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This page allows you to see all the commentary pages together for this Book of Mormon Gospel Doctrine lesson. Click on the heading to go to a specific page. Click the edit links below to edit text on any pages.

Readings: 1 Nephi 8–11; 1 Nephi 12:16–18; 1 Nephi 15


1 Ne 8:1-5

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:2-9
Previous page: Chapter 8-9                      Next page: Verses 8:10-18

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of verses 8:2-9 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

  • "Dreamed a dream" and "seen a vision" are equated in verse 2. There are many contexts in which these phrases might have different connotations.
  • It is interesting to note that even though Ishmael's family had just arrived in the valley, there is no mention at all of them in the dream or in Lehi's commentary on the dream.

[edit] Verse 7

  • In verse 7, Lehi finds himself in a dark and dreary waste where he wanders around for hours. He wanders around for hours before he prays to the Lord for mercy, after which he see the tree of life and partakes of the fruit. It is interesting that the iron rod is never mentioned in Lehi's partaking of the fruit.
  • It is interesting to note that as soon as Lehi begins following the Heavenly messenger, he finds himself in a dark and dreary waste. Often times, it seems that when we make an effort in our lives to do what's right, we end up passing through trials and temptations, and it may seem that the Lord is not with us or doesn't care about us. But, if we are patient and faithful, calling upon His name, He will hear us AND deliver us.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 1

  • Was Nephi's description in this verse affected by Old Testament verses such as 1 Chr 28:14?

[edit] Verse 2

  • Was Nephi quoting Lehi when he wrote the phrase "in other words"?
  • Is there a difference between a dream and a vision? What might qualify a dream as a vision?

[edit] Verse 3

  • How might Laman and Lemuel have felt to be unflatteringly compared to their younger brother?

[edit] Verse 4

  • May Lehi might have inadvertantly pushed his older children--who obviously did have some serious issues--further away by comparing them to their younger siblings?
  • Why does Lehi use the word "methought" here? It seems to express uncertainty. Is his uncertainty about whether there was a dark and dreary wilderness in his dream? Or does it point back to his fear for Laman and Lemuel and he is saying he thinks (but isn't sure) that his dream should be interpreted as causing him to concern for their salvation.

[edit] Verse 5

  • As members of the church, who leads us to the tree?
  • Who was this man that Lehi followed?
  • Is there special significance to the man's robe being white?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Was the phrase "bade me" influenced by OT verses such as 2 Sam 14:19?

[edit] Verse 7

  • What level of consciousness or awareness was Lehi describing with the phrase "beheld myself"?
  • What happened to the angel that Lehi was following? Did he abandon Lehi in the darkness?

[edit] Verse 8

  • If the word "hours" does not appear in the Old Testament, then was it New Testament usage that influenced the translation of this verse?
  • How does one distinguish "many hours" of travel in a dream? What was this experience of traveling in darkness like?
  • Why would Lehi pray for mercy while traveling in the darkness? Was there something more to the dream than just being in the dark?
  • What does the "multitude of...tender mercies" mean? Does this imply that there are more than one type of mercy, and what might make them tender?

[edit] Verse 9

  • Why doesn't the word "spacious" appear in scriptures outside the Book of Mormon?
  • Is the word "spacious" in this verse related to the word "space" in the previous verse?
  • Why doesn't the field appear until after Lehi prays?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 8-9                      Next page: Verses 8:10-18

1 Ne 8:6-10

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:2-9
Previous page: Chapter 8-9                      Next page: Verses 8:10-18

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of verses 8:2-9 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

  • "Dreamed a dream" and "seen a vision" are equated in verse 2. There are many contexts in which these phrases might have different connotations.
  • It is interesting to note that even though Ishmael's family had just arrived in the valley, there is no mention at all of them in the dream or in Lehi's commentary on the dream.

[edit] Verse 7

  • In verse 7, Lehi finds himself in a dark and dreary waste where he wanders around for hours. He wanders around for hours before he prays to the Lord for mercy, after which he see the tree of life and partakes of the fruit. It is interesting that the iron rod is never mentioned in Lehi's partaking of the fruit.
  • It is interesting to note that as soon as Lehi begins following the Heavenly messenger, he finds himself in a dark and dreary waste. Often times, it seems that when we make an effort in our lives to do what's right, we end up passing through trials and temptations, and it may seem that the Lord is not with us or doesn't care about us. But, if we are patient and faithful, calling upon His name, He will hear us AND deliver us.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 1

  • Was Nephi's description in this verse affected by Old Testament verses such as 1 Chr 28:14?

