4: “My Work Shall Go Forth” (Doctrine and Covenants 3–5)
No one likes the feeling of being in trouble—that sinking, gut-wrenching feeling that just makes you want to hide under a blanket forever. At one point, Joseph Smith and Martin Harris felt that to an extreme most people will never know. However, there was still hope for them. In this week’s study of Doctrine and Covenants 3–5, we’ll find out what led Martin and Joseph to feeling this way and hear the incredible message of mercy and love that can help all of us climb out from under our blankets.
Section 3 Title: Lost Manuscript
- Sacred promises: The covenant that Martin Harris made to only show the 116 pages to his wife Lucy, his brother, his parents, and Lucy's sister.
Joseph Discovers the Pages Are Gone:
"Upon which Mr. Harris pressed his hands upon his temples, and cried out in a tone of deep anguish, ‘Oh, I have lost my soul! I have lost my soul!’
“Joseph who had not expressed his fears till now, sprang from the table, exclaiming, ‘Martin, have you lost that manuscript? Have you broken your oath, and brought down condemnation upon my head as well as your own?’
“‘Yes; it is gone,’ replied Martin, ‘and I know not where.’ …
“Said Joseph, … ‘All is lost! all is lost! What shall I do? I have sinned—it is I who tempted the wrath of God. I should have been satisfied with the first answer which I received from the Lord; for he told me that it was not safe to let the writing go out of my possession.’ He wept and groaned, and walked the floor continually.
“At length he told Martin to go back and search again.
“‘No’; said Martin, ‘it is all in vain; for I have ripped open beds and pillows [looking for the manuscript]; and I know it is not there.’
“‘Then must I,’ said Joseph, ‘return with such a tale as this? I dare not do it. And how shall I appear before the Lord? Of what rebuke am I not worthy from the angel of the Most High?’ …
“The next morning, he set out for home. We parted with heavy hearts, for it now appeared that all which we had so fondly anticipated, and which had been the source of so much secret gratification, had in a moment fled, and fled forever” (Lucy Mack Smith, History of Joseph Smith by His Mother, ed. Preston Nibley , 125–29).
"As a result, Moroni took the Urim and Thummim and Joseph lost the gift to translate. However, Moroni promised that Joseph could receive them again if he would be 'humble and penitent'" (Doctrine and Covenants Seminary Teacher Manual, Lesson 11: Doctrine and Covenants 3, ChurchofJesusChrist.org).
2 For God doth not awalk in crooked paths, neither doth he bturn to the right hand nor to the left, neither doth he vary from that which he hath said, therefore his paths are straight, and his ccourse is one eternal round.
- Frustrated: Prevented from progressing, succeeding, or being fulfilled (see languages.oup.com).
- One eternal round: God's course begins and ends with Christ.
When Joseph Smith received the First Vision, some religions taught that God was angry and ready to send anyone into eternal damnation on a whim (see the show notes and transcript for Lesson 2: “I Saw a Pillar of Light” (Joseph Smith—History 1:1–26)).
Joseph’s mom Lucy wrote in her personal journal that she felt a sense of “a dark and lonesome chasm, between myself and the Savior” (Richard L. Bushman, Joseph Smith and the Beginnings of Mormonism, p. 36).
What Joseph Smith should/should not have done:
- Feared man more than God: (See Elder Lynn G. Robbins, "Which Way Do You Face?" October 2014 general conference).
8 Yet you should have been faithful; and he would have extended his arm and asupported you against all the fiery bdarts of the cadversary; and he would have been with you in every time of dtrouble (Doctrine and Covenants 3:7–8).
But what did God say to Joseph to give him hope?
10 But remember, God is merciful; therefore, repent of that which thou hast done which is contrary to the commandment which I gave you, and thou art still chosen, and art aagain called to the work; (Doctrine and Covenants 3:9–10).
Quote: “Surely the thing God enjoys most about being God is the thrill of being merciful, especially to those who don’t expect it and often feel they don’t deserve it.
“However late you think you are, however many chances you think you have missed, however many mistakes you feel you have made or talents you think you don’t have, or however far from home and family and God you feel you have traveled, I testify that you have not traveled beyond the reach of divine love. It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines” (Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, “The Laborers in the Vineyard," April 2012 general conference).
Title of Section 4: Called to Labor—Joseph Smith, Sr.
Doctrine and Covenants section 4 in Spanish:
Doctrine and Covenants section 4 in English:
- Cross reference: Leviticus 1:8–9
8 And the priests, Aaron’s sons, shall lay the parts, the head, and the fat, in order upon the wood that is on the fire which is upon the altar:
9 But his inwards and his legs shall he wash in water: and the apriest shall burn all on the altar, to be a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, of a bsweet savour unto the Lord.(Leviticus 1:8–9).
- Inwards = heart; head = mind; fat = might; legs = strength
- Called = invited or encouraged
(For the background of how the revelation for Doctrine and Covenants section 4 came about, see "Saints: The Story of the Church of Jesus Christ in the Latter Day, Vol. 1, "6: The Gift and Power of God," p. 56).
Qualifications for being called to the work:
- White field = harvest time
- Already = now
- Temperance = moderation or restraint (see www.merriam-webster.com)
Title of Section 5: Witness of the Book of Mormon—Martin Harris
(For background of why Martin asked to see the plates, see Saints: The Story of the Church of Jesus Christ in the Latter Day, Vol. 1, "6: The Gift and Power of God," p. 56–57).
1 Behold, I say unto you, that as my servant aMartin Harris has desired a witness at my hand, that you, my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., have got the plates of which you have testified and borne record that you have received of me; (Doctrine and Covenants 5:1).
Law of Witness:
Martin Harris Giving Joseph Smith $50:
Hoping to get his finances in order, Joseph went to town to settle some of his debts. While he was in a store making a payment, Martin Harris strode up to him. “Here, Mr. Smith, is fifty dollars,” he said. “I give it to you to do the Lord’s work" (Saints: The Story of the Church of Jesus Christ in the Latter Day, Vol. 1, "5: All Is Lost," p. 45).
Why Martin asked for a witness:
At this time, Martin had never seen the gold plates himself, although he had acted as a scribe for Joseph. After traveling to Joseph’s home, Martin expressed his desire to receive a further witness of the reality of the gold plates. He may have believed that if he could see the plates himself, he would be prepared to testify in court of their existence and clear his and Joseph Smith’s names of fraud. After Joseph listened to Martin’s request to see the plates, he inquired of the Lord and received the revelation in Doctrine and Covenants 5 (Doctrine and Covenants Seminary Teacher Manual, "Lesson 14: Doctrine and Covenants 5," ChurchofJesusChrist.org).
How God Answered Martin's Request:
2 And now, behold, this shall you say unto him—he who spake unto you, said unto you: I, the Lord, am God, and have given these things unto you, my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and have commanded you that you should stand as a awitness of these things;
3 And I have caused you that you should enter into a acovenant with me, that you should not bshow them except to those cpersons to whom I commanded you; and you have no dpower over them except I grant it unto you (Doctrine and Covenants 5:2–3).
Who Could Joseph Show the Plates To?
11 And in addition to your testimony, the atestimony of three of my servants, whom I shall call and ordain, unto whom I will show these things, and they shall go forth with my words that are given through you (Doctrine and Covenants 5:11).
16 And behold, whosoever abelieveth on my words, them will I bvisit with the cmanifestation of my dSpirit; and they shall be eborn of me, even of water and of the Spirit (Doctrine and Covenants 5:16).
Quote: "Signs are not given to produce faith but to confirm faith and to bless the faithful," (see "Signs," ChurchofJesusChrist.org).
Conditions Martin had to Meet to Receive a Witness:
24 Behold, I say unto him, he exalts himself and does not ahumble himself sufficiently before me; but if he will bbow down before me, and humble himself in mighty cprayer and faith, in the dsincerity of his heart, then will I grant unto him a eview of the things which he desires to see.
25 And then he shall say unto the people of this generation: Behold, I have seen the things which the Lord hath shown unto Joseph Smith, Jun., and I aknow of a surety that they are true, for I have seen them, for they have been shown unto me by the power of God and not of man.
26 And I the Lord command him, my servant Martin Harris, that he shall say no more unto them concerning these things, except he shall say: I have seen them, and they have been shown unto me by the power of God; and these are the words which he shall say.
28 And now, except he humble himself and acknowledge unto me the things that he has done which are wrong, and covenant with me that he will keep my commandments, and exercise afaith in me, behold, I say unto him, he shall have no such views, for I will grant unto him no views of the things of which I have spoken.
29 And if this be the case, I command you, my servant Joseph, that you shall say unto him, that he shall do no more, nor trouble me any more concerning this matter (Doctrine and Covenants 5:24–25).
32 And now, because I foresee the lying in wait to destroy thee, yea, I foresee that if my servant Martin Harris humbleth not himself and receive a witness from my hand, that he will fall into atransgression; (Doctrine and Covenants 5:32).
- Receive a witness from my hand = simple witness
Story of Naaman and his simple witness: 2 Kings 5
- Lifted up: exalted or rapture (see Doctrine and Covenants 88).
Quote: “Our witness of Christ typically begins with the testimony of others—people we know or know about and trust“ (Elder D. Todd Christofferson, "Becoming a Witness of Christ," Ensign, March 2008).
Quote: “We have the special witnesses of our own time who live among us and from whom, with our own eyes and ears, we receive a confirming testimony. Many are further blessed to hear the testimonies of parents, grandparents, and faithful friends. It is a spiritual gift to believe the words of others and a further gift “given by the Holy Ghost to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that he was crucified for the sins of the world” (D&C 46:13). This witness often comes in feelings—a burning, a peace, a feeling of assurance, a sense of enlightenment ”(Elder D. Todd Christofferson, "Becoming a Witness of Christ," Ensign, March 2008).
0:00:00.0 Tammy Uzelac Hall: When I was a little girl, the worst form of punishment, I mean the absolute worst was the thought of disappointing my parents. You could spank me, ground me, you can even take away a privilege, I'd be like, "Meh, what's that to me?" But if I even heard in their tone the slightest hint of, "We're so disappointed in you", from my parents, my world was crushed. I'm the oldest, so I'm naturally a pleaser. And I kind of think that after studying Doctrine and Covenants chapters three through five, I think that maybe Joseph Smith may share in my same sentiments.
0:00:32.6 TH: Welcome to the "Sunday on Monday" study group, a Deseret 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. Now, if you're new to our podcast, welcome. Oh my gosh, we're so glad that you're here. Now, make sure that you check out the link in the description of this episode that explains how to use this podcast for your "Come, Follow Me" study. And if you're like my friend Megan Gubler, she uses it really late at night during what she calls her long lonely nights when she can't sleep because she has an 11-month-old. That's why I'm whispering. Hi, Megan.
0:01:06.3 TH: Now, my favorite thing about this podcast is I get to have friends come on, and my friends joining me today are Amy Hutchins Whitmore and Sue Hunsaker-Cutler. Hi, friends!
0:01:18.4 SC: Hi!
0:01:18.9 AW: Hello!
0:01:19.4 TH: This is the best part of the podcast. Am I right?
