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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Son of Righteousness, in comparison to the Lord of Hosts

Son of Righteousness, in comparison to the Lord of Hosts

As I was reading the scriptures today I read Ether 9:22,

“And after [Emer] anointed Coriantum to reign in his stead he lived four more years, and he saw peace in the land; yea and he even saw the Son of Righteousness, and did rejoice and glory in his day; and he died in peace.”

Having a passion for visitations of Christ I was pleased to see Christ visit yet another person, however as I decided to search for more examples of “Son of Righteousness.”

The footnote from Ether sends us to 3 Nephi 25:2, which is the same as Malachi 4:2, with the exception that the Malachi uses the word “Sun” in place of “Son” and a few extra commas. Now Malachi 4 is one of the chapters that Moroni read to Joseph Smith when he visited him, so these verses do pertain to our day specifically. But why? I will quote 3 Ne. 25:1-2:

“ For behold, the day cometh that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble; and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of Hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
2 But unto you that fear my name, shall the Son of Righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves in the stall.

In verse one above we see that the Lord of Hosts is speaking by the “saith the...” statement. Verse two begins with I assume the same voice of the Lord of Hosts by the “that fear my name.” Now this is where a new person comes in, the Son of Righteousness. I might me misreading this, but I think there are two people spoken of in verse two. One the Lord of Hosts and second the Son of Righteousness.

The only explanation for who this is just that the Lord of hosts is God the Father and the Son of Righteousness is Christ. If this is the case a simple word search for “Lord of Hosts” can give an look into something that we rarely talk about, the role of God the Father, verses God the Son. Lord of Hosts seems to be the destructive one with all the vengeance.

Another verse to support the Son of Righteousness as Christ would when Nephi talks about the Christ visiting the Nephities after his resurrection, be 2 Ne 26:9, “the Son of Righteousness shall appear to them, and he shall heal them, and they shall have peace with him...”

Please let me know your thoughts on this.


Robby C said...

Interesting observation about 3 Nephi 25:1-2. May I offer another interpretation? Could the Lord of Hosts, who is speaking, and the Son of Righteousness be the same person? At first it may seem odd that one would refer to themselves in the third person (though it makes for great comedy…”Ooohhh!!!!! Jimmy’s down. Jimmy might have a compound fracture. Jimmy's going into shock!!" …but I digress). It is not as odd when a title is used instead of a name. Let me give an example. I’ll go back a few years, but hopefully this will be someone that most people recognize. Karl Malone was a power forward that played for the Utah Jazz. For a good portion of his career he had a distinct nickname…The Mailman. It was not uncommon to hear Karl say things like, “Yeah, Houston has been playing well, but come Friday they’ll be going up against the Mailman, and he always delivers.” Even though it was Karl speaking, he didn’t refer to himself as “me” but he used a title as he talked about himself. This happens quite often, in fact, when a title is involved. Now if he had said “Yeah, Houston has been playing well, but come Friday they’ll be going up against Karl, and Karl always delivers,” then we might think it sounds a little strange; but because he used a title instead of his name, we don’t really find it strange at all. Son of Righteousness is a title. It could be that Christ is referring to himself using a title (most likely to get a point or feeling across, just like Karl Malone uses a title to get a point across) when he says, “But unto you that fear my name, shall the Son of Righteousness arise with healing in his wings.”

There is definitely evidence to suggest that the Lord of Hosts is Jesus Christ.
In 3 Nephi 22:5 we get a whole bunch of other names/titles for this Lord of Hosts.
“For thy maker, thy husband, the Lord of Hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel—the God of the whole earth shall he be called.”

Lord of Hosts = Maker = Husband = Redeemer = the Holy One of Israel = God of the whole earth.

Now lets have some fun with the transitive property (I can’t help it…I’m a math teacher)

If Lord of Hosts = Maker (3 Nephi 22:5) and Maker = Christ (Mosiah 3:8), then Lord of Hosts = Christ.

If Lord of Hosts = Husband (3 Nephi 22:5) and Husband = Christ (Revelations 19:7-9, 21:2, Jeffrey R. Holland - Christ and the New Covenant, pg 290), then Lord of Hosts = Christ.

If Lord of Hosts = Redeemer (3 Nephi 22:5) and Redeemer = Christ (Helaman 5:12), then Lord of Hosts = Christ.

If Lord of Hosts = Holy One of Israel (3 Nephi 22:5) and Holy One of Israel = Christ (2 Nephi 25:29), then Lord of Hosts = Christ.

If Lord of Hosts = God of the whole earth (3 Nephi 22:5) and God of the whole earth = Christ (3 Nephi 11:14), then Lord of Hosts = Christ.

If Lord of Hosts = God of Israel (1 Chronicles 17:24) and God of Israel = Christ (3 Nephi 11:14), Then Lord of Hosts = Christ.

There seems to be pretty good evidence that the Lord of Hosts is Christ.

An investigation of the word “Hosts” is also interesting. In the American Heritage Dictionary there are two entries for the word Host. The first has several definitions related to receiving or entertaining. The first definition under the second entry however is “an army”. This is consistent with the idea that at the End of Days, when all the nations of the earth shall be gathered (Zechariah 14:2) at Armageddon (Revelations 16:14-16) there will be a great battle. The city of Jerusalem “shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished” (Zechariah 14:2) Then the Lord will come “And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives” (Zechariah 14:4) “And the Lord shall utter his voice before his army.” (Joel 2:11) “Then shall the Lord go forth, and fight against those nations.” (Zechariah 14:3) Christ will literally be the Lord of his army, the Lord of Hosts.

Dallas said...

I am going to have to agree with you on this one. Thanks. It just seemed odd when I read it, at first I thought the Son of Righteousness was not even Christ, but than I came to the conclusion that he was, the only thing I could come to was my hypothesis. However now I like yours even better.

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Let me offer a third possible interpretation.

I concur with the comments regarding Avraham Gileadi's work concerning the proper interpretation of the Book of Isaiah, where "RIGHTEOUSNESS" is a metaphore used to describe a Servant in the hands of Christ, as also stated in thrid Nephi, who will come to prepare the way for Christ at His Second Coming, as John The Baptist came to prepare the way for His First Coming.

The "Lord Of Hosts" is a reference to God the Father, who according to the Book of Mormon, will INITIATE this Great & Final Work through His Servant "RIGHTEOUSNESS", not to be confused with the metaphor used to describe Christ... "SALVATION".

Righteousness is to PRECEED Salvation, in order to prepare God's Children to recieve Christ.

These are the "TWO HANDS" of God the Father, as described in Isaih.

So this infers the OBVIOUS...The "other hand" of God would be the Holy Spirit being sent in the flesh to prepare the way of Christ's Return.