Monday, April 28, 2014

End of the line

Dear Readers,

I am sorry, I had planned to accomplish much more of these chapters of Job, and maybe I will finish them in the future, but as for now, alas, I shall take a break.

Elder Smithson

Monday, March 17, 2014

Job In Depth Study 21

Dear Readers,

Today I will talk about Job 40:1-5.

1 Moreover the Lord answered Job, and said,

2 Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? he that reproveth God, let him answer it.

So, God is letting Job know, that some of what he was saying was against/contending with God's word. And now Job must speak.

3 ¶Then Job answered the Lord, and said,

4 Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee? I will lay mine hand upon my mouth.

Here Job starts off saying, "Behold" look at me, look at all that You have taught me and said. "I am vile". I have sinned against Thee, I am unclean before Thee. I think this question is more towards himself. "what shall I answer thee?" What would any of us answer God after receiving such a sermon? What answer would be satisfactory? God knows the answers, so what would be the consequence of getting them wrong? So Job would lay his hand upon his mouth. Stopping his own speech least he brings himself under more condemnation. 

5 Once have I spoken; but I will not answer: yea, twice; but I will proceed no further. 

Job, in the presence of Deity, has spoken, indeed but is not willing to answer His current question, "shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him?" Job even knows the answer to two of God's questions, but, will not even attempt to proceed further. 

I have proceeded further, in an attempt to understand the scriptures. Indeed, faced in the very presence of God or His voice from the whirlwind, I do not believe I could speculate. Thus is why, we must commune with God, and allow his goodness to leave impressions upon us. That we may know His will.

Elder Smithson

Monday, March 10, 2014

Job In Depth Study 20

Dear Readers,

Today I will talk about Job 39:26-30. Finishing up Job 39.

26 Doth the hawk fly by thy wisdom, and stretch her wings toward the south?

 27 Doth the eagle mount up at thy command, and make her nest on high?

I think that for most people, including myself, the eagle is the sign of freedom. So do free people, people with agency, choose to follow God, or Job, and make their home and abode "on hight"?

 28 She dwelleth and abideth on the rock, upon the crag of the rock, and the strong place.

Being built upon the rock of Christ, a sure foundation (Helaman 5:12) is the only way for the righteous to prosper.

 29 From thence she seeketh the prey, and her eyes behold afar off.

Having the eternal perspective. Seeing the end game, the goal, and the purpose of all.

 30 Her young ones also suck up blood: and where the slain are, there is she.

Those who follow her, the righteous, are nourished. This last part has two meanings for me. First, where the carcass, the nourishment, the victory ground is, there are the righteous reaping the benefits. Or, martyrs. People who have died for a cause, the cause of God.

I know that this is all scatter brained, but it is both wonderful and interesting to see that the last parable that God uses for this chapter is directing people, look to Christ, look to God, do righteousness, and you will be free. Choose to be free!

Elder Smithson

Monday, March 3, 2014

Job in depth study 19

Dear Readers,

Today we will be talking about Job 39:19-25. What I like here is that God lead up to it by talking about how the ostrich hates the horse and it's rider.

19 Hast thou given the horse strength? hast thou clothed his neck with thunder?

I love this. God gives the horse it's strength. Through nourishment, training by experience. Then clothing it's neck with thunder. I like thinking of the old war horses, that would be clothed with armor, like the armor of God. Also, the stampede of hooves beating the earth as they run can sound like thunder. Fast like lightning. Kind of like that football movie, Windrunner. Where the Native American gentleman rides the horse off a cliff and they disappear in a lightning strike. So random and yet so cool.

20 Canst thou make him afraid as a grasshopper? the glory of his nostrils is terrible.

Good old memories. I remember going blow gun hunting with my father. Shooting those darts, mostly at targets, but occasionally lizards, birds, and you guessed it, grasshoppers. They really are skittish, flying around, trying to escape, running into things in their panic. Mostly opposite of A Bugs Life.

