47: “Seek the Lord, and Ye Shall Live" (Amos, Obadiah)
The prophet Amos’s name has a Hebrew translation that we find fascinating; Amos means being burdened or troubled. At first that seems like an odd name for a prophet, but when you consider the weighty responsibilities God’s chosen servants carry, the name makes sense. In this week’s study of Amos and Obadiah, we’ll learn about the vital role of prophets and why they are asked to carry such a heavy burden. We will also find the comforting reassurance that the Lord “will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.”
Amos 1:1 (Amos beheld visions)
D&C 101:39 (Covenant keepers are the salt of the Earth)
Amos = to be burdened or troubled
Saw = chazah - to see or behold visions
Amos 1:6 (The people are overflowing in sin)
Amos 1:9 (Forgot the brotherly covenant)
Amos 2:4 (Despised the law of the Lord)
CR: 2 Samuel 12:9
Hymns #113: Our Savior’s Love (We love thy law)
Amos 5:14-15 (Hate evil and love good)
John 10:10 (Live abundantly)
Amos 2:6 (Not caring for the needy)
Amos 2:12 (Denying Prophets)
CR: Matthew 5:3 (New Testament beatitudes)
CR: 3 Nephi 12:1 (Blessed are they that heed the prophet)
Acts 10:3-5 (Cornelius learns of Peter’s calling)
Amos 3:7 (Reveal secrets to His servants the prophets)
CR: 2 Kings 2:13-15 (The mantle of Elijah)
Judgment = mishpat - justice
Words of the Prophets:
A young boy in the family picked up on the conversation. When the tour group entered an endowment room, the boy pointed to the altar, where people kneel to make covenants with God, and said, “Oh, that’s nice. Here is a place for people to rest on their temple journey.”
I doubt that the boy knew just how profound his observation was. He likely had no idea about the direct connection between making a covenant with God in the temple and the Savior’s stunning promise:
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. (Matt. 11:28)” (Russell M. Nelson, “Overcome the World and Find Rest”, October 2022 General Conference)
I shall use my right, and declare that, notwith-standing Mr. Redding may have seen a wonderful appearance in the clouds one morning about sunrise…he has not seen the sign of the Son of Man, as fore told by Jesus; neither has any man, nor will any man, until after the sun shall have been darkened and the moon bathed in blood; for the Lord hath not shown me any such sign; and as the prophet saith, so it must be—"Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He revealeth His secret unto His servants the prophets." (See Amos 3: 7.) Therefore hear this, earth: The Lord will not come to reign over the righteous, in this world, in 1843, nor until everything for the Bridegroom is ready.
(Joseph Smith, “History of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Vol. 5”, page 290)
Amos 6:1-6 (Woe to those at ease in Zion)
CR: Exodus 19:6
Amos 7:2 (How will Jacob recover?)
CR: 2 Nephi 26:24
Amos 7:7-9 (The plumbline is a line in the sand)
Thus saith the LORD = coming forth from God
Obadiah 1:1 (The vision of Obadiah)
CR: D&C 1:36
Obadiah 1:18 (Judgment comes for the world)
CR: 2 Peter 3:9
Obadiah = Servant of the Lord
Obadiah 1:21 (Saviors on Mount Zion)
Words of the Prophets:
But how are they to become saviors on Mount Zion? By building their temples, erecting their baptismal fonts, and going forth and receiving all the ordinances, baptisms, confirmations, washings, anointings, ordinations and sealing powers upon their heads, in behalf of all their progenitors who are dead, and redeem them that they may come forth in the first resurrection and be exalted to thrones of glory with them; and herein is the chain that binds the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers, which fulfills the mission of Elijah…
The Saints have not too much time to save and redeem their dead, and gather together their living relatives, that they may be saved also, before the earth will be smitten, and the consumption decreed falls upon the world. (Joseph Smith, “Teachings of the Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith”, History of the Church, 6:183–84; from a discourse given by Joseph Smith on Jan. 21, 1844, in Nauvoo, Illinois; reported by Wilford Woodruff.)
I believe we move and have our being in the presence of heavenly messengers and of heavenly beings. We are not separate from them…We are closely related to our kindred, to our ancestors…who have preceded us into the spirit world. We can not forget them; we do not cease to love them; we always hold them in our hearts, in memory, and thus we are associated and united to them by ties that we can not break.
If this is the case with us in our finite condition, surrounded by our mortal weaknesses…how much more certain it is…to believe that those who have been faithful, who have gone beyond…can see us better than we can see them; that they know us better than we know them.
We live in their presence, they see us, they are solicitous for our welfare, they love us now more than ever. For now they see the dangers that beset us;...their love for us and their desire for our well being must be greater than that which we feel for ourselves.”
Joseph F. Smith, in Conference Report, Apr. 1916, 2–3; see also Gospel Doctrine, 5th ed. (1939), 430–31.
"All right, that's it, I have had it. You two need to go to timeout, and I will come and get you when Jesus comes again because He's the only one who can save you right about now." Please tell me I'm not the only person to think these thoughts and I'm not even necessarily talking about my kids. After studying Amos and Obadiah, I have a very strong feeling that those are like the modern-day words these two prophets would have said, and they perfectly sum up the message of these two books.
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. I'm your host, Tammy Uzelac Hall. Now if new to our study group, we just want to make sure you know how to use this podcast, so follow the link in our description. It's going to explain how you can best use this podcast to enhance your Come, Follow Me study, just like my friends - my "Leslie friends". I have two friends, Lesley Williamson, and my cousin Leslie Uzelac. I love you both. Thank you for listening!
Now, here's my favorite thing about the study group, is each week we're joined by two of my friends and so it's always a little bit different and it's different this week. I am beyond thrilled. So excited, little bit nervous. Can't believe this is happening. I get to introduce you to two really great guests. They are Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt, she's a return guest, you guys love her. But we have a new person and we get to introduce you to Ross Baron. Hi you guys.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:18
Ross Baron 1:19
How do you both know each other?
Ross Baron 1:22
So I met Sister Platt, Jen, I met her at when she came up to, well, we have a common friend who we both love. He served as my Stake President, Robert Reaves. And then we met when she came up to interview at BYU Idaho. And immediately like we are kind of, we see things the same way. The only problem when Jen and I get together is we would talk for like six straight hours. So that's the only issue that Jen and I have because we see things very similarly, and our hearts are knit together in that particular way.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:56
Yep. That's exactly what I would have said, Ross, which just affirms what you just said.
Ross Baron 2:01
There you go.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 2:03
Truly, it's just, it's like I joke and say he's my brother from another mother. And we just, it's been so much fun. We've been together, I guess teaching together for - this is my fifth year - and it's pretty great to get to have such a great colleague.
Ross Baron 2:21
Yeah, we're colleagues, it's colleagues, friends,
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 2:23
Oh, I can imagine. I mean, what I love about both of these two people, they both are real. And I've known Jen for a long time; I've come to know who Ross is through a mutual friend. And I have had the great opportunity to listen to his teachings and glean from what he has taught, and I've even used some of his stuff in my own things. I've always given you credit, Ross. Anyway, you both are brilliant; I can't wait for our discussion because we just have two books: Amos and Obadiah and I cannot wait for your insight. And if you want to know more about my guests, you can read their bios and see their pictures in our show notes which are found at LDS living.com/sunday on Monday.
So friends, grab your scriptures, your journals and something to write with and mark your Scriptures with, and we're gonna dig in. Let's turn to the Book of Amos. Here we go. Amos' name in Hebrew means 'to be burdened or troubled'. Now, this really struck me because I felt like of all of the names in the Bible, this might be the least Jehovah-centric. And then I thought, or is it? I want you two to tell me about his name, in light of what he's going to talk about.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 3:28
The first thing that comes to my mind was, do you remember when President Monson was called and he asked us to pray for him? And my husband and I were talking about that, and just this really sweet plea, "Will you pray for me?" And as I think about him, he was the prophet to the widows, and was so sensitive to 'the one and the individual'. And I think as a fellow empath, that's a burden. And when you consider the extent of the ministry, that it's to the whole world, that that to me must be a burden. And I don't know that we talk enough about that, actually, that I think that we talk a lot about cute old men instead of, 'You know what? This is the Lord's anointed, the one keyholder.' And that is a burden. And that we have a responsibility in that.
That's a great take on his name, Jen, I like that. What about you, Ross?
Ross Baron 4:35
So names are super significant, as we all know, in terms of not only - and I often wonder sometimes if this was his birth name, I'm assuming it was but it might not have been. So for example, I'm not sure Melchizedek's parents named him Melchizedek, you know, you're 'the righteous king'. I think he became Melchizedek. In other words, his name reflected not only his calling, but who he became to be. And so Amos has a particular message that I think it's actually, contains two things. One, it's obviously a difficult message, it's a lot of consequences as a result of some inappropriate behavior. But at the same time, it's a message of hope.
Ross Baron 5:19
And while he has the burden of preaching, so there's - we're gonna get to it, obviously - but there's a passage in Amos. Remember when Amaziah says, you know, Hey, knock it off. You can't, you got to stop preaching to the northern tribe, you can go back to Judah, you can go back to Judah, but you can't, you can't preach anymore here. And, and Amos is like, No, that is my, that's my calling. And, you know, we say burden. And that's a kind of a negative thing. But Amos seems to 100% embrace it. He embraces his role as this voice of God to the people. And by the way, the voice of God is again, on the one hand, super consequential, but on the other hand, full of hope.
