We review the dedication of Zion August 2-3 1831. We compare the two versions of Sidney’s description of Zion, and discuss Section 59 that describes the Lord’s expectations for those that live in Zion.
Are you suggesting that God blessing the seventh day of creation in Genesis only applied to that portion of creation, and that there was no commandment to honor the regular weekly Sabbath until Moses, which was fulfilled and ended by Christ? Are there any other references to honoring the seventh day (besides DC 68:29) after the coming of Christ? Thanks!
The records we have today introduce sabbath day observance after leaving Egypt but before arriving at Mount Sinai. When God blessed the seventh day of creation, Adam and Eve were living in the Garden in the presence of God and would continue to do so indefinitely – enjoying the blessings of eternal life and resting from their labors. Once they disobeyed, they had to work to grow food that used to grow naturally. There is no mention of humans observing a sabbath day of rest before Egypt nor before the flood in the Old Testament nor Joseph’s revisions of it. Paul says in Colossians 2:16 “let no man therefor judge you…of the sabbath day.” As I mentioned, there is no mention of sabbath observance after Christ’s visit in 3 Nephi. All those data points contradict the LDS teaching that sabbath day observance has always been and always will be a commandment. From the record we have, a sabbath day of rest appears to have been part of the law of Moses and was fulfilled at Christ’s death.
With that in mind, I think it is significant that Section 59 is only addressed to those in Zion. D&C 68:29 reiterates it explicitly, “the inhabitants of Zion shall also observe the Sabbath day to keep it holy.” Why not all the members of the church? I speculate that as we are building up Zion and waiting for the Lord to dwell there, a sabbath day observance would be pointing us toward the day of his arrival. Perhaps because we will be so busy preparing Zion that we will need a break to remind us why we are doing all the hard work and help keep us focused on the goal rather than the process.
I may just be picking a nit, but my reading of the Genesis account is a little different. All the children of men were created on the sixth day (JST Genesis 2:6). After the seventh day of creation (the initial sabbath) God then creates Adam as well as the Garden of Eden. The initial sabbath would have included all the children of men (created spiritually) in the presence of God in heaven. I think this is the true extent of the pre-existence. Our spirits were created on the 6th day. We spend the 7th day with God. Subsequent to the seventh day of creation (likely the 8th day) Adam, the first man on the earth, is created. From that point on, our spirits begin to come to earth and take on a physical body.
I still agree that the millennium is pointing us to the restoration of Eden and being reunited with God, though here on earth in the flesh instead of in heaven as spirits.
jst Math. 11:29 Then spake Jesus, saying, Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
30 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls; for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
In classic mormon/natural man fashion we give ourselves more things to do than are necessary and keep refusing the light yoke Christ offers us. Interestingly the word yoke is from the same indo-european root as yoga. On my mission I remember riding a bus and the thought came to me quite clearly saying, “what’s the point of going to church if you believe?” and I realized I didn’t really have a good answer to the question. Over time I’ve thought a lot about that question and I’ve realized that there isn’t much point except to shore up the faith of those who are week and to have a place to worship together. But the true believer has to be self-sufficient eventually and does what the spirit directs not just blind rituals. If it’s sunday but the spirit tells you you need to go buy some food to give to a family in need that’s what you do.
On Mike’s comment above. The creation story in Moses is indeed quite illuminating but as with most scriptures seems to be leaving a lot out and some mysteries yet to be revealed. Not only is Adam the first human created in the flesh, but 3:7 says: And I, the Lord God, formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul, the first flesh upon the earth, the first man also; nevertheless, all things were before created; but spiritually were they created and made according to my word.
So they’re also the first flesh of all flesh on the earth which is quite interesting. A careful reading of the spiritual creation in chapter 2 says that spirits are both male and female, and in 3:23 says she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of man. Followed by the command to become one flesh again.
But anyways yes I think the point of the sabbath is pointing us towards the promised rest we receive when we will dwell in God’s presence (which I had never really thought about fully before), and its applicability today depends on what the spirit compels you to do. I choose not to attend the apostate church’s meetings and rather try to do service on the weekend and every day if I can. But for others your path in this time of darkness may be different.
I agree there are a whole lot of threads to be pulled on in the creation account and there are some details we may need to wait to get. When I did a line by line, word for word comparison of the creation accounts, I discovered contradictions in the Abraham account which makes much of that content suspect.
Further, the Moses/JST account is very coherent. It actually fits chronologically as it is written. Because of the traditions and interpretations in the Book of Abraham, a lot of people have to make the account fast forward, rewind, etc. instead of reading it straight forward.
The idea that other beings, particularly us as spirits, participated in the creation causes a lot of these problems. The scriptures repeatedly point out that it is God who created all things.