0:01:20.8 SC: Oh, for sure. This is so much fun.
0:01:23.2 AW: Love it.
0:01:24.2 TH: I love having my friends. Okay, so Sue, oh boy, this is so fun. Sue's new, but not a new friend. We just finally got her on the podcast. And I met Sue through Amy, so Ame, tell us how you and Sue met.
0:01:36.0 AW: Oh, Sue and I met working together at Zuka Juice 100 years ago. Zuka Juice started in Provo and actually ended up selling to Jamba Juice. So Sue and I both went to Jamba Juice and were there for years and got to travel together, and we had so much fun. There was way too much laughing going on, I tell you.
0:02:01.2 AW: It's good time.
0:02:01.8 TH: I believe it.
0:02:04.0 AW: And cried.
0:02:04.1 SC: And cried.
0:02:04.6 AW: We could have these crazy, silly, funny moments, and the next moment, be bearing our testimonies at work, which was kinda cool.
0:02:10.9 SC: Yeah. It was amazing.
0:02:13.2 TH: And we were all single together and got married later so.
0:02:15.8 AW: Later in life. Yeah.
0:02:17.4 SC: We were. Yup. Absolutely. Yeah.
0:02:17.5 TH: And then we all had girls. How about that?
0:02:19.9 SC: I know.
0:02:21.1 AW: Oh my gosh. We do!
0:02:21.8 SC: All of us. All girls, no boys.
0:02:25.2 TH: Ame's got the one, James.
0:02:27.0 AW: I got my special boy.
0:02:28.4 SC: Yeah, you do, for sure.
0:02:29.5 AW: My good boy.
0:02:31.4 TH: Yeah. I'm just so happy to have you two here 'cause I just love these women so much and they have so much to share. So we're gonna have so much... I keep saying so much, but I just can't stop saying it 'cause we're gonna have so much fun.
0:02:41.3 AW: So much.
0:02:42.1 TH: So much. So much.
0:02:42.6 AW: I love it, I love it.
0:02:44.3 TH: You can find pictures and more information about our study group participants every week in our show notes, which are at ldsliving.com/sundayonmonday, so go there and check it out, see cute pictures of their family and their cute girls. So Doctrine and Covenants...
0:02:57.1 AW: And boy.
0:02:57.2 TH: Oh yeah, and their son.
0:03:00.8 AW: Yes. And the boy.
0:03:00.9 TH: Alright. Now, last week, we talked about Doctrine and Covenants section 2, and I gotta tell you, for me, Doctrine and Covenants section 2 is sort of like what I call the "Testing, testing, one, two, three, is this thing on?" for revelation. It was put in 'cause it actually was from the visit from Moroni, but Doctrine and Covenants 3 is the first actual revelation recorded and is what I believe to be the most important revelation recorded, because without this section, I don't think that any of the other revelations would exist, and I cannot wait to show you why. So friends, grab your scriptures and let's dig in.
0:03:34.5 TH: Okay, ladies, I'm just curious to know, think back to your childhood, when you were kids, did either of you ever do something that after you did it, you were like, "Uh-oh, I'm in so much trouble"?
0:03:48.6 AW: Well of course, there was the time. So we had six kids, and at this particular time didn't have a lot of money, and I finally got a non-hand-me-down. It was a coat. I'd waited for it my whole life, it was a rainbow, it was like navy blue with a rainbow across it and the sleeves zipped off, I loved my rainbow coat.
0:04:06.4 SC: I always wanted one of those.
0:04:08.3 AW: Well, I got one, and I could not have been more excited. And so I got it. My parents went on a date the first time I bought it, I zipped those sleeves off as soon as they were gone, and I put them on as leg warmers. And so I had my rainbow leg warmers and my vest, and that was awesome, and I fell asleep like I often did on a Friday night, in front of a heater, like a space heater, so I could watch cartoons Saturday morning, of course. But apparently, I got a little swelling in the middle of the night, and when I woke up in the morning and I wanted to take my leggings off, my leg warmers off, I couldn't take them off. My little chubby ankles were swollen. I couldn't get it off. And I was like claustrophobic, I'm like, "I have to get my leg warmers off or they'll never come off. I gotta get them off... "
0:04:52.1 AW: "Everybody's asleep, I gotta get them off." And I cut them off. I cut it. And I was careful how I cut it. When I cut the elastic, I just cut, cut, cut. And then I went up to my mom's room 'cause I'm so dead. I mean, this was special. And I said, "Mom, I cut my jacket." "You what?" "I cut my jacket." "Why would you cut your jacket?" "I couldn't get my legs... " "You mean you put them on your legs... "
0:05:22.7 AW: "We can't afford a new jacket. You're never gonna have a new jacket... " "Mom, we can sew it." "We can't sew it!" Anyway, it was horrible. It was awful.
0:05:28.3 TH: Busted. [laughter]
0:05:29.6 AW: True. I still feel sick about it. [laughter]
0:05:34.3 TH: I love that story so much.
0:05:36.6 AW: It's such a sad story but...
0:05:37.8 SC: So funny.
0:05:37.9 AW: It's a true story and it's mine and I own it.
0:05:41.5 TH: That's awesome. I love it so... Nothing pales in comparison to that one.
0:05:49.7 AW: Well, there's eating all the Girl Scout cookies and having $300 bill... that you couldn't pay...
0:05:54.8 TH: Oh that's a true story...
0:05:56.1 AW: But we won't get into that. That's a story for another day.
0:05:58.7 SC: That's my story, too!
0:05:58.8 TH: I did. I got kicked out of the Girl Scouts... [chuckle] I did, I got kicked out of the Girl Scouts 'cause I sold the most Girl Scout cookies and I ate the most Girl Scout cookies. My siblings and I broke into boxes, ate them, and sealed the boxes back shut, and we went to deliver the cookies to people, and they're like, "Where are the cookies?"
0:06:15.4 AW: Well they're very thin mints, they're very thin.
0:06:18.0 TH: I got in so much trouble. I can't believe how many boxes we ate. Totally got kicked out. And I tried to join the 4-H club down the street, I got in, and then they found out what I did and they're like, "You're out."
0:06:29.2 AW: Is that true?
0:06:29.3 SC: You were on the banned list.
0:06:31.4 TH: I was, I totally was. I got blacklisted in Sandy, Utah, for many organizations. And I only joined the Girls Scouts 'cause they had brownies, they had a tree bucket every Friday.
0:06:41.9 TH: I just wanted the treats.
0:06:44.6 AW: Make new friends and keep the old.
0:06:46.2 TH: Yeah, I was in so much trouble, so much trouble. Sorry. Oh my gosh, that's such a good story. Sue, do you have one?
0:06:51.1 SC: The story that came to my mind is when I was just little. My parents were gone, my two older brothers were babysitting me, and they decided to go outside... So I'm like four, three or four, they decided to go outside, go into the window wells and start knocking on the windows to scare me. So I'm down there and they're knocking and making weird noises, scaring me so bad, they came back in and I was so mad that I was painting my fingernail polish with my bright red fingernail polish, as a four-year-old, and I threw it at them, and it hit the fire place, and shattered everywhere, and got all over those... You remember the encyclopedias, the red and white ones that we had when we were kids?
0:07:35.5 AW: Britannicas?
0:07:35.6 TH: Encyclopaedia Britannica.
0:07:36.2 SC: Yeah, but like the children's ones, they were all over the encyclopedias.
0:07:39.9 TH: Oh busted.
0:07:41.1 SC: And as soon as I did that, I went... But I didn't get in trouble, my brothers did, so that was the good part of the story. But...
0:07:49.6 TH: Oh well. That's the good part.
0:07:50.2 SC: But as soon as I did that, I knew, oh, I am in trouble.
0:07:52.9 TH: Yeah.
0:07:53.6 SC: For sure.
0:07:54.5 TH: Okay, these stories are so perfect because I think the feeling of being in trouble is something that Joseph Smith experienced with this section. So let's turn to Doctrine and Covenants section 3, and we're gonna read about it. So section 3 has a title, and I've told you before, we're gonna label every section. So the label or the title for section 3 is called "Lost Manuscript." Now, here's a little bit of history about this. We talked about Martin Harris last time we met, and his wife Lucy, she's just becoming really concerned about Martin's interest and his financial interest that he's put into all of these plates, and just this whole experience with Joseph Smith, and so she's pretty bugged at Martin about it, and she actually gets others on her side, and they start to press Martin for evidence of the plates' existence. So to just appease the concerns of them, in mid-June, Martin requests that Joseph allow him to take the 116 pages of the manuscript to just go show to these people, and to say, "Okay," and then that will make them all feel a little bit better about what we're doing. Well, Joseph goes to the Lord and three times he prays.
0:08:57.6 TH: Two times, the Lord's like, "No, we can't do it." So on the third time, he prays, the Lord's like, "Okay, let him take the 116 pages, but he has to make a promise." Go to section 3 verse 13. We're gonna mark this verse. And verse 13, something specific in this verse where it says, "Who has set at naught the counsels of God, and has broken the most sacred promises," highlight "sacred promises" because the promise that Martin Harris made, he made a covenant with Joseph that he would only show the 116 pages to his wife, his brother, his parents, and Lucy's sister. That's what the sacred promises are, and I wrote that above it, promised to only show the 116 pages to his brother, his wife, his parents, and his wife's sister, who was Mrs. Cobb, if you wanna just have her name right there.
0:09:46.7 TH: Okay, so shortly after Martin left, Emma gives birth to a son named Alvin and Alvin dies in childbirth, and Emma almost dies in childbirth. So Joseph then will spend the next two weeks taking care of Emma and being by her side. Now, by this time, Martin had been gone for three weeks and they have heard nothing from him, and they are devastated. Joseph's like talking to Emma about this and Emma says, "You need to go find Martin Harris."
0:10:09.2 TH: And so Joseph leaves Emma and he goes to his parents' home and he sits down and he talks to them and they said, "Well, let's invite Martin over for breakfast," and they knew him to be a very prompt man, so they sent a message to join them for breakfast at 8 o'clock in the morning. Well, the next day, 8 o'clock came, no Martin. Then 9 o'clock, 10 o'clock, 11 o'clock, still wasn't there. And Joseph is now becoming so worried and nervous. At 12:30, they see this man slowly walking towards the house and he's looking down on the ground. He comes to the gate of the home and he stops there. Instead of walking through the gate, he sits on the fence, and he just sits there with his hat drawn over his eyes. That's the account that Lucy Smith tells us about. He finally comes into the house to join them for breakfast and he sits at the table, he tries to eat something and he can't. And Hyrum says to him, "What's your problem? Are you not hungry? Are you sick to your stomach? What's going on?" And then we have one of the most incredible accounts of this experience. And so I want...
0:11:05.7 TH: I asked Sue to read this for us, it's sort of... We're gonna have a reader's theater. So everyone just sit back and get comfortable because you can't even sum up this story, you have to read every word of this. And this is shared by Lucy Mack-Smith in the history of Joseph Smith by his mother. So she's gonna just read for us this story, it's so good.
