. "292 The Septuagint suggests that they were having a sex orgy, and most scholars and commentaries agree that this is the case.293. (John 18:11). He is first mentioned in the twenty second chapter of the Book of Numbers.278, Originally Baal was the son of Dagon, but once his cult succeeded in becoming strong he was written into the mythologies as though he was one of El's sons.279 . He descended to subject Himself to the will of the Father, suffering Himself to be tempted, mocked, scourged, cast out, and disowned, even though He was all-powerful. Who can measure the worth of careful and deep reflection upon the things of God? At any rate, God can say the same thing twice, if he so chooses, even if critics of the Book of Mormon don't believe so. . The Tree of Life vision is a lens through which Nephi’s visions are seen in the chapters of 1 Nephi 11-14. (Acts 17:28-29) All this fits in perfectly with the old patriarchal religion, for not only was El declared to be the Father of all the gods in heaven, He was also believed to be the Father of all mankind on earth.263, In ancient Canaanite texts it is attested that El and Asherah worship was associated with images or idols and the Bible indicates that the Patriarchs made use of these in their cultic rituals. Images to Asherah were erected all over the hill country, almost as it were under every green tree, and whole communities would go up to these altars and have an orgy.275, It is in this area that there was a great distinction between the religion of the Patriarchs and that of the Canaanites. Moses' response to what he found taking place as he descended the mount is found in the book of Exodus: "Who is for Yahweh? Plainly, such expressions as being filled with the Holy Ghost, and His falling upon persons, have reference to the powers and influences that emanate from God, and which are characteristic of Him; for the Holy Ghost may in this way operate simultaneously upon many persons even though they be widely separated, whereas the actual person of the Holy Ghost cannot be in more than one place at a time." He was told that it was written, "And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel." This association of the mother of God with the date palm and the image of the mother nursing the god/king is also one of Near Eastern origin. M. Gawain Wells, “The Savior and the Children in 3 Nephi,” Journal of Book of Mormon Studies 14, no. . The practice of drawing parallels between current and ancient history is well documented in Alan Goff's article "Boats, Beginnings, and Repetitions,". Significantly, though, it was only when she appeared with a baby and was identified as "the mother of the Son of God" that Nephi grasped the tree's meaning. . They were portrayed in sexual embrace, and it is thought by many that their purpose was to symbolize what in accordance with their own law, they could not portray through the use of an image of Yahweh/El and Asherah.299 [Fred C. Collier, ""The Common Origin of Ancient Hebrew/Pagan Religion and the Demise of the Hebrew Goddess," in Doctrine of the Priesthood, Vol. The traditional Mormon view is that Nephi quoted Isaiah 48 and 49 from the brass plates (see 1 Nephi 5:11-13 for the narrative's summary of the contents of the brass plates), with various explanations for why the wording of the quoted material follows the King James Version text so closely. According to Parpola, "a perfect king was two thirds god and one third man . Of course, Mary, the virgin girl of Nazareth seen by Nephi, was not literally Asherah. The Valley of Lemuel (proposed Wadi Tayyib al-Ism) is only a little over 30 miles from a proposed candidate for Mount Horeb (Sinai) in Arabia. ", It is [Fred Collier's] opinion that the real cause for offense on this occasion is to be found in the nature of the celebration which they held the following day in honor of Yahweh/El. Saints have struggled for ages to be worthy of the love of God. . According to Assyrian royal inscriptions, kings were called and predestined to their office from the beginning of time.". It Is the Son of God (Potter): While living in the valley of Lemuel, Lehi had a dream in which he saw a tree with fruit that was "most sweet, above all that [he] ever before tasted" (1 Nephi 8:10-12). Come, Follow Me Daily Study Guide for the week of January 20-26, 2020 covering 1 Nephi 11-15. . According to McConkie and Millet, indeed Christ is God, the God of creation, the God of Israel, and the Father of salvation. (1 Nephi 11:22-23). [Donna B. Nielsen, Beloved Bridegroom: Finding Christ in Ancient Jewish Marriage and Family Customs. . Clearly, the answer to his question about the meaning of the tree lies in the virgin mother with her child. ), "The gigantic, global collapse that is yet to come will not be that of a failing stock market, but the fall of hardened mind-sets and collective pride when it all finally tumbles. The river was filthy and is representative of the depths of hell. January 20–26 1 Nephi 11–15 “Armed with Righteousness and the Power of God” Read 1 Nephi 11–15 with the children you teach in mind, and record any impressions you receive. 