What does the word wrought mean that is used in the scriptures?

What does the word wrought mean that is used in the scriptures?

Question

 

Dear Gramps,

The word “wrought” is used often in the latter-day scriptures.  It is used in the past tense.  What is the present, or future tense of the word?  And what does it mean?

Thanks for being so kind.

Robert

 

Answer

 

Robert,

Wrought is the past participle of wreak, which is a variant of work. The words wreak and work are synonyms, just slightly different forms of the same root Middle English word werken. If we say that someone is “overwrought”, we mean that he is “all worked up”. So you can mentally substitute the word “worked” for “wrought”, as in Ruth 2:19:

…And [Ruth] shewed her mother in law with whom she had wrought [worked], and said, The man’s name with whom I wrought [worked] to day is Boaz.

and in Ether 12:16:

Yea, and even all they who wrought [worked] miracles wrought [worked] them by faith, even those who were before Christ and also those who were after.

Etymologically yours,

 

Gramps

 

 

Where did the phrase “This too shall pass” come from?

Where did the phrase “This too shall pass” come from?

Question

Dear Gramps,

Where did the phrase, “This too, shall pass” come from?  It sounds Book of Mormon, or at least LDS in the spirit of what it conveys, but I can’t find it in the scriptures.  It is used very often by people within and without the Church.

Any ideas?

Robert

 

Answer

Dear Robert,

It sounds like something biblical because it comes from biblical regions! Edward Fitzgerald (A Collection of Wise Saws and Modern Instances) attributes it to an exchange between between Solomon and a sultan. A handful of Persian (modern day Iran) poets from the 1100’s have also used the phrase. Abraham Lincoln shared the story (probably based on Fitzgerald’s telling) about the time it was getting popular in America:

 “It is said an Eastern monarch once charged his wise men to invent him a sentence, to be ever in view, and which should be true and appropriate in all times and situations. They presented him the words: “And this, too, shall pass away.” How much it expresses! How chastening in the hour of pride! — how consoling in the depths of affliction! “And this, too, shall pass away.” And yet let us hope it is not quite true. Let us hope, rather, that by the best cultivation of the physical world, beneath and around us; and the intellectual and moral world within us, we shall secure an individual, social, and political prosperity and happiness, whose course shall be onward and upward, and which, while the earth endures, shall not pass away.”

Gramps

What does Slippery Treasure Mean?

What does Slippery Treasure Mean?

Question

Gramps,

In the Book of Mormon it mentions in several different places phrases (example Mormon 1:18) where the treasure or physical items became “slippery”. What does slippery mean?

Does it mean the items physically disappeared or did people steal them?

Patrick (more…)

Reformation or Restoration?

Reformation or Restoration?

Gramps, I love you always, however in the dictionary both words “Reformation” and “Restoration” almost explains the same meanings? Could you please elaborate?  How do I explain this to my families and friends?

LDS-Vegas (more…)

Hebrew and Greek Scholars

Hebrew and Greek Scholars

Are there any Hebrew and Biblical Greek Scholars in the Mormon church today? I know that Joseph Smith was really into studying Hebrew to get to know the Bible better.

Sara (more…)

I’m not happy with the way the missionaries are answering an investigators questions about salvation. How would you describe salvation?

I’m not happy with the way the missionaries are answering an investigators questions about salvation. How would you describe salvation?

Gramps,

Thank you, I have been going to the discussions of a woman my husband and I met at Church. The missionaries introduced her to us because she is Catholic and my husband was Catholic before he joined the church. She is a golden contact and accepts all that she hears. I am not happy with the way the missionaries have answered her questions about Salvation. In Mormon Doctrine there are three different kinds of salvation. In your opinion how would you describe salvation? They have told her that salvation is for everyone, and that is one of the definitions, but it seems more involved than that. I do not want to upset things, but it isn’t clear how they are explaining it. She is very bright, I know she would understand something more involved. Thank you,

Donna Tagliaferri

(more…)

What does “thrust in your sickle” mean?

What does “thrust in your sickle” mean?

Question

Dear Gramps,

In D&C 33:7 what does thrust in your sickle mean and in verse 9 laden with sheaves upon your back?

Tana

 

Answer

Dear Tana,

During His ministry here in mortality, the Lord used parables or stories to teach the people.   There are several reasons why He did this.  In the Bible Dictionary it states:  “We learn the reason for this method.  It was to veil the meaning.  The parable conveys to the hearer religious truth exactly in proportion to his faith and intelligence; to the dull and uninspired it is a mere story, “seeing they see not,” while to the instructed and spiritual it reveals the mysteries or secrets of the kingdom of heaven.”  He also used terms which were known to the people he was talking to so that they could better understand what he meant. Often he referred to olive trees and the process of making olive oil, which was something they were very familiar with.

