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A Library Tour through Jacob 4-5
1. Now behold, it came to pass that I, Jacob, having ministered much unto my people
in word, (and I cannot write but a little of my words, because of the difficulty
of engraving our words upon plates) and we know that the things which we write upon
plates must remain;
2. But whatsoever things we write upon anything save it be upon plates must perish
and vanish away; but we can write a few words upon plates, which will give our children,
and also our beloved brethren, a small degree of knowledge concerning us, or concerning
their fathers --
3. Now in this thing we do rejoice; and we labor diligently to engraven these words
upon plates, hoping that our beloved brethren and our children will receive them
with thankful hearts, and look upon them that they may learn with joy and not with
sorrow, neither with contempt, concerning their first parents.
4. For, for this intent have we written these things, that they may know that we
knew of Christ, and we had a hope of his glory many hundred years before his coming;
and not only we ourselves had a hope of his glory, but also all the holy prophets
which were before us.
5. Behold, they believed in Christ and worshiped the Father in his name, and also
we worship the Father in his name. And for this intent we keep the law of Moses,
it pointing our souls to him; and for this cause it is sanctified unto us for righteousness,
even as it was accounted unto Abraham in the wilderness to be obedient unto the commands
of God in offering up his son Isaac, which is a similitude of God and his Only Begotten
6. Wherefore, we search the prophets, and we have many revelations and the spirit
of prophecy; and having all these witnesses we obtain a hope, and our faith becometh
unshaken, insomuch that we truly can command in the name of Jesus and the very trees
obey us, or the mountains, or the waves of the sea.
7. Nevertheless, the Lord God showeth us our weakness that we may know that it is
by his grace, and his great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have
power to do these things.
8. Behold, great and marvelous are the works of the Lord. How unsearchable are the
depths of the mysteries of him; and it is impossible that man should find out all
his ways. And no man knoweth of his ways save it be revealed unto him; wherefore,
brethren, despise not the revelations of God.
9. For behold, by the power of his word man came upon the face of the earth, which
earth was created by the power of his word. Wherefore, if God being able to speak
and the world was, and to speak and man was created, O then, why not able to command
the earth, or the workmanship of his hands upon the face of it, according to his
will and pleasure?
10. Wherefore, brethren, seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel from
his hand. For behold, ye yourselves know that he counseleth in wisdom, and in justice,
and in great mercy, over all his works.
Chapter 16 – Aphorisms and Memorable and Poetic Phrases
“An aphorism is a brief statement of a truth or principle.” The author has listed
dozens of aphorisms, including “Seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel
from his hand,” “Blessed are they who humble themselves without being compelled to
be humble” (Alma 32:16) and “Ye receive no witness until after the trial of your
faith” (Ether 12:6). Hundreds more might be found.
He also has a selection of longer aphorisms, which might not technically be aphorisms,
but which “present such a wise and inspired statement of truth” that he included
them. One of many is “It is given unto many to know the mysteries of God; nevertheless
they are laid under a strict command that they shall not impart only according to
the portion of his word which he doth grant unto the children of men, according to
the heed and diligence which they give unto him” (Alma 12:9).
This is followed by a listing of poetic phrases, such as “in the anguish of his
soul,” “that joy which is unspeakable and full of glory,” and “perfect brightness
Finally he lists memorable verses and phrases. As he admits, they are memorable
to him. “Each person can choose for themselves what verses they consider to be most
“Those of us who often read the Book of Mormon come to love certain ways of phrasing
the important principles found in the book, and these expressions rest upon our minds
as sweet memories and distillations of eternal truths and gospel principles.”
Dr. Duke’s lists are a good starting point, a springboard to discovering the reader’s
own favorites, and which expressions have spoken powerfully to each person.
11. Wherefore, beloved brethren, be reconciled unto him through the atonement of
Christ, his Only Begotten Son, and ye may obtain a resurrection, according to the
power of the resurrection which is in Christ, and be presented as the first-fruits
of Christ unto God, having faith, and obtained a good hope of glory in him before
he manifesteth himself in the flesh.