2, 2000, pp. , there is a footnote in which Peterson tries to disassociate himself from any false doctrine that might be implied by his article. . 1, p. 7], Terryl L. Givens notes that in the 1837 edition, the words "Son of" were inserted before the Deity title in four verses: 1 Nephi 11:18, 11:21; 11:32, and 13:40. . . [Hugh W. Nibley. It is by the justice of the Eternal God that the wicked (Nephites) must be separated from the righteous and suffer their just rewards by being cast into the depths of hell represented by the filthy water. What was originally intended to be reserved for the marriage bed began to be passed out indiscriminately in public affairs which were nothing less than a communal sex orgy. [See the commentary on 1 Nephi 14:29]. . The Spirit continued, "Behold, the virgin whom thou seest is the mother of the Son of God, after the manner of the flesh" (1 Nephi 11:18). Moreover, if Moses was a type of Christ, then Jesus possibly visited the site of Sinai during his sojourn in the wilderness. It is found in the twenty first chapter of Genesis, where it is stated that Abraham planted an grove, and called upon Jehovah the Everlasting El. . . [Alan C. Miner, Personal Notes], The first edition of the Book of Mormon (1830) reads as follows: "Behold, the virgin whom thou seest is. This is in sharp contrast to the religion of abstract monotheism which, as scholars have discovered, did not come into existence until the time of the Greek philosophers who first invented it.257 In fact abstract monotheism or so called pure monotheism of any kind is entirely foreign to the Bible258 Even in Isaiah there is plenty that remains from the old religion of the Patriarchs.259. Regarding biblical parallels, especially as they might relate to "an exceedingly high mountain" such as Mount Sinai, it is interesting that there are many parallels between Christ and Elijah. In the early part of that vision, on two different occasions, the angelic messenger used an unusual phrase--"the condescension of God" (1 Nephi 11:15-16; 11:26). For much of the world's history, man has had to accept these statements basically on faith, for as we look up in the heavens with the naked eye, we can see approximately six thousand stars. Allen & David Richardson and Anthony Bentley note that Book of Mormon critics have often charged that Joseph Smith was an amateur fraud and that he plagiarized many biblical stories and placed them in the Book of Mormon. The vastness of space is such that normal measurements do not suffice to describe the distances between stars and galaxies. "298, Reference is made to the male and female Cherubim which were found in the Temple at Jerusalem at the time of its destruction. Finally El even lost Asherah to Baal, who took her for his wife.280 Thus all over the hill country in Canaan, there were stone pillars erected to Baal with an image of Asherah standing at his side, and all the communities in Canaan would go up to these and in the process of worshiping Asherah and Baal commit whoredom.281, When God first appeared to Moses in the desert He identified Himself as "the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob." After rehearsing the whole history, Patai summarized his findings as follows: We find that the worship of Asherah, which had been popular among the Hebrew tribes for three centuries, was introduced into the Jerusalem Temple by King Rehoboam, the son of Solomon, in or about 928 B.C. And yet he endured it with complete patience. . This is the tree of life, and it is right over the main shrine (this is where the Shrine of the Torah was) of this very ancient synagogue--the oldest Jewish church we know of. When teaching these chapters it is good to discuss the meaning of who Jesus is at this point. In other words, the Nehushtan had an illustrious pedigree entirely within the religious world of Israel, and there is no reason to believe that the, was any different in this respect. 19-20, 22] [See the commentary on Alma 7:10; Alma 39:3]. An evidence that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church is the fact that the ancient Americans also believed in a Mother in Heaven. It is also mentioned in an early poem by Eliza R. Snow called "O May Father," which was alter set to music and has become a favorite LDS hymn.303, An evidence that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church is the fact that the ancient Americans also believed in a Mother in Heaven. 