The Beatitudes of Progression – 3 Nephi 12:1-48

1 And it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words unto Nephi, and to those who had been called, (now the number of them who had been called, and received power and authority to baptize, was twelve) [The number twelve signifies a governing body. For this people, these disciples at this time were the only ones given authority to baptize, and it was given to them directly of the Lord.] and behold, he stretched forth his hand unto the multitude, and cried unto them [The Lord raised His voice.], saying: Blessed are ye if ye shall give heed unto the words of these twelve whom I have chosen from among you to minister unto you, and to be your servants; and unto them I have given power that they may baptize you with water; and after that ye are baptized with water, behold, I will baptize you with fire and with the Holy Ghost; therefore blessed are ye if ye shall believe in me and be baptized, after that ye have seen me and know that I am. [This is the first of two new “blessed,” which are added to the Beatitudes in this BofM text. This promise is to those who will listen to the words of His servants and repent.]

The word “blessed” in this context means to be anointed of God. It would be better to state that they are “Blessed,” as a state of holiness before the Lord.

Normally, they would be baptized of water, receive the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost, and then see the Lord and know that He is. They witness Him first, yet the Lord says they must still be baptized and receive the Holy Ghost.

2 And again, more [in addition to you] blessed are they who shall believe in your words because that ye shall testify that ye have seen me, [more people shall be blessed after hearing your testimony] and that ye know that I am. [The second “blessed” added in the translation is also not included in the original New Testament account (Matthew 5), which identifies a blessedness for those who receive baptism and the Holy Ghost.] Yea, blessed are they who shall believe in your words, and come down into the depths of humility and be baptized, for they shall be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and shall receive a remission of their sins. [The remission of sins come from the baptism of fire.]

The following is what is called the Beatitudes (to be anointed or Blessed.) This is same sermon which was given in Gallilee, with a few additions in the BofM translation as stated above. It is the Lord’s blueprint or perfect pattern for how you may receive the Second Comforter and stand in the presence of God.

3 Yea, blessed are the poor in spirit who come unto me, [broken heart and contrite spirit] for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. [They shall receive the Holy Spirit of Promise.]

4 And again, blessed are all they that mourn [cry unto the Lord], for they shall be comforted. [I shall be with them.]

5 And blessed are the meek, [seek the will of the Lord] for they shall inherit the earth. [Shall stand with the Church of the Firstborn when the earth is changed and exalted.]

6 And blessed are all they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness, [those who seek my will above all things]  for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost. [their spirits shall be quickened and be one with me]

7 And blessed are the merciful, [filled with compassion for others – charity] for they shall obtain mercy. [grace or divine progression through Christ]

8 And blessed are all the pure in heart, [real intent, pure love for God] for they shall see God. [This is the only justifiable purpose to seek the Second Comforter: to know Him because you love Him deeply and desire to serve.]

9 And blessed are all the peacemakers, [those who bring souls to me] for they shall be called the children of God. [Be called My Sons and Daughters, Servants of the Most High.]

The word “servant” has a much negative connotation in today’s society, but to serve God in righteousness is glorious and the greatest honor in the Heavens. 

10 And blessed are all they who are persecuted for my name’s sake, [willing to give their life for me] for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

11 And blessed are ye when men shall revile you and persecute [stated twice], and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake; [give up your reputation in the world]

12 For ye shall have great joy and be exceedingly glad, for great shall be your reward in heaven; for so persecuted they the prophets who were before you. [Calling and Election Made Sure]

This is a concise list of the Beatitudes, their meaning, and blessings. It is a blueprint for Eternal Life as given by the Savior each time He visits a people. It is the Ten Commandments of the New Covenant and will lead a soul from the beginning of the process to its full “Blessed” state when you stand in the presence of the Lord.

  1. Listen and heed the words of my servants. (believe) ALL SHALL BE GIVEN
  2. Receive baptism of water and the Holy Ghost. (receive the promise of the Everlasting Covenant) KNOW THAT I AM
  3. Continue with a broken heart and contrite spirit – full submission. (poor in spirit) WILL RECEIVE THE HOLY SPIRIT OF PROMISE
  4. Cry unto me – pray always. (mourn) HE WILL COME IN SPIRIT
  5. Seek His will– follow every revelation received. (meek) SHALL ABIDE HIS COMING
  6. Seek God’s will above all – full submission. (hunger) FIRST RESSURECTION
  7. Charity, the pure love of Christ. (merciful) DIVINE PROGRESSION
  8. Pure intentions and love of God. (pure in heart) THE SECOND COMFORTER
  9. Bring souls unto me as called. (peacemakers) A SERVANT OF GOD
  10. Be willing to give all things. (persecution) CALLING AND ELECTION MADE SURE

13 Verily, verily, I say unto you, I give unto you to be the salt of the earth; but if the salt shall lose its savor wherewith shall the earth be salted? The salt shall be thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and to be trodden under foot of men.

