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Thursday, April 9, 2009

2 Nephi 8

Read it HERE.
Summary: In the last days, the Lord shall comfort Zion and gather Israel—The redeemed shall come to Zion amid great joy—Compare Isaiah 51 and 52:1-2. Between 559 and 545 B.C.

Although difficult to understand, this chapter is applicable to US... our day and time. It begins by asking us (those who seek righteousness) to hearken and look to our Rock (our parents, our God, our Savior); also referring to the Abrahamic Covenant.

Knowing that we live in the last days, I find verse 3 rather comforting:
3 For the Lord shall acomfort bZion, he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her cwilderness like dEden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord. Joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving and the voice of melody.

With all the recent natural calamities we've witnessed (i.e.- earthquakes, wildfires, mudslides, floods, famine, volcanic eruptions, ice storms, etc.) there is increasing evidence that we are indeed living in the last days. Coupled with the evil-doings of men we see constantly (i.e.- lying, cheating, stealing, murder, suicide, rape, hatred, selfishness, greed, wars, forgetting God, economic turmoil, etc., etc.) the world we live in is certainly in need of more righteous, God-fearing men and women. It's amazing to me that Jacob (and Isaiah) had a glimpse of what our lives would be like living among such disaster and ruin both in nature and in the hearts of men.

Several verses sound a warning voice and a comfort, in short telling us how to live in our day:
* Hearken unto God (v. 7)
* Fear not the hate of men (v. 7)
* His righteousness shall be forever, salvation for all generations (v. 8)
* Awake and put on STRENGTH! (v. 9)
* Redeemed will come singing unto Zion with everlasting joy and holiness without sorrow and mourning (v. 11)
* Don't be afraid of men who die, but follow him who comforts you (v. 12)
*Don't forget your Maker (v. 13)
* Don't fear the oppressor (v. 13)
* He will cover us in the shadow of His hand, we are His people (v.16)
* Awake and STAND UP, remembering the Atonement (v. 17)
* He has plead our cause (through the Atonement) so we don't have to suffer anymore if we remember Him and LIVE IN HIM! (v. 22)
* Awake and put on your GARMENTS! The Temple is re-established for those who are clean (v. 24)
* Go to the temple, sit down, and loose the bands off our necks.... "O captive daughter(s) of Zion" (v. 25)

I love how this chapter closes with that line... captive daughter of Zion. We choose to be captive in Zion as we make choices to live clean and righteously as they do in Zion. Although Isaiah speaks very poetically and symbolically this chapter seems comprehensible because of its contexts in and for our day.

1 comment:

Elise said...

I hadn't thought about it quite that way before--that we choose to be captive in Zion. We may have opressors but in order to truly be captive in Zion, ie the pure in heart, we have to make the choice.

Wow. Thanks, Holly! GREAT thoughts.