12. And now, beloved, marvel not that I tell you these things; for why not speak
of the atonement of Christ, and attain to a perfect knowledge of him, as to attain
to the knowledge of a resurrection and the world to come?
13. Behold, my brethren, he that prophesieth, let him prophesy to the understanding
of men; for the Spirit speaketh the truth and lieth not. Wherefore, it speaketh of
things as they really are, and of things as they really will be; wherefore, these
things are manifested unto us plainly, for the salvation of our souls. But behold,
we are not witnesses alone in these things; for God also spake them unto prophets
14. But behold, the Jews were a stiffnecked people; and they despised the words
of plainness, and killed the prophets, and sought for things that they could not
understand. Wherefore, because of their blindness, which blindness came by looking
beyond the mark, they must needs fall; for God hath taken away his plainness from
them, and delivered unto them many things which they cannot understand, because they
desired it. And because they desired it God hath done it, that they may stumble.
15. And now I, Jacob, am led on by the Spirit unto prophesying; for I perceive by
the workings of the Spirit which is in me, that by the stumbling of the Jews they
will reject the stone upon which they might build and have safe foundation.
16. But behold, according to the scriptures, this stone shall become the great,
and the last, and the only sure foundation, upon which the Jews can build.
17. And now, my beloved, how is it possible that these, after having rejected the
sure foundation, can ever build upon it, that it may become the head of their corner?
18. Behold, my beloved brethren, I will unfold this mystery unto you; if I do not,
by any means, get shaken from my firmness in the Spirit, and stumble because of my
over anxiety for you.
1. Behold, my brethren, do ye not remember to have read the words of the prophet
Zenos, which he spake unto the house of Israel, saying:
2. Hearken, O ye house of Israel, and hear the words of me, a prophet of the Lord.
3. For behold, thus saith the Lord, I will liken thee, O house of Israel, like unto
a tame olive-tree, which a man took and nourished in his vineyard; and it grew, and
waxed old, and began to decay.
4. And it came to pass that the master of the vineyard went forth, and he saw that
his olive-tree began to decay; and he said: I will prune it, and dig about it, and
nourish it, that perhaps it may shoot forth young and tender branches, and it perish
5. And it came to pass that he pruned it, and digged about it, and nourished it
according to his word.
6. And it came to pass that after many days it began to put forth somewhat a little,
young and tender branches; but behold, the main top thereof began to perish.
7. And it came to pass that the master of the vineyard saw it, and he said unto
his servant: It grieveth me that I should lose this tree; wherefore, go and pluck
the branches from a wild olive-tree, and bring them hither unto me; and we will pluck
off those main branches which are beginning to wither away, and we will cast them
into the fire that they may be burned.
8. And behold, saith the Lord of the vineyard, I take away many of these young and
tender branches, and I will graft them whithersoever I will; and it mattereth not
that if it so be that the root of this tree will perish, I may preserve the fruit
thereof unto myself; wherefore, I will take these young and tender branches, and
I will graft them whithersoever I will.
9. Take thou the branches of the wild olive-tree, and graft them in, in the stead
thereof; and these which I have plucked off I will cast into the fire and burn them,
that they may not cumber the ground of my vineyard.
10. And it came to pass that the servant of the Lord of the vineyard did according
to the word of the Lord of the vineyard, and grafted in the branches of the wild
11. And the Lord of the vineyard caused that it should be digged about, and pruned,
and nourished, saying unto his servant: It grieveth me that I should lose this tree;
wherefore, that perhaps I might preserve the roots thereof that they perish not,
that I might preserve them unto myself, I have done this thing.
12. Wherefore, go thy way; watch the tree, and nourish it, according to my words.
13. 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
14. 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.
15. And it came to pass that a long time passed away, and the Lord of the vineyard
said unto his servant: Come, let us go down into the vineyard, that we may labor
in the vineyard.
16. And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard, and also the servant, went
down into the vineyard to labor. And it came to pass that the servant said unto his
master: Behold, look here; behold the tree.
17. And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard looked and beheld the tree
in the which the wild olive branches had been grafted; and it had sprung forth and
begun to bear fruit. And he beheld that it was good; and the fruit thereof was like
unto the natural fruit.
