (Elder Boyd K. Packer, “Revelation in a Changing World,” Ensign, Nov. 1989, 15, 16).
I mean, just looking at that, quote, I'm wondering, how does knowing that revelation is ongoing, and that things can change, affect your view of God?
I really liked that aspect of our faith. But the Lord still speaks and adapts things for our day. Because, you know, we don't live in "Little House on the Prairie."
What about for you, Tamu?
I think that sometimes when we get lessons like this, then we use these lessons and we weaponize it against people who have already had the scriptures weaponized against them. Just marginalized groups, where we have said that God did something or this is God's word, when really it was never God's word.
But I also believe that as humans, then we try to double down on it by using the scriptures to solidify this other thing over here, when really the two have nothing to do with each other. And this is one of those things where, as I'm saying this, I know that some people will listen to this and they will be uncomfortable. And I'm asking them to tarry with me for a while and lean into and wait for the Comforter, which testifies the truth of all things, to settle in on this. And so because I'm not saying that leadership is wrong or leadership is not true, but I do know that I have never been cursed.
Any more than, or any less than, I don't believe that God gives curse. I believe that there are consequences. But I also believe that Adam will be punished for his sins and I will be punished for mine.
And so I think that God, when he tells us to do something, he's in charge. And I think that when we stray from that, there is going to be a consequence. You know, I had a teacher in the seventh grade, Mr. Needham, and he would say "You make a decision, you see it through. You suffer or you benefit from the consequences."
I love that so much, Tamu. Thank you, thank you for sharing that. Well, and thank goodness that we, like you said, Holly, that we live in a religion that we belong to every religion that allows for change. And I am so thankful for that, especially with that quote, where it says, "the doctrines will remain fixed. The program's procedures, policies are going to change." But at the beginning, when he said, "there's going to be changes made in the future in the past," then this was interesting, "whether the brothren make changes or resist them, depends entirely upon the instructions they received through the channels of revelation, which were established in the beginning."
We have definitely seen to our lifetime, these men receiving revelation that is now benefiting people, and we're grateful for that change. We are grateful for them listening to the Lord saying, "I'm in charge." And I'm so grateful for the changes we've seen, seems like more change now than ever growing up.
I just really appreciate what Tamu just taught that we've got to be really careful, I've got to be really careful, that I don't ever weaponize any part of the gospel.
When you are in a majority, it's easy to only see things through your own worldview, and just to take more care.
I totally agree with you, Holly. That was a significant point that we just learned from Tamu. Oh, that was great.
Well, and going to the part where Tammy said, "Let us be broken together. Let us have this moment where you're going to be uncomfortable." Verse 18, in section 56, is the blessing that comes for being uncomfortable and I love you brought this up, Tamu. We just have to read verse 18. This is the blessing for realizing that God is in charge and then it's okay to be uncomfortable. Look how cool this is, these promises. Tamu, will you read verse 18?
But blessed are the poor who are pure in heart, whose hearts are broken, and whose spirits are contrite, for they shall see the kingdom of God coming in power and great glory unto their deliverance; for the fatness of the earth shall be theirs.
Great blessing, don't you think?
I do. And I agree with you, Tammy, I think that the Church is changing. And I do want to speak to that. I do want to speak to the these last few conference talks. And the efforts that are put behind an individual saying something. And I'm just grateful for a mother who told me that, "If you don't know what to say not to be quiet, but to let people know at first, 'I may fumble my stumble and my words along the way. Please listen to me with yo ur heart.'" The takeaway, here I'm trying to comfort people, right? After I said don't try to comfort them because that's not your job. And I don't feel that it's my job. But I also want the people that are speaking up to know that even though you don't have the perfect wording. I see you too.
And I see you seeing me.
I appreciate that. Because I'll tell you what, Tamu, like, I feel like I am constantly stumbling on my words trying to get it right. And trying to be sensitive and trying to recognize that I walked around the church with, you know, everyone looks just like me. And I feel like a weirdo and like I don't fit in and so I can only imagine. And then I try and I feel like I never quite get it and I'm afraid I'm gonna say something wrong and offend people. And I just really appreciate that you make it okay to look on the heart.