The Lord said that we must be pure and white like salt, that through us the souls of this temporal earth may be saved. That they may see our good works and that our light will guide them to Him. When we become His sons and daughters, and as the light within us is magnified, we have great ability to draw others to Him. If we pollute ourselves or hide in darkness we cannot be of any use as a servant of the Most High. (personal journal)

14 Verily, verily, I say unto you, I give unto you to be the light of this people. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid. [Those who were witnesses were expected to be the light to everyone else.]

15 Behold, do men light a candle and put it under a bushel? Nay, but on a candlestick, and it giveth light to all that are in the house;

16 Therefore let your light so shine before this people, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven. [What are the good works He is referring to? The most important is what is stated in the Beatitudes. To receive the baptism of water and Holy Ghost, and to follow the revelations given.]

17 Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets. I am not come to destroy but to fulfil;

18 For verily I say unto you, one jot nor one tittle hath not passed away from the law, but in me it hath all been fulfilled.

[The Lord emphasizes that the Law of Moses and previous commandments are not to be forgotten, but that He fulfills them, so His new commandments are to be followed.]

19 And behold, I have given you the law and the commandments of my Father, that ye shall believe in me, and that ye shall repent of your sins, and come unto me with a broken heart and a contrite spirit. Behold, ye have the commandments before you, and the law is fulfilled. [Again, the focus in upon His Doctrine. The Lord emphasizing that all that the Mosaic Law taught has been fulfilled in His last and great sacrifice.]

20 Therefore come unto me and be ye saved; for verily I say unto you, that except ye shall keep my commandments, which I have commanded you at this time, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven. [A reference to the Beatitudes just given.]

The Kingdom of Heaven indeed has many mansions. The Throne is where God governs all creation. Most who receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost remain in a state of terrestrial, where they abide with the Holy Ghost and can have the presence of the Son, but not yet the Father. To ascend in the Kingdom of Heaven we must do all that the Lord has commanded, which is detailed in the Beatitudes.

At this point the focus on the Lord’s sermon is how a Servant of the Most High is to conduct themselves:

21 Ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time, and it is also written before you, that thou shalt not kill [murder], and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment of God;

22 But I say unto you, that whosoever is angry with his brother shall be in danger of his judgment. And whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca [idiot], shall be in danger of the council; and whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire. [Do not harbor negative feelings as expressed through your words, for it invites the Adversary and not becoming of a servant of God.]

The Lord is emphasizing how the Mosaic Law taught direct commandments against actions, but that even the very thoughts of harm toward another may divert our path.

23 Therefore, if ye shall come unto me, or shall desire to come unto me, and rememberest that thy brother hath aught against thee—

24 Go thy way unto thy brother, and first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come unto me with full purpose of heart, and I will receive you. [You must not leave any hard feelings between you and anyone you may have offended. Seek reconciliation with these people. Then your heart will be ready to receive the Lord.]

25 Agree with thine adversary quickly while thou art in the way with him, lest at any time he shall get thee, and thou shalt be cast into prison. [This does not mean to admit guilt where there is none, but to honor any debts and promises so that you are not beholden to any man.]

26 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, thou shalt by no means come out thence until thou hast paid the uttermost senine. And while ye are in prison can ye pay even one senine? Verily, verily, I say unto you, Nay. [If you are found guilty of breaking the law you cannot be a Servant, for you must pay your debt.]

27 Behold, it is written by them of old time, that thou shalt not commit adultery;

28 But I say unto you, that whosoever looketh on a woman, to lust after her, hath committed adultery already in his heart.

29 Behold, I give unto you a commandment, that ye suffer none of these things to enter into your heart;

30 For it is better that ye should deny yourselves of these things, wherein ye will take up your cross, than that ye should be cast into hell.