Some horses, especially if they are not trained, are equally skittish and afraid. But when they are trained, they are loyal, excellent beasts. Indeed, a few weeks ago Elder Yeske and I were exploring some ruins on a ranch. Suddenly a bunch of horses charged at Elder Yeske. I got pictures. Indeed their "pant" can be ferocious and yet kind. Indeed gloryfull.

 21 He paweth in the valley, and rejoiceth in his strength: he goeth on to meet the armed men.

Horses pawing the ground. Rejoicing in his strength, the strength he has received from God, and he goes forth into the battle.

22 He mocketh at fear, and is not affrighted; neither turneth he back from the sword.

23 The quiver rattleth against him, the glittering spear and the shield.


We are all in a battle. A battle between good an evil. How can we be brave like this horse, without God on our side. How can we stand, when arrows of the adversary fly by, or the shine of the world and temptation blinds us from our true purpose.

24 He swalloweth the ground with fierceness and rage: neither believeth he that it is the sound of the trumpet.

The sound of the trumpet. It reminds me of the second verse of Hymn 60 Battle Hymn of the Republic: "[God] is sounding forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat."

The trumpet of war has sounded, though there may be voices saying the battle is over, that there is no need to fight. Or even, God has lost.  We must not let our guard down, we must not give in, we must trust in God. 

25 He saith among the trumpets, Ha, ha; and he smelleth the battle afar off, the thunder of the captains, and the shouting.

He hears the captains call. He heeds the prophet's voice. This is not a time of peace, but a continue war, until the Great Jehovah shall say, "The work is done."

May we give ear to the Prophet's voice. May we heed our captains and our leaders. May we smell the battle and know it is there. We may not always see it, but if we know it is there, we can continue fighting for what is right.

Elder Smithson

Monday, February 24, 2014

Job in depth Study 18

Dear Readers,

Today we will go over Job 39:13-18

13 Gavest thou the goodly wings unto the peacocks? or wings and feathers unto the ostrich?

This may seem strange. Peacocks, in my opinion, do indeed have beautiful feathers. Yet from what I understand, they are very insanity creatures. Not taking care of their feathers and getting very dirty. I only know a little about them, due to some loose ones somewhat near where I lived in Cottonwood.

The second part about the ostriches clears is up though. Mostly because ostriches are large flightless birds that mostly use their wings for balance.

14 Which leaveth her eggs in the earth, and warmeth them in dust,

15 And forgetteth that the foot may crush them, or that the wild beast may break them.

From what I understand, so feel free to comment if I am incorrect, but the peacocks are good with their eggs. The ostriches, on the other hand, do indeed leave their eggs in large shallow holes mostly exposed to the elements. Sometimes, even abandoned for large periods of time.

16 She is hardened against her young ones, as though they were not hers: her labour is in vain without fear;

I think that the "fear" word here is nicely placed. So is "vain".

Vanity, as we usually think of it today, is self obsessed, prideful, and mostly being focused on one's own appearance, whether physical or social. But generally in the past, vain has similar relations to fruitless. Like planting a tree, or vine, watering and nourishing it for years, and then it being burned down before you get the fruit, or rewards from your labor. Your efforts to grow the tree in order to get fruit from it was pointless, or vain. So the ostrich's labor, possibly actual labour, as in laying the eggs, would be pointless if the eggs are trampled and crushed.

Now "without fear". How many mothers and fathers worry and care about their children? They are afraid for them. So simply, that makes sense. But also, " fear" in the Old Testament, like the "fear of God" works as being actually afraid of punishment or retribution, but was initially meant as honor. God commanded that we honor our father and mother. So I think of two things. 1: the offspring do not honor the mother, because of the neglect, and that the ostrich has no honor. 2: that the ostrich shows no honor to the children, nor to her great Creator.

