The House of Israel: The Mormon and Jewish People
“There are no people in the world who understand the Jews like the Mormons.”
– Prime Minister David Ben Gurion
No other people, organization, or religion, has as much in common with the Jewish people, as do the Mormons.
You have been driven, robbed, and ravished – so have we. You have been persecuted mistreated and misunderstood – so have we. Why? We were driven from our homes to desolation beyond the boundaries of the United States. You too have been driven. Why? there may be other reasons, but it can scarcely be denied that conflicting religious opinions have played a major role in such unfortunate and related experiences.
There is possibly no other question upon which the children of G-d are as seriously divided, as upon religious matters. Some of the greatest recorded persecutions have been instigated by religious leaders of men. This is very displeasing to G-d. what a power we could be in the world if we were united.
The Jewish People will find our message most fascinating. the complete accomplishment of our mutual and heaven-assigned responsibilities involves us becoming united, (As the descendants of Joseph) with the descendants of Judah, (The Jewish people) in the fulfillment of the promises given to Abraham and renewed with Isaac and Jacob, that through them, and their seed, all nations of the earth would be blessed.
Therefore Judah, we as descendants of Joseph, a part of the family of Israel, invite you to consider with us some very important matters which affect both of us and our future as promised by the Lord and proclaimed by the holy Prophets.
Today the descendants of Judah, who still practice the religion and traditions of Judaism, are often assumed to be the only remaining Israelites. But if we look at the biblical history, and the fate of all twelve tribes we see that ultimately the descendants of Jacob were divided into two kingdoms: The kingdom of Judah, and the kingdom of Israel under the half tribes of Joseph: Ephraim and Manasseh.
The Lord inspired the Prophet Ahijah to predict the division of Israel into two kingdoms (Melachim 1 or I Kings,11:31-32) From the days of Jeroboam, to this day, these kingdoms have never been reunited although the Prophets have foretold their ultimate reunion. Together they embrace all the descendents of Jacob. Therefore in looking for the fulfillment of the promises of the Lord to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and their descendents we must look not only to Judah. We must realize that great were the promises of G-d to the other descendents of Israel under the leadership of the Ephraim and Manasseh, the two half tribes of Joseph. Of this fact all Jewish and Mormon people need to be made aware because neither without the other can accomplish what the Lord expects, and what He has foretold in the Torah.
The Blessings of the Sons of Israel
In order to understand what G-d has promised it is necessary to consider the promises and prophecies made by Israel to his sons. Specifically the two kingdoms of Israel were divided, one under the leadership of the tribe of Judah (The Jewish people) and one under the leadership of the tribe of Ephraim (The ancestors of the Mormon people.) The blessings of Jacob to these two tribes foretell the destiny of these two branches of the house of Israel. Let us look at the blessings our common father Jacob gave us in the Torah: ( Bereishit-Genesis 49)
||א. וַיִּקְרָא יַעֲקֹב אֶל בָּנָיו וַיֹּאמֶר הֵאָסְפוּ וְאַגִּידָה לָכֶם אֵת אֲשֶׁר יִקְרָא אֶתְכֶם בְּאַחֲרִית הַיָּמִים:|
||ח. יְהוּדָה אַתָּה יוֹדוּךָ אַחֶיךָ יָדְךָ בְּעֹרֶף אֹיְבֶיךָ יִשְׁתַּחֲווּ לְךָ בְּנֵי אָבִיךָ:|
||ט. גּוּר אַרְיֵה יְהוּדָה מִטֶּרֶף בְּנִי עָלִיתָ כָּרַע רָבַץ כְּאַרְיֵה וּכְלָבִיא מִי יְקִימֶנּוּ:|
|10. The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor the student of the law from between his feet, until Shiloh comes, and to him will be a gathering of peoples.||י. לֹא יָסוּר שֵׁבֶט מִיהוּדָה וּמְחֹקֵק מִבֵּין רַגְלָיו עַד כִּי יָבֹא שִׁילֹה וְלוֹ יִקְּהַת עַמִּים:|
|11. He binds his foal with one vine, and with a vine [he loads] his young donkey. [He launders] his garment with wine, and with the blood of grapes binds his raiment.||יא. אֹסְרִי לַגֶּפֶן עִירוֹ וְלַשּׂרֵקָה בְּנִי אֲתֹנוֹ כִּבֵּס בַּיַּיִן לְבֻשׁוֹ וּבְדַם עֲנָבִים סוּתוֹ:|