18. And he said unto the servant: Behold, the branches of the wild tree have taken
hold of the moisture of the root thereof, that the root thereof hath brought forth
much strength; and because of the much strength of the root thereof the wild branches
have brought forth tame fruit. Now, if we had not grafted in these branches, the
tree thereof would have perished. And now, behold, I shall lay up much fruit, which
the tree thereof hath brought forth; and the fruit thereof I shall lay up against
the season, unto mine own self.
19. And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: Come,
let us go to the nethermost part of the vineyard, and behold if the natural branches
of the tree have not brought forth much fruit also, that I may lay up of the fruit
thereof against the season, unto mine own self.
20. And it came to pass that they went forth whither the master had hid the natural
branches of the tree, and he said unto the servant: Behold these; and he beheld the
first that it had brought forth much fruit; and he beheld also that it was good.
And he said unto the servant: Take of the fruit thereof, and lay it up against the
season, that I may preserve it unto mine own self; for behold, said he, this long
time have I nourished it, and it hath brought forth much fruit.
21. And it came to pass that the servant said unto his master: How comest thou hither
to plant this tree, or this branch of the tree? For behold, it was the poorest spot
in all the land of thy vineyard.
22.And the Lord of the vineyard said unto him: Counsel me not; I knew that it was
a poor spot of ground; wherefore, I said unto thee, I have nourished it this long
time, and thou beholdest that it hath brought forth much fruit.
23.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto his servant: Look
hither; behold I have planted another branch of the tree also; and thou knowest that
this spot of ground was poorer than the first. But, behold the tree. I have nourished
it this long time, and it hath brought forth much fruit; therefore, gather it, and
lay it up against the season, that I may preserve it unto mine own self.
24.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said again unto his servant:
Look hither, and behold another branch also, which I have planted; behold that I
have nourished it also, and it hath brought forth fruit.
25.And he said unto the servant: Look hither and behold the last. Behold, this have
I planted in a good spot of ground; and I have nourished it this long time, and only
a part of the tree hath brought forth tame fruit, and the other part of the tree
hath brought forth wild fruit; behold, I have nourished this tree like unto the others.
26.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: Pluck
off the branches that have not brought forth good fruit, and cast them into the fire.
27.But behold, the servant said unto him: Let us prune it, and dig about it, and
nourish it a little longer, that perhaps it may bring forth good fruit unto thee,
that thou canst lay it up against the season.
28.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard and the servant of the Lord
of the vineyard did nourish all the fruit of the vineyard.
29.And it came to pass that a long time had passed away, and the Lord of the vineyard
said unto his servant: Come, let us go down into the vineyard, that we may labor
again in the vineyard. For behold, the time draweth near, and the end soon cometh;
wherefore, I must lay up fruit against the season, unto mine own self.
30.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard and the servant went down into
the vineyard; and they came to the tree whose natural branches had been broken off,
and the wild branches had been grafted in; and behold all sorts of fruit did cumber
31.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard did taste of the fruit, every
sort according to its number. And the Lord of the vineyard said: Behold, this long
time have we nourished this tree, and I have laid up unto myself against the season
32.But behold, this time it hath brought forth much fruit, and there is none of it
which is good. And behold, there are all kinds of bad fruit; and it profiteth me
nothing, notwithstanding all our labor; and now it grieveth me that I should lose
33.And the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: What shall we do unto the
tree, that I may preserve again good fruit thereof unto mine own self?
34.And the servant said unto his master: Behold, because thou didst graft in the
branches of the wild olive-tree they have nourished the roots, that they are alive
and they have not perished; wherefore thou beholdest that they are yet good.
35.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto his servant: The tree
profiteth me nothing, and the roots thereof profit me nothing so long as it shall
bring forth evil fruit.
36.Nevertheless, I know that the roots are good, and for mine own purpose I have
preserved them; and because of their much strength they have hitherto brought forth,
from the wild branches, good fruit.
37.But behold, the wild branches have grown and have overrun the roots thereof;
and because that the wild branches have overcome the roots thereof it hath brought
forth much evil fruit; and because that it hath brought forth so much evil fruit
thou beholdest that it beginneth to perish; and it will soon become ripened, that
it may be cast into the fire, except we should do something for it to preserve it.