So, Ross, can I ask you something, though, with that, and even Tammy? You know that I think about that, because we've all had callings that have felt burdensome. And there's something, I let's see if I can articulate this because I think there's something to what you just said that, like, I love how you said, Melchizedek became that. We likewise become it if we will allow ourselves to. And I think that that's the beauty of a prophet, that we can see them in their - I like to quote sister Nelson - "unleash" and in their full capacity. How do we do a little bit better individually at owning our greatness, like really living up to who we're meant to be? Does that makes sense?
Wow. Well, I mean, just when you were talking about the name right there. I'm looking through all the names of the past prophets, because I said it's probably the least, you know, Jehovah-centric name. And I love the way that both of you described that. But in becoming these names, like, you know, Daniel - 'God is my judge'. Was he given that name? Or did he come into that experience with that name because of what he experienced with the kings? And I just, now it's kind of making me think, What would my name be today, given the way that I have accepted or not accepted certain callings? And the way I did my calling? That changes everything for me, Jen. What will my name be, given with what I've done with what the Lord's given me?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 8:07
Ross Baron 7:31
And notwithstanding, you know, his name is 'the burden', this idea of 'a burden'. You know, Elder Uchtdorf in his discussion about teaching the Savior's way that recently came out, and him talking about, Well, we're going to add one thing and that is: no matter what you teach, you teach about Jesus Christ. So Amos, again, the word burden has obviously a negative connotation. But Amos' burden is to teach about Jesus Christ and to teach about following the Savior; about covenants, about the Abrahamic covenant. And so Jen's question about well, so how do we live up? Well you have to go vertical and connect to the Savior. That's where you're going to get that power.
Ross Baron 8:08
And Amos, this is a hard mission and it's a hard prophecy. But he, he taps in. I mean, you can tell he is one faithful brother. He contrasts his calling. He says, I was a herdman. I'm not, I wasn't,' you know. I'm not sure if he's foreshadowing Isaiah, who is kind of in the royal courts, and you know, this amazing master poet. He's like, 'I was a herdman in Tekoa. I, I live south of Jerusalem. I'm just this guy.' But God raised Him up. And I think we, we always go vertical, we yoke ourselves via covenant, and that's how we live up to whatever name we have. Ultimately, our name is Christ, you know. We've taken upon ourselves in the name of Christ, we're Abrahamic.
Ross Baron 8:54
And so when the Savior comes to the Nephites and in the Sermon on the Mount, he says, 'You're gonna be the salt of the earth.' And I think we blow by that because we want to get to the 'You are the light of the world', right? That's the one that comes next and we don't focus on the salt. And I always say, look, salt does four things. Salt preserves, salt enhances, salt cleanses, and salt heals. And if, if you're, you can take your own litmus test now to see if you're the salt of the earth. Are you enhancing, preserving, healing, cleansing? If you're not, then what does the Savior say? You're henceforth good for nothing, right? Just like salt that's lost its saltiness. So section 101:39, anybody that enters into an everlasting covenant becomes the salt of the earth. Right? So I think Amos, I mean, bless him. I can't wait to meet meet him when we get on the other side. But he has a tough mission, but I think he embraces it. He connects with his covenant, he connects with the Lord and there's where his power comes from.
Amen. Excellently said and everything you just said, we, I mean that's Amos. Thank you, Ross and Jennifer for your thoughts and how we connected all of this. Because what we do know about Amos is he is a prophet. And I think what added to his burden is in Amos 1:1 he's also a seer. Oh, yeah, these big responsibilities. And I like in Amos 1:1 where it says:
1:1 "The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw"
Highlight the word 'saw' there, or circle it. In Hebrew, this word is HAZAH. And it means to what 'one who beholds or sees visions, prophetic visions'. So that's how we know that. So he's got a pretty big burden. And I agree with you, Ross. I can't wait to meet Amos, shake his hand, and just sit down and find out, because the humility in him, 'I'm just a shepherd'. Like 'I don't, I'm kind of like you. Well, let's figure this out together.' And the people just weren't having it. So in the next segment, we're going to talk about that and what Amos was sent to do.
Segment 2 10:54
So I have a question for either one of you. Have you ever been warned about something and you didn't listen? How'd it turn out? You got a story? What do you got, Ross?
Ross Baron 11:08
Let's see. I've got more than one. I'll tell you, I'll tell you an interesting one, and it's not a dastardly thing. So we used to go to symposium for church education system things. I don't know if either of you ever did that.
Ross Baron 11:22
So we went to symposium and it's always in August. It's hot, it's Provo, it's even a little humid. And Boyd K Packer was going to speak that evening in this, in the, you know, in the Marriott Center. And so you're going to classes all day, my wife and I are together. And I still remember when I got up in the morning, I felt clearly - it's again, not a warning - a prompting to say, 'wear your shirt and tie.' And I said, Oh gosh, I'll come back for my shirt and tie because I'll go to the Marriott Center later. But I kept feeling it, and then we went to lunch and it was like, 'Go back to the, your dorm and get your shirt and tie.' I didn't get my shirt and tie. And then as the time approached, we went to the Lavell Edwards stadium to get our box lunches. You remember that? And then it was like, 'Go back and get your tie.' And I, so three times, three times 'get your shirt and tie on.' I didn't listen. Then I finally rationalized it: I'm not, it was so hot and humid. I'm not going to do that.
Ross Baron 12:22
So we're walking to the Marriott Center for Elder Packer's address. A car pulls up. First person out of the car: Boyd K. Packer. Walks right up to me, literally comes out of the car, walks right up to me, looks at my nametag, says "Ross Baron. How are you?" And I was mortified. Not that, I again, not that I needed to be in a suit and tie, right. But I think the spirit was saying, 'You're gonna meet Elder Packer today'. And you know, and I, 100%, now again, great experience, I got to meet, he never said a word. He wasn't like, Why aren't you wearing a shirt and tie? But I feel like, dang it, I blew that one. I missed that.
Like, what did it teach you? Because yeah, he didn't say anything. Why would you
Ross Baron 13:04
Oh, he didn't say a word.
What was it for you?
Ross Baron 13:06
No, it taught me, you know, it's the old Joseph Smith lesson after the Martin Harris thing. Whatever the Lord, whatever the Lord says, do it. Even if it doesn't make any sense, like, just do it. And you know, so and again, that was you know, decades ago, and hopefully I've changed and repented of that.
Great story. Wow. Thank you for sharing that. What about you, Jen?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 13:27
You know, this has been so hard. I've been thinking about it for weeks. And I, all the time. I feel like I'm warned and I just don't have a good story. Right? But I love the way you just framed it because the Holy Ghost, that's who he is for me. And that there's this constant, I love that. Like going back to the question that I asked a minute ago that how did Amos become his name? And, I think it's the Holy Ghost. I think he tutors us, he cautions us. We've become so familiar with him that we obey, we learn to obey. And I think it happens all the time. I think all day long I'm getting prompts or warnings, and I get to choose, you know. I wish that I had this really great, you know. What I kept thinking about was the times that I would go in and meet curfew and tell my parents I was home and turn around and leave and go back out. I mean, that was what kept coming to me was like gosh, I was a naughty kid. But it's that idea. And I like what I'm feeling right now that it's this tethering yourself with the Holy Ghost to know, You really don't want to do that and that it can be as simple as the way I'm dressed.
You know, as you were talking about the Holy Ghost, I thought of Amos 5:14. We just have to mark this verse because it's sort of the overall theme for the Book of Amos. And here's what Amos 5:14 says,
5:14 "Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken."
So Amos starts with speaking to everyone BUT the children of Israel, which the children of Israel, they love. But then he comes down hard and heavy on them. And Ross, I want you to tell us about his message.
Ross Baron 15:16
I think the message starts to get honed, especially in the middle of chapter 2 where now we're talking about Israel. So we're not talking about, we're not talking about Syria anymore. I'm not going about Ammon anymore. I'm not talking about Moab. I'm not talking about Edom. I'm going to talk about Israel, like, wha, right?
Yeah, His focal point is on them; He comes down the hardest on them in chapter 2.
Ross Baron 15:37
Oh, well, and then for the rest of the book. I mean, essentially the rest of the book is now, okay, the eye turns to Israel. And why? Because they are the covenant people. I mean, they know better. Right? So it's, it's, that's what's going on.
Well, and I was struck with the wording that you see over and over again, "Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions and for four. For three transgressions and for four." And my understanding is that this is a way to really put some focus on, I think what it means is that the nations are just full to overflowing of sin. That three is a way in Hebrew to mean 'the most '. If something's repeated three times, it's sort of the superlative of 'no more could you do this.' But four, they're even gonna take it one step further, like, not just three, but four. And it was interesting each time that He sends fire. And I wanted to know why you guys thought, what your thoughts are about this? Like, why are God's judgments compared to fire?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 15:51
I think there's a finality to fire.
Ross Baron 15:59
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 16:02
That it gets it all the way through. But we also, I mean, the Holy Ghost is like into fire; that there's a purifying, a sanctification that comes in fire, and that that can be complete.
Ross Baron 16:50
Can I make a general comment that might be helpful to your listeners? I mean, I think the book of Amos can be a bit daunting for two specific reasons. One, that the people that are mentioned, there's so many people mentioned, just boom: Hazael, Ben Hadad. I mean, all these names get dropped. Jeroboam gets dropped, right? All these, Uzziah, all these names get dropped through the whole book. The second thing is the place names. There are, I don't, I didn't count, but it's got to be over 40 different place names. And I think that, so somebody who starts reading Amis might get a little daunted by, 'Oh, my word. I don't know who these people are. And I have no connection to these places.' Right?