[edit] Verse 2

  • Was Nephi quoting Lehi when he wrote the phrase "in other words"?
  • Is there a difference between a dream and a vision? What might qualify a dream as a vision?

[edit] Verse 3

  • How might Laman and Lemuel have felt to be unflatteringly compared to their younger brother?

[edit] Verse 4

  • May Lehi might have inadvertantly pushed his older children--who obviously did have some serious issues--further away by comparing them to their younger siblings?
  • Why does Lehi use the word "methought" here? It seems to express uncertainty. Is his uncertainty about whether there was a dark and dreary wilderness in his dream? Or does it point back to his fear for Laman and Lemuel and he is saying he thinks (but isn't sure) that his dream should be interpreted as causing him to concern for their salvation.

[edit] Verse 5

  • As members of the church, who leads us to the tree?
  • Who was this man that Lehi followed?
  • Is there special significance to the man's robe being white?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Was the phrase "bade me" influenced by OT verses such as 2 Sam 14:19?

[edit] Verse 7

  • What level of consciousness or awareness was Lehi describing with the phrase "beheld myself"?
  • What happened to the angel that Lehi was following? Did he abandon Lehi in the darkness?

[edit] Verse 8

  • If the word "hours" does not appear in the Old Testament, then was it New Testament usage that influenced the translation of this verse?
  • How does one distinguish "many hours" of travel in a dream? What was this experience of traveling in darkness like?
  • Why would Lehi pray for mercy while traveling in the darkness? Was there something more to the dream than just being in the dark?
  • What does the "multitude of...tender mercies" mean? Does this imply that there are more than one type of mercy, and what might make them tender?

[edit] Verse 9

  • Why doesn't the word "spacious" appear in scriptures outside the Book of Mormon?
  • Is the word "spacious" in this verse related to the word "space" in the previous verse?
  • Why doesn't the field appear until after Lehi prays?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 8-9                      Next page: Verses 8:10-18

1 Ne 8:11-15

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:10-18
Previous page: Verses 8:2-9                      Next page: Verses 8:19-28

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of verses 8:10-18 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 10

  • The tree of life symbolizes the Love of God. There is nothing in this life that can bring us as much happiness as partaking of the fruits of his love. These include his spirit, the atonement, and much more.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Verse 10

  • Why does this verse echo the phrase "a tree to be desired to make one wise" found in Gen 3:6?

[edit] Verse 11

  • Why does the word "sweet" require the modifiers "most" and "above" while the word "white" only requires "exceed"?

[edit] Verse 12

  • Why does the Bible say nothing about the soul being filled with joy?

[edit] Verse 13

  • Was Lehi's wording in this verse influenced by Isa 60:4?

[edit] Verse 14

  • Why was this sacred tree located at the bottom of the river, rather than in an elevated spot?

[edit] Verse 15

  • Was Lehi using a messianic phrase when he invited his family to "come unto me"?

[edit] Verse 16

  • Why is it necessary for both the words "and" and "also" to appear in this verse?

[edit] Verse 17

  • Why did Lehi choose to not repeat his "come unto me" message when calling for Laman and Lemuel?

[edit] Verse 18

  • Does this foreshadowing vision of Laman and Lemuel not going to the tree of life, or not coming unto Christ, mean that they will never come unto the Savior? What about their agency? Does this de-motivate them to try?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 8:2-9                      Next page: Verses 8:19-28

1 Ne 8:16-20

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:10-18
Previous page: Verses 8:2-9                      Next page: Verses 8:19-28

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of verses 8:10-18 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 10

  • The tree of life symbolizes the Love of God. There is nothing in this life that can bring us as much happiness as partaking of the fruits of his love. These include his spirit, the atonement, and much more.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Verse 10

  • Why does this verse echo the phrase "a tree to be desired to make one wise" found in Gen 3:6?

