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1 Nephi 14: 6

“Therefore, wo be unto the Gentiles if it so be that they harden their hearts against the Lamb of God.” 
Interestingly, rather than shouting out in rejoicing that all who repent will escape punishment, the angel instead pronounces a “wo” upon the gentiles. It is almost as if the future of the gentile conduct inspires nothing but pessimism for the angel. It inspires another warning and condemnation for the gentiles who, having received the Book of Mormon and other sacred writings, are then fully responsible to repent.

Notice that the relationship is between the “Lamb of God” and the gentiles. It is not between the gentiles and “leaders” or “prophets” or “administrators” or “general authorities” or even messengers. It is between the gentiles and “the Lamb of God.” 

Why that specific a relationship? Why is it exclusively between the individual and Christ? 

Read again the description of the Telestial folk who return “worlds without end” to their condemnation: “And the glory of the telestial is one, even as the glory of the stars is one; for as one star differs from another star in glory, even so differs one from another in glory in the telestial world; For these are they who are of Paul, and of Apollos, and of Cephas.  These are they who say they are some of one and some of another—some of Christ and some of John, and some of Moses, and some of Elias, and some of Esaias, and some of Isaiah, and some of Enoch; But received not the gospel, neither the testimony of Jesus, neither the prophets, neither the everlasting covenant.”  (D&C 76: 98-101.)

From what you’ve now learned can you see how one might follow even a true messenger but fail to gain “the testimony of Jesus?”

Can you now understand why, although you have followed messengers, you may have not in fact received the “everlasting covenant?”

The Temple is a type and shadow. It is a symbol of the real thing, but it is not the real thing. The “everlasting covenant” is taught there. But to gain it you must receive it through “the testimony of Jesus.” Is this “testimony of Jesus” yours?  Of is it rather Jesus testifying to you? If it is He testifying to you, then what must His testimony be?

In light of that does it mean then to “harden your hearts against the Lamb of God?” As you answer that, keep in mind His formula in D&C 93: 1: “Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am.” Here Christ is but reiterating the message of the Book of Mormon.

Then how do you repent? I was asked about idolatry among the Saints. Anything that separates you from the Lamb of God is an idol. Cast it aside and come to Him. Why we have idols between us and the Lord is as different as one person is from another. Almost without exception, it comes as a result of a false tradition handed down. Your false traditions are based on your life’s experiences while another’s false traditions are based on theirs. No matter what they are or how they were acquired, whatever separates Christ from you must be set aside. Come to HIM. Not to me or any other. Only He can save you.

No wonder that after making great promises to the gentiles, if they will but repent, the angel cries out “wo be unto the Gentiles!” They won’t receive: 1) the Gospel, neither 2) the testimony of Jesus, neither 3) the prophets sent to warn them and the message given to them, neither 4) the everlasting covenant offered to them.

Will you?

1 Nephi 14: 5

“And it came to pass that the angel spake unto me, Nephi, saying: Thou hast beheld that if the Gentiles repent it shall be well with them; and thou also knowest concerning the covenants of the Lord unto the house of Israel; and thou also hast heard that whoso repenteth not must perish.”
Again a reminder that Nephi’s teachings come from an angel. He’s not on his own errand in making these things known. I doubt a person of good faith and common sense would ever dare to make declarations as Nephi does unless he had received the message from such a source. Joseph put it this way: “None but fools will trifle with the souls of men. How vain and trifling have been our spirits, our conferences, our councils, our meetings, our private as well as public conversations—too low, too mean, too vulgar, too condescending for the dignified characters of the called and chosen of God, according to the purposes of His will, from before the foundation of the world!”  (DHC Vol 3, pp. 295-96.)  Nephi was no fool. He wanted us to understand these teachings came from a higher source, and not man’s wisdom. Indeed, what man can open up the mysteries that have remained hidden? Either God makes them known or they remain a mystery!
I believe the wisest course would have been for all our teachers, from Joseph till today, to either declare what the Lord and His angels have made known to them or to remain silent. Had that been the practice our libraries would undoubtedly be sparse. But what few books that remained would be the “best books” worthy of study. (D&C 88: 118.) I understand that not all have faith. But teachers do a profound disservice whenever they pontificate about something they do not understand. No-one is an “authority” who has not received intelligence from the Lord or His angels. They are simply trying to be helpful, or seeking to magnify a calling, but they are not on His errand. Alas, the full extent of this problem cannot be known. All those who have spoken in His name, but without His instruction and direction, have indeed taken His name in vain. This will be a great burden for those who have chosen to use His name in violation of a fundamental commandment to the contrary. (Exo. 20: 7.)
The happy news is that “if the Gentiles repent”– is always a condition for moving forward. We can’t get through carrying on our backs the false, vain and foolish traditions men have handed to us. We must lay them down. Unless we do so we wind up exactly at the point when this Dispensation began: suffering under doctrine which consists merely of the commandments of men, having a form of godliness without power. (JS-H 1: 19.)
What must gentiles do to “repent?” All gentiles, including those who have accepted the Restoration and who claim to believe the Book of Mormon… What must they do? To answer that look again carefully at the Lord’s condemnation of us: 