She does. She makes it okay to get it wrong.
Yeah, it's okay to get it wrong. And I get it wrong a lot because I I want to champion anybody who doesn't have a voice because I know I have the privilege of getting listened to.
Well, Tamu, just read verse 19. Verse 19, is what you just say about doing that for people. Read this.
For behold, the Lord shall come, and his recompense shall be with him, and he shall reward every man, and the poor shall rejoice;
HB, how do you interpret that verse?
It personifies recompense as someone coming with him. The recompense shall be with him, and the poor shall rejoice.
And the poor is all of us.
I had to look up recompense, it means to compensate. And so I think that that makes it even more beautiful.
Yeah. And he will.
And he does. And he does. It's not future tense. It's present tense.
He is in charge. He is. Wow.
Thank you both of you for sharing your comments about this because it's been such a thought-provoking discussion with the segment. I've loved every minute of it.
We are going to see now it all come full circle in Doctrine and Covenants section 57. I'm going to show that to you in the next segment.
Segment 6 1:10:58
Okay, I'm gonna need a drumroll for this one because section 57 is what the Saints have been waiting for. You guys, this is it. Doctrine and Covenants section 57 is the revelation about where Zion will be.
This has been a matter of excitement among the members of the Church. In fact, you guys probably remember the really first rift in the Church was when Hiram Paige claimed to be able to receive revelation as to where Zion would be and the Lord was like, "Look, I'm not telling you where it is, but it's not there yet." So we have been waiting for this section, this revelation and this concept since it was first introduced in Doctrine and Covenants section six, which is kind of cool, the cause of Zion. And, Tamu, you were with us when we talked about it with Yahosh, which was so cool. So this is neat. I love that you're here full circle for this because we first introduced it with you. And now here it is.
So ladies, give me a drumroll right now. Let me hear it and those of you listening do a drumroll wherever you are. Kids, drumroll on your table. Go. Let me hear it.
Are you drumrolling, Holly?
Okay. (drumroll noise) like that. Come on, give me a drumroll.
Okay, Doctrine and Covenants section 57. Let's look at verses one through three. Here it is. I'm so excited. Let's start with you, Tamu. And then Holly and then we will each read a verse. Go.
Hearken, O ye elders of my church, saith the Lord your God, who have assembled yourselves together, according to my commandments, in this land, which is the land of Missouri, which is the land which I have appointed and consecrated for the gathering of the saints.
Wherefore, this is the land of promise, and the place for the city of Zion.
And thus saith the Lord your God, if you will receive wisdom here is wisdom. Behold, the place which is now called Independence is the center place; and a spot for the temple is lying westward, upon a lot which is not far from the courthouse.
Okay, the title for section 57 is "The Center Place of Zion." And this is so exciting because after the Lord revealed the location of Zion in July of 1831, many Saints traveled nearly 900 miles to Independence, Missouri, to settle and build Zion because I'm going to give you a cool cross reference, and I just put it right below section 57 so I never forget it. Psalms, chapter 102, verse 16, and we have to turn there. Turn to Psalms 102, verse 16. Let's find out why it was so important to create Zion. And whoever's got it, will you read it?
When the Lord shall build up Zion, he shall appear in his glory.
I mean, is there a better blessing for building up Zion? Yhey were ready. Look, if we can build Zion, Christ is coming. He is coming. And so they were so excited to have this done. And this is kind of cool.
A fun fact about this was, this revelation is given in July 20, 1831. On August 2 of 1831, so just a couple weeks later, after they arrived, the branch members, they had a ceremony. And 12 men who represented the 12 tribes of Israel, they carried a freshly cut oak log, and they placed it across a stone that had been set by Oliver Cowdery, thus laying the symbolic foundation for the establishment of Zion. And from that humble beginning, the Saints constructed a building that was used as both a church and a schoolhouse.
