Jeremiah 4-6

The theme of Jeremiah 4-6 is a simple one, “Had you been faithful, you would have been blessed; since you have been rebellious, you will be destroyed!”  It is reminiscent of another common theme from prophets of the same era but a different continent, “Inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments ye shall prosper in the land; but inasmuch as ye will not keep my commandments ye shall be cut off from my presence” (2 Ne. 1:20)
Bruce R. McConkie
As an integral part of the whole law of Moses; as an essential part of every rite and performance of the Mosaic system; as a spoken or implied part of every commandment given to Israel; as a unifying thread woven into the whole tapestry of their society; as a divine decree, echoing and reechoing like the thunders of Sinai—stands the great Mosaic message: Keep the commandments. Keep the commandments and be blessed; disobey and be cursed. (The Mortal Messiah: From Bethlehem to Calvary, 4 vols. [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1979-1981], 1: 77)
Jeremiah 4:3 Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns
Israel’s idolatry was not getting them any blessings. Fallow ground is left idle, without seed.  The metaphor is that you aren’t going to get much of a harvest from land that hasn’t been sowed or from planting among thorns.  The passage also foreshadows the imagery of the parable of the sower (Matt. 3-9, 18-23).
Jeremiah 4:4 Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, and take away the foreskins of your heart
Gerald N. Lund
Other scriptures provide additional clarification that it was not circumcision itself but what it stood for that gave it its greatest significance. In many places the Lord speaks of true circumcision as being circumcision of the heart or, in other words, loving God and being obedient to the Spirit. The "uncircumcised of heart" are the wicked, proud, and rebellious. (See Deut. 10:16; 30:6; Jer. 4:4; Ezek. 44:7; Acts 7:51; Rom. 2:25-29; Col. 2:11.) Though a person may be circumcised in the flesh, unless he is righteous the covenant is invalidated, and the circumcision becomes profitless. Thus, circumcision was only a sign or token of what needed to happen to the inward man. If the inward change had not taken place, then circumcision was virtually meaningless. Following the atonement of Christ, the token of circumcision was no longer required of God's covenant people since baptism, the symbol of Christ's own death and resurrection, replaced it. (See Jer. 9:25-26; Acts 15:22-29; 1 Cor. 7:19; Gal. 5:1-6; Gal. 6:12-15; Philip. 3:3-4.) (Jesus Christ, Key to the Plan of Salvation [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1991], 58)
Jeremiah 4:5-6 let us go into the defenced cities
Jerusalem had a massive, protective city wall.  The surrounding villagers were called assemble themselves inside the walls for protection. So are we, “I will that my saints should be assembled upon the land of Zion,” “they shall be called stakes, for the curtains or the strength of Zion,” and “a city of refuge, a place of safety for the saints of the Most High God” (D&C 63:36; 101:21; 45:66) The walls of Jerusalem had never failed them before, but they would not be enough this time. They should have trusted in the Lord and His righteousness instead of their fortresses, wicked kings, and idol gods.
Jeremiah 4:7-8 The lion is come up from his thicket, and the destroyer of the Gentiles is on his way
Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon is the lion.  He was the “destroyer of the Gentiles” because he conquered the Gentile nations around Judah.  Jeremiah’s prophecies were not just for the Jews.  He also prophesied to the Gentile nations to warn them of this lion from the thicket:  Egypt (Jer. 46), Philistines (Jer. 47), Moab (Jer. 48), and Ammonites (Jer. 49).
Jeremiah 4:9-10 the prophets shall wonder
These are the false prophets who wonder (Jer. 28:1-2; 29:21-24).  They are caught in the awful realization that their prophecies of peace were lies. They are the ones who “greatly deceived” the people.  They lied when they said “All is well in Zion” (2 Ne. 28:21).  Nephi knew the type and condemned them, “wo be unto him that is at ease in Zion! Wo be unto him that crieth: All is well!” (2 Ne. 28:24-25).