[edit] Verse 11

  • Why does the word "sweet" require the modifiers "most" and "above" while the word "white" only requires "exceed"?

[edit] Verse 12

  • Why does the Bible say nothing about the soul being filled with joy?

[edit] Verse 13

  • Was Lehi's wording in this verse influenced by Isa 60:4?

[edit] Verse 14

  • Why was this sacred tree located at the bottom of the river, rather than in an elevated spot?

[edit] Verse 15

  • Was Lehi using a messianic phrase when he invited his family to "come unto me"?

[edit] Verse 16

  • Why is it necessary for both the words "and" and "also" to appear in this verse?

[edit] Verse 17

  • Why did Lehi choose to not repeat his "come unto me" message when calling for Laman and Lemuel?

[edit] Verse 18

  • Does this foreshadowing vision of Laman and Lemuel not going to the tree of life, or not coming unto Christ, mean that they will never come unto the Savior? What about their agency? Does this de-motivate them to try?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 8:2-9                      Next page: Verses 8:19-28

1 Ne 8:21-25

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:19-28
Previous page: Verses 8:10-18                      Next page: Verses 8:29-35

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of verses 8:19-28 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 19-20

Could the path be the trail worn by those holding on to the rod? If this is the case, it makes an interesting analogy to two groups of saints: Those who hold to the word of God (the scriptures and the words of the prophets) and those who simply follow the actions of those hold to the rod (they go to church, activities, etc.). Later, when the mist of darkness arises, it is those who are simply on the path, following the ways of the righteous, that fall away. Those who hold to the rod, or word of God, make it through the temptations. (A further note: There are two groups that hold to the rod and eat the fruit: those who eat and look around to see who's watching, and those who "fall down" and partake - very humble. It seems there are two ways to follow the word of God - we can do it in true humility, focusing on the Love of God (tree), or, we can follow the word of God because we want to look good to others.)

[edit] Verse 24

Lehi sees that they are "clinging" to the rod of iron. In such a dark setting you might expect people to be holding hands. But nothing is said of people clinging together. No person is leading another by the hand. Maybe the significance of this is that the rod of iron, or as we learn later, the word of God, must be grasped directly, individually, of our own choice. We must know the truth for ourselves. Others can "beckon" us, as Lehi did his family, but we each need to grasp the word of God individually if we are to press forward.

Clinging to the rod implies a force pulling in the opposite direction--that is why they clung to it. Those who "continually held fast" seem to not have the opposite pull. The "clingers" did not "fall at the tree" but simply partook and then were ashamed. I think "clingers" could compare to those who view the Gospel as something they should do, but the pull of the world is very real in their lives, so they cling because they know they should, not that they really want the Gospel. That is why they did not fall down when they partook of the fruit; they didn't recognize the great gift of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. They were like the nine lepers who had been cleansed and never thanked Christ. However, because they clung to the rod and partook of the fruit, not because they really wanted to but because they were "supposed to", they eventually fell away or gave into that force that had been pulling at them the whole time.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 19

  • Why was it necessary for the iron rod to follow the route of the river from its head to the tree?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was the path located on the bank, between the iron rod and the river, or was the iron rod located in between the river bank and the path?

[edit] Verse 21

  • Given how the word "concourses" is used in the Book of Mormon, should we assume that Lehi was trying to say there was something angelic about the people in this first group?

[edit] Verse 22

  • How is it possible that all of these people started out on the same side of the river as the path?

[edit] Verse 23

  • Why did everyone on the path at that moment "lose their way"?

[edit] Verse 24

  • What were the odds that, in total darkness, these people could find the direction they needed to take in order to find the iron rod?

[edit] Verse 25

  • Was this verse influenced by Neh 6:16?

[edit] Verse 26

  • How did it happen that both the ashamed (vs. 25) and the confident (vs. 26) cast their eyes about?

[edit] Verse 27

  • Why does the word "attitude" not appear in the Bible?