I think this is so neat, like, here it is, it's Zion. And then I have some unfortunate news, almost in a Debbie Downer sort of way. Wah, wah. They don't really ever get to do it. They're not allowed to build Zion. And there's some cross references as to why so I want you to look at section 101 verse six. You can read all of section 57. There's so many beautiful things in here about creating Zion and wisdom and doing this and it's really cool. But for us, what we need to know about this Zion is the Saints didn't get to build it. And according to Section 101, verse six, here's why. And you have that HB, will you read that?
Behold, I say unto you, there were jarrings, and contentions, and envyings, and strifes, and lustful and covetous desires among them; therefore by these things they polluted their inheritances.
Like how are we doing? Are we ready to build Zion?
No. I don't know if we're ready to go back to Relief Society.
I'm ready. I'm ready.
I mean, I'm ready. But I don't know what it's gonna be like.
If we go back to Psalm a few verses down.
Eighteen, it says, And this shall be written for the generation to come, and the people which shall be created shall praise the Lord. O
Oh, Tamu. Thank you. Thank you for having us read that. In fact, we are the generation to come. Are we praising the Lord as a Zion people? I want to know. Okay, I want to know your thoughts on this. What do you guys think?
I just feel like this is a call to me to repent, that I've got to make sure that I am not causing jarring and contentions. That I've got to make every effort to have our congregation be a safe place and a haven and I've got to take personal responsibility for that.
I think we will love this quote so much. It is so applicable to what you just said, HB. So we just have to read this quote by Elder D. Todd Christofferson. It's given in a general conference address in 2008. And here's what he says, I'll read this one.
"The Savior was critical of some of the early Saints for their 'lustful … desires' (D&C 101:6; see also D&C 88:121). These were people who lived in a non-television, non-film, non-Internet, non-iPod world. In a world now awash in sexualized images and music, are we free from lustful desires and their attendant evils? Far from pushing the limits of modest dress or indulging in the vicarious immorality of pornography, we are to hunger and thirst after righteousness. To come to Zion, it is not enough for you or me to be somewhat less wicked than others. We are to become not only good but holy men and women. Recalling Elder Neal A. Maxwell’s phrase, let us once and for all establish our residence in Zion and give up the summer cottage in Babylon (see Neal A. Maxwell, A Wonderful Flood of Light , 47). (Elder D. Todd Christofferson, "Come to Zion," October 2008 general conference)
So I just kind of want to know, what are some of your thoughts? What are some of the ways that you build Zion or have seen Zion built? Or give me your thoughts on that quote.
I'm just thinking about a really nice lady in my ward. When she sees me, it's like a celebrity has appeared before her, like, she is tickled to see me. And I thought, what if we all gave that same, "Ah, oh, my goodness, I can't believe you walked around the corner!" I mean, and we don't have to be like zippity doo da and over sell it. But what if we felt that like, "Oh, I can't believe my good fortune that this person just walked around the corner." I think that goes a long way. That feels more like Zion might be my neighborhood. And whenever I'd see this woman, it feels like Zion.
That's a great example, Holly. What about you, Tamu? What are your thoughts?
I think we all ascribe to give up our summer cottage and Babylon. Some days, I do a really great job of it. Other days, I struggle with it. But I will say that to establish Zion, I think is a daily process. And I think sometimes, if you go three or four days, and you've done really good, you get comfortable. And I guess for me, when I think about establishing as Zion, I know me, and I know that I can not get comfortable.
I like how you say, you know, it's just something you just kind of keep working on every day.
And I love that you said that Holly because let's go to section 57 verse 14. I thought it was so interesting how the Lord says, "and thus let those of whom I have spoken be planted in the land of Zion."
And that's 55 verse five, too. "That you may be planted in the land of your inheritance to do this work."
HB, I love that you notice that I didn't. That is so cool. I am marking that right now.
And we're here to help each other grow. And so let's do that. Let's get ready because Jesus is coming. He is coming and we have got to be ready. And that's all this is about. So let's just help each other out. You kids stop fighting. You kids need to get along because you're going to need each other. And when Christ comes, that's when we're gonna really need each other. We need each other now to prepare for him to come. And we are going to build this Zion. And so that is the whole message of these sections 51 through 57. And I just can't think of two better people to discuss it within you guys. So thank you to both of you. I couldn't do this without you.
