Zion, Part 3

This entry is part 43 of 49 in the series JJ Lectures

As we continue the discussion of Zion I am going to read you one interesting scripture, D&C 84 verses 4 thru 5,

“Verily this is the word of the Lord, that the city New Jerusalem shall be built by the gathering of the saints, beginning at this place, even the place of the temple, which temple shall be reared in this generation. For verily this generation shall not all pass away until an house shall be built unto the Lord, and a cloud shall rest upon it, which cloud shall be even the glory of the Lord, which shall fill the house.”

If I remember right this was given in early 1832 and a generation is usually about 40 years or so. It has been quite a long time since then and there has been no temple built. Why is that? Now this was supposed to be the beginning of the creation of Zion, the building of the temple and it was supposed to have been built within a generation, an ironclad prophecy written there. First of all, did the prophecy come true or did it not come true? How does the Mormon Church explain this? The church explains it saying that a generation can be like a generation of the church or an era of time, which could last thousands of years.

The church used to have a different interpretation. The early apostle, Orson Pratt, interpreted it as a regular generation and expected many in his day to live to see the temple built. It was not built and everybody that heard this prophecy is now dead. To say a generation is like a generation of the church or a dispensation is really stretching it. We have to face the facts that this prophecy was expected to come true but it did not come true. Does this mean that this prophecy did or did not come from a higher power? You would think that if it failed then it did not come from a higher power but let me tell you something about prophecy. The future is never written in stone.

Now we go back to the days of the Bible and we can read those scriptures and of course the scribes that wrote the Bible only recorded the prophecies that came true. We do not hear about the ones that did not come true because they did not even record them. Now lets look at our modern day times. We have all types of people making prophecies, religious, spiritual, psychic people like Edgar Casey, Nostradamus, and so on. Has anyone in recorded history made predictions that have been 100% accurate? The answer is no, Did Jesus?

Let me tell you a prophecy that Jesus made that did not come true. Do you remember that Jesus was talking about the temple and He said that there would not be one stone left upon another in the temple. Did that come true? Have you ever heard of the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem? That is a piece of the temple where there is still one stone upon another. There are seven layers above ground and 17 below ground that been intact since the days of Jesus. So even that prophecy spoken by the Master Himself did not come 100% true. Interesting, is it not?

So this is the secret about prophecy that there is no person on the earth and not even God, no life form anywhere can predict everything that is going to happen. Now all the believers will say that is wrong, If I snap my fingers then they are saying that God knew a million years ago that I was going to do this at this time. Well the big question I have is why in the world would God even want to know that? Why would He want fill His universal mind with such clutter and trivial detail? Who would want to fill their mind with such clutter?

I used to think that if I could memorize the whole encyclopedia that I would really be smart but when I learned what true intelligence was I found out that was not true at all. A person with true intelligence does not fill his mind with a bunch of clutter. Why do you think we forget? We forget things to void our mind of clutter because if we didn’t forget things we would have so much data in our mind that we would not be able to think creatively.

You have heard about the absent minded professor – the great thinkers are absent minded and because they are kind of absent in their mind they can get rid of all the clutter and then they can really think creatively. When Einstein went for walks he would sometimes have his mind so blank that he would show up somewhere and he would say where am I? He did not know where he was and did not how to find his way home because he was so into what he was thinking that the world out there did not even exist and so he would wind up somewhere and not know where he was.

Many of the great thinkers in history have been this way and they have often been criticized for being absent minded. I am absent minded myself and I did a paper on it in college to try and figure out the cure for it and after doing lots of research and writing this paper the best advise I could find was from a guy that did research on it. He said the best thing that you can do is just get a good secretary. I thought you know that is probably right, that would relieve me of this absent-mindedness that I have and I concluded that the guy was on the right track.

It is impossible to predict the future beyond a certain point. What is predictable is if a highly intelligent being makes a firm decision and then decides to bring that decision to pass. If we have one of the gods or one of the masters making a decision and he wants to bring the decision to pass then he can make an accurate prophecy about that. If I say I am going to walk over and give Artie a kiss then I can predict that because it is under my power and I have committed myself to do it. I can predict it and can fulfill it, and now I am a true prophet. This is how the great lives that have worked through the prophets have made their prophecies come to pass because they have made decisions and they have told the prophets what there decisions are and then they have made their decisions come to pass.