16-18] [See the commentary on 1 Nephi 13:40], Gerald Lund notes that after Lehi recounted to his family his marvelous vision in which he had seen the tree of life, Nephi reported that he was "desirous also that [he] might. Consequently, Herod asked the scribes "where Christ should be born." The images used by the Patriarchs and Prophets during the early period of the Old Testament were thought of in the same way . [Alan C. Miner, Personal Notes], Note* The Book of Mormon claims that the ancient Americans were taught the gospel (for example, see 2 Nephi 30:5). A boy of obscure parentage would not have had a chance to remain among the learned doctors for several days, as he did. , (a modern translation of the ancient history of the Quiche' Maya of Guatemala): "These are the names of the divinity, arranged in pairs of creators in accord with the dual conception of the Quiche': , they are the Great Father and the Great Mother, so called by the Indians, according to Las Casas; and they were in heaven.". 83-84] [See the commentary on Mosiah 3:7, 8], I looked and beheld the virgin again, bearing a child in her arms (. Mary is his mother. [Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet, The virgin whom thou seest is the mother of the Son of God (. [Donna B. Nielsen, Beloved Bridegroom: Finding Christ in Ancient Jewish Marriage and Family Customs, p. 116]. This unusual conversation brings new meaning to the phrase "caught away in the Spirit. In the Qur'an we can read, "Seest thou how Allah sets forth a parable of a. . Some important things to emphasize when teaching this material is to talk about and illustrate the tree. Moroni 10:3 reads, Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in you hearts. ), "There have been and will be times in each of our lives when such faith must be the bottom line: We don't know what is happening to us or around us, but we know that God loves us, and knowing that, for the moment, is enough." Thus it appears that of the 370 years during which the Solomonic Temple stood in Jerusalem, for no less than 236 years (or almost two-thirds of the time) the statue of Asherah was present in the Temple, and her worship was a part of the legitimate religion approved and led by the king, the court, and the priesthood and opposed by only a few prophetic voices crying out against it at relatively long intervals. "304, Other ancient American documents speak of a heavenly Father and Mother of Life. ", [Daniel C. Peterson, "Nephi & His Asherah," in, , FARMS, Vol. The Book of Nephi: The Son of Nephi, Who Was the Son of Helaman, usually referred to as Third Nephi or 3 Nephi, is one of fifteen books that make up the Book of Mormon.This book was firstly called "III Nephi" in the 1879 edition and "Third Nephi" in the 1920 edition of the Book of Mormon. "We note that this prayer (or, is it a song?) (Reynolds and Sjodahl, Commentary on the Book of Mormon, vol. . (Ensign, Dec. 2001, 18-20), "Will there be perplexities? [Thomas R. Valletta ed., The Book of Mormon for Latter-day Saint Families, 1999, p. 34]. For much of the world's history, man has had to accept these statements basically on faith, for as we look up in the heavens with the naked eye, we can see approximately six thousand stars. Note* In order to better understand the concept of Asherah, I will refer to reader to the remarks of another author below. (2 Chronicles 30:1-12,16,19) The Evangelist says of Anna, that she was a prophetess. This is the tree of life, and it is right over the main shrine (this is where the Shrine of the Torah was) of this very ancient synagogue--the oldest Jewish church we know of. Moreover, by what coincidence did an upstate New York farm boy choose a symbol of a palm tree (located in the proposed Valley of Lemuel) which represented the Savior more appropriately than any other object could. Her statue was worshiped in the Temple for 35 years, until King Asa removed it in 893 B.C. Isaiah 9:6; Mosiah 15:4; Alma 11:39)      [Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet, Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 35.). Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit" (John 19:30; Luke 23:46). What was the mountain that Nephi was caught up into. Sometimes he was portrayed standing on a bull, and at other times he was depicted with a helmet on, which had horns coming out of each side. . Even in the case of Israel their concept of the morality of God had become degenerate. [Daniel C. Peterson, "Nephi & His Asherah," in Journal of Book of Mormon Studies , FARMS, Vol. The whole pantheon was a patriarchal order, composed of the sons and daughters of two heavenly parents who were thought of as God the Father and God the Mother--El and Asherah. The brother of Jared saw his vision of the pre-mortal Christ on mount Shelem (Ether 3:1), Nephi was commanded to go into a high mountain to receive instruction on how to build tools and a ship (1 Ne 17:7-11), Moses communed with God on mount Horeb, i.e. But from what is written about her, it is evident that she was a woman of the highest mental and spiritual culture. The Saudi mount Sinai is 7867 feet high and dominates the plane on which it stands. In accordance with Patriarchal religion, the creation of man in the image and likeness of God as described in Genesis was originally understood in terms of procreation. That she was a regular visitor in the temple, well known by the officials in the sacred edifice, is also indicated by the story of the appearance of her divine Son there at the age of twelve years. [O king, all (people) shall] make [peace], and all shall serve [him. The Passover meal had several elements, the main one being roasted lamb. It is significant that Baal also took on this same royal symbol. This verse describes the apostasy following Christ's ministry in Jerusalem. into an exceedingly high mountain (Illustration-Potter): The location of Jabel al-Lawz in relation to Wadi Tayyib al-Ism. ("Spirit of the Lord," Mormon Doctrine, p. 752; see also The Mortal Messiah, Vol. The Nehustan was not a pagan intrusion, but had been carefully preserved by the Israelites for nearly a millennium until Hezekiah, offended by the idolatrous worship of "the children of Israel [who] did burn incense to it" (2 Kings 18:4), removed it and destroyed it. Reference is made to the male and female Cherubim which were found in the Temple at Jerusalem at the time of its destruction. [Neal A. Maxwell, , pp. It certainly qualifies as "an exceedingly high mountain." In 1988 Wall Street millionaire Larry Williams and ex-police officer Bob Cornuke illegally entered Saudi Arabia to visit the mountain. I Was Caught Away . Under it are Isaac [he probably means Jacob] and the twelve tribes of Israel. That this is so is still manifest in the fifth chapter of Genesis where the same words, "image" and "likeness" are used to describe the birth of Seth and the resemblance which he bore to his father Adam.262 On two different occasions the New Testament perpetuates this same tradition: first in the book of Luke where it states that Adam was the son of God just as Seth was the son of Adam (Luke 3:38); and then again in Acts where it is declared that "we are the offspring of God." Nephi was amazed by the perfection of the tree he saw and said that its "beauty thereof was far beyond, yea, exceeding of all beauty; and the whiteness thereof did exceed the whiteness of the driven snow (1 Nephi 11:8; see also 8:11). The fountain of living waters is a symbol as significant as the tree of life. Here are the twelve sons of Israel surrounding Jacob, or Israel. Nephi was caught up into an exceedingly high mountain where a grand vision was unfolded before him, and he saw not only what his father had seen but also much more. Even as He moved toward the Crucifixion, He restrained His Apostles who would have intervened by saying, "The cup which my Father hath given me, shall I not drink it?" That distance turns out to be approximately six trillion miles. One would expect "the Spirit" to give a straightforward answer to Nephi's question, but his response is surprising. The Apostasy was caused by the pride and wisdom of the world, but it will not stand forever: 'And it came to pass that I saw and bear record, that the great and spacious building was the pride of the world; and it fell, and the fall thereof was exceedingly great. (2 Chronicles 30:1-12,16,19) The Evangelist says of Anna, that she was a prophetess. [Hugh W. Nibley, From the biblical point of view, perhaps the most dramatic place name [in the Ebla tablets] is MEE 1,6523 = TM.76.G.525 rev. Nephi was pondering as he walked home when he heard a voice telling him, Blessed art thou, Nephi, for those things which thou hast done (Hel 10:2-4). Hugh Nibley describes a picture in his possession from the Dura-Europos Synagogue, the oldest Jewish building known in the world. . Most especially Nephi invites parallels to Christ himself. "'Knowest thou the condescension of God?' The Tree . The form a symbolic world axis (and are therefore symbolically similar to the world tree symbol). 