0:11:24.7 SC: Joseph, who had not expressed his fears 'til now, spring from the table explaining, "Martin, have you lost that manuscript? Have you broken your oath and brought down condemnation upon my head as well as your own?" "Yes, it is gone," replied Martin, "and I know not where." Said Joseph, "All is lost, all is lost. What shall I do? I have sinned. It is I who tempted the wrath of God. I should have been satisfied with the first answer which I received from the Lord, for he told me that it was not safe to let the writing go out of my possession." He wept and groaned and walked the floor continually. At length he told Martin to go back and search again. "No," said Martin, "it is all in vain. I have ripped open beds and pillows looking for the manuscript. I know it's not there." "Then must I," said Joseph, "return with such a tale as this? I dare not do it. And how shall I appear before the Lord? Of what rebuke am I not worthy from the angel of the most high?" The next morning he set out for home. We parted with heavy hearts, where it now appeared that all which we had so fondly anticipated and which had been the source of so much secret gratification, had in a moment, fled and fled forever.
0:12:45.7 TH: Thank you. What can you feel about Joseph as you read those words?
0:12:51.8 SC: Well, as I was reading them, I just thought, "Oh, he's just heartbroken and so sad and had so much remorse," 'cause he knew he had done something wrong.
0:13:04.6 TH: Yeah.
0:13:05.9 AW: Oh, I just imagine how sick he felt, how Joseph must have just been like, "I knew it, I knew I shouldn't have done it. Oh I can't believe it!"
0:13:18.5 SC: You can't hide anything from the Lord, the Lord already knew. [chuckle] And when he says, "And must I return with such a tale of this?" it hurts. He's just thinking, "And I have to go back to the Lord and tell him what I did?"
0:13:34.9 TH: Yeah. Yeah, no, thanks. It's heart-wrenching. So as a result of this, Moroni is actually gonna come to him and take the Urim and Thummim away and he loses the gift to translate. And that's just so heartbreaking, too. He is so sad. He was, however, allowed to get section 3 of the Doctrine and Covenants, and I want us to read these specific verses in this revelation. Let's go to Doctrine and Covenants section 3, and it's just verses one through three. Amy, will you read one through three? And as Amy reads this, I want you to be thinking what these three verses teach us about God.
0:14:08.1 AW: The works, and the designs, and the purposes of God cannot be frustrated, neither can they come to naught. For God doth not walk in crooked paths, neither doth he turn to the right hand nor to the left, neither doth he vary from that which he hath said, therefore his paths are straight, and his course is one eternal round. Remember, remember that it is not the work of God that is frustrated, but the work of men.
0:14:36.6 TH: Thank you. What does that teach us about God?
0:14:40.2 SC: I loved it. I loved those scriptures because what it taught me is that he basically... The Lord was basically saying, "Joseph, if you mess up, the work is still gonna happen. No one's going to stop it because my work will continuously happen." I looked up what the word frustrated, like I know what frustrated means, but I looked it up and it said "prevent from progressing" or "prevent from being fulfilled".
0:15:09.8 TH: I'm so glad you brought that up.
0:15:11.6 SC: I kind of loved that...
0:15:12.7 TH: Highlight it and mark it, those of you listening. That's so good, Sue.
0:15:16.1 SC: Yeah, I loved that.
0:15:17.8 TH: And playing off of that, where it says, "For God doth not walk in crooked paths," I love this because basically the meaning of that is, he's never surprised. He doesn't go, "Oh, I guess we're taking a right here," "Oh, it looks like we're going left here," "Oops, there's a roadblock." No, his ways are consistently straight all the time, he has prepared a way to do everything he needs to do with the most imperfect of us who do walk in crooked paths. We're all over the place, but his work isn't. And so he'll use whoever along that path in any way he can. I just loved that.
0:15:49.0 SC: Hey Tam...
0:15:51.7 TH: Yes?
0:15:52.3 SC: So I was thinking one of the things that I loved about these scriptures also is that the Lord knew that Joseph was going to make a mistake, transgress, and he basically said, "You know what, you have your agency, but my work is not gonna stop from progressing."
0:16:10.2 TH: Yes.
0:16:10.3 SC: And I loved that. And I thought for myself, as you were talking about how the Lord's path is going down, am I on that path getting opportunities, or have I transgressed so I'm not giving those opportunities? Am I gonna be on that path to help the work progress, or am I not? Because the work is gonna happen no matter what, and I just hope I'm on that path to be the person to help rather than let somebody else do it.
0:16:42.3 TH: Oh, Sue, I like that because look at the end of verse two, it says, "And his course is one eternal round." And what's so beautiful about that phrase is it means his course starts and ends with Christ. And I kind of think of me in my own life. I think as long as we start and end with Christ, we're doing okay. I just think of me like, "Will my life end with Christ? Boy, I hope it does." And I think that's what he's trying to teach us. But yes, I've definitely had a crooked path, for sure.
0:17:09.3 SC: For sure.
0:17:10.8 TH: And but I think it smooths out and straightens out with Christ. Yeah, good, I love that. Great input, Sue. Thank you for sharing that.
0:17:19.4 AW: A couple of months ago, I read the book "Saints". Okay, I didn't read it, I listened to it.
0:17:25.8 TH: Sure.
0:17:25.9 AW: But as I was reading this part in particular, first of all, as Martin Harris's wife, I would have been the same way, even if I had a ton of faith and kind of believe, I would have been like, "I need to see 'em and you need to tell Joseph that I need to see 'em. If we're gonna give our money... " I probably said this to my husband before, "If I'm gonna... I'm gonna need to see it, okay." So that's the bottomline. So I can see why he would do that. But what I kept feeling was, they're just men and I felt so sad. I felt like so much was given to these men, so much responsibility. And I'm like, Joseph Smith was still just a young guy, and...
0:18:04.6 TH: Oh, so young, in his 20s.
0:18:06.6 AW: Oh my gosh and he gets these reprimands? I get in trouble for something I do, and usually it's myself giving myself trouble, but it's overwhelming. So the thought of him being told like some of these things that he's told, it was heartbreaking for me. I was weeping as I read it. I'm like, "This is too much. You're gonna take away the Urim and Thummim? You're gonna take away my iPhone?"
0:18:31.8 TH: You're gonna lose the gift?
0:18:33.2 AW: It's like... It was... It was almost more than I could handle.
0:18:37.5 TH: Yes.
0:18:39.8 AW: So that's the part that I'm still trying to figure out, like how come so much have been put on him?
0:18:45.1 TH: I love that you pointed that out, Amy. It was a lot. And to think that he included it in here, 'cause then there's the human in me, and I've said this before, I'd be like, "We don't really need section 3, let's just skip over that part."
0:18:56.6 AW: Totally. We're gonna nix this one and the next one. If I'm Martin Harris, I'd be like, "Come on, don't tell anybody."
0:19:03.1 TH: "Can you not include that please? Let's just skip to the part where I was a witness."
0:19:06.9 AW: Sure, sure, sure.
0:19:10.6 TH: I love this discussion because it leads us right into the next segment where we are gonna discover, and I just love this, we're gonna discover how the Lord handled Joseph's feeling of being in trouble, and we'll read some verses which teach a significant truth about the way our heavenly parents parent us.
0:19:43.5 TH: So here's my question for you guys. How were you taught repentance as a little child? And did you teach it the same way to your kids?
0:19:51.5 SC: I think I was taught repentance, like literally, I remember having footprints being cut out and that people were teaching me, "Okay, these are the seven steps of repentance," and going through that. Now that I'm older and understand about, repentance is about changing our behavior more than anything. It's not necessarily, "Okay, first it's this step and then you do this step." It's not like a checklist. But now it's more like, "Okay, this is the behavior that we have, how can we change this on a daily basis to be better?"
0:20:26.5 TH: Yeah, oh I like that. It's a great example, Sue, thanks.
0:20:30.7 AW: Yeah, I think I always thought of repentance as an event, how I was taught it. I remember at least feeling like every time I made a mistake as a child, Heavenly Father was sad. That's gonna make Heavenly Father so sad that you stole those candy bars.
0:20:46.6 AW: And so I imagined the Heavenly Father, this is true, that was sad all the time, 'cause I made a lot of mistakes. And I think I got to the point, even close to being a teenager, where I'm like, "He's so sad. [laughter] I'll take care of it all at once and then he won't be sad anymore."
0:21:03.8 TH: He's already sad, so what's the point?
0:21:05.6 AW: I wonder how sad this would make him? I teach my children differently. Just recently, one of my girls came to me and was like, "I have to tell you the truth," and I'm like, "I already knew, honey. It's okay." "You knew?" Yeah. And we just talk about how our mistakes really affect us, but more that repentance is just an ongoing lifetime process and we're always gonna be doing it, and that I use repentance every day, many times a day.
0:21:35.5 TH: Oh wow.
0:21:36.9 AW: That it's not this big event that you go and you sit down in a bishop's office, which I kind of always viewed it that way. It's just a daily process.
0:21:45.4 TH: Amy, I like the part where you said that, "I have to use it every day." I mean, to have our kids know that, that we repent every day, that changes the way they view it. It just makes it normal. I like that.
0:21:55.0 AW: Oh it does. My daughter said, "Well, what do you do?" I'm like, "That's private." [laughter]
0:22:02.8 TH: "What did you do, Mom?" [laughter]
0:22:02.8 AW: I know.
0:22:06.6 SC: I remember thinking when I was young, as soon as I got married, I won't need to repent anymore. And I don't...
0:22:08.0 AW: Totally!
0:22:12.4 AW: That tells us about your past, Sue. [laughter]
0:22:14.5 TH: TMI.
0:22:16.2 SC: But I just thought, once you're married and an adult, you don't need to repent.
0:22:19.8 AW: Totally.
0:22:20.3 TH: Right.
0:22:21.3 SC: And now that I'm adult, I'm like, "Oh, it is a life-long process. Every single day, we need to repent, we need to change to become better."
0:22:30.6 TH: Thank you for pointing that out. Those were such great examples. And the reason why I wanted to ask you that question is because I want us to see how the Savior teaches repentance to Joseph Smith and then to us in section 3. So this is so good. A little history behind this is, here's where Joseph Smith is coming from, and we learned this a couple of weeks ago from Anthony Sweat, he taught us that at this time, religion taught that you were completely, utterly unable to please God by even being obedient. You are constantly at the mercy of him. You always thought he hated you. And I like how Anthony Sweat taught us that you are like a little spider hanging by a thread, and God was waiting to just flick you into eternal damnation and fire at any moment. God was very scary to these people, so scary that at one point, Joseph's mom, Lucy, she wrote in her own personal journal that she felt a sense of a "dark and lonesome chasm" between herself and the Savior.
0:23:26.1 TH: She just didn't think he was approachable at all. So you have to know that going in, because Joseph is, of course, he's terrified because in his mind, he is dead, it's over, there's no hope for him at all. He'll never please God. So let's go to Doctrine and Covenants section 3 and read verse six. And Sue, can you read verse six for us? And after you do, Amy, I want you to sum this verse up in your own words.
0:23:49.2 SC: "And behold, how oft have you transgressed the commandments and the laws of God, and have gone on in the persuasions of men."
0:23:56.8 AW: Basically saying, like "How many times do I have to tell you?"
