Thursday, February 28, 2008

Ascension - Do you get it?


As a missionary I taught the Plan of salvation so, so many times, but I really never “got it,” until much later in life. I mean I was good at quoting the scriptures (served in the bible belt) and arguing for it. You could not tell, but I still really did not get it. I mean I understood the mechanics, but not the deep meaning.

I look at the prophets, most of them initially had some training in the gospel, but at some point in their lives they got it. They usually got it in the form of a vision, they saw the Plan of Salvation (pre-earth, earth, spirit world, the resurrection, and the degrees of glory).

Abraham stopped by Bethel (Beth = House, EL=God) and made sacrifice. Abraham received the promises that we currently call the Abrahamic Covenant. He then sees all about the pre-existence and the creation, all the way to the end of creation. What he learned included:
 
 “[T]he grand Key-words of the Holy Priesthood, as revealed to Adam in the Garden of Eden, as also to Seth, Noah, Melchizedek, Abraham, and all to whom the Priesthood was revealed.” [Book of Abraham, Explanation of Facsimile No. 2]

The Plan of Salvation when personalized is tied to the temple (alter, sacrifice, ordinances), promises, covenants, and a vision of the Plan. In fact it is a revealing of God to the individual.

Moses “got it,” the Lord took Moses to an “exceedingly high mountain,” which is a cosmic temple. There, Moses is taught of the Messiah, he saw every particle of the earth and every soul who had or will live upon this earth. He saw the creation, all the way to the end of creation (including the Garden of Eden drama). He saw the pre-existence and the war in heaven. Moses saw the “Plan of salvation.” Moses saw that all of these were “confirmed unto Adam, by an holy ordinance…” [Moses 5:59]

Nephi got it in the form of a tree, Jacob go it in the form of a ladder, and the list goes on.

Today, we receive the ordinances in the temple, we receive an abbreviated teaching of the Plan of Salvation which stands for the full plan, and if ready, God can reveal Himself to us there. But usually it is somewhat a mass production. Most of us receive the ordinances and the teaching when we go to the temple, but we don’t really get it.

If we are blessed, at some point in our life, we get it. When you get it, it will change your life.

Do you get it?

16 comments:

David Littlefield said...

I sometimes wonder what it would have been like to have really been ready for the temple. To have the ordinances, the teachings, the covenants, and the blessing pronounced upon me, and actually have some understanding of what they meant.

But like most, it came here and there over the course of years. And I hope it continues to come.

-David

Anonymous said...

God's Creation or Natures Mutation?
God has a plan and I do not see salvation as a chain of Mutations or an Evolving. Nor is Salvation a Mutation.

Brigham Young Shares words of Wisdom with those who embrace Mutation as Salvation

"Here let me state to all philosophers of every class upon the earth, When you tell me that father Adam was made as we make adobies from the earth, you tell me what I deem an idle tale. When you tell me that the beasts of the field were produced in that manner, you are speaking idle words devoid of meaning. There is no such thing in all the eternities where the Gods dwell. Mankind are here because they are the offspring of parents who were first brought here from another planet, and power was given them to propagate their species, and they were commanded to multiply and replenish the earth. The offspring of Adam and Eve are commanded to take the rude elements, and, by the knowledge God has given, to convert them into everything required for their life, health, adornment, wealth, comfort, and consolation. Have we the knowledge to do this? We have. Who gave us this knowledge? Our Father who made us; for he is the only wise God, and to him we owe allegiance; to him we owe our lives. He has brought us forth and taught us all we know. We are not indebted to any other power or God for all our great blessings.'

What a Blessed Speech By the Prophet!!!!!!!!!!!!

David Littlefield said...

Anon:

Yes that was a nice speech by Pres. Young. To bad it did not have anything to do with the topic of this post.

Obviously you still don't "get it."

-David

Tom Irvine said...

Maybe off-topic...

I have never had a vision in the classic angelic or burning bush sense. But I do have a "vision" that many overlooked prophecies in the Book of Mormon and Isaiah can be fulfilled. (I am trying to make this happen in my own quixotic way by translating the Book of Mormon into Hebrew and posting it at my website. I had a "vision" of sorts when I discovered the LDS church does not offer one.)

I also have a "vision" that we can (resume) understanding the scriptures in the manner in which they were originally intended, rather than continuously deconstructing them into mind-numbing homilies about the "sin du jour."

* * * *

I was listening to a recording of Isaiah 11 this week and heard from verse 7, "...and the lion will eat straw like the ox." I realized for the first time what this verse really meant. Judah, the Lion, would unite with and be at peace with Ephraim, the Ox.

This interpretation is further supported by Isaiah 11:13.