Ross Baron 17:33
And I think we live in a time where, given the 'Bible atlas.org', 'Blue letter bible.org', Bible hub', the 'Citation Index', 'Google'. That if people will, I always like to tell my students take a chapter, and then read-blow through the chapter and then write down every single place name, and every single person's name. And then now tell me who those people are, do the research, it's not gonna take you that long. And then it becomes less daunting, then you get kind of a nice, beautiful overview of what's happening. Like I said to you, chapter 1 he's talking about Lebanon, he talks about Syria, talks about Moab, talks about Ammon, he talks about Edom, he talks about Egypt. He just went all around the holy land. And then he focuses on Judah for a little bit. Then he focuses on Israel and the rest of the book's on Israel.
Ross Baron 18:18
So somebody might be like, 'Oh, okay, cool.' Like, that's helpful, right? And then you can say, 'Okay, who are these people we're talking to?' Again, we've got all these resources to, you don't have to be a Bible scholar. You don't have to speak fluent Hebrew. You can now know who these people are, and start putting it in perspective. And so for somebody who's listening to this and says, 'Yeah, I get that, you know, Jen, and Ross and Tammy get Amos, but man, it's overwhelming for me.' I say no. I say you can get this. This is something you can attack. and you can take it piece by piece. And it's such a blessing. Right? So, again, that's kind of my, in fact, if I'm teaching Amos at BYU Idaho - that which I do - that's what I would have my students do. Okay, go through this. Don't be, don't be overwhelmed, relax, right? You're gonna go through, and then we're going to talk about this. And then all of a sudden, Oh, my word, it makes sense. You know what I mean?
Ross Baron 19:12
So, Amos 1, Damascus. He's gonna call these people out, but that's really not the focus of the Book of Amos. Right? That's not the focus of the Book of Amos. So I know that wasn't exactly your question about fire. But I think that that gives you some super helpful things in terms of not having anybody feel like, 'Oh, crud, I can't understand the book of Amos.' Let's just admit it's a little daunting. He does have a ton of place names, has a ton of personal names, but we can understand who those people are.
Oh, Ross, I really appreciate you setting that up. It does make it a lot more clear. And for our listeners, I 100% will just agree with what you said. You do not have to be a Hebrew scholar or a scripture scholar. Like there are so many incredible sources out there that can help make all of this so much easier to understand. So thank you. I'll second what you just said. That is incredible.
Ross Baron 19:59
Oh the other thing I would say would be that with respect to chapter 1, and kind of going into chapter 2, I try to find connecting themes. And you know, you brought up this kind of formulaic ,the formulaic thing that he starts with whenever he's going to introduce kind of his curse, you know. Like for three, and then for four, right? But the connecting thing, almost to every single one is violence.
Right. Let's talk about that. Tell me what it is.
Ross Baron 20:29
It's, it's this idea that we hate others. It's the idea that we're going to take what we can. It's the idea that might makes right. It's the idea that violence is okay. It's the idea that I'm somehow exempt from, I can perpetrate violence on others, but it's not okay if they do it to me. And the Lord's like, No, no. And so through all these chapters, especially with these other countries. Now the Lord is going to focus on Israel in a minute. But violence is a very interesting thing.
Ross Baron 21:07
And I think if we go to the First Presidency, President Nelson and President Oaks and President Eyring today, their message is kind of, as the world's gotten more divisive, as the world's gotten more like drawing hard lines, The First Presidency is kind of about making bridges, about reaching out, about forming coalitions with people that maybe don't believe the way we do, and that's okay. Right? But we're going to abhor violence. And we're going to raise the standard of peace. And we're going to be the opposite of what the world is. This is a super, a critique of the world, right? Big time and anticipating, foreshadowing a little what's going to come later. Martin Luther King, his favorite book is the book of Amos.
Oh, I didn't know that.
Ross Baron 21:28
Ross Baron 21:45
So he's going to, so Martin Luther King in his letter from Birmingham jail, he will quote Amos 5, right? I mean, this is, and in his "I Have a Dream" speech he'll quote Amos 5. Right? And so
Wow, that is so cool.
Ross Baron 22:06
This is all about justice and righteousness and peace. And of course, he's coming from a place where people have done violence to his ethnic group, and have somehow felt justified. And Amos is like, No, no, you're not justified in that. So I just think it's so fascinating that what ties it together, especially with chapter 1, going into chapter 2 is violence.
Thank you so much, Ross, for teaching us that. Oh, my gosh, I have never known the connection between Amos and Martin Luther King. That was powerful. And what I love about that is it goes back to the theme of Amos, this "seek good and not evil and live so that the Lord God of hosts will be with you." That gives so much more power to his speech, for me, because it was just such a violent time. And even now it makes me think about that. So that was awesome. Thank you. Thank you. Now let's jump in to Amos chapter 2. And want us to start studying a little bit from there. So tell me a little bit about that, Jennifer in chapter 2. What were some of the things that stood out to you that the Lord was like, We're done because you're doing this?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 23:09
First I want to talk a little bit about this violence idea, because remember that Noah and the world was filled with violence
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 23:15
Right? But that I think that we've become too, too apathetic toward it. We've become too desensitized towards it
Ross Baron 23:21
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 23:25
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 23:27
Yes, that it's, it's on our media, it's in our music. It's so, we're so entrenched in violence that we're not spending enough time saying, I abhor this. I remember reading Wendy Watson Nelson's book about Revelation, and she talked about President Nelson. And just the smallest little thing - it was an aggression in a basketball game - was disturbing to him. And again, I guess I'm still linking it back to this, How does the Prophet become, right? That the, and the Holy Ghost, I'm trying to just pull a thread that's going all the way through with what we're talking about, we have to abhor violence. And I hear people all the time say, Oh, I don't want to read the Old Testament, or the war chapters of the Book of Mormon or whatever it is because of the violence. But if it pricks you that way when you're in the text, then why doesn't it prick you that way when you're watching it on TV?
Ross Baron 24:17
or video games
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 24:20
Yes, or the whole spectrum of things that we succumb to in the name of entertainment. And I just got to be more awake and more aware that God, God is warning us and this is not a new message, that we've got to pay attention to what's desensitizing us.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 24:46
Oh, my gosh, Jen, so good.
Ross Baron 24:47
I would add that, you know, it's interesting. You brought up the Russell M Nelson and Wendy when she talked about that aggression. In President Eyring's biography "I Will Lead Thee Along", he tells a story when he has the three girls and he says something to them and they look at him and they say, "Dad, your tone.' And President Eyring realizes that he had an angry tone. And then he says, "And I had to repent." Right? And I thought, Oh, my word, right? And then what Jennifer was saying, Elder Bednar gave the talk "Things As They Really Are", and he talks about 'so why would you, you know, virtually be killing someone? And how does that affect your spirit?' And so how many students do we have say, 'You know, I won't watch anything with any kind of sexual kind of overtones, but it's okay if it's violent.' And here, while he'll, he will talk about chastity a little bit in the Book of Amos. He really lays out that violence is the issue that's going on in chapter 1.
Ross Baron 25:53
They forgot the brotherly covenant. He says they fogot the brotherly covenant.
Okay, so let's let's do this. In the next segment, we are going to jump into that idea. And we're going to discuss what it was that Judah and the children of Israel were guilty of.
Segment 3 26:09
All right, help me you two. Let's dive in to Amos chapter 2. What is Judah and Israel guilty of, what are their crimes?
Ross Baron 26:21
So I mean, I know that 2:4,5 is about Judah, right? And I think it's important, but I wouldn't overly focus on Judah, because that's not Amos' overall message, right?
Ross Baron 26:35
So he basically, he's going to lay out, you know, there's a couple of problems, right. They, which I think are interesting. And there's a fascinating thing in verse 4. He says, "because they have despised the law of the Lord". It's so sad. By the way, when Nathan comes to David in 2 Samuel 12, he says the same thing to David, "You have despised the law of the Lord." This is after he's killed Uriah, and had committed adultery with Bathsheba.
Ross Baron 27:05
2:4 "......and have not kept his commandments, and their lies caused them to err, after which their fathers have walked:"
Ross Baron 27:10
Okay, so we've got this whole issue with Judah. And that's super important, but clearly not Amos' main idea. Because Israel is over the top worse than Judah. Right? And then the other thing - and so before I jump into this, then I want to hear Jen's comments - the other way to frame this for listeners and for all of us, is to understand, I think two things. Number one is the Abrahamic covenant. So we talk about the Abrahamic covenant, but I don't think we talk enough about Abrahamic responsibilities. So if you want to understand the Old Testament, the New Testament, the Doctrine and Covenants, and the Book of Mormon, I always say, Look. Let's get clear what the Abrahamic covenant is and here are these promises. But then let's make sure what are my now covenant responsibilities? Okay, so if the, to the degree that you stop doing your covenant responsibilities is why you're going to be scattered. Right? So I'm going to say there are four essential covenant responsibilities. It is live the gospel of Jesus Christ, it is unite families for eternity, it is to take care of those in need, and invite all to come into Christ.
Ross Baron 28:19
Now, obviously, I just laid out the mission of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. To the degree that you're not doing that is the degree to which you will be diminished in the spirit, diminished in your capacity to get God's fullest blessing, and to a certain degree be scattered. So for example, if you're despising the law of the Lord and not keeping His commandments, in all likelihood you're not inviting others to come unto Christ, you're not taking care of those in need, which is a huge problem of Israel. And you're going to now start to lose the corresponding Abrahamic blessings. Does that make sense what I'm saying?
