Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Temple Veil and Christ's Body

I just read this post a few minutes ago - wow!

The post refers to Hebrews 10:19-20 and reads:
Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,

By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;

I like to read Bible scriptures first in the KJV and then in the NIV.  I think the footnote in the NIV is quite insightful.  It says, "When Jesus died, the curtain separating the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place was "torn in two from top to bottom" (Mark 15:38).  The curtain symbolizes the body of Christ in terms of suffering: Like the curtain, his body was torn to open the way into the divince presence."

The other scripture she notes in her post is John 20:26-27 which reads:
And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.

Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

This connection between feeling the marks in the Savior's body and the temple was made to me while I was on my mission.  A group of Church members were passing through Guatemala and happened to stay in the same hotel as we were (we were at a Zone Conference).  They talked of how the Savior ministered to the Nephites and how it relates to the temple.  It was eye-opening to say the least.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Stretched Forth His Hand

While reading Mosiah 16:1 this morning (in Spanish), I read a phrase that struck me in a different way.  In Spanish the phrase is "extendió la mano"  In English the phrase is "stretched forth his hand".  As I've read that phrase my whole life in English, the visual thought in my mind is that of a prophet putting his hand up in the air as if to emphasize a point for dramatic effect.  But in reading it in Spanish, it connotes a different visual thought - that of someone holding his hand out as if to help someone else - like pulling someone up out of a hole.

This second visual thought makes more sense when you read Jacob 5:47: But what could I have done more in my vineyard? Have I slackened mine hand, that I have not nourished it? Nay, I have nourished it, and I have digged about it, and I have pruned it, and I have dunged it; and I have stretched forth mine hand almost all the day long, and the end draweth nigh. And it grieveth me that I should hew down all the trees of my vineyard, and cast them into the fire that they should be burned. Who is it that has corrupted my vineyard?

In this context, the Lord is holding out a hand of rescue.  I now think that whenever a prophet stretches forth his hand before speaking, his hand is reaching out as if to help someone out of a hole, not reaching his hand to the sky.

Another context to think about is the veil at the temple.  The next time you go, listen for those words and note the actions.

Lastly, there are a few references of hands being stretched forth in the New Testament one of which is the Lord rescuing Peter after Peter's faith begins to falter while trying to walk on water.