Where We Are on the Prophetic Timeline: The Times of Types and Shadows


Not too long ago I came across a post from the Upward Thought blog called, The Seals of the Book of Revelation Do Not Represent Each 1000 Years, and, to be honest, I just skimmed through it at the time, but I caught that it put forth the idea that the seals mentioned by John the Revelator were still future events and that D&C 77 wasn’t reliable information.  I discounted the latter idea (about D&C 77) but decided to review the book of Revelation later concerning the seals.  I then forgot all about it.

Then I published the last post (The definition of eternal) and I found myself quoting from section 77 of the Doctrine and Covenants, so I thought maybe I ought not to put off looking at the book of Revelation and D&C 77 and also other prophetic timelines.  The new scriptural search I did took my old beliefs concerning these things and tossed them right out the window.  I now have a new understanding, which I will share right now.

I will use today’s date [Monday, March 21, 2016] and insert it into each of these prophetic timelines to show where we are.

John’s apocalyptic book of Revelation

Past

JST Rev. 4:1After this I looked, and behold, a door was opened into heaven; and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said,

Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter.

Present

[Monday, March 21, 2016]

Future

Revelation 4:2 and on.

Explanation:  Everything John saw, whether it was in the extreme future—(for example: JST Rev. 4:6“And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal” and D&C 77:1“Q. What is the sea of glass spoken of by John, 4th chapter, and 6th verse of the Revelation?  A. It is the earth, in its sanctified, immortal, and eternal state.)—or in the extreme past (for example: JST Rev. 12:6“And there was war in heaven;”) were to signify “things which must be hereafter,” meaning after the time of John’s vision.

The Revelation of John is the revelation of the seven seals and the events that take place once these seals are opened:

D&C 77:6Q. What are we to understand by the book which John saw, which was sealed on the back with seven seals?

A. We are to understand that it contains the revealed will, mysteries, and the works of God; the hidden things of his economy concerning this earth during the seven thousand years of its continuance, or its temporal existence.

7Q. What are we to understand by the seven seals with which it was sealed?

A. We are to understand that the first seal contains the things of the first thousand years, and the second also of the second thousand years, and so on until the seventh.

The first seal, then, is a revelation of the “will, mysteries, and the works of God; the hidden things of his economy concerning this earth during the first thousand years of its continuance, or its temporal existence.”  The second seal is a revelation of the “will, mysteries, and the works of God; the hidden things of his economy concerning this earth during the second thousand years of its continuance, or its temporal existence.”  And so on until the seventh.

After each seal is opened, or after each revelation is unfolded in the eyes of the people, John saw events happen on earth.  These events were future to him.

When are the earthly events associated with the opening of these seals supposed to happen?  The Book of Mormon gives us the answer:

Ether 4:13Come unto me, O ye Gentiles, and I will show unto you the greater things, the knowledge which is hid up because of unbelief.

14Come unto me, O ye house of Israel, and it shall be made manifest unto you how great things the Father hath laid up for you, from the foundation of the world; and it hath not come unto you, because of unbelief.

15Behold, when ye shall rend that veil of unbelief which doth cause you to remain in your awful state of wickedness, and hardness of heart, and blindness of mind, then shall the great and marvelous things which have been hid up from the foundation of the world from you—yea, when ye shall call upon the Father in my name, with a broken heart and a contrite spirit, then shall ye know that the Father hath remembered the covenant which he made unto your fathers, O house of Israel.

16And then shall my revelations which I have caused to be written by my servant John be unfolded in the eyes of all the people. Remember, when ye see these things, ye shall know that the time is at hand that they shall be made manifest in very deed.

So, first the Book of Mormon has to come forth (and remember, this hasn’t happened, yet.)  Then, the Lord’s people must rend the veil of unbelief.  Once that happens, the seals will begin to be opened and the revelations of each of the thousand years will be given to the saints, and the accompanying earth events associated with these revelations will go forth.

Again, when do these seals get opened?