[edit] Verse 28

  • Why wasn't it possible for these individuals to avoid feeling ashamed?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 23-24

  • Jeffrey R. Holland, "Prophets in the Land Again," Ensign, Nov 2006, pp. 104–7. Elder Holland said: "[W]hen those mists of darkness enveloped the travelers in Lehi's vision of the tree of life, it enveloped all of the participants—the righteous as well as the unrighteous, the young along with the elderly, the new convert and seasoned member alike. In that allegory all face opposition and travail, and only the rod of iron—the declared word of God—can bring them safely through. We all need that rod. We all need that word. No one is safe without it..."
  • "Clinging" vs. "holding fast." See this post by NathanG at the Feast blog regarding the "clinging to" wording here in contrast to the "holding fast" wording in verse 30.


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 8:10-18                      Next page: Verses 8:29-35

1 Ne 8:26-30

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:19-28
Previous page: Verses 8:10-18                      Next page: Verses 8:29-35

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of verses 8:19-28 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 19-20

Could the path be the trail worn by those holding on to the rod? If this is the case, it makes an interesting analogy to two groups of saints: Those who hold to the word of God (the scriptures and the words of the prophets) and those who simply follow the actions of those hold to the rod (they go to church, activities, etc.). Later, when the mist of darkness arises, it is those who are simply on the path, following the ways of the righteous, that fall away. Those who hold to the rod, or word of God, make it through the temptations. (A further note: There are two groups that hold to the rod and eat the fruit: those who eat and look around to see who's watching, and those who "fall down" and partake - very humble. It seems there are two ways to follow the word of God - we can do it in true humility, focusing on the Love of God (tree), or, we can follow the word of God because we want to look good to others.)

[edit] Verse 24

Lehi sees that they are "clinging" to the rod of iron. In such a dark setting you might expect people to be holding hands. But nothing is said of people clinging together. No person is leading another by the hand. Maybe the significance of this is that the rod of iron, or as we learn later, the word of God, must be grasped directly, individually, of our own choice. We must know the truth for ourselves. Others can "beckon" us, as Lehi did his family, but we each need to grasp the word of God individually if we are to press forward.

Clinging to the rod implies a force pulling in the opposite direction--that is why they clung to it. Those who "continually held fast" seem to not have the opposite pull. The "clingers" did not "fall at the tree" but simply partook and then were ashamed. I think "clingers" could compare to those who view the Gospel as something they should do, but the pull of the world is very real in their lives, so they cling because they know they should, not that they really want the Gospel. That is why they did not fall down when they partook of the fruit; they didn't recognize the great gift of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. They were like the nine lepers who had been cleansed and never thanked Christ. However, because they clung to the rod and partook of the fruit, not because they really wanted to but because they were "supposed to", they eventually fell away or gave into that force that had been pulling at them the whole time.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 19

  • Why was it necessary for the iron rod to follow the route of the river from its head to the tree?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was the path located on the bank, between the iron rod and the river, or was the iron rod located in between the river bank and the path?

[edit] Verse 21

  • Given how the word "concourses" is used in the Book of Mormon, should we assume that Lehi was trying to say there was something angelic about the people in this first group?

[edit] Verse 22

  • How is it possible that all of these people started out on the same side of the river as the path?

[edit] Verse 23

  • Why did everyone on the path at that moment "lose their way"?

[edit] Verse 24

  • What were the odds that, in total darkness, these people could find the direction they needed to take in order to find the iron rod?

[edit] Verse 25

  • Was this verse influenced by Neh 6:16?

[edit] Verse 26

  • How did it happen that both the ashamed (vs. 25) and the confident (vs. 26) cast their eyes about?

[edit] Verse 27

  • Why does the word "attitude" not appear in the Bible?

[edit] Verse 28

  • Why wasn't it possible for these individuals to avoid feeling ashamed?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 23-24

  • Jeffrey R. Holland, "Prophets in the Land Again," Ensign, Nov 2006, pp. 104–7. Elder Holland said: "[W]hen those mists of darkness enveloped the travelers in Lehi's vision of the tree of life, it enveloped all of the participants—the righteous as well as the unrighteous, the young along with the elderly, the new convert and seasoned member alike. In that allegory all face opposition and travail, and only the rod of iron—the declared word of God—can bring them safely through. We all need that rod. We all need that word. No one is safe without it..."
  • "Clinging" vs. "holding fast." See this post by NathanG at the Feast blog regarding the "clinging to" wording here in contrast to the "holding fast" wording in verse 30.


