Be Fruitful and Multiply

The first commandment given to Adam and Eve given in the Garden was to ‘be fruitful’ and to ‘multiply, and replenish the earth.1 Understanding how they would accomplish this is no mystery, and that commandment is still in force today.2 Adam and Eve were married by God, and He ‘called their name Adam.’3

Denver Snuffer addressed chastity on his blog where he wrote the following, “When they were expelled from the Garden, Adam “knew his wife” which is a euphemism. The word “know” or “knew” is a reference made throughout the Old and New Testaments to sexual intercourse. As a consequence of this Eve became pregnant. (Gen. 4:1)”4

I agree with Denver that “know” or “knew” is a euphemism, but I think there is more to explore with the word as it relates to covenants.5 “To Know” suggests a special relationship between the two parties. I know Denver understands this, but his audience at the time was a group of young men.

The Hebrew word yada translates “to know” or yadah “to revere or worship with extended hands”.6 It is a very intimate relationship, not just a sexual one. In other words, “to know” someone suggests an intimate covenant relationship.

Another occurrence of this covenantal knowledge is later on in chapter five when it states, “For, from the days of Cain, there was a secret combination, and their works were in the dark, and they knew every man his brother.” (Moses 5:51) Leaning only upon the euphemism would suggest that is a reference to homosexuality. Many have interpreted this verse in this manner, however I believe it only informs the reader that they had covenant agreements and they were intimate or familiar (familial) exchanges taking place.

How Knoweth a Man

In Isaiah we also find, “The ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master’s crib: but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider.” (Isaiah 1:3) When a person purchases an animal there is an agreement made. The animal now belongs to the owner, the owner now cares for the animal under their stewardship. The animal provides for the owner in some form or another, while the owner feeds, shelters, and cares for the animal. The “ass [knows] his master’s crib” because they are now raised and taken care of in the “master’s” home, place, or crib.

Would a farmer ever consider taking another farmers ox to labor for himself? No. What if the neighbors donkey wandered onto his property, would the farmer keep him and feed him along with his own animals? No. A farmer will not take that which is not his own. He would be required to make agreements before borrowing or purchasing an animal. A wandering animal can take food from the animals already in care, and pose other dangers to the animals, the farmer would be obligated to protect the animals he already owns. A wandering animal does not know the intentions of the farmer, nor can the farmer trust the animal that he does not intimately know.

This is how “the ox knoweth his owner” because their is an agreement in place, a covenant that protects, and blesses both parties. “For how knoweth a man the master whom he has not served, and who is a stranger unto him, and is far from the thoughts and intents of his heart? And again, doth a man take an ass which belongeth to his neighbor, and keep him? I say unto you, Nay; he will not even suffer that he shall feed among his flocks, but will drive him away, and cast him out. I say unto you, that even so shall it be among you if ye know not the name by which ye are called.” (Mosiah 5:13–14)

Now that we’ve established the phrase “to know” intimates a covenant relationship, let’s look at what such covenants can produce. How do these relationships bear fruit?

Multiplication and Division

When a seed is planted the ground must be divided. As the seed germinates it swells. Once it enlarges, it divides the shell. The seed sprouts and begins to multiply. the earth again divides. The roots shoot downward dividing the earth even more. The plant multiplies. Branches form. The plant becomes fertile. Bees and other insects help pollinate the plant. Fruit begins to grow. After many days of water, nutrients, and sunlight the fruit is ready. Each of these steps along the path are necessary to arriving at the desired result. Fruit.

In our family giant sunflowers have been our favorite plant in the garden. It’s quite amazing to think that a single tiny seed can produce so much. A single seed will produce well over 1,000 seeds. If all 1,000+ seeds were planted the following year they could produce over 1,000,000 seeds. What a testimony of our Father’s plan!

There are those plants that do not produce however. If there is a lack of sunlight, or water, or nutrition among a variety of other factors, a plant will not bear fruit. (Matt 13:3–23) How frustrating it can be when you put so much effort into a plant only to see your labors are fruitless.7 What good is a tree that does not bear fruit?8 It is sad to think we have labored in vain.9

So it will be if we do not connect to the True Vine.10 We will not know Him.11 We will be barren, fruitless trees.12 What good are we? What will He say to us? Does this knowledge imply a relationship?13

The Fruit of the Womb

Adam and Eve were in a covenant relationship, the fruit of his loins, and the fruit of her womb were displayed by the child(ren) she bore.14 The symbols are all around us. When a man and a woman are married, they consummate the marriage. The man divides the woman. Blood is exchanged. A covenant is cut. A seed divides the egg. They become one. The cells multiply. New life begins. The fruit grows. A mother labors. The child divides the woman. A covenant is cut. Blood is exchanged. Her labor bears fruit.