D&C 77:10Q. What time are the things spoken of in this [7th] chapter to be accomplished?

A. They are to be accomplished in the sixth thousand years, or the opening of the sixth seal.

12Q. What are we to understand by the sounding of the trumpets, mentioned in the 8th chapter of Revelation?

A. We are to understand that as God made the world in six days, and on the seventh day he finished his work, and sanctified it, and also formed man out of the dust of the earth, even so, in the beginning of the seventh thousand years will the Lord God sanctify the earth, and complete the salvation of man, and judge all things, and shall redeem all things, except that which he hath not put into his power, when he shall have sealed all things, unto the end of all things; and the sounding of the trumpets of the seven angels are the preparing and finishing of his work, in the beginning of the seventh thousand years—the preparing of the way before the time of his coming.

13Q. When are the things to be accomplished, which are written in the 9th chapter of Revelation?

A. They are to be accomplished after the opening of the seventh seal, before the coming of Christ.

So the events associated with the opening of the first six seals take place during the sixth thousand years, while the events associated with the opening of the seventh seal take place “in the beginning of the seventh thousand years.”

Given that none of these things have occurred yet, we can assume that the “meridian of time” in which Jesus came is an uncounted portion of these thousands of years.  As there were 4,000 years before the birth of Christ, this means that the fifth thousand years began in AD 33 and the sixth thousand years began in AD 1033 and will end in 2033.  So, between now [March 21, 2016] and April 6th, 2033, the events associated with the opening of the first six seals must take place, and the events associated with the opening of the seventh seal will take place after April 6th, 2033.

In other words, not a single thing from the book of Revelations has happened, yet.  What we—and all the Christians and others who look at the book of Revelation and then say, “Prophecy is happening before our very eyes!”—are seeing are merely types and shadows.

Now, going back to the Upward Thought blog and actually reading it this time, it seems that the idea for the seals being events future to John actually comes from Joseph Smith himself.  So, I guess I’m in good company on this.  Quoting from that blog post:

It turns out we do have teachings from Joseph Smith on the Book of Revelation outside of D&C 77. This comes from “Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith”:

There is a grand difference and distinction between the visions and figures spoken of by the ancient prophets, and those spoken of in the revelations of John. The things which John saw had no allusion to the scenes of the days of Adam, Enoch, Abraham or Jesus, only so far as is plainly represented by John, and clearly set forth by him. John saw that only which was lying in futurity and which was shortly subject: “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto Him, to show unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel unto His servant John: who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw. Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of his prophecy and keep those things that are written therein: for the time is at hand.” Also Rev. 4:1. “After this I looked, and, behold, a door was opened in heaven; and the first voice which I heard was as it were of a trumpet talking with me; which said, Come up hither, and I will show thee things which must be hereafter.”….Now, I make this declaration, that those things which John saw in heaven had no allusion to anything that had been on the earth previous to that time, because they were the representation of “things which must shortly come to pass,” and not of what has already transpired. John saw beasts that had to do with things on the earth, but not in past ages. The beasts which John saw had to devour the inhabitants of the earth in days to come. ….The revelations do not give us to understand anything of the past in relation to the kingdom of God. What John saw and speaks of were things which he saw in heaven; those which Daniel saw were on and pertaining to the earth.

Nephi’s apocalyptic vision

Past

1 Ne. 13:1And it came to pass that the angel spake unto me, saying:

Look!

And I looked and beheld many nations and kingdoms.  2And the angel said unto me:

What beholdest thou?

And I said:

I behold many nations and kingdoms.

3And he said unto me:

These are the nations and kingdoms of the Gentiles.

Present

[Monday, March 21, 2016]

Future

4And it came to pass that I saw among the nations of the Gentiles the formation of a great church.  5And the angel said unto me:

Behold the formation of a church which is most abominable above all other churches, which slayeth the saints of God, yea, and tortureth them and bindeth them down, and yoketh them with a yoke of iron, and bringeth them down into captivity.

