Friday, December 30, 2016

Malachi 3, part 2

Malachi 3:2-3

2 But who may abide the day of his coming? and who shall stand when he appeareth? for he is like a refiner’s fire, and like fullers’ soap:
 3 And he shall sit as a refiner and purifier of silver: and he shall purify the sons of Levi, and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness.

This scripture refers to Christ’s second coming.  This verse tells us that when Christ appears He shall be like a refiner’s fire and like fuller’s soap; the refiner (Christ) will use fire to burn off the dross and purify the precious metal (His children). Similarly the fuller (Christ) will use soap to clean the wool and remove the impurities so that what is left is pure.  During the second coming of Christ all that do wickedly shall be burned as stubble.[1]  Who in the modern churches is Christ referring to when he states that he will “purify the sons of Levi”?  If this is referring to the purification of all church leaders in all denominations who claim to have a portion of Christ’s priesthood, how will the purification look and why does it need to be done?  Can it be possible that church leaders of various and sundry denominations have strayed from the ordinances of God and polluted His holy church thereby requiring purification and purging so that an acceptable offering done in righteousness can be performed?[2]

Malachi 3:4-5

 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.
 5 And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers[3], and against the adulterers[4], and against false swearers[5], and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right[6], and fear not me, saith the Lord of hosts.

Christ alone will be the judge of all mankind.  Christ is the keeper of the gate[7]; no man entereth into His Father’s kingdom but by Him![8]  He alone will judge us.  He will be swift in his witness against those who have done evil in His sight of which they have not repented.  He alone knows the desires of our hearts. “And the King shall answer and say unto them, verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”[9]  This list of behaviors for which we will be judged bears deep consideration.[10]

[1] Matthew 3:12; 13:30; Luke 3:17; JST Matthew 3:39 (KJV)
[2] Isaiah 24: 5-6  The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinance, broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left.
Doctrine and Covenants 13: 1 Upon you my fellow servants, in the name of Messiah I confer the Priesthood of Aaron, which holds the keys of the ministering of angels, and of the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; and this shall never be taken again from the earth, until the sons of Levi do offer again an offering unto the Lord in righteousness.
Burton, Alma P Discourses of the Prophet Joseph Smith 1977 “ These sacrifices, as well as every ordinance belonging to the Priesthood, will, when the Temple of the Lord shall be built, and the sons of Levi be purified, be fully restored and attended to in all their powers, ramifications, and blessings. This ever did and ever will exist when the powers of the Melchizedek Priesthood are sufficiently manifest; else how can the restitution of all things spoken of by the Holy Prophets be brought to pass. It is not to be understood that the law of Moses will be established again with all its rites and variety of ceremonies; this has never been spoken of by the prophets; but those things which existed prior to Moses’ day, namely, sacrifice, will be continued.”
[3] Blank, Wayne “What is Sorcery?”, 2012
The word "sorcery" originated from the Latin word, sortiarius, which meant one who sorts, as in casts lots with the assistance of evil spirits. The King James Version uses "sorcery," "sorcerer," or "sorceress" to translate a number of Hebrew and Greek words, some of which apply as much to pseudo-sciences (e.g. astrology, alchemy) as other heathen religions. The Hebrew word, pronounced kaw-shawf, means to whisper, or to enchant (to "cast a spell over someone or something; to put a hex on someone or something"), the Hebrew word, pronounced kawsh-shawf, or kheh-shef means a magician or magic, the Hebrew word, pronounced awn-nawn, means to cover, or to cloud over, as in to behave in a hidden manner i.e. occult, from which the word cult originated, the Greek word pronounced far-mak-yoos, means to drug; the present-day respectable words pharmacy and pharmacist originated from that Greek word, which originally referred to people who used drugs or narcotics to poison or control people
[4] Jesus extended the definition of adultery to include sexual relations between a married man and a woman other than his wife (Mark 10:11-12, Luke 16:18). Other New Testament teachings also understand it that way (1 Corinthians 6:15-16, 1 Corinthians 7:2 ). Jesus enlarged the concept when he taught, “whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” Matthew 5:28 (KJV)
[5] Willfully and knowingly giving a false statement; this may also refer to taking the name of the Lord in vain which, in part, means to claim to speak for God when He has given you no such errand
[6] This condemnation is to ANYONE, church leader or lay member who “fares sumptuously” while poor Lazarus starves (Luke 16:19-31, KJV); taking advantage of another in any way in order to obtain more for themselves; any church or church leader who oppresses the poor through the collection of tithes; Alma taught that those who have not (the poor) do not need to give but instead that they should be given (Mosiah 18:27)
[7] 2 Nephi 9:41 O then, my beloved brethren, come unto the Lord, the Holy One. Remember that his paths are righteous. Behold, the way for man is narrow, but it lieth in a straight course before him, and the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel; and he employeth no servant there; and there is none other way save it be by the gate; for he cannot be deceived, for the Lord God is his name.
[8] John 14: 6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (KJV)
[9] Matthew 25:41 (Holy Scriptures, Inspired Version)
[10] Doctrine and Covenants 76:98-106 includes a part of this list in the definition of who will inherit a telestial kingdom