“And your minds in times past have been darkened because of unbelief, and because you have treated lightly the things you have received— Which vanity and unbelief have brought the whole church under condemnation.  And this condemnation resteth upon the children of Zion, even all.  And they shall remain under this condemnation until they repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon and the former commandments which I have given them, not only to say, but to do according to that which I have written—That they may bring forth fruit meet for their Father’s kingdom; otherwise there remaineth a scourge and judgment to be poured out upon the children of Zion.” (D&C 84: 54-58.)

Then Nephi’s angel-minister reminds Nephi of two different thoughts: 1) There are covenants with the house of Israel. So they will be remembered.  2) Whoever repents will find things will be well. Nephi was told: “thou also knowest concerning the covenants of the Lord unto the house of Israel; and thou also hast heard that whoso repenteth not must perish.” The result is that even though the gentiles are not given a covenant status, they are nonetheless included within the promise that it is well with whoever should repent. Accordingly, if they will repent, the gentiles will not perish but will have eternal life.
How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of those who declare that God reigneth and will deliver His people. How merciful it is that the Lord God will accept all those as His people who will repent and come unto Him.

Comment Error

Blogger is having a problem with their comments – apparently a worldwide problem.  It has been reported to them.  I will save the comments that come in and not post them until they fix the problem.  If your comment has come to me and I have moderated it and it has gone on into hyper-space, I will repost it by copy and paste. 

Keep the comments coming.  Blogger should have it fixed soon, I hope.

Thanks

CM

1 Nephi 14: 3-4

 
“And that great pit, which hath been digged for them by that great and abominable church, which was founded by the devil and his children, that he might lead away the souls of men down to hell—yea, that great pit which hath been digged for the destruction of men shall be filled by those who digged it, unto their utter destruction, saith the Lamb of God; not the destruction of the soul, save it be the casting of it into that hell which hath no end.  For behold, this is according to the captivity of the devil, and also according to the justice of God, upon all those who will work wickedness and abomination before him.”
 
Now I wish Nephi would only prophecy smooth things to us. (Isa. 30: 10.) But once again here we find him being negative. He needs to repent or he’s going to lose readers.
 
The “great pit” is an interesting symbol. Remember when the brothers sought to kill Joseph? Before they sold him into slavery, they put him into a pit in which there was no water. (Gen. 37: 23-24.) They stripped him of his sacred garment – not of “many colors” but of “sacred markings.” Having stripped him of the garment that belonged to the heir, and assured him of his exaltation, they cast him into a pit without water. He descended, as the damned, into the waterless pit. This pit symbolizes the damned souls in spirit prison who, without deliverance from the waters of baptism, are left to suffer. (See Zech. 9: 12.) Joseph’s pit without water is a reminder of how the ordinances that pass us through the water are the means of deliverance. (Hence the Red Sea and rebirth of Israel as they emerged from Egypt.) Christ also alluded to this in His parable of Lazarus, when the torment could only be cooled by covenantal water. (Luke 16: 24.)
 
Well the abominable church offers ordinances, but they leave people in a pit, without redemption and in need of authoritative washing to cleanse from sin. The devil and his children are the founders of this great and abominable order. They seek to cheat mankind of salvation. If they can cause even a little error that robs power from the ordinances performed, they can keep mankind captive. For death and hell will claim all those who have not been redeemed from the awful pit.

