Be Not Stiffnecked – Jarom 1:1-15

1 Now behold, I, Jarom, write a few words according to the commandment of my father, Enos, that our genealogy may be kept.

2 And as these plates are small, and as these things are written for the intent of the benefit of our brethren the Lamanites [They knew the prophecies, that the record would be used in the last days to convince their brethren the Lamanites to come unto Christ.], wherefore, it must needs be that I write a little; but I shall not write the things of my prophesying, nor of my revelations. For what could I write more than my fathers have written? For have not they revealed the plan of salvation? I say unto you, Yea; and this sufficeth me. [Jarom taught the same things as his father, and grandfather; the Doctrine of Christ. He only adds what he is inspired that may be new.]

3 Behold, it is expedient that much should be done among this people, because of the hardness of their hearts, and the deafness of their ears, and the blindness of their minds, and the stiffness of their necks; nevertheless, God is exceedingly merciful unto them, and has not as yet swept them off from the face of the land. [Sound familiar? Is our generation stiffnecked, slow to listen, look and feel? God is merciful, as we are probably overdue for a serious correction. The Lord always waits until the last second before He passes judgment.]

4 And there are many among us who have many revelations, for they are not all stiffnecked. [If you are willing to turn and look away from your rigidity of beliefs the Lord might be able to teach you something.] And as many as are not stiffnecked and have faith [willingness to look, seek revelation, and act upon it], have communion with the Holy Spirit, which maketh manifest unto the children of men, according to their faith. [Faith is the door to all communication with heaven. Faith is not merely believing; otherwise all would have communion regularly with God on a profound level.]

I have always loved the above scripture for its explanation regarding how to receive revelation and it had an influence upon me as I was learning to hear the word of the Lord.

5 And now, behold, two hundred years had passed away, and the people of Nephi had waxed strong in the land. [In 1976 the United States had been a country for 200 years. A culture is pretty strong and established by that point.] They observed to keep the law of Moses and the sabbath day holy unto the Lord. And they profaned not; neither did they blaspheme. And the laws of the land were exceedingly strict.  [The United States didn’t last as long as this Nephite nation by that point. Of course, they were not a Republic, but more a theocratic constitutional monarchy.]

6 And they were scattered upon much of the face of the land, and the Lamanites also. And they were exceedingly more numerous than were they of the Nephites; and they loved murder and would drink the blood of beasts. [A common belief that blood brings added strength to the hunter.]

7 And it came to pass that they came many times against us, the Nephites, to battle. But our kings and our leaders were mighty men in the faith of the Lord; and they taught the people the ways of the Lord; wherefore, we withstood the Lamanites and swept them away out of our lands, and began to fortify our cities, or whatsoever place of our inheritance.

8 And we multiplied exceedingly, and spread upon the face of the land, and became exceedingly rich in gold, and in silver, and in precious things, and in fine workmanship of wood, in buildings, and in machinery, and also in iron and copper, and brass and steel, making all manner of tools of every kind to till the ground, and weapons of war—yea, the sharp pointed arrow, and the quiver, and the dart, and the javelin, and all preparations for war. [The Nephites were not stone masons and builders like the Egyptians, or even the Hebrews. They did most all their work with earth and timber. They were artisans, yet did not have the technology as did the Jaredites or other more ancient civilizations. Only a few exceptions to this as when Nephi attempted to build a smaller version of Solomon’s Temple.]

9 And thus being prepared to meet the Lamanites, they did not prosper against us. But the word of the Lord was verified, which he spake unto our fathers, saying that: Inasmuch as ye will keep my commandments ye shall prosper in the land.

10 And it came to pass that the prophets of the Lord did threaten [warn] the people of Nephi, according to the word of God, that if they did not keep the commandments, but should fall into transgression, they should be destroyed from off the face of the land.

11 Wherefore, the prophets, and the priests, and the teachers [Three categories of priesthood: Melchizedek, Levitical, and Aaronic], did labor diligently, exhorting with all long-suffering the people to diligence; teaching the law of Moses, and the intent for which it was given [teaching the “intent in which it was given” is a critical part of the law of Moses, for without that the people stumble.]; persuading them to look forward unto the Messiah, and believe in him to come as though he already was. And after this manner did they teach them. [Understanding how the Temple ordinances pointed to Christ makes all the difference. They were to remember that His sacrifice would apply to them as if it had already taken place.]

12 And it came to pass that by so doing they kept them from being destroyed upon the face of the land; for they did prick their hearts with the word [power of the Spirit], continually stirring them up unto repentance.

13 And it came to pass that two hundred and thirty and eight years had passed away—after the manner of wars, and contentions, and dissensions, for the space of much of the time. [About the year 2014 in US time equivalency.]

14 And I, Jarom, do not write more, for the plates are small. But behold, my brethren, ye can go to the other plates of Nephi; for behold, upon them the records of our wars are engraven, according to the writings of the kings, or those which they caused to be written. [Those plates are sealed up in the Hill Shim.]

15 And I deliver these plates into the hands of my son Omni, that they may be kept according to the commandments of my fathers.

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4 Responses to Be Not Stiffnecked – Jarom 1:1-15

  1. S Silver says:

    Vs 5: How did the Nephites keep the Sabbath day Holy? How is this done? What does it look like? [The Nephites kept a lunar calendar, so they kept their Sabbaths according to the New Moon (Omni 1:21). I don’t know what particular traditions they had other than to refrain from regular daily work and focus upon holiness to the Lord. PR]

    I’ve asked the Lord how and instead of giving me a list of do’s and don’ts it is like I am learning by trial & error or pure experience. The holy activities also vary and can include things that I used to think was breaking the Sabbath. Is the Sabbath for asking the Lord what He wants us to personally do and then obeying that revelation on that day? [Yes, seek a revelation for yourself. I use my Sabbath, which happens to be today, to block out a significant time to be holy to the Lord. I spend the rest of the day studying the scriptures. Its fun and I look forward to it! I still serve my family and help others as needed. It is a joyful day of the week for me. PR]

    How has the Lord intended it to be a gift and a delight? I truly want to learn because I realize this is a commandment I must keep.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. S Silver says:

    What is the machinery mentioned in vs 8? I’ve had this underlined in my scriptures for years and wondered about it. [This is a reference to tools made to help with different tasks such as building, mining, and other things. PR]

    Is it the mechanisms that would turn a mill or press of some sort? The simple machines of pulleys or gears? Did they consider chariots “machines”? [That is possible, I do not know.]

    Liked by 1 person

  3. S Silver says:

    What does it mean that the plates are small from vs 14? [Compared to the plates of Nephi and Jacob, he used little space to record his record. PR]

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Matt Owens says:

    Can you talk more about verse 11 where you reference three 3 priesthood categories: melchezidek, levitical, and aaronic? I’ve been studying and trying to better understand priesthood levels and wondering where and how the patriarchal priesthood mentioned in D&C plays in. [The highest priesthood, which is sometimes referred to as “Patriarchal” is the relationship status and power of those who inherit exaltation in the highest order. Aaronic is telestial. Melchizedek is Terrestrial. And Levitical is interesting because it is those group of people who are coming unto Christ and have tasted of his goodness, but not yet received Eternal Life in the next world. That order of priesthood represents such a status of “servants of God of the Third Estate.” In reality, all priesthood is simply the degree of relationship we have with the divine. The Lord gave them names, and status to teach the process of the Everlasting Covenant and how to approach God. PR]

    Liked by 2 people

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