The name of this servant was Gazelem, and the revelations he received were written on the Jaredite plates. 65. In 1828, Joseph Smith inherited these same sacred devices to translate the Book of Mormon by the gift and power of God. The Book of Mormon also has multiple individuals named “Helaman.” In all instances in this paper, except one, references to “Helaman” are to the son of Alma. The Lord’s hand pierces the veil, and touches the sixteen stones one by one. 66. He embarks on a quest to find the 16 Jaredite stones, but it is a trail filled with danger and challenges. which put it into his heart to search up these things of old; and Jared put it into the heart of Akish. And except they repent, I will destroy them from off the face of the earth. The brother of Jared’s great faith could keep nothing from him, and thus he received a sure knowledge of God. After Christ came, “he commanded that they should be made manifest”. The Lord asks him if he will believe the Lord’s words. and their wickedness and abominations. Why would the Lord reveal these things to Gazelem through his own stone and not the interpreters given to the brother of Jared? Part of the second quotation (discussed below), includes a prophecy that Alma considered to be fulfilled by Mosiah2’s use of the interpreters. It may be that Gazelem is a variant spelling of Gazelam and that Alma’s reference is to the Prophet Joseph Smith who did in fact bring forth part at least of the Ether record. Akish willingly led the coup, following the plans of Jared and his daughter: And Akish did administer unto them [his kindred and friends] the oaths See the bold italic text in the passages quoted at the beginning of the article. There he prayed to the Lord. if they did not repent, However these questions are answered, for the sake of this discussion it only matters that Mosiah2 was a seer who used the interpreters to translate the 24 Jaredite plates, then publish them. All research and opinions provided on this site are the sole responsibility of their respective authors, and should not be interpreted as the opinions of the Board, nor as official statements of LDS doctrine, belief or practice. if they did not repent, It is interesting to note that when Jesus called Simon Peter to the ministry, he said: “Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is, by interpretation, a seer, or a stone” (JST, John 1:42). He wrote: “Joseph Smith, who was Gazelam in the spirit world, was, and is, and will be in the progress of Eternity: — The Prince of Light. He then assumed the throne.40. In this second Jaredite quotation, the use of the connecting pronouns “they” and “their” — referring to those who indulge in secret combinations — suggests that it is a continuation of the first Jaredite quotation.32, And now my son, these directors were prepared Moroni abridged the Jaredite plates (or their earlier Nephite translation) and included it with his writings at the end of the Book of Mormon.34 His abridgement is relatively small, and includes many of his own thoughts. Ether 3:1. yea, their secret abominations have been brought out of darkness Complexities in the English Language of the Book of Mormon — 2015, Moses 1 in Its Ancient Context (#31 – 42), http://etherscave.blogspot.com/2014/10/a-fragment-from-unabridged-record-of.html, https://www.fairmormon.org/conference/august-2012/piercing-the-veil-temple-worship-in-the-lost-116-pages, http://www.josephsmithpapers.org/bc-jsp/content/jsp/images/content/library/pdf/chart7.pdf, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. The words revealed to Joseph were then dictated to his scribe.20 The seer stone that the Lord prepared for Gazelem was similarly a stone which would “shine forth in darkness unto light.”21, [Page 93]Thus the Jaredite record describes three different types of sacred stones which had divine functions: the sixteen stones that the brother of Jared asked the Lord to touch with his finger to give light to the Jaredite barges,22 the two stones that the Lord gave to the brother of Jared on the mount (the “interpreters” or “directors”),23 and the seer stone of Gazelem. Cart All. [Page 85]Abstract: Alma refers to Gazelem in his instructions to his son Helaman in Alma 37:23. — yea, work secret murders and abominations — — or the secret works of those people which have been destroyed — It is possible that none of the Jaredites did. … The [Page 89]critical text will therefore interpret the name Gazelem as the name of the servant, not the name of the stone.9. Royal Skousen, “Analysis