How unkind would it be to fail to warn people of this risk they face? How unkind would it be to allow them to proceed into the afterlife unprepared, uncleansed, and unredeemed? Which would be better, to stay silent while the idolatry of the Latter-day Saints robs them of redemption, or to speak up and warn? Men and institutions will never redeem a man. Idolizing an institution will damn every participant. Idolizing men will damn those false religionists. In the Latter-day Saint community we have two groups: Those who are humble and follow Christ, but who are taught by the precepts of men and err. (2 Nephi 28: 14.)  And the rest are those who follow men and worship the institution and proclaim “All is well” with their faith. For the first group there is hope, so long as they are able to find the truth. (D&C 123: 12.)  For the rest, they will become heirs of this prophecy of Nephi’s, all the while assuring one another that the odds are they are going to be exalted.

 
The goal in every generation is to become Zion. To do that you must have a return of a Patriarchal head, as in Enoch’s day or in Melchizedek’s day, wherein they organized again after the pattern of heaven. A family. One. Where all things are in common because there is a loving environment where all are of equal worth. No one aspires to be a leader, but all become sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, husbands and wives where the care of all is as natural as family affection for one another.
 
The devil and his children seek to fragment, to divide, and to keep mankind from organizing into a family where the hearts of fathers are with the children and the hearts of children are toward their fathers. When you divide up into separate clans or divided families, while still paying tribute to the honored position of “family life” among the divided clans and families, you still have only a form of godliness without any power. This is the goal of the devil. It will prevent Zion from ever being brought again. It will leave people unorganized and unprepared to assume a place in the government of God, which is His eternal and singular extended family, where all are one.
 
The references to the “hell that hath no end” is that same play on words that is defined in D&C 19: 5-12.  It is a place of torment, where people suffer as in the Telestial Kingdom, or the world in which you presently reside (to paraphrase the Endowment). How long will people endure such an experience? Until they repent.  (D&C 76: 99-101.) What if they do not repent? They will suffer, worlds without end. (D&C 76: 109-112.)
 
All of this according to “the justice of God.”
 
Notice that people arrive here because of the “abominable church” that will always be ready to preach to you false, vain and foolish doctrines. They will offer anything to distract you and keep you from seeing the Lord “bring again Zion.” They will use the words of Zion to preach a false faith. They are “abominable” because their false teachings are clothed in the vocabulary of truth.
 
At that day even the very elect will be the targets of deception. Those claiming falsely to be “prophets” will arise and lead away many. They will show great wonders, spacious and glorious buildings, feats of charity and good will. But the elect will not be deceived, though they may be troubled. (JS-M 1: 22-25.) They will not be deceived because they treasure up His words. They know His voice, recognize when it speaks, and will use it to keep them from deception. They will have entertained angels, who will have gathered them, and will be waiting for His return. (JS-M 1: 37.)
 
Now, indeed, is the great day of Satan’s power; who rules from the rivers to the ends of the earth and there are none to molest him or make him afraid. We look for the day when, again, a voice will cry out in the wilderness saying to walk in the strait path of the Lord. It would be interesting if that should happen to see who would recognize it, and who would want to know instead “by what authority” such a voice cries out.
 
Well, there’s more to the verse than this. Ask yourself:
-Why is it a “great pit which hath been digged for the destruction of men?”
-Who is it that “shall fill” it?
-What does “utter destruction” mean?
-What does the phrase “not the destruction of the soul, save it be the casting of it into that hell which hath no end” refer to?
-Why is this “according to the captivity of the devil?”
-Why is this “also according to the justice of God, upon all those who will work wickedness and abomination before him?”
 
It is an interesting insight into the patience of God, the eternal purposes of God, and the endless, even “worlds without end” which will be provided for all those who will not repent. What a vast, eternal work God has set about to accomplish!  Imagine bringing to pass the immortality and eternal life of man! What an endless process such a work may entail! Why would anyone procrastinate the day of their repentance?

1 Nephi 14: 1-2

“And it shall come to pass, that if the Gentiles shall hearken unto the Lamb of God in that day that he shall manifest himself unto them in word, and also in power, in very deed, unto the taking away of their stumbling blocks— And harden not their hearts against the Lamb of God, they shall be numbered among the seed of thy father; yea, they shall be numbered among the house of Israel; and they shall be a blessed people upon the promised land forever; they shall be no more brought down into captivity; and the house of Israel shall no more be confounded.” 