38.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto his servant: Let us
go down into the nethermost parts of the vineyard, and behold if the natural branches
have also brought forth evil fruit.
39.And it came to pass that they went down into the nethermost parts of the vineyard.
And it came to pass that they beheld that the fruit of the natural branches had become
corrupt also; yea, the first and the second and also the last; and they had all become
40.And the wild fruit of the last had overcome that part of the tree which brought
forth good fruit, even that the branch had withered away and died.
41.And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard wept, and said unto the servant:
What could I have done more for my vineyard?
42.Behold, I knew that all the fruit of the vineyard, save it were these, had become
corrupted. And now these which have once brought forth good fruit have also become
corrupted; and now all the trees of my vineyard are good for nothing save it be to
be hewn down and cast into the fire.
43.And behold this last, whose branch hath withered away, I did plant in a good spot
of ground; yea, even that which was choice unto me above all other parts of the land
of my vineyard.
44.And thou beheldest that I also cut down that which cumbered this spot of ground,
that I might plant this tree in the stead thereof.
45.And thou beheldest that a part thereof brought forth good fruit, and a part thereof
brought forth wild fruit; and because I plucked not the branches thereof and cast
them into the fire, behold, they have overcome the good branch that it hath withered
46.And now, behold, notwithstanding all the care which we have taken of my vineyard,
the trees thereof have become corrupted, that they bring forth no good fruit; and
these I had hoped to preserve, to have laid up fruit thereof against the season,
unto mine own self. But, behold, they have become like unto the wild olive-tree,
and they are of no worth but to be hewn down and cast into the fire; and it grieveth
me that I should lose them.
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?
48. And it came to pass that the servant said unto his master: Is it not the loftiness
of thy vineyard -- have not the branches thereof overcome the roots which are good?
And because the branches have overcome the roots thereof, behold they grew faster
than the strength of the roots, taking strength unto themselves. Behold, I say, is
not this the cause that the trees of thy vineyard have become corrupted?
49. And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: Let
us go to and hew down the trees of the vineyard and cast them into the fire, that
they shall not cumber the ground of my vineyard, for I have done all. What could
I have done more for my vineyard?
50. But, behold, the servant said unto the Lord of the vineyard: Spare it a little
51. And the Lord said: Yea, I will spare it a little longer, for it grieveth me that
I should lose the trees of my vineyard.
52. Wherefore, let us take of the branches of these which I have planted in the nethermost
parts of my vineyard, and let us graft them into the tree from whence they came;
and let us pluck from the tree those branches whose fruit is most bitter, and graft
in the natural branches of the tree in the stead thereof.
53. And this will I do that the tree may not perish, that perhaps I may preserve
unto myself the roots thereof for mine own purpose.
54. And, behold, the roots of the natural branches of the tree which I planted whithersoever
I would are yet alive; wherefore, that I may preserve them also for mine own purpose,
I will take of the branches of this tree, and I will graft them in unto them. Yea,
I will graft in unto them the branches of their mother tree, that I may preserve
the roots also unto mine own self, that when they shall be sufficiently strong perhaps
they may bring forth good fruit unto me, and I may yet have glory in the fruit of
55. And it came to pass that they took from the natural tree which had become wild,
and grafted in unto the natural trees, which also had become wild.
56. And they also took of the natural trees which had become wild, and grafted into
their mother tree.
57. And the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: Pluck not the wild branches
from the trees, save it be those which are most bitter; and in them ye shall graft
according to that which I have said.
58. And we will nourish again the trees of the vineyard, and we will trim up the
branches thereof; and we will pluck from the trees those branches which are ripened,
that must perish, and cast them into the fire.
59. And this I do that, perhaps, the roots thereof may take strength because of their
goodness; and because of the change of the branches, that the good may overcome the
60. And because that I have preserved the natural branches and the roots thereof,
and that I have grafted in the natural branches again into their mother tree, and
have preserved the roots of their mother tree, that, perhaps, the trees of my vineyard
may bring forth again good fruit; and that I may have joy again in the fruit of my
vineyard, and, perhaps, that I may rejoice exceedingly that I have preserved the
roots and the branches of the first fruit --
61. Wherefore, go to, and call servants, that we may labor diligently with our might
in the vineyard, that we may prepare the way, that I may bring forth again the natural
fruit, which natural fruit is good and the most precious above all other fruit.