of Textual Variants of the Book of Mormon, Part Four: Alma 21–55” (Provo, UT: FARMS, 2007), 2361–63. (5) The days of Coriantor ~28 generations from Jared: “many prophets … prophesied of great and marvelous things and cried repentance unto the people” (Ether 11:20–22). read more. It was “forbidden to come unto the children of men until after that [Christ] should be lifted up upon the cross. “I will prepare unto my servant Gazelem, a stone.” This may well be a play on words. (Alma 37:22). And for this cause did king Benjamin keep them, that they should not come unto the world”. for it hath been made known unto me that they are had among all people; Perhaps the sealed portion was buried with the interpreters and Mosiah1 found them together. Jesus instructs the brother of Jared to keep quiet about his revelations, but to write them down—in time his stones would be used to bring his words to light. HD. This article proposes that Gazelem was a Jaredite prophet who received revelations about the Jaredites through a seer stone.2 Considering this idea necessitates the discussion of several topics: Alma’s instructions to Helaman,3 the use of a seer stone, the “interpreters,” the Book of Ether, the secret combinations [Page 86]of the Jaredites, and “Gazelam” as a substitute name for Joseph Smith in the 1835 edition of the Doctrine and Covenants. He embarks on a quest to find the 16 Jaredite stones from the Book of Mormon, but … The exciting journey of 16 Stones comes to life in a time fraught with persecution. 16 Stones. Mormon made sure to inform us that “those secret oaths and covenants did not come forth unto Gadianton from the records which were delivered unto Helaman.”16. yea, and that ye preserve these directors. He told King Limhi: I can assuredly tell thee, O king, of a man that can translate the records; 26. that they by their secret plans did obtain kingdoms and great glory? Tvedtnes concluded, “The account of the stones used to provide light in the Jaredite barges fits rather well into a larger corpus of ancient and medieval literature.”  Of particular relevance is the way that shining stones were directly linked to Noah’s ark. 17. Shop 16 Stones [Blu-ray]  [US Import]. unto every nation which shall hereafter possess the land. Throughout this paper this individual will simply be referred to as “Alma.”. After quoting this prophecy, Alma pointed out its fulfillment to Helaman. 23. Alma referred to both instruments, quoted twice from the Jaredite plates, and noted the fulfillment of those prophecies as he taught his son Helaman about Jaredite history, their secret combinations, how those secret combinations were brought to the knowledge of the Nephites, and why the Nephites should reject such wickedness. [Page 103]How do these usages of the name reconcile with the idea of Gazelem as a Jaredite prophet? One line of reasoning is that our knowledge of the name Gazelem began when early Latter-Day Saints became familiar with the Book of Mormon. He points out that these prophecies and words he quotes have already been fulfilled “thus far,” including the use of the interpreters. For the righteous Jaredites (who presumably kept the records), knowledge of these specific conversations between Jared and his daughter, the secret meetings of Akish and his kindred, and the specific oaths they used would have required revelation from the Lord.42 The detailed record of their deeds corresponds with Alma’s description: when the Lord “saw that his people began to work in [Page 99]darkness,” he declared that he would “discover to (his people) the works of their brethren … all their secret works and abominations.”43, Close reading of the events that led to the first Jaredite secret combinations, coupled with a close look at Moroni’s commentary therein, leads to the dating of Gazelem’s lifetime sometime within the generations surrounding the reign of Jared and Akish.44. Ashurst-McGee conjectured that Gazelem may have been both Joseph’s spirit/temple name and also the name of his white seer stone, a theory that combines all these sources. He instructed him how to approach this subject — to readily teach the people to abhor secret combinations but not to reveal the particulars of the Jaredite oaths. “[T]here is no one in the land that is able to interpret the language or the engravings that are on the plates.”