|12. [He is] red eyed from wine and white toothed from milk.||יב. חַכְלִילִי עֵינַיִם מִיָּיִן וּלְבֶן שִׁנַּיִם מֵחָלָב:|
|22. A charming son is Joseph, a son like a fruitful bough;[his] wives, strode over the wall [to see him.]||כב. בֵּן פֹּרָת יוֹסֵף בֵּן פֹּרָת עֲלֵי עָיִן בָּנוֹת צָעֲדָה עֲלֵי שׁוּר:|
|23. [His brothers] heaped bitterness upon him and became quarrelsome; yea, their archers despised him.||כג. וַיְמָרֲרֻהוּ וָרֹבּוּ וַיִּשְׂטְמֻהוּ בַּעֲלֵי חִצִּים:|
|24. But his bow was strongly established, and his arms were gilded [with power] from the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob. He sustained the rock of Israel.||כד. וַתֵּשֶׁב בְּאֵיתָן קַשְׁתּוֹ וַיָּפֹזּוּ זְרֹעֵי יָדָיו מִידֵי אֲבִיר יַעֲקֹב מִשָּׁם רֹעֶה אֶבֶן יִשְׂרָאֵל:|
|25. [Strengthened] even by the God of your father, He will help you, the Almighty, He will bless you [with] the blessings of the heavens above, the blessings of the deep, lying below, the blessings of fatherhood and motherhood. [Eternal posterity]||כה. מֵאֵל אָבִיךָ וְיַעְזְרֶךָּ וְאֵת שַׁדַּי וִיבָרֲכֶךָּ בִּרְכֹת שָׁמַיִם מֵעָל בִּרְכֹת תְּהוֹם רֹבֶצֶת תָּחַת בִּרְכֹת שָׁדַיִם וָרָחַם:|
|26. These blessings [to Joseph] of your father [Israel] surpassed [even] the blessings of my parents.[Abraham and Isaac] Unto the ends of the everlasting hills may they come to Joseph’s head and to the crown (of the head) of him [Joseph’s descendants] who are separated from his brothers.||כו. בִּרְכֹת אָבִיךָ גָּבְרוּ עַל בִּרְכֹת הוֹרַי עַד תַּאֲוַת גִּבְעֹת עוֹלָם תִּהְיֶיןָ לְרֹאשׁ יוֹסֵף וּלְקָדְקֹד נְזִיר אֶחָיו:|
Father Jacob’s blessings upon his sons were to tell them of what would befall their posterity in the future. It would appear that the blessings given to Judah contemplated the coming of the Messiah, who would gather the people for the last time in preparation for the messianic, or millennial, age.
Joseph’s blessing on the other hand indicates that his posterity would be very numerous and spread “unto the ends of the everlasting hills.” In this land they would be blessed even though they would become separated from their brethren. This means that they may not be recognized as descendents of Israel by the rest of the Jewish people. This prophecy is made even more clear by Moses who also prophesied: (Devarim-Deuteronomy 33)
||א. וְזֹאת הַבְּרָכָה אֲשֶׁר בֵּרַךְ משֶׁה אִישׁ הָאֱלֹהִים אֶת בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לִפְנֵי מוֹתוֹ: . . .|
|13. And of Joseph he said: “His land shall be blessed by the Lord, with the sweetness of the heavens with dew, and with the deep that lies below,||יג. וּלְיוֹסֵף אָמַר מְבֹרֶכֶת יְהֹוָה אַרְצוֹ מִמֶּגֶד שָׁמַיִם מִטָּל וּמִתְּהוֹם רֹבֶצֶת תָּחַת:|
|14. and with the sweetness of the produce of the sun, and with the sweetness of the moon’s yield,||יד. וּמִמֶּגֶד תְּבוּאֹת שָׁמֶשׁ וּמִמֶּגֶד גֶּרֶשׁ יְרָחִים:|
|15. and with the crops of early mountains, and with the sweetness of perennial hills,||טו. וּמֵרֹאשׁ הַרְרֵי קֶדֶם וּמִמֶּגֶד גִּבְעוֹת עוֹלָם:|
|16. and with the sweetness of the land and its fullness, and through the contentment of the One Who stood in the [burning] bush. May it come upon Joseph’s head and upon the crown of the one separated from his brothers.||טז. וּמִמֶּגֶד אֶרֶץ וּמְלֹאָהּ וּרְצוֹן שֹׁכְנִי סְנֶה תָּבוֹאתָה לְרֹאשׁ יוֹסֵף וּלְקָדְקֹד נְזִיר אֶחָיו:|
|17. To his firstborn ox is [given] glory. His horns are the horns of a re’em. With them, he will gore peoples together [throughout all] the ends of the earth these are the myriads of Ephraim, and these are the thousands of Manasseh.”||יז. בְּכוֹר שׁוֹרוֹ הָדָר לוֹ וְקַרְנֵי רְאֵם קַרְנָיו בָּהֶם עַמִּים יְנַגַּח יַחְדָּו אַפְסֵי אָרֶץ וְהֵם רִבְבוֹת אֶפְרַיִם וְהֵם אַלְפֵי מְנַשֶּׁה:|
Moses’ description of the land into which Joseph would be separated is most impressive. Moses also goes further and foretells that the Lord will gather the descendents of Joseph from the ends of the earth. He also indicates that the posterity of this branch of the house of Israel was to be large in number. He says there shall be “myriads” of the tribe of Ephraim.
