Monday, April 13, 2009

The Four Corners of the Earth

In Sunday School this week we were discussing the “gathering” or the "gathering of Israel." The question was asked about the “four quarters” of the earth, or the “four corners” of the earth.

I did not volunteer my answer because I thought it too complicated for a one-sentence answer, and concluded it would be better not to appear as the crazy guy in the back of the room, again.

I see these phrases as part of a larger, and mostly lost understanding of Israelite theology and imagery. In Kabalistic thought there are really only two things in physicality; “Creation” (existence, dividing, and scattering), and the “Chariot” (gathering, uniting, at-one-ing).

The imagery of the Tree of Life first shown in Eden has a river that flows from it, and it flows to the entire physical universe. It is the blessings of God. It is the power that maintains existence, it’s the laws of physics, it is the knowledge that saves, it is the power to exalt, it is covenants, it’s our gospel heritage.

This river immediately divides into four parts. These parts correspond to the four estates of man, or the Celestial, Terrestrial, Telestial Kingdoms, and Outer Darkness (non-redeemed state). All of these, even outer darkness is maintained by this flow.

Some would argue that tribes of the earth generally, as a group, adhere to one of these kingdoms.

Going to the four corners of the earth, would be analogous to following one of the four rivers to where that tribe exists, and preaching the gospel there. This is associated with the prophecy that the gospel would go to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people (tribe).

Going to every tribe is a fairly new phenomenon. It was not always so. Even Jesus resisted teaching the gospel to those of questionable breeding. This latter-day process of taking the gospel to all four quarters is associated with the Abrahamic covenant. The Abrahamic Covenant is the means of salvation and exaltation. You can’t be a child of God and reject the Abrahamic Covenent.

The seed for this covenant is inserted by the blood of Israel being planted into each tribe by the scattering of Israel (intermarrying)(linage), or by individuals accepting the covenant and being adopted. (see Israel, LDS Topical Guide)

This idea of the four rivers is demonstrated in Ezekiel 47 where the river coming from the Temple exists in four depths. Nephi saw the river coming from the Tree of Life in levels of purity (REF). This water is also associated with final things as we see in Revelation 22. This idea can also be soon in many simple teachings and parables such as the Parable of the Sower, with its four outcomes.

Through this process, all the world will be blessed.


Anonymous said...


but as of ONE SEED not the race or races

16 Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ.

29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.

Some? SOME who? Race? white Right?

"Some would argue that tribes of the earth generally, as a group, adhere to one of these kingdoms."

Are you or the "SOME" implying white and pure and delightsome and fair like the Nazis or the Jews that killed Jesus?

Shem Ham Japeth?
African Mexicans Japanese Chinese English Germans French Persian Hindi ?
Mongoloid? Causcoid? Nigroid?

Please explain which Groups or Tribes adhere to which kingdoms?

David Littlefield said...

Here is another view of the same topic: Beleive All Things.

You might also take a peek at D&C 77:2-3.


Anonymous said...

He to whom God has given the will and the ability
to know in this way the Divine mystery through the
eternal monuments of literature and to finish with
great tranquillity this work on the 25th January, hav-
ing commenced it on the 13th of the same month.
In the year 1564 at Antwerp.

Anonymous said...

gazelam said...

What if we looked beyond the world being “flat” geographic map, and used a more "Eternal" map.

If we use a Cartesian graph,
We use the X,Y, Z axis =
West-East, North-South, Up-Down.
Each axis is to the Square of the other,
or in other words, 90 degrees.
Each extends into infinity in their respective directions.
This accounts for 3 corners or our “Eternal” map.

Enter the next 4th corner or 4th Dimension = time.
From Every Lasting – To Ever Lasting.

Thus, the gathering from the 4 corners is a gathering everywhere.
This also takes into account the literal gathering of everyone who ever was,
to everyone who ever will be….
Temple work makes even more sense, IMHO.

David Littlefield said...

Thanks Gazelim. Very interesting insights.


Stephanie A. Quinn said...

I have been following your blog for a while now and truly enjoy your insight. I am very intrigued with your idea of the the river of Eden being divided into 4 rivers which woudl be the division of the 3 degrees of glory and outer Darkness. I think this is a fascinating idea! Is this your own idea or have you read this somewhere? If Eden is elevated (mountain top) would that mean that Eden would be somehow a part of each of the kindgoms?

David Littlefield said...


What level of understanding I might have is built upon the gracious teachings of others, and personal revelation. That being said, I am not sure I have read anyone else who understands the rivers exactly the way I do.

You might also find this interesting: Living Waters

And here is a related discussion: Heavenly Ascents



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