But as far as events occurring in the normal stream of things because human free will is involved it is impossible to predict the future with 100% accuracy. So the fact that it was predicted that a temple would be built in this generation does not mean that it was not inspired, what it means is that it was supposed to be but it did not happen. The Master that was working with Joseph Smith anticipated this to happen but it did not happen.

Just before Joseph was killed he had a warrant out for his arrest and he was pacing the floor wondering what to do because he was telling the people, “if I am arrested one more time I will be killed or else I am not a true prophet.” He had a very strong feeling about this. He had a warrant out for his arrest and even though he had been arrested many times he had a strong feeling that if he was arrested one more time that he would be killed so he was pacing the floor trying to think of a solution.

As he was pacing the floor his scribe made note that all of a sudden he stopped and his face lit up and he said, “I know what to do – I have just received a revelation from God.” He said, “I will take a small group and go west to Oregon territory and there we will build the kingdom again.” We all know the story that he started to do that and then he received a letter from his wife saying that everyone was calling him a coward that he was the Sheppard that has left his flock to the wolves. Come back, they pleaded. He said to his brother if I come back then we will be killed. His brother said, “We have faced this many times and we have some out of it and we will come out of it again.” And Joseph said, “No, we will not this time, we will be slaughtered if we go back.” This was his biggest test in his life. For most of us our biggest test is around facing death but Joseph’s big test was the opposite: facing life. In other words, his big test was whether or not to live not whether or not to die. He was more afraid of being called a coward than he was of death and as a matter of fact he was almost looking forward to it because he was so tired of the trials he faced.

So rather than face being called a coward he would return and what really put the pressure on him was that his brother told him if you do not go back and face arrest then he would go back alone. Imagine his brother going back facing death making Joseph look like a coward. So rather than being called a coward he went back but in going back he disobeyed the revelation because the revelation told him to go to Oregon.

In going back he failed an initiation which in esoteric writings is called the fourth initiation which is the same initiation that Abraham took and Jesus took in the garden of Gethsemane where He had to sacrifice everything. The greatest possible sacrifice in Joseph’s mind was to be labeled a coward by his people. We have to realize he was acknowledged as great hero throughout his entire life and to be seen as a great coward was something that he just could not handle. So rather than obey the revelation he went back to die to avoid being called a coward.

If he would have lived then the temple would have been built but there was no way for the Powers-That-Be could have predicted what his decision would be at that point. He had certain keys to building Zion that Brigham Young did not have. He had certain visions that the other brethren did not have; he had the knowledge and will that could have established Zion. So the temple was not built in that generation because the prophet that was supposed to build it was killed. He was killed because he disobeyed the revelation from God to go out west and begin the kingdom anew. If he would have went out west he would have created a kingdom that would have been quite a bit different than what Brigham Young created and then he would have went back with power and acquired the lands taken from them and built the temple within a generation.

Audience: What historical book can this be found in?

JJ: The revelation to go west was one of the biographies of him and I think it was the one by Donna Hill, “Joseph Smith, the first Mormon.”

Audience: It was also in Michael Quinn’s book, “Origins of Power.”

JJ: Esoteric writings call our great teachers white magicians and they are in danger of being drowned by the waters. The waters are emotion and this causes problems many times. When Joseph said that his life is worth nothing to him if it is worth nothing to his friends, the waters of emotion drowned him. When the great test comes to the disciple, the test which is sometimes called the test of Abraham, or the test of the crucifixion, he has to be ready to sacrifice everything that he holds dear and let everything go. This is beyond a seeker’s comprehension what this will be. But in order to create a great work that will remain a person has to pass this test and Joseph Smith did not quite pass it. Because he did not pass it the temple was never built and the church was not put on the secure foundation that it needed to be and it turned out to be a regular church today and is not much different than other Christian churches of today if you take out several of the doctrines.


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