The Ancient of Days

With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding.

Job 12:12

There are many reasons for us to love and respect Adam and Eve.

  1. As the first man and woman on the earth, they pioneered the way for us, learning by experience so many things which we take for granted.
  2. They made our mortal experience possible, making the decision which introduced death and sorrow into the world, and thus providing the appropriate setting for us to grow and progress. (See 2 Nephi 2:25.)

Here’s a third reason: As the original patriarch and matriarch, they stand as the head of the human family. Just as we honor our parents and grandparents, we should recognize and appreciate our earliest ancestors.

Nephi referred to Adam and Eve as “our first parents” (1 Nephi 5:11). Many subsequent prophets in the Book of Mormon used the same phrase. (See 2 Nephi 2:15, 2 Nephi 9:9, Mosiah 16:3, Alma 12:26, Alma 42:2, 7, Helaman 5:6, Helaman 6:26, Ether 8:25.)

Adam lived to be 930 years old. (See Genesis 5:3-5.) Three years prior to his death, he gathered seven generations of his posterity in a valley called Adam-ondi-Ahman, and he blessed them. At that time, the Lord acknowledged Adam’s place as the father of the human family: “I have set thee to be at the head,” He said; “a multitude of nations shall come of thee, and thou art a prince over them forever” (Doctrine and Covenants 107:53-56).

The prophet Daniel referred to Adam as “the Ancient of Days.” He prophesied that Adam would one day return to earth, sit on a throne, talk with the Savior, and provide leadership for the saints of God. (See Daniel 7:9, 13, 22.)

Where will this happen? The same place where Adam blessed his posterity before his death. As the Lord revealed to Joseph Smith:

Spring Hill [in Davies County, Missouri] is named by the Lord Adam-ondi-Ahman, because, said he, it is the place where Adam shall come to visit his people, or the Ancient of Days shall sit, as spoken of by Daniel the prophet.

Doctrine and Covenants 116:1

Wherever Adam and Eve go, they inspire respect and admiration. Here is how Joseph F. Smith described seeing them in a vision of the spirit world on October 3, 1918:

Among the great and mighty ones who were assembled in this vast congregation of the righteous were Father Adam, the Ancient of Days and father of all,

And our glorious Mother Eve, with many of her faithful daughters who had lived through the ages and worshiped the true and living God.

Doctrine and Covenants 138:38

Today, I will remember my first parents, Adam and Eve. I will be grateful for their courage and wisdom, and I will strive to live in a way that brings honor to them, just as I do for my parents.

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