Every so often I’ll read a passage and suddenly my understanding is further enlightened. I wonder how I possibly could have missed it the other times I read that same scripture. Does this ever happen to you?

For many years it has been apparent to me that throughout the scriptures Heavenly Father communicates His love and desire for our peace, joy and well being. In return, He desires us to love Him with all our being. What does that truly look like? Great communication.

In this chapter of only 21 verses. words denoting communication are used a minimum of 32 times! Hear, hearken, look, heard, declare, spoken, tell, speak for example. There is a lot in 1 Nephi 20!

At the very start it is stated in the heading, “Compare Isaiah 48”. They are almost word for word. As I studied it further I found some differences, however the message is identical.

The fact that this passage is found twice in our Standard Works tells us that this message must be very important for God’s people to ‘get’.  He is addressing the converted.

I’ve listed most of those expressions and then I marked how often they are mentioned in each of the chapters for your convenience.

Expression

1 Nephi 20

Isaiah 48

Hearken

3

2

Hear

2

3

Thou hearest not

2

2

Ear not opened

1

1

Thou hearest

1

1

I showed them

5

3

Hath declared

3

2

Seen

1

1

Will not declare

3

3

Sing

1

1

Tell

1

1

Utter

1

1

Say

1

1

Thou knewest not   

2

2

I have spoken

4

1

Not spoken

1

1

 

A minimum of sixteen expressions of communication are mentioned by the Lord, some, several times within those 21 verses. We certainly get the picture of how important communication is seen from His point of view! I’ve not even included a few others like “mention”, “teacheth” and “leadeth”.

Forming this list I noticed a pattern of sorts->

  1.  7 times we are exhorted to receive God’s message. (hear, hearken, look)
  2. Our Lord clearly makes known His counsel 12 times in 1 Nephi, 6 times in Isaiah. (declares, show, spoken)
  3. We are commanded to share His message 7 times. (declare, tell, utter, sing, say)
  4. Our Lord admonishes those that do not share His message with others.  (Because we do not hear, know, or speak) 6 times this is mentioned.

God makes promises to those who do share the Lord’s messages->

  1. “The Lord hath loved him” (I believe this means that person will  feel/know the love of the Lord)
  2. “He will fulfill His word which He hath declared”
  3. “He shall make his way prosperous”
  4. “teacheth thee to profit”
  5. “leadeth thee by the way thou shouldst go”

He gives 5 more promises in verses 18 & 19, if we listen to His commandments->

  1. “thy peace as a river”
  2. “thy righteousness as the waves of the sea”
  3. “thy seed as the sand”
  4. “offspring like the gravel”
  5. “name not cut off or destroyed”

I love the Lord’s thoughts regarding peace and righteousness-perhaps because I love water so.

And yet more promises to His redeemed people->

They:

  • Thirst not
  • Are led through the desert
  • Waters flow out of the rock for them (revelation)
  • Claves the rock and the waters gush out
  • The Lord does all this and greater also

I recognize a progression here very much similar to my own experience that began the day I received the gift of the Holy Ghost -from simply feeling filled, and led through experiences with revelation on to the promises of “the Lord does all this and greater also”.

I doubt you will dash off to your scriptures and study these chapters. 🙂  However, if you come across either and discover more morsels, I’d love to hear from you.

Do you understand these chapters differently?

Have you discovered anything else I’ve not mentioned?

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