17 Because God hath deprived her of wisdom, neither hath he imparted to her understanding.

Why would God withhold blessings such as these? Maybe because she did not honor the blessing she already received, children, wings, feathers. Maybe because she was meant for other things,

18 What time she lifteth up herself on high, she scorneth the horse and his rider.

With this scripture, my mind immediately goes to Prince of Persia. When he is captured by the merchant with the ostrich racing. The one time that the ostrich finds it's place, finds it's talents for running, it becomes prideful, and thus hates the horse and it's rider, because they are better. Like in 2 Timothy 3:3 "despisers of those that are good", so are all those who fall into the trap of pride, and are in wickedness.

So, a few things we can learn from this is, honor, and be thankful for the blessings God gives you. Then He will give you more. Then also shall the talents that you already possess be used for your good, instead of just causing you more despair because you are not like others. God will help you see the truth, that God has made you the way you are, for a reason, and that good things will come.

Until next time...
Elder Smithson

Monday, February 10, 2014

Job in depth study 17

Dear Readers,

Today we will be talking about Job 39:9-12

9 Will the unicorn be willing to serve thee, or abide by thy crib?

First of all, I would like to make it clear, we are not talking about actual unicorns. They are actually bulls or oxen. But I will admit, having a pet unicorn would be nice. Anyway, God is asking if the ox would serve Job, not just serve but watch over him as baby, or even his children.

10 Canst thou bind the unicorn with his band in the furrow? or will he harrow the valleys after thee?

I don't use words like "furrow" very often, but that is the ditch that is made by a plow. So, God is asking if Job could strap or yoke (the large wooden brace upon an ox's shoulders) the ox so that it can work. Or could Job lead the ox in its work.

11 Wilt thou trust him, because his strength is great? or wilt thou leave thy labor to him?

"Wilt" derived from "will" a conscious effort, choice of agency. Putting trust in this beast, because of its physical strength. Letting it labor in Job's stead.

12 Wilt thou believe him, that he will bring home thy seed, and gather it into thy barn?

Again, that funny word "wilt". Believe the ox, like the ox said something. Oh, the ox said it would bring the grain into the house and barn.

I like having a pondering parable mind. I shall liken Christ to the Unicorn. Something/someone that we consider magically powerful, rare and majestic. The first question is, will the Unicorn serve Job. Will Christ look after him, then as Jehovah. Indeed, God, and Christ, looked over him from the moment of his birth.

Then, can Job put labors upon Christ. Can he knowingly do things that would make His burden greater. Or will he be a representative, going before Christ's face and preparing the way.

Then, can Job trust Christ, put his faith in Him, because of the wonders and works He will do, or would it rather be because of what love Christ has for him. Since Job was pleading for death, God could be asking him, if he would be willing to trust completely in God and Christ to finish the work, and bring peace and happiness to him, and those of the posterity of Adam.

Then directly asking: "Wild thou believe him[?]"  God and Christ are telling him that everything is going to be okay. That They are watching over him, and his personal descendents, his seed, his children. Even though they were slain. Indeed, not just them, but all the fruits of his labor, will God and Christ bring into the storehouse, bring them home. Lay them up in store that he may have them again.

Can you trust in Christ? Can you put your faith in Him, that everything is going to be okay? Indeed, He has said that He will take care of us. Love us. Watch over us. Even "suffer the little children to come unto [Him]" May we all love Christ, and put our trust in Him.

Elder Smithson

Monday, February 3, 2014

Job In Depth Study 16

Dear Readers,

Today we have another parable. Job 39:5-8 talks about an ass, aka a donkey.

5 Who hath sent out the wild ass free? or who hath loosed the bands of the wild ass?

This implies that first of all, there was someone involved, and that the donkey was bound.

6 Whose house I have made the wilderness, and the barren land his dwellings.

The donkey's home or dwelling or abode God has made in the wilderness and barren or dry empty land.

7 He scorneth the multitude of the city, neither regardeth he the crying of the driver.

The donkey has thoughts, hate and mocking of people in the city, where he is not. Nor does he listen or esteem the counsel, or commands of his overseer.

8 The range of the mountains is his pasture, and he searcheth after every green thing.

He feeds in the mountains, were people are not, and he is actively looking, indeed searching for every, not just some, but every green thing. That which is good and nourishing.

