Genesis 28:10-19The Vision of Jacob’s Ladder at BethelTemples are to us what Bethel was to Jacob (“Temples – The Gates to Heaven,”Ensign, March, 1971, 16).The Prophet Joseph Smith said, speaking of Paul’s comment about one who was caught up to the third kingdom (II Cor. 12:2), “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” (Teachings, 304-5).
HeavenJacob’s LadderThere is a spiritual ladder6. Celestial Kingdomreaching from earth to5. Keeping the Commandmentsheaven for us all. The same4. Temple Marriagesteps are required of every-3. Receiving the Priesthoodone. We cannot skip any of2. Baptism and Confirmation the steps. Each must be1. Birth taken in order.Jacob’s dream helps us understand the role that saving ordinances play in helping man achieve exaltation within the celestial kingdom.Earth
Doctrine & Covenants 131:1-4The Celestial Kingdom is divided into three levels:ExaltationEternal Life, GodhoodCelestial Marriage___________________________________EndowmentWashing and Anointings___________________________________Gift of the Holy GhostBaptismWe are not told the names of the bottom two levels, however, the highest level is called exaltation or eternal life. It is only in this level that the children of God can obtain Godhood (Doctrine & Covenants 132:7-17, 29, 37).The ordinances are like the rungs of a ladder that lead to exaltation.
ElderBoyd K. Packer has observed that the root word for ordinance is order. He notes that in the Oxford English Dictionary, the first definition of order is, “arrangement in sequence or proper relative position.” He then concludes that an ordinance is a “ceremony by which things are put in proper order” (The Holy Temple, 1994, 144-45).It follows, then, that the saving ordinances of both the Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthood place in proper sequence what God’s children must do in order to come into a proper relationship with God and obtain the fullness of God’s Kingdom including Godhood.
Temple OrdinancesWashingsandEndowmentMarriageand GodhoodAnointing'sSealingStep #1Step#2Step#3Anointing 1. obedience Moses 1:39Means 2. sacrificeConsecration 3. Consecration Union between you andyour spouse.Entered singularly I will do everything to save my childrenin thisGodis firstlifeor in the next.Moses1:39,I put myself andmy problems behind.
The Heavenly Triangle
Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob – married relatives. Abraham married Sarah, who was his niece; Isaac married Rebekah, who was his first cousin once removed; and Jacob married Leah and Rachel, who were his first cousins.Genesis 29Jacob, the model of persistence!“Baby Wars”Leah - 4Rachel- 0Leah - 4Rachel- 2Leah - 6Rachel- 2Leah - 8Rachel- 2Leah - 8Rachel- 4
Each child born to Jacob was given a name which reflected the feelings of his parents.There was a tremendous competitive spirit between the wives.Being able to bear a male child for their husband was a great honor.Rachel apparently was very sad that she did not have a child until later in her life. When she finally bore a son the name she gave him indicated her feeling for him and the hope she had in the future.The crowning jewel for a woman was to bear children, it was a scab on her if she couldn’t.The crowning jewel today for a woman should be to bear children!
MotherNameMeaningReason for NameLeah Reuben See a sonJoyfor having a son.Leah Simeon Hearing Because the Lord heard she was hated.Leah Levi Joined“This time will myhusband bejoin untome.”Leah Judah Praise“Now I will praise the Lord.”Bilhah Dan Judging“God hath judge me.”Bilhah Naptali Wrestling “With greatwrestling'shave I wrestledwithmy sister.”Zilpah Gad Troop “Leah said, A troop cometh.”Zilpah Asher My happiness“Leah said, Happy am I.”Leah Issachar A rewardGodhath given me my reward.Leah Zebulon Dwelling “Now will my husband dwell with me.”Rachel Joseph Adding “The Lord shall add to me another son.”Rachel Benjamin Son of my “You are the son of my right hand.”
