The Iron Rod Podcast
The Iron Rod Podcast
Iron Rod 014 - The Three Watches

The Joseph Smith Translation of Luke 12 make a significant change to some information Jesus provides his apostles. Whereas the KJV has Christ talk about a lord who could come in either the second watch or the third watch, the JST has him coming in the first watch, the second watch, and the third watch. And all times he comes as a thief in the night. This forms the basis of the Three Watches, and helps explain why the dispensation of the fullness of times has not yet arrived.

In this episode we show how many other scriptures support this Three Watch model, and also discuss related topics like Joseph Smith’s second commission, and why we should really call the 1830s the “Foundation” rather than the “Restoration”.

Some key scriptures mentioned in this episode:

Three Watches
Luke 12:37-38 / JST
Hebrew 9:16-17
Matthew 16:16-20
1 Nephi 14:1
Ether 4:6-7
2  Nephi 30 5-8
2 Nephi 3:5-15, 24
D&C 88:80-94
D&C 101:43-62

Foundation vs. Restoration
D&C 1:29-30
D&C 58:3-11
D&C 64:30-33
D&C 94:1
D&C 124:118
D&C 86:8-10
D&C 77:15
D&C 103:15-22
D&C 84:2-5
D&C 45:16-17, 40-42, 66-71





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10 comments on “Iron Rod 014 – The Three Watches

  1. Hi from Scotland
    These podcasts are great and delivered in a very humble manner. I will try to make this brief. I believe the 3 watches can be found in Nephi’s 3 attempts to get the brass plates in 1st Nephi chapters 3 and 4. The 1st 2 watches are in chapter 3. Verse 11 they cast lots and the lot fell on laman [he was the 1st born son). Lots were cast on the saviour at his crucifixion. I find it interesting that you are saying the 1st watch may have started at the timd of the atonement. It ties in. I dont want to make too much comparison between Laman and the saviour, except to say think of the man he could have been had he just listened.
    The 2nd watch is in verse 16 when they took all their gold and silver etc in the hopes of getting the plates. Call it their surplus. It looks like consecration in the 2nd watch. Of course they failed again and in verse 27 they fled into the wilderness, just like the church did.
    Chapter 4 deals with the third watch. Nephi repeatedly talks about how mighty God is. He says let us be like Moses. He is literally a thief in the night here. He finds Laban drunk. 2nd Nephi 27 describes the world in our day as drunken. Look who Laban has been hanging out woth in verse 26…the brethren of the church. Who was that president Nelson was meeting with just last week? And of course Nephi is successful and gets the brass plates just like the 3rd watch will be successful. I think is some relevance in laban losing his head. The secret combination has a logo, a pyramid with a capstone. I think God is going to cut it clean off. I hope you see what i’m seeing.

    • Watcher Mar 12, 2019

      It is great to hear from someone from Scotland!

      Some of my relatives on my fathers side are from Scotland. I come from the Robertson clam. I would love to go track down some of my relatives some time.

      It is interesting how prophetic themes seem to appear in types and shadows throughout scriptural narratives.

      Thanks for sharing.

    • Jessi H Mar 13, 2019

      That’s a great find, the three attempts to get the plates. Good eye. I’m going to looking for more three’s now. ?

  2. One Who Is Thirsting Mar 14, 2019

    Joseph’s 2nd commission in the 3rd watch is so clearly outlined in the scriptures.

    Just take a look at this…

    D&C 103:21
    Verily, verily I say unto you, that my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., is the man to whom I likened the servant to whom the Lord of the vineyard spake in the parable which I have given unto you.

    If we take a deeper look into the parable in 101 and its explanation in 103, we discover some subtle keys as to WHEN and HOW this will occur.

    Let’s look at a few verses in D&C 101.

    53Ought ye not to have done even as I commanded you, and—after ye had planted the vineyard, and built the hedge round about, and set watchmen upon the walls thereof—built the tower also, and set a watchman upon the tower, and watched for my vineyard, and not have fallen asleep, lest the enemy should come upon you?

    Interestingly enough verse 31 gives insight into what it means to fall asleep. This is talking about during the millennium, but it still gives context to the use of the term to sleep.

    31And when he dies he shall not sleep, that is to say in the earth, but shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye, and shall be caught up, and his rest shall be glorious.

    To sleep means to die and be put at rest on the earth.

    After the parable in 101 the Lord tells us why Zion must be redeemed, even by his warriors.