There certainly are, and have been, many nations and kingdoms of the Gentiles, but there has been no formation of the great and abominable church among the nations of the Gentiles, as yet.  This church’s formation is the first sign of the apocalypse and last days events.  Notice, though, that there are already saints of God on the scene when this church is formed, for the church begins to torture and kill and imprison them.  The fact that there are latter-day saints on the earth today among the nations and kingdoms of the Gentiles means that all is in prophetic readiness.  We are just awaiting the formation of this quite literal church.

People are free to apply the portion of the vision found in 1 Ne. 13:4 through 1 Ne. 14 to the events of today, but it is my understanding that these are just types and shadows.  Now, let’s fast-forward to:

1 Ne. 14:15And it came to pass that I beheld that the wrath of God was poured out upon that great and abominable church, insomuch that there were wars and rumors of wars among all the nations and kindreds of the earth.  16And as there began to be wars and rumors of wars among all the nations which belonged to the mother of abominations, the angel spake unto me, saying:

Behold, the wrath of God is upon the mother of harlots; and behold, thou seest all these things—17and when the day cometh that the wrath of God is poured out upon the mother of harlots, which is the great and abominable church of all the earth, whose founder is the devil, then, at that day, the work of the Father shall commence, in preparing the way for the fulfilling of his covenants, which he hath made to his people who are of the house of Israel.

Then Nephi is shown John, who the angel says will write the rest of the apocalyptic vision. And what is the rest of the vision? The opening of the seals.

Nephi’s end times prophecy

In 2 Ne. 25 Nephi gives an end time prophecy which he finishes in 2 Ne. 30.  “I give unto you a prophecy, according to the spirit which is in me” (2 Ne. 25:4), “I proceed with mine own prophecy, according to my plainness” (2 Ne. 25:7), “And now, my beloved brethren, I make an end of my sayings” (2 Ne. 30:18), and “And now I, Nephi, make an end of my prophesying unto you, my beloved brethren” (2 Ne. 31:1).  Where do we fit into the timeline of this prophecy?  Here:

Past

2 Ne. 26:14But behold, I prophesy unto you concerning the last days; concerning the days when the Lord God shall bring these things forth unto the children of men.  15After my seed and the seed of my brethren shall have dwindled in unbelief,

Present

[Monday, March 21, 2016]

Future

15and shall have been smitten by the Gentiles; yea, after the Lord God shall have camped against them round about, and shall have laid siege against them with a mount, and raised forts against them; and after they shall have been brought down low in the dust, even that they are not, yet the words of the righteous shall be written, and the prayers of the faithful shall be heard, and all those who have dwindled in unbelief shall not be forgotten.

The Gentiles have not yet brought the remnant so low in the dust that they are not. They’ve come close, but it’s not a perfect fulfillment, so what happened previously was yet another shadow fulfillment.  This means that most of chapter 26 and all of chapters 27-30 are still future events.

Daniel’s apocalyptic visions

Daniel’s end time visions, found in Daniel chapters 7 to 12, largely deal with kingdoms and kings.   John’s vision also dealt with kingdoms and kings.  Although our times [Monday, March 21, 2016] have some kingdoms among a bunch of nations, most of these kingdoms are constitutional monarchies, with essentially powerless kings.  The future, as I understand it, will mark a return to the absolute monarchy.  This is why both Daniel and John speak at great length about these things, which are largely absent today.  Daniel, then, saw things that are still future to us.

Some loose ends and final thoughts

Nephi prophesied:

1 Ne. 22:7And it meaneth that the time cometh that after all the house of Israel have been scattered and confounded, that the Lord God will raise up a mighty nation among the Gentiles, yea, even upon the face of this land; and by them shall our seed be scattered.