The heart is where we are judged by the Lord. If our desires are impure we shall not progress and may be led away by the Adversary. Those who struggle with a spirit of lust must endeavor to “deny” themselves any access to these images, thoughts, and temptations. Why is it so critical? It is Satan’s greatest lure for the Sons of God, both in this life and the next. Every attempt must be made to develop the habit of looking upon women with the eyes of God, with a wholesome, pure, and charitable view. To seek any sexual interaction outside of marriage is a step toward perdition. 

The Lord easily forgives, but it is highly advisable to do all in your power to deny yourself of these things. There are many of the Lord’s servants who have suffered through these sins. Often, the most difficult part of forgiveness is forgiving oneself. The more a servant can resist these temptations in this life the stronger and more focused they will be in the next.

31 It hath been written, that whosoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorcement.

32 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery; and whoso shall marry her who is divorced committeth adultery.

The Lord said that this scripture is making the point that marriage is a covenant between God, a man and woman;  something that cannot easily be broken by a piece of paper unless either is guilty of adultery.  Adultery is to be unclean before God in marriage and will prevent them from ascending to Him. It is not just the woman, but the man as well that needs to consider such a thing. Careful prayer and a confirmation of the Lord’s will, through revelation, should be how a couple should consider their marriage difficulties. I thanked the Lord for the clarification. (personal journal)

33 And again it is written, thou shalt not forswear thyself, but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths;

34 But verily, verily, I say unto you, swear not at all; neither by heaven, for it is God’s throne;

35 Nor by the earth, for it is his footstool;

36 Neither shalt thou swear by thy head, because thou canst not make one hair black or white;

37 But let your communication be Yea, yea; Nay, nay; for whatsoever cometh of more than these is evil. [It is a common practice to make oaths to God, referencing the heavens, one’s body, or any important personal thing as the cost of the promise if we fail. This is not to be, for the Lord sets the terms of our covenants with Him. Those who make covenants with curses attached to them are placing themselves at risk of deception and the Adversary.]

38 And behold, it is written, an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth;

39 But I say unto you, that ye shall not resist evil, but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also;

This scripture is often used to justify a pacifist approach to Christian living. It is first to be noted that the Lord is addressing those who will be His Servants. They are to follow the last two steps of the Beatitudes in their spiritual progression. Here, the Lord expects them to submit themselves as they do His work. As such, their sacrifices stand as a witness against the wicked and also stand as a memorial for the eternities. Until one has been called and chosen to bear such a burden, we are to judge between good and evil and resist evil at all costs. We are to protect our families from harm, to fight for truth and justice. If you abide in charity, you will know exactly how the Lord wishes you to demonstrate His love (the pure love of Christ) in each situation.

40 And if any man will sue thee at the law and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also;

41 And whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile, go with him twain.

42 Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn thou not away. [Be willing to give all you are required to those in need. This doesn’t mean we give away everything we own at the expense of providing for the needs of our family. However, the Lord at times will ask it of us if we are called to the work and called to be Servants of God. Refer to Moroni 7:44-48, as defining characteristics of charity are listed.]

43 And behold it is written also, that thou shalt love thy neighbor and hate thine enemy;

44 But behold I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you;

45 That ye may be the children of your Father who is in heaven; for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good. [One defining characteristic of charity is that we see others the way God sees them. We must pray for charity that our hearts may be pure.]

46 Therefore those things which were of old time [Mosaic Law], which were under the law, in me are all fulfilled.

47 Old things are done away, and all things have become new. [The former law becomes old as you keep all commandments the Lord reveals to you now. Having received the gift of the Holy Ghost you are one with the Father and Son, as you keep His Spirit with you always. If a person after receiving this call falls to transgression or sin they must repent and be made clean again by the baptism of fire, otherwise they shall be led away by the buffetings of Satan.]

48 Therefore I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect. [The Lord states to these people, after having received much, that they needed to become perfect. How is this possible, to be perfect like Jesus Christ and the Father? They must submit to the fullness of the Everlasting Covenant and do all things which are commanded of them. This comes incrementally, and cannot all be received in this life.]