[edit] Notes

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Previous page: Verses 8:10-18                      Next page: Verses 8:29-35

1 Ne 8:31-35

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:29-35
Previous page: Verses 8:19-28                      Next page: Verses 8:36-9:1

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of verses 8:29-35 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

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[edit] Verse 30

We often talk about clinging to the rod of iron and holding fast to the rod of iron similarly. Both are descriptors of how we should approach the word of God, or the scriptures. If we follow those who cling to the iron rod to their conclusion, they become ashamed after they have partaken of the fruit of the tree life (verse 28). The group that holds fast to the iron rod (verse 30) comes to the tree, falls down and eats the fruit. Is there a difference, then between clinging and holding fast to the iron rod? Can this difference help us understand how to better approach the scriptures?

Cling is often used in a negative connotation. It also carries a sense of desperation. I envision someone putting their whole attention on the object to which they cling. In the vision, these people may have been clinging to the rod for their life. Or, they were looking to the scriptures to save their life. However, the scriptures are not meant to be the source of life, but something to lead us to the source of life, the tree of life, the love of God, or simply Jesus Christ. Perhaps the mist of darkness and their focus on the iron rod resulted in them not even understanding what they were going to. When they finally arrive at the tree, they partake, but it is not what they expected because this was the life they thought they had received, and they fell away. Perhaps this approach is making the scriptures something they were not intended to be, and maybe this is what wresting the scriptures means.

Contrast holding fast. Fast implies firm and secure. It is similar to fasten. Fastening something together (such as a seatbelt) brings to things together and joins them as one. It gives a sense of safety, without occupying one's entire attention. These people on the path could pay more attention to what was happening and where they were going. Perhaps through breaks in the mist, they could see the tree. They came to understand that the tree would offer them life. They then arrive at the tree and fall down in a worshipful manner and partook of the fruit.

When Nephi and Lehi understood that the rod of iron was a representation of the word of God, they probably thought first and foremost of the Law of Moses. If we apply the two approaches to the rod to the Law of Moses, we can clearly see the history of the Jews in a simple form. There were many who clung to the Law as though it was the source of life. They rejected Christ. There were others who understood that the Law led to Christ. These people continued to follow the law, but it was secondary to their focus on Christ.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 29

  • Was Nephi speaking and writing these words simultaneously?

[edit] Verse 30

  • What does it mean that the people "fell down"?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Does use of the word multitude connote a line of descendants (see Gen 48:4)?

[edit] Verse 32

  • How does Nephi know what these people were doing if his father was unable to relate their fate in his telling of the story?

[edit] Verse 33

  • Why is Nephi switching, apparently without an explanation, from third person in the previous verse to first person in this verse?

[edit] Verse 34

  • Were these people powerless to escape once they listened to the song of the sirens?

[edit] Verse 35

  • Which group were these two in and did they even get close to the tree?


[edit] Resources

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[edit] Notes

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Previous page: Verses 8:19-28                      Next page: Verses 8:36-9:1

1 Ne 8:36-38

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:36-9:1
Previous page: Verses 8:29-35                      Next page: Verses 9:2-6

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of verses 8:36-9:1 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


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[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] Verse 8:36

  • Was Lehi's vision so prophetic that Laman and Lemuel were destined, from that time on, to work against the will of the Lord?

[edit] Verse 8:37

  • If "exhort" means to "force or impel in an indicated direction" and "tender" means "given to sympathy or gentleness or sentimentality," then how do these words work together?

[edit] Verse 8:38

  • Did Lehi think this was the last chance he would have to convince his sons to change their ways?

[edit] Verse 9:1

  • Was Nephi trying to say that what Lehi felt was less important than what he say, heard, and spoke?


[edit] Resources

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[edit] Notes

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Previous page: Verses 8:29-35                      Next page: Verses 9:2-6

1 Ne 9:1-6

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapter 8-9 > Verses 8:2-9
Previous page: Verses 8:36-9:1                      Next page: Chapters 10-15

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of verses 9:2-6 to the rest of Chapter 8-9 is discussed at Chapter 8-9.