“While true prophets cried of war and desolation, the citizens refused to take either them or their warnings seriously. Pacified by false prophets who chorused peace, they felt so secure that nine years later they pressed Zedekiah to break his oath of allegiance to Nebuchadnezzar. With that act, the countdown to the destruction of the city began.
“A grinding year-and-a-half siege preceded Jerusalem’s fiery end. As Jeremiah had predicted, thousands of citizens died by famine, fire, and sword. Jerusalem and Solomon’s magnificent temple became rubble and ashes. Zedekiah, the proud monarch, saw his sons slain, before having his eyes put out. Contrary to promises made by false prophets, tens of thousands more of Jerusalem’s citizens became Babylonian captives. The few survivors eventually fled to Egypt for safety.” (Keith H. Meservy, “Jerusalem at the Time of Lehi and Jeremiah,” Ensign, Jan. 1988, 23)
Jeremiah 4:11 a dry wind of the high places
Elsewhere, the scriptures speak of “an east wind” as a destruction from the Lord (Gen. 41:6; Isa. 27:8; Ezek. 17:10; Mosiah 7:31). While “the dry wind of the high places” is also a destructive wind, it originates from a different source—from the high places where the Jews offered to Baal (2 Kgs. 23:5-13). The poetic language reminds the Jews that their destruction comes from their own wickedness and idolatry.
“Jeremiah used the images of a lion, dry wind, clouds, earth, and crimson.  The lion was Babylon coming out of the thicket and ready for the hunt.  They dry wind was devastation and destruction of the Holy Land.  The thunder cloud was Babylon’s troops that would cover ‘the sky, and its effect would be that of a tornado.’” (Susan Easton Black, 400 Questions and Answers about the Old Testament, [American Fork, UT: Covenant Communications, 2013], 179)
Jeremiah 4:14 O Jerusalem, wash thine heart from wickedness…
Jeremiah’s theme in this prophecy is the heart:  “the heart of the king,” “the heart of the princes” (v. 9), the heart of the Lord (v. 19). The heart of the Jewish nation was failing.  Even the circumcision was to “take away the foreskins of your heart” (v. 4).  The heart was infected with wickedness, diseased from years of rebellion, and twisted from being turned toward idols.  The diagnosis was bad; the prognosis worse, for “this people hath a revolting and a rebellious heart” (Jer 5:23).
Sometimes, with wickedness that reaches to the very heart and soul (v. 18), the Lord as the Master Physician must perform a heart transplant. The Lord would rather that Jerusalem wash her “heart from wickedness,” but it wasn’t going to happen.  So the Master Physician becomes the Master Surgeon and does a heart transplant, “I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh… and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.” (Ezek. 36:26)
Russell M. Nelson
A large portion of my life’s study and research has been focused on the jewel of the human heart—a pump so magnificent that its power is almost beyond our comprehension. To control the direction of flow of blood within it, there are four important valves, pliable as a parachute and delicate as a dainty silk scarf. They open and close over one hundred thousand times a day—over thirty-six million times a year. Yet, unless altered by disease, they are so rugged that they can stand this kind of wear seemingly indefinitely. No man-made material developed thus far can be flexed so frequently and for so long without breaking.
The amount of work the heart does is amazing. Each day it pumps enough fluid to fill a 2,000-gallon tank. The work it performs daily is equivalent to lifting a 150-pound man to the top of the Empire State Building, while consuming only about four watts of energy—less than that used by a small light bulb in your home.
At the crest of the heart is an electrical generator that transmits energy down special lines, causing myriads of muscle fibers to beat in coordination and in rhythm. This synchrony would be the envy of any orchestra’s conductor.
All this power is condensed in the human heart—only about the size of one’s fist, yet energized from within by an endowment from on high. (“The Magnificence of Man,” Ensign, Jan. 1988, 65)
Jeremiah 4:15-18 From Dan, and… from mount Ephraim
The tribe of Dan settled further north than any other tribe in the land of Canaan.  Mount Ephraim is also north of Jerusalem.  Dan and mount Ephraim designate the direction from which Nebuchadnezzar will come to destroy Jerusalem with his chariots as a whirlwind and horses “swifter than eagles” (v. 13).  The “watchers come from a far country” are spies whose message for Jerusalem is not good.