Tammy, I have no idea.
So I love you both so much.
We are stronger together.
Okay, well, just take a minute, gather your thoughts, and tell me what your takeaway was. What's something that you will take away from today's lesson?
I just can't believe you called me five minutes before we did this. And then in section 52, that whole pattern. And what Tamu said about remember to remember, I'm going to treasure that all the days of my life.
My takeaway is, I love that Holly shared her story. I love that she trusted us and that to be vulnerable with us. Because my takeaway is that God sees us. He sees us and he answers our prayers. And sometimes that means that we have to close our eyes and listen, because when we open our eyes, the bishop will be sitting here on the sofa. Because we're all that we have. All we have is each other. And all God has to work with is us. And so we have to show up in the form of who we are but for and on behalf of the Lord's errand. And, and I love that.
Absolutely. That's mine, too. That's my take away. It really is mine too.
And thanks for making it a place where I could share that. That was hard to talk about how low I felt last week. I appreciate being willing to share that
And forever, Jjst remember to remember. Take some time this week and remember, write down your remembers, write them down.
I love that.
Remember to remember your remembers. Write those remembers down.
So thank you, you guys. I love you both so much.
Well, for those of you listening, again, we want to hear what your big takeaway was from this episode. So if you have not joined our discussion group on Facebook or Instagram, go do it. It's so fun. And we love to read what you guys are writing and the things you're sharing and the thoughts you have throughout the week. And then on Sunday we ask for you what your big takeaway was. So comment on the post that relates to this lesson and let us know what you've learned. And I read all of them. It's my favorite part of Sunday.
You can get to both our Instagram and Facebook by going to our shownotes for this episode on ldsliving.com/sundayonmonday and go there anyway because it's such a great place where you can find the links to all the references that we used as well as a complete transcript of this discussion. So go check that out.
The Sunday on Monday study group is a Deseret Bookshelf Plus original brought to you by LDS Living. It's written and hosted by me, Tammy Uzelac Hall, and today our fabulous study group participant members were Tammy Smith and Holly Butterfield Rawlings. You can find more information about these ladies at ldsliving.com/sundayonmonday.
Our podcast is produced by Katie Lambert and me. It is recorded and mixed by Mix at Six Studios and our executive producer is Erin Hallstrom. Thanks for being here. We'll see you next week. And please remember that in a Pottery Barn on a couch, you are God's favorite.
Oh my gosh, there's the biggest right now.
Oh no! Save her!
You guys, I'm scared. I don't like killing stuff but look at this.
Is it flying? What's it doing?
It's a June bug!
It is a June bug.
They'll dive bomb and hit you hard.
It's Bug Hunters International with Tamu Smith.
I love this moment so much.
Tamu is the sword of truth, she's got her sword of truth.
Yeah, you're catching it, you're catching that June bug, sis.
Okay, okay, go. Go.
Okay, here we go. I think we gonna make it.
Tamu buying a chair in Walmart:
Title for Section 51: Law of Consecration & Stewardship
Background for section 51:
"Section 51 applies that part of the law of the Lord generally referred to as the law of consecration (see D&C 42:30–39) to the specific circumstances of the Saints between 1831 and 1833, first in the Kirtland area—that is, at Thompson, Ohio—and later in Missouri. As originally received, Doctrine and Covenants 51 directed the Saints to legally deed over all their property and possessions to the bishop as agent for the Church. Stewardships would then be appointed back to them, but legal title to their stewardship remained with the bishop. Should a steward over consecrated property leave the Church, he could therefore take nothing of his original property with him. This was all in accordance with the law of the Lord given earlier (see D&C 42:30–32)" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 51," Deseret Book).
It was revelation given for Edward Partridge:
1 Hearken unto me, saith the Lord your God, and I will speak unto my servant aEdward Partridge, and give unto him directions; for it must needs be that he receive directions how to organize this people (Doctrine and Covenants 51:1).
