http://www.ldsendowment.com/seed_abraham.htmMost are familiar with the promise to Abraham that through his seed all the earth would be blessed. But, who are the seed of Abraham? Where are they today? How do they bless the world? Why was Abraham the one who was chosen to receive this promise? Why not Adam, Seth, Enoch, Noah, Shem (Melchizedek) or a myriad of others?
The answers to these questions become plain when one takes a close look at the teachings of Jesus and understands his mission as portended in the Old Testament writings and explained in the New. These writings are highly encoded material with many levels of meaning. However, (carnal) man often lives his existence as a word-worshiping literalist, so he knows little of higher things, if anything at all. To fully understand what is meant by the allegory of Abraham and the promises to his seed, one must step beyond the literal and deep into the spiritual.
A literalist will think that you must have a pedigree that traces back to Abraham in order to be of Abraham's seed. Moreover, such a word-worshiper will think that all who do not have this pedigree are not guaranteed the promises to Abraham unless he is somehow adopted into this lineage. One might notice that Adam, Seth, Enoch, and even the great king over Abraham, Melchizedek, do not have this pedigree, since they were before Abraham. One might also notice that the scriptures speak of these pre-Abrahamic individuals as "perfect in their days". The notion of having these individuals adopted into Abraham's pedigree as his children (seed) is rather ridiculous. In reality, these ridiculous notions are to speak to one of the error of taking this story too literally.
At the time of Jesus, those who were literally Abraham's seed comprised the Jewish leadership. One might notice that much of the scriptures is about pedigree-making and this was not lost on those who considered themselves pious scholars of the scriptures. Undoubtedly, many of them would have documents proving their bloodline back to Abraham as their right to the blessings of his seed. Moreover, the scriptural records give frequent mention of them being proud of it.
However, the scriptural records also contain many passages as to the folly of relying on these literal pedigrees as a sign of righteousness. The Pharisees and Sadducees, often proclaiming their righteousness by their Abrahamic pedigree, were always corrected by those who understood the reality of their claim. John the Baptist warned them rightly to "… think not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham." (Matthew 3:9) Ah yes, the folly of many is to put the emphasis on outer qualities rather than the more important inner qualities. The façade of the outer image is what always seems to impress the world-mind the greatest.
A careful study of the scriptures reveals that deep meanings regarding the seed of Abraham was not lost on everyone. Jesus and his disciples understood the real meaning well. They could tell the true seed of Abraham from imposters. They knew that literal pedigree-making had nothing to do with it.
When Jesus entered Capernaum, he was met by a Roman centurion who, being of Rome, claimed none of the pedigree of the Israelites. Yet, of him Jesus said "… Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 8:10-11) Dear reader, which was more important… pedigree or faith?
Paul, a sort of outsider among the disciples, understood the same principle too. The twelve had this same tendency towards literalism held among the rank-and-file, despite their face-to-face encounters with Jesus. Perhaps Paul, with his claims of apostolic authority from a line outside of the twelve, understood it better than they. Perhaps this allegory itself has deep meanings that are often missed along with the rest.
To the Romans, Paul expounds the folly of the literalistic view of the seed of Abraham with the revealing words: "…For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel: Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children" (Romans 9:6-7) He even returns to it in the same document with another volley: "…. For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith. For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect." (Romans 4:13-14) One is left to wonder how much clearer can these things be?
The LDS (Mormon) scriptures contain some of the deepest meanings found in holy writings, despite the fact that the LDS themselves are prone to overlook them. D&C 132 is all about what is called "the new and everlasting covenant". And what is this? It is simply stated as "doing the works of Abraham." Unfortunately, early leaders mistook this as a license to live polygamy. But, D&C 132 has little to do with polygamy and everything to do with the "works of Abraham". And what are the works of Abraham? Stated simply, it is to do "… none other things than that which (he was) commanded". (verse 37). Indeed, this is the sum and substance of the new and everlasting covenant.
It is noteworthy that Jesus used the same words as are recorded in D&C 132 to respond to Jews: "They (the Jews) answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham." (John 8:39)
One is left to wonder about how more plain it can be. Jesus came to the earth and spiritualized the blood which was falsely worshiped by Israel. Man often sees the outer (physical) as more important than the inner (spiritual). The seed of Abraham through which all of the world would be blessed was never meant to be a literal (blood) seed at all. Rather the seed of Abraham was meant to refer to a spiritual (symbolic) seed. The seed of Abraham are all those "who do the works of Abraham", which is to do "… none other things that that which they (are) commanded" (by the Father). Those who live the new and everlasting covenant are the real seed of Abraham which blesses the earth, and leavens the whole, seasons the world like salt.
One might wonder whether (s)he, himself (herself), is among the seed of Abraham. In reality, the answer does not depend on race, culture, pedigrees, nationality, religion, or career. These are all the things of the world. The answer to it all is right within you. It is withheld from none. Rather we withhold it from ourselves.
Ultimately, one will come to realize that one needs to be born as an offspring of Abraham. Rebirth is the key that will open this mystery. When the carnal man dies and the spiritual man reborn, the seed of Abraham is manifest. The kingdom of heaven is always at hand. It is that close to you.
The seed of Abraham is destined to become as numerous as the stars in the sky and the sand upon the shore. Ultimately, all carnal men will be faced with the reality of chasing their self-imposed illusions and come to realize their own poverty. Like the prodigal son, every man will eventually "come to himself" and, in doing so, voluntarily cease his wanderings to return to his Father. When that happens is up to you. When it does occur, the Father rushes to meet you with warm embrace. He rejoices in the son (or daughter) who for a long time was lost, but became found. Ye are him. Those around you are them.
This is indeed food for thought... discover the truth for yourself and hold fast to it:)
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