Jeremiah 4:19 My bowels, my bowels! I am pained at my very heart
“From this passage one readily concludes that it pained the Lord to punish his children, even though they plainly deserved it. One finds similar divine expressions of grief in the [other] prophecies of Jeremiah, spoken more than a century later to the inhabitants of Judah: ‘For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me. Is there no balm in Gilead; is there no physician there?’ (Jer. 8:21-22; cf. 4:19-21; 10:19-21). As in the case of Hosea, one fundamental reason for God's threatened punishment in Jeremiah's day was the lack of knowing God: ‘They know not me, saith the Lord’ (Jer. 9:3), and ‘My people is foolish, they have not known me’ (Jer. 4:22). It is in latter-day scripture that the most graphic and memorable scene of God's sorrow over sin is depicted. Enoch described the following in a vision of the heavens: ‘The God of heaven looked upon the residue of the people, and he wept; and Enoch bore record of it’ (Moses 7:28).
“In each of these instances, God sorrowed for the wickedness of his children — wickedness which required a tough response on his part. Even so, it is clear from these sources that God has been pained at the prospect of punishing them. Consistently, he has been a God of love and compassion. ‘When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son. . . . It was I who taught Ephraim to walk, I took them up in my arms; but they did not know that I healed them. I led them with cords of compassion, with the bands of love’ (Hosea 11:1, Hosea 11:43-4, RSV).” (Kent P. Jackson, ed., Studies in Scripture, Vol. 4: 1 Kings to Malachi [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1993], 67)
Jeremiah 4:22 they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge
“What, exactly, led to the fiery destruction of Jerusalem? Jeremiah tells us that its inhabitants had become so sensual and materialistic that they had lost all sense of divine values: ‘They are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.’ (Jer. 4:22.)
“’They be all adulterers,’ Jeremiah said about the mores of that generation. (Jer. 9:2.) They ‘assembled themselves by troops in the harlots’ houses.’ Like well-fed stallions, ‘every one neighed after his neighbour’s wife.’ (Jer. 5:7–8.)
“He who delights ‘in the chastity of women,’ to whom whoredoms are an abomination (Jacob 2:28), saw how the wickedness of adulterous husbands caused anguish to wives whose love and trust had been shattered. He beheld ‘the sorrow, and heard the mourning of the daughters of [his] people in the land of Jerusalem.’ (Jacob 2:31.) Consequently, the Lord led Lehi’s group ‘out of the land of Jerusalem … that [he] might raise up … a righteous branch from the fruit of the loins of Joseph.’ (Jacob 2:25.)
“The people’s preoccupation with sensuality was matched by their covetousness and dishonesty. Jeremiah lamented, ‘From the least of them even unto the greatest of them every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.’ (Jer. 6:13; Jeremiah referred to false prophets simply as prophets, as the context makes clear.) He challenged anyone who doubted his words to search the streets and plazas of Jerusalem to see ‘if there be any that executeth judgment, that seeketh the truth.’ (Jer. 5:1.)” (Keith H. Meservy, “Jerusalem at the Time of Lehi and Jeremiah,” Ensign, Jan. 1988, 23–24)
Jeremiah 4:23 I beheld the earth, and lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.
The darkness that is soon to envelop the city of Jerusalem is compared to the darkness and void in the day of creation, “the earth was without form and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep” (Gen.1:2).  It can’t get much darker than that!  The moon hasn’t been created; the sun has no light; and the stars have not been made to appear.
The reference also reminds the Jews that the God they are rejecting is the very Creator of heaven and earth—the same God who said “Let there be light” (Gen. 1:14) could say to Jerusalem, “Let there be darkness.” In the beginning, God saw that the light “was good” (Gen. 1:18). In the end, the Jews would see that the darkness “was bad.”