I’ve referred to these verses before. When Elder Mark E. Peterson claimed the Lord would not visit with “gentiles” but only with the house of Israel relying upon 3 Nephi 15: 23, it was my view that the 3rd Nephi statement of Christ was as to His immediate post-resurrection appearances to the various scattered lost tribes. He had no commission from the Father to appear to the gentiles in that time frame. These verses are about a different, much later time. These are speaking of the time when the Book of Mormon (record of the Nephties) would come into the possession of the gentiles. The gentiles will, if they hearken to the “Lamb of God IN THAT DAY,” have the Lamb manifest Himself to them. Today is THAT DAY. It is now when the gentiles are promised He will manifest Himself to us, in “word” and in “power” and “in very deed.” 

His assignment immediately post-resurrection was to visit with each of the still organized, prophet-led, but scattered children of Israel. They had been put into the “nethermost” parts of the earth. He went to and visited with each of them serially. He did not visit with gentiles during that ministry.
But in the time following the publication of the Book of Mormon, and as part of removing the stumbling blocks of the gentiles, He is to visit the gentiles “in word” and “in power” and “in deed” so that it will “take away their stumbling blocks.”

What does it mean to stumble? What is a “stumbling block?”  What kinds of things would impede you from walking back to the presence of God? How will Christ’s ministry in “word, power and deed” to gentiles remove these things?

It is AFTER the ministry of “word, power and deed” when the stumbling blocks are removed, that the gentiles are then “numbered among the seed of thy father.” Note that they are not numbered among other branches of Israel. Note that they are not sealed to their fathers and made Ephriamites descended from other branches. They are to be “numbered among the seed of thy father” or counted as part of Lehi’s seed. They are, in short, to be sealed to Lehi as their Patriarch and father. It is necessary to understand the doctrine discussed in this post.
This was always a part of the Gospel. Joseph Smith understood it and practiced it. Today we think it was an oddity that got corrected at the time of Wilford Woodruff.  However, if you read the Book of Abraham you realize that the adoption of people into an inheritance was always the manner the Celestial Kingdom was to be organized here. Look at the Lord’s discussion/explanation to Abraham found in Abraham 2: 8-11:

“My name is Jehovah, and I know the end from the beginning; therefore my hand shall be over thee. And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee above measure, and make thy name great among all nations, and thou shalt be a blessing unto thy seed after thee, that in their hands they shall bear this ministry and Priesthood unto all nations; And I will bless them through thy name; for as many as receive this Gospel shall be called after thy name, and shall be accounted thy seed, and shall rise up and bless thee, as their father;  And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse them that curse thee; and in thee (that is, in thy Priesthood) and in thy seed (that is, thy Priesthood), for I give unto thee a promise that this right shall continue in thee, and in thy seed after thee (that is to say, the literal seed, or the seed of the body) shall all the families of the earth be blessed, even with the blessings of the Gospel, which are the blessings of salvation, even of life eternal.”
Those who receive the same priesthood (Patriarchal) from the time of Abraham forward become his (Abraham’s) seed. Therefore they become his (Abraham’s) inheritance and posterity, sealed to him as a part of his family.

This was the priesthood that was bestowed upon Joseph Smith, as a result of which he received the promises of Abraham. While looking for references to Abraham throughout Section 132 is interesting, I’ll just take an excerpt. [PLEASE forget about plural wives while you read this. Think only about Patriarchal Priesthood and the authority which was with Abraham and renewed in Joseph. It is that issue that I want to focus, and not to become side-tracked on plural marriage. At some point I’ll spend a few weeks on that side issue. NOT NOW.] So here is Section 132: 28-32:

