Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Rightful Place of the U.S. and North America in the Land of Promise

For some reason, North American Theorists seem to want to eliminate the rest of America in their singling out the United States as the sole area of the Land of Promise, despite the fact that so many Prophets, General Authorities and even Joseph Smith have said over and over again that the Land of Promise mentioned in the scriptural record is North and South America.
It is the land that was separated from the rest of the world after the Flood (Ether 13:2). 
    Comment: When the waters settled and the Earth was divided in Peleg’s time shortly after the Flood, the continents formed—those on the other side of the Ocean from Europe, or the other side of the ocean from Asia, called the Western Hemisphere, was completely unknown until at least 800 A.D. when the Vikings began exploring along Iceland and then Greenland and finally to the Newfoundland area of Canada). [our appreciation to Daniel Feher for the use of his maps 
It was the land that was kept from the knowledge of other nations (2 Nephi 1:8) for approximately 3800 years between the time of the waters receded from the Flood (Ether 13:2) until “the Spirit of God came down and wrought upon a man (Gentile) and he went forth upon the many waters, even unto the seed of my brethren, who were in the promised land” (1 Nephi 13:12); 
    Comment: Since the Western Hemsiphere could only be reached by sea, it was kept from the knowledge of other nations since no ships were designed and built that could sail deep ocean waters until around the 13th or 14th centuries A.D., and the North Atlantic Gyre, which ran in a clockwise direction between the Canary Islands, the West Indies, up the east coast of North America and across the ocean toward England and down the western coast of Europe toward the Canary Islands. Once Columbus  was led to discover this ocean course, nothing could keep him from eventually sailing west into the Atlantic and discovering the Western Hemipshere)
It was the land where Lehi landed, where the Jaredites, Nephites, and Mulekites were led, and the land that has been labeled the choicest land (Ether 13:2), a land of liberty, a land where “there shall be no kings upon the land who shall raise up unto the Gentiles” (2 Nephi 10-11); 
    Comment: Basically, no Gentile kings ruled in the Americas. Canada was ruled from France and then England, the U.S. was ruled from England, and most of the rest of the hemisphere was ruled from Spain or Portugal. In the major land areas of North and South America, no resident king ruled locally, other than ones appointed or having lived all their lives here.
It was the land consecrated to Lehi and his posterity (2 Nephi 1:9); kept from all other nations (2 Nephi 1:8); a land that would be given to the Gentiles if Lehi’s seed dwindled in unbelief (2 Nephi 1:10-11);
    Comment: Like all lands of promise, portions of this great land of promise, known today as the Western Hemisphere, was dedicated to certain groups. The Jaredites received a northern portion of the island upon which they settled, while Lehi shared in that land, plus the southern portion of that island spoken of in 2 Nephi 10:20 before the great land changes that took place at the time of the crucifixion, which connected most of the southern portions of that island and other lands there. We are told through modern-day revelation that the northern portion of this hemisphere is dedicated or consecreated to the house of Ephraim.
A land upon which the Lord would raise up a mighty nation among the Gentiles, yea, even upon the face of this land; and by them shall our seed be scattered (1 Nephi 22:7)
    Comment: This is not the United Colonies, for the English settlers did not scatter Nephi’s brethren (the Lamanites). Even after the wars, the U.S. has a history of taking care of the indigenous Indians with reservations and finally laws that have granted them “separate nation status”—a factor that does not exist anywhere else in the Western Hemisphere other than the U.S.
This nation raised up on this land prophesied about was Spain, called the Spanish Empire, which came to control nearly half of North America (see map left: Mexico, including the conquest of the Aztec Empire, and Texas, California, Arizona, etc.) and all of Central America, and the West Indies (to the Crown of Castile and Judgment of Aragon), and Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Chile in South America, including the conquest of the vast Inca Empire. In the 15th through the 18th centuries, known as “the Golden Age of Spain” (Sigio de Oro), the Spanish Crown controlled almost all of the Western Hemisphere, with only a few exceptions (Britain and France controlled about half of North America)
    It was also often said during this time that it was the empire on which the sun never set. This sprawling overseas empire of the Spanish Golden Age was controlled, not from inland Valladolid, but from Seville, where the Casa de ContrataciĆ³n (House of Trade) regulated commerce with the Indies, as well as licenses for emigration. The supreme body for administering the Indies was the Council of the Indies, established in 1524. Thus a new nation was established ‘in this land” that was not directly responsible to any king, but to a conglomeration of entities and empires, or more accurately, the Holy Roman Empire as it settled in Europe beginning with the Frankish king Charlemagne (Sacrum Romanum Imperium) was a multi-ethnic complex of territories in central Europe that developed during the Early Middle Ages and continued until its dissolution in 1806).
A land to which a Gentile would be led, where they would separate from their mother Gentiles (countries) and where the mother Gentiles would be “gathered together upon the waters, and upon the land also, to battle against them” (1 Nephi 13:17);
Comment: This has two parts: 1) Those separating from the mother nations, were those of the original 13 colonies from Massachusetts/New Hampshire to Georgia. The mother Gentiles gathered on the sea and land would be Great Britain and originally France (who fought England over parts of North America), Spain until they divested themselves of Florida, and Mexico after they gained their independence from first France and then Spain; and 2) the Latin countries of Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Chile, Peru, and Bolivia that eventually broke away from Spain and Portugal control between 1800 and 1829, including all South American countries except Suriname and the Guayanas, who later broke away from France, Britain and the Dutch in the 20th century.
A land where the New Jerusalem would be placed (Ether 13:3-6,10; 3 Nephi 20:22; Revelations 21:2).
Comment: This New Jerusalem, which will be extremely large—John records that the city is nearly 1,400 miles long, and it is as wide and as high as it is long, i.e., a perfect cube (Revelation 21:15-17)—will be the governing city of the land of promise. It will be located in what is now the State of Missouri (D&C 84:3), and be the seat of government for the Americas and from which the Lord will rule the world. At its center will be the great temple of the New Jerusalem in which the Lord will make his appearance, and from which he will govern all the earth ("The Center Place of Zion"). Elder Orson Pratt said, "Zion will not need the sun when the Lord is there, and all the city is lighted up by the glory of his presence. . . . When the people meet together in assemblies like this, in their Tabernacles, the Lord will meet with them, his glory will be upon them; a cloud will overshadow them by day and if they happen to have an evening meeting they will not need . . . lights of an artificial nature, for the Lord will be there and his glory will be upon all their assemblies. So says Isaiah the Prophet, and I believe it" (in Journal of Discourses, 14:355-56; D&;C 88:7-13).
Elder Bruce R. McConkie said about the city of Enoch and the New Jerusalem: "Enoch's city, with its translated inhabitants now in their resurrected state, shall return, as a New Jerusalem, to join with the city of the same name which has been built upon the American continent. When this earth becomes a celestial sphere `that great city, the holy Jerusalem,' shall again descend `out of heaven from God,' as this earth becomes the abode of celestial beings forever" (Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, 3:581).
    It should be noted that much of this writing is about the world, the whole earth, the City of God, not about the United States or any other country--after all, there were no nation at the time, no boundary lines drawn, no political segments--it was just one land.

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