Jeremiah 4:27 The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end
The Lord has to save a remnant.  He will not kill every Jewish soul.  Instead, he will leave the poor in the land of Jerusalem.  The most righteous, He will take to Babylon for 70 years. He will not make a full end of the nation because he has promised the patriarchs and the prophets that he would redeem their posterity in the latter days. Jeremiah revealed, “Nevertheless in those days, saith the Lord, I will not make a full end with you.” And so, Nebuchadnezzar’s instruction is to “destroy; but make not a full end” (Jer. 5:10, 18).
As usual, Isaiah said it best:  “Except the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah” (Isa 1:9). 
Jeremiah 5:1-5 see now… if ye can find a man… that executeth judgment, that seeketh the truth
“The Lord promised to forgive Jerusalem if the prophet could find one faithful person in the city.  The terms are reminiscent of those given to Abraham in the case of Sodom (Gen. 1832), when ten righteous people would have spared the city.  Jerusalem was given more generous terms yet could not meet them.” (The Apologetics Study Bible, T. Cabal [Nashville: Holman Bible Publishers, 2007], 1094)
Jeremiah 5:5 I will get me unto the great men, and will speak unto them; for they have known the way of the Lord
“The failure of Jeremiah to find such a person [one that executeth judgment and seeketh truth] has been pointed to by some as raising a question about the Book of Mormon. If Lehi, the first prophet of the Book of Mormon, was in the city, why couldn't Jeremiah find him? There are at least two possible answers to this question. First, Lehi did not live in Jerusalem. This is shown by the account of Lehi's sons returning to Jerusalem to obtain the plates of brass. After Laban refused to give them the plates freely, they left Jerusalem and went to the land of their father's inheritance to get gold and silver and all manner of precious riches (which their father had left behind when they fled out of the land) in order that they might purchase the plates. Secondly. Lehi had left because he knew that Jerusalem would be destroyed for having rejected the words of the prophets (see 1 Nephi 3:1-18). Note that the word prophets is plural. Nephi had earlier recorded that there were many prophets testifying of the destruction of Jerusalem in the first year of Zedekiah's reign, when his father received his calling (see 1 Nephi 1:4). This is supported by 2 Chronicles 36:14-16. Jeremiah's record repeatedly refers to the Lord's sending his servants the prophets to warn the people of the land (see Jeremiah 25:3-4; 26:5). Obviously, those whom Jeremiah was invited to seek out to obtain a pardon for the city did not include the prophets whom the Lord had sent to warn Jerusalem. (Perhaps they too dwelt outside the city.) Furthermore, this revelation was probably given considerably earlier than Lehi's call; but even if it were not, there is ample evidence that we should exclude Lehi in considering Jeremiah's failure to find a righteous man in the city.” (Monte S. Nyman, The Words of Jeremiah [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1982], 30 - 31)
Jeremiah 5:6 a lion out of the forest shall slay them
The lion is a symbol for Babylon.
Babylonian Lion.jpg
Ancient glazed tiles from the gates of ancient Babylon (Iraq) depict a lion.
“The Lion is the symbol of Babylon, and represents Ishtar, the goddess of fertility, love and war. Meant not only to symbolize Babylon, but to instill fear in enemies, it seems fitting that a single stone lion, albeit poorly preserved, is the only true remainder of Babylon that stands in Iraq today.
“Some 120 lions were created in polychrome relief tiles for the processional way towards the northern entrance to Babylon, the Gate of Ishtar, as well as Nebuchadnezzar's Throne Room. Several museums around the world are in possession of these polychrome lions.” (
Jeremiah 5:7 they then committed adultery, and assembled themselves by troops in the harlots’ houses
Standing room only in the brothels of Jerusalem!  That is the image—men standing in line, waiting for their turn, apparently without the least bit of shame or embarrassment.  It’s a damning scene indicating the institutionalization of adultery and prostitution.
Jeremiah 5:12 neither shall evil come upon us; neither shall we see sword or famine
Jerusalem had a glorious history.  To this point, no enemy had ever taken the city.  This left the inhabitants with a false sense of security.  Besides this, the people had a false sense of their own righteousness imagining that they would never be punished by sword or famine.  Laman and Lemuel shared this delusional view.  They didn’t “believe that Jerusalem, that great city, could be destroyed” (1 Ne. 2:13), imagining to themselves “that the people who were in the land of Jerusalem were a righteous people” (1 Ne. 17:22). On both points, they were dead wrong.