62. Wherefore, let us go to and labor with our might this last time, for behold the
end draweth nigh, and this is for the last time that I shall prune my vineyard.
63. Graft in the branches; begin at the last that they may be first, and that the
first may be last, and dig about the trees, both old and young, the first and the
last; and the last and the first, that all may be nourished once again for the last
64. Wherefore, dig about them, and prune them, and dung them once more, for the last
time, for the end draweth nigh. And if it be so that these last grafts shall grow,
and bring forth the natural fruit, then shall ye prepare the way for them, that they
65. And as they begin to grow ye shall clear away the branches which bring forth
bitter fruit, according to the strength of the good and the size thereof; and ye
shall not clear away the bad thereof all at once, lest the roots thereof should be
too strong for the graft, and the graft thereof shall perish, and I lose the trees
of my vineyard.
66. For it grieveth me that I should lose the trees of my vineyard; wherefore ye
shall clear away the bad according as the good shall grow, that the root and the
top may be equal in strength, until the good shall overcome the bad, and the bad
be hewn down and cast into the fire, that they cumber not the ground of my vineyard;
and thus will I sweep away the bad out of my vineyard.
67. And the branches of the natural tree will I graft in again into the natural tree;
68.And the branches of the natural tree will I graft into the natural branches of
the tree; and thus will I bring them together again, that they shall bring forth
the natural fruit, and they shall be one.
69. And the bad shall be cast away, yea, even out of all the land of my vineyard;
for behold, only this once will I prune my vineyard.
70. And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard sent his servant; and the servant
went and did as the Lord had commanded him, and brought other servants; and they
71. And the Lord of the vineyard said unto them: Go to, and labor in the vineyard,
with your might. For behold, this is the last time that I shall nourish my vineyard;
for the end is nigh at hand, and the season speedily cometh; and if ye labor with
your might with me ye shall have joy in the fruit which I shall lay up unto myself
against the time which will soon come.
72. And it came to pass that the servants did go and labor with their mights; and
the Lord of the vineyard labored also with them; and they did obey the commandments
of the Lord of the vineyard in all things.
73. And there began to be the natural fruit again in the vineyard; and the natural
branches began to grow and thrive exceedingly; and the wild branches began to be
plucked off and to be cast away; and they did keep the root and the top thereof equal,
according to the strength thereof.
74. And thus they labored, with all diligence, according to the commandments of the
Lord of the vineyard, even until the bad had been cast away out of the vineyard,
and the Lord had preserved unto himself that the trees had become again the natural
fruit; and they became like unto one body; and the fruits were equal; and the Lord
of the vineyard had preserved unto himself the natural fruit, which was most precious
unto him from the beginning.
75. And it came to pass that when the Lord of the vineyard saw that his fruit was
good, and that his vineyard was no more corrupt, he called up his servants, and said
unto them: Behold, for this last time have we nourished my vineyard; and thou beholdest
that I have done according to my will; and I have preserved the natural fruit, that
it is good, even like as it was in the beginning. And blessed art thou; for because
ye have been diligent in laboring with me in my vineyard, and have kept my commandments,
and have brought unto me again the natural fruit, that my vineyard is no more corrupted,
and the bad is cast away, behold ye shall have joy with me because of the fruit of
76. For behold, for a long time will I lay up of the fruit of my vineyard unto mine
own self against the season, which speedily cometh; and for the last time have I
nourished my vineyard, and pruned it, and dug about it, and dunged it; wherefore
I will lay up unto mine own self of the fruit, for a long time, according to that
which I have spoken.
77. And when the time cometh that evil fruit shall again come into my vineyard, then
will I cause the good and the bad to be gathered; and the good will I preserve unto
myself, and the bad will I cast away into its own place. And then cometh the season
and the end; and my vineyard will I cause to be burned with fire.