    64That the work of the gathering together of my saints may continue, that I may build them up unto my name upon holy places; for the time of harvest is come, and my word must needs be fulfilled.
    65Therefore, I must gather together my people, according to the parable of the wheat and the tares, that the wheat may be secured in the garners to possess eternal life, and be crowned with celestial glory, when I shall come in the kingdom of my Father to reward every man according as his work shall be;

    It’s here where we learn of the parallel between the parable in 101 and the wheat and the tares.

    Just who is the enemy spoken of in verse 53?

    When we read about the wheat and the tares parable in D&C 86 we learn that Satan is the enemy.

    3And after they have fallen asleep the great persecutor of the church, the apostate, the whore, even Babylon, that maketh all nations to drink of her cup, in whose hearts the enemy, even Satan, sitteth to reign—behold he soweth the tares; wherefore, the tares choke the wheat and drive the church into the wilderness.

    There’s that term “asleep” again.

    When does this enemy come? After the apostles have fallen asleep.

    It is interesting to note that during the New Testament times, Christ was the sower of the seed and now during Jospeh’s ministry it’s the apostles.

    Matt 13:37
    He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man;

    D&C 86:2
    Behold, verily I say, the field was the world, and the apostles were the sowers of the seed;

    What’s difficult to determine is which apostles. Is it referring to Peter, James and John? Both those apostles and Christ are part of the first watch.

    Or is it Christ during the day first watch and Joseph and Oliver and others of the first laborers who were also referred to as apostles in the second watch?

    Both have the same net result — driving the church into the wilderness. Just the timing of each is different.

    Anyway, the interpretation is open. The point is that the servants fall asleep and the enemy comes. And that sleep is death.

    Then we have something interesting in the JST for the parable of the wheat and the tares.

    JST Matt. 13:42-43

    42For in that day, before the Son of Man shall come, he shall send forth his angels and messengers of heaven.
    43And they shall gather out of his kingdom all things which offend, and them which do iniquity, and shall cast them out among the wicked; and there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth

    Before Christ returns he shall send forth his angles.

    Now let us return to D&C 103:21

    Verily, verily I say unto you, that my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., is the man to whom I likened the servant to whom the Lord of the vineyard spake in the parable which I have given unto you.

    And what is he to do?

    22Therefore let my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., say unto the strength of my house, my young men and the middle aged—Gather yourselves together unto the land of Zion, upon the land which I have bought with money that has been consecrated unto me.

    He’s to gather the strength of the Lord’s house.

    Let’s put this into context by backing up a few verses.

    13Behold, this is the blessing which I have promised after your tribulations, and the tribulations of your brethren—your redemption, and the redemption of your brethren, even their restoration to the land of Zion, to be established, no more to be thrown down.

    The Lord is promising to redeem Zion.

    15Behold, I say unto you, the redemption of Zion must needs come by power;

    And this redemption must come by power. What kind of power? What does that mean?

    16Therefore, I will raise up unto my people a man, who shall lead them like as Moses led the children of Israel.

    The Lord is going to show forth that power by raising up a man. Could it be by raising him up from the dead?

    And now the culminating verse, the one right before identifying Jospeh as the man.

    20But I say unto you: Mine angels shall go up before you, and also my presence, and in time ye shall possess the goodly land.

    Who are his angels? Better yet, what’s an angel?

    D&C 129:1 has the answer.

    There are two kinds of beings in heaven, namely: Angels, who are resurrected personages, having bodies of flesh and bones—


    Let’s read D&C 103:16, 20-21 together with this understanding in mind

    16Therefore, I will raise up [from the dead] unto my people a man, who shall lead them like as Moses led the children of Israel.
    20But I say unto you: Mine angels [resurrected beings] shall go up before you, and also my presence, and in time ye shall possess the goodly land.
    21Verily, verily I say unto you, that my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., is the [resurrected] man to whom I likened the servant to whom the Lord of the vineyard spake in the parable which I have given unto you.