Jeremiah 5:14 I will make my words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them
Jeremiah is famous for being the prophet in whom the word was in him as a fire in his bones, “his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not stay” silent (Jer. 20:9).  The Lord also made the words fire in his mouth as well. The imagery is that Jeremiah was consumed with the word of God, it was in his heart; it burned in his bones, and came out his mouth. Better than anyone else, he knew the sensation of the burning bosom (D&C 9:8).  The only way to quench the fire was to preach the word. 
If his life was in danger before his message was presented, then he would become as Nephi or Abinadi before his enemies.  Nephi said, “I am filled with the power of God, even unto the consuming of my flesh; and whoso shall lay his hands upon me shall wither even as a dried reed” (1 Ne. 17:48).  Abinadi said, “Touch me not, for God shall smite you if ye lay your hands upon me, for I have not delivered the message which the Lord sent me to deliver… And he spake with power and authority from God” (Mosiah 13:3, 6)
Jeremiah 5:19 As ye have… served strange gods in your land, so shall ye serve strangers in a land that is not yours
A Shakespearian tragedy!  The Israelites had been brought by the hand of the Lord out of Egypt to live in freedom as an independent nation serving the only true God.  But they would not worship the only true God, and as a result, ended right back where they started—as servants in a foreign land.  There is a tragic fairness to the Lord’s punishments, “if you won’t serve God in this land, you will have to serve others in another.”
At the dedication of the Las Vegas Temple, President Gordon B. Hinckley pleaded, “We long for the day when we may be worthy to look upon thy face. Keep us from the decay and servitude which come from sin. Bless us with the light and freedom which come of righteousness.” (Judy C. Olsen, “News of the Church,” Ensign, Mar. 1990, 75)
Jeremiah 5:21 O foolish people… which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not
Isaiah expressed the same idea, “Go and tell this people, Hear ye indeed, but understand not; and see ye indeed, but perceive not. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and convert and be healed.” (Isa 6:9)
Spencer W. Kimball
If a man receives the Lord, he believes in Him, lives His commandments, and performs the ordinances which He has required.
Are you willing to jeopardize your eternities, your great continuing happiness, your privilege to see God and dwell in his presence? For the want of investigation and study and contemplation, or because of prejudice, misunderstanding, or lack of knowledge, are you willing to forgo these great blessings and privileges?... Our friends, please do not ignore this call. I beg of you, open your eyes and see; unstop your ears and hear. (Ensign, Feb. 1995, 45)
Jeremiah 5:31 the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so
Erastus Snow
Was it simply because of the sins of their rulers and chief priests, or was it because of the general corruption, unbelief, and wickedness of the whole people? I answer, it was not only the wickedness of their rulers and the corruption and hypocrisy of their priests, but of the whole people, priests and rulers included. In the language of one of the prophets, their teachers taught for hire; their judges judged for reward; their prophets divined for money, [Micah 3:11] and “my people love to have it so, and what shall be the end thereof?” [Jer. 5:31]  The people had lifted themselves up in pride; they loved gold and silver and precious things, and set up gods whom they might adore. If they did not actually set up graven images and gods of wood and stone, they set up teachers and priests like unto themselves. Their judges and priests took bribes, [1 Sam. 8:3] [Isa. 33:15] [Ps. 26:10] and their public servants could be bought with money. (Journal of Discourses, 13:7)
Jeremiah 6:1 O ye children of Benjamin
After King Solomon, the 10 northern tribes of Israel decided not to acknowledge Solomon’s son Rehoboam as their king (1 Kgs. 12).  They set up their own king and divided from the tribe of Judah.  Benjamin, one of the smallest tribes and situated geographically right next to Jerusalem, sided with the tribe of Judah and remained part of the Kingdom of Judah. Rehoboam offered them protection and established the cities of Bethlehem and Tekoa (2 Chron. 11:5-12).