Ross Baron 28:58
So really, you can say, you can take the Book of Mormon or you can take the early Christian church or you can take the Old Testament, and then start to understand, Wow, we can make a direct correlation as we read through this why God is going to create the consequences that He's going to do.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 29:14
I have this line running through my head from the hymn "Our Savior's Love": 'we love thy law, we will obey', and how essential it is that that's the foundation - That we love God and because we love God, we will obey. And that that really is for me an anchor point, this idea that they despise that. Despise is an intense word. That's, that's,
Ross Baron 29:38
Yeah, it's huge. And by the way, Jen, I love that your, "Our Savior's Love". If you go to chapter 5, I know I'm jumping ahead
Ross Baron 29:45
Verse 14 and 15: "Seek good and not evil, that ye may live." Verse 15: "Hate the evil, and love the good, establish judgment." Like He's saying what you just said. Like we love thy law, don't just obey because you're afraid of consequences. You've got to get to a point where you hate the evil, and you love the good. And you want to establish, by the way, the word judgment here is MISHPOT. Established justice. Establish justice, hate evil, seek the good, establish judgment. It has to be from our heart, God wants us to want Him. And He wants us to love what He loves.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 30:29
Well, then He wants to bless us with that. That's the thing that so often we say, I mean, to despise His law is to despise. President Nelson has been so clear about God's law, God's love and His law. And so often I hear people, myself included, sometimes that we talk a lot about loving other people, and how important it is to love other people. And then we confuse doctrine and love. We don't understand what doctrinal love is. Like Mark 2 where we're picking up the man with the palsey, to do anything to get him to Jesus. And that's doctrinal I love because I'm going to work all I can to get someone to the Savior. Not just love you in your comfort, not just love you the way you want to be loved, but that includes His law, that I have to know the law, I have to know the order, and that there has to be this desire to love Him first so then I can love others. But it can't be inverted. It has to be in that order.
Well, and both of you brought this up, and I'm so grateful that you did. For those of you listening, go into Amos chapter 5 and highlight all the times you see the word 'seek'. It is so often where it's just saying 'seek the Lord', 'seek the Lord'. And that is what you taught us Ross. And then Jen, what you also taught us about you, you will love Him when you seek Him, when He becomes your focal point, when He's the one thing that you want to see in everything. And so seek Him, love Him.
Ross Baron 31:57
And have them mark as he seeks He promises: "and ye shall live". "And ye shall live," right?
Oh, I love that
Ross Baron 32:04
And what does Jesus say? "I came that they might live, but that they might live more abundantly."
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 32:11
President Nelson, he just recently said to us about the 'rest', entering into the rest. And he used that in the little boy and the altar of the temple. And that this must be where people rest in their temple journey. And then he talked to us about what comes into our lives when we live our covenants. And he was very careful. He was very careful to say, "I'm not saying that living your covenants makes your life easy."
Oh. I remember that.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 32:41
And so when you say "and ye shall live", we need to be really clear what that means. 'You're going to live with Me, like Me.' That this is the promise of an exalted being. That 'you shall live' doesn't mean it's ease, it doesn't mean you're going to get what you want. It means you get to enter into My rest, you get to be with Me.
I put where it says "and ye shall live", I put "in me" after that. Like 'you will live in Me'. And that's the key to this. And that was the problem with the Israelites. They were not doing that. I was shocked with Amos 2:6, where it says "they sold the righteous for silver, and the poor for a pair of shoes;". I mean, Ross, that goes right back to the four Abrahamic responsibilities: not serving others or caring about the needy at all. And in fact, I'm so grateful you gave us those four things, because now in my mind, I'm seeing it everywhere in chapter 2. But the people are not living the gospel. They're not uniting families. They're not serving others, and they're not coming unto Christ. They're doing the opposite, complete opposite and that that despise, that word, Jennifer, when you focused on how heavy that word is. It automatically takes me to verse 12. Like, you despise the law of the Lord so much, that it not only will you not listen to the prophets, but I was shocked with 12. You're commanding the prophets to prophesy not. Like, expound on that. We're not just unwilling to listen to the prophets we're saying, don't even prophesy. How does that look in our everyday life? What are they saying there?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 34:09
For 1, it's so arrogant,
Tell me about that.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 34:11
Who are you to command a prophet? Are you kidding me? That you think you can command a prophet to prophesy not? It's that, it's that whole Elder Maxwell's "The Smorgasbord of Discipleship", that you're going to pick and choose, and you're going to decide that's a convenient one, or I can see myself doing that, or I that works for my life right now. But the other might be a little too much work or too painful. We're not meant to be comfortable. We will be comforted, but we're not meant to be comfortable. And that's I think something just by nature of the Fall we're not meant to be comfortable. We are not at home here. And so this idea - how dare you to tell a prophet to prophesy not?
I'm writing everything down so fast.
Ross Baron 35:01
Well, and the other thing too is, this is one of the issues in mortality, like Jen was saying. From the fall of Adam to now, the rub seems to be we have to deal with humans who God calls to run His kingdom. And I like to always say, Look, if you lived in the time of Noah, and maybe Noah didn't say hello to you as you walked down the hall in church that Sunday. The bottom line is, if you follow Noah you lived and if you didn't follow Noah, you died. Right? I mean, and so it didn't really in the end matter, the humanity of Noah, or the humanity of Moses, or the humanity of Joseph Smith.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 35:40
And you see it almost like a vertical line. And I think God is so kind to give us part in the disruption, but to give us a mortal person to align our destiny.
Ross Baron 35:52
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 35:53
And that when I'm aligned with the prophet, and my experience is that, you know, I've had recent experience where I've tried to say, "That's a dead prophet and I don't have to obey that" And the Lord corrected me. And for me to be able to see actually my alignment, because there is this beautiful progression in the ongoing restoration, like a baton being passed prophet to Prophet. When I'm aligned with him, I can trust I'm aligned with the Savior, because he's His voice, who is aligned with the Father. And this, then is how we become one. And so the Prophet becomes this exquisite type for me to be able to say, I'm going to tether myself, my family. One rule, follow the Prophet. Rule 2, see #1. And that we, that's what it's about. Do you know what he's talking about? What's the most uncomfortable thing for us? That's the one we've got to give the energy and the work to. And when I'm aligned there, then I'm aligned with the Savior. And frankly, President Nelson helps us feel the love of the Lord. And he pleads with us to come to the Savior so that we can be exalted with the Father. I mean, that to me is unmistakable and undeniable
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 35:54
And I know we're gonna segue into Amos 3:7, right?
Go ahead and do it right now, Ross.
Ross Baron 36:59
And so, I don't know if you've noticed this, and I hope you have and I hope people have. The Beatitudes that are in Matthew 5, right, the Beatitudes, the super famous sermon on the mount. The first one in Matthew 5 is "Blessed are the poor in spirit". But when Jesus comes to the saints at the temple at Bountiful in Third Nephi 12, the first beatitude is not "Blessed are the poor in spirit". It's "Blessed are ye if shall give heed unto the twelve whom I have chosen." There's the first beatitude.
Ross Baron 37:33
"Blessed are ye if ye shall give heed unto these twelve whom I have chosen from among you." Wow. Okay, so there's this endorsement from the Savior Himself. And I always tell the students that I'm presumptuous enough to know what an angel would say if he appeared to a non-member. And they're like, WHAT? I say, Yeah. I said, the angels say, 'Go ask the missionaries.' Because the missionaries become the Lord's anointed, the representatives of God's Servant on Earth. And I say the ultimate servant on Earth in this dispensation is the Prophet Joseph. And his successor right now is Russell M. Nelson. And that's what the angel would say. He wouldn't tell you to go write a book, you wouldn't go on Oprah. You wouldn't have any of those kinds of things. He would say, Go ask the missionaries, because they're going to tell you what to do, which is exactly the pattern that Cornelius follows in Acts chapter 10. Right? Go find Peter. Why? Because he's My authorized servant. He's going to tell you what to do.
Ross Baron 38:49
And when Saul has his vision, where the Savior Himself appears, and he says, Lord, what should I do? And I always like to ask my students, close your book, what did the Savior tell him? 'They told him to repent. They told him to do this. They,' Nope. He tells him to do one thing. You remember what it is, you go find my servant, he's going to be in this city. He's going to tell you what to do. Even the Savior won't go around. If He has authorised Servants on earth, He will not go around them. He will always point you to them.
Tell me how you know that our president, our Prophet, Russell M Nelson is a Servant of God - is an anointed, set-apart called of God, man.
Ross Baron 39:27
Okay, so I think that's a super powerful question. And I think, for me, yes. So for me, I'm a convert to the church. I joined the church was 18. And I had an experience with the Book of Mormon with the Holy Ghost testifying to me the book Mormon was true, that Joseph Smith was a prophet. At that time when I joined the church it was Spencer Kimball was the prophet. And then I got a subsequent spiritual experience. Again, it's not seeing angels or visions; the Holy Ghost talking to my spirit. I have a son, my youngest son, we were talking about "hear Him". We were having the conversation how do you hear him? And my youngest son said, "Every single time President Nelson speaks, I can hear the voice of Jesus Christ." And when he said that, the Holy Ghost, I knew it was the same for me. Right? The same for me. And this last General Conference, right, the last one we just had October 2022, when President Nelson got done Sunday morning, I was overwhelmed. I'm not kidding you. And you know what? I texted all the people that I love and my friends. I had one sentence: "There is a prophet in Israel." I mean, it was that evident and that clear.