    • Your case is airtight… in your key buttress comment that could have been a blog…
      I like to include in arguably the most important scriptures for our day, Christ in Third Nephi 11-30. After calling Nephi out, Christ reviewed, presented and expounded the Scriptures and then commanded.
      6 And now it came to pass that when Jesus had said these words he said unto them again, after he had expounded all the scriptures unto them which they had received, he said unto them: Behold, other scriptures I would that ye should write, that ye have not.
      7 And it came to pass that he said unto Nephi: Bring forth the record which ye have kept.
      8 And when Nephi had brought forth the records, and laid them before him, he cast his eyes upon them and said:
      9 Verily I say unto you, I commanded my servant Samuel, the Lamanite, that he should testify unto this people, that at the day that the Father should glorify his name in me that there were many saints who should arise from the dead, and should appear unto many, and should minister unto them. And he said unto them: Was it not so?
      10 And his disciples answered him and said: Yea, Lord, Samuel did prophesy according to thy words, and they were all fulfilled.
      11 And Jesus said unto them: How be it that ye have not written this thing, that many saints did arise and appear unto many and did minister unto them?
      12 And it came to pass that Nephi remembered that this thing had not been written.
      13 And it came to pass that Jesus commanded that it should be written; therefore it was written according as he commanded.

      We know to whom and why the book of Mormon is written…I believe that Christ repeated twice and required the inclusion for us to know that these came back from the dead and ministered.
      Why is it such a stretch to think that all the prophecies and promises in the Doctorine and Covenants can be fullfilled by someone returning from the dead?

      Christ also teaches a major preemptive issue of our day prohibiting us from entering his kingdom!

      22 Many will say to me in that day: Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name, and in thy name have cast out devils, and in thy name done many wonderful works?
      23 And then will I profess unto them: I never knew you;( JST you never knew me) depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

      19 But, verily, I say unto you that the Father hath commanded me, and I tell it unto you, that ye were separated from among them because of their iniquity; therefore it is because of their iniquity that they know not of you.
      20 And verily, I say unto you again that the other tribes hath the Father separated from them; and it is because of their iniquity that they know not of them.
      It is my believe that in preparation for living the law of consecration, if we cannot accurately identify iniquity and its interwoven tentacles that we daily accept eagerly as society’s norm, that consecration cannot be adequately prepared for if even fully comprehended. Blood and sins of this generation…

      • One Who Is Thirsting Mar 15, 2019

        That 3rd Nephi find is so valuable and I’ve completley forgotten about it. Thank you.

  3. Thirster Mar 19, 2019

    I recall Searcher referring to the 3 comings of Christ as a “thief in the night”.

    Along that same line of reasoning the Lord came to his temple suddenly in the 2nd Watch. This could be likened to a thief in the night.

    As was noted, this was an appearance to Joseph and Oliver. And it was Oliver’s brother Warren to write down the visions and never spoke of them again.

    Look at these verses from section 106 to Warren Cowdery just hiding in plain sight. These were given in Nov. 1834 just 18 months prior to the Vision behind the veil in 1836.

    It is my will that my servant Warren A. Cowdery should be appointed and ordained a presiding high priest over my church, in the land of Freedom and the regions round about;
    4And again, verily I say unto you, the coming of the Lord draweth nigh, and it overtaketh the world as a thief in the night—
    5Therefore, gird up your loins, that you may be the children of light, and that day shall not overtake you as a thief.
    6And again, verily I say unto you, there was joy in heaven when my servant Warren bowed to my scepter, and separated himself from the crafts of men;
    7Therefore, blessed is my servant Warren, for I will have mercy on him; and, notwithstanding the vanity of his heart, I will lift him up inasmuch as he will humble himself before me.
    8And I will give him grace and assurance wherewith he may stand; and if he continue to be a faithful witness and a light unto the church I have prepared a crown for him in the mansions of my Father. Even so. Amen.

    The Lord came as a thief in the night as prophesied and he was able to stand as a faithful witness of it by writing it down to be preserved as a light unto the church.

  4. Thirsting Mar 25, 2019

    If when Christ came during the Meridian of Time was the first watch and his sudden appearance in the the Kirtland temple was the second watch, could it be possible to say that the third watch would be when he comes to the group of priesthood leaders in Adam-Ondi-Ahman?

  5. One Who Is Thirsting Apr 1, 2019

    I was listening to an old cassette series I had on the D&C by Cleon Skousen and he was talking about D&C 113.

    It was interesting to hear him speak about the watches without speaking about them.

    Because the genealogy of the Rod and Root are the same, he said that he believes that it could quite literally be the SAME person.

    That the Rod is Jospeh during the 1st and 2nd watch, “whom there is laid much power.”

    And the Root is Jospeh during the 3rd watch “who rightly belongs the priesthood, the keys of the kingdom, for an ensign, and the gathering of [the Lord’s] people in the last days.

    He went in to read 2 Nephi 3 and Jospeh’s patriarchal blessing given him from his father.

    I wonder how many other “main stream” Mormons believe in Joseph’s second commission?