Skip to main content

Gospel Study - Symbolism

I have been fascinated with symbolism for much of my adult life.  I decided that I'd do a study on symbolism for a little while.

Symbols are a timeless, universal language.

God often speaks to us through symbols.

I want to be more literate in the things of the Spirit and more fluent in the language of symbols.

Today I told my seminary students that God has given us reminders of Him and His Plan all around us.  I encouraged them to look for these reminders and symbols.

In a book by Joseph Fielding McConkie entitled Gospel Symbolism I learned that there are 12 categories (now that is symbolic) that symbols used in the scriptures fall under: objects, places, personal names, titles, animals, events, feelings, foods, persons, words, rituals, and elements.

See.  There is so many things to touch on.

I need a study!

Objects can be anything really.  Brother McConkie uses the example of an altar.  In the Bible, alters are mostly used as places for blood sacrifices..  They are like little stages for the ultimate atoning sacrifice of Christ.  Altars were also a place of peace and a place were God would manifest Himself.

Places often were named to teach us a little something.  A good example is Bethlehem.  This name means "house of bread."  The name of the town were Jesus was born testifies that it is the place from which the Bread of Life will come.

Names carry meanings.  Jesus, Joshua in Hebrew, means "Jehovah saves."  How appropriate that even His name bares testimony of His mission.

Titles, such as Christ, means "anointed one."  To be anointed is to be consecrated or set apart to sacred purposes.

My favorite animal symbol is a lamb.  I guess it is because I've heard it explained the most... how a lamb represents the Savior.

Events are harder to spot.  I guess the Sabbath Day counts as an event.  It is a day set apart to remember and to rejoice.  I love that the Sabbath is the first day of the week.  It was chosen because Christ rose on the first day of the week.  It was chosen to remind us of His atoning sacrifice  His breaking the bands of death, and His extending immortality to all mankind and eternal life to those who diligently seek it.

The feelings of peace are the feelings of God.

Yesterday I took the sacrament.  Here I was reminded of the symbolism in food... the Bread of Life.  When we seek Him we will never hunger.

Christians are a good example of Persons used as symbols.  When we follow Christ we take upon us His name and become a part of His family.

The words spoken by the Savior are symbols.  He is the Messenger of Salvation, after all.

Baptism is a ritual that carries great symbolism.... we are buried and reborn... we are washed clean with Living water...

My favorite symbolic element is light.  I circle it every time I see it in the scriptures.  Christ is the light.  Light exposes darkness.  Light always wins.  Life gives life.  Light warms.  Light is power.

All things truly testify of the Maker.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Book of Mormon Study... Title page and testimony of the witnesses

According to the Prophet Joseph Smith, “the title-page of the Book of Mormon is a literal translation, taken from the very last leaf, on the left hand side of the collection or book of plates, which contained the record which has been translated, the language of the whole running the same as all Hebrew writing in general; and that said title page is not by any means a modern composition, either of mine or of any other man who has lived or does live in this generation” (History of the Church, 1:71).


That means it’s scripture too! That is why today I start my Book of Mormon study with the title page.

I am part of the House of Israel. My children and their children are a part of the House of Israel. This Book is written for me and for them.

I love that the Title page declares that this book is a “gift”… now this book I am marking will become a “gift” for my grandson. How cool is that? I feel like Nephi, writing my testimony of Jesus Christ and of the gospel plan as I study God’s word so …

An Open Letter to Those Who Hate The School Dress Code

I have noticed a ton of resistance to dress codes in schools.  I have something to say... get over it.  
A dress code is not about body shaming.  It is not about control.  It's not about taking away individuality. The dress code is not about making social divisions.  It is not about taking away individual rights.
A dress code is about keeping a professional environment where real work happens.  Contrary to popular belief, woman don't get to wear whatever they want when ever they want in "the real world." Every profession has some kind of dress code.  Nurses, doctors, real estate brokers, vets, and even McDonald's workers have a dress code.  Even farmers and day labors wear clothing appropriate to the work they do.  School is a professional environment where the student's "job" is to be the student - to learn - and the teachers' job is to open the possibilities in young minds and to create an environment where people - all people - can learn.  Th…

Once-a-Slightly Over Month Cooking

Today may be the last day of the year, but it was the first day of the month around the Boyack house.  Today was Once-a-Month-Cooking day.  The funny thing is that it usually ends up lasting longer than a month.  Our last big cooking day lasted from September to now.  The thing is, I don't always pull from the freezer.  Weekend we cook from scratch.  However, with my voice lessons in late afternoons and sometimes play practice or performance I am too tired to think about dinner.  Making dinner ahead saved me so much money from September to Christmas that I was able to pay for half of Christmas from the savings from the food budget.  Plus, we had much healthier meals!

After collecting which recipes we wanted to make, and making a shopping list, John headed to the store around noon.  We started the cooking and assembly around 1:00 and ended all the cooking by 7:00.  In that time we made 35 dinners.  We have the fix-in's in the cupboard to make 15 more quick and easy meals.  We …