“I am the Lord thy God, and will give unto thee the law of my Holy Priesthood, as was ordained by me and my Father before the world was. Abraham received all things, whatsoever he received, by revelation and commandment, by my word, saith the Lord, and hath entered into his exaltation and sitteth upon his throne. Abraham received promises concerning his seed, and of the fruit of his loins—from whose loins ye are, namely, my servant Joseph—which were to continue so long as they were in the world; and as touching Abraham and his seed, out of the world they should continue; both in the world and out of the world should they continue as innumerable as the stars; or, if ye were to count the sand upon the seashore ye could not number them.This promise is yours also, because ye are of Abraham, and the promise was made unto Abraham; and by this law is the continuation of the works of my Father, wherein he glorifieth himself. Go ye, therefore, and do the works of Abraham; enter ye into my law and ye shall be saved.”
Exaltation came through this priesthood, which linked together the fathers and the children of promise.The priestly sealing together of Patriarchs into a family that will endure as the government in heaven was the object of the Gospel in every generation. We are returning, at the end, to what it was at the beginning. However, the way in which it was to occur was “by my word” and “by revelation and commandment” so that the person knows he is to have a part in the Father’s kingdom. It was not to be merely a distant expectation, uncertain in origin and doubtful in authority. It was to be certain, not doubtful: “The more sure word of prophecy means a man’s knowing that he is sealed up unto eternal life, by revelation and the spirit of prophecy, through the power of the Holy Priesthood.” (D&C 131: 5.) It is directly connected with this Patriarchal Priesthood, the same authority which belonged to Abraham, the possession of which by any man makes him the seed of Abraham.
Returning to the subject of “remnant” and “gentiles,” the Book of Mormon prophecies still do not refer to the latter-day gentiles as anything other than “gentiles” even when they are “numbered among the seed of Lehi.” Gentiles retain in prophecy their identification with “gentiles” although they are adopted as Lehi’s seed. Hence Joseph Smith’s reference in the Kirtland Temple dedicatory prayer to the Latter-day Saints as “gentiles” by identity. (D&C 109: 60.)  Whenever a gentile manages to acquire this adoption, they do not become identified as the “remnant” as a result. Instead, they become heirs to share in the promised blessings, but as “gentiles.” They will get to assist the “remnant” but as “gentiles” not as the “remnant.” Still, those who are adopted as Lehi’s seed inherit with the “remnant” the Lord’s promises. But they are nevertheless called in prophecy “gentiles” throughout.

1 Nephi 13: 42

1 Nephi 13: 42:

“And the time cometh that he shall manifest himself unto all nations, both unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles; and after he has manifested himself unto the Jews and also unto the Gentiles, then he shall manifest himself unto the Gentiles and also unto the Jews, and the last shall be first, and the first shall be last.”



Christ showed Himself to the Jews during His mortal ministry.


He showed Himself to the Nephites after His resurrection.


He visited others, who have also kept records of His appearances to them. The full extent of the records that have been kept has not become apparent to us yet.  Nephi would report in the final summation of his lifelong ministry the following about the many records to come forth:


“Wherefore, because that ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written. For I command all men, both in the east and in the west, and in the north, and in the south, and in the islands of the sea, that they shall write the words which I speak unto them; for out of the books which shall be written I will judge the world, every man according to their works, according to that which is written. For behold, I shall speak unto the Jews and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the Nephites and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto the other tribes of the house of Israel, which I have led away, and they shall write it; and I shall also speak unto all nations of the earth and they shall write it. And it shall come to pass that the Jews shall have the words of the Nephites, and the Nephites shall have the words of the Jews; and the Nephites and the Jews shall have the words of the lost tribes of Israel; and the lost tribes of Israel shall have the words of the Nephites and the Jews. And it shall come to pass that my people, which are of the house of Israel, shall be gathered home unto the lands of their possessions; and my word also shall be gathered in  one. And I will show unto them that fight against my word and against my people, who are of the house of Israel, that I am God, and that I covenanted with Abraham that I would remember his seed forever.” (2 Nephi 29: 10-14.)


The “lost tribes of Israel” are plural. However many the number may be, each kept records and they are to come into our possession at some point in fulfillment of this prophetic promise.


All of this was foreseen by Zenos even before Isaiah. Zenos tells us the lost tribes of Israel will be spread all about, into the “nethermost” parts of the earth: “And these will I place in the nethermost part of my vineyard, whithersoever I will, it mattereth not unto thee; and I do it that I may preserve unto myself the natural branches of the tree; and also, that I may lay up fruit thereof against the season, unto myself; for it grieveth me that I should lose this tree and the fruit thereof. And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard went his way, and hid the natural branches of the tame olive-tree in the nethermost parts of the vineyard, some in one and some in another, according to his will and pleasure.”  (Jacob 5: 13-14.)


Where is “nethermost?” How many were there?