 

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17 Responses to The Beatitudes of Progression – 3 Nephi 12:1-48

  1. An even more concise description of the Beatitudes:
    1. Believe His Servants
    2. Receive the Covenant
    3. Fully repent
    4. Pray Always
    5. Obey revelation
    6. Seek His will
    7. Charity
    8. Virtue
    9. Be a Servant
    10. Endure to the end

    Numbers 7-10 correspond to D&C 121:45-46

    Liked by 18 people

  2. daniel Dylan says:

    This was a tremendous, beautiful spiritual feast! I have been so looking forward to this chapter and your insights into the Lords scriptures. I can’t thank you enough. It was all I hoped for and more. I now have so much to ponder and reflect upon. Thank you PR! And I thank the Lord for allowing you to share all you have from your personal journal and time spent in His presence. God bless you for sharing.

    Liked by 7 people

  3. S Silver says:

    Vs 2: “Yea, blessed are they who shall believe in your words, and come down into the depths of humility and be baptized, for they shall be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and shall receive a remission of their sins.”

    I was going to ask if this promise still held true today if we believed these Nephite disciple’s teachings. As I highlighted the sentence to copy it here, the Lord suddenly replied to my mental question that it held true of all His servants, including [PR]!

    And I felt personally chagrined because I should be asking the Lord EVERYTHING first! (I do still SO enjoy this BoM study together. I want to meet all of you – PR and fellow commenters – in real life some day!)

    Liked by 14 people

  4. Nate says:

    When He gave the Nephites the Beattitudes sermon, it was if course individually face to face, and not as a sermon to their group, is that right? [No, he “cried unto them” and raised His voice, which is stated in verse one. PR]

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Nate says:

    “Most who receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost remain in a state of terrestrial, where they abide with the Holy Ghost and can have the presence of the Son, but not yet the Father.”

    Does this mean 3rd estate angels? And that 3rd estate cannot talk with or see the Father face to face, as you have? [All third estate will see the Son, but not ascend to the Father. Refer to D&C 76:71-79 PR]

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Nate says:

    When you say not ascend to the Father, do you mean celestial glory? Everyone talks with the Father and Mother when they are created right? [Yes. PR]

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Anthony says:

    Thank you so much for everything PR.

    Quick question. You said this – [All third estate will see the Son, but not ascend to the Father.]

    It is my understanding that when we receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost (3rd estate), that we are begotten spiritually of Christ and then he becomes our Father. If we accept him as our Father then what is the meaning of what you wrote? Can you expand on that at all? [It is true that Jesus becomes our Father, as we are spiritually begotten of Him. But their is a patriarchy of Fathers. To be introduced to the Father in the Heavenly Realm we must ascend to the 4th estate. PR]

    Liked by 5 people

  8. For almost three years now is prompted to put one thing on my bedroom wall and that was the beatitudes of Jesus Christ! Now I realize the depth of their full meaning! I was prompted to go through each one and ask the Lord what once I should focus on and steps I need to do to acquire them individually! This is mind-blowing, thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Nate says:

    His servants are told to turn the other check and love their enemies, but He has also directed His servants to wield the sword on occasion(Nephi killing Laban, Mormon and Moroni, ect). But in another place He says, those who live by the sword will die by the sword. How should we reconcile some of this? [It is simple – Keep the commandments, but expect the Lord to direct your paths and not to lean on the arm of flesh. Generally, we are not to harm another, but if the Lord gives a clear revelation, and you have the kind of relationship where you know His voice conclusively, you won’t need to ask the question. PR]

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Nate says:

    Would the Ten Commandments of the New Covenent been given to the people of Moses had they been righteous and faithful?… was this given to the people of Enoch and Salem? [They would have been given the exact same thing the Nephites received in Bountiful. How it would have been written down, I do not know. In my breakdown in the BofM Thoughts I refer to it as the 10 Commandments of the New Covenant, but more fully, it is the pattern of the Everlasting Covenant in relation to this world. PR]

    Liked by 2 people

  11. truthseeker1820 says:

    What is meant by the phrase, “take up your cross” or “take up my cross and follow me”? [I haven’t asked the Lord that specific question. My understanding is that it means to choose Him and all the sacrifice that requires. PR]

    Like

  12. SoGrtful says:

    You said this (after vs 30): [Those who struggle with a spirit of lust must endeavor to “deny” themselves any access to these images, thoughts, and temptations. Why is it so critical? It is Satan’s greatest lure for the Sons of God, both in this life and the next.] And then a little later you say, [The more a servant can resist these temptations in this life the stronger and more focused they will be in the next.] By next life, do you mean the millennium? If so, perhaps this is the downfall of some toward the end.

