Offerings to God – 3 Nephi 24:1-18

1 And it came to pass that he commanded them that they should write the words which the Father had given unto Malachi, which he should tell unto them. [The words of Malachi came after Lehi left Jerusalem, and the Lord gave the Nephites these important scriptures to study.] And it came to pass that after they were written he expounded them. And these are the words which he did tell unto them, saying: Thus said the Father unto Malachi—Behold, I will send my messenger [a Servant who shall prepare the way], and he shall prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom ye seek shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant [Jesus Christ], whom ye delight in; behold, he shall come, saith the Lord of Hosts.

2 But who may abide the day of his coming, [When is His coming for you? For these people in Bountiful it was that very day.] and who shall stand when he appeareth? For he is like a refiner’s fire [burn out the dross], and like fuller’s soap. [to make white and clean]

3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; and he shall purify the sons of Levi [those coming to the Lord], and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness. [be found worth to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.]

The Levites symbolize a class of people who are seeking the Lord in holiness. Today, many who are desperately seeking God have a priesthood distinction called Levite (though it is referred to as a “seeker of light and knowledge”). When they stand in the presence of God and are anointed a servant they have a higher relationship with God, which is referred to as Melchizedek. These are only word distinctions,  for to the Lord they represent different levels of relationship with Him.

4 Then shall the offering of Judah and Jerusalem be pleasant unto the Lord, as in the days of old, and as in former years. [The Jews will be reclaimed to the covenant and be made holy.]

5 And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger, and fear not me, saith the Lord of Hosts. [The Lord will separate them from the world, as they are received unto Him.]

6 For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob [those under My Covenant] are not consumed.

7 Even from the days of your fathers ye are gone away from mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto me and I will return unto you, saith the Lord of Hosts. But ye say: Wherein shall we return? [How do they return to the Lord of the Covenant?]

The following scriptures are often used to make a strong case for giving tithing to the church. This was not the point of these verses as they were given. The entire recorded book of Malachi is the Lord’s rebuke to the wicked Israelites, especially the priests and leaders who had made a mockery of the temple and all that was holy. They had used the tithes and offerings for their personal enrichment.

Under the Mosaic Law, one/tenth of what was gained was to be given to support the Levites who did not own land or work for a living. They were to be used to serve God and Israel, and help with priestly duties. The Levites lived meager lives of worship to the Lord and honored by the people for their sacrifice. Those who wished to self-select from other tribes to offer their lives to God were called Nazarites.

8 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say: Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings. [You priests of the temple have taken the sacrifices of the people and used them for your own benefit.]

9 Ye are cursed with a curse, for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation. [Your priesthood is gone, for you have taken what is not yours.]

10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in my house [Bring all the donations which are the great sacrifices of this people and apply them as has been commanded.]; and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of Hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it. [A spiritual blessing, which is greater than any worldly wealth.]

11 And I will rebuke the devourer [the Adversary] for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the fields, saith the Lord of Hosts. [The Lord will pour His spirit open them and their posterity unto a higher resurrection.]

12 And all nations shall call you blessed, for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the Lord of Hosts. [The land of your fathers shall become a mighty nation.]

13 Your words have been stout [belligerent and proud] against me, saith the Lord. Yet ye say: What have we spoken against thee? [What did we do wrong?]

14 Ye have said: It is vain to serve God, and what doth it profit that we have kept his ordinances and that we have walked mournfully before the Lord of Hosts? [We have seen no benefit for ourselves by following the laws with exactness. What’s in it for us?]

15 And now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered. [Now, we are living well, blessed with abundance because of the tithes and offerings of the people.]

16 Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another [The righteous knew better and found the Lord.], and the Lord hearkened and heard; and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon his name. [The names of the righteous were recorded, even if they were not noticed amongst the priests of the temple.]

17 And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day when I make up my jewels [anointed servants, calling and election made sure]; and I will spare them as a man spareth his own son that serveth him. [shall be rewarded for their obedience]

18 Then shall ye return and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him that serveth him not.

Why did the Lord feel it important to share the words of Malachi? He wanted to impress upon these people in Bountiful the importance of not abusing priestly power, to seek Him and to be the means to bring many souls to Him. According to the Mosaic Law it was commanded to bring sacrifice and to make offerings so that there would be meat and other needed items to further the building of the kingdom.

It is a good thing to pay tithes and offerings to help in building the kingdom of God. This is to be done between you and the Lord, not by constraint. The purpose of this chapter is not to warn those who give tithes, but to warn those who are the stewards of the Lord’s Storehouse.

When Zion is established there will not be a law of consecration of property and wealth by constraint. It will not be “enforced communism.” There will be unequal diversity of lands, houses, and possessions, as citizens seek to produce what is necessary to help the community. People will pay tithes and offerings according to what they can without hoarding their possessions. The difference in this community is that the Spirit of the Lord shall dwell amongst them without constraint. A pillar of light by day and a pillar of fire by night, as the glory of God surrounds them.

Those who cannot dwell amongst them will live around the city limits as they prepare themselves to also receive the fullness, benefitting from the protection of the city. A true Zion society is simply those who are one in their love for God and each other as they dwell in peace. For these, the Heavens open and revelations are poured out to the degree that eventually the city is prepared to be lifted up and taken unto God.

 

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10 Responses to Offerings to God – 3 Nephi 24:1-18

  1. daniel Dylan says:

    [“ When Zion, the New Jerusalem, is established there will not be a law of consecration of property and wealth by constraint. It will not be “enforced communism.” There will be unequal diversity of lands, houses, and possessions, as citizens seek to produce what is necessary to help the community. People will pay tithes and offerings according to what they can without hoarding their possessions. The difference in this community is that the Spirit of the Lord shall dwell amongst them without constraint. A pillar of light by day and a pillar of fire by night, as the glory of God surrounds them.“] Are you allowed to say more about Zion and how it will operate? I have always wondered about this. How will it be governed? Will the Savior literally be there continually living among the people? Some speculate Enoch’s Zion will be brought down and be the New Jerusalem, is this true? Some speculate great technology will be part of this city while others say it will be more simple like olden days. Will all the other Zions throughout the world function the same way as the New Jerusalem ? Since the Savior is omnipresent will He be the leader in all smaller Zions? There is so much speculation. What has the Lord revealed to you ? I tried to do a search of this topic among your writings , but only found a few things. Can you please reveal more? [The New Jerusalem will be a gathering place and administered by the 4th estate servants whose calling is to save the House of Israel. It will function according to the direction of Heaven, via angels and at times the Lord Himself. There will not be any other society on earth functioning the same as this place. There will be places of safety waiting to be gathered, but not like this. It will have a temple at its central place that will resemble the Enochian temple and when Christ comes only two land masses will be taken up – the old and new Jerusalem. These will be placed upon the renewed and glorified Terrestrial earth where they will be met by the City of Enoch. At this point there will be no need for a temple, for God will reign personally upon the earth and all will be revealed. At the end of the Millennium there will be a time of temptation before the new dispensation of the Great God commences and the earth will receive its Celestial Glory. PR]

    Liked by 11 people

  2. daniel Dylan says:

    PR ….thank you so much for your time spent in writing answers to our questions. A feast of truth to ponder in your last answer. Thank you so much!!! The Savior’s continued blessings upon your mission of truth and revelation.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Lyle Wood says:

    When the two land masses that are taken up inhabit the new and glorified Terrestrial earth, will that be a new earth? In other words a different earth? -Lyle [It is the literal resurrection of the earth. The earth has a spirit and it shall be glorified, like a “new earth.” Then the holy cities shall be placed thereon and God will dwell upon it with the righteous. All things are a type for the Everlasting Covenant. PR]

    Liked by 4 people

  4. jaywez says:

    Is it taking God’s name in vain to cite priesthood authority one presumes to have through ordination in a church but that hasn’t actually come from God as you’ve described it after verse 7? I expect we can inwardly ask for heaven’s permission through faith and revelation in such cases, but is it improper to cite authority you haven’t actually received? It is a tradition to cite this authority when giving a blessing, but it’s really more the church’s permission to do things than God’s permission and I don’t want to conflate the two. [The Church can give authority to do things within the Church, but only God can give authority to speak in His name and do miracles. Whenever giving a blessing or ordinance it is wise to ask the Lord for permission and authority and not assume anything. If one were to act without permission it would indeed be using the Lord’s name in vain. PR]

    Liked by 3 people

  5. S Silver says:

    Brother PR, thank you for taking the time to share and expound so much!