When Christ informed the Nephites of His post-resurrection ministry, He informed them He would be visiting the various Israelite people:  “But now I go unto the Father, and also to show myself unto the lost tribes of Israel, for they are not lost unto the Father, for he knoweth whither he hath taken them.”  (3 Nephi 17: 4.) He visited the Nephites. They were an organized body, led by prophets, expecting His birth and death. There were other organized believers who also looked for His coming. What their prophets told them, and how they understood His ministry will be in their records. What He taught them when He visited with them after His resurrection will also be in their records. It is likely to mirror the Nephite experience and record. However, it is undoubtedly true that we will again learn how involved a Redeemer He has been. Should we already realize that from what we’ve been given?  We ought to welcome His direct ministry among us. Somehow we find His intimate involvement hard to comprehend. We think, if someone should acknowledge they have seen Him, that such a person is somehow special, different, or unique. It ought to be commonplace.


In the unfolding ministry of the Lord, the Jews were the first, but will be the last, to receive again His ministry. The gentiles have been given the Gospel. The remnant will be receiving it from them – soon.

Fourth

It’s the Fourth (third, actually, but because we’re in Utah it gets celebrated early so as to keep the Sabbath, or something).  Therefore my wife, in her wisdom has determined to only put up one post–I’m adding this as an aside.
I had a couple of off-blog comments addressed to me that haven’t been put up.  But to make certain that the matter is clear to those involved:  Rest assured I take no offense at criticism.  It really isn’t important if folks like, dislike or are otherwise disposed toward me.  Largely I’m irrelevant.  Some of the things I have to say are quite important, in my view.  But they derive their importance from the subject, not from me.
I probably deserve more personal criticism than I will ever receive.  Therefore I do not and have not taken any offense at anything said to me on or off the blog.  Do not trouble yourself for a moment at the idea that you’ve offended me; because you certainly haven’t.
I’m a trial lawyer.  That means someone is hired (and paid quite well) to oppose everything I do, everything I write, and every argument I make as part of my daily work.  Criticism is always with me whenever I am working.  So to be criticized over ideas I present is no more offensive than to have a spirited argument in a case at work.  I have thick skin and a tolerance for being criticized.  Since I took no offense I don’t feel the need to forgive, but nevertheless if forgiveness is wanted it is freely given.

One other thought:  I think there are a number of you that are really seeing the Book of Mormon in its true light.  That is joyful for me.  Such a treasure; so unused; so little understood.  To have it become treasured by some of you for the first time is truly a delight for me.  Thank you.

1 Nephi 13: 40-41

1 Nephi 13: 40-41:

“And the angel spake unto me, saying: These last records, which thou hast seen among the Gentiles, shall establish the truth of the first, which are of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them; and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world; and that all men must come unto him, or they cannot be saved. And they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb; and the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed, as well as in the records of the twelve apostles of the Lamb; wherefore they both shall be established in one; for there is one God and one Shepherd over all the earth.”
 
The “books” that the prior verse referred to are now called “records” by the angel. The “records” will be among and originate from the gentiles. The purpose of the “records” is to establish the truth of the original records of “the twelve apostles of the Lamb.” The purpose of the whole is to confirm the reality of Christ in His mortal ministry. Christ, who came to earth, lived and died as a mortal, was the Savior of mankind. The New Testament record confirming His ministry, sacrifice and resurrection is true! Their testimonies of Christ are reliable. He is our Savior and our God!
 
The “plain and precious” things that got removed will be returned to us.  I’ve spoken of that before and won’t repeat it again here. But the “plain and precious” things will become known to “all kindreds, tongues and people” again. 
 
I was thinking about what was required for Joseph Smith to be able to get a message out in his day. He needed a printing press, which he could not afford. He needed Martin Harris to give a $3,000 note backed by a mortgage on his home to motivate the printer to make the first printings of the Book of Mormon. He needed an army of disciples to distribute the material on foot or horseback. He needed an infrastructure that went well beyond his individual means. Today Joseph would need a keyboard and an internet connection. He could speak to more people in a few minutes, across a wider swath of the globe, as a single individual acting alone, than he was able to speak to through an army of followers who uprooted their lives to follow his teachings.
 
We continue to make great sacrifices in purse and time to send missionaries throughout the world even today. In truth, if Joseph Smith had access to the internet he could have restored more things to more people in less time than has been done from 1830 to the present. It makes you wonder – if the truth were not packaged, marketed, focus-grouped through approved language, and accompanied by supporting photos and digital graphics – if the truth were simply spoken plainly, would it have any effect? Does it need an infrastructure of trained professional marketing to accompany it? Does it need a slick website to attract His sheep? Is His voice enough?
 
