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Maidservant

Deliverance (1 Nephi 1:20)

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I love the Book of Mormon.  I am going to be doing some very specific studying and writing regarding it in the coming days, weeks, and months.

I have to say that 1 Nephi Chapter 1 has to be one of my favorites.  The following something I wrote recently and I want to share.  I would be glad if anyone wanted to add their insight and riff off any of the ideas I bring out or that you see in verse 20 or that you know or have learned about deliverance.  I am particularly interested in expanding my understanding of how those in the Lehi-Nephi milieu and time frame (Israelite) would be understanding deliverance.

I also would like to understand the term 'LORD' better.  I am doing my own study, but anything anyone has to contribute, would love to hear that.

By the way, when I read the scriptures (not just the Book of Mormon), I try very hard to leave my preconceived stuff at the door and engage with what it really says (or what I get out of it for myself); maybe as if I was an alien from another planet reading it for the first time (not that stark, but something like it).

Most people in engaging the Book of Mormon ask themselves: was Nephi real? and then reject the Book of Mormon if they cannot answer in the affirmative.  I ask myself things such as: is deliverance real? And I love delving into the picture of that the Book of Mormon yields, and I find myself unable to reject such an exquisite principle and I am glad of any book I would find that story told. (It matters less to me what the archetype story is that brings that forth.)

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I . . . will show unto you . . . the power of deliverance.” (1 Ne 1:20)

This is how the boy-record keeper-servant of God-High Priest-king (even when he didn't want to be)-descendant of Joseph-through-Manasseh completed his prologue, poised to begin accounting regarding the most formative/transformative experience, or set of experiences, of his life. Deliverance is the theme under which he very deliberately chose to gather and describe his insight.

I noticed this promise many years ago . . . that Nephi intended to unfold the principle(s) of deliverance. He didn't say: 'I'll show you how to get to heaven.' He didn't say: 'I'll show you how to have eternal families.' He didn't say: 'I'll show you how to be good.' He doesn't even seem like he is talking about 'the atonement' at least in the way I have been in the habit of conceiving it.

Whatever power, principle, or person/being Nephi refers to, which Joseph Smith translated as 'the LORD', Nephi says 'I will show you how [this person, principle, or power] causes deliverance.' We'll never know what syllable, what NAME, Nephi gave this Cause of Deliverance, what sound came across Nephi's lips; we can only know that he likely never said the syllable 'LORD'.

I find it fascinating and beautiful: deliverance.

First of all, this matches up very well with the message of the Old Testament (Nephi's time frame would match up with portions of the Old Testament and a heritage of the Torah). The stories of the Old Testament are not about heaven or reward or even atonement. They aren't about a future after you die. They are about living in a hard world and being protected and delivered right now. Daniel from the lions, David from Goliath, the Bene Israel (children of Israel) from Egypt, Esther and her people from Xerxes and Haman. Delivered. So Nephi's stories are in that genre.

I do find it of interest that the name “Joshua” or “Yeshua” (which is the name/syllable sound of the Jew from Galilee that has become 2000 years worth of famous and whom is often called Savior) means 'deliverance' or 'YHWH delivers'. Thus causing ourselves to ask who or what YHWH is (which we cannot now answer in this paragraph). But perhaps it is this 'YHWH' principle or being that Nephi speaks of, that is obscured by the choice of the term 'LORD'. And does Nephi's use of the term 'deliverance' point to the Galilean? Or does the name and person of the Galilean point to the deeper 'Deliverance' so that we could have another example of it? (Or both?)

I find it fascinating and beautiful. Who doesn't want the relief of being rescued?

Of course the question then becomes: rescued from what, to what? How much deliverance? When delivered? What does it look like? What does it feel like?