This mighty nation is typically interpreted by latter-day saints as being The United States of America under the United States Constitution, but that might be just a shadow fulfillment.  It may, instead, be The United States of America under the New Articles of Confederation (NAC).  I prophesied that the Josephite restorer will use his faith to bring us into a new set of perfected articles of confederation, and this event would certainly qualify as fulfilling Nephi’s prophecy that “the Lord God will raise up a mighty nation among the Gentiles.”  In other words, God Himself, using His miraculous power, will create a new nation in a day, through His appointed miracle-working seer.  Such an event shows God directly raising up the nation Himself, explicitly fulfilling the prophecy.  There would be no need to “try and make current events fit” into the prophecy, like is done with the Revolutionary War.  They would simply fit, altogether perfectly.

If, then, the NAC is the document that the Josephite is going to cause to be installed, by his faith, then its installation must precede the scattering and smiting of the remnant.  But what about the great and abominable church?  Does it precede or follow the NAC’s installation?

An interesting thing about the NAC is its strong language against kings and secret combinations.  I think, then, that the formation of the great and abominable church may be a sort of knee-jerk reaction against the Josephite and the new set of articles of confederation that he puts in place.  So I give it as my opinion that first comes the Josephite and the NAC (or something like it) and a slew of miracles from this guy, and then we get the rapid formation of the abominable church, in order for the wicked to try to deal with and stop him.

I say this because not only are saints on the scene when the abominable church is formed, but also miracles also appear to be on the scene:

1 Ne. 26:20And the Gentiles are lifted up in the pride of their eyes, and have stumbled, because of the greatness of their stumbling block, that they have built up many churches; nevertheless, they put down the power and miracles of God, and preach up unto themselves their own wisdom and their own learning, that they may get gain and grind upon the face of the poor.

Now, most latter-day saints would interpret that as meaning that they will simply say that there are no more miracles done any more, but that is not how I read this text.  I read it as that there are miracles occurring among the saints, or at least through this Josephite, and these miracles are causing a whole lot of problems for the various Christian and other churches and denominations out there.  After all, if you’ve got a guy saying that the Mormon church (LDS church) is God’s only true church and fold, and he’s emptying out hospitals of the sick and afflicted, and doing all sorts of other miracles, people are going to start flocking to his church (the LDS church.)  How do you deal with this onslaught of miracles, from a pastor’s perspective?  Well, one way, perhaps, is to unite the various churches into a single church conglomerate, a sort of great church, united against this man and his Mormon church.

So, it seems to me that the Josephite, the NAC and the Josephite’s never-ending mighty miracles, must precede the formation of the great and abominable church.  He, then, is the initial sign that gets everything prophetically moving, but how do we know when he is active on the scene?

I’ve already written that I believe now that that California earthquake I prophesied about, and the Josephite, are prophetically linked.  So, he is going to cause the earthquake.  This means it won’t be naturally occurring, but a miraculous event.  I now also believe that this “earthquake” might not even be a singular earthquake, at all, but a series of earthquakes, unleashed on the same day, in increasing magnitude over time, in a manner that cannot be explained as naturally occurring.  In other words, it seems to me that he is going to make it unmistakably clear that we are witnessing a mighty miracle, so that the entire nation and the whole entire world suddenly turn their attention to him.  This can only cause a full and complete combination of the wicked, to face this new threat to their power, hence the formation of the great and abominable church.

One last thing, and then I’ll end this post:  The angel that John saw having the seal of the living God, appears to me now as being the Josephite:

JST Rev. 7:1And after these things I saw four angels standing on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth, that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree.  2And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal of the living God; and I heard him cry with a loud voice to the four angels, to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, 3saying,

Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads.

D&C 77:9Q. What are we to understand by the angel ascending from the east, Revelation 7th chapter and 2nd verse?

A. We are to understand that the angel ascending from the east is he to whom is given the seal of the living God over the twelve tribes of Israel; wherefore, he crieth unto the four angels having the everlasting gospel, saying: Hurt not the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the servants of our God in their foreheads. And, if you will receive it, this is Elias which was to come to gather together the tribes of Israel and restore all things.

