“Other Sheep I Have Which Are Not of This Fold Them Also I Must Bring”

Alan C. Miner

Richardson, Richardson and Bentley write that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints teaches that Ezekiel's prophecy on the stick of Joseph (Ezekiel 37:15-22), and Jesus' prophecy of the "other sheep" (John 10:16; 3 Nephi 15:21) both apply to the people of the Book of Mormon.

According to non-Mormon scholar Aileen Guilding, Ezekiel's prophecy of the stick of Joseph was the background of Jesus' prophecy concerning his "other sheep." This evidence strengthens the claim of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that the other sheep were not gentiles, but remnants of the House of Israel living in the New World. (cited in John Fowles, "The Jewish Lectionary and the Book of Mormon Prophecy," Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, Fall 1994, p. 119.)

Guilding reached her conclusions by finding that John recorded the time of year of Jesus' prophecy. According to the Gospel of John, it was during the Feast of Dedication and it was winter (John 10:22). This annual Jewish festival sometimes called Hanukkah, was commenced in the month of Kislev, which correlates with December. Another name for this feast is the Dedication of the Altar, which is closely related to Solomon's consecration of the temple and the Feast of the Tabernacles mentioned in the apocryphal book 2 Maccabees 1:9, 18.

The significance of the time of year for the feast, is that the Jews of the New Testament followed an ancient schedule of reading specific passages of the law on the specified Sabbaths throughout the year. (see Acts 15:21) According to Guilding's reconstruction of the reading schedule, the section of the Pentateuch that was read during the Feast of Dedication was Genesis 46:28 through 47:31, which prophesied of the reuniting of Judah and Joseph. Along with this was read Ezekiel 37:15-28, which symbolically deals with the reunification of the divided house of Israel by bringing forth the records of each kingdom and uniting them together. [Allen H. Richardson, David E. Richardson and Anthony E. Bentley, 1000 Evidences for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: Part Two-A Voice from the Dust: 500 Evidences in Support of the Book of Mormon, pp. 88-898] [See the commentary on 2 Nephi 3:12]

Step by Step Through the Book of Mormon: A Cultural Commentary