0:24:03.1 TH: Yes, that's exactly it.
0:24:05.8 AW: "How many times do you keep going after men? And I keep trying to tell you the right way to do it."
0:24:10.6 TH: I wrote that right next to it. I wrote out, "How many times... " How many times do you hear that as a parent? "How many times am I gonna have to tell you this?" So he's like, "How many times?" And then verses seven and eight, I put next to those verses the word "shoulds". We have the shoulds here. And these verses are fun, I'll read these. He says, "For, behold, you should not have feared man more than God. Although men set at naught the counsels of God, and despise his words, yet you should have been faithful; and he would have extended his arm and supported you against all the fiery darts of your adversary." That's a classic parenting tool right there. "You shouldn't have done this. What you should have done was this." Right? We can hear this, and I even hear this in my own voice as I parent my own kids.
0:24:53.2 TH: And then I love this message. So we're gonna mark verses nine and 10. And I think these are the two most critical verses in all the scripture, where I don't think we would have had any other revelations if it weren't for these two verses. So Ame, will you read just verse nine and we're gonna mark something in it?
0:25:07.3 AW: "Behold, thou art Joseph, and thou wast chosen to do the work of the Lord, but because of transgression, if thou art not aware thou wilt fall."
0:25:17.7 TH: Okay. So let's highlight "Thou art Joseph," he knows his name, thou art Tammy, thou art Amy, thou art Sue, and then highlight, "And thou wast chosen," because it kind of leaves you hanging, like you were chosen, and then I love verse 10. Amy, read verse 10 for us.
0:25:34.0 AW: "But remember, God is merciful; therefore, repent of that which thou hast done which is contrary to the commandment which I gave you, and thou art still chosen, and art again called to the work."
0:25:49.9 TH: That last line, wow! The idea where he just goes, "And you know what, you're still chosen. You got this."
0:26:00.0 SC: Right? I love that, I love that he started out and said, "You know what, you're chosen. And then you transgressed, and then you need to repent, but you're still chosen." And it wasn't like the repent was, "Okay, you need to do all this and this and this," it's "You're still chosen, you are still... You're my guy. I still want you to do my work."
0:26:21.0 TH: Well, and what does that tell us about God and Jesus Christ and our heavenly parents when it comes to parenting about repentance?
0:26:28.4 SC: Is that he will always love us. We're always chosen. And I think about that with my kids. There's nothing they could do that would make me not love them, and they will always be my chosen. And I know that's how our Heavenly Father feels about us, is that we are always his chosen.
0:26:50.2 TH: For me, when I read "thou art still chosen," it made me think, how many times do we get caught up in this idea that when a child sins or someone, we're like, "No, you'll never be as good as you could've been. You're gonna miss out on all these chances and you have all the blessings, and blah, blah, blah," and I love that, no, right here, Heavenly Father is like, "Yeah, you messed up. You should have done this, but you didn't."
0:27:12.9 TH: "And you were chosen, but you know what, I'm merciful. I got some good news for you. I love you, I'm right here. You're still chosen, Joseph. Now, come on. Let's get it together." And I just feel like this is Joseph's way to just go. "Alright." I think it's what allowed for Joseph to just move on and continue to receive revelations and organize The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, because of these two verses right here. "You're still chosen, you got this." It's like the best cheering, hurrah. I love those verses. 'Cause that's kind of God I believe and that's my God, like, "You're fine. Come on, you."
0:27:46.7 SC: Right, especially after he lost the pages and how horrible he must have been feeling, and then all of a sudden, he's like, "You're still chosen." Because I think for me, I would have thought, oh, I'd be giving up at that point.
0:28:02.4 TH: Well, and Joseph cried out, "All is lost, all is lost." He wasn't necessarily saying the 116 pages were lost, even though they were, he's talking about everything he was given. "It's over, all is lost. I'll never please God. It's done for." And I think there's a lot of kids who think that and we need to re-teach it, not all is lost. What? What are you talking about? Let's read this really cool quote by Elder Holland. Sue, will you read this for us?
0:28:25.6 SC: "Surely the thing God enjoys most about being God is the thrill of being merciful, especially to those who don't expect it and often feel they don't deserve it."
0:28:36.8 TH: Oh, I love the idea, the thrill of being merciful, that God would be thrilled about that.
0:28:43.8 SC: "However late you think you are, however many chances you think you have missed, however many mistakes you feel you have made or talents you think you don't have, or however far from home and family and God you feel you have traveled, I testify that you have not traveled beyond the reach of divine love. It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ's Atonement shines."
0:29:13.1 AW: It's never too late.
0:29:14.9 TH: Never.
0:29:16.4 SC: I love that. I love when the scriptures bring out how our Heavenly Father feels about us, how Jesus Christ feels about us.
0:29:26.8 TH: Yeah. And I go back to the Book of Mormon year, our last discussion, episode 49, where Moroni's challenge, he challenges you not only to pray about the Book of Mormon, but he challenges you to pray about God's mercy, that you need to know God is merciful. And then here we have it, Doctrine and Covenants 3:10, "But remember, God is merciful. Thou art still chosen." It sums it up beautifully. It's one of the... It's the most important thing we need to remember about him, about our heavenly parents.
0:29:56.0 SC: So verse seven, it says, "For behold, you should not have feared man more than God." I thought about that, and there was a talk by Elder Lynn G. Robbins of the Seventy, and it was called "Which Way Do You Face?" And he talks about, which way do we face? Do we face God or do we face man in all of our decisions? I can just physically imagine that and I thought, "You know what, how many times do we face man and how many times are we facing God in our daily decisions?"
0:30:34.5 TH: Well, Sue, I like that you brought that up because in this story, we see that shift, we see him no longer facing man, he decides he's going to face God. And in the next segment, we're gonna see the reality of the Lord's mercy and His forgiveness of facing towards God, because we continue on with more revelation. And Joseph received one of the most famous and most, I would say, most memorized of all the sections in the Doctrine and Covenants, and we'll go over that in the next segment.
0:31:08.3 TH: Okay, did you guys serve missions? I'm curious.
0:31:11.2 SC: Yes, I did. I went to Indiana, Indianapolis mission.
0:31:15.6 TH: Nice.
0:31:16.6 AW: Puerto Rico.
0:31:18.3 TH: Puerto Rico. [chuckle] Fresno, Fresno, California.
0:31:25.3 TH: Alright, did you guys have to memorize Doctrine and Covenants section 4 on your mission?
0:31:28.9 SC: Yes.
0:31:29.3 AW: Sure, I bet I still got it.
0:31:31.8 TH: Hit it.
0:31:32.3 AW: Okay, I can do it in Spanish.
0:31:34.5 TH: Alright, let's hear it. See what you got.
0:31:36.4 AW: It's long, but let me see what I got.
0:31:44.5 AW: You want me to keep going?
0:31:44.6 TH: Yeah.
0:32:06.8 AW: Oh my gosh.
0:32:16.5 AW: Oh boy. Well, let me hear yours. [laughter]
0:32:20.5 TH: Okay, that was impressive... You got all the way... No wait, you got to verse five. You only have one verse left.
0:32:27.1 AW: I got more, I just needed one word...
0:32:29.2 TH: Alright. Recuerdo.
0:32:36.5 TH: Woo-hoo! You nailed it!
0:32:37.5 SC: That was amazing.
0:32:38.8 AW: Still got it. That was awesome!
0:32:40.9 TH: Oh that's so good. Okay.
0:32:42.3 AW: There was a lot of pressure. [laughter]
0:32:45.2 TH: Amy, I want you to include in the show notes what Doctrine and Covenants section 4 looks like in your scriptures. The Puerto Rican flag.
0:32:50.8 SC: So cool, so cool.
0:32:52.1 AW: This page has... If you could really see it up close... You could see tears splatters... I'd be like, "I do have the desires. I got nothing else! And I'm hot... "
0:33:05.9 TH: This mission's so hard and it's so hot!
0:33:10.0 AW: It's so hot! I'm gonna die! And it kinda...
0:33:12.9 TH: Totally.
0:33:13.6 AW: Stinks in my bedroom and I have mosquito bites, but I'm called to the work.
0:33:19.7 TH: So we have Doctrine and Covenants section 4 which is the quintessential missionary scripture. And I think every missionary says it, we all memorize it, and we learn it. But we're gonna study this really iconic section today. And here's a couple of things that we need to know about it. So first of all, we're gonna label this one, "Call to Labor-Joseph Smith Senior". Okay, so Joseph Smith finally gets to Urim and Thummim and the plates back in September of 1828, but he did not start up with translation again because Martin was no longer able to be his scribe, 'cause he lost 116 pages, and Emma couldn't scribe because she was also healing from almost dying. So Joseph buys 13 acres from Emma's dad and he begins to farm and he had zero money, I mean they really were so poor. That was like... I just keep thinking of his whole story, how poor they were, because I don't know, in my mind, if he was a fallen prophet, he would have skimmed from the top, but he didn't, or I think why wouldn't God just make them rich so he could do the work?
0:34:14.1 AW: Can I get an amen?
0:34:15.9 SC: Right.
0:34:16.8 TH: So he has to stop the work...
0:34:18.2 SC: A little bit easier... Just a touch maybe.
0:34:19.6 TH: Just a little extra money, yeah.
0:34:20.7 SC: A couple thousand dollars. [laughter]
0:34:23.2 AW: Geez Louise.
0:34:23.3 TH: So he has no money to support his family. So in February of 1829 then Joseph Smith's parents come to visit Emma and Joseph, and while they're there, Joseph's dad, Joseph Smith Senior, says to Joseph, "What can I do? How can I help the work of God? Give me an assignment. How can I help you, son?" And Joseph goes to the Lord and he gets Doctrine and Covenants section 4. And so what is so cool about this is that it's always kind of been a missionary scripture, but Joseph Senior wasn't called on a mission. So that makes this verse for everybody, all members of the church. So we need to know that going into this. And now let's just focus on section 4 verses one and two. Ame, will you please read Doctrine and Covenants section 4:1-2? We're gonna break down these verses.
0:35:05.9 AW: Now behold, a marvelous work is about to come forth among the children of men. Therefore, O ye that embark in the service of God, see that ye serve him with all your heart, might, mind and strength, that ye may stand blameless before God at the last day."
0:35:21.0 TH: Perfect. In verse two, let's highlight the words "heart", "might", "mind", and "strength". Now, let's put a cross-reference next to this verse. Go ahead and write Leviticus, L-E-V...
0:35:34.3 AW: Oh dear. [chuckle]
0:35:34.4 TH: Yeah, just put L-E-V, Leviticus 1:8-9. There's a specific reason that the Lord says heart, might, mind and strength, and highlight those in verse two, we're gonna break these down to exactly what they mean. Leviticus is setting forth how to do, at the tabernacle, how you're going to do your offerings, and when you bring in animal, it's teaching us how to cut the animal up and what parts we're gonna use, and verses eight through nine in Leviticus tell us there are specific parts that are important to the animal in this sacrifice. And I'll read verses eight and nine. It says, "And the priests, Aaron's sons, shall lay the parts, the head and the fat in order upon the wood that is on the fire, which is upon the altar, but his inwards and his legs shall wash in water, and the priest shall burn on the altar to be burnt sacrifice, an offering made of fire of a sweet savor unto the Lord." So those parts listed in Leviticus 2, they're the same parts as in section 4, the head is the mind, the fat is the might, the inwards is the heart, and the legs are the strength. There they are, you guys.