What if someone were to declare “that all men must come unto the Lamb of God, who is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world, or they cannot be saved.” What if they were to declare in sober words that the Lamb of God lives still! That He had appeared to and spoken with the one making the declaration.  Would there yet be those who would hear and repent?
 
Would that message be drowned out by the chorus of foolish and vain things being spoken in the name of Jesus Christ by those who, despite having real intent and sincere desire, have not been given power to declare His words? Would such a message only be another bit of entertainment for the bored and curious to give but passing notice? Could the world be given such a message and warned, but fail to see what it is they are being offered for one last time before the harvest is to begin? If so, would we notice?
The verse raises interesting options for the Lord to fulfill His promises in ways which have only come into existence in the last few years.  He certainly does have the ability to “hasten His work” when He chooses. (D&C 88: 73.)
 
Should someone choose to come, the verse reports: “they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb; and the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed, as well as in the records of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.” What does that include? Authoritative baptism? Authoritative bestowal of the gift of the Holy Ghost? Prophecy?  Revelation? The “rock” of seership we discussed a few days ago? How must they come?  The Book of Mormon suggests it must be through the gate of revelation.  (Moroni 10: 4-5.)  Without revelation you cannot obtain the testimony of Jesus; which is the spirit of prophecy. (Rev. 19: 10.) Or, in other words, unless you find prophets who can bear testimony of Him, you have not yet found the means for salvation. This becomes quite interesting and important. Very frank about the conditions for salvation.
 
Then the promise is that all these witnesses, all these records, and all these disciples are to become “one.”  “[T]hey both (records) shall be established in one; for there is one God and one Shepherd over all the earth” who in turn makes people to be “one” as well. A great assembly, a general congregation and Church of the Firstborn.
 
How great a promise has been offered to those who will receive! What good, however, is it to offer a gift if the one to whom it is offered refuses to accept? (D&C 88: 33.)

1 Nephi 13: 39

 
“And after it had come forth unto them I beheld other books, which came forth by the power of the Lamb, from the Gentiles unto them, unto the convincing of the Gentiles and the remnant of the seed of my brethren, and also the Jews who were scattered upon all the face of the earth, that the records of the prophets and of the twelve apostles of the Lamb are true.”
 
We know the New Testament will come forth first and get into the hands of the “remnant” of the promised people. It will get into their hands BEFORE some other materials will also come forth.
 
When did that happen? Was it something that occurred before the publication of the Book of Mormon in 1830? Which native tribes received copies of the New Testament before the “other books” came forward? What are these “other books” referred to here? They “came forth by the power of the Lamb” but came “after” the New Testament was given to the “remnant.” What books have come forth “by the power of the Lamb” to your knowledge? Apart from the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Book of Moses, Book of Abraham and Joseph Smith History and Matthew, what other books would qualify? Did all these come after the “remnant” had first received the New Testament “book of the Lamb of God?”
 
The effect of the “other books” will be to “convince” the gentiles as well as “the remnant of the seed of my brethren” of the truth of the New Testament and “records of the prophets.” Have the gentiles become convinced? Have the “remnant” become convinced?  Have the Jews who were scattered upon all the face of the earth become convinced? Are they convinced of the truth of “the records of the prophets” even if they are not yet convinced of the truth of the “twelve apostles of the Lamb?”
 
Is this a serial progression? That is, does it come and convince the gentiles first?  Then, having convinced them, does it next convince the “remnant?” Then, after having convinced both the gentiles and the “remnant,” does it in turn convince the scattered Jews? If serial, what stage of the unfolding of these events is happening now? What is needed before the phase would be completed and the next one begin?
What does it mean that “other books” will come forth? What kinds of “books” would they be? Who would have written them? Why would they come “by the power of the Lamb” only to meet the criteria? Is a good commentary written by CES among the promised “books” coming forward? What about the Ensign?
 
How would you be able to recognize a book coming “by the power of the Lamb” in fulfillment of this promise? Will these “books” be recognized as scripture? Do they include discoveries at Qumran and Nag Hammadi? Was Hugh Nibley working on such projects, and if so, was he among those in whom the “power of the Lamb” was working?
This verse has potential for broad application. It raises questions worth contemplating and may surprise you at some of the issues it requires us to confront. Such are the Lord’s dealings with mankind in every generation. We are  made prayerful because He gives us great subjects with which to grapple.