And Nephi is going to answer these questions, not with prose and bullet points, but by unfolding a story in poetry and a specific structure [the structure of deliverance, as well as the 'learning of the Jews' which I will come back to that]; and the characters of that story. The question cannot be answered in a word (or can it? YHWH?); it has to be revealed, layer by layer, element by element, in a deep and timeless template. A template that (I say) is in multiple versions in what we now call the Old Testament; is in the Joshua story (Jesus); is in the Book of Mormon in multiple versions; and is in the Joseph Smith and his latter-day saints story; it is in the story of the Church of our time. In fact, this template continues in the Qu'ran; it began in the Vedas. There is really only one story.

But the story cannot remain outside of us. It cannot be only the story of Nephi, or the story of the Galilean. It has to become the story of you; of me, of us. And it has to become not a story.

It is the actual real time deliverance of you.

This story is simply the map of it.

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Very insightful , thanks for sharing Maidservant!  It is a theme that I am passionate about and might share more later.

Now, how do I get the dueling banjos soundtrack to stop playing in my head?

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One thing I like is that Nephi wrote these plates late in life after he had his apocalypse vision but he begins at a more introductory level, closer to where he and his father were at this time. He talks about Lehi preaching about the messiah even though he knew much more about the Savior. His description of his father’s vision is given without commentary even though he could have provided plenty of it and in many ways does later on. He starts with the basics and works his way up to teach the reader.

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7 minutes ago, pogi said:

Very insightful , thanks for sharing Maidservant!  It is a theme that I am passionate about and might share more later.

Now, how do I get the dueling banjos soundtrack to stop playing in my head?

Thank you.  I'm glad to know I'm not the only one 'into' deliverance.  We don't often hear that word, per se, across the pulpit.  But it is Nephi's ground theme, it seems.

Um . . . dueling banjos . . . ? lol

4 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

One thing I like is that Nephi wrote these plates late in life after he had his apocalypse vision but he begins at a more introductory level, closer to where he and his father were at this time. He talks about Lehi preaching about the messiah even though he knew much more about the Savior. His description of his father’s vision is given without commentary even though he could have provided plenty of it and in many ways does later on. He starts with the basics and works his way up to teach the reader.

Yes, you are right, I always like to keep in mind that Nephi is writing all this much later in his life with much time to have thought about it and exactly what he wanted to say.  And I hadn't noticed that specific idea of starting with the primer!  That's great!  I'm going to try that lens on as I continue to delve into the chapter and the book as a whole.

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17 minutes ago, Maidservant said:

Um . . . dueling banjos . . . ? lol

It’s probably better that you don’t know.

All I can say is that if you hear this playing in the woods...RUN!

https://youtu.be/gsC4kf6x_Q0

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A map or template is right:  Already in 1 Nephi 1:1-3 he gives us the brief Plan of Salvation template:  Creation (born of goodly parents), Fall (many afflictions), Atonement (highly favored of the Lord), and Veil (goodness and the mysteries of God); J. Spencer, An Other Testament, 42; N. Rappleye, “Nephi the Good: A Commentary on 1 Nephi 1:1-3,” MormonInterpreter Blog, Jan 3, 2014, online at  http://www.mormoninterpreter.com/nephi-the-good-a-commentary-on-1-nephi-11-3/#more-4490 .

Then he fleshes it out and goes into detail throughout the rest of his two books:  (1) Foundation-Creation I Ne 1 - 18, (2) Division-Fall I Ne 19 - II Ne 5, (3) Redemption-Atonement II Ne 6 - 30, and (4) Conclusion-Veil II Ne 31-33; J. Spencer, An Other Testament, 42-63, with strong Israelite temple motifs.

Aside from all that, 1 Nephi follows an Exodus motif throughout, and there is even a Passover recitation (deliverance & redemption) at 1 Ne 17:23-42 Gale Boyd, “When a Jew Reads the Book of Mormon,” lds.net, Feb 28, 2016, online at http://lds.net/blog/faith/jew-reads-book-mormon/ .

