And, finding there was greater happiness and peace and rest for me, I sought for the blessings of the fathers, and the right whereunto I should be ordained to administer the same (Abraham, vs 2)

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Jacobs Ladder

And Jacob went out from Beer-sheba, and went toward Haran. And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep. And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it (Genesis 28:10-2).
6 He that ascended up on high, as also he descended below all things, in that he comprehended all things, that he might be in all and through all things, the light of truth; (D&C 88:6)
Three great articles that should be read:
The temple as a Place of Ascent to god (Fairmormon article)
Ascension Of Isaiah - Apocrypha
The Ultimatum of Human Life Poem by Eliza R Snow

I only do what I see my Father do

How did Jesus Christ do what he did if he did not see his father do it? He said he only does  what he sees the father do. Joseph said the same thing that he only did that which he saw the father do.

Here is part of Trumans G Madsens CD series on the Prophet of Joseph smith
CD1 Track 4
There is a deeper point having to do with their[god/jesus] relationship. From the teachings of JS taught In the 1840s and I think it is a extension of what he learned that morning, that the other statement of the master namely that “I do nothing but what I see the father do” has infinite implications. How could he has seen it as a witness? Joseph Fielding Smith replied "not as a witness, he saw it in vision, Christ was blessed to see it before he entered mortality. To see in vision what the father had done before him in a prior eon if you will". And again the relationship is exact. If Christ himself was uniquely begotten and first born in the spirit and if he was thee Christ, not only of this earth but as the prophet taught later of the galaxy. So before him was the father himself a redeemer having worked out the salvation of a family which he was a brother not a father. Now this is deep water, it is drawn as a conclusion by JS in his King Follet Discourse and whatever else it may mean I take it to be mind boggling. It means at least this, that the father knows exactly by experience what the son has been through and the son by experience knows exactly what the father has experienced. And when he says “I and my father are one”, it is not a metaphysical identity, it is oneness of spirit, harmonic throbbing’s of love and insight that can only come in patterns of eternal redemption. (May be grammar errors from original)
Perfect in the Greek means complete or complete the ascent.
“There are three grand secrets lying in this chapter, [2 Peter 1] which no man can dig out, unless by the light of revelation, and which unlock the whole chapter as the things that are written are only hints of things which existed in the prophet’s mind, which are not written concerning eternal glory . . . Paul ascended into the third heavens, and he could understand the three principal rounds of Jacob’s ladder—the telestial, the terrestrial, and the celestial glories or kingdoms, where Paul saw and heard things which were not lawful for him to utter. I could explain a hundred fold more than I ever have of the glories of the kingdoms manifested to me in the vision, were I permitted, and were the people prepared to receive them. The Lord deals with this people as a tender parent with a child, communicating light and intelligence and the knowledge of his ways as they can bear it. The inhabitants of the earth are asleep; they know not the day of their visitation. The Lord hath set the bow in the cloud for a sign that while it shall be seen, seed time and harvest, summer and winter shall not fail; but when it shall disappear woe to that generation, for behold the end cometh quickly. Contend earnestly for the like precious faith with the Apostle Peter, ‘and add to your faith virtue,’ knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness, charity; ‘for if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.’ Another point, after having all these qualifications, he lays this injunction upon the people ‘to make your calling and election sure.’ He is emphatic upon this subject—after adding all this virtue, knowledge, etc., ‘Make your calling and election sure.’ What is the secret—the starting point? ‘According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness.’ How did he obtain all things? Through the knowledge of Him who hath called him. There could not anything be given, pertaining to life and godliness, without knowledge. Woe! woe! woe to Christendom!—especially the divines and priests if this be true. Salvation is for a man to be saved from all his enemies; for until a man can triumph over death, he is not saved. A knowledge of the priesthood alone will do this . . . We have no claim in our eternal compact, in relation to eternal things, unless our actions and contracts and all things tend to this. But after all this, you have got to make your calling and election sure. If this injunction would lie largely on those to whom it was spoken, how much more those of the present generation! 1st key: Knowledge is the power of salvation. 2nd key: Make your calling and election sure. 3rd key: It is one thing to be on the mount and hear the excellent voice, etc., and another to hear the voice declare to you, You have a part and lot in that kingdom” (TPJS., 304-6).
I referenced a book called the Doctrine of meeting christ in this life in my favorite links by Eric Chun. The following is taken from that book.
“And, behold, the Lord stood above it [the ladder], and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of” (Genesis 28:13-5; e.a.).
The Lord is standing, which implies that He is awake, in contrast to the sleeping Jacob. The Lord stands above the ladder. He does not stand on it, as He is not dependent upon it as a means to an end.
“And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not” (Genesis 28:16).
He recognized the presence of the Lord.
“And he was afraid, and said, How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven” (Genesis 28:17).
Joseph said o this same ladder in the King Follet Discourse.
When you climb up a ladder, you must begin at the bottom, and ascend step by step, until you arrive at the top; and so it is with the principles of the gospel—you must begin with the first, and go on until you learn all the principles of exaltation. But it will be a great while after you have passed through the veil before you will have learned them. It is not all to be comprehended in this world; it will be a great work to learn our salvation and exaltation even beyond the grave.
Notice its not all to be comprehended in this world, we must pass through the veil of unbelief, this is not death but parting the veil to converse with the Lord to receive that which is "not lawful to utter". It is this that prepares us for exaltation. In a literal since to be embraced by our lord and savior and as Joseph said to "hear the voice declare to you, You have a part and lot in that kingdom” (TPJS., 304-6). Only those with an inheritance will have part in the celestial kingdom. That is the exact promise given to Abraham, the same promise we need to receive.