Ross Baron 40:40
In 2 Kings chapter 2 when the mantle of Elijah falls on Elisha and those other people are able to see the mantle of God has fallen. Now, I know he has the mantle before. But just this recently, it was so evident to me and so clear that Russell M Nelson is the Lord's anointed Prophet and Seer on Earth. It was absolutely evident. And so for me, it's these re-confirmations. But I like what Jen said, 'if it's uncomfortable for you? good. Pinches your collar a little bit? good, good.' Okay, then step up, woman up, man up. This is where you get to show the Savior you're going to keep your covenants, even when it pinches a little bit. So I love that she said that.
I do, too. We're going to seek Him and seek them and follow them. I think, I think both of you for what you shared, both of you and your personal experiences that resonated in me. And again, I believe I know because of what you shared. And we'll just finish the segment with Amos 3:7, because this whole discussion has been about that specific verse. And that's enough. That's all we need to say. Jen, will you please read for us Amos 3:7.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 41:51
Thank you, I'd be happy to.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 41:53
3:7 "Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets."
And will you read it now with the footnote below?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 42:02
Okay. "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, until he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets."
Last question, what doctrinal truth does that word teach us? "Until "
Ross Baron 42:17
Okay, I love that question. So the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1843, there's this whole idea that Jesus is coming soon, the millites and other people, right?
Ross Baron 42:28
And then Joseph writes this letter, and as bold as Amos, (Can I quote from the Prophet Joseph here?)
Ross Baron 42:36
Okay. This is from February 28 1843. The prophet Joseph writes a letter, it's also in the documentary "History of the Church, Volume five, page 290. "I shall use my right and declare that notwithstanding, Mr. Reading may have seen a wonderful appearance in the clouds one morning about sunrise, he has not seen the sign of the Son of man as foretold by Jesus, neither has any man, nor will any man until after the sun shall have been darkened and the moon bathed in blood." Now listen to this. "For the Lord hath not shown me any such sign. And as the Prophet sayeth, so it must be." And then he quotes Amos 3:7. "Therefore, here this O, earth. The Lord will not come to reign over the righteous in this world in 1843, nor until everything for the bridegroom is ready. Yours respectfully, Joseph Smith."
Ho, that's a letter! Whoa, ha ha ha.
Ross Baron 43:26
Okay? So he just basically said, 'The Lord hasn't shown me that. "And surely the Lord God will do nothing, until he reveals it unto his servants the prophets." And since He hasn't shown it to me, it ain't happening.' Boom.
There it is.
Ross Baron 43:40
Have a super good rest of your day. (laughter) That's what it is!
AMEN! That is awesome. Wow. Thank you, Ross for having prepared that to share. Oh my gosh, I love that spirited discussion. Thank you to both of you. So in the next segment, we are going to jump into another chapter of Amos and I have asked Ross to teach us about Amos chapter 6 and 7, and I can't wait because there's some wording in there that I just I'm dying to know how he's gonna teach it and what it means.
Segment 4 44:07
All right, Ross. Hit it. Teach us about Amos chapter 6 and 7, and wherever else a spirit leads you.
Ross Baron 44:23
Okay, so one of the keys here is the way the chapter starts out: "Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria." So again, some background: so the northern tribes, kind of the dividing line is a little above Jerusalem. And above Jerusalem they have the mountains of Samaria. And remember in John chapter 4 when the woman at the well, and she says to Jesus, Well, we worship in this mount, right? That's, it's Sychar, kind of modern day Annapolis. There's mount Girizim, right ,and that we're gonna worship there. And then Jeroboam - they had created a false temple up in the Dan way above the Sea of Galilee. And Bethel, I mean, in other words, they've got these rival kind of false priests and temples going on. So you guys got to be careful because they are at ease in Zion, they think everything's going to be fine. When in fact, verse 3:
Ross Baron 45:20
6:3 "Ye that put far away the evil day," In other words, in their minds, they're like, 'Oh, it'll never be a problem for us, the stock market will never go down. It's going to always be good.' And they cause the seat of violence to come near. There we are, again, this repeated theme.
Ross Baron 45:36
4: "That lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch themselves upon their couches, and eat the lambs out of the flock, and the calves out of the midst of the stall;" In other words, they're just luxuriant, there's prosperity. And what they're doing is the classic, because we are prospering physically, we must be in God's good favor. Because we are able to lie on beds of ivory and do all these things.
Ross Baron 45:36
5: "That chant to the sound of the viol, and invent to themselves instruments of musick, like David;"
Ross Baron 46:10
They drink wine, they anoint themselves, but the end of verse 6, "they are not grieved for the affliction of Joseph." The fact that they've got, they don't have the right to the priesthood, that they have been separated, that they have gone into apostasy. So then the Lord says something super interesting.
Ross Baron 46:30
7: "Therefore now shall they go captive with the first that go captive." Like, you're gonna go first. Right? Eventually Judah is going to go captive, but you're going first. :
Ross Baron 46:39
8: "The Lord God hath sworn by himself, saith the LORD the God of hosts, I abhor the excellency of Jacob." Now, look at your footnote 8b. The word 'excellency' there, the King James translators translated but if you look at a B, it's the pride. The pride of Jacob is the issue, right. And so as a result, again, back to the Abrahamic covenant, back to the corresponding responsibilities. They're not taking care of the poor, they're not keeping the commandments, they're not uniting families for eternity, they're not inviting others to come unto Christ. And I just want to make a quick statement about that. In Exodus 19, the original plan of God is for a kingdom of priests and priestesses who will literally be a light to the nations. But they fell from that. And now God's working with them via the best He can. And now they're even falling further. So there have to be these kind of imposed consequences. And man, they are serious. Of course, He's going to deliver them up. And there's going to be lots of death.
Ross Baron 47:44
11: "For, behold, the Lord commandeth, and he will smite the great house with breaches, and the little house with clefts." And they're going to be afflicted against by other nations. And that's kind of chapter 6. So if you're at ease in Zion, there's going to be major issues.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 48:01
I just can't, I think that it's super relevant, right? That this idea that we want - I said it earlier - we want to be comfortable. We want things to be easy. And I think that we get, you know, we live in an interesting community up here in Rexburg, that we are kind of sheltered. Kind of in, you gotta love it to be here. Right. And that we're watching this a little bit, I'm super cautious because we're about to get a second Temple. And we lived in Provo when the second Temple came. And there was an ease we had to address. That there was this instead of this idea of 'wow, look at us, we get another temple; look at us, we're good. There needed to be a different kind of urgency and humility about 'look at the responsibility that the Lord trust us with, so that we're not too comfortable, but that we're going to get to work in the things that matter the most.
Yeah. Two Temples.
Ross Baron 49:03
Two temples within four miles of each other.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 49:05
Yeah, they're on the same road, right? Just straight up the street from each other. I live in the middle of them.
Ross Baron 49:11
And by the way, the second Temple is, I think, two or three times larger than the first one. Have you heard that?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 49:18
I did, yeah.
Well, my thought is with the two temple thing, you're inclined to say, Two temples, we're so blessed. But really, it's, Two temples, we gotta get to work.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 49:27
We're so trusting
We're so, there's a lot to do.
Ross Baron 49:31
Yeah, right. Okay, so going into chapter 7 now, is that okay?
Ross Baron 49:36
Okay, so what happens is in chapter 7, I think even Amos, he's being shown the captivity, he's being shown kind of how the grass is being mowed. It's a great metaphor, right? That the grass is being mowed, the Kings grass is being mowed. That's verses 1 & 2. And the idea is, of course, 'the scattering', right. We're gonna mow the grass, and it even kind of I think surprises Amos. So Amos asked the question at the end of verse 2
Ross Baron 50:04
7:2: "....O, Lord God, forgive, I beseech thee: by whom shall Jacob arise? for he is small." Meaning you have so many people have died and so many people are carried away captive. Like, will Jacob ever arise again? If you've ever pruned a rosebush, right? I know you have, right. You pruned it down. So it looks like no, there's no way that thing can recover. Right. And I think Amos sees "the mowing" of the Lord and says, Man, this pruning, there's no way Jacob can be revived. So in verse 3, there's a super significant Joseph Smith translation that we have to understand. So I like to tell my students mark that superscript 3a so that whenever you get there, you know to look below. And so again, Amos is saying, by whom shall Jacob arise? He's small. Verse 3, I'm reading the Joseph Smith translation. And the Lord said, concerning Jacob, "Jacob shall repent for this, therefore, I will not utterly destroy him, saith the LORD."
Ross Baron 51:08
And that, again, repeats itself in verse 6 the exact same phrasing. So in other words, as a result of what God's doing - because remember 2 Nephi 26:24, He's not doing anything unless it's for the benefit - this scattering, this mowing, this purging, this cleansing. It is for the benefit, and Jacob will revive. Jacob is going to come back. Now it's going to be in God's time, and it's going to be in God's way. But it's going to happen. Right? Then in verse 7,
Ross Baron 51:37
7:7 "Thus he has showed me: and, behold, the Lord stood upon a wall made by a plumbline, with a plumbine in his hand." And the idea of the plumbline is a demarcation between righteous and wicked, between those who will be saved and those who will be destroyed, between those who are scattered and between those who will not be. So He's going to demarcate out what He will preserve and what He will not preserve. That's the idea of the plumbline. By the way, John the Revelator - same thing going on in the book of Revelation, right? He sees the angel with his plumbline, right? We're gonna mark off certain areas. And so I think it's super interesting that in verses 7-9 he says, What do you see? I see a plumbline. And then he says in verse 9
Ross Baron 52:25
9 "And the high places of Isaac shall be desolate," Okay, high places. These were these false groves, where they worshiped on mountains where they were not supposed to. "and the sanctuaries of Israel shall be laid waste;" False temples, the place up in Dan. "and I will rise against the house of Jeroboam with the sword." Now, this is Jeroboam II, it's not Jeroboam I. Jeroboam I was way back right after Solomon. So this is like 150 years later, okay. But this is Jeroboam saying, Look, the high places - gone. The sanctuaries of Israel that are false that I haven't approved - gone. And by the way, Jeroboam, his house - also gone. So that's how he kind of lays it out. And that's when Amaziah comes. Amaziah comes and says, Hey, knock it off. You can't prophesy here anymore. And Amos basically says, 'Yeah, I'm going to keep prophesying', and then he prophesies evil against them.