If the only members of the house of Israel today were Jewish, where are these “Myriads of Ephraim”? Many are lost among the gentiles and in false gentile religions, but the Lord G-d has promised to bring them back from the ends of the earth and to join them again with Judah. This is happening now.
Both the tribes of Judah and Joseph were “scattered”
|27. And the Lord said, “I will remove Judah too from before Me as I have removed Israel and I will reject this city, which I have chosen- Jerusalem-and the Temple concerning which I said, ‘My Name shall be there.’ “||כז. וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה גַּם אֶת יְהוּדָה אָסִיר מֵעַל פָּנַי כַּאֲשֶׁר הֲסִרֹתִי אֶת יִשְׂרָאֵל וּמָאַסְתִּי אֶת הָעִיר הַזֹּאת אֲשֶׁר בָּחַרְתִּי אֶת יְרוּשָׁלַםִ וְאֶת הַבַּיִת אֲשֶׁר אָמַרְתִּי יִהְיֶה שְׁמִי שָׁם:|
Because Israel was going to be divided into two kingdoms and then both kingdoms were to be scattered among the gentile nations, the Lord made provision that two records should be kept: one by Judah, and one by Joseph. This was foretold by Yechezkel, or Ezekiel, the prophet. The Lord further promised that these two parts of Israel and their records would one day become one.
|15. And the word of the Lord came to me, saying:||טו. וַיְהִי דְבַר יְהֹוָה אֵלַי לֵאמֹר:|
|16. And you, son of man, take for yourself one stick [or scroll] and write upon it, ‘For Judah and for the children of Israel his companions’; and take one stick and write upon it, ‘For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim and all the house of Israel, his companions.’||טז. וְאַתָּה בֶן אָדָם קַח לְךָ עֵץ אֶחָד וּכְתֹב עָלָיו לִיהוּדָה וְלִבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל חֲבֵרָיו וּלְקַח עֵץ אֶחָד וּכְתוֹב עָלָיו לְיוֹסֵף עֵץ אֶפְרַיִם וְכָל בֵּית יִשְׂרָאֵל חֲבֵרָיו:|
|17. And bring them close, one to the other into one stick, and they shall be one in your hand.||יז. וְקָרַב אֹתָם אֶחָד אֶל אֶחָד לְךָ לְעֵץ אֶחָד וְהָיוּ לַאֲחָדִים בְּיָדֶךָ:|
|18. And when the children of your people say to you, saying, ‘Will you not tell us what these are to you?’||יח. וְכַאֲשֶׁר יֹאמְרוּ אֵלֶיךָ בְּנֵי עַמְּךָ לֵאמֹר הֲלוֹא תַגִּיד לָנוּ מָה אֵלֶּה לָּךְ:|
|19. Say to them, So says the Lord God: Behold I will take the stick [or scroll] of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim and the tribes of Israel his companions, and I will place them with him with the stick of Judah, [The Tanakh] and I will make them into one stick, and they shall become one in My hand.||יט. דַּבֵּר אֲלֵהֶם כֹּה אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יֱהֹוִה הִנֵּה אֲנִי לֹקֵחַ אֶת עֵץ יוֹסֵף אֲשֶׁר בְּיַד אֶפְרַיִם וְשִׁבְטֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל חֲבֵרָיו וְנָתַתִּי אוֹתָם עָלָיו אֶת עֵץ יְהוּדָה וַעֲשִׂיתִם לְעֵץ אֶחָד וְהָיוּ אֶחָד בְּיָדִי:|
|20. And the sticks upon which you shall write shall be in your hand before their eyes.||כ. וְהָיוּ הָעֵצִים אֲשֶׁר תִּכְתֹּב עֲלֵיהֶם בְּיָדְךָ לְעֵינֵיהֶם:|
|21. And say to them, So says the Lord God: Behold I will take the children of Israel from among the nations where they have gone, and I will gather them from every side, and I will bring them to their land.||כא. וְדַבֵּר אֲלֵיהֶם כֹּה אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יֱהֹוִה הִנֵּה אֲנִי לֹקֵחַ אֶת בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל מִבֵּין הַגּוֹיִם אֲשֶׁר הָלְכוּ שָׁם וְקִבַּצְתִּי אֹתָם מִסָּבִיב וְהֵבֵאתִי אוֹתָם אֶל אַדְמָתָם:|
|22. And I will make them into one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel, and one king shall be to them all as a king; and they shall no longer be two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms anymore.||כב. וְעָשִׂיתִי אֹתָם לְגוֹי אֶחָד בָּאָרֶץ בְּהָרֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וּמֶלֶךְ אֶחָד יִהְיֶה לְכֻלָּם לְמֶלֶךְ וְלֹא יִהְיוּ עוֹד לִשְׁנֵי גוֹיִם וְלֹא יֵחָצוּ עוֹד לִשְׁתֵּי מַמְלָכוֹת עוֹד:|
|23. And they shall no longer defile themselves with their idols, with their detestable things, or with all their transgressions, and I will save them from all their habitations in which they have sinned, and I will purify them, and they shall be to Me for a people, and I will be to them for a God.||כג. וְלֹא יִטַמְּאוּ עוֹד בְּגִלּוּלֵיהֶם וּבְשִׁקּוּצֵיהֶם וּבְכֹל פִּשְׁעֵיהֶם וְהוֹשַׁעְתִּי אֹתָם מִכֹּל מוֹשְׁבֹתֵיהֶם אֲשֶׁר חָטְאוּ בָהֶם וְטִהַרְתִּי אוֹתָם וְהָיוּ לִי לְעָם וַאֲנִי אֶהְיֶה לָהֶם לֵאלֹהִים:|
The Tanakh – The Hebrew Bible- contains no record of the tribes of Joseph after 3041. (721 B.C.E.) Where then is the record of the fulfillment of the promises of the Lord to them?