0:36:44.5 TH: This is so cool because the law of sacrifice in the Old Testament is foreshadowing what we would later be asked to sacrifice of ourselves, and here it is, Doctrine and Covenants section 4, the Lord is telling us to serve with all of our heart, might, mind and strength. Let's label each one of those and write what this means. Because when you serve with all your heart, this word means your affections and your feelings. The word "might" is your willpower. I like that idea, just your reserve, your oomph. Then we have your mind, which I like this, according to one scholar, they said "This is your reason of faculty," so of course I've looked that up, but it basically means your inherent mental power, which everybody has. Everybody's got that, no matter if you think you're smart or not. I'm not good at the math, but I got some inherent mental power that I can use. And then your strength, which is your physical exertion, you're just... Yeah, you can do this. Okay, now I wanna go back to this first because it says, "Serve with all of your," and I wanna know what you think that means. What does it mean "all of your... "? 'Cause it kind of seems a little overwhelming.
0:37:51.5 AW: I just kind of interpret that as, I throw it in that bucket of like, you just do your best.
0:37:58.3 SC: Yeah, that's what I was thinking, too, is, that I think sometimes, when we're doing this and we're serving, you may not use all of them the same way, but you're just, like Amy said, you're just doing your best, you're giving it your all, but sometimes it may be... You may do more physical aspect, sometimes it's gonna be more of your emotion and your heart, and then sometimes it's gonna be your willpower, your might. I think it just depends and changes, but it comes back to, we're doing the best job and we're doing the best that we can do.
0:38:30.8 AW: Sometimes I think all you have is your... For me, is my heart. Like, I don't understand this, I don't know why, but I know it's right. So I'm just gonna put my heart in.
0:38:43.5 TH: Thank you, I love all of your insights about that, all your. Because I do, I think that... I don't think it means all four things at the exact same time, I think it's what you have and what you can give. So let's go in to verse 3 then, because here's something unique about this verse. Sue, can you read that for us?
0:39:00.2 SC: Sure. "Therefore, if you have desires to serve God ye are called to the work."
0:39:05.7 TH: Okay, now I want us to look at this because I love the idea, if you have a desire to serve God, then highlight the word "called," "ye are called to the work". This is not an actual mission call that we're talking about here, because remember, when this revelation was given, the church hadn't even been organized yet, there wasn't a priesthood, there were callings that were being given to people, so that word "called" means to be invited or encouraged. That's what it is. And so anyone who has desires to serve God, ye are invited and encouraged to do the work, and I think I like this because it applies to every single one of us.
0:39:44.6 AW: I love the word "desires" because sometimes that's all I have. I may not have everything that goes behind the action that needs to happen, but I have the desire, and I feel like with that desire, Heavenly Father helps me with the rest.
0:40:00.9 TH: Well Amy, I love that you said that, because if you have a desire according to this, then you are called. And so in the next segment, we're actually gonna discover some of the prerequisites for doing this kind of work.
0:40:19.3 TH: Okay, you guys, I wanna know what's the first job you ever had or maybe your craziest job, which is such a fun question to ask, by the way; parents listening, you should have this conversation with your kids 'cause I've got a kick out of some of the jobs, my kids can't even believe the jobs I've had in my life.
0:40:33.8 AW: KB Toys.
0:40:35.7 SC: KB Toys? My first job was, I was... My title was a party girl and I...
0:40:42.6 AW: You were?
0:40:42.9 SC: Yes. I worked at Utah State University in the catering for big banquets that they would have. I had the little red cummerbund, the little red bow tie, and I would serve... The Tupperware Convention was big up at Utah State, and so we'd serve all the Tupperware Convention people. That was my first job.
0:41:04.0 TH: Nice. You got a crazy job?
0:41:07.6 SC: My craziest job was probably when I went to school in Georgia for a year, University of Georgia, and the guy across our hall from our apartment convinced us to work at Arby's, and I worked at Arby's for three weeks, and after three weeks, I said, "Yeah, we're done," and that was it.
0:41:28.9 AW: I worked at KB Toys for an hour. It was Christmas time, I don't know, I was like a junior in high school. And I get there and they're like, "Okay, well, we don't have time to train you right now, so if you wanna go over to Aisle B where we have Hot Wheels and Han Solo action figures... " Okay. "And organize that." I'm all ADD, I took one look at that thing and I started putting red Hot Wheels with red, and about a half an hour in, I'm like, "I think I'm gonna be sick," and I never went back.
0:42:02.9 TH: I'm curious to know when either of you applied for these jobs, were there qualifications for the jobs?
0:42:07.2 AW: Nope.
0:42:09.2 TH: Just breathing, heartbeat.
0:42:10.9 SC: Yeah, there was a few qualifications. I guess, for the Arby's, I don't know, but for the party girl, we had to wear a uniform, we had to be there at certain times and look appropriate, as we were doing banquets and serving.
0:42:31.5 AW: Good personality.
0:42:33.0 SC: Yep, personality; had to have our hair pulled back, that was...
0:42:36.0 AW: Neat and tidy.
0:42:37.0 TH: There you go. There you go. Well, and then the older you get and the bigger jobs you get, the more qualifications there are. We've definitely seen that and learned that. Okay, well, let's jump back into section 4 because we're gonna read about the qualifications for the job of serving God, and here is what he is asking of us. So let's go to section 4 verse 4. There's a couple of things I want us to mark in this, I'll just read this, it says, "For behold, the field is white", highlight that. What that's telling us is the reason why it's white is because it's no longer green, and once the wheat turned white, that was time for the harvest to begin, that was the signal, so that's why he's saying the field is white, that means it really is all ready to harvest.
0:43:13.8 TH: And the word "all ready" means now, like right now, and I like that Joseph Smith is saying this to his dad, "Now is the time, here we go, we are getting ready to begin in this harvest," then it says, "And lo, he that trusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in store that perisheth not, but bringeth salvation to his soul." Now, here are the qualifications for work. So Sue, will you please read for us verse 5, and Ame, will you please read verse 6.
0:43:39.7 SC: "And faith, hope, charity and love, with an eye single to the glory of God qualify him for the work."
0:43:48.7 AW: "Remember faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility, diligence."
0:43:58.5 TH: Now, I asked you guys this question ahead of time 'cause it's a pretty loaded question, it's heavy, and I just wanted you to think, do you have a specific story or experience of the qualities that are listed right here? Do you have a story or experience that stands out to you where you saw this in action, any one of these words?
0:44:16.7 SC: So it has always been easy for me to love. I never had a problem with that. And then I went on a mission.
0:44:23.5 TH: I think that's true, I would agree.
0:44:23.6 AW: And then I went on a mission...
0:44:26.8 SC: And then I went on a mission...
0:44:26.9 TH: Oh sure.
0:44:27.9 SC: I was forced to love. And so I'd been out about a year and mid-transfer, I received a new companion, and this new companion of mine had only been in the mission field two weeks and she was having a really hard time, she was mentally struggling, spiritually, just really didn't want to be there. So she was mean. She was just flat out mean and unhappy to me. And a couple of days after we were companions, my mission president called and he said, "Sister Hunsaker, how are you doing?" And I said, "It's hard. This is a hard situation," and he said, "You need to know that the Lord revealed to me that you two are to be companions."
0:45:09.6 SC: And so I took... Serve with all your heart, might, mind and strength, and I took that and said, okay. And so I start serving her. Basically, I used all of the words in verse five and six, all the words, and I loved her, I had charity for her, I had faith that this was what I was supposed to do, and so we had been together about five weeks, and all of a sudden, I realized, you know what, I love this companion of mine, and we got along, we had great talks, and my heart had changed, her heart had changed, and it was such a great experience.
0:45:56.3 SC: Plot twist on this story, it goes on, because I did see how serving her changed my heart and her heart, and there was so much love. Well, we were together about two and a half months and she was transferred and she got transferred to one of my former companions. About three days after the transfer, my former companion called me and she said, "Hey, I thought you and this sister got along. What's going on?" And I said, "I don't know, what's up?" She said, "All she can talk about is how horrible of a person you are," she said, "All she says is you were disobedient, you were cruel, you were mean. And that she has never known a more unlike-Christ-like person than you, and she even compares you to Satan."
0:46:54.0 AW: Oh my, Sue!
0:46:55.0 TH: What?
0:46:56.5 SC: I know, and I tell you, I got off the phone that night and cried and cried and cried. Because never in my life have I worked so hard to love somebody, 'cause it'd always been easy, and I loved and I did so much, and it just hurt so bad. So that night, I'm kneeling on my knees and I had a greenie, I had a new missionary been out for three days, and she's just looking at me going, "Why is she crying?" And I'm on my knees just pouring out my soul to my Heavenly Father saying, "I gave so much and this just hurts," I'm still on my knees crying, and all of a sudden, the phone rang, and it's about 11 o'clock at night, and I go and answer the phone, and it was the assistants to the president, the elders. And they said, "Sister Hunsaker, we just finished our companion prayer tonight, and as soon as we said 'Amen', we both felt impressed that we needed to call you and tell you that the Lord is aware of you and the Lord loves you."
0:48:03.6 SC: I doubted them for a minute and I said, "Did you talk to my companion?" And they said, "We have no idea what you're talking about. We both knew we were to call you and tell you the Lord knows you and loves you." That experience has meant so much to me because it has made such a foundational testimony for me that my Lord loves me, and it all started by me serving my companion, and I am so grateful for that process that I went through.
0:48:39.9 TH: Oh Sue.
0:48:40.0 AW: So sweet.
0:48:40.1 TH: That is such a good story. Thank you for sharing that. That was so sweet. I loved that.
0:48:49.1 AW: I read these over and over, and I thought... I could think of so many people and so many experiences, but it kept coming back to one person, and it was my mom and motherhood. I read these things, and faith, hope, charity, love with an eye single to the glory of God. That's my mom. I think back to the very beginning where it says, if you have a desire, you're called to the work, she had a desire. She has a desire to be the best mom she can be, and she truly does remember faith and virtue, knowledge, temperance, all of these things, she is the best example to me in my life, of these characteristics, these skills, these requirements.
0:49:33.2 TH: Oh my gosh, Amy, I just had a real lightbulb moment when you just shared that because you're totally right. The work doesn't necessarily mean missionary work all the time, it can be motherhood or whatever phase of work that you're in in your life right now. Boy, and I gotta tell you, the work of being a step-mom and being a mom in general, boy, does it require everything in section 4. And I think I'm like, "Did I have a desire to serve God? And I was called to that work?" Wow, that is tough. I don't even know where I'm going with this.
0:50:04.5 AW: Sometimes that's all I've hung on is my desire, in mothering, especially as a step-mom. This year, my word has been 'temperance,' I still don't even get what that means exactly, but...
0:50:18.2 SC: Hey, I looked that word up.