Ross Baron 53:20
16: "Now therefore hear thou the word of the LORD: Thou sayest, Prophesy not against Israel, and drop not thy word against the house of Isaac." Boom!
Ross Baron 53:28
17: "Therefore thus saith the Lord;" and then he utters another prophecy against him. So it's just beautiful and powerful in terms of the way Amos handles all that.
I'm so grateful you brought up verse 17. Because we know that when it says, "Therefore thus saith the LORD," it's a declaration from Him, like, this is a stamp, you bet. What's being said is about to happen or come to pass or serious warning. So
Ross Baron 53:52
Yeah, the Hebrew, there's two Hebrew formulas to introduce that thing. One is KOH-AMAR ADONAI, which is literally translated 'thus says God'' right, or 'thus says the God, the Lord. And the other one is NE'UM Adonai, which is the Oracle pronouncement like, 'coming forth from God', 'I'm the mouthpiece of God'. And I love that. And one other thing I just want to say in terms of chapters 1-7, one of the things I like to tell people is this: what you're getting in Amos and Isaiah you're getting, if you ask, like, where's Amos on the page? Well, Amos is off the page, because Amos is speaking first person for God. So it's not Amos narrating. It's Amos speaking for God. If you see what I'm saying, like this is power.
Ross Baron 53:52
When you read, we read Section 1 of the Doctrine and Covenants, I always ask students, where's Joseph Smith? And they're like, What do you mean? Where's Joseph Smith on the page? I can't find him. That's right. It's the Lord speaking through His prophet. And Amos is first person, I am speaking for the Lord. Right? So he's kind of off the page except when he narrates a little bit. He does narrate a little bit about his call in this chapter, but most of the Book of Amos is Amos speaking first person for the Lord.
That is awesome. So grateful you added that.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 55:14
When do you then suppose, when is President Nelson speaking for the Lord? That in a conference talk, is he speaking for the Lord? Do we? because I think we're way too casual about Him.
Ross Baron 55:28
Oh. I agree.
That'sl a great question.
Ross Baron 55:30
And I think the answer is when President Nelson gets up in his capacity as the President of the church in General Conference, he is speaking for the Lord Himself.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 55:38
That's my point. And we're so casual. And I would say even keyholders in general, that we've got a lot of work to do with understanding who and what a keyholder is and does.
Ross Baron 55:50
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 55:50
And that, I mean, even a deacon who's a keyholder. That we've got some work to do with reverence for the, for what God has blessed us with. We read it from Amos and we're like, Yes, of course, in reverence. And we're all in on this He's speaking. But, but when it comes to the prophets that we sit at their feet, and I don't know that we have the same reverence. We don't have the same wonder and awe that God is talking to us. We have heard the words of God. We got work to do.
Well, and Jen, when you talked about, us working on our reverence for these type of things, it drew me right back to Ross' story. Because like you said, you're right, Boyd K Packer didn't care if you had a shirt or tie on. But as you told the story, Ross, your story taught me that there has to be a level of reverence, because you were about to meet an Apostle of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Ross Baron 56:49
And I feel like sometimes we forget how big of a deal that is, when we live where they always are in Utah. You leave Utah - and I grew up in Missouri, was a teenager - anybody that came to visit who was from the first part, are you kidding me? Someone's coming to visit us?
Ross Baron 57:06
President Ballard when he's down, I want to say in Central America, and it's a four o'clock Saturday Priesthood meeting, you know. And these are Saints in Central America who work like dogs, right, just to get ends meet. And he's sitting on the stand with the Stake President and other authorities. And there's all these guys in the front row with white shirts, and a brown line. Do you guys remember the story? I do, yeah. And they have a brown line. And President Ballard leans over to the stake president says, what's with the brown line? And he says, "Oh, they got up at six this morning, and had to cross rivers to get here to be in the presence of a member of the Quorum of the Twelve. That's why they all have the brown line." Oh, my word.
Yeah. That makes me emotional.
Ross Baron 57:58
Oh, my word.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 58:00
Our insensibility and our casualness about it, that we've really got to confront that. That there is, and it's a lot of work to stay in a space of wonder and awe for what God's given us. But it's, you know, that there is a prophet in Israel.
Ross Baron 58:24
But Jen, you heard me say, when we were, you and I were having a conversation about COVID. And I mentioned to you that those that had Sacrament Meeting in their homes, it was like marking the blood on your door, meaning no one counted you
Ross Baron 58:37
We taught that
Ross Baron 58:37
No one counted you. No one, there wasn't a guy, it was between you and your family and God. And that was the Lord saying, Who's marked their door? Right? I think General Conference weekend is the exact same thing. So it's between you and God. How do you how do you treat Saturday and Sunday when it's General Conference? Now I don't want to, I wouldn't want to make anybody feel guilty that has to work, I get that. But if you have the, I mean, if it's the opportunity for you to make that a Sabbath. Because in the Old Testament, Sabbath isn't just Saturday, it was all the Holy Days, wherever that day felt. And how do we treat, say General Conference as a Sabbath, as the marking our doors with the Savior's blood?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 58:37
Beautiful. Thank you.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 58:41
Well, and I can't help but think one just simple little way that we do that is the way we address them. That I'll often hear people talk about the brethren by their last name. And I bristle. I just, you want to turn me inside out? That's worse than fingernails on a chalkboard.
Ross Baron 59:39
See, this is why I love Jen. We are one on this. Well, there's another thing, too I remember. There was an issue. I won't bring up the particular issue about which I was very supportive. This was a couple of years ago and I was super supportive of this issue and had numerous conversations. I have nine children and numerous conversations at the dinner table with my children about it that I had felt a particular way. Then the First Presidency came out oppo, opposite of what I said. And my sons called me, a bunch of my sons, "Dad. What do you think?" And I said, "I was wrong." And they're like, "Wait, you gave us so many arguments at the dinner table. We had so many lengthy conversations." "I was wrong. Peter, James and John are right, I'm wrong." And they're like, "You mean, you're not gonna like fight for it?" I was like, "Absolutely not. I was wrong. They're right."
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:00:26
When the prophet speaks, the debate is over, period.
Ross Baron 1:00:30
And don't, and I would say this to my kids, by the way: Don't confuse your views with the Lord's views.
Ross Baron 1:00:37
Don't think your views are the Lord's views. 99 times out of 100 they're not, unless like Jen said earlier, you're now in line with the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve. Then your views are the Lord's views. But your views on things? They're not necessarily the Lord's views. And don't be confused by that.
Boy, well, and that makes me think of Elder Renlund's talk, "The Framework for Personal Revelation". Man, that's the one that stood out to me in October. Go back and read it.
Ross Baron 1:01:01
He's like, I don't have to pray about that, right. The guy says, Oh, yeah, this manuscripts under the, No, I don't have to pray about that.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:01:07
Or quit belaboring it.
Ross Baron 1:01:09
Yeah, we're done.
Oh, my gosh, you two are phenomenal. That was a great discussion. Thank you, Ross. Thank you for teaching us from Amos, chapters 6 & 7. And there is so much more that we could have gone over. And I apologize, because I love how Ross was like, Wait, we're not doing chapter four? And we're not doing? No, I know, we're not, we had to pick and choose. And we could talk for hours. I wish we had hours to do this. But the way you set up 6 & 7 and the discussion that came from it was perfect. So thank you to both of you. And just for the stamp again in my heart of where I stand and what I need to do. And that was worth it. So thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Okay, here we go. Then in the next segment, we are going to talk about the next book, which is Obadiah. And we're going to apply it kind of in a cool way to the world we live in today. Let's do this.
Segment 5 1:01:51
Okay, you two. Do you guys have siblings?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:01:56
Yeah, I'm the middle of seven.
Ross Baron 1:01:58
I have an older sister.
Just the two of you? Okay. I'm the oldest of five. I had to laugh when I saw this meme. So I'm going to share it with you. Because it's 100% true in my family when it comes to sibling rivalry, and who the favorite is. It says, "Parents be like, 'I don't have a favorite'". And then they use one of your siblings' birthdates as the password. That is my family 100%. My parents use my younger sister's birthday for their password for everything. And don't bother trying to find out what her birthday is anybody, because my parents have nothing to steal, so don't try to steal their identity. But, this idea of having this sibling rivalry, it kind of sets up the book of Obadiah. Let's go to Obadiah 1:1, because I was struck with the way the wording in here and especially in just verse 1, and Ross, will you read that for us, please.
Ross Baron 1:02:47
1:1 "The vision of Obadiah. Thus saith the Lord GOD concerning Edom: We have heard a rumour from the Lord, and an ambassador is sent among the heathen, Arise ye, and let us rise up against her in battle."
