Because I knew that thou [Israel] art obstinate, and thy neck is an iron sinew [stiff-necked won’t bend or bow], and thy brow brass.” (Isaiah 48:4)
What does it mean to have a brass brow?
Look up. Notice the position of your forehead and eyebrows. Now try looking up without using your forehead, eyebrows or neck. Can you?
- What is God telling the Israelites through the symbolism of the forehead and neck?
- Do you have a reputation of being stubborn? How are you overcoming it?
- In what ways do you look to God?
- In what ways are you riding yourself of pride?
- In what ways are you summiting to God?
I recently did a study on hair for our “Body of Christ” Series. Sometimes when you study a subject yo
u think you know it pretty well and then you begin and realize that your knowledge is very small. This is exactly how I felt in this study. I learned far more than I knew. I invite you to take a small topic and study it.
The first time ‘hair’ is used in the Bible is when Esau was born (Genesis 25:25)The word for hair in Hebrew is “שֵׂעָר” (se’ar) consisting of the consonants shin-ayin-reish. These are the same consonants used in the word “shi’ur” meaning a “measured portion”.
They are also the same consonants for the Hebrew word שער (sha’ar) meaning “gate”.
These suggests that hair acts like a gate and can be measured. Like a gate acts as a connection between those inside and those outside, so does hair act as a connection between the inside and outside. God said no hair of the head would be lost to him (Alma 40:23) suggesting he knows and measures all things.
We can imagine God being the keeper of the gate regulating the revelation we receive into our head and keeping track of the lost pieces of the gate. You may imagine something different.
Here is a list of symbols I found that had to do with hair.
- Innumerable – the hairs together on a head
- Minuteness (hairbreadth) – the thickness of a single hair (Judges 20:16)
- Honored / Wisdom – Grey and hoary white hair (Proverbs 16:31; 20:29) Expressing old age (Isaiah 46:4), and wisdom (Solomon 4:9-10?)
- Glorious / Divine presence “whose brightness and glory defy all description” (Joseph Smith History 1:17; Daniel 7:9; Revelation 1:14)
- Humble and mighty people – “hair of the feet and the beard” (Isaiah 7:20)
- Terror or fear – the “hair of the flesh” is said to “stand up” (Job 4:15)
- Slavery – “instead of well set hair baldness” (Isaiah 3:24; 2 Nephi 13:24)
- Strength – Samson’s “hair of his head began to grow again” (Judges 16:22)
- Omniscience – even a hair of the head shall not be lost (Alma 40:23; D&C 9:14; 29:25); a hair of his head shall not fall … unnoticed (D&C 84:80; 84:116)
- Gate – hair is like a gate between the outside and the inside (Hebrew word with same consonants as hair is gate)
- Measurable – our hair “shall not be lost” (Alma 40:23) (Hebrew word close to hair is “measured portion”)
What insights do you know about hair?
How has this study helped you become closer to Christ? Your family?
I had always understood that the “ministering of angels” to mean that the Aaronic Priesthood were blessed to see angles. Recently while studying the scriptures I learned what “ministering angels” really meant.
What is an angel?
In Hebrew and Greek angel means “messenger.” God has “sent angels to minister unto the children of men, to make manifest… the coming of Christ.” (Moroni 7:22) They bear Christ’s message, declaring his word and therefore building faith.
Ministering Angels are missionaries “minister[ing] unto all the scattered tribes of Israel…and they can show themselves unto whatsoever man it seemeth them good.” (3 Nephi 28:29, 30)
They are those who receive the Holy Ghost. “I said unto you that after ye had received the Holy ghost ye could speak with the tongue of angels?” and they “speak the words of Christ.”
Those that witness miracles (an indicator of the Lord’s help) are also ministering angels. “have miracles ceased? Behold I say unto you, Nay; neither have angels ceased to minister unto the children of men.” Angels are “subject unto [Christ] to minister according to the word of his command, showing themselves unto them of strong faith and a firm mind in every form of godliness.”
Ministering angels are subject under Christ’s authority. They are those that are baptized and doing Christ’s work. Ministering Angels are those declaring His word and building faith in Christ. They are us!
When you are baptized you become an angel. The Lord will prompt you to help someone and you’ll see the hand of the Lord working through your kindnesses.
When we teach with the spirit those with the spirit will respond and recognize the angelic ministry and miracles and it will build their faith.
We, as members of the Church, are Ministering Angels. We gain strength by treasuring up His word so its power is within us. If we are prepared with this power we can teach the gospel the way angels do: by the power of the Holy Ghost.
see General conference talk, “What Every Aaronic Priesthood Holder Needs to Understand” by Douglas D Holmes, first counselor in the Young Men General Presidency
Olive oil is the life essence of the olive. It represents the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of God and is a symbol of peace. When used with authority olive oil brings the power of Holy Ghost into our lives, it is the great sacred symbol of all mortality.
There are three main uses for olive oil
- LIGHT. The source of light and warmth came from a wick with olive oil, it lit their homes. “Pour out light upon them” is a symbol of olive oil being poured out
- FOOD. Olive oil was the basic element of food. Used as cooking oil and as a condiment for salads and breads. Bread was ground flour mixed with olive oil. A Jewish oral belief says that olive oil is light to the mind and enhances the intellect. “I will nourish thee and feed thee.” The Israelites would ground their flour very fine to make the very best for the Lord’s temple.
- MEDICINAL. Olive oil is a heavenly ointment used to heal wounds and leaves no scaring. It was used as a poultice and an ointment. This represents the great healing power of our Savior
Fire keeps our meat from spoiling just as the Holy Ghost keeps us from spoiling. The Hebrew meaning for the word wickedness is “spoil rotten.”
Olive oil is used in several different places in the Biblical Tabernacle.
- The Horn of Oil at the lavar or place of washing and used to anoint the priests.
- The Menorah was lit with the material of priests clothes and olive oil.
- The prayer alter is lit from the oil of the sacrificial offerings. This represents our prayers being lit with our sacrifices.
Some believe that olive oil is the token of forgiveness. Paul spoke of it as “the oil of gladness” (Hebrews 1:9)
The cow represented the open, public display of sexual behavior. Following your animal instincts, your ego.
When Moses came down from the mountain and saw the Israelites “worshiping the golden calf” they were acting like the symbol of the bull. A bull does whatever it wants to in public without shame. It shows sexual emotion in public with no shame. The Israelites were acting like cattle.
To worship means to practice being like what you are worshiping until you become like it. If you practice it you’ll become it. When you have your children practice teaching others they become what they teach (have learned). When you select a book for your child think about what they are “practicing” or learning for they are “practicing” what they will become.
Ask yourself the question, “What will they become when they are finished with it (book, movie, show, art work, friends, etc.)?
What are you allowing your children to “worship”? What are you “worshiping”?
In the Hebrew language they use the plural for face (faces) as indicated by the suffix ים iym.
Most words in the Hebrew language expresses the idea of motion or denote objects of action. The action behind paniym is the expression of emotion and thoughts in the face, and since we have an infinite number of thoughts and emotions the Hebrew word is plural.
This Hebrew word more precisely means the “presence” or the “wholeness” of an individual who is ONE with God.
Can others see the presence of God when they look into your face?
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“Be of Good Cheer Before My Face” Devotional Guide Available NOW!
We have prepared a PDF “Be of Good Cheer Before My Face” Devotional Guide for you to use with your family. Table Talk Discussion #63 goes along with the guide.