[edit] Discussion

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  • The Lord know our past. His knowledge of history allows him to make plans for the future. This power of perception allows him to orchestrate our lives and his purposes. The prophecies he shares with us provide an inkling of what he foresees and is putting in place.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 2

  • Why didn't Nephi make the large/small distinction at this point for his plates?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Did Nephi make these plates in their entirety or did he simply start the plates and leave it to others to add additional leaves?

[edit] Verse 4

  • Why did Nephi need to repeat this eleven-word phrase twice in the same verse: "of the reign of the kings, and the wars and contentions"?
  • How did Nephi know at this point that his descendants would have a history of kings?

[edit] Verse 5

  • Why did Nephi think that creating an account of the spiritual ministry of his people did not count as a wise purpose?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Is power the only thing the Lord uses to fulfill his words?


[edit] Resources

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[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 8:36-9:1                      Next page: Chapters 10-15

1 Ne 10:1-5

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 10 > Verses 1-10
Previous page: Chapter 10                      Next page: Verse 10:11-16

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of Verses 1-10 to the rest of Chapter 10 is discussed at First Nephi 10.


[edit] Discussion

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[edit] Verse 1

  • Proceedings. In 1 Ne 19:2 the word proceedings is used in describing the "proceedings in the wilderness" of Lehi, Nephi and his brethren. Here, since Nephi does not seem to describe his "reign and ministry" until 2 Ne 6, it may be that the proceedings he is referring to are those times in the wilderness including the vision commencing in 1 Ne 11:1 which occurred in the wilderness.
  • Must speak somewhat. One reason that Nephi must speak "of the things of my father, and also of my brethren" may be to set the stage for the vision in the wilderness that he has regarding the Jews and Gentiles (chapters 11-15).

Of interest also, then, is the fact that Nephi's first name for the Son here is "a prophet." What this means remains to be explored. This is a prophecy of the ministry of John the Baptist. This is a prophecy of the baptism of Christ.

[edit] Verse 1

The summarized words of Lehi as recorded in this chapter are of the utmost importance for the interpretation of the rest of the Book of Mormon. This chapter marks the first mention of the Gentiles in the Book of Mormon, and it also marks the first discussion of the interrelation of the Jews and Israel. In fact, it is the first--as well as the simplest, the most straightforward--explanation of the eventual covenantal interplay of the Jews, the Gentiles, and Israel. Since this topic becomes, one could argue, the most important theme of the whole of the Book of Mormon (see, at least, the title page of the Book of Mormon on this), this first setting of the stage for all subsequent discussion is of undeniable importance. It is, in fact, this first verse of this chapter that first highlights the importance of this theme for Nephi. The verse opens quite clearly as a marker of a major transition in the record. Noel Reynolds finds evidence of a very broad structuring of the whole of First Nephi that supports this moment of transition (he argues that 1 Nephi 1-9 form a broad twelve-step pattern that is perfectly parallel to 1 Nephi 10-22, thus making First Nephi one gigantic parallelism that splits right at this verse; see Table 1 in his work cited below). As this verse makes clear, the transition in question at this point in the record is one Nephi had promised as early as 1 Ne 1:17: "Behold, I make an abridgment of the record of my father, upon plates which I have made with mine own hands; wherefore, after I have abridged the record of my father then will I make an account of mine own life." In short, Nephi is in the process here, at last, of transitioning to his own "reign and ministry."

But the wording of this first verse complicates the transition somewhat. Nephi's "reign and ministry" does not enter into the record in chapter 11, right after these brief comments on Lehi's teachings. Rather, any real discussion of his "reign and ministry" is not to be found until at least 2 Ne 5:5, or even (as seems to be a stricter reading) 2 Ne 6:1. In other words, if this first verse marks the beginning of a transition, it must be admitted that the transition stretches for eighteen chapters! This would, interestingly, accord well with what Nephi says in 1 Ne 19:5: he explains there that only after his account of the physical production of the small plates (an account to be found in the very last verses of 2 Ne 5 would he "proceed according to that which I have spoken," namely, to record "the ministry and the prophecies, the more plain and precious parts of them" (this clarification comes from 1 Ne 19:3). In short, it seems the best reading of this first verse is to take it as the marker of an eighteen-chapter transition from Nephi's abridgment of Lehi's record to the beginning of his fulfilling the commandment to record the ministry and prophecies (which begin, ostensibly, in 2 Ne 6.

What all of these broad details suggest for this first verse here, however, still remains to be worked out. Ultimately, all of this suggests that what this first verse is saying is this: what begins to become a major question right here in chapter 10 is a first working out of what will be the underlying theme of 2 Nephi 6-33. What, of course, is in question in chapter 10 is the interplay of the Jews, the Gentiles, and Israel, and this same question underlies the visions that follow in chapters 11-15, as well as in the Isaiah quotations of 1 Nephi 20-22, and as well as in Lehi's final discourses in 2 Nephi 1-4. All in all, this verse warns the reader that the real topic Nephi is going to take up most emphatically is about to be discussed in a preliminary way. That he "must speak somewhat" of Lehi and of his brethren in connection with it is interesting: the signficance of these eventual historical events, these covenantal workings out--at least for Nephi--is to be found in what it has to do with Lehi and his sons. In other words, the Abrahamic covenant is important for Nephi precisely because of what it will do for the Lehites: the Abrahamic covenant is "relativized" ("likened"?) here, just as it is on the title page of the Book of Mormon.

[edit] Verse 2

In order to transition back to his brothers and father, Nephi resets the context and draws his readers right back to the very event he had just left: Lehi's report of the dream. That Nephi makes such a to-do right in the middle of that most important event is rather curious, and the very disruption deserves some attention, since it suggests that Nephi moves from simple abridgment to a sort of historical transition right in the middle of that event. But this is too vague. As this verse makes clear, Lehi comes to the conclusion "of speaking the words of his dream, and also of exhorting them to all diligence," and he goes on to speak of another subject, quite specifically, "concerning the Jews." In other words, though Nephi returns to the very same event--though the disruption certainly disrupts a single event--he splits the event into two great parts, two halves, and he seems to locate the shift from abridgment to transition right in the middle of the event: Lehi's subject in chapter 8 should be understood to be a part of Lehi's record, but the subject in chapter 10 must be understood to be otherwise, in fact, a part of Nephi's transition from Lehi's record to his own subject matter. In short, the transition opens with this business of "the Jews," precisely where the vision of the tree of life leaves off.

Something of major importance for a structural reading of Nephi's two books emerges here. Chapter 8, taken up as it is with Lehi's own family, with his descendants, and hence, with his (the "Lehitic") covenant, confirms quite explicitly the concern of Lehi's record and hence of Nephi's abridgment of the same: the covenant that grounds the Lehites (Nephites and Lamanites considered together). That chapter 10 broadens these sorts of questions is of vital importance: here, it is a question of the Jews, and within a few verses, it becomes also a question of the Gentiles and of Israel. The transition Nephi is making, beginning with this chapter, is a transition from questions of the Lehites to questions of all Israel and their interrelations with the Gentiles. Put more strictly: the transition Nephi is working out here is a transition from the "Lehitic" covenant to the Abrahamic covenant. This transition, marking a curious relation between two major covenants (two major covenant peoples), begins to lay the foundation for a most fascinating double record: Nephi's two books are a masterpiece of intertwined themes, the two most important of which themes are the Lehitic and Abrahamic covenants.

Perhaps worth mentioning before proceeding on, then, to the first real discussion of the Abrahamic covenant, is the fact that Nephi (cited Lehi) centers this question first and foremost in "the Jews." Whatever part Israel and the Gentiles will play, the very possibility of the Abrahamic covenant begins with the Jews and the events described concerning them in the next few verses.

[edit] Verse 3

This verse does not report anything earth-shattering about the Jews, only some historical facts that just about any serious reader of the Book of Mormon already knows. Of course, it is significant that Lehi is stating all of this before it happens (a few years before the one event, a few decades before the other). Read closely, the verse is focused on the return, but this could not have been too overwhelming an insight for Lehi: if "Second Isaiah" had indeed been written at the time, as the Book of Mormon seems quite clearly to conclude, then the idea would have been familiar to any reader of the scriptures (Isaiah does not exactly bury this prophecy in a mystery). In short, Lehi just begins to lay out the next few decades of Jewish history, as Isaiah writes it out in his writings. But there are a few curiosities about the phrasing of this verse that should draw the attention and that call for comment: there is more at work here than a simple prediction of events in Jewish history.