4 And let my servant Edward Partridge, when he shall appoint a man his aportion, give unto him a writing that shall secure unto him his portion, that he shall hold it, even this right and this inheritance in the church, until he transgresses and is not accounted worthy by the voice of the church, according to the blaws and ccovenants of the church, to belong to the church (Doctrine and Covenants 51:4).
3 Things About the Law of Consecration:
3 Wherefore, let my servant Edward Partridge, and those whom he has chosen, in whom I am well pleased, appoint unto this people their aportions, every man bequal according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and cneeds (Doctrine and Covenants 51:3).
- Equal: "Equality here does not refer to equality of result, so that everyone receives exactly the same stewardship. Rather, the equality here is an equality of process, so that everyone receives their stewardship upon common principles" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 51," Deseret Book).
Parable of the 10 Virgins: Matthew 25: 1–13
Benefits for living the law of consecration:
- Steward: "A person who takes care of the affairs or property of another. That which a steward cares for is called a stewardship. All things on earth belong to the Lord; we are His stewards” (Guide to the Scriptures, “Steward, Stewardship,” scriptures.lds.org).
The Saints had been prepared for the law of consecration:
- As I have commanded you: CR Doctrine and Covenants 38:27
Title for Section 52: A pattern in all things—teach what the apostles and prophets have written
Background for section 52:
"By June 1831, most of the eastern Saints had arrived in the Kirtland area, and many had, for the moment at least, been settled on land belonging to Leman Copley in Thompson, Ohio. In obedience to the command of the Lord given the preceding February (see D&C 44:1), the Church then held its fourth conference, a priesthood conference, in Kirtland on 3–6 June.
"Brief minutes of this conference were taken by John Whitmer, and his minutes tell us that forty-four elders attended. It was also at this conference, the first held in Ohio, that Joseph Smith ordained five brethren to the 'high priesthood.' They were the first ordained high priests in the restored Church" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 52," Deseret Book).
Elders called on Missions: Verses 22–32
9 And let them journey from thence preaching the word by the way, saying anone other things than that which the bprophets and apostles have written, and that which is taught them by the cComforter through the prayer of faith (Doctrine and Covenants 52:9).
God's pattern to avoid deception:
- Contrite: "Contrite came to English by way of Anglo-French from the Latin verb conterere, meaning 'to grind' or 'to bruise' (See "Contrite," Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
- Edify: "To teach (someone) in a way that improves the mind or character" (See "Edify," Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
33 And from thence, whosoever I will shall ago forth among all nations, and it shall be told them what they shall do; for I have a great work laid up in store, for Israel shall be bsaved, and I will clead them whithersoever I will, and no power shall dstay my hand (Doctrine and Covenants 52:33).
Title of Section 53: Sidney Gilbert—Forsake the World; Endure to the End
Heading for Section 53:
Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet to Algernon Sidney Gilbert, at Kirtland, Ohio, June 8, 1831. At Sidney Gilbert’s request, the Prophet inquired of the Lord as to Brother Gilbert’s work and appointment in the Church.
1 Behold, I say unto you, my servant Sidney Gilbert, that I have heard your prayers; and you have called upon me that it should be made known unto you, of the Lord your God, concerning your acalling and belection in the church, which I, the Lord, have raised up in these last days (Doctrine and Covenants 53:1).
Background for Section 53:
"Algernon Sidney Gilbert was one of the original converts of the missionaries to the Lamanites (see D&C 28:8; 30:5; 32:1–3) during their stay in Kirtland, Ohio, during the late fall of 1830. Sidney, then just short of his forty-first birthday, was a partner to Newel K. Whitney in N. K. Whitney & Co., a successful general merchandise store in Kirtland.
"Since Sidney Gilbert had not been given any calling or assignment by the Lord during the conference of June 1831 (see D&C 52), he approached Joseph Smith after the close of the conference and asked what the Lord would have him do. Joseph wrote that Doctrine and Covenants 53 was received in answer to Sidney's inquiry.1 According to the Far West Record,2 Sidney Gilbert was ordained an elder by Joseph Smith on 6 June 1831, along with W. W. Phelps (see D&C 55) and others. Doctrine and Covenants 53 and 55 must therefore be dated together on or before 6 June 1831" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 53," Deseret Book).