0:50:19.6 AW: Oh, tell me, Sue.
0:50:20.7 SC: 'Cause I wasn't sure what it meant either, and it says moderation or restrain.
0:50:28.0 AW: I'm gonna have it be my word in 2022 or 2021. Whatever year's next.
0:50:33.0 SC: But I guess, it means just to have temperance in things, to have moderation in things, I guess, I don't know. To restrain yourself...
0:50:39.5 TH: That's exactly what it means. Yeah. Just to be even-keeled.
0:50:43.2 SC: I mean, with my companion, I felt like when I said I did all the words, I really felt like I had to have temperance, I had to have faith that this was the right thing I was supposed to be doing, and charity. I look back on that situation and think I have never... To that point in my life, had a pure love of God. And she actually was a sweet person, it's just, she was going through a hard time, and it's hard to be happy when you personally are struggling.
0:51:11.0 AW: Yeah, for sure.
0:51:13.9 TH: I'm thinking of the verse 6 and just the order of these words, isn't it interesting, it first starts with faith? Then we know that virtue means power, power through covenants, and then you have this knowledge; when you have that knowledge, it's easier to be a little more temperate, a little more evenly keeled, like I just think of any of the words, any order they could have gone in... Isn't it interesting that diligence is last? Why didn't we start out with diligence? I just think that's... Of course, that's the last word, and above all, just keep being diligent.
0:51:42.0 AW: Keep coming back to it, keep working hard.
0:51:44.9 TH: Yeah, okay, be patient, have brotherly kindness, sure. Godliness, that means to be like God, have heavenly qualities, which is a lifetime pursuit; charity. And it's interesting 'cause in verse 5, it says, charity and love, then humility. Alright. And then we got... But then be diligent, hang on, hang in there, it's gonna work out. Oh, and then you have the last verse, "Ask and ye shall receive. Knock and it shall be opened unto you." Amen. This idea, not only asking how to do the work, but you can ask for any of those qualities, that's what it's asking you to ask to ask. Of all those qualities, which one would you wanna ask for? I love how, Amy, you said your word for the year was temperance. That's great, you're asking for that and making it your word.
0:52:28.9 AW: Gotta work on that. Well, here's the thing about verse 7, to me, "Ask and ye shall receive, knock and it shall be opened to you." I have to always remind myself that, that's not an instant thing. Knocking, you knock on the door, someone answers usually. These things take time. I had my eight-year-old say, "I pray, mom, and my... I don't always get my answer," no, she didn't say, "I don't always get my answer," she said, "I never get any answers." And I was like, oh. I think it's because our expectation is that it's as easy as knocking and receiving, and these things take time.
0:53:05.2 SC: I think sometimes it's hard for me to be the humble, because I think I don't need to ask because I can just do it on my own. A lot of times, like verse 7, "Ask and you shall receive," is, am I asking? Or am I just thinking, "Okay, I can just do this. I don't wanna bother Heavenly Father"?
0:53:26.9 AW: I'll just figure it out.
0:53:29.4 SC: Yep, I'll just figure it out. Did you notice that in verse 5, and in verse 6, both have faith, and verse five and six both have charity. So why would it be repeated? Does it mean we need to have those more than the other ones? But why would it be repeated twice?
0:53:46.1 TH: That's some great insight. The idea of things being repeated is so important, it adds emphasis to it, that those must be very important, you cannot do the work without faith, without charity.
0:54:00.6 SC: Faith. Right, that's kind of what I thought is... Because those two characteristics are mentioned twice, it's not a mistake, it's not a typo, it's there because they are so important for us to have.
0:54:14.5 TH: Wow, thanks for pointing that out. Well, this is neat because after this revelation is given, so Joseph, he's gonna slowly start to translate with Emma as his scribe, until Oliver Cowdery comes along, and it will be two more months until he comes. So meanwhile, eight months have now passed since Martin lost the 116 pages, and then he comes back to Joseph Smith to ask him something. We're gonna find out what that something is in the next segment.
0:54:49.2 TH: Okay, Sue and Amy, do either of you guys, do you guys have a bucket list?
0:54:54.0 SC: Absolutely, I have a bucket list. Travel the world, that's on my bucket list.
0:55:01.3 AW: Lose weight. That's always on my bucket list.
0:55:06.2 TH: It's always lose weight.
0:55:06.3 SC: I'm just adding to my bucket each and every day.
0:55:09.2 TH: A bucket so full.
0:55:09.8 AW: The pounds this year. My bucket runneth over.
0:55:14.4 SC: It's the COVID-19...
0:55:15.0 TH: It is, whatever. Well, hey, think of your bucket list, 'cause I'm wondering, is there something on that list, something specific though, that you've heard about or read about, that you're just dying to see in person?
0:55:27.5 SC: Mine is Italy, I really wanna go to Italy.
0:55:29.7 AW: Mine, too!
0:55:32.3 SC: Let's go together.
0:55:32.4 AW: Okay.
0:55:35.3 TH: Italy it is.
0:55:36.0 AW: Whether in this life or the next.
0:55:36.7 SC: That's right.
0:55:40.2 TH: Absolutely. Mine's Israel. The Wailing Wall, I gotta see the Wailing Wall, I know, I haven't been, whatever, I'm gonna get there some day. Well, here's the reason I ask that, because let's go to Doctrine and Covenants section 5, and we're gonna read verse 1. Now, here's what I want us to do, I'm gonna read verse 1 out loud, and as I read this, what I want you guys to look for and mark is what... Possibly, Martin Harris, I think we can probably apply this. What was on his bucket list? What did he wanna see in person and what did he want to do? Okay? So I'm gonna read verse 1, here we go.
0:56:10.8 TH: Behold, I say unto you, that as my servant Martin Harris has desired a witness at my hand, that you, my servant Joseph Smith, Jr., have got the plates of which you have testified and borne record that you have received of me."
0:56:24.4 SC: He wants to see those plates.
0:56:26.6 TH: Yes, 100%. He wants to see the plates and he wants to be a what?
0:56:31.0 AW: Witness? Can I get a witness?
0:56:33.4 TH: Yes, he wants to be a witness. Okay, so that's what section 5 is titled. The name of section 5 is Witness of the Book of Mormon-Martin Harris. Okay, so let's just take a minute, then we're gonna talk about the word 'witness.' So why are witnesses so important? In your own experience in your own life, have you ever been a witness?
0:56:53.7 SC: I've been a witness to lots of things, but not in a court of law, but I've been a witness of eternal families of being of... I don't know, I think being a witness doesn't have to be an official title, I think it can just be, being a part of something.
0:57:10.4 TH: That interested me. What do you mean a witness of eternal families?
0:57:15.7 SC: I witnessed one of my dear friends, they adopted a little boy, and they went to the temple and he was sealed to them, and I wasn't the official witness, but I remember being in that ceiling room and witnessing this eternal family being created right there, and I feel like I've been a witness to so many things like that throughout my life.
0:57:38.7 TH: Great example.
0:57:41.5 AW: Well, I was at Sue's wedding and I was at your wedding Tam, and I was a witness to those things, and I think that one reason a witness could be important is because I can remind you as a friend what I witnessed that day, when those covenants were made and how I felt.
0:58:00.1 TH: Well, and Ame, I just have to say, I am a witness of that happiness, that day was so happy. And Sue, I just love how you brought in this idea of witnesses in our religion, we have witnesses at moments where we make covenants with God. I just think that was neat and how women are allowed to be witnesses now. Hallelujah! I mean this is so awesome, so I'm gonna give you a couple of cross references that I want you to put... You can write it anywhere on your page in section 5, and just write the words 'law of witnesses.'
0:58:31.0 TH: So this has always existed. There's actually a biblical law of witnesses, which has always been a part of Lord's work here on earth, and the cross reference for that is Deuteronomy 19:15. The other example of a law of witnesses is in 2 Nephi 11:2-4. So the Deuteronomy scripture teaches that you just can't have one witness rise up against a man for iniquity, you have to have another witness. In 2 Nephi, Nephi says his soul delights in proving to his people about the truth of Jesus Christ, and he actually cites this law of witnesses, 'cause he knows it's the only way, legally binding and biblically binding, that it can be proved.
0:59:13.2 TH: So we have this law of witnesses, it's super important. Martin Harris comes back and he says to Joseph, "I need a witness. Like, I wanna be able to see the plates, and here's the reason why," and Amy, I love that you brought this up a couple of segments ago, you really feel for Lucy, and I think a lot of us do. Like $50 back then is the equivalent to about $1,500 today. Plus Martin Harris is gonna mortgage his farm for the Book of Mormon, he's going to put up a lot of money for Joseph. And Lucy's kind of just, she's had it. She's upset. She's upset about the time that he's dedicating, she's also upset at Joseph because she feels like he is duping her husband, so she makes these requests, not only to see the 116 pages, but now she's saying, "I wanna see the plates. I need to have a witness." And so she's like...
1:00:00.3 SC: You know what's interesting when he did that, when he gave that $50, it was in a store, I guess, and he made everybody witness.
1:00:07.7 TH: I didn't know that.
1:00:07.9 SC: That he was giving him the money free of... That he didn't have to pay it back, but he's like, "You will all witness this," so it's just interesting to me.
1:00:13.4 TH: Thank you for sharing that, that's awesome. So yes, there's a witness. And so Lucy says, "I need a witness. I need you, you need to see the plate, something." She actually, this is interesting, she files a legal complaint against Joseph and she gathers a number of people who are willing to testify or be witnesses that he had lied about the existence of the plates. So in addition to this threat of a lawsuit to Joseph, these people warned Martin, so the people who joined Lucy, they actually say to Martin, "Look, if you don't get a witness, you're gonna be duped in, you're gonna be lumped in with Joseph Smith, and you're actually going to have to join him in prison because of his fraud."
1:00:51.7 TH: So Martin feels this pressure then to see these plates. So I really like how this was worded. From the Old Testament Seminary Teacher Manual, it says, "At this time, Martin had never seen the gold plates himself, although he acted as a scribe for Joseph. After traveling to Joseph's home, Martin expressed his desire to receive a further witness of the reality of the gold plates. He may have believed that if he could see the plates himself, he would be prepared to testify in the court of their existence and clear his and Joseph Smith's names of fraud. After Joseph listened to Martin's request to see the plates, he inquired of the Lord and he gets Doctrine and Covenants section 5," which is why we titled it what we did.
1:01:25.8 TH: So let's go into Doctrine and Covenants section 5, and we're gonna read verses 2 and 3, and we're gonna see how the Lord responded to Martin's request what the Lord had to say. Sue, will you please read verses 2 and 3?
1:01:38.5 SC: "And now, behold, this shall you say unto him-he who spake unto you, said unto you: I, the Lord, am God, and have given these things unto you, my servant Joseph Smith, and have commanded you that you should stand as a witness of these things; And I have caused you that you should enter into a covenant with me, that you should not show them except to those persons who I commanded you; and you have no power over them except I grant it unto you."
1:02:10.5 TH: Okay, so how was his overall response to Martin's request? What does he say to Joseph?