The man divides the woman.

Blood is exchanged.

A covenant is cut.

A seed divides the egg.

They become one.

The cells multiply.

New life begins.

The fruit grows.

A mother labors.

The child divides the woman.

A covenant is cut.

Blood is exchanged.

Her labor bears fruit.

Become Fruit

Our Heavenly Father desires Fruit.15 He desires “Sons.”16 He sent His Son to Labor in the vineyard.17 There are others who will work with Him.18 We must connect to the True Vine.19

So how do we connect to the True Vine? How do we make intimate covenant relationships with Him? Our salvation depends upon connecting to Him. I do not want to be hewn down and cast off into the fire!20 We must be born again.21 A covenant must happen, or a cutting, or a grafting in.22

We must bring forth fruit meet for repentance.23 We must work, works of righteousness. We must be born again.

Yea, he saith: Come unto me and ye shall partake of the fruit of the tree of life; yea, ye shall eat and drink of the bread and the waters of life freely; Yea, come unto me and bring forth works of righteousness, and ye shall not be hewn down and cast into the fire— For behold, the time is at hand that whosoever bringeth forth not good fruit, or whosoever doeth not the works of righteousness, the same have cause to wail and mourn. (Alma 5:34–36)

 

And the Lord said unto me: Marvel not that all mankind, yea, men and women, all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, must be born again; yea, born of God, changed from their carnal and fallen state, to a state of righteousness, being redeemed of God, becoming his sons and daughters; And thus they become new creatures; and unless they do this, they can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God. I say unto you, unless this be the case, they must be cast off; and this I know, because I was like to be cast off. (Mosiah 27:25–27)

Our rebirth, when complete, will result in us being redeemed. We will be fruit worth laying up against the season. We will be worth preservation. We will be a son or daughter. Like a newborn child receives the name of his father, we too will receive a new name from our new Father. (Mosiah 5:7–15)

And now, because of the covenant which ye have made ye shall be called the children of Christ, his sons, and his daughters; for behold, this day he hath spiritually begotten you; for ye say that your hearts are changed through faith on his name; therefore, ye are born of him and have become his sons and his daughters. And under this head ye are made free, and there is no other head whereby ye can be made free. There is no other name given whereby salvation cometh; therefore, I would that ye should take upon you the name of Christ, all you that have entered into the covenant with God that ye should be obedient unto the end of your lives. (Mosiah 5:7–8)

This process of rebirth has three parts or phases in order to be complete. One cannot “enter into the Lord’s rest” without completing the journey back to Him.

“Wherefore teach it unto your children, that all men, everywhere, must repent, or they can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God, for no unclean thing can dwell there, or dwell in his presence; for, in the language of Adam, Man of Holiness is his name, and the name of his Only Begotten is the Son of Man, even Jesus Christ, a righteous Judge, who shall come in the meridian of time. Therefore I give unto you a commandment, to teach these things freely unto your children, saying: That by reason of transgression cometh the fall, which fall bringeth death, and inasmuch as ye were born into the world by water, and blood, and the spirit, which I have made, and so became of dust a living soul, even so ye must be born again into the kingdom of heaven, of water, and of the Spirit, and be cleansed by blood, even the blood of mine Only Begotten; that ye might be sanctified from all sin, and enjoy the words of eternal life in this world, and eternal life in the world to come, even immortal glory; For by the water ye keep the commandment; by the Spirit ye are justified, and by the blood ye are sanctified;” (Moses 6:57–60)

The birth process requires water, spirit, and blood in order to be complete. You cannot be truly born of God without the entire process occurring. I will cover these topics in greater depth and link them here later on. Topics will include the Born Again Process, the Tree of Life, and many other topics related to covenants.

Covenant Relationships Bear Fruit

Any time we enter a covenant, it will bear fruit, whether it be good fruit or wild fruit depends upon who we make that covenant with. The idea that these relationships bear fruit comes from intimacy, any relationship we enter will eventually bear fruit. The earth is a testimony of this miracle. Each of us exist because of covenant relationships bearing fruit.