Sidney Gilbert's Calling:
3 Take upon you mine ordination, even that of an elder, to preach faith and repentance and aremission of sins, according to my word, and the reception of the Holy Spirit by the laying on of bhands; (Doctrine and Covenants 53:3).
4 I am the same which have taken the aZion of bEnoch into mine own bosom; and verily, I say, even as many as have cbelieved in my name, for I am Christ, and in mine own name, by the virtue of the dblood which I have spilt, have I pleaded before the Father for them (Doctrine and Covenants 53:4).
17 And the hour and the day is not given unto them, wherefore let them act upon this land as for years, and this shall turn unto them for their good (Doctrine and Covenants 51:17).
The Death of Sidney Gilbert:
"The drafting and signing of the above, was the last public act of the keeper of the Lord’s storehouse Algernon Sidney Gilbert, for he was attacked with the cholera the same day, and died about the 29th. He had been called to preach the Gospel, but had been known to say that he “would rather die than go forth to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles 3" (History of the Church, Vol 2, Chapter 8, p. 118, byustudies.byu.edu).
"Heber C. Kimball remarks: “The Lord took him at his word.” Extracts from Kimball’s journal, Times and Seasons, vol. 6, p. 839 (History of the Church, Vol 2, Chapter 8, p. 118, byustudies.byu.edu).
"The remarks in the body of the history, and this expression from Elder Kimball’s journal are liable to create a misunderstanding concerning Brother Algernon Sidney Gilbert, than whom the Lord has had few more devoted servants in this dispensation" (B. H. Roberts in History of the Church, Vol 2, Chapter 8, p. 118, byustudies.byu.edu).
Title for Section 54: Patient in Tribulation
Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet to Newel Knight, at Kirtland, Ohio, June 10, 1831. Members of the Church living in Thompson, Ohio, were divided on questions having to do with the consecration of properties. Selfishness and greed were manifest. Following his mission to the Shakers (see the heading to section 49), Leman Copley had broken his covenant to consecrate his large farm as a place of inheritance for the Saints arriving from Colesville, New York. As a consequence, Newel Knight (leader of the members living in Thompson) and other elders had come to the Prophet asking how to proceed. The Prophet inquired of the Lord and received this revelation, which commands the members in Thompson to leave Leman Copley’s farm and journey to Missouri.
Background for Section 54:
"Leman Copley1 owned 759 acres of land in Thompson, Ohio. When Leman joined the Church, he agreed at first to share his land in Thompson with the Saints who were arriving from the East. The agreement apparently was that Leman would consecrate half of his farm and sell the other half to the Church at fair terms.2 When Leman returned, however, from the Shaker mission that he himself had enthusiastically proposed but which was unsuccessful, he appeared to have been somewhat "shaken" himself, and he began to wonder if his former church was not right after all and the restored Church wrong.
"To make matters worse, when Leman returned to Thompson many of the members there, people who were living on his land through his generosity, blamed him for deceiving them with the hope of converting the Shakers and would not 'own him for one of them.'3
"When Bishop Edward Partridge began to divide up Leman's farm on the principles of consecration (see D&C 42, 51) according to the earlier agreement, Leman, who had not yet legally conveyed his property to the Church, withdrew his offer. In the bitter exchanges that followed, Leman ordered the Colesville Saints off his land. He also charged them rent for the time they had lived there, despite the fact that they had planted his fields, built fences, and made other major improvements to the property"4 (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 54," Deseret Book).
10 And again, be apatient in tribulation until I bcome; and, behold, I come quickly, and my creward is with me, and they who have dsought me early shall find erest to their souls. Even so. Amen (Doctrine and Covenants 54:10).
The Lord to the wronged Saints:
Verses 7–8: 60 Faithful Members:
The branch at Thompson, made up mainly of people from Colesville, New York, was commanded, with very little notice, to leave Ohio and move on to Missouri. About sixty faithful members obeyed this commandment, leaving Ohio on 3 July and arriving in Independence, Missouri, on 25 July. The Colesville Saints stuck together in Ohio and throughout their lives in the Church, partially through family ties and other natural bonds of affection but perhaps also in obedience to those verses of the law of the Lord that instructed the New York Saints 'to be together as much as can be.'" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 54," Deseret Book).