Okay, highlight the word Edom. You have to understand this word in order to fully appreciate the book of Obadiah. And there's a couple of things about this word. So there is this brotherly rivalry between Jacob and Esau. We learned about that back in Genesis 25. Edom is Esau. And so that's kind of the connection here. But I thought was really powerful for me, we have Edom as a nation, and it had often been the enemy of Israel and Judah. And as a result, the very name Edom, or in Greek form, it's IDUMEA. And you can also read that word and Doctrine and Covenants 1:36. It has come to symbolize the world. So the rivalry then between Edom - who is Esau, and Jacob - who is Israel, to me in the book of Obadiah, really is about this rivalry between God's covenant people and the world. And so there's so much stuff in Obadiah. And I just want you to both like, start telling us about Obadiah and the things that we need to know especially that his name in Hebrew means 'servant of God'. How does this apply?
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:04:05
Tammy, we've talked about this this before. Anytime there's talk of a family, you've got my attention, that I'm gonna pay a lot of attention to family and the way that God works with His family. And so these two brothers becoming metaphors - the world and the house of Israel. And our work then is about saving God's family.
I really like that connection, Jen, about why He was so concerned with this group that was with Edom is that he was part of Esau's family. That makes a lot of sense.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:04:38
Well, and whether he is literally or not, he loves and he cares. And it's like, I'm not going to pick and choose. I'm not selective in who I love, I want everyone to have a chance of redemption, of salvation of exultation.
Ross Baron 1:04:53
Well, and if you look at if we, if we take the Edomites and you talk about the story of Jacob and Esau. Esau, of course, marries out of the covenant and upsets his parents, etc. But there's eventual kind of softening and redemption and love between Jacob and Esau, right. And this story seems to be saying there's going to be some serious trouble for Edomites. Like, it's like hard to read, but there's going to be redemption. We're going to have saviors on Mount Zion, they are going to be part of the family again, right? In other words, this to me is the idea - the Edomites, they're gonna go through serious refining and we don't even know, I mean, you know, in terms of the scattering. But the Jacob and Esau story, if that's a foreshadowing of what Obadiah is eventually talking about, then, yeah, we've got some hope for the future. Because Esau becomes a pretty great guy, right? I mean, in the end. And they reconcile and have this beautiful story. And Esau actually has a pretty generous and gracious heart and then Jacob's able to kind of, they're, able to reconcile, and I think that's what's going on here.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:06:01
Well, what you've just said to me, I mean, it gives me a lot of peace, that sometimes we we feel just devastated that our loved ones are straying or struggling. We are not done yet. And for us to be able to get that big picture, it's never over, and I'm not going to force or coerce or tell you what to do. But I know the power that can come into people's lives, I've seen the power. And to know that God, God's not giving up on anyone, I'm not gonna give up on anyone. They've got to work their process just like Esau. I like how you did that there, right? To go, let's look at what happened between Esau and Jacob and you said he became a pretty good guy. Well, I think we're going to be pretty surprised on the other side of our loved ones that are exalted. And that there's space for all.
Well, especially in light if Edom is the world, and that's who he's prophesying to, and that's who the prophets are speaking to. He doesn't just speak to members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Our Prophet is a prophet, seer, and revelator for the entire world, speaking to them, loving them, hoping that they will have an Esau outcome, turning out to be like you said, a pretty good guy.
Ross Baron 1:07:14
But let's be, let's be clear, though. I think that's cool. I liked the way you said that. So if in fact we're talking about kind of layered symbolism here, right, we're talking about many, there's kind of many things going on at once the way the Hebrew prophets do it. So if Edom is the world, Edom will be destroyed. In other words, the world's going to be destroyed. The telestial kingdom has to be destroyed. And then the millennium is a terrestrial world. But with that said, the idea of saviors on mount Zion is the capacity to be able to redeem even those to either before or during, so that they can come up to a higher level, whatever level they're willing to come up to. But we should be clear - Idumea, right? That's the modern for Edom, Section 1 of the Doctrine and Covenants, man, it's going to be destroyed. And by the way, Obadiah, like if you read, there's some scary stuff here.
Ross Baron 1:08:06
Verse 18, "And the house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau for stubble, and they shall kindle in them, and devour them; and there shall not be any remaining of the house of Esau; for the LORD hath spoken it." Again, anybody who remains in the world, that's section 87 of the Doctrine and Covenants, the wheat and the tares. Anybody who remains in the world in Babylon, they're destroyed. But we get to choose that. It's not something, you know, forced on us. And it's not something predestined at all. That's false doctrine.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:08:36
Well, that's the important thing you said, we get to choose. We get to choose and there's always a choice. It's never too late. It's never too far gone. We get to choose.
Ross Baron 1:08:46
Well, and we get to choose. So, I mean, there might in all of us as we struggle to follow the Savior fully, there might be a lot of Esau in us, right? There's still some tare that we're working out to become the kind of wheat that we need to be. And I love 2 Peter, in chapter three where he says, "The Lord is not slack concerning His promises, as some men count slackness, but as long suffering to us word, not willing that any should perish, but all come to repentance." What a great verse, right? And that's your point, Jen, like He, He's going to, but you know, like Elder Holland said, 'It's never too late as long as The Master says there's time. Right? There's a point at which the vineyard gets burned.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:09:34
Fire, there's our fire from Amos.
There's our fire.
Ross Baron 1:09:37
But you won't get burned until you've had an opportunity.
Ross Baron 1:09:40
Right? Section 1 of the Doctrine and Covenants, "Every ear shall hear, every eye shall see, and every heart shall be penetrated." So if you choose not to it's because you chose not to. Not because you were tricked, or, I love section 137 when it says the idea that your salvation doesn't depend on when you died. Does that make sense? See, the Protestant idea is that, Oh, man. If you died and you never heard the gospel, but you know, too bad. That's not the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. That's not restoration theology. Right? It's not dependent on when you died. It's dependent on when you had the full opportunity to embrace the gospel. And Jen, this goes back to your point. So even people in the kingdom, people that have strayed, listen, what constitutes rejecting the gospel - that's 100% between God and that person.
Wow, and how much do I love the Scripture off, it's in Deuteronomy, and then we read it again in Acts. And then it's in 3 Nephi when the Savior comes in. He says, the people who don't follow the Prophet, it will be required of you. Like why didn't you follow the Prophet? And then if you didn't, you're going to be cut off. And then I love so much that when Moroni comes to Joseph Smith, he quotes that exact scripture and then says to Joseph, "That day has not yet come."
Ross Baron 1:10:53
No one's been cut off.
Ross Baron 1:10:55
No one, not yet. So there's still a chance, there's still opportunities. And so with that discussion, then, in the next segment, we are going to focus on one verse of scripture, which sums everything up in Obadiah and what we've been talking about when it comes to opportunities to hear and the role that we play in that. And Jen is going to lead us in that discussion next.
Segment 6 1:11:13
Okay, Jen, lead us into a discussion about Obadiah 1:21.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:11:23
Thank you. First, let's read the verse. Well, Tammy, why don't you read it for us.
1:21 "And saviours shall come up on Mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the LORD'S.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:11:34
I love that phrase, "Saviours shall come up on Mount Zion". And the verse of Mount Zion is going to come up in verse 17. And it's drawing us to the Holy Temple, this deliverance that's coming to the wicked. And the footnote, of course, it's taking us to genealogy and temple work and the mission of the latter days. So it's the Abrahamic responsibilities, that our work then is to save. And by virtue of our covenant, we partner with Jesus Christ to become little s saviors. And I want to, I just want to spend a couple of minutes with a couple couple of ideas. I've spent several years teaching Introduction to Family History class. And I just, I want to stay just very clearly and directly, there is a power that comes in our lives when we engage in family history work. It's unmatched, and I have witnessed miracles. I will teach this class, I think, the rest of my career, because I feel like it's my moment in the middle of the day to punch through the veil. And I'll start every class and I'll say, let's be sure to recognize those that are present with us today that are seen, and are not seen. And I want to share with you this quote from Joseph F. Smith. And I read it, I read it a lot. I think about it a lot.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:12:50
He says, "I believe we move and have our beings in the presence of heavenly messengers and of heavenly beings. We are not separate from them. We're closely related to our kindred, to our ancestors who have preceded us into the spirit world. We cannot forget them. We do not cease to love them. We always hold them in our hearts in memory, and thus we are associated and united to them by ties that we cannot break. If this is the case with us, in our finite condition, surrounded by our mortal weaknesses, how much more certain it is to believe that those who have been faithful, who have gone beyond can see us better than we can see them, that they know us better than we know them. We live in their presence. They see us. They're solicitous for our welfare. They love us now more than ever, for now they see the dangers that beset us. Their love for us and their desire for our well-being must be greater than that which we feel for ourselves." And that's the close of the quote. This is Joseph F. Smith. And the source on that is from a 1916 Conference report.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:14:03
Now, here's this idea of being a savior on Mount Zion, and certainly they need us, they need us to do something for them that they can't do for themselves, which is covenants if they've passed and not lived in the context of being able to enter into a temple. But there's a reciprocity. There's a power that comes as we take care of them, and as we seek after them, and as we do the work for them. I have witnessed this; I witness it almost daily, that this idea of being able to say, you know, that the spirit of of Elijah starts to work in us and that we can't bear the thought of someone, anyone to not have these covenants. Ross, how many temple names do you have right now? You usually show me your little stack. Where are you at, brother?