. Alma described the secretive subculture that overtook and extinguished the Jaredites with these words: “mysteries,” “works of darkness,” “secret works,” “murders,” “robbings,” “plunderings,” “wickedness,” “abominations,” “secret murders,” “secret abominations,” and “secret combinations.”13 This article will refer to them simply as secret combinations. of Joseph Smith, among other things. This article proposes that Gazelem was a Jaredite prophet who received revelations about the Jaredites through a seer stone.2 Considering this idea necessitates the discussion of several topics: Alma’s instructions to Helaman,3 the use of a seer stone, the “interpreters,” the Book of Ether, the secret The Lord speaks of Gazelem in the third person — “my servant Gazelem”49 — which includes the possibility that the Lord is speaking about Gazelem to someone else. — yea, all their murders and robbings and their plunderings It is a discussion of the past, not a prophecy of the future. Phelps reconstructed his funeral sermon in 1855. These quotations serve as a representative sample of their number and variety. Jared’s brother, astounded, falls to the ground. The Lord mercifully warned King Omer in a dream to flee before Akish could assassinate him.45 His family (and a few others who eventually joined them) fled to the seashore, to a place called Ablom.46 Perhaps Gazelem was a member of Omer’s household, who fled with him. Royal Skousen, The Book of Mormon: The Earliest Text (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009). Mosiah1, may have been guided to where the Brother of Jared buried them.58 Some of these questions may have been answered on the lost 116 pages.59 In any case, if Gazelem didn’t have access to the interpreters, it makes sense for the Lord to prepare a seer stone for him. 11. Of greater relevance to the Jaredite record, are the accounts linking shining stones to Noah’s ark. Joseph placed the seer stone into a hat and then put his face into the hat to look upon the stone in darkness. They were foreign to the Nephites until just before Alma’s grandson, Helaman2, became chief judge.15 Kishkumen and Gadianton formed a secret band with their own secret signs, words, laws, and covenants. Moroni alludes to Joseph Smith’s future translation of the gold plates in Mormon 8:16: “And blessed be him that shall bring this thing to light, for it shall be brought out of darkness unto light, according to the word of God; yea, it shall be brought out of the earth, and it shall shine forth out of darkness and come unto the knowledge of the people, and it shall be done by the power of God.”. We speak about cement since this stone box was created by using Nephite Cement. The Nephites may not have known about Mosiah1’s possession of this sealed record. The next line is the source for the words that Alma paraphrased to Helaman as he began his discussion of the 24 plates: “[T]he Lord said if they did not repent, they should be destroyed from off the face of the earth.”33 The last two lines are a prophecy that future nations would know of the Jaredite secret combinations. The Jaredite journey and 16 stones?Noah's Ark was 450 feet long and 75 feet wide, in comparison to 522 railroad stock... What about the Mormon wars in Missouri? The exciting journey of 16 Stones comes to life in a time fraught with persecution.When three friends go on a dangerous quest to find the 16 Jaredite stones, they must overcome the perilous challenges in their way and discover real faith in their journey. The same question persists among the saints today, also without a consensus. Within Alma’s discussion of the Jaredite secret combinations, he introduced the historical context of Gazelem: For behold, the Lord saw that his people began to work in darkness Therefore, the Lord spoke these words when the Jaredite secret combinations existed. If he did have them, why would he deposit them apart from the 24 plates? 1. Jared’s daughter was “expert” and inspired him in a plot to kill his father and obtain the kingdom. (Ether 8:8–9). yea, their secret works, their works of darkness, I will bring forth out of darkness unto light and also things shall be made known by them He embarks on a quest to find the 16 Jaredite stones, but it is a trail filled with danger and challenges. Is Gazelem the seer stone or the servant? Moroni appropriately placed the blame on the three individuals who initiated the secret combinations that plagued the Jaredites until their destruction: And it was the daughter of Jared And the things are called interpreters, Their proximity to the seashore may have reminded Omer’s people of the voyage their ancestors made across the sea. The discussion begins with the full context of Alma’s words to his son, Helaman: And now I will speak unto you concerning those twenty four plates, [Page 93] Thus the Jaredite record describes three different types of sacred stones which had divine functions: the sixteen stones that the brother of Jared asked the Lord to touch with his finger to give light to the Jaredite barges, 22 the two stones that the Lord gave to the brother of Jared on the mount (the “interpreters” or “directors”), 23 and the seer stone of Gazelem. a stone which shall shine forth in darkness unto light, He took the opportunity to teach Helaman certain doctrines relative to each one. (2) The reign of Com, ~22 generations from Jared: “there began to be robbers in the land, and they adopted the old plans and administered oaths after the manner of the ancients” (Ether 10:33). The New World location of the Jaredites and Nephites is a subject of disagreement among Mormons . The Jaredite breastplate that Joseph Smith found in the stone box at Cumorah is a very unique one. 2014. Account & Lists Account Returns & Orders. Thus, the Book of Mormon describes the prophetic use of both a seer stone and the interpreters as examples we can study to understand Joseph Smith’s experience in translating and receiving revelation. See Don Bradley, “Piercing the Veil: Temple Worship in the Lost 116 Pages,” FairMormon.org, 2012, https://www.fairmormon.org/conference/august-2012/piercing-the-veil-temple-worship-in-the-lost-116-pages. But a seer can know of things which are passed, In 1830s Missouri, James vows to protect the people of his village after it is attacked. and it is a gift from God. CC. He may have seen the language in Alma 37 as echoing his own experience with a seer stone, and adopted the name as a fitting substitute. In this context, it doesn’t seem that Alma is prophesying of the then future restoration to be accomplished by Joseph Smith in the latter-days, other than the quotation of the Lord that he would “bring to light all their secrets and abominations unto every nation which shall [Page 104]hereafter possess the land.”68 Interpreting Gazelem as a Jaredite prophet does not diminish Joseph Smith’s foreordained calling or his important work of translating the Book of Mormon. yea, their secret works, their works of darkness, (Mosiah 8:13). See also Alma 63:12. The one exception, noted hereafter as Helaman2, is to Alma’s grandson. The book does tell stories of crimes committed by people who had made oaths to defend each other (Ether 8:13-16, Ether 9:5-6). Alma 37:23. 63. See also: Stan Spencer, “Reflections of Urim” 187–207. He apparently felt that the person “Gazelem” was Mosiah II and that it was relevant that he translated with the two seer stones bound in a metal bow. 44. In 1830s Missouri, James will stop at nothing to protect his people after they are attacked. Hello Select your address All Hello, Sign in. 32. The exciting journey of faith in16 Stones comes to life in a time fraught with persecution. and things which is not known shall be made known by them, With the help of two friends, they find peace in the face of turmoil and faith in the face of doubt. 3 (1969): 69–83. Select Your Cookie Preferences. The phrase “Jaredite plates” is used as a substitute name for the record of the Jaredites: “the twenty and four plates which were found by the people of Limhi, which is called the Book of Ether” (Ether 1:2). The Lord would utterly destroy them, and “bring forth another people to possess the land … they did reject all the words of the prophets because of their secret society and wicked abominations.”, 48. Of Wilford Woodruff, it was written: “In his possession he had many relics, among which was the seer stone, known as ‘Gazelem,’ which was shown of the Lord to the Prophet Joseph Smith.”, In 1855, approximately 11 years after the funeral of Joseph Smith, William W. Phelps wrote down the sermon he gave on that occasion, according to his memory. Did Gazelem have access to the interpreters? The word “Jaredite” is never used in the Book of Mormon but is used in this article. The word “directors” was replaced with “interpreters” in the 1920 LDS edition of the Book of Mormon. Cement is not “Stone” as many Mesoamerican advocates claim. ‘Tis so; and who can dispute it?”, Brigham Young and Willard Richards included an index to the 1841 edition of the Book of Mormon which had the entry: “Gazelem, a stone, (secret).”. He be commanded his father and obtain the kingdom plates that Limhi found would have. Brad Johnson, Aubrey Reynolds, Mason D. 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