King Follet Discourse further states:
My Father worked out His kingdom with fear and trembling, and I must do the same; and when I get my kingdom, I shall present it to My Father, so that He may obtain kingdom upon kingdom, and it will exalt Him in glory. He will then take a higher exaltation, and I will take His place, and thereby become exalted myself. So that Jesus treads in the tracks of His Father, and inherits what God did before; and God is thus glorified and exalted in the salvation and exaltation of all His children. It is plain beyond disputation, and you thus learn some of the first principles of the gospel, about which so much hath been said... (KFD)
What did Jesus say? (Mark it, Elder Rigdon!) The scriptures inform us that Jesus said, as the Father hath power in himself, even so hath the Son power—to do what? Why, what the Father did. The answer is obvious—in a manner to lay down his body and take it up again. Jesus, what are you going to do? To lay down my life as my Father did, and take it up again. Do you believe it? If you do not believe it you do not believe the Bible. The scriptures say it, and I defy all the learning and wisdom and all the combined powers of earth and hell together to refute it. Here, then, is eternal life—to know the only wise and true God; and you have got to learn how to be gods yourselves, and to be kings and priests to God, the same as all gods have done before you, namely, by going from one small degree to another, and from a small capacity to a great one; from grace to grace, from exaltation to exaltation, until you attain to the resurrection of the dead, and are able to dwell in everlasting burnings, and to sit in glory, as do those who sit enthroned in everlasting power. And I want you to know that God, in the last days, while certain individuals are proclaiming His name, is not trifling with you or me. (KFD)
Orson Pratt diagram about the kings and priests is shown below.. Jacobs ladder has 7 rungs on it . Each rung is represented in scripture search them out.