So, maybe what I’ve written above (if believed) will allow people to sleep a little more restfully.  The presidential elections will not mark the end of American civilization, nor is it, as yet, the end of the world.  We are not even yet in the end or last times.  It is still very much just the latter days and despite the doom and gloom crowd, we can expect a work of miracles to be forthcoming, before any of the “bad” signs happen, since it is also my understanding that the Josephite is already among us somewhere in this church.

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The definition of eternal


On January 28th, jackdale76 wrote the following in a comment on this blog:

At the Great Judgement the Lord will declare to those who are filthy still:

23 And then will I profess unto them: I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity (3 Nephi 14:23)

JST Matt. 7:33 And then will I say, Ye never knew me

So, Jesus will say both “I never knew you” and “you never knew Me”.  Those people he addresses are former saints for they prophesied, cast out devils and did many wonderful works.

When he tells them “I never knew you”, I interpreted it “I did not bear your pains,sicknesses,infirmities during the Atonement so that I could know how to succor you”. That makes sense because owing to God’s foreknowledge Christ only suffered for those who repent.

22 Therefore, whoso repenteth … for such I have laid down my life, and have taken it up again; (3 Nephi 9:22)

Now, my question is, what does He mean by “you never knew Me”?  My understanding is that to know Christ is to be baptized with fire.

ye … and after this [the baptism of fire] should deny me, it would have been better for you that ye had not known me (2 Nephi 31:14)

So, those former saints did indeed know Christ at some point in their lives. How is it that “they never knew Him”? Any thoughts?

Prior to jackdale76 asking this question, I had never considered the meaning of that scripture.  After he wrote his comment, I took a look at the scripture and an answer popped into my head, which I then wrote into the following comment:

It’s just a reset:

And now, verily I say unto you, I, the Lord, will not lay any sin to your charge; go your ways and sin no more; but unto that soul who sinneth shall the former sins return, saith the Lord your God. (D&C 82:7)

The sons of perdition commit spiritual suicide, going back instead of forward, returning like the dog to his vomit, so everything gets reset to its former condition. In other words, they didn’t know the Lord, then they knew the Lord, then they committed spiritual suicide and so go back to their former condition of not knowing the Lord. Put another way, the Lord never knew them, then He knew them, then they committed spiritual suicide and so the Lord goes back to the former condition of not knowing them. They had sins, their sins were remitted, then they committed spiritual suicide and so all their former sins return, as if the atonement and redemption never happened. The experience of this reset leaves them completely gutted or empty, so that now the devil has full control over them and they are lost (perdition) forever.

However, although I thought the thought and penned the words, I had never heard such a doctrine before, but after writing the comment, I was too lazy to more fully unfold it, so I just let it go. But then on March 10th the following scripture came into mind, which dealt with the same doctrine, so I wrote out a follow-up comment:

It may be that this is the same reset miracle mentioned in the previous comment. Moses 5:

22And the Lord said unto Cain:

Why art thou wroth? Why is thy countenance fallen? 23If thou doest well, thou shalt be accepted. And if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door, and Satan desireth to have thee; and except thou shalt hearken unto my commandments, I will deliver thee up, and it shall be unto thee according to his desire. And thou shalt rule over him; 24for from this time forth thou shalt be the father of his lies; thou shalt be called Perdition; for thou wast also before the world. 25And it shall be said in time to come—

That these abominations were had from Cain; for he rejected the greater counsel which was had from God;

and this is a cursing which I will put upon thee, except thou repent.

So, Cain wasn’t called Perdition before the world, and we all knew this, yet once he becomes a son of perdition, miraculously the heavenly record and our memories are changed and he is now found to have been called Perdition before the world. Everyone goes back to check their memories and the records, and lo and behold!, what do you know? He really was called Perdition! And we all remember this to have ocurred.

As this thing keeps grabbing my attention, I might as well delve into it.

