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1 Kings 17


USU78

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The subject of inquiry is the poor widow visited by Elijah:

And the word of the Lord came unto him, saying, "Arise, get thee to Zarephath, which belongeth to Zidon, and dwell there: behold, I have commanded a awidow woman there to sustain thee."

So he arose and went to Zarephath. And when he came to the gate of the city, behold, the widow woman was there gathering of sticks: and he called to her, and said, "Fetch me, I pray thee, a little water in a vessel, that I may drink."

And as she was going to fetch it, he called to her, and said, "Bring me, I pray thee, a morsel of bread in thine hand."

And she said, "As the Lord thy God liveth, I have not a cake, but an handful of meal in a barrel, and a little oil in a cruse: and, behold, I am gathering two sticks, that I may go in and dress it for me and my son, that we may eat it, and die."

And Elijah said unto her, "Fear not; go and do as thou hast said: but make me thereof a little cake first, and bring it unto me, and after make for thee and for thy son. For thus saith the Lord God of Israel, 'The barrel of meal shall not waste, neither shall the cruse of oil fail, until the day that the Lord sendeth rain upon the earth.'"

And she went and did according to the saying of Elijah: and she, and he, and her house, did eat many days. And the barrel of meal wasted not, neither did the cruse of oil fail, according to the word of the Lord, which he spake by Elijah.

The question arises, which the text does not appear to address, whether the oil cruse and flour crock refilled each night "of themselves," or whether G-d so inspired the hearts of the woman's neighbors, that they made sure she and her son survived the terrible famine then visiting Israel. I remember, when one of my kids asked me the question years ago, whether it "really happened" that the oil and flour were miraculously replenished or whether people helped her . . . and I answered, "Which is the greater miracle, that G-d would miraculously do this, or whether He could change the hearts of desperate people that it became unthinkable that they should let a poor neighbor starve?"

The silly argument in the thread about Red Sea vs. Reed Sea made me think of this.

What say'ee, fellow MadBoardians?

USU "Notice the verse, underlined above, that Nephi was probably paraphrasing?" 78

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I heard once, and I wish I could find the reference, that Brigham Young taught that this was an example of an eternal principle. That if you are willing to give your last morsel to another, then you are entitled to miraculous intervention on your behalf.

Or something like that.

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Well IF (and that is a very very big if) I was in charge of this universe, and

IF my objective was to "teach my kids" to love one another and

IF I wanted them to be "my hands" so that they learned how to do this, and

IF I leaned toward doing miracles most usually through the simplest means available, and

IF I wanted "my kids" to learn what the Holy Spirit was so that I could more effectively communicate with them,

I would definitely inspire somebody to sneak over there with flour and oil.

I could just do it by miracle, but what would that teach anyone? This way, I get to make it "look" miraculous, which it is anyway, so it gets into what eventually becomes "The Bible" AND I get to teach who knows how many people all of the above principles.

It's hard to see the downside in all that!

But what do I know?

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Modesty is a virtue he doesn't have to work much on acquiring.

Uh huh. Just ask my wife. She might have a different opinion.

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The question arises, which the text does not appear to address, whether the oil cruse and flour crock refilled each night "of themselves," or whether G-d so inspired the hearts of the woman's neighbors, that they made sure she and her son survived the terrible famine then visiting Israel.

The same question could be asked reguarding

38 He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? go and see. And when they knew, they say, Five, and two fishes.

39 And he commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass.

40 And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties.

41 And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.

42 And they did all eat, and were filled.

(New Testament | Mark 6:38 - 42)

Perhaps people were unwilling to share in a large group - but when they were broken up into smaller groups, they were more willing to share? I think it was probably half/half. God lets us do as much as we can, and then He fills in the rest.

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And where modesty is concerned, I hope he acquired a lot of it. :P

I DO wear clothes now on a regular basis.

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Perhaps people were unwilling to share in a large group - but when they were broken up into smaller groups, they were more willing to share? I think it was probably half/half. God lets us do as much as we can, and then He fills in the rest.

And THAT is the real miracle!

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Well IF (and that is a very very big if) I was in charge of this universe, and

IF my objective was to "teach my kids" to love one another and

IF I wanted them to be "my hands" so that they learned how to do this, and

IF I leaned toward doing miracles most usually through the simplest means available, and

IF I wanted "my kids" to learn what the Holy Spirit was so that I could more effectively communicate with them,

I would definitely inspire somebody to sneak over there with flour and oil.