Commentary on it:
The above diagram shows the order and unity of the kingdom of God. The eternal Father sits at the head, crowned King of kings and Lord of lords. Wherever the other lines meet, there sits a king and a priest unto God, bearing rule, authority, and dominion under the Father. He is one with the Father, because his kingdom is joined to his Father's and becomes part of it. 
The most eminent and distinguished prophets who have laid down their lives for their testimony (Jesus among the rest), will be crowned at the head of the largest kingdoms under the Father, and will be one with Christ as Christ is one with his Father; for their kingdoms are all joined together, and such as do the will of the Father, the same are his mothers, sisters, and brothers. He that has been faithful over a few things, will be made ruler over many things; he that has been faithful over ten talents, shall have dominion over ten cities, and he that has been faithful over five talents, shall have dominion over five cities, and to every man will be given a kingdom and a dominion, according to his merit, powers, and abilities to govern and control. It will be seen by the above diagram that there are kingdoms of all sizes, an infinite variety to suit all grades of merit and ability. The chosen vessels unto God are the kings and priests that are placed at the head of these kingdoms. These have received their washings and anointings in the temple of God on this earth; they have been chosen, ordained, and anointed kings and priests, to reign as such in the resurrection of the just. Such as have not received the fulness of the priesthood, (for the fulness of the priesthood includes the authority of both king and priest) and have not been anointed and ordained in the temple of the Most High, may obtain salvation in the celestial kingdom, but not a celestial crown. Many are called to enjoy a celestial glory, yet few are chosen to wear a celestial crown, or rather, to be rulers in the celestial kingdom.
While this portion of eternity that we now live in, called time, continues, and while the other portions of eternity that we may hereafter dwell in, continue, those lines in the foregoing diagram, representing kingdoms, will continue to extend and be lengthened out; and thus, the increase of our kingdoms will increase the kingdom of our God, even as Daniel hath said: “of the increase of his kingdom and government there shall be no end.” All these kingdoms are one kingdom, and there is a King over kings, and a Lord over lords. There are Lords many, and Gods many, for they are called Gods to whom the word of God comes, and the word of God comes to all these kings and priests. But to our branch of the kingdom there is but one God, to whom we all owe the most perfect submission and loyalty; yet our God is just as subject to still higher intelligences, as we should be to him. 
...These kingdoms, which are one kingdom, are designed to extend till they not only embrace this world, but every other planet that rolls in the blue vault of heaven. Thus will all things be gathered in one during the dispensation of the fulness of times, and the Saints will not only possess the earth, but all things else, for, says Paul, “All things are yours, whether Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas, or the world, or life, or death, or things present, or things to come: all are yours, and ye are Christ's, and Christ is God's”
(Orson Hyde, “A Diagram of the Kingdom of God,” Millennial Star 9 [15 January 1847]: 23-24).
Some other quotes to ponder:
to the Christian world, who are blindly led by the blind.1 I will refer to another Scripture. “Now,”says God, when He visited Moses in the bush,2 (Moses was a stammering sort of a boy like me)3 God said, “Thou shalt be a God unto the children of Israel.”4 God said, “Thou shalt be a God unto Aaron, and he shall be thy spokesman.”5 I believe those Gods that God reveals as Gods to be sons of God,6 and all can cry, “Abba, Father!”7 Sons of God who exalt themselves to be Gods, even from before the foundation of the world,8 and are the only Gods I have a reverence for (TPJS, pg 375) 
3 And this is the manner after which they were ordained—beingcalled and prepared from the foundation of the world according to the foreknowledge of God, on account of their exceeding faith and good works; in the first place being left to choose good or evil; therefore they having chosen good, and exercising exceedingly great faith, are called with a holy calling, yea, with that holy calling which was prepared with, and according to, a preparatory redemption for such. (Alma 13:3)
9 As all the visible creation is an effect of faith, so is salvation, also. (We mean salvation in its most extensive latitude of interpretation, whether it is temporal or spiritual.) In order to have this subject clearly set before the mind, let us ask what situation must a person be in, in order to be saved? or what is the difference between a saved man and one who is not saved? We answer from what we have before seen of the heavenly worlds, they must be persons who can work by faith, and who are able, by faith to be ministering spirits to them who shall be heirs of salvation. And they must have faith to enable them to act in the presence of the Lord, otherwise they cannot be saved. And what constitutes the real difference between a saved person and one not saved, is the difference in the degree of their faith: one's faith has become perfect enough to lay hold upon eternal life, and the other's has not. But to be a little more particular, let us ask, where shall we find a prototype into whose likeness we may be assimulated, in order that we may be made partakers of life and salvation? or in other words, where shall we find a saved being? for if we can find a saved being, we may ascertain, without much difficulty, what all others must be, in order to be saved - they must be like that individual or they cannot be saved: we think, that it will not be a