The prophecy that two records would be kept was fulfilled. Part of the message of the tribe of Joseph to Judah is that this record has been brought forth. This new record is known as The Book of Mormon, thus called because Mormon is the name of the ancient prophet who complied it. It contains records kept by the descendents of Joseph since they left the land of Israel, and covers a period of approximately a thousand years.
From this record we learn that the good land promised to Joseph and all Israel by Jacob and Moses was America. We learn that this land will be a gathering place for the seed of Joseph. We learn also that the Jewish people will be gathered in our time back to the Holy land and rebuild the city of Jerusalem. All of these prophecies were made in plain language long before any of these events took place. Now Israel as a nation is a fact.
A Marvelous Work and A Wonder
The bringing forth of The Book of Mormon, and the fulfillment of the prophecies contained in it, are such important events that Isaiah also prophesied of these things. (Isaiah 29:13-14)
|13. And the Lord said: “Because this people has come near; with their mouth and with their lips they honor Me, but their heart they draw far away from Me, and their fear of Me has become a command of people, which has been taught. [tradition]||יג. וַיֹּאמֶר אֲדֹנָי יַעַן כִּי נִגַּשׁ הָעָם הַזֶּה בְּפִיו וּבִשְׂפָתָיו כִּבְּדוּנִי וְלִבּוֹ רִחַק מִמֶּנִּי וַתְּהִי יִרְאָתָם אֹתִי מִצְוַת אֲנָשִׁים מְלֻמָּדָה:|
|14. Therefore, I will proceed to do a marvelous work to this people, even a marvelous work and a wonder. The wisdom of the wise men shall be lost, and the understanding of the prudent shall be hidden.||יד. לָכֵן הִנְנִי יוֹסִף לְהַפְלִיא אֶת הָעָם הַזֶּה הַפְלֵא וָפֶלֶא וְאָבְדָה חָכְמַת חֲכָמָיו וּבִינַת נְבֹנָיו תִּסְתַּתָּר:|
This makes it clear that the Work of God will be greater than the wisdom and understanding of men. This work of God was to come at a time when the worship of God would be mere tradition for many. Such conditions prevail in the world today, and throughout Israel.
Here we must pause to clarify that it is not our intention to put an end to the traditions that have preserved the Jewish people during the long Diaspora, or to denigrate the heritage that has sustained Israel. We do not wish to take away your traditions or your Jewishness. Rather we hope only to give additional insight and perspective to these traditions.
Likewise we reject the condescending notion taught by the evangelical Christian churches calling themselves “Messianic Jews” who claim that by accepting Jesus as the Messiah you will become “complete”. We are complete members of Israel regardless of whether we think Jesus fulfilled the Prophecies of the Messiah or not. This should not be the divisive issue it is, so reminiscent of the violent forced conversions of darker ages. Let us instead remind them that Jesus was Jewish, and maybe he would rather convert them to his own faith, then see us leave his Jewish religion, for the gentile religion of Christianity.
Mormonism is accepted by neither Christians, nor Judaism, as a part of their religion. It is our belief that it is the restoration and continuation of the Judaism of Jesus, a reminder of the original and pure doctrines revealed by G-d to all his Holy Prophets since time began. Thus it is fully compatible with the Torah, and with the historical, Jewish, Jesus.
This is the “Marvelous Work,” and “Wonder” Isaiah Predicted above: That Joseph and Judah would be reunited. Not just by friendship of the people, which we hope will continue, but also by being restored to the Lands of Israel, and America, and also by being restored to the original and pure doctrines and understanding of the ancient patriarchs, and in resorting the record of Joseph with the Record of Judah. When viewed in this expansive way, the prophecies of the Tanakh point to a renewal of ancient Israel both physically, as well as spiritually, and intellectually. A renewal that reaches every aspect of life and faith. This will lead to the Kingdom of God on earth, and the messianic age foretold.