Ross Baron 1:14:59
I just did five this morning for initiatory; I've got five more. And I've got about 100 and, I don't know, 110 or 15 in the queue.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:15:10
Why? Tell tell us a little bit about your burden.
Ross Baron 1:15:12
Well I like you, I mean, I, #1 I feel a, I feel , so back to burden if we can tie it back to Amos. So I feel the burden, but in a good way, right. And so what you're talking about now is Abrahamic covenant. We're talking about uniting families for eternity, which is God's work, which goes to President Nelson. There's no more important work anywhere. It's not Microsoft, it's not Amazon, it's not Google. It is to unite families for eternity and to invite all to come unto Christ, right? There is no more important work. So when you say why, and you've talked about, and I give my second witness to what you said, if you involve yourself in temple and family histor work, there's a power that comes in your life, a peace, a settledness, a light that comes that can't come in any other way.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:16:03
Yeah. Well, and I think even for you, you're the only member, you know, and so you have, you have an obligation or a burden that's, that's greater than maybe someone like me who has generations, right? Tammy, what's your experience been? I mean, you received an endowment as a single woman, lived single. What's been your experience with the blessings of being a savior on Mount Zion, getting yourself into the Temple?
I mean, it, it served me the whole time I was single. And I remember setting a goal, which was to me now, married with kids seems like the craziest thing in the world. But when I was single, my goal was to go once a week, and I did it. And I look back at that time in my life, and I, I feel like it filled my spiritual bucket that I would need when I'd married into instant family - two kids. I couldn't get to the temple. And I definitely felt strengthen from beyond the veil on so many levels. Not just my ancestors, but also with, you know, a deceased mom who was still loving her daughters. And I felt that uniting of families, I still feel it as I'm raising these girls. There's no way to deny that. In fact, what stood out to me in your quote, Jen was when you said, "they are solicitous for our welfare." I can't tell you how many times I have prayed for help beyond the veil. One person one time said to me, is it like mothering beyond the veil? Like there's no other way to describe it, because I don't know how to do this. And I'm counting on all my ancestors and Michelle to help me raise these kids. Connecting to them through temple work is the only way that I can do that.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:17:43
Isn't that stunning? So check this out. This is from the Prophet Joseph when he's talking specifically about Obadiah 1:21. "But how are they to become saviors on Mount Zion? By building their temples, erecting their baptismal fonts, and going forth and receiving all the ordinances, baptisms, confirmations, washings, anointings, ordinations, and sealings. Power upon their heads in behalf of all their progenitors who are dead, and redeem them, that they may come forth in the first resurrection and be exalted to thrones of glory with them. And therein is the chain that binds the hearts of the fathers to the children and the children to the fathers, which fulfills the mission of Elijah. The Saints have not too much time to save and redeem their dead and gather together their living relatives that they may be saved also, before the earth will be smitten, and the consummation decreed falls upon the world."
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:18:36
I don't know that, I don't know that we really get the urgency that there is an urgency in this, and saying, I can't, I can't rest, I can't really rest until I know I've done all I can to reach after my dead. And I tell my students, I and I'll say it in this context, as well. Put away Facebook and get into Family Search. I call it Facebook for the dead. And that we get in there and that we spend a couple minutes every day just in Family Search. They've done so much work with that app. and with the software. Can you imagine? Can you imagine thinking about generations before us looking at us, shaking their heads saying, You wouldn't believe the hours I spent shuffling through little boxes and making cards and drawing pedigree charts, and you've got an app in your hand? Right? We've got to get to work. And so I would say my invitation would be that we all make sure we know how to get into Family Search.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:19:36
And then just one thing that I would say, just try working the tasks. Just get into Family Search, and say - and it's easy to find, I'm going to walk you through it, right? Because I want everyone within the sound of my voice that they'll just get in this habit. You only search and if you look at the bottom, if you're on the iPhone, the android's going to be similar, and you'll see there's just a little box with a check in it. And it's called tasks. And it's the low-hanging fruit, where you can go through and you start to become familiar with your people. You're learning their names, you're learning who they are. And then there's going to be little icons that tells me there's information that can be connected to this person that's going to help them to be able to get to the Temple. And in the meantime - and I find this to be the case - I work tasks every day for at least 10 minutes a day. It's just part of my daily routine that I get in the tasks and 10 minutes a day.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:20:35
And without fail, at least once a week, I find a family member that's not listed in Family Search. And it shows up from a census record, it shows up from some information that Family Search has linked to my family, and I've prepared her or him to be saved. And you know, I think we want it to be more dramatic; I think we want it to be a bigger deal. Jesus was in the ordinary and so am I. And if I can just be about my Father's business in these small and simple ways, and then together the saviors on Mount Zion, and that will judge the mount of Esau. So I'm the world and the kingdom shall be the Lord's. I belong to the kingdom of God on earth. I'm all in. And for me to have this chance to say let me help build it on both sides of the veil is really quite remarkable. And what a message for Obadiah to get us towards, to say, Let me just land your souls right here in the work of salvation and exultation, and that it can be through small and simple things. .
Thank you, I'm writing what you just said. That's a perfect way to end that. "Let me land your souls right here" on verse 21. It's not lost on me. How perfect that verse is to end Obadiah, so thank you.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:22:02
There's such relevancy in all of this, that as we go through and look at the ancient texts, that really it is drawing us to the work of hastening on both sides of the veil, and that the tools, the resources, all the things that have been made so accessible to us, just a matter of choosing how we're going to spend our time.
Well, and Obadiah's name meaning 'servant of God' is what we all become, going back to that idea that we started with. When you become a savior on Mount Zion, you become an Obadiah. And how are we doing with that name? So that's great. Thank you, Jen. Thank you so much. That's the end you guys, that's it. So I always ask my guests when we're finished, just to take a minute. Gather your thoughts and what's one takeaway from today's discussion? One thing that struck you or one thing that you'll remember from our discussion.
Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt 1:22:52
I guess I'll go i Ross, thank you for just even that simple languaging of the Abrahamic responsibilities, that we sometimes forget that a covenant, you know, we talk about the two-way promise, but the promise really is that I've got a work to do. And that being conscientious about that, being present to that? I like lists, I like things delineated, and the Abrahamic responsibility's anchoring me to Chapter One of the Handbook of Instruction. It gives me a clear path forward. So thanks, bud. That was great.
That was great.
Ross Baron 1:23:29
For me, I think, again, just having the conversation with everybody here, the Majesty in the magnificence of God's plan, the restoration in the latter days. You know, Jen, you talking about Obadiah 21. And that beautiful language of landing our souls as saviors in Mount Zion. And then the quote from the Prophet Joseph that you quoted, can I just say that that prophetic commentary on verse 21, you will not find anywhere in any academic commentary on verse 21. Right? In other words, the Prophet Joseph's commentary on verse 21 - and then by the way, if you look at the Citation Index - 142 prophets have commented on verse 21. But you have to understand, if you and I went to a theology convention at Harvard, or, you know, they would not understand verse 21, and neither would we without the restoration and without the Prophet Joseph Smith.
Ross Baron 1:23:29
And so just this and how it connects. Think about Isaiah chapter 2, "We will walk in his paths." Where? In a temple, right? So we're going to establish a Temple in the latter-days, and then we're going to walk in His paths. How do you walk in His paths? As saviors on Mount Zion. It's the only way that scripture can be fulfilled. There's no other way. So I'm going to do what they can't do for themselves. So in a small, small, small way I'm going to be doing for them what they couldn't do, just like Jesus did a vicarious work for all of us. Right? So that's what impacts me.
Thank you. Thank you to both of you. So my takeaway is Jennifer, when you said we weren't meant to be comfortable, but we are promised to be comforted. Because I felt like right now, this is so real right now, because there are things going on that are uncomfortable. And there are prayers being said, that address a level of uncomfortableness for many of us and many of my friends, and it's hard. And so when you said that, I thought, The uncomfortable thing that made me uncomfortable, and you said that. I'm like, Yeah, but we're not supposed to be uncomfortable. And then you follow it up with but we're promised to be comforted. And I do believe that, I believe that is the role of the Holy Ghost, and that he will comfort us in our uncomfortableness and that I am grateful for. So that really resonated in my heart. And I'm so thankful for that moment. And that what the Spirit taught me through all of that, thank you, you two.
That's it. We're done. Okay, you guys are awesome. I appreciate that discussion. Wow, that was so good. Okay, well, we would love to hear what your big takeaway was from this episode. So if you haven't already joined our discussion group on Facebook, and if you're not following us on Instagram, go do it. It is such a great place to ask questions as you study, and to even just share throughout the week, some of the things you're learning and then on Saturday, we do a post asking for your big takeaway from this episode, which I can only imagine is so much because Jen and Ross knocked it out of the park. So comment on the post that relates to this lesson and let us know what you've learned.
You can get to both our Facebook and Instagram by going to the show notes for this episode on LDS living.com/sunday on Monday, and if you go there, you can also find the links to the references that we used and that my guests used, as well as the transcript of this whole discussion. So go check it out. The Sunday on Monday Study Group is a Desert Bookshelf Plus original brought to you by LDS Living. It's written and hosted by me Tammy Uzelac Hall, and today our incredible study group participants were Jennifer Brinkerhoff Platt and Ross Baron. And you can find more information about my friends at LDS living.com/sunday on Monday. Our podcast is produced by Cole Wissinger and me; it is edited by Hiailey Higham, and recorded and mixed by Mix at Six Studios. And our executive producer is Erin Hallstrom. Thanks for being here. We'll see you next week.
And please remember: you really are God's favorite.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai