2 Ne 4:1-12
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Relationship to Chapters 1-5. The relationship of Chapter 4a to the rest of Chapters 1-5 is discussed at Second Nephi 1-5.
Story. Chapter 4a consists of ____ major sections:
Message. Themes, symbols, and doctrinal points emphasized in Chapter 4a include:
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- 2 Ne 4:6: Cursing. The curse the Lamanites are given is sometimes understood to principally refer to a darker skin color. But, as a physical curse referring to skin color Lehi's statement "that the cursing may be taken from you and be answered upon the heads of your parents" wouldn't make much sense. If instead we interpret the curse as spiritual--for example, if not having the gospel truths is itself a curse--then Lehi's statement here makes sense.
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Prompts for further study
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- 2 Ne 4:2: Are we to understand that the brass plates were not full when Lehi received them, i.e. there was room left to write more? Or did they add plates to the plates of brass? If this is the case, what does this say about the nature and boundary of sacred text in Lehi's time, place, or just in his own family? Did Lehi's writings become **part of** the plates of brass, to be understood as equally sacred and/or authoritative as the rest?
- 2 Ne 4:5: How should we interpret Lehi's statement to the children of Laman "I know that if you are brought up in the way ye should go ye will not depart from it"? Does Lehi mean that he knows that this is a characteristic specifically of these grandchildren? Or is he stating this as a general rule (like Prov 22:6)--generally true despite the exceptions?
- 2 Ne 4:10: Why does Nephi include information about Lehi's speaking to the sons of Ishmael? Why would this matter? Is it only a matter of completeness, to let the reader know that Lehi did in fact speak to everybody in his family before his death, even if what was said is not worth writing down? If this is so, why is there no mention of any words directed specifically to Nephi?
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