Monday, April 25, 2016

Today's Favorite Verse: Ether 1:6, 32-34

Today's Favorite Verse: Ether 1:6, 32-34
"And on this wise do I give the account. He that wrote this record was Ether, and he was a descendant of Coriantor.
[genealogy for 26 generations]
And Kib was the son of Orihah, who was the son of Jared;
Which Jared came forth with his brother and their families, with some others and their families, from the great tower, at the time the Lord confounded the language of the people, and swore in his wrath that they should be scattered upon all the face of the earth; and according to the word of the Lord the people were scattered.
And the brother of Jared being a large and mighty man, and a man highly favored of the Lord, Jared, his brother, said unto him: Cry unto the Lord, that he will not confound us that we may not understand our words."

It is now somewhere between 401-421 AD. Moroni the last surviving Nephite must be safe inside a cave within the Hill Cumorah. He has at his disposal all the records of the Nephite Nation. One set of records was actually not their own. It was the records of an ancient group of people at the time of the great tower (Tower of Babel). Starting around 2600-2100 BC. God had promised them he would not confuse their language, so they were led away to the American continent. This group of people were called the Jaredites. 

Somewhere around 200 BC the people of king Limhi discovered the 24 Jaredite plates and king Mosiah was able to translate them. Their history could have covered anywhere from 1500 to 2500 years. It tells a history of the Jaredite people, and what caused the complete destruction of their civilization. The last surviving Jaredite was Coriantumr who was discovered by the Mulekites before king Mosiah and his people arrived in the land of Zarahemla. Moroni is now abridging their records and including them at the end of the Book of Mormon. It is called the Book of Ether, after the last Jaredite prophet who recorded this record. I'm sure Moroni saw much parallel to what had happened to his people, and since he has seen our day, he is including the most important parts for our profit and learning.

One of the things I have often wondered about is why is the reference always made of the brother of Jared and never his name? Why doesn't it just begin with the brother of Jared because he sounds like he is their prophet. Jared is always going to him to ask him to speak to the Lord for them. As I was reading the genealogy I realized that Ether is a direct descendant of Jared. Not a descendant of the brother of Jared. He is honoring his direct ancestor by starting this records with Jared. I think it also possible that Jared is the eldest brother and the leader of this group. His brother is their spiritual leader. That is why there is always a reference to Jared asking his brother to speak to the Lord for them. It really made me think about what a difference the roles would have been if Laman and Lemuel the elder brothers of Nephi could have adopted this same respect for their roles. Laman could have led his family, but referred to Nephi as their spiritual leader. Both are vital roles and didn't need to be held by just one person in the family. Each family member is unique with strengths and weaknesses, we are sent here with defined roles to play that will bless each member. It makes me appreciate these brothers even more that they could work together and humbly play their parts. Jared was never challenged by what his brother told him were the words of the Lord, and would do whatever was commanded. This make me appreciate Jared all the more. That would be a sign of a great leader.

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