matter of dispute, that two beings, who are unlike each other, cannot both be saved; for whatever constitutes the salvation of one, will constitute the salvation of every creature which will be saved: and if we find one saved being in all existence, we may see what all others must be, or else not be saved. We ask, then, where is the prototype? or where is the saved being? We conclude as to the answer of this question there will be no dispute among those who believe the bible, that it is Christ: all will agree in this that he is the prototype or standard of salvation, or in other words, that he is a saved being a just and holy being; and if he were any thing different from what he is he would not be saved; for his salvation depends on his being precisely what he is and nothing else; for if it were possible for him to change in the least degree, so sure he would fail of salvation and lose all his dominion, power, authority and glory, which constitutes salvation; for salvation consists in the glory, authority, majesty, power and dominion which Jehovah possesses, and in nothing else; and no being can possess it but himself or one like him: Thus says John, in his first epistle, 3:2 and 3: Behold, now we are the sons of God, and it doth not appear what we shall be; but we know, that when he shall appear we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And any man that has this hope in him purifies himself, even as he is pure.--Why purify himself as he is pure? because, if they do not they cannot be like him. (LOF, Lecture 7)
“They cannot progress through the ceaseless rounds of eternity except they abide in the [new and everlasting] covenant, and abide the law that governs it” (Erastus Snow, JD 24:61). 
“When man, and the planet on which he lives, with all its fullness, shall have completed all their series of progressive changes, so as to be adapted to the highest glories of which their several characters and species are capable, then, the whole will be annexed to, or numbered with the eternal heavens, and will there fulfill their eternal rounds, being another acquisition to the mansions or eternally increasing dominions of the great Creator and Redeemer” (Parley P. Pratt, Key to the Science of Theology, 58). 
“As the prophet says concerning our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, ‘To the increase of his kingdom there shall be no end.’ It shall go on increasing with every cycle of eternity, as long as time endures. There shall be no end to the increase of his kingdom. His glory consisted of this; and the glory of God consists in the number of his posterity; and as generation succeeds generation, until the earth is filled and glorified, other worlds will be rolled into existence, upon which the posterity of God, our Heavenly Father, shall increase throughout the endless ages of eternity” (George Q. Cannon, JD 14:128).
James E. Talmage
""It is reasonable to believe, in the absence of direct revelation by which alone absolute knowledge of the matter could be acquired, that, in accordance with God's plan of eternal progression, advancement from grade to grade within any kingdom, and from kingdom to kingdom, will be provided for. But if the recipients of a lower glory be enabling to advance, surely the intelligences of higher rank will not be stopped in their progress; and thus we may conclude, that degrees and grades will ever characterize the kingdoms of our God. Eternity is progressive; perfection is relative; the essential feature of God's living purpose is its associated power of eternal increase."
Brigham Young
The clay that was marred in the potters hands was thrown back into the unprepared portion, to be prepared over again. So it will be with every wicked man and woman, and every wicked nation, kingdom, and government on the earth, sooner or later; they will be thrown back to the native element from which they originated, to be worked over again, and be prepared to enjoy some sort of kingdom." (JD 2:124)
The Potters Wheel
"Upon the same principle supposing I have a lump of clay which I put upon my wheel, out of which clay I want to make a jug; I have to turn it into as many as 50 or 100 shapes before I get it into a jug. How many shapes do you suppose you are put into before you became Saints, or before you become perfect and sanctified to enter into the celestial glory of God? You have got to be like that clay in the hands of the potter. Do you not know that the Lord directed the prophet anciently, to go down to the potter's house to see a miracle on the wheel? 
Suppose the potter takes a lump of clay, and putting it on the wheel, goes to work to form it into a vessel, and workis it out this way, and that way, and the other way, but the clay is refractory and snappish, he still trys it, but it will break, ans snap, and snarl, and thus the potter will work it and work it until he is satisfied he cannot bring it into the shape he wants, and it mars upon the wheell; he takes his tool, then and cuts it off the wheel, and thows it into the mill to be ground over again, until it becomes passive, (don't you think you will go to hell if you are not passive?) and after it is ground there so many days, and it becomes passive, he takes the same lump, and makes of it a vessel unto honor. 
Now do you see into that brethren? I know the potters can. I tell you, brethren, if you are not passive you will have to go into that mill, and perhaps have to grind there one thousand years, and then the Gospel will be offered to you again, and then if you will not accept of it and become passive, you will have to go into the mill again, and thus you will have offers of salvation from time to time, until all the human family, except the sons of perdition, are redeemed. The spirits of men will have the Gospel as we do, and they are to be judged according to men in the flesh. Let us be passive, and take a course that will be perfectly submissive. "
(JD 1:161)

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