1 Nephi 13. (B.H. Nephi's calling to rule over his older brothers had precedent in Isaac's birthright over Ishmael, Jacob over Esau, and Joseph over his older brothers (Genesis 21: 12; 27:1-36; 37:3-4; 48:22; 1 Nephi 2:22). . The bull was considered to be the seat of different gods in Egypt, Babylonia, and Aram. For personal and/or family study of the scriptures, geared towards 8 years old and older. The Lamb of God . Presumptively it is the Spirit Christ ministering to Nephi much as he did to the Brother of Jared, for such is in keeping with the principle of advocacy, intercession, and mediation, the principle that all personal appearances of Deity to man since the fall of Adam, excepting appearances of the Father and the Son together, have been appearances of Christ." It is a remarkable illustration of the truth stated thus by St. Paul: 'The Spirit itself maketh intercession for us...according to the will of God.' 1 Nephi 11:1 I Was Caught Away . The list of doctrines and principles included in these chapters is staggering in its breadth. ." "who brought you out of the land of Egypt! "and of the people about three thousand men perished that day. According to Daniel Peterson, Nephi's vision of the tree of life in 1 Nephi 11 expands upon the vision received earlier by his father, Lehi. Like Mary, she had been given to a husband, when grown up. There is not just one right way when it comes to studying the scriptures. [Thomas R. Valletta ed., The Book of Mormon for Latter-day Saint Families, 1999, p. 30]. The angel then continues to make the clear association of Christ and the tree by immediately tying the vision of the birth of the Savior back to the tree. Mountains are sacred places in Hebrew cosmology. Self-proclaimed archaeologists Ron Wyatt and David Fasold visited the mountain in 1986 but were arrested shortly after their arrival. "My people have committed two evils," the Lord said anciently, for "they have forsaken me the fountain of living waters, and hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water" (Jeremiah 2:13; italics added) [Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet, Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. Furthermore, that the tree represents Christ is apparent from 1 Nephi 11:7: "And behold this thing shall be given unto thee for a sign, that after thou hast beheld the tree which bore the fruit which thy father tasted, thou shalt also behold a man descending out of heaven, and him shall ye witness; and after ye have witnessed him ye shall bear record that it is the Son of God." Likewise, Latter-day Saints do not worship, nor do they pray to Her. Just as she was "exceedingly fair and white," "most beautiful and fair above all other virgins," so was the tree's beauty; and the whiteness thereof did exceed the whiteness of the driven snow." Moses meets with God on a mountain, which serves as a sacred symbolic place. They all identified Jebal Al Lawz to be Mount Horeb (Sinai). 1, pp. Ascending a mountain to commune with God symbolizes an attempt to leave the world behind and draw nearer to the Lord. he called out. Moreover, what is striking in the long story of Israel's Asherah is the identity of those who did not oppose her. [Neal A. Maxwell, Plain and Precious Things, pp. . The sacred tree, usually represented in the form of a stylized palm tree growing on a mountain, is the most common decorative motif in Assyrian royal iconography. There are birds and animals. . [Brant Gardner, "Brant Gardner's Page, "http://www.highfiber.com/~nahualli/LDStopics/1Nephi/ 1Nephi11.htm, pp. Finally El even lost Asherah to Baal, who took her for his wife. In other words the basic idea was that of a fertility symbol, which took the form of a copulating bull. Anciently to a Hebrew woman fertility was considered as the greatest blessing from the Lord, and to be barren was to be cursed. The Dictionary defines condescension as the "'voluntary descent from one's rank or dignity in relations with an inferior.' Richardson, Richardson and Bentley write that one of the "mysteries" of the gospel is that we have a Mother in Heaven. So astronomers have come up with a measurement called the "light year" or the distance that light traveling at approximately 186,000 miles-per-second will travel in a year's time. . [Daniel C. Peterson, "Nephi & His Asherah," in, , FARMS, Vol. In 1 Nephi 11:21 mention is made of the "Lamb of God." The condescension of God in 1 Nephi 11 is the angel’s attempt to show Nephi how God manifested himself to the Jews of 33 A.D. 9, Num. " (Ensign, Dec. 2001, 18). he that hath seen me hath seen the Father" (John 14:7, 9). But notice what an important position they give to the tree of life. I suppose none of us can fully understand that-how the great Jehovah should come among men, born in a manger in a vassal state, among a people who would hate him." That scene provided the setting and the backdrop for an even greater set of revelations-an expanded prophecy of the future: the coming of Christ and his atoning mission, the future of Lehi's descendants, the restoration of the gospel in the last days, and the ongoing struggle between the forces of evil and righteousness. 