I could just do it by miracle, but what would that teach anyone? This way, I get to make it "look" miraculous, which it is anyway, so it gets into what eventually becomes "The Bible" AND I get to teach who knows how many people all of the above principles.

It's hard to see the downside in all that!

But what do I know?

The same question could be asked reguarding

38 He saith unto them, How many loaves have ye? go and see. And when they knew, they say, Five, and two fishes.

39 And he commanded them to make all sit down by companies upon the green grass.

40 And they sat down in ranks, by hundreds, and by fifties.

41 And when he had taken the five loaves and the two fishes, he looked up to heaven, and blessed, and brake the loaves, and gave them to his disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.

42 And they did all eat, and were filled.

(New Testament | Mark 6:38 - 42)

Perhaps people were unwilling to share in a large group - but when they were broken up into smaller groups, they were more willing to share? I think it was probably half/half. God lets us do as much as we can, and then He fills in the rest.

Hold it right there! So you are saying that God would rather work through small and simple things to bring great things to pass so He can help His children grow and learn to serve one another; AT THE PRICE of looking really cool in just doing it all by Himself?!

I'm afraid you are both on a slippery slope.

I bet the next thing you are going to say is that God is actually a man like us but glorified beyond our current mortal state, and that by doing His will we could actually become like Him.

I'll be watching you two :P .

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I'll be watching you two :P .

That's ok, speaking for myself of course. I'm fully dressed and plan to stay that way, and trust me, that's the way you want it. I didn't realize this was a two-way monitor.

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I've never even considered anything other than the miraculous replenishing of the barrel and cruse, perhaps because that's so often how it seems to work for me.

True story:

I planned to buy fuel for my car on Saturday in order to have plenty for the Sabbath, but it didn't happen. After the prieshtood session of General Conference, members of our ward went to the nearby McDonald's for ice cream sundaes. Then one of the Young Men with me asked if we could go down to the river for a swim. I told him yes and asked if the other boy in my car wanted to go with. He moved here only a couple of months ago, he hadn't been active where he came from at all, and he's only been marginally active here, to be honest. In addition, he's kind of lurked on the fringe socially, so I totally expected him to say no to an impromptu and very much ice-cold dip in a muddy river, but he said yes, so off we headed. Just as we were about to jump into the frigid water, our bishop and a new member of the YM presidency (who had overheard our plans) showed up to join us. Because there were now five of us, what might have been a short swim turned into a rather lengthy and epic battle over who could win control of a glowstick, with plenty of flying tackles and a few near drownings.

It was all worth it because, on our way back from the river, marginally active YM asked if I could start regularly picking him up for church on Sundays! At the same time, it meant that it was after midnight when we got back to 'civilisation,' and all the service stations were closed. Oh well. I still had 150km left, I estimated, and figured that would be enough for Sunday.

It wasn't. As so often happens, trying to fulfil my calling resulted in a few more trips than I'd planned on, and my engine stalled a good 20 metres from my house late Sunday afternoon. I was able to coast down the road, down the drive, and into the garage, but just barely. I thanked God for getting me home and planned to have a housemate help me get a jerrycan of fuel on Monday. We both forgot. Fast forward to yesterday morning, and another of my YM rings me up, desperate for a lift because he was in trouble with his parents. I told him I'd be there in 10 minutes. And then I remembered that I had no fuel.

I quickly dropped to my knees, quickly explained the situation to Heavenly Father, asked for some help, and went out to the garage. Several times I attempted to start the car, but absolutely nothng happened. The fuel tank was bone dry. Again, I closed my eyes, said I knew that God could get my car started, and tried again. It started right up. I backed up our long drive, half expecting the engine to sputter and die again. It didn't. I then drove the five km to the nearest servo, half of it up a series of steep hills, without any trouble. I got the fuel I needed and met the waiting Young Man.

I will agree, though: If our idiot neighbour--the same one who backed into one of my housemates' cars and then denied it despite leaving his distinctive paint all over the dent--were inspired to generously sneak fuel into my car, that would by far be the greater miracle!

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That's ok, speaking for myself of course. I'm fully dressed and plan to stay that way, and trust me, that's the way you want it. I didn't realize this was a two-way monitor.

:P

I just can't top you on this MFB. As always, well played.

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