The Prophet Daniel foretold the rise and fall of the gentile kingdoms of the world, and the ultimate establishment of a kingdom of God in the latter-days, which would lead to the messianic age. (Daniel 2:28, 34-35, 43-44)
|28. there is a God in heaven Who reveals secrets, and He lets King Nebuchadnezzar know what will be at the end of days; that is your dream and the visions of your head on your bed.||כח. בְּרַם אִיתַי אֱלָהּ בִּשְׁמַיָּא גָּלֵא רָזִין וְהוֹדַע לְמַלְכָּא נְבוּכַדְנֶצַּר מָה דִּי לֶהֱוֵא בְּאַחֲרִית יוֹמַיָּא חֶלְמָךְ וְחֶזְוֵי רֵאשָׁךְ עַל מִשְׁכְּבָךְ דְּנָה הוּא:|
|34. You were watching until one stone was hewn without hands, and it struck the image on its feet of iron and clay and crumbled them.||לד. חָזֵה הֲוַיְתָ עַד דִּי הִתְגְּזֶרֶת אֶבֶן דִּי לָא בִידַיִן וּמְחָת לְצַלְמָא עַל רַגְלוֹהִי דִּי פַרְזְלָא וְחַסְפָּא וְהַדֶּקֶת הִמּוֹן:|
|35. Then the iron, the clay, the copper, the silver, and the gold crumbled together, and they were like chaff from the threshing floors of the summer, and the wind carried them off, and no place was found for them, and the stone that struck the image became a huge mountain and filled the entire earth.||לה. בֵּאדַיִן דָּקוּ כַחֲדָה פַּרְזְלָא חַסְפָּא נְחָשָׁא כַּסְפָּא וְדַהֲבָא וַהֲווֹ כְּעוּר מִן אִדְּרֵי קַיִט וּנְשָׂא הִמּוֹן רוּחָא וְכָל אֲתַר לָא הִשְׁתְּכַח לְהוֹן וְאַבְנָא| דִּי מְחָת לְצַלְמָא הֲוַת לְטוּר רַב וּמְלָאת כָּל אַרְעָא:|
|43. And what you saw, iron mixed with clay, [connotes] that they will mingle with the seed of gentiles, but they will not cleave one to the other, as iron does not mix with clay. [i.e. the people of the earth will be divided, just as Judah has long been divided from Joseph.]||מג. וְדִי חֲזַיְתָ פַּרְזְלָא מְעָרַב בַּחֲסַף טִינָא מִתְעָרְבִין לֶהֱוֹן בִּזְרַע אֲנָשָׁא וְלָא לֶהֱוֹן דָּבְקִין דְּנָה עִם דְּנָה הֵא כְדִי פַרְזְלָא לָא מִתְעָרַב עִם חַסְפָּא:|
|44. And in the days of these kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom forever, it will not be destroyed, and the kingdom will not be left to another people; it will crumble and destroy all these kingdoms, and it will stand forever.||מד. וּבְיוֹמֵיהוֹן דִּי מַלְכַיָּא אִנּוּן יְקִים אֱלָהּ שְׁמַיָּא מַלְכוּ דִּי לְעָלְמִין לָא תִתְחַבַּל וּמַלְכוּתָה לְעַם אָחֳרָן לָא תִשְׁתְּבִק תַּדִּק וְתָסֵף כָּל אִלֵּין מַלְכְּוָתָא וְהִיא תְּקוּם לְעָלְמַיָּא:|
The establishment of this messianic kingdom by God is the greatest event of the latter-days, or future time period, described by Daniel. It would start small but will eventually fill the whole earth. We live in these latter-days, the future foretold by Daniel.
It is my privilege and honor to announce to you that the God of heaven has begun to set up this kingdom on the earth according to His promise. God has accomplished this by raising up a prophet from the lineage of Joseph, a choice Seer Like unto Moses. We invite the decedents of Judah to share with us every gift and blessing of this Latter-Day Kingdom, and learn of this modern prophet of Israel.
This is a great promise for we read in Deuteronomy/ Devarim 34:10:
|10. And there was no other prophet who arose in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face,||י. וְלֹא קָם נָבִיא עוֹד בְּיִשְׂרָאֵל כְּמשֶׁה אֲשֶׁר יְדָעוֹ יְהֹוָה פָּנִים אֶל פָּנִים:|
The modern prophet, named Joseph Smith was one like Moses who also saw the Lord face to face. In the spring of 1820 the Lord spoke with Joseph Smith face to face and instructed him that the Latter-day Kingdom of God, and all the prophecies of the ancient prophets concerning the restoration of Israel were about to come to pass. Joseph Smith was subsequently visited by many heavenly messengers to instruct him and give him the necessary authority. This made it possible to revive the ancient priesthood, perform the ordinances of the ancient temple, and many other blessings. These are the things we want you to know about, and hope that you will share these blessings with us.