Title for Section 55: W.W. Phelps–Remission of Sins
Revelation given through Joseph Smith the Prophet to William W. Phelps, at Kirtland, Ohio, June 14, 1831. William W. Phelps, a printer, and his family had just arrived at Kirtland, and the Prophet sought the Lord for information concerning him.
Background for Section 55:
"W. W. Phelps brought great talent to the early Saints. His experience as a writer, editor, and publisher qualified him for the call issued here and helped him in his subsequent calling as publisher of the Church's first newspaper, The Evening and the Morning Star, in Missouri. Brother Phelps also wrote the lyrics to many favorite LDS hymns, including 'Gently Raise the Sacred Strain,' 'Praise to the Man,' and 'The Spirit of God.'
"According to the Far West Record,2 W. W. Phelps (see D&C 55:2) and A. Sidney Gilbert (see D&C 53:3) were ordained elders by Joseph Smith on 6 June 1831, together with several others. It follows that sections 53 and 55, which accompanied those ordinations, ought to be dated together sometime on or before 6 June. Since Doctrine and Covenants 54 deals with events that probably took place after 6 June, it is likely that Doctrine and Covenants 55 is out of its correct chronological order, belonging properly with section 53 and prior to section 54" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 55," Deseret Book).
The Lord to W. W. Phelps:
1 Behold, thus saith the Lord unto you, my servant William, yea, even the Lord of the whole aearth, thou art called and chosen; and after thou hast been bbaptized by water, which if you do with an eye single to my glory, you shall have a remission of your sins and a reception of the Holy Spirit by the laying on of chands; (Doctrine and Covenants 55:1).
4 And again, you shall be ordained to assist my servant Oliver Cowdery to do the work of printing, and of selecting and writing abooks for bschools in this church, that little cchildren also may receive dinstruction before me as is pleasing unto me (Doctrine and Covenants 55:4).
Title for Section 56: The Lord Commands and Revokes
Background for Section 56:
"Ezra Thayre was one of the New York Saints who went to Kirtland with a fair amount of cash, presumably from selling his New York property. It appears that he had agreed to consecrate his holdings to the Lord and had received in return a promised interest in the Williams farm. But when Ezra was called to Missouri, he wanted to secure his financial interest in Kirtland by receiving some kind of consideration: either by getting his money back or by receiving legal title to a portion of the Williams farm (see vv. 9–10). Essentially, Thayre wanted to own his stewardship at a time when this was not the practice of the Church.2 Though called as a missionary to Missouri, Ezra would not go until his personal interests were secured. His stubbornness in the matter made it necessary for another companion to be provided for Thomas B. Marsh, who was ready to go as commanded. Four months later, on 10 October 1831, a conference of elders in Kirtland rebuked Ezra for his pride and stubbornness, but no other action was taken against him at that time3" (Stephen E. Robinson, H. Dean Garrett, A Commentary on the Doctrine and Covenants, Vol. 2, "Doctrine and Covenants 56," Deseret Book).
The Lord Commands and Revokes:
5 Wherefore, I revoke the commandment which was given unto my servants aThomas B. Marsh and Ezra Thayre, and give a new commandment unto my servant Thomas, that he shall take up his journey speedily to the land of Missouri, and my servant Selah J. Griffin shall also go with him (Doctrine and Covenants 56:4–5).
9 And if he will do this, as there shall be no divisions made upon the land, he shall be appointed still to go to the land of Missouri; (Doctrine and Covenants 56:9).
14 Behold, thus saith the Lord unto my people—you have many things to do and to repent of; for behold, your asins have come up unto me, and are not bpardoned, because you seek to ccounsel in your own ways (Doctrine and Covenants 56:14).