I think of this parable in two main ways. First is as something we should do, the second as something we should not do

Firstly, we could answer the first question with Christ. He is the one that has freed us from sin and death. God has made us in the world, but not of the world, or not in the city. We dislike the worldly things, though they are nice and easy, we are living a better life, though it may be harder. Nor do we listen to the enticing of those who would make us slaves to our appetites. We are in the high places, and we look for all that is good. Sounds fairly accurate to me.

Secondly, more of the stubborn ass approach. A more sincere question, why would the donkey be loose. Loosed from what bands? Possibly the bands of commandments, or covenants. Loosed from all obligations. So, who looses these bands? The donkey himself. He is the one who chooses whether or not to be bound by his covenants to God. So he is cast out, good for nothing in the kingdom of God. Left with little food, no shelter, and exposed to the buffetings of the elements. Because of this, he hates the righteous, those who are in the city. Nor does he listen to those who try to help, and lead him back. To help him make something of his life. He tries to gain knowledge and nourishment the hard way, in the mountains. Searching after every good thing, or every thing that brings him pleasure, even though it might lead him away from food for life, in his master's house.

Which ass are you going to be?

Make the decision now.

Elder Smithson

Monday, January 27, 2014

Job in depth study 15

Dear Readers,

Today I am continuing on about Job 39:1-4. God just brought Job up to spread about the creation, and now He is about to help him grow by talking about animals, asking him questions to get him thinking, and ultimately use parables.

1 Knowest thou the time when the wild goats of the rock bring forth? or canst thou mark when the hinds do calve?

I think of two possibilities with this. Either Job has been hunting a few times, so that he knows about the "wild goats" and the "hinds" or deer. Or, because of the many herds of animals Job once had, he does not know much at all concerning them.

2 Canst thou number the months that they fulfil? or knowest thou the time when they bring forth?

Another great question... One that in my opinion Job would not know the answer to. The average deer is between 5-6 months. Usually going into labor in May or June. What is the relevance of these questions though?

3 They bow themselves, they bring forth their young ones, they cast out their sorrows.

4 Their young ones are in good liking, they grow up with corn; they go forth, and return not unto them.

Alas, God brings in the relevance, like these "wild" animals, animals that rely wholly upon God for their needs and wants whether they realize it or not, labor and toil to bring life into this world. They are born good, without sorrows, and grow with good foods. Making them healthy and strong. Then they go forth and continue the cycle, and they don't return to their parents.

That last thought, "and return not unto them." It seems like a two way street. The parents trust that the children have been raised properly, and that they will make right decisions. The children look forward and not back.

 Though we must look to our God, our Father in Heaven, and come back to Him when the time comes, like when children return to their parents when they are old. I am not sure yet if that is even a point that God will make soon or not, so I guess we will have to continue on with the study.

I hope that you learned and are now thinking. Until next time!

Elder Smithson

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Job In Depth Study 14

Dear Readers,

I have decided to keep it kind or short and sweet today. Job 38:37-41

37 Who can number the clouds in wisdom? or who can stay the bottles of heaven,

38 When the dust groweth into hardness, and the clods cleave fast together?

We were talking about heavens, seasons, waters, but what happens when it dries up? Like droughts and famous of old, it can be wrought by prophets to bring the people to repentance.

39 Wilt thou hunt the prey for the lion? or fill the appetite of the young lions,

40 When they couch in their dens, and abide in the covert to lie in wait?

41 Who provideth for the raven his food? when his young ones cry unto God, they wander for lack of meat.

In the creation, the next step after plants was animals. As it shows here, emphasizing how it is God who provides for their needs. Also showing the correlations between droughts and the nature of living organisms. We all need the blessings of God in our lives. I testify this to you, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Job in depth study 13

Dear Readers,
Today I thought that I would talk a little about Job 38:33-36. For the context, we were just talking about plants and season in relation to the creation.