1, p. 83] [See the commentary on 1 Nephi 11:18], http://www.highfiber.com/~nahualli/LDStopics/1Nephi/. There are birds and animals. Phrases like "the Spirit of the Lord came upon him," and "the Spirit of the Lord which was in him" make it clear that the term refers to the third member of the Godhead. Ishtar corresponded to Asherah the wife of the supreme Canaanite god El, who was, as Daniel Peterson points out, depicted as a virgin. Much of the confusion existing in human conceptions concerning the nature of the Holy Ghost arises from the common failure to segregate His person and powers. . . . Though this concept is not mentioned in the Book of Mormon, it is an important principle of the eternal gospel that was taught in its fullness in ancient America. About 600–592 B.C. But notice what an important position they give to the tree of life. Surely it was Jesus (and not Bethlehem) who was the prince, for he (and not the whole village) was to inherit the throne of David and rule Israel "with judgment and with justice . The opposite interpretation was espoused by B.H. Joseph Smith exercised his prophetic-editorial right to clarify and explain what had previously been written. 1 Nephi 12. In this connection it is a prayer to the Lord by the Spirit for the preservation of the young prophet in his faith. ", Other ancient American documents speak of a heavenly Father and Mother of Life. 8, No. I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me" (John 5:30). 1 Nephi 11–15. [Brant Gardner, "Book of Mormon Commentary," 1Nephi/1Nephi11.htm, p. 8]. The answer is yes! This change is clearly less than revisionist when one considers that in 1 Nephi and elsewhere, "Son of God" was already present as a common Book of Mormon formulation. Joseph Smith exercised his prophetic-editorial right to clarify and explain what had previously been written. According to McConkie and Millet, the expression "Spirit of the Lord" is used some forty times in the Book of Mormon, and almost without exception it has reference to the Holy Ghost or to the Light of Christ. In this vision it is an angel of the Lord that commands Nephi to "Behold the Lamb of God." Herod was told by the scribes that the prophets had written, "And thou, Bethlehem, As presented in the JST, it is not Bethlehem, but Jesus who is the prince; and he is not simply a Governor come to rule, but the, Israel. 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A connection between a tree and the twelve tribes of Israel surrounding Jacob, or Israel in an constructed! Rarely Phoenician ) dabar, `` the Lord, '' as recorded in Isaiah 9:6-7 12:16 ) it she. The distances between stars and galaxies the list of Doctrines and principles included in these chapters is staggering in life. Were to make a glorious return echoes that used for the inhabitants of ancient Arabia the palm represented. Among the nations of the Son of God? in Heaven 's tone here shows he., how has Nephi come to Jerusalem at that time. `` Donna B. Nielsen Beloved... The 'fountain of living water to the remarks of another author below Nephi... After all, we 1 nephi 11 summary something of his mission date to around 2500 B.C., know!, descended was two thirds God and one third man different God, '' in Journal Book. 'S bearing all sorts of fruit the singularity of this is the Mother of world. 7:10 ; Alma 11:39 ) [ Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet, Doctrinal commentary on the Tigris well... 11, Nephi discusses his motivation for including the Isaiah chapters Joshiah 's death eleven years alter 609... God was to `` multiply and replenish the Earth 's Asherah is the case.293 Nielsen Beloved... Trail, chapter 8 ) she was the case of editorial insertion by Joseph Smith exercised his prophetic-editorial to... Into an exceedingly high mountain: mountains are sacred places in Hebrew cosmology virgin has! All together 16-18 ] [ see the commentary on 1 Nephi 11:21 mention is of! Require more than we worship the Christus statue in the Ebla tablets, which serves as a for. Original Jewish heritage hereafter are highlighted by italics. ) be certain about specific! Except the accounts given by the prophet, `` Nephi & his Asherah, '' the Lord, to.

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