Our responsibility is to seek Him. “Our Lord is a Man of covenants. Our Lord enters into covenants on a regular basis. To know Him is to covenant with Him.”24 He desires to make covenants with us. If we hear His voice, accept His offer, enter in and stay true, we will bear fruit, we will be fruit. He is our Lord, and Master of the vineyard. Come unto Him.25

“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” (John 17:3)

 

  1. “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” (Gen 1:28, Moses 2:28)
  2. “The first commandment that God gave to Adam and Eve pertained to their potential for parenthood as husband and wife. We declare that God’s commandment for His children to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force.” The Family: A Proclamation to the World
  3. “In the image of his own body, male and female, created he them, and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created and became living souls in the land upon the footstool of God.” (Moses 6:9)
  4. A lesson to the priests, Denver Snuffer
  5. Berit – to cut a covenant
  6. Strongs Concordance, Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary of the Old Testament. 3034, 3045
  7. “What could have been done more to my vineyard that I have not done in it? Wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes it brought forth wild grapes.” (2 Ne 15:4)

    “And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard wept, and said unto the servant: What could I have done more for my vineyard?” (Jacob 5:41,47,49)

  8. “And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.” (Matt 3:10)

    “And again I say unto you, the Spirit saith: Behold, the ax is laid at the root of the tree; therefore every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit shall be hewn down and cast into the fire, yea, a fire which cannot be consumed, even an unquenchable fire. Behold, and remember, the Holy One hath spoken it.” (Alma 5:52)

  9. “Then I said, I have labored in vain, I have spent my strength for naught and in vain; surely my judgment is with the Lord, and my work with my God.” (1 Ne 21:4)
  10. “I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit he taketh away: and every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit.” (John 15:1–2)
  11. “¶ Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” (Matt 7:21–23)
  12. “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.” (Matt 7:15–20)
  13. “For how knoweth a man the master whom he has not served, and who is a stranger unto him, and is far from the thoughts and intents of his heart?” (Mosiah 5:13)
  14. “And Adam knew his wife, and she bare unto him sons and daughters, and they began to multiply and to replenish the earth. (Moses 5:2)
  15. “And behold, saith the Lord of the vineyard, I take away many of these young and tender branches, and I will graft them whithersoever I will; and it mattereth not that if it so be that the root of this tree will perish, I may preserve the fruit thereof unto myself; wherefore, I will take these young and tender branches, and I will graft them whithersoever I will.” (Jacob 5:8)
  16. “Behold, thou art one in me, a son of God; and thus may all become my sons. Amen.” (Moses 6:68)
  17. “And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard, and also the servant, went down into the vineyard to labor. And it came to pass that the servant said unto his master: Behold, look here; behold the tree.” (Jacob 5:16)
  18. “And the Lord of the vineyard said unto them: Go to, and labor in the vineyard, with your might. For behold, this is the last time that I shall nourish my vineyard; for the end is nigh at hand, and the season speedily cometh; and if ye labor with your might with me ye shall have joy in the fruit which I shall lay up unto myself against the time which will soon come.

    And it came to pass that the servants did go and labor with their mights; and the Lord of the vineyard labored also with them; and they did obey the commandments of the Lord of the vineyard in all things.” (Jacob 5:71–72)

  19. “I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.” (John 15:1)

    “That they might not be hardened against the word, that they might not be unbelieving, and go on to destruction, but that they might receive the word with joy, and as a branch be grafted into the true vine, that they might enter into the rest of the Lord their God.” (Alma 16:17) see also (1 Ne 15:15–16)

  20. “Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.” (Matt 7:19)
  21. “Yea, come unto me and bring forth works of righteousness, and ye shall not be hewn down and cast into the fire” (Alma 5:35)
  22. see (Alma 16:17) (1 Nephi 15:16) (1 Nephi 10:14)
  23. “And now, my brethren, I would that ye should humble yourselves before God, and bring forth fruit meet for repentance, that ye may also enter into that rest.” (Alma 13:13)
  24. Be of Good Cheer, Be of Good Courage Denver Snuffer 9-10-13, Lecture 1 Boise, Idaho
  25. “Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.

    And again, if ye by the grace of God are perfect in Christ, and deny not his power, then are ye sanctified in Christ by the grace of God, through the shedding of the blood of Christ, which is in the covenant of the Father unto the remission of your sins, that ye become holy, without spot.” (Moroni 10:32–33)