Also, our Sunday School teacher today said that 2 Nephi 10:3 was the first mention of the name "Christ" in the Book of Mormon. I thought this was rather silly because Christ comes from the Greek "Khristos," meaning the anointed one. It is the Greek form of the Hebrew Messiah (Masiah). That Nephi and his brother Jacob knew Greek is doubtful. Rather Nephi states that his learning was of of the "Jews and the language of the Egyptians." (1 Nephi 1:2). The first reference to the name "Christ" would thus be "the coming of a Messiah" in 1 Nephi 1:19. I am thus translating Christ as Masiah in my Hebrew Book of Mormon.

(Yes, I realize Joseph Smith was inspired to use "Christ" explicitly in certain passages in the English Book of Mormon.)

* * * *

Well those of us with "vision" can be expect a great deal of opposition. (1 Nephi 5:2-4) But we will save those stories for another day.

Elijah Sandalphon said...

TI: (I am trying to make this happen in my own quixotic way by translating the Book of Mormon into Hebrew and posting it at my website. I had a "vision" of sorts when I discovered the LDS church does not offer one.)

ES- You may want to check this out
http://restorationbookstore.org/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=ppa02012&Category_Code=02

This a Hebrew BoM from the RLDS church.

molly said...

Do we 'get it' at different levels? I got it. I seem to be getting it again. lol. I like to visit and read your posts. I expect more "aha! moments" here.

Tom Irvine said...

I appreciate your rebuttal.

I am not hostile in any way. I am grateful to the church and its leaders.

Israel means "one who struggles with God." Jacob through his own struggle with God came to know God.

A woman undergoes great pain as she gives birth to a child.

We need to appreciate the struggles more.

Tom Irvine

David Littlefield said...

Tom:

Then I am with you!

For some it comes more naturally, but for me and evidently for you, it is often a struggle.

My best,

-David

David Littlefield said...

Tom:

In fact, I have been thinking on this subject of struggling for a while, and I'm going to post on it soon.

-David

David Littlefield said...

Molly:

Yes it does seem we have spiritual awakenings at different levels.

Now what seems like it would be of value is if we could analyze why we did not get to each new awakening faster, and correct that problem so we could move thru this process faster and with less pain.

-David

Doc said...

Great post David,
I feel my mind open up when I read this stuff. It's beautiful, sorry to see you have your unfortunate share of trolls. Best of luck both on blogging, and ascending to new levels of awareness.

David Littlefield said...

Thanks Doc!

Its great to see you here. I visit your site on a regular basis. Keep up the good work.

-David

Tom Irvine said...

I am still somewhat concerned that my comments were misinterpreted (probably my own fault).

I would never, ever look down upon someone who had less knowledge than myself.

Also, my attitude towards the church leaders is "Don't blame the messengers." Any problem is with us, not with them.

Jesus Christ was and is the greatest teacher ever. He visited the ancient Nephites at the city of Bountiful, as a resurrected being. There, he taught the people plain, simple and precious truths similar to the Sermon on the Mount and the Beatitudes. We should all strive for such plainness in our teaching.

Then.... Christ taught the Nephites the words of Isaiah (3 Nephi 22) and commanded them to search the words of Isaiah diligently (3 Nephi 23:1).

So I suggest that in many of our lessons there should be room for both the simple truths and the deeper meanings of the scriptures.

* * * *

I appreciate that some people have had great spiritual awakenings in the Temple. My own awakenings have come from the scriptures. We are blessed to have both sources.

* * * *

Chronicles of the Nephites is an important work, but it is not available in an online form.

My online Hebrew Book of Mormon is only intended as a seed-planting, temporary resource until such time as the LDS church publishes an official version. Then my own work can be relegated to the scholarly equivalent of a 1950s era roadside attraction. I am Don Quixote.

David Littlefield said...

Tom:

Thanks for the clarification. I am sure I jumped the gun.

If you like I can erase those comments that could be misinterpreted, or I can let them stand with their their clarification. If you would like me to edit them, just let me know.

Thanks,

David

David Littlefield said...

Tom:

My most sincere apologies,

I just reread you post where you said "I am trying to make this happen in my own quixotic way by translating the Book of Mormon into Hebrew and posting it at my website. I had a "vision" of sorts when I discovered the LDS church does not offer one."

I took what you said to mean the church had no vision to offer, but obviously now I see that you meant the Hebrew Book of Mormon. So it's me who needs to repent. If your ever in Los Angeles, let me buy you lunch.

Thanks,

David

David Littlefield said...

Tom:

I took out my comments above, because i think they may continue a mis understanding of what you said, which was completely my mistake.

Thank you for remarks.

-David