Now, if this doctrine is correct, and for the sake of this post I will assume that it is, it seems to me that the implications are as follows:

Time has eternal consequences

God lives in a state of presence, in which all thngs are present before him, both past, present and future:

D&C 38:1Thus saith the Lord your God, even Jesus Christ, the Great I Am, Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the same which looked upon the wide expanse of eternity, and all the seraphic hosts of heaven, before the world was made; 2the same which knoweth all things, for all things are present before mine eyes; 3I am the same which spake, and the world was made, and all things came by me.

D&C 130:6The angels do not reside on a planet like this earth; 7but they reside in the presence of God, on a globe like a sea of glass and fire, where all things for their glory are manifest, past, present, and future, and are continually before the Lord.

This means that the future, to God, is actually not ahead in time, as we think of it, but a “day” behind, in the past, in that spot of time which we call the present.  And it means that the past, to God, is actually not behind in time, as we think of it, but a “day” ahead, in the future, in that spot of time which we call the present.  His present consists of both past, present and future, whereas our present is devoid of past and future.

We operate in time linearly, the past being a path that has already been traveled, and the present being the spot on the path we are on.  In front of us, there is no path, only a planned path or an imaginary one.  Each step we take in the present towards that imaginary future path (in whatever direction we choose) creates a new point on the path, and everything previous to that point is counted as already traveled and immutable.

When we make changes to the present, to our present conditions, we say that what we do or do not do in this present time has eternal consequences, and what we are referring to is the future, because for us, the past is set in stone.  But that is because we are living in time, and time is an illusion appointed unto us so that we can be tried and tested and be able to choose our eternal destiny.

Illusions operate on the principle of blindness, and indeed, we cannot see the future.  And when we gaze upon the past, we see it as unalterable.

But God sees all things and all things are in the present, and this is the actual state of the universe.  So, when you make a change to the present, as future and past are also there, they also change.

Thus, we’ve got it wrong, or only half right.  It is true that what we do in time has eternal consequences, referring to our future state, but the saying and understanding is a manifestation of our ignorance of what the word eternal means in the scriptures, for eternal does not refer to only the future, it refers also to the past.

The meaning of eternal

Abr. 3:18Howbeit that he made the greater star; as, also, if there be two spirits, and one shall be more intelligent than the other, yet these two spirits, notwithstanding one is more intelligent than the other, have no beginning; they existed before, they shall have no end, they shall exist after, for they are gnolaum, or eternal.

Whatever, then, that is eternal, is from everlasting to everlasting, or unchanging in one direction (the future) and unchanging in the other direction (the past).  Something that has a beginning, must have an end, and thus, cannot be eternal, and this, then, is what time is, even a state of existence in which there is a beginning and an end.  Whatever does not have a beginning cannot have an end, and thus must be eternal and this then is what eternal life is, even a state of existence in which there is no beginning and no end.

Eternal cannot be changed

It is, by definition, a never-ending (and never-beginning) state, therefore, it is impossible to change it.  So, how, then, does one take an eternal spirit (of whatever intelligence) and upgrade it (change it) so that now it is enlarged and can receive greater glory?  Through the introduction of time.

Time changes eternity in both directions

Whatever happens in time (our present) alters both our future and our past.  This happens because both future and past are with us.  We cannot see it, but God can see it.  Both states are simultaneously affected and altered by every change that happens in time (the present).  When all is said and done and we are arranged before the judgment bar of Christ, whatever reward we get, whether the telestial kingdom, terrestrial kingdom or celestial kingdom, or exaltation in the celestial kingdom, will be given to us everlastingly in both directions, so that we enter, once again, into eternity, always existing as (whatever we end up as).

D&C 132:20Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; therefore shall they be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them.

These gods, which are exalted men and women, will be made from everlasting to everlasting, continuing in both directions as gods.  Their past will match their future and they will find themselves as having always existed as gods, having no beginning and no end.  It is this power that God possesses to alter the past so that it matches the endless state of the future that allows the fulfillment of the following scripture:

Moro. 7:48Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. Amen.