As to KJV LORD (capitalized when translating the Hebrew Tetragrammaton YHWH), who knows what Nephi actually said.  Cf. Hebrew text of Isaiah 12:2 Yāh Yāhwē (YH YHWH) “LORD JEHOVAH”  (2 Ne 22:2) – part of the originally longer Hebrew text which matches the LXX Greek “Look, he is the God (ho Theos) of my salvation: I shall have faith and not be afraid, for Yahweh (Kyrios) is my strength and my song, he has been my salvation.”  When Nephi was engraving his plates years later, he likely used the simple Egyptian word nb "lord."  V30 .

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15 minutes ago, pogi said:

It’s probably better that you don’t know.

All I can say is that if you hear this playing in the woods...RUN!

https://youtu.be/gsC4kf6x_Q0

Ahhhhh . . . yea, my education has holes; I've heard of the movie (of course); but have never seen it.

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4 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

A map or template is right:  Already in 1 Nephi 1:1-3 he gives us the brief Plan of Salvation template:  Creation (born of goodly parents), Fall (many afflictions), Atonement (highly favored of the Lord), and Veil (goodness and the mysteries of God); J. Spencer, An Other Testament, 42; N. Rappleye, “Nephi the Good: A Commentary on 1 Nephi 1:1-3,” MormonInterpreter Blog, Jan 3, 2014, online at  http://www.mormoninterpreter.com/nephi-the-good-a-commentary-on-1-nephi-11-3/#more-4490 .

Oh, you're right! I didn't see that!

4 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

Then he fleshes it out and goes into detail throughout the rest of his two books:  (1) Foundation-Creation I Ne 1 - 18, (2) Division-Fall I Ne 19 - II Ne 5, (3) Redemption-Atonement II Ne 6 - 30, and (4) Conclusion-Veil II Ne 31-33; J. Spencer, An Other Testament, 42-63, with strong Israelite temple motifs.

Aside from all that, 1 Nephi follows an Exodus motif throughout, and there is even a Passover recitation (deliverance & redemption) at 1 Ne 17:23-42 Gale Boyd, “When a Jew Reads the Book of Mormon,” lds.net, Feb 28, 2016, online at http://lds.net/blog/faith/jew-reads-book-mormon/ .

Yes, indeed.  I will probably write more about the Exodus theme.  Also another theme I love.

4 minutes ago, Robert F. Smith said:

As to KJV LORD (capitalized when translating the Hebrew Tetragrammaton YHWH), who knows what Nephi actually said.  Cf. Hebrew text of Isaiah 12:2 Yāh Yāhwē (YH YHWH) “LORD JEHOVAH”  (2 Ne 22:2) – part of the originally longer Hebrew text which matches the LXX Greek “Look, he is the God (ho Theos) of my salvation: I shall have faith and not be afraid, for Yahweh (Kyrios) is my strength and my song, he has been my salvation.”  When Nephi was engraving his plates years later, he likely used the simple Egyptian word nb "lord."  V30 .

Ok.  Yes, he was using Egyptian.

Thanks, Robert, I'll read all those articles.

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On 7/9/2019 at 11:17 AM, Maidservant said:

I have to say that 1 Nephi Chapter 1 has to be one of my favorites

According to 1 Nephi 1:18, what were some of the marvelous things concerning the destruction of Jerusalem
that Lehi saw?

Thanks,
Jim

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2 hours ago, theplains said:

According to 1 Nephi 1:18, what were some of the marvelous things concerning the destruction of Jerusalem
that Lehi saw?

Thanks,
Jim

That's a good question.  I haven't written about that one yet.  But I probably will post some more stuff from time to time about chapter 1.  I have more written but I don't want to mob the board with it.  But that one I haven't even pondered before.  Do you have any ideas?

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On 7/14/2019 at 12:17 AM, Maidservant said:

That's a good question.  I haven't written about that one yet.  But I probably will post some more stuff from time to time about chapter 1.  I have more written but I don't want to mob the board with it.  But that one I haven't even pondered before.  Do you have any ideas?

I couldn't find anything in the Book of Mormon but Jeremiah chapter 24 has some comforting words
in the parable of the good and evil figs.

Thanks,
Jim

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