1:02:15.9 SC: He's basically saying, "You entered a covenant with me and you can't show them, and if you do, I will take your gift away, because this is what I said. I granted it unto you and you have to do what I say."
1:02:31.1 TH: And that his main job in that verse, he says, you should stand as a witness of these things, that's his main job. Joseph's main job is to testify and to be the main witness of these things.
1:02:40.9 AW: I'll tell you that I would have been like, "I am! He doesn't believe me. Come on!"
1:02:48.6 TH: Just let me show them.
1:02:50.2 AW: What's the big deal?
1:02:50.3 TH: Well, and Amy, you've mentioned this a couple of times, the pressure he must have felt, it would have been so relieving for him to be able to show the plates to even Emma, anybody. Emma will never see the plates, she'll feel them with a cloth over them, but she'll never see them.
1:03:06.0 AW: That would be so hard...
1:03:07.8 TH: I would have peeked, for sure. I would have peeked.
1:03:12.1 AW: I would've been like, "Why doesn't God trust me?" But then I'd be like, "Oh, that's why. Okay, I forgot."
1:03:15.6 SC: I, seriously, the trials that they had to go through and the challenges are unbelievable, it would be so hard to be right next to that and not be able to see.
1:03:28.5 TH: Well, and it's interesting 'cause he says right here, "You're not supposed to show them to anyone except the persons to whom I have commanded you," and he's like, "But who is that?" Because we have some foreshadowing right here... Just go to verse 11 on that page, right next to verse 3, across the aisle, verse 11 says, "And in addition to your testimony, the testimony of three of my servants whom I shall call and ordain unto whom I will show these things and they shall go forth with my words that are given through you." He hasn't even met them yet. Oliver Cowdery is not gonna come until April of 1829, and David Whitmer won't come until June. And so can you imagine getting that revelation, Joseph's like, "But who, who are you talking about?"
1:04:04.3 SC: Right.
1:04:04.8 AW: I can imagine him thinking, "It's not gonna be Emma, she's gonna be so mad. How am I gonna tell Emma?"
1:04:15.6 TH: Absolutely, yes.
1:04:17.8 AW: Too much.
1:04:19.3 SC: Hey, Tam.
1:04:20.1 TH: Yes.
1:04:20.8 SC: There's another scripture that I love is the 2 Corinthians 13:1.
1:04:26.3 TH: Oh yeah, let's go there.
1:04:27.8 SC: That says, "And this is the third time I am coming to you. In the mouth of two or three witnesses, shall every word be established."
1:04:35.5 TH: Sue, give us that reference again to put out as a cross-reference on this page.
1:04:40.3 SC: 2 Corinthians 13:1.
1:04:45.6 TH: Awesome. Such a great witness scripture. That's why missionaries go out in twos. Right there.
1:04:51.0 SC: Oh, for sure.
1:04:52.9 AW: I don't mean to cast so much doubt, but truly, as I was reading about Emma and stuff, about this experience, I just kept thinking, it's all too much. I could never have done it. I would never have had the faith to do this. And even in verse 16, where it says, "And behold, whosoever believeth on my words, then will I visit with the manifestation of My Spirit, and they shall be born of me, even of water and of the spirit." I would still say, "Oh, that's nice, but I really need to see it. I need more." I mean, I'm the person who, before my mission was like, "Okay, I'm ready to see you, Heavenly Father," and I was sure he was gonna show himself to me. That's pretty bold.
1:05:34.9 TH: That is bold.
1:05:36.0 AW: Praying with one eye open, where are you? Okay, flicker the lights, whatever you can do. I tend to need to think I need more. And so when I think of Emma, not being able to see the plates or Martin Harris or his wife or those things like... I get it, 'cause I would have struggled.
1:05:54.6 SC: When I was reading through this section, I thought a lot about signs and that Martin Harris, he wanted to see it, and I don't know if it's like a sign or him seeing the plates is relative to seeing a sign, but it's like... He wanted to see it, he wanted to have the physical evidence. And I read somewhere that it said, "Signs are not given to produce faith but to confirm faith and to bless the faithful."
1:06:26.9 TH: Well, Sue, that is absolutely perfect. Because in the next segment, we're gonna talk about that. In this section 5, verse 23, this sort of is, this is the purpose and reason for this section, it says, "And now again, I speak unto you, My servant Joseph, concerning the man that desires the witness." He desires his witness and there are qualifications to get it, so I love that you just brought this up Sue, because really, what was he asking for? To confirm his faith or to produce it? And maybe not all together his, but maybe the faith of other people. So in the next segment, we are gonna specifically study and discover what the Lord had to say to Martin Harris and even to us about our desire to be a witness.
1:07:15.3 TH: Okay, so before we met, I asked you to study Doctrine and Covenants section 5 verses 24-29, and I asked you to mark what the conditions were that Martin had to meet to receive a witness. So tell us what you found. Teach us those verses.
1:07:31.1 SC: Well, the thing that stood out to me more than anything is that he needs to be humble. In verse 24, "he exalts himself and does not humble himself sufficiently," so the Lord is saying he needs to be humble, 'cause right now he's not. "And he will bow down before me and humble himself in mighty prayer", so again, he needs to humble himself, and then it goes on to say, "and then have a sincerity of heart," which in my mind, I kind of thought is the sincerity of heart another way of saying being humble? And maybe it's different, but to me, this humble theme is so prevalent in here. And then it goes on in verse 28, "And now, except he humble himself and acknowledge unto me." So there's lots of things that he needs to do, but the word 'humble' is what really stood out to me.
1:08:27.5 TH: And so you focused on verse 24, and that is a great 'if and then' statement that we like to study in scripture. Let's mark that. Verse 24 says, "Behold, I say unto him, he exalts himself and does not humble himself sufficiently before me, but if... " So circle that word 'if' and highlight that. "If he will bow down before me and humble himself in mighty prayer and faith in the sincerity of his heart, then" highlight that and circle that, "then will I grant unto him a view of the things which he desires." So I love that you pointed out the humility part, 'cause there is a direct 'if and then' statement from God, "if you do this, then you get this." Excellent, thank you for sharing that. Would did you come up with, Ame?
1:09:09.0 AW: Of course, I don't know why I'm like the naysayer in all this, but I'm like, "Well, he is. Man, he's willing to give his reputation, he's willing to give his money, all of these things, like how much does the Lord require?" I tried to see where Martin Harris wasn't humble, so was he not humble because he asked to see the plates? Is that a lack of humility?
1:09:31.9 TH: Well, that's such a great question because Amy, as you were just saying that, I was thinking the same thing, like what are we talking about with humility for this guy? You're right, 'cause he was willing to mortgage his farm, he gave his money, he was willing to give up his good name.
1:09:45.9 AW: Well, his relationship with his wife was suffering, like that's everything, I think. Your wife, your farm, you're inheritance... Like everything.
1:09:55.2 TH: Your friends.
1:09:55.9 SC: No, well, the thing that stood out to me is, of why he's not being humble, or maybe that I feel why the Lord is feeling he's not being humble is because Martin Harris is basically saying, "Show me the plates and I will believe you." And the Lord is saying, "Believe me and I will show you the plates." He wants him to have the faith aspect and not just "Show me." And is that where he needs to be humble, is that where he needs to not be, "I deserve this or I am doing this, I am giving you money, I am sacrificing my reputation, you just need to have faith."
1:10:40.0 TH: Well, let's look at verse 28. I think this verse is interesting, and remember we marked in verse 3, where he already made a covenant and promised to only show it to those four people, his brother, his parents, his wife, and his wife's sister. And 28 says, "And now, except he humbled himself." And here's kind of the requirement, "Acknowledge unto me the things which he has done which are wrong, and covenant with me that he will keep my commandments and exercise faith in me, behold, I say unto him, he shall have no such views, for I will grant unto him no views of the things of which I have spoken."
1:11:13.2 TH: And I think it's interesting when I read that, 'cause in my mind, I'm like, wow, he didn't keep the covenant, he thought he would just do whatever he thought was right, and I think that's part of the part where he's being called out, you have to remember who's in charge, Martin, it's God. Not you, not your friends. Not the public pressure. Again, tough stuff though, Amy. I like how you bring that up, that was hard for him. And that's a hard humility, even in the world we live in today.
1:11:40.6 AW: Well, it's that feeling of, for me, it wasn't enough. But the Lord knew what he needed and he knew his heart, and he knew he could do more or he wouldn't have required it.
1:11:52.9 SC: I look at it and think the Lord knew his heart and knew that he needed to have more faith and not necessarily a witness to the plates, but was he acting on the faith that he had in the Lord and in Joseph Smith?
1:12:10.2 TH: Well, both of you, what you're saying is right, let's go to verse 32 and 35 because here's what he has to say about the witness that Martin wants, and what I like about this is because it also applies to us today, some of us are waiting for a witness, maybe some of us feel like we didn't get a strong enough one, I like what he says here. So Sue, will you read verse 32 for us, please?
1:12:31.8 SC: "And now, because I foresee the lying in wait to destroy thee, yea, I foresee that if my servant Martin Harris humbleth not himself and receive a witness from my hand, that he will fall into transgression."
1:12:45.5 TH: Highlight "Receive a witness from my hand," that means something specific in this verse. This "receive a witness from my hand" is the equivalent of the Lord's simple witness. I call this the Naaman Effect. In the Old Testament, there was this great and mighty man by the name of Naaman and he had leprosy, and he needed to be healed of this leprosy or he was gonna lose everything, and his wife had a little maid that worked for her, and this little maid said to the wife, "I know of this great prophet that can heal Naaman of his leprosy, if he just goes to this great prophet, he's gonna get healed."
1:13:20.4 TH: And so Naaman goes to the Prophet Elijah, and the prophet doesn't come out to meet him. The prophet sends one of his servant boys out, and the servant boy says, "You're supposed to go wash your body seven times in the Jordan River, and then you'll be clean, and Naaman freaks out." Because he's like, "First of all, Jordan River is disgusting. He couldn't have chosen a much better river of all the rivers like, come on."
1:13:41.3 TH: So he's mad about that. Yeah, and then he says, "And why couldn't it be something cooler? Like come out and do some kind of cool magic and heal me or put a paste on my skin, anything." And it's neat because Naaman's servant then says to him, "If he had come out and performed some great miracle, you would have believed that, and all he's asking you to do is something so simple, just go bathe seven times, let's see if it works." And so Naaman does, he goes and dips seven times in the Jordan River, and when he comes out, he is completely cleansed of his leprosy, and then he comes back and bears testimony.
1:14:11.4 TH: And if you wanna cross reference verse 32 to 2 Kings chapter five, that's where you're gonna find that story. But it was just such a simple witness, it wasn't flashy, it wasn't big, and sometimes we get caught up in this idea that we need a big flashy witness in order for something to be true, and Martin was kind of leaning towards that. He needed some big flashy witness, and the Lord's like, "I just need him to receive a witness from my own hand," and like you go back to what you said, Amy, why couldn't it have been just the $50 as his witness, that the Spirit guided him to just do that? Why couldn't it have been Professor Anthon experience? Why wasn't it giving the 116 pages, he had all these experiences that didn't seem to work out in his estimation or in Lucy's estimation and the Lord's like, it's just simple, it's so simple. Why do you need all of this? If you're willing to accept a very simple witness, then I will let you be my witness. And then we go into verse 35, kind of the qualifier for this, Amy, will you please read verse 35?