Now, it is not possible to become exactly like Jesus Christ and His Father, right?  They have different histories than us, right?  (So goes the saying among Mormons.)  But when you factor in that the past is right smack in God’s present just as the future is, and that both are simultaneously affected in an equal manner by what happens in the present, and so God’s almighty power holds both the future and the past of men in His eternal hands, then you end up with a doctrine that shows it is in fact very much possible to become exactly like Jesus Christ and His Father!

This applies to more than just the exalted

It is not just the exalted (the gods) who obtain this eternal state, in which they are now gods with no beginning or end.  No, everyone that receives an inheritance in any of the three glories will become eternal (it is called eternal life for a reason!), having no beginning to their history and no end to their state of existence, being unchanging from everlasting to everlasting.  This brings us to the ejected ones: Perdition and his sons and angels.

A liar and murderer from the beginning

D&C 93:25And whatsoever is more or less than this is the spirit of that wicked one who was a liar from the beginning.

John 8:44Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

12 Ne. 2:7And I, Lehi, according to the things which I have read, must needs suppose that an angel of God, according to that which is written, had fallen from heaven; wherefore, he became a devil, having sought that which was evil before God.

D&C 76:25And this we saw also, and bear record, that an angel of God who was in authority in the presence of God, who rebelled against the Only Begotten Son whom the Father loved and who was in the bosom of the Father, was thrust down from the presence of God and the Son, 26and was called Perdition, for the heavens wept over him—he was Lucifer, a son of the morning.

Lucifer was a liar and a murderer from the beginning, yet also an angel in authority in the presence of God?  Why would God allow a liar and murderer to be angel in authority in his presence?  The answer is that He didn’t.  In Lucifer’s eternal state, he was an angel in authority in the presence of God from everlasting to everlasting, having no beginning nor end.  He was always an angel.  That was his history.  However, the moment that he entered into his first estate and rebelled, his past and future altered, as did the past and future of the angels who were cast out with him.  Now he is always a liar and always a murderer, from everlasting to everlasting.  His sons will likewise obtain the same history, because of their acts committed in time.

As numerous, as it were, as the sands of the sea

Not only does God have power to alter our eternal history, but He also has power to alter the history of time.

Gen. 22:17That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies;

Gen. 32:12And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.

Jer. 33:22As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant, and the Levites that minister unto me.

Hosea 1:10Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, Ye are not my people, there it shall be said unto them, Ye are the sons of the living God.

Rom. 9:27Esaias also crieth concerning Israel, Though the number of the children of Israel be as the sand of the sea, a remnant shall be saved:

Heb. 11:12Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead, so many as the stars of the sky in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea shore innumerable.

The children of Israel, then, were to be as numerous as the sands of the sea or the stars in the heavens. The children of Lehi, being, of course, of the house of Israel, got this blessing of innumerability.  For example, there is Nephi’s vision:

1 Ne. 12:1And it came to pass that the angel said unto me: Look, and behold thy seed, and also the seed of thy brethren. And I looked and beheld the land of promise; and I beheld multitudes of people, yea, even as it were in number as many as the sand of the sea.

Nephi saw these numbers before Jesus ever arrived on the continent.  As the Nephites were (almost) always of a limited number, this vision of innumerable multitudes of people could only be speaking of the Lamanites.  Mormon, in fact, actually ends up describing one of the Lamanite armies in such terms:

Alma 2:27And behold, as they were crossing the river Sidon, the Lamanites and the Amlicites, being as numerous almost, as it were, as the sands of the sea, came upon them to destroy them.

Lamanite numbers are always described as vast, even beyond comprehension.  Lamanite casualty numbers are given only if the numbers are sufficiently small enough, but when they become too large to number, they are always left out.  The Lamanites seem to have had an endless population supply.  Even when the Lamanites attack the Nephites and get decimated, we find them coming back for more a short time later with another seemingly endless supply of men.  They do this time and time again, with no end in sight to their numbers.  There is a finite amount of land and a finite amount of resources, yet the Lamanites appear to be infinite.  How can this be possible?