    Malachi 3 used to make me feel like the Lord was scolding me any time I would happen to flip open to it.

    He finally taught me (by directing me to Malachi 2:1) that He was talking to the leaders. The Lord once told me that when it came to tithing I could either obey or disobey but I could not rob Him. I was so grateful for His answer! But of course that seemed to lead to me asking new questions! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Nate says:

    “It will function according to the direction of Heaven, via angels and at times the Lord Himself. There will not be any other society on earth functioning the same as this place. There will be places of safety waiting to be gathered, but not like this. It will have a temple at its central place that will resemble the Enochian temple and when Christ comes only two land masses will be taken up – the old and new Jerusalem.”

    What about First Zion? [It functions the same, but will not be taken up with the other two. PR]

    Liked by 4 people

  7. S Silver says:

    From a previous comment:

    “What about First Zion? [It functions the same, but will not be taken up with the other two. PR]”

    What about the Hidden City you visited in the book, where you marveled at how they hid. Is that a city of righteousness that is aspiring to qualify to be taken up one day?

    Or is it a safe haven where seekers of light and truth have gathered and are growing together? [All those whose lamps are filled will be taken up when the bridegroom comes, but only two physical cities are taken up. PR]

    Liked by 4 people

  8. daniel Dylan says:

    In the first question above you stated in your comment this , [“ It will have a temple at its central place that will resemble the Enochian temple “] I have never heard of an Enochian Temple. Can you please explain what this is . I would really appreciate it if you could include a few details about this temple. I am fascinated about new things I’ve never heard of before. I tried to find a reference in the scriptures and I failed. I also tried a search on your blog and found no mention of it. Thank you so much for your patience with my questions. [The Enochian Temple is pyramidical. It is laid out in an ascension pattern, and teaches the fullness of the Everlasting Covenant. The temple also changes the land around which it is built. This pure temple is the type that was sought for by all the ancients. There were many imitations, but few reached it to perfection. PR]

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Matt Owens says:

    It’s interesting that in verse 1 Jesus says the Father told Malachi these things. The Book of Malachi quotes “The Lord” who I have understood refers to Jesus Christ. Can we know when “The Lord” means Jesus Christ or Heavenly Father in the scriptures? [Most all the prophets are communicating with the Jesus Christ. PR]

    Like

  10. MRR says:

    Do we receive the same blessings promised to the Israelites? If yes, why? Why would we when we are not the chosen people?

    I suppose a better question is: are there blessings for the chosen people that you and I will never have a chance to achieve?

    Following up on that, why is there even a chosen people like the Israelites? Why do they seem so… UN-chosen right now? If we can be grafted in, why bother with a chosen people at all?

    What did they do to find so much favor to God? Did they do something special in the pre earth life to deserve this chosen status on earth? yes? What?

    If yes, and we didn’t do what they did, why are we allowed to take hold of the iron rod and be redeemed?

    [Those are good questions. The answers are related to who we are before birth and the covenants made. The House of Israel are the very first of the new children of light (the first estate), and the earth was created specifically to help them ascend through the Everlasting Covenant. The children of men (gentiles) are older children of the Father who are invited to this world to also partake of the covenant if they choose (and most do not). It is during the Times of the Gentiles, after the House of Israel had rejected their King, that these spirits are given a full opportunity to receive the covenant. The Lord is eternally merciful, and when this world is finished He will raise up the wheat (those who have chosen Him) and the tares will go to their place according to righteous judgment. And, every soul will be satisfied with their place. PR]

    Liked by 2 people

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