Li’l Help on ‘The Promised Land’ Talk?

I was asked to speak in Sacrament Meeting next week on the topic of ‘The Promised Land’ based on Ether 2.  This is not a topic that I already have ready to go off the top of my head.  I looked at and it is not one of the talk help topics.  I did find an interesting article from Elder Holland in a 1976 Ensign.  I wonder if he would write the same article today?  I also found an article by Michael Ash in Mormon Times.

I feel certain that the bishopric probably want me to make it patriotic.  I am fairly patriotic, but I am often a bit uncomfortable mixing that with my religion, particularly in a Sacrament Meeting talk.

Any thoughts, references or links on this topic would be appreciated.


9 Responses to “Li’l Help on ‘The Promised Land’ Talk?”

  1. 1 JJ Rousseau July 3, 2011 at 5:02 pm

    I would take it in the direction of what it means to be a Zion ward or stake.

  2. 2 Eric Nielson July 3, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Your advice is good. I was thinking that maybe our promised land today may be our homes, our chapels, and our temples. Standing in holy places.

  3. 3 Brother Smyth July 3, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    The Ash article is more along the lines of where I’d go with it than the Holland one. I immediately thought of the gathering of Israel and how that has meant different things at different points in time: gathering to Nauvoo or Utah vs lengthen thy cords and strengthen thy stakes throughout the entire world. You could bring in Isaiah 54, plus perhaps a couple chapters just before and after it by tying in the tent metaphor to the reference in Ether 2:13 of them dwelling in tents. There’s an interesting post over on BoM Groupies talking about Lehi dwelling in a tent and various possible symbols related to the temple and the exodus. The brother of Jared being reminded by the Lord after he sat around for 4 years forgetting to do what he had been commanded is similar to how the Saints had to be reminded to build the temple in D&C 95, not to mention Moses having to return to the mountain to receive the lesser law of Moses and the ten commandments as they were not ready for the full Gospel at the time. Enos also comes to mind as he hadn’t been as engaged as he should have but was reminded of what he had been taught; he then prayed for forgiveness for himself, for his brethren, and then for the Lamanites, and the Lord promised that he would send forth the Book of Mormon to help them come to a knowledge of the truth.

    Forget the patriotic stuff. If you can pull together the Israelites, Nephites, Jaredites, early Saints, Isaiah, and then what that means for us today, that’s way better than singing ‘this land is your land, this land is my land…’ Post back and let us know where you went with it.

  4. 4 Matt W. July 4, 2011 at 1:19 am

    Well you could go Pioneer with it:

    Or take it from the perspective of Caleb and Joshua and Moses:

    Re- Ether and the Promised Land- The Primary Manual is probably better than the adult manual:

    If you wanted to combine the old testament promised land concept with the Book of Mormon concept, here is a bridge:

    For More General Text:

    If you like Nibley:

    I think I’d go either the zion route like Chris said, or I’d just talk about something generic like “Journeys of Faith” with going over the tumultuous oceans etc.

  5. 5 Niklas July 4, 2011 at 3:28 am

    I would simply talk about how the jaredite journey to promised land (as other journeys in scriptures) is symbol of our journey towards heaven. The promises that God has given to us are different; for jaredites there were promises of land above all lands, for us there is promises of eternal life.

  6. 6 Bryan H. July 5, 2011 at 1:57 am

    This has an interesting idea:

  7. 7 Matt W. July 5, 2011 at 4:34 pm

    Hey Eric, I think I am stuck in Moderation…

  8. 8 Swisster July 5, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    The “Promised Land” entry in Encyclopedia of Mormonism is good.

  9. 9 Eric Nielson July 6, 2011 at 8:33 am

    Thanks for the help everyone. Great links Matt.

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