Genesis 31:15“Dowries”Dowries are important parts of marriage. Dowries are money or property brought by a bride to her husband at marriage.Jacob worked seven years to earn a dowry for Rachael.The pay then belongs to the bride and gives her security.Laban had withheld the dowry from both Leah and Rachael.A normal dowry was about three years of wages.This might help explain why Rachael stole the images that were her father’s.
Genesis 32:24“Wrestle a man until the breaking of the day”Tothink he wrestled and held an angel who couldn’t get away is out of the question! More than likely it was and angel (messenger) to give him a blessing (Doctrine of Salvation1:17, Joseph Fielding Smith).
Howardwas born without his left arm just below the elbow. He weighed around 130 pounds and was considered small for a man in his day. He served faithfully as a clerk for Joseph Smith.While Howard and Joseph were walking down the street in Nauvoo,the Prophet said, “Howard, I wish you were a little bigger, I would love to wrestle you.Howard stared at Joseph, squared off with him and said, “Don’t let my size stop you Joseph!”
They started horsing around and Joseph got him in some kind of wrestling hold and accidentally snapped his leg in two.Joseph was just sick about what had happened and visited Howard almost every day while he was recovering.Howard asked Joseph if he would give him a blessing. Joseph told him that he was in a hurry and would send his father to give him a blessing instead.Howard said, “No, you broke my leg, you give me the blessing.”Howard then brought up the account when the angel wrestled with Jacob in the Old Testament and hurt his thigh (Gen. 32:24-28).
Joseph blessed him and promised him that he would soon meet the girl of his dreams who would be his eternal companion and helpmeet.A few weeks later at one of the meetings in the groves, Joseph was preaching and Howard who was on crutches was scouting out the girls that were present.He saw a dark haired, dark eyed girl that he thought might be the one.He met her before the meeting was over. Her name was Martha Jane Knowlton. He married her shortly after their first meeting.Joseph’s prophecy was fulfilled.
Genesis 33:2Inthe Middle-east it was natural to show off your families and to put the best and most highly favored to be saved until the last.
Genesis 34:1-31TheDefilement of DinahTherehad been no consent on the part of Dinah, it was an act of violence, she was detained by force in the house of Shechem.The outrage of Simeon and Levi was justified, but to deceitfully set up a whole town for slaughter on the pretext of bringing them into the covenant was an evil and wicked thing. Jacob’s blessings on these two sons just prior to his death (Genesis 49:5-7) showed that neither he nor the Lord condoned this act.
Genesis 35:22Reubenlost theBirthright!Reuben, first born of Leah lost the birthright. Joseph was next in line even though he was the eleventh son. Bilhah and Zilpah would not be considered because they were the property of Rachel and Leah.It might have been a political move, not lust, he might have been trying to win for his mother by discrediting Bilhah.
Onething that comes through abundantly clear in these chapters is the significance that marriage in the covenant had for Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.Brigham Young said,“Be careful, O ye mothers in Israel, and do not teach your daughters in future, as many of them have been taught, to marry out of Israel. Woe to you who do it; you will lose your crowns as sure as God lives” (Discourses of Brigham Young, 196).
Joseph F. Smithsaid,“Some people feel that it does not make very much difference whether a girl marries a man in the Church, full of the faith of the Gospel, or an unbeliever. Some of our young people have married outside of the Church; but very few of those who have done it have failed to come to grief…There is nothing that I can think of, in a religious way, that would grieve me more intensely than to see one of my boys marry an unbelieving girl, or one of my girls marry an unbelieving man” (Gospel Doctrine, 279).
Spencer W. Kimball said,“Many times, women have come to me in tears. How they would love to be able to train their children in the gospel of Jesus Christ! But they are unable to do so because of religious incompatibility with a nonmember husband. How they would like to accept for themselves positions of responsibility in the Church! How they would like to pay their tithing! How they would appreciate going to the temple for their own endowments and to do work for the dead! How they wish they could be sealed for eternity and have the promise of have their own flesh and blood, their children, sealed to them for eternity! Sometimes it is men in this predicament. But they have locked the doors, and the doors have often rusted on their hinges” (Miracle of Forgiveness, 241).