1:15:12.3 AW: "And if thou art faithful in keeping my commandments, thou shalt be lifted up at the last day."
1:15:19.1 TH: That's the ultimate qualification for any of us to receive a witness is to be faithful to keeping his commandments, but I love the "lifted up." Highlight that. That means two things. The word 'lifted up' right there means exalted. So the final end of all, you get celestial kingdom, and it can also mean... I love this. section 88:96. It means the rapture, which we believe in, FYI. It's very good to know. I didn't know we did. I made fun of people on my mission who believed in the rapture. And then someone said we believed in it. I'm like, we do? I can't wait to get to section 88:96, because we're gonna have so much fun with section 88. But put that cross-reference 'cause that 'lifted up' means sort of like the rapture. We're gonna be raptured. So much fun.
1:16:00.8 AW: Your face.
1:16:02.6 TH: I did, I made fun of people that had bumper stickers saying that, "Warning, in case of rapture, this car will be unmanned." [laughter] And then I'm like, "We believe in that, we believe we'll be lifted up in glory to be with Jesus in the cloud when he comes again." Wa-wa. Oh, well, do you guys have any thoughts about that? Receiving a simple witness from the Lord?
1:16:24.2 AW: No, it's kind of my answer today, it's been a year coming since I've been reading the Saints book, and I think the enough... What is enough? What is enough faith is different for every single person, and the Lord knows what we need and how we need it. That's why he didn't appear to me, when I asked for it, he could have... Boy, I would have been accountable, for a lot more than he knew I could handle. 'Cause he knew what was coming, the mistakes I would make, and so he loved me enough to give me these little... Not little, smaller experiences to strengthen my faith, but he knows what I'm capable of.
1:17:04.0 SC: That's what I keep thinking back is just that the Lord knows what was in Martin Harris's heart, and he knows what he needed. And so many times, in these verses that we've just read, it talks about humble, but also talks about faith so much, and that he needed to have faith, and there's something that I've learned actually through all these podcasts this year that's really stuck with me is that faith is an action verb. When we have faith, it puts us into motion, and the Lord knew that whatever Martin Harris's intentions were, that he needed more faith, and faith in God and not faith in seeing the physical plates.
1:17:52.3 TH: It kinda just made me think, when both of you were talking, I'm imagining the Lord saying to Martin, "When will it be enough? When will it be enough?"
1:18:00.2 AW: And I keep imagining Martin saying, "When will it be enough? I've given it all." And it goes back to the knocking, right? Faith opens doors.
1:18:09.0 TH: Yeah, let's read this cool quote, I love this by Elder D Todd Christofferson, it's talking about becoming a witness of Christ, and he kind of lays this foundation for how we receive our witness, and then the role that plays in the lives of others. So he first starts out by saying, "Our witness of Christ typically begins with the testimony of others, people we know or know about and trust." And then he gave examples like the New Testament prophets, the Old Testament prophets, then the prophets in the Book of Mormon, the prophets of Joseph Smith's testimony, we have 12 witnesses, and then we have our own special witnesses. And so Amy will you read this quote, please?
1:18:45.9 AW: "We have the special witness of our own time who live among us from whom, with our own eyes and ears, we receive a confirming testimony. Many are further blessed to hear the testimonies of parents, grandparents, and faithful friends. It is a spiritual gift to believe in the words of others and a further gift given by the Holy Ghost to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He was crucified for the sins of the world. This witness often comes in feelings of burning, a peace, a feeling of assurance, a sense of enlightenment."
1:19:16.7 TH: Thanks, Ame. Who were your witnesses? I'm curious to know growing up.
1:19:22.7 AW: Well, obviously, my parents first and then just people all throughout my life. Becky Rainer my young women's president, she was a big witness for me, in ways my parents couldn't be. And what a gift and what a blessing. Then my mission president, for sure. You are a huge witness to me.
1:19:42.6 TH: Thank you.
1:19:44.9 SC: I think my parents were a huge witness, and I remember when I went through the temple for the first time, and we didn't have temple prep classes, I didn't know as much about it as I think that we teach now, but I remember going through the temple and going into the celestial room with all of my family there, and I didn't quite understand everything that had gone on, but as I walked into that celestial room and saw my brothers and their wives and my parents, that was my witness that everything that I saw and did that day was from God because those were the people in my life that I love and trust more than anyone, and I remember that feeling and knowing this is true.
1:20:36.9 TH: Perfect examples, both of you. Thank you for sharing those. I just feel like for anyone listening who's seeking a witness, you are a witness. I just have this powerful thought of 15 million members worldwide, over 15 million members worldwide. That's a lot of witnesses. They can't all be wrong. And so there are times in your faith where you're going to have questions, there are times in your faith where you're going to have moments where you're like, ah, disbelief or questions. That's okay. Rely on the witnesses though, look to the witnesses. That is what it's about, and it's a simple witness, it's so simple, and that is what I think sometimes Satan gets us caught up in.
1:21:17.9 TH: He did with me, I thought I needed some big old witness, I thought then, the Naaman Effect had a place on my heart for many, many months on my mission, and it did, it boiled down to just something so simple, that peaceful feeling, and I had to be reminded of that. So thank you, ladies. Thank you so much, that's the end of our discussion. Wow.
1:21:40.6 SC: That was so fun.
1:21:40.6 TH: That was fast.
1:21:44.3 AW: It was awesome. So much fun.
1:21:44.4 TH: You guys are awesome. This was great discussion. I love these verses, I love these chapters now, that was so fun.
1:21:50.6 AW: I know. When I listen to the podcast and it gets to this part, I'm always seriously mad. I'm like, "No!"
1:21:58.0 SC: Why is it over?
1:22:00.0 AW: "I'm not done!"
1:22:00.0 TH You're not done!"
1:22:01.0 AW: 'Cause I listen to it all at once.
1:22:03.7 TH: Okay, so take a couple of minutes, gather your thoughts and tell me, what was your takeaway from this discussion?
1:22:09.8 AW: You said something that I love, and I actually say similar things to my kids, but all of a sudden, it hit me that it's what I need. You said, in regards to Naaman, how he was told to go and he's complaining about, "That's the dirtiest river in town," and you said, "Just go and see if it works." It's so hard for me sometimes to just go see if it works, but it's really a lot easier to see if it works than to sit and think about why it's not working or it's not going to work, that's a big takeaway, the thought, prove me here and...
1:22:42.0 TH: Yes. Prove me now here with. That's awesome.
1:22:49.5 AW: Okay, I'm not gonna ask to see the plates and I'm never gonna ask to see God again in this life, I learned that.
1:22:55.5 TH: I love it.
1:22:57.2 AW: But it's those little things that I'm asked to do, do "Come, Follow Me" with my family, family scripture study, family prayer, and all these little faith-building experiences along the way that show Heavenly Father that I can be trusted for more experiences.
1:23:12.8 TH: Awesome, thanks, Ame.
1:23:14.2 SC: I think my takeaway was when we were reading verses in section 4:2, and when we talked about your heart, might, mind and strength, and that it really comes down to of what you were saying, Tam, is that we just do the best we can. The Lord isn't expecting us to do all of it and be perfect in our service, in our daily lives. He's just asking us to do the best that we are, and the best that we can do. And to me, that's huge, because sometimes I feel like I'm not enough, I'm not doing enough, I'm not serving enough, I'm not serving with my heart and my strength and my mind. But if I know that my Heavenly Father is just expecting me to be the best that I can be and to put forth what I can put forth at that time, then I'm qualified, I'm good, I'm good enough.
1:24:14.6 TH: That's awesome, thank you for sharing that, Sue. You are good enough, 100%. You know what, I would have to say that my takeaway today was our discussion about witnesses, and for me, I just had this kind of clear moment where I was like, it was all about a simple witness, it just... It can be so simple and so easy, and it's the Lord's witness. And our simple witnesses can make a huge difference.
1:24:37.2 TH: I had a woman a couple of weeks ago... Okay, this is a good story. I needed an appliance fixed, so I called to get it fixed, and this woman is in North Carolina, and she has a thick accent. And she found out I was from Utah in the conversation. And she's like, "Okay, so you live in Utah." And I said, "I do." And she's like, "Now, where do you live?" I said, "In Draper, so if you could send someone to Draper, that'd be great." "Okay, now let me ask you this, can I ask you a personal question?" "Sure." "Okay, do you live by Salt Lake?" And I'm like, "Yeah, it's really close. Like 20 minutes away." "Mm-hmm. Now, here's what I wanna know. Those "Real Housewives at Salt Lake", can you talk to me about that? Now what is it about your Mormon religion?"
1:25:09.6 TH: And immediately I froze, I'm like, "I don't wanna talk about this. Can we just get me a technician please?" My heart is racing. And she's like, "Because I just can't believe you can't be divorced and be a Mormon. That just seems like the craziest thing I've ever heard." And we spent 45 minutes on the phone, I was like, I gotta pull it together. What is my witness? I'm getting ready to teach this, and in my own way, I kind of bore my testimony to her and she says, "Girl, I'm gonna call you everyday to talk about this new show, I wanna know more about these Mormons."
1:25:37.7 TH: And I just... In me, I'm like, "I can send you two representatives." I didn't say that. I'm not there yet in my witness, but I'm gonna get there, that's my goal, by the end of the year, to get there in my witness, so that I could send missionaries to someone's house, so that just made me think, "What is my witness?" Well, thank you ladies. For those of you listening, we would love to hear what your big takeaway was from this episode.
1:25:57.5 TH: Now, if you have not already joined our discussion group, you have to go, it is an incredible community of faith. I love Sunday on Monday on Instagram and Facebook, and people ask questions throughout the week, and they share their thoughts and their feelings, it's so much fun. And then usually on Sunday, we do a post asking for what your big takeaway is. So comment on the post that relates to this lesson, I read all of them. If you wanna know how to get to Facebook and Instagram, you can go to our show notes for this episode at ldsliving.com/sundayonmonday and there will be information there. And it's not even a bad idea to go there because that's where you can find all the links to the references that we used today, as well as an entire transcript of this whole discussion. So go check it out.
1:26:35.4 TH: 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 awesome study group participants: Sue Hunsaker Cutler and Amy Hutchins Whitmore.
1:26:45.7 AW: Hey, hey, guys.
1:26:47.8 TH: Hey.
1:26:50.7 SC: Hey.
1:26:51.2 TH: You can find more information about these ladies at ldsliving.com/sundayonmonday. Our podcast is produced by Katie Lambert and me, Tammy Uzelac Hall. It is recorded and mixed by Mix at Six Studios, and our executive producer is Erin Holstrom. Thanks for being here. See your next week and remember, thou art still chosen because you are God's favorite.
1:27:13.2 AW: Am I the only one who has to sing: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus...
1:27:19.7 TH: No. That's funny. I learned it this way. Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers. Deuteronomy...
1:27:24.3 AW: Wow, I don't know that one.
1:27:25.7 TH: I still have to sing the song.