Along with many angels, and the revealing of the ancient record of the tribes of Joseph, the Book of Mormon, Joseph smith was also visited by the prophet Elijah. as foretold by Malachi:4:5-6 / 3:23-24
|23. Lo, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and awesome day of the Lord,||כג. הִנֵּה אָנֹכִי שֹׁלֵחַ לָכֶם אֵת אֵלִיָּה הַנָּבִיא לִפְנֵי בּוֹא יוֹם יְהֹוָה הַגָּדוֹל וְהַנּוֹרָא:|
|24. that he may turn the heart of the fathers back through the children, and the heart of the children back through their fathers-lest I come and smite the earth with utter destruction.||כד. וְהֵשִׁיב לֵב אָבוֹת עַל בָּנִים וְלֵב בָּנִים עַל אֲבוֹתָם פֶּן אָבוֹא וְהִכֵּיתִי אֶת הָאָרֶץ חֵרֶם:|
Because Elijah came on Passover/Pesach in 1836/5596, and taught the prophet the promises made to the fathers, we understand more of the purposes of the ancient Temple. Today we build Temples where holy ordinances are performed linking us to our ancestors. This means that ancient Israel and modern Israel are also being brought together. We perform these holy ceremonies not only for the living but also the dead, thus fulfilling the promise of Malachi that our hearts would be turned back to our fathers.
The passage also indicates that if it were not for Elijah coming to turn our hearts to our fathers, and our deceased fathers turning their hearts to us today, that the entire earth would be smitten with utter destruction. What an important event! Would you like to enter the temple and reach out to your own ancestors? we invite you to come and partake of these blessings with us.
One of the Angels who appeared to Joseph Smith is identified as Moroni, one of the ancient prophets in Israel who wrote the record known as the Book of Mormon. He quoted from the words of the prophet Isaiah a passage that pertains to the eventual reunification of Israel with Judah, or between the Jewish and Mormon people. Isaiah: 11:11-13:
|11. And it shall come to pass that on that day, the Lord shall continue to apply His hand a second time to acquire the rest of His people, that will remain from Assyria and from Egypt and from Pathros and from Cush and from Elam and from Sumeria and from Hamath and from the islands of the sea.||יא. וְהָיָה | בַּיּוֹם הַהוּא יוֹסִיף אֲדֹנָי | שֵׁנִית יָדוֹ לִקְנוֹת אֶת שְׁאָר עַמּוֹ אֲשֶׁר יִשָּׁאֵר מֵאַשּׁוּר וּמִמִּצְרַיִם וּמִפַּתְרוֹס וּמִכּוּשׁ וּמֵעֵילָם וּמִשִּׁנְעָר וּמֵחֲמָת וּמֵאִיֵּי הַיָּם:|
|12. And He shall raise a banner to the gentiles, and He shall gather the lost of Israel, and the scattered ones of Judah He shall gather from the four corners of the earth.||יב. וְנָשָֹא נֵס לַגּוֹיִם וְאָסַף נִדְחֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל וּנְפֻצוֹת יְהוּדָה יְקַבֵּץ מֵאַרְבַּע כַּנְפוֹת הָאָרֶץ:|
|13. And the envy of Ephraim shall cease, and the adversaries of Judah shall be cut off; Ephraim shall not envy Judah, nor shall Judah vex Ephraim.||יג. וְסָרָה קִנְאַת אֶפְרַיִם וְצֹרְרֵי יְהוּדָה יִכָּרֵתוּ אֶפְרַיִם לֹא יְקַנֵּא אֶת יְהוּדָה וִיהוּדָה לֹא יָצֹר אֶת אֶפְרָיִם:|
This is but one of many prophecies indicating that the kingdom of Israel under Ephraim, and Judah, would separately gather, and then eventually be united. It is my belief that complete unification will not happen until the messiah appears, but it is my hope that until that time that we can build a friendship that will serve us both in our common goals.
Following these angelic visits the prophet Moshe also appeared to Joseph Smith in the new Temple, and gave him the keys, meaning the knowledge and authority, to gather Israel in modern times, just as Moshe gathered us out of Egypt. Joseph Smith then became in our day, as Moshe was in his day: the lawgiver to Israel. Accordingly he sent Orson Hyde, a Man of Jewish heritage, to rededicate Jerusalem for the return of Israel. This prophet predicted the Zionist movement and the establishment of the state of Israel. This mission set in motion events helped lead to the establishment of the state of Israel.
There are many other equally important prophecies which have been fulfilled, and many which await fulfillment. Only by the bringing together of the whole house of Israel, the Mormon and Jewish people, can these prophecies find fulfillment.
Therefore we say unto our brothers and sisters, the Jewish people, Come let us reason together, and happily discover our common objectives. We may discover that neither Joseph can say to Judah, nor Judah to Joseph: “I have no need of thee.” For we are one family, we share a common past, and future.
The Dedication of Jerusalem for the Return of Israel
The prayers of Orson Hyde on the Mount of Olives
“O Thou! who art from everlasting to everlasting, eternally and unchangeably the same, even the G-d who rules in the heavens above, and controls the destinies of men on the earth, wilt Thou not condescend, through thine infinite goodness and royal favor, to listen to the prayer of Thy servant which he this day offers up unto Thee.
