Old Testament Lesson 9: “God Will Provide Himself a Lamb”

Testing the words of LDS leaders with Biblical Truth:

March 2010

Old Testament Gospel Doctrine Teacher’s Manual

* The Whitewashing of Man—the Joseph Smith Translation of Genesis 17:17 (page 37):

• What did God reveal to Abraham in Genesis 17:15–16, 19, 21? How did Abraham respond? (See Genesis 17:17. Note that while the King James Version of the Bible says that Abraham “laughed” when he heard that Sarah would bear a son, an alternate translation of the Hebrew word is “rejoiced.” The Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible says that Abraham “rejoiced” at the news.)

Test these LDS Words with Biblical Truth:

One of the things I love about the Bible is that God doesn’t mince words when it comes to man’s sinfulness. Even Abraham and Sarah sinned. Here, simply read the context of the passages to know that Abraham truly “laughed” at God’s statement that Sarah would have a son. Had he “rejoiced”, as the JST claims, then his response to God’s message would have been seen in his words in the following passage:

“Then Abraham fell upon his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, Shall a child be born unto him that is an hundred years old? and shall Sarah, that is ninety years old, bear? And Abraham said unto God, O that Ishmael might live before thee! And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him. And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year.” Genesis 17:17-21

As well, in the next chapter we read that Sarah also “laughed”. She had the same reaction when she overheard that she would have a child. The very same Hebrew word for “laughed” is used when Sarah “laughed” in 18:12; as when Abraham “laughed” in 17:17:

“And they said unto him, Where is Sarah thy wife? And he said, Behold, in the tent. And he said, I will certainly return unto thee according to the time of life; and, lo, Sarah thy wife shall have a son. And Sarah heard it in the tent door, which was behind him. Now Abraham and Sarah were old and well stricken in age; and it ceased to be with Sarah after the manner of women. Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also? And the LORD said unto Abraham, Wherefore did Sarah laugh, saying, Shall I of a surety bear a child, which am old? Is any thing too hard for the LORD? At the time appointed I will return unto thee, according to the time of life, and Sarah shall have a son. Then Sarah denied, saying, I laughed not; for she was afraid. And he said, Nay; but thou didst laugh.” Genesis 18:9-15

Not only did Sarah laugh, she lied about doing so! It truly is a blessing to know that even Abraham and Sarah were sinners!! And, it is a blessing to know that Abraham did not become righteous by his own works. Instead, he was credited with Christ’s righteousness—through faith!!

If you would like to read more about how God views man’s sinfulness, go to this Post: “First Presidency Message: The Best Christmas Ever” written December 11, 2008; or, Click here:

Link to LDS Lesson:
https://www.lds.org/manual/old-testament-gospel-doctrine-teachers-manual/lesson-9-god-will-provide-himself-a-lamb?lang=eng