It may be that what the text is describing is yet another miracle occurring, one in which God is inflating the Lamanite numbers at will.  For example, if there are 100 Lamanites only, and everybody knows there are only 100, but suddenly 500 more Lamanites show up, this miracle, which altered the present Lamanite numbers, must have also caused a corresponding alteration in the Lamanite history.  So, when the unknown Lamanites show up, they are asked, “Where did you come from?  We didn’t even know you existed!”  And the answer is the revised history: “Oh, we are descendants of Uncle Ishmael’s third son that was assumed missing.  We’ve been living in the east wilderness all this time and heard shouting.  We thought it was a raiding party assembling to attack the Nephites and we wanted to be involved.”  When the genealogy is checked, everything matches up perfectly, and yet, these were unknown, even missing Lamanites, who had been living among the larger Lamanite population without anyone knowing about them until now.  There is still that thing called finite space, so it’s still impossible, right?

Sure, it’s impossible, but God has power to make one hundred yards into 100,000 yards.  You measure it out and it measures out each and every time to 100 yards, yet you can fit 300 air craft carriers into it.  The Lamanites weren’t too particular on things.  It was pretty easy to hide an innumerable, seemingly infinitely large population right under their (and everybody else’s) noses.

The point I’m trying to make is that if God did perform such miracles, altering the present, even the present Lamanite population numbers, miraculously, then these people don’t just appear out of thin air.  No, they appear with histories.  And those histories are instantaneously-made pasts, which they actually lived, and they will recall their past lives and the histories of their ancestors.  God has power to do all this because it’s all there, in front of Him: past, present and future, and whatever He alters or creates in the present, comes complete with a past and a future.

Btw, to be fair to the Nephites, after Christ came and visited them, they also got this same, apparent, miracle of innumerability:

Morm. 1:7The whole face of the land had become covered with buildings, and the people were as numerous almost, as it were the sand of the sea.

Records on earth affect heavenly records

As it is time that modifies eternity, and not the other way around, so it is that earthly records (of time) modify the eternal heavenly records.  So we get stuff like this from Joseph Smith:

D&C 128:6And further, I want you to remember that John the Revelator was contemplating this very subject in relation to the dead, when he declared, as you will find recorded in Revelation 20:12—And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

7You will discover in this quotation that the books were opened; and another book was opened, which was the book of life; but the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works; consequently, the books spoken of must be the books which contained the record of their works, and refer to the records which are kept on the earth. And the book which was the book of life is the record which is kept in heaven; the principle agreeing precisely with the doctrine which is commanded you in the revelation contained in the letter which I wrote to you previous to my leaving my place—that in all your recordings it may be recorded in heaven.

8Now, the nature of this ordinance consists in the power of the priesthood, by the revelation of Jesus Christ, wherein it is granted that whatsoever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Or, in other words, taking a different view of the translation, whatsoever you record on earth shall be recorded in heaven, and whatsoever you do not record on earth shall not be recorded in heaven; for out of the books shall your dead be judged, according to their own works, whether they themselves have attended to the ordinances in their own propria persona, or by the means of their own agents, according to the ordinance which God has prepared for their salvation from before the foundation of the world, according to the records which they have kept concerning their dead.

9It may seem to some to be a very bold doctrine that we talk of—a power which records or binds on earth and binds in heaven. Nevertheless, in all ages of the world, whenever the Lord has given a dispensation of the priesthood to any man by actual revelation, or any set of men, this power has always been given. Hence, whatsoever those men did in authority, in the name of the Lord, and did it truly and faithfully, and kept a proper and faithful record of the same, it became a law on earth and in heaven, and could not be annulled, according to the decrees of the great Jehovah. This is a faithful saying. Who can hear it?

Again, whatever is bound or loosed on earth is bound and loosed in heaven in both directions (future and also past.)

Okay, so I’m not going to take this any further.  If any of the other blog contributors want to see where else this doctrine leads to, such as the life of Christ and the Great Millennium in which there will be “time no longer,” they can be my guests and blog about it.  I think what I’ve written here is sufficient food for thought for the day.

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