Scripture Roundtable 35: D&C Gospel Doctrine Lesson 31, “Sealed … for Time and for All Eternity”

(Originally published on 13 July 2013.)

This is Scripture Roundtable 35 from The Interpreter Foundation, in which we discuss Doctrine & Covenants Gospel Doctrine Lesson #31, “Sealed … for Time and for All Eternity,” focusing on D&C 131, and 132, bringing in various insights to help us better understand the scriptures. These roundtables will generally follow the 2013 Gospel Doctrine schedule of scriptures, a few weeks ahead of time.

Some interesting highlights from this roundtable discussion include:

  • The LDS concept of heaven centers around family.  This flows naturally from the LDS concept of heavenly parents.  Eliza R. Snow said she learned the principle of heavenly parents from Joseph Smith, which inspired her to write her famous poem “O My Father” hymn 292 in our LDS hymnal, which says in part:
    I had learned to call thee Father, Through thy Spirit from on high,But until the key of knowledge Was restored, I knew not why.In the heavens are parents single? No, the thought makes reason stare!Truth is reason, truth eternal Tells me I’ve a mother there. (See Eliza R. Snow, “My Father in Heaven”, Times and Seasons, vol. 5, p. 1039 (15 November 1845)).
  • Another LDS hymn, “Oh, What Songs of the Heart” hymn 286, mentions meeting our heavenly parents after this life.
  • These concepts of Heaven are quite distinct from the rest of Judaism and Christianity, which views God as a “parent” of the human family, metaphorically at most, certainly not literally as do LDS.
  • The sealing concept is the way LDS believe God authenticates, authorizes and makes permanent family relationships so they last beyond this life, thus making our families like God’s family.  D&C Sections 131 and 132 focus on these most important concepts.
  • Malachi did not say “it would be a pretty good idea” for the hearts of the fathers to turn to their children and for the hearts of the children to turn to their fathers, he said if not so, the earth would be wasted at the second coming of Jesus Christ.  Thus, Malachi teaches us sealing power is most important!

Panelists for this roundtable include Brant Gardner, Craig Foster, and Martin Tanner.

This roundtable is also available as an audio podcast, and will be included in the podcast feed. You can listen by pressing the play button or download the podcast below:

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Scripture Roundtable 60: Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson 10, Birthright Blessings, Marriage in the Covenant

This is Scripture Roundtable 60 from The Interpreter Foundation, in which we discuss the Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Lesson #10, Birthright Blessings, Marriage in the Covenant, focusing on scriptures in Genesis 24-29, bringing in various insights to help us better understand the scriptures. These roundtables will generally follow the 2014 Gospel Doctrine schedule of scriptures, a few weeks ahead of time.

Panelists for this roundtable include Jeffrey Bradshaw, Martin Tanner, Bruce Webster, and Andrew Smith.

This roundtable is also available as an audio podcast, and will be included in the podcast feed. You can listen by pressing the play button or download the podcast below:

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“Birthright Blessings; Marriage in the Covenant” Genesis 24-29

“My beloved is mine” (Song of Solomon 2:16)

The Old Testament: A Worthy Labor

Studying the Old Testament is at once both a marvelous joy and a challenge.  Herein we find inspiring stories of faith, sacrifice and obedience of those who called down the powers of heaven to bless their lives, their families and all that they possessed.  Yet herein we also find stories that are curious if not baffling to our present day values and perspectives.  Such is the case for our present lesson that covers six fascinating and varied chapters from the Book of Genesis.  In brief, these six chapters cover the time from Isaac marrying Rebecca to Jacob’s marriage of Rachel and Leah.  Intertwined in these narratives are numerous references to promised blessings, birthrights, and the power of God in sustaining his covenant promises.  These narratives also take us through highlights of those venerable individuals, couples and families that we associate with birthright blessings and marriage in the covenant. Continue reading