“Be pleased, O Lord, to forgive all the follies, weaknesses, vanities, and sins of Thy servant, and strengthen him to resist all future temptations. Give him prudence and discernment that he may avoid the evil, and a heart to choose the good; give him fortitude to bear up under trying and adverse circumstances, and grace to endure all things for Thy name’s sake, until the end shall come, when all Israel shall rest in peace.
“Now, O Lord! Thy servant has been obedient to the heavenly vision which Thou gavest him in his native land; and under the shadow of Thine outstretched arm, he has safely arrived in this place to dedicate and consecrate this land unto Thee, for the gathering together of Judah’s scattered remnants, according to the predictions of the holy Prophets — for the building up of Jerusalem again after it has been trodden down by the Gentiles so long, and for rearing a Temple in honor of Thy name. Everlasting thanks be ascribed unto Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that Thou hast preserved Thy servant from the dangers of the seas, and from the plague and pestilence which have caused the land to mourn. The violence of man has also been restrained, and Thy providential care by night and by day has been exercised over Thine unworthy servant. Accept, therefore, O Lord, the tribute of a grateful heart for all past favors, and be pleased to continue Thy kindness and mercy towards a needy worm of the dust.
“O Thou, Who didst covenant with Abraham, Thy friend, and who didst renew that covenant with Isaac, and confirm the same with Jacob with an oath, that Thou wouldst not only give them this land for an everlasting inheritance, but that Thou wouldst also remember their seed forever. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob have long since closed their eyes in death, and made the grave their mansion. Their children are scattered and dispersed abroad among the nations of the Gentiles like sheep that have no shepherd, and are still looking forward for the fulfillment of those promises which Thou didst make concerning them; and even this land, which once poured forth nature’s richest bounty, and flowed, as it were, with milk and honey, has, to a certain extent, been smitten with barrenness and sterility.
“Grant, therefore, O Lord, in the name of Thy well-beloved Son, Jesus Christ, to remove the barrenness and sterility of this land, and let springs of living water break forth to water its thirsty soil. Let the vine and olive produce in their strength, and the fig-tree bloom and flourish. Let the land become abundantly fruitful when possessed by its rightful heirs; let it again flow with plenty to feed the returning prodigals who come home with a spirit of grace and supplication; upon it let the clouds distil virtue and richness, and let the fields smile with plenty. Let the flocks and the herds greatly increase and multiply upon the mountains and the hills; and let Thy great kindness conquer and subdue the unbelief of Thy people. Do Thou take from them their stony heart, and give them a heart of flesh; and may the Sun of Thy favor dispel the cold mists of darkness which have beclouded their atmosphere. Incline them to gather in upon this land according to Thy word. Let them come like clouds and like doves to their windows. Let the large ships of the nations bring them from the distant isles; and let kings become their nursing fathers, and queens with motherly fondness wipe the tear of sorrow from their eye.
“Thou, O Lord, did once move upon the heart of Cyrus to show favor unto Jerusalem and her children. Do Thou now also be pleased to inspire the hearts of kings and the powers of the earth to look with a friendly eye towards this place, and with a desire to see Thy righteous purposes executed in relation thereto. Let them know that it is Thy good pleasure to restore the kingdom unto Israel — raise up Jerusalem as its capital, and constitute her people a distinct nation and government, with David Thy servant, even a descendant from the loins of ancient David to be their king.
“Let that nation or that people who shall take an active part in behalf of Abraham’s children, and in the raising up of Jerusalem, find favor in Thy sight. Let not their enemies prevail against them, neither let pestilence or famine overcome them, but let the glory of Israel overshadow them, and the power of the Highest protect them; while that nation or kingdom that will not serve Thee in this glorious work must perish, according to Thy word — Yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted.
“Though Thy servant is now far from his home, and from the land bedewed with his earliest tear, yet he remembers, O Lord, his friends who are there, and family, whom for Thy sake he has left. Though poverty and privation be our earthly lot, yet ah! do Thou richly endow us with an inheritance where moth and rust do not corrupt, and where thieves do not break through and steal.
“The hands that have fed, clothed, or shown favor unto the family of Thy servant in his absence, or that shall hereafter do so, let them not lose their reward, but let a special blessing rest upon them, and in Thy kingdom let them have an inheritance when Thou shalt come to be glorified in this society.
“Do Thou also look with favor upon all those through whose liberality I have been enabled to come to this land; and in the day when Thou shalt reward all people according to their works, let these also not be passed by or forgotten, but in time let them be in readiness to enjoy the glory of those mansions which Jesus has gone to prepare. Particularly do Thou bless the stranger in Philadelphia, whom I never saw, but who sent me gold, with a request that I should pray for him in Jerusalem. Now, O Lord, let blessings come upon him from an unexpected quarter, and let his basket be filled, and his storehouse abound with plenty, and let not the good things of the earth be his only portion, but let him be found among those to whom it shall be said, `Thou hast been faithful over a few things, and I will make thee ruler over many.’
