Jacob 1 to 4 – “Be Reconciled unto God through the Atonement of Christ”

March 9, 2020 to March 15, 2020

Jacob’s sermon at the temple (Jacob 1-3) exhorts his people to beware of pride, greed, and immorality. He encourages his people to look unto God for consolation.

“Jacob: Prophet, Theologian, Historian,” Robert J. Matthews, The Book of Mormon: Jacob through Words of Mormon, To Learn with Joy
This article offers an overview of Jacob’s life, what kind of records Jacob kept, a discussion how how he had authority through the Melchizedek priesthood rather than as a Levite priest, and a review of his sermon (the scattering and gathering of Israel, the atonement, the sins of pride and immorality, the power of faith in Christ).

“Pride and Riches,” Chauncey C. Riddle, The Book of Mormon: Jacob Through Words of Mormon, To Learn With Joy
A verse-by-verse commentary on Jacob 2:12-21, detailing “the land of promise,” gifts from God, humility, inequity, and sharing wealth in the Lord’s way.

“Jacob’s Connections to First Temple Traditions,” Kevin C. Christensen, Insights 23:4
In a brief essay, Christensen suggests that just as Jacob prophesied, the Jews would miss the mark and confuse the plain and precious parts of the Gospel. Christensen proposes that this could be the case because traces of pre-exilic religion are found among the Nephites, while the more Deuteronomistic religion is absent from Nephite religion.

“Literary Reflections of Jacob and His Descendants,” John S. Tanner, The Book of Mormon: Jacob Through Words of Mormon, To Learn With Joy
Tanner deals not only with the writings of Jacob in this piece, but also that of his descendants. Tanner takes a look at the often overlooked authors of the Book of Mormon, namely Jacob and his immediate descendants, and analyzes their treatment of the Book of Mormon text. The impact they left on the Book of Mormon is unmistakable and profound, yet often unappreciated.

“Jacob, Son of Lehi,” John S. Tanner, The Encyclopedia of Mormonism
A biographical entry on Jacob, a prominent Book of Mormon prophet who lived during a formative time of Nephite history.

“Revisiting the Seven Lineages of the Book of Mormon and the Seven Tribes of Mesoamerica,” Diane E. Wirth, BYU Studies Quarterly 52, no. 4
Jacob 1:13 names seven lineages. A pan-Mesoamerica legend tells of a core people descended from seven tribes, which may coincide with the seven lineages mentioned three times in the Book of Mormon. While no verifiable evidence ties these two accounts together, a closer look at the Mesoamerican legend is warranted.

“Antenantiosis in the Book of Mormon,” Gail Call, Reexploring the Book of Mormon
Jacob 4:8 contains a particular ancient literary device of teaching a thing by stating its opposite. His counsel to “despise not the revelations of God” urges the righteous “to hold revelations of God in the highest esteem. The unexpected negative increases the force of the idea that it apparently understates.”

“Holiness to the Lord: Biblical Temple Imagery in the Sermons of Jacob the Priest,” David Bokovoy, Video, 22 minutes
The Nephites’ sacred center was the temple, a place of gathering and instruction. While the Book of Mormon itself contains very few details on the nature of Nephite temple worship, when its sermons are read through the lens of ancient Israelite temple motifs, many of these discourses can be shown to rely upon biblical temple themes as part of their conceptual background. This observation proves especially true in the teachings of the Book of Mormon prophet Jacob, a man consecrated to fulfill the role of a priest.