The verses you quoted are an example of terms being used that members living in the mid 1800’s would have been familiar with and which would have helped them understand the point the Lord is making.  Prior to combines, grain was harvested by cutting it with a sickle, which is a curved hooklike blade mounted in a short handle.  The person using it would have to bend over and swing or thrust  it with full strength in order for it to cut the grain cleanly.  This was very difficult and back breaking work.  Once the grain was cut, it was bound into bundles or sheaves and then carried to where it would be threshed.  Threshing is the process of separating the grain from the stalk or straw.  They would carry as many sheaves of grain on their backs as they could to speed up the work and lessen the number of trips they needed to take.  Also the more sheaves they brought in the greater would be their harvest.  The fields of grain were ready to be harvested when the grain turned ‘white’.

Having been involved in this kind of work or at least observed it, the people realized that the grain was ready to be harvested or that many people were ready to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  In order to find these people and bring them into the fold, they would need to work diligently and with all their might, mind and strength.  The reward would be that they would bring many into the Gospel or be able to receive many sheaves of grain for their harvest.

The terms in these verses are used other places in the Doctrine and Covenants, as well as in talks given by the General Authorities in our day.  They are associated with the calling we each have to warn our neighbor and preach the Gospel to those living on the earth.

 

Gramps

What are cureloms and cumoms spoken of in the Book of Mormon?

What are cureloms and cumoms spoken of in the Book of Mormon?

Question

Hello Gramps,

I was studying this morning and I read about something that was interesting to me, though not terrible important.  What are cureloms and cumoms?  It’s in Ether chapter 9 verse 19.  I know they were animals, but I was wondering if there is anything further known about them?  Like what language the Jaradites were using. I see similarities in previous words in our doctrine.  Urim and Thummim the im is plural right?  Light(s) and Truth(s).  Also Elohim, God(s).  I’m just rambling now I guess, they are probably completely different languages.  Any input you may have would be great, always trying to learn more!

Sincerely,
Damon

 

Answer

Dear Damon,

The Urim and Thummim are both plural words from Hebrew meaning  lights and perfections.  There are several references to them in the Old Testament, The Book of Mormon and The Pearl of Great Price.  The brother of Jared used them in receiving revelations as recorded in Ether 3:23.

“And behold, these two stones will I give unto thee, and ye shall seal them up also with the things which ye shall write.”

These are the same ones that Joseph Smith received and used in the translation of the Book of Mormon.  In the Doctrines and Covenants 17, the Lord states:

“1 Behold, I say unto you, that you must rely upon my word, which if you do with full purpose of heart, you shall have a view of the plates, and also of the breastplate, the sword of Laban, the Urim and Thummim, which were given to the brother of Jared upon the mount, when he talked with the Lord face to face, and the miraculous directors which were given to Lehi while in the wilderness, on the borders of the Red Sea.”

Joseph Smith returned the Urim and Thummin to the angel along with the plates.  Joseph Smith also had and used a seer stone, which was not the the Urim and Thummim.  In Doctrines of Salvation volume 3, page 225, President Joseph Fielding Smith indicated that it was this seer stone that was on the altar of the Manti Temple when the building was dedicated and is now in the possession of the Church.

Elohim is also Hebrew and is plural for Eloah (God).

Evidently the animals that are referred to in Ether 9:19, cureloms and cumoms were unknown to the Nephites or at least to the Prophet Joseph Smith.  Concerning the identification of these animals, Hugh Nibley in his book, “Lehi in the Desert and the World of the Jaredites”  gives the following explanation:   ‘”They have plenty of iron, accarum and andanicum,’ says Marco Polo of the people of Kobian….but the fact is no one knows for sure what accarum and andanicum are.  Marco knew, of course but since the things didn’t exist in Europe there was no western word for them and so all he could do was to call them by their only names.  It is just so with the cureloms and cumoms of Ether 9:19.  These animals were unknown to the Nephites, and so Moroni leaves the words untranslated, or else though known to the Nephites, they are out of our experience so that our language has no name to call them by.  They were simply breeds of those ‘many other kinds of animals which were useful for the food of man.”‘

 

Gramps

What does it mean to “cast your bread upon the water?”

What does it mean to “cast your bread upon the water?”

Question

Dear Gramps,

Thanks for answering my last question.  In my deceased husbands patriarchal blessing it states cast your bread upon the water and it will return to you a hundred fold.  What does this mean?

Kate

 

Answer

Kate,

I assume that it is referring to Ecclesiastes 11: 1

 Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days.

Alma in the Book of Mormon explains this in Chapter 41:14-15

14 Therefore, my son, see that you are merciful unto your brethren; deal justly, judge righteously, and do good continually; and if ye do all these things then shall ye receive your reward; yea, ye shall have mercy restored unto you again; ye shall have justice restored unto you again; ye shall have a righteous judgment restored unto you again; and ye shall have good rewarded unto you again.

15 For that which ye do send out shall return unto you again, and be restored; therefore, the word restoration more fully condemneth the sinner, and justifieth him not at all.

Hopefully this helps you to understand the blessing a little better.

 

Gramps

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