“O my Father in heaven! Baruch atah Adonai elohaynu melech ha’olam! I now ask Thee to remember Zion, with all her Stakes, and with all her assemblies. She has been grievously afflicted and smitten; she has mourned; she has wept; her enemies have triumphed, and have said, `Ah, where is thy G-d?’ Her Priests and Prophets have groaned in chains and fetters within the gloomy walls of prisons, while many were slain, and now sleep in the arms of death. How long, O Lord, shall iniquity triumph, and sin go unpunished?
“Do Thou arise in the majesty of Thy strength, and make bare Thine arm in behalf of Thy people. Redress their wrongs, and turn their sorrow into joy. Pour the spirit of light and knowledge, grace and wisdom, into the hearts of her Prophets, and clothe her Priests with salvation. Let light and knowledge march forth through the empire of darkness, and may the honest in heart flow to their standard, and join in the march to go forth to meet the Bridegroom.
“Be Thou to them a sun and a shield, their strong tower and hiding place; and in the time of distress or danger be Thou near to deliver. Also the quorum of the Twelve, do Thou be pleased to stand by them for Thou knowest the obstacles which they have to encounter, the temptations to which they are exposed, and the privations which they must suffer. Give us, therefore, strength according to our day, and help us to bear a faithful testimony of Jesus and His Gospel, to finish with fidelity and honor the work which Thou hast given us to do, and then give us a place in Thy glorious kingdom. And let this blessing rest upon Israel. And all the glory and honor will we ascribe unto G-d forever and ever. Amen.”
בְּרֵאשִׁית בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֵת הָאָרֶץ:
Breishit bara Elohim et haShamayim v’et ha’Aretz.
1 verse, 7 words, 28 letters, and 20 vowels.
All add up to what you know as
The very first sentence of the Torah:
“In the beginning, G-d created the heavens and the earth.”
Which tells us that all of it, And each of us,
started from the moment G-d began to create.
But look a little closer, and you will see
that what you think you see,
What you think it says,
You will have to look really close —
because the place of this misunderstanding isn’t big.
It is, in fact,
You won’t find it in book,
or a parasha, or a chapter,
or a verse, or a word,
or even in a letter.
You’ll find it in two small dots instead of one straight line –
under the first letter of the first word
in the first verse of the first chapter
of the first Parasha
in the first book of the Torah.
And it changes EVERYTHING.
Ba- in the, B’ – in
Not “Ba-reishit” – “in THE beginning”
“B’reishit” – in beginning.
See it as it is:
In beginning, G-d created the heavens and the earth.
“The” is not a lot to miss – or is it?
In beginning…not the beginning.
beginning isn’t confined
to a moment in space or time.
Midrash teaches that G-d had been beginning for a long time,
long before chapter 1, verse 1 that is.
So what you thought was the beginning
is really the middle.
There was no real start –
only a middle. Or better,
one continuous beginning.
Starting and stopping, creating and destroying,
succeeding and failing,
over and over again
until arriving at this world we know.
So what then about an end?
That’s just it.
There isn’t one.
Because the ending is just like the beginning.
It’s all the middle.
Breishit, Shmot, Vayikra, Bamidbar, Dvarim…
next page? There is more.
Cycles and circles,
spiraling on top of themselves each and every year.
To teach us that each and every day,
we get the chance to begin the world
Everything is a second chance.
Even when you think it’s the first,
And when you think your work is done,
— Rabbi Geffen
May we always remember these words when faced with new ideas, new teachings and new opportunities. We are not asking you to abandon the truths and traditions you have learned, but to add more light more knowledge, and more understanding to the traditions you already have. No matter how perfect, no matter how complete the Torah is that G-d gave us on Sinai, let us open our minds and set our sights to use the revealed torah of G-d to progress forward, not to reject further truths, but to make additional traditions, and progress as we were intended by G-d to progress. If G-d is not standing still, neither should we.
You are a complete person, and a complete Jew regardless of whether you can now accept the offered hand of fellowship we are extending to you, but we ask you not to let the wholeness of your faith close us out, your brethren of the house and lineage of Israel. There is much we can offer each other in understanding, fellowship, and the fulfillment of the gathering of all Israel preparatory for the messianic age which is coming. We seek only to restore Israel. Let us therefore work together to become a unified people of the whole law! May we all join in one voice to proclaim the pesach prayer for the gathering in of all the Diaspora of Israel, both the tribes gathered by Ephraim, and the tribes gathered by Judah:
Next year in Jerusalem!
 Elder Legrand Richards wrote an essay titled “the Mormon and Jewish People” This essay follows many of the same points and was based on his original essay.
 In other words what will happen to your descendants: the Mormon and Jewish people.
 i.e. the descendants of Israel, both of Judah and of other tribes shall be called Jews.
 Ensign, Dec 1976, 67