Quote: “Changes in organization or procedures are a testimony that revelation is ongoing. While doctrines remain fixed, the methods or procedures do not. …
“There will be changes made in the future as in the past. Whether the Brethren make changes or resist them depends entirely upon the instructions they receive through the channels of revelation which were established in the beginning.
“The doctrines will remain fixed, eternal; the organization, programs, and procedures will be altered as directed by Him whose church this is. …
“And in the end, what is given comes because the Lord has spoken it, ‘whether by [His] own voice or by the voice of [His] servants, it is the same.’ (D&C 1:38.) We know His voice when He speaks” (Elder Boyd K. Packer, “Revelation in a Changing World,” Ensign, Nov. 1989, 15, 16).
Blessings for letting God be in charge:
18 But blessed are the apoor who are pure in heart, whose hearts are broken, and whose spirits are bcontrite, for they shall see the ckingdom of God coming in power and great glory unto their deliverance; for the fatness of the dearth shall be theirs (Doctrine and Covenants 56:18).
- Recompense: To compensate (See "Recompense," Merriam-Webster Dictionary).
Title for Section 57: The Center Place of Zion
Background for Section 57:
"In June 1831, the Lord commanded Joseph Smith and other elders to convene a conference of the Church in Missouri (see D&C 52:2). Obedient to the command, Joseph Smith and others traveled approximately 900 miles from Ohio to Missouri. After the Prophet arrived in Missouri, he received the revelation now recorded in Doctrine and Covenants 57. In this section the Lord revealed the location for the city of Zion, fulfilling a promise He had made earlier to the Saints (see D&C 52). The Lord also instructed several individuals concerning their roles in establishing Zion" ("Lesson 62: Doctrine and Covenants 57," Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Seminary Teacher Manual, 2014, ChurchofJesusChrist.org )
1 Hearken, O ye elders of my church, saith the Lord your God, who have assembled yourselves together, according to my commandments, in this land, which is the land of aMissouri, which is the bland which I have appointed and cconsecrated for the dgathering of the saints.
3 And thus saith the Lord your God, if you will receive wisdom here is wisdom. Behold, the place which is now called Independence is the acenter place; and a spot for the btemple is lying westward, upon a lot which is not far from the courthouse (Doctrine and Covenants 57:1–3).
Quote: "On 2 August 1831, after the arrival of the branch members, a ceremony was conducted that was filled with symbolism. Twelve men, representing the 12 tribes of Israel, carried a freshly cut oak log and placed it across a stone that had been set by Oliver Cowdery, thus laying the symbolic foundation for the establishment of Zion. From that humble beginning the Saints constructed a building that was used as both a church and a schoolhouse. (Larry C. Porter, “The Colesville Branch in Kaw Township, Jackson County, Missouri, 1831 to 1833,” Regional Studies in Latter-day Saint Church History: Missouri, ed. Arnold K. Garr and Clark V. Johnson (1994), 286–87.)
Why the Saints could not build Zion:
6 Behold, I say unto you, there were jarrings, and acontentions, and benvyings, and cstrifes, and dlustful and covetous desires among them; therefore by these things they polluted their inheritances (Doctrine and Covenants 101:6).
Quote: "The Savior was critical of some of the early Saints for their “lustful … desires” (D&C 101:6; see also D&C 88:121). These were people who lived in a non-television, non-film, non-Internet, non-iPod world. In a world now awash in sexualized images and music, are we free from lustful desires and their attendant evils? Far from pushing the limits of modest dress or indulging in the vicarious immorality of pornography, we are to hunger and thirst after righteousness. To come to Zion, it is not enough for you or me to be somewhat less wicked than others. We are to become not only good but holy men and women. Recalling Elder Neal A. Maxwell’s phrase, let us once and for all establish our residence in Zion and give up the summer cottage in Babylon (see Neal A. Maxwell, A Wonderful Flood of Light , 47)" (Elder D. Todd Christofferson, "Come to Zion," October 2008 general conference).
5 And again, verily I say unto you, for this cause you shall take your journey with my servants Joseph Smith, Jun., and Sidney Rigdon, that you may be aplanted in the land of your inheritance to do this work (Doctrine and Covenants 55:5).