    If we weren’t sufficiently battle tested in this area in this life due to say paralysis from a dirt bike accident, would we get the opportunity to further prove ourselves all through and to the end of the millennium so we wouldn’t have to carry this issue as much into another life?

    What you say about focus seems to be one of the things meant by ‘advantage in the world to come’ as noted in D&C 130:19. (And if a person gains more knowledge and intelligence in this life THROUGH HIS DILIGENCE AND OBEDIENCE than another, he will have so much the advantage in the world to come). [The “focus” is the degree of relationship one establishes with the Lord. “Knowledge” is the knowledge of God, which is synonymous with priesthood or relationship. The Millenium is the last dispensation of this world, but not the finality of the Terrestrial realm, where angels dwell before they rise to the next estate. Satan’s ability to tempt is limited in that realm, but if an angel of God turns inward, seeking their own gratification, choosing to follow the lusts of their heart, they can fall. This is what Enoch referred to as ‘The Watchers.” If someone were to not have the ability because of an accident or otherwise to master such things in this life it is not the end. There has been many such opportunities to develop temperance for each soul during the course of this world’s existence. I can’t comment on that topic more than that. PR]

    Liked by 3 people

  13. John Crane says:

    Relative to SoGrtful’s question, I would like to get into just what exactly is a “relationship” with the Lord? How would you define “knowledge of God”? Is it just knowing a bunch of facts that you can recite about God, and list them in a book, so that people will ask you questions, or is it knowing what God knows? Or even more, feeling as God feels, and loving as God loves? And absolute and utter trust in Him. Priesthood is surely a function of our relationship with the Lord, but it appears to me that the relationship must consist of much more than simply “knowledge of God”. [I think you know the answer. Knowing about something is not the same as first hand experience. I’m speaking of the knowledge of intimacy of the relationship as experienced in the gift of the Spirit, specifically Charity and the Second Comforter. PR]

    And that that kind of relationship, struggling with a spirit of lust, as mentioned above, becomes less of a struggle to deny yourself of these things, and more of a longing desire and a preference for the companionship of the Lord, which eclipses anything this world has to offer.

    You teach a lot about faith, and it has helped me a lot, because I can see through your writings what faith can do, and I have come to see in my life what faith can do. I hope nothing in the comment makes you think I don’t respect and honor your relationship with the Lord, because I do, and I honor your testimony. [Its not important whether you like me, respect me, believe me, and so forth. It is nice of you to say that though. I do have feelings, but by nature of this blog I hope that people will be indifferent about me, and even dismiss who I am, only focusing on the words and how it leads them to ask the Lord questions and find Him in that process. PR]

    Liked by 2 people

  14. FireWalk.7 says:

    When Christ said “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”, was this same attitude of love, forgiveness and praying for your enemies applied to the Pharisee’s as well? [When the Lord spoke this he was praying for those whose actions were without knowledge. He felt compassion for those who truly did not know what they were doing. However, the Pharisees were not innocent participants. They had carefully crafted, by the power of Satan, the means to crucify their God. They were not innocent of their great sin. But, they too can be forgiven if they chose to be, as was Judas. PR]

    Liked by 1 person

  15. FireWalk.7 says:

    “Adultery is to be unclean before God in marriage and will prevent them from ascending to Him.”

    Does this only involve cheating on one’s spouse, or involving other people in a marriage- r can adultery (being unclean in marriage) involve other things? [In can involve any kind of infidelity of marriage. PR]

    Liked by 2 people

  16. FireWalk.7 says:

    Is it possible to be unclean before God in marriage without infidelity? [Any sin will make you unclean before God. PR]

    Liked by 1 person

  17. elethu xapa says:

    What exactly is hell? Is it a metaphorical word that defines the state of a place a spirit shall reside in as they remain telestial(not submitting to all the lord’s requirements)? [Hell is both a place and a state of mind. It is where there is no hope for redemption. It’s a confusing concept for those who have not seen or experienced it. We use the word to describe great suffering and anguish in this world, but for those who willingly strive to join with Satan, it is their ambition to go there. For the damned, it is a place of unchecked and constant debauchery and self gratification, where their worm never dies. Like a dark paradise for addicts, they have no desire for anything else. This is truly “Hell,” and what Satan’s followers seek. PR]

    Like

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