The tribe of Benjamin was wise to side with Judah over Israel.  The northern kingdom was ruled by more wicked kings and suffered destruction and, as a result, suffered scattering earlier than Judah.  But now, the Day of Judgment is come upon Benjamin as well as Judah.  His children were just as wicked and idolatrous.  Their fate would be the same; they are warned to run for their lives.
Jeremiah 6:6 Hew ye down trees, and cast a mount against Jerusalem
NOW the king of Babylon was very intent and earnest upon the siege of Jerusalem; and he erected towers upon great banks of earth, and from them repelled those that stood upon the walls; he also made a great number of such banks round about the whole city, whose height was equal to those walls…  And this siege they endured for eighteen months, until they were destroyed by the famine, and by the darts which the enemy threw at them from the towers. (Antiquities of the Jews, Book X, 8:1)
Jeremiah 6:11 the fury of the Lord… for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days
Now in the ninth year of the reign of Zedekiah, on the tenth day of the tenth month, the king of Babylon made a second expedition against Jerusalem, and lay before it eighteen months, and besieged it with the utmost application. There came upon them also two of the greatest calamities at the same time that Jerusalem was besieged, a famine and a pestilential distemper, and made great havoc of them. And though the prophet Jeremiah was in prison, he did not rest, but cried out, and proclaimed aloud, and exhorted the multitude to open their gates, and admit the king of Babylon, for that if they did so, they should be preserved, and their whole families; but if they did not so, they should be destroyed; and he foretold, that if any one [stayed] in the city, he should certainly perish by one of these ways,—either be consumed by the famine, or slain by the enemy's sword; but that if he would flee to the enemy, he should escape death. Yet did not these rulers who heard believe him, even when they were in the midst of their sore calamities; but they came to the king, and in their anger informed him what Jeremiah had said, and accused him, and complained of the prophet as of a madman, and one that disheartened their minds. (Antiquities of the Jews, Book X, 7:4)
Jeremiah 6:19 I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts
Bruce R. McConkie
Evil thoughts are sinful. (Prov. 15:26; 24:9.) They are an abomination in themselves, and they lead to further wickedness. Evils are not committed until they have been thought out in the heart. "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness." (Mark 7:21-22; Matt. 15:19; Luke 6:45.) "Behold, I will bring evil upon this people," saith the Lord, "even the fruit of their thoughts." (Jer. 6:19.) It was only after "God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually" (Gen. 6:5), that he sent the flood of Noah to cleanse the earth.
On the other hand, "The thoughts of the righteous are right." (Prov. 12:5.) They are at the root of all righteous action; wise words and deeds flow from them; and a righteous judgment will be given because of them. Men are what their thoughts make them. "As he thinketh in his heart, so is he." (Prov. 23:7.) Our thoughts will reward or condemn us before the judgment bar. (Alma 12:12-14.) The righteous and the wicked are divided by their thoughts, and the secret thoughts of men will be revealed in the judgment. (D. & C. 88:109.) Righteous thoughts lead to salvation, wicked thoughts to damnation. (Mormon Doctrine, 2d ed. [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1966], 792)
Jeremiah 6:20 your burnt offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices sweet unto me
Hath the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams (1 Sam. 15:22)
   To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats.
   When ye come to appear before me, who hath required this at your hand, to tread my courts?
   Bring no more vain oblations; incense is an abomination unto me; the new moons and sabbaths, the calling of assemblies, I cannot away with; it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting.
   Your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them.
   And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. (Isa. 1:11-15)
Ted E. Brewerton
Today President Kimball is the Lord’s mouthpiece on the earth, and when he says we should do certain things, even small things, what is our answer? For example, if he says clean up your yard—do it. If he says paint your fence—do it. If he says one more endowment per person per year—do it. If he says at least one more couple per ward in the mission field—do it. If he says to avoid commercial purchases whenever possible on Sunday—do it. What blessings we must impede through lack of full obedience! (“Obedience—Full Obedience,” Ensign, May 1981, 70)