33 Knowest thou the ordinances of heaven? canst thou set the dominion thereof in the earth?

What is an ordinance? An ordinance is an outward expression of faith. Such as baptism, which is also a covenant. Also, the sacrifices of the Old Testament were ordinances. Indeed we have sacred ordinances that are performed in the temples that allow us to further covenant with our Father in Heaven.

So with this definition of "ordinance" what would they be in heaven. Possibly righteous ordinances, or proper covenants made by the priesthood authority of God. More likely given the context, it is the planets in their systems.

For fun lets break down "ordinance" into "ordain". To ordain is to set apart, or give authority and responsibility to some one, or something. So maybe the planets and the signs of the sky are "ordained" to purposes. Or perhaps pre-ordination, ordaining of individuals in the pre-mortal life.

This would also make sense with all of the questions God has been asking Job. Can you do this, do you know that. Maybe God is asking him if he knows what he was fore-ordained to do.

"Canst thou set the dominion thereof in the earth?" "Dominion" or authority, stewardship or even power or the ordinances. Could Job give the authority of heaven to people on the earth? Or set stewardships? Do those ordinances have power upon the earth? Oooo!

The Sun is to rule the day, and the moon the night, according to Genesis, maybe the "ordinances" of the stars also have dominion upon the earth.

34 Canst thou lift up thy voice to the clouds, that abundance of waters may cover thee?

As far as I can tell, God is asking Job if he can call down rain. Or flood.

35 Canst thou send lightnings, that they may go, and say unto thee, Here we are?

Lightning, or voice of lightning, like angels.

36 Who hath put wisdom in the inward parts? or who hath given understanding to the heart?

These last two questions are the same. Basically asking, "Who is the Holy Ghost? and what is His purpose?" Makes me wonder, if the Holy Ghost, under the direction of the Father of All, makes it possible to have the priesthood and perform saving ordinances such as baptism. Indeed even the power of God to perform miracles, and call forth angels. Then the greatest of all, to touch the human heart and testify to them of truth, that they may learn, grow, and be protected.

I hope that the Holy Ghost was with you as you read this.

Elder Smithson

Thursday, January 9, 2014

In Depth Study of Job 12

Dear Readers,
My apologies. It has been a long time since my last post. It is amazing how thing can get away from you. To continue on, we were talking about plants, and the water cycle. So, what does Job 38:31-32 have to share with us.

31 Canst thou bind the sweet influences of Pleiades, or loose the bands of Orion?

God is asking if Job is able to control, or hold back the pleasant, or enjoyable influences of Pleiades. I am not an astrologer, so I had to look it up, but Pleiades is a 7 sisters star cluster.
So, with this knowledge I think of two things: first, astrology, that stars and times have influences over people, especially at birth. Secondly, I think of gravitational forces, how stars move, hold their orbits and spread their "influence" through space. But it is a pleasant influence, so it must cause good, which ever influence it might be referring to.

"Loose the bands of Orion". I am fairly confident in assuming that is in reference to Orion's Belt. Is it possible for Job to make, or have, the stars move our of their proper alignment? In relation to my reasoning above, I wonder if somehow the gravity of the three stars in Orion's Belt actually bind orbits or other astral phenomena together. Maybe the next verse will help clarify things.

32 Canst thou bring forth Mazzaroth in his season? or canst thou guide Arcturus with his sons?

 Mazzaroth is the group name of constellations, kind of like a biblical zodiac. Stars and signs in the sky have always been in prophecies and predictions, as well as indicators of seasons. Stars, seasons, water cycles, plants, this is beginning to make a little more sense.

Kind of for fun, what if we looked at the astrological side of it, specifically in influence on personalities. This could almost be asking if it is possible to bring the personality of the person at
their birth. Interesting, but it does not quite fit in the context.

Arcturus is a star in the Bootes star constellation. The other stars contained therein are sometimes referred to as Arcturus's sons. Again, seasons, movement of stars, but also, a name for this constellation is Bootes the Herdsman, almost like he is herding his sons. 

Cool stuff. I hope that you enjoyed this, and it will be interesting to find out what the next scripture have for us.

Elder Smithson