Last things first, the next verse makes quite clear that Lehi is not looking to the return from exile as the celebrated event of his prophetic word, but rather the coming of the Messiah. In fact, the wording, as it spreads across these two verses together, suggests that Lehi is unaware for the most part of when the return will be accomplished. The "Yea, even" that opens verse 4 seems quite clearly to suggest that Lehi understood the return from exile to have something to do with the arrival of the Messiah (perhaps not quite unlike the understanding so often--whether or not justifiably--attributed to the Jews: that of a Messiah who would come specifically to lead to a restoration of the land). In other words, Lehi's prophecy is rather uncertain temporally: it may be that he believes the Jews will return to the land of Israel only after six hundred years. At any rate, it is clear that the return itself is focused on the coming of the Messiah, rather than on the building of the second temple, the purification of Judea, etc.

All of this points to some consideration of the final phrase of verse 3: the return from captivity is a question of "possess[ing] again the land of their inheritance." From the very beginning, the Abrahamic covenant is brought to bear on this question. The return--clearly associated with the Messiah--is a question of fulfilling the ancient covenant. Lehi's picture, with this detail, grows rather complicated, and some confusions must be clarified.

[edit] Verse 4

As pointed out above, the "Yea, even" of this verse seems to suggest that Lehi understands the events of verses 3 and 4 to be a single event (though the reader of the Book of Mormon inevitably understands them to be two separate events, the return from exile in the sixth century B.C. and the birth of Christ some five centuries or so later). The point is vastly important, as becomes clear when one takes the Christology of the Book of Mormon into account as well. There is, to this point in the Book of Mormon, only a single reference to the Messiah (in 1 Ne 1:19). That is, Nephi never mentions the Son, the Redeemer, the Savior, the Messiah, the Christ, etc., etc., etc., except for that single verse in his first chapter (where the reference suggests nothing out of the ordinary for seventh or sixth century B.C. Israelite thought). Here, however, when the event of the Messiah's coming is unfolded in Lehi's discourse, Nephi suddenly employs almost every Book of Mormon name for the Son: "Messiah" and "Savior" in this verse, "Redeemer" in the next," "Lamb of God" in verse 10, and "the Son of God" in verse 17. Curiously, the Christology of the Book of Mormon emerges quite suddenly in this single prophetic discourse. But perhaps this is no surprise: the entire theology of the Abrahamic covenant in the Book of Mormon emerges quite suddenly in the course of the same discourse. In the end, the two are so profoundly intertwined in this discourse that one must recognize in Nephite theology the central interrelation between the Abrahamic covenant and the Christ.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 1

  • If Nephi said his smaller plates record "the ministry of my people" (1 Ne 9:3) and his larger plates record "the reign of the kings" (1 Ne 9:4), then why is he saying in this verse that the particular plates he is writing in at that moment (i.e., his smaller plates) contain an account of both "my reign and ministry"?

[edit] Verse 2

  • Did Lehi switch to talking about the Jews after discussing his dream because the history of the Jews he was about to relate represented a partial interpretation of the dream?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Why is the "due time" of the Lord not mentioned in the Old Testament?

[edit] Verse 4

  • Is Christ first called a prophet in this abbreviated history of the Jews because for the first three decades of his life that was all the Jews knew him as?

[edit] Verse 5

  • Is Lehi saying the previous prophets agreed with him or that he agreed with his predecessors?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Why does Lehi use the word "lost" in this verse if it means something cannot be found, recovered, or regained?
  • Who lost us and how will we be found?

[edit] Verse 7

  • How long had the Jews lived without a prophet before the arrival of this one?

[edit] Verse 8

  • Why will John the Baptist come before Christ?

[edit] Verse 9

  • Why must Christ be baptized?

[edit] Verse 10

  • Where did he take our sins?


[edit] Resources

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  • See Noel Reynolds' article "Nephi's Outline" on pages 53-74 in Book of Mormon Authorship, published by FARMS and edited by Noel Reynolds ([ISBN 0934893187]). The table mentioned in the exegesis above is found on page 58.


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 10                      Next page: Verse 10:11-16

1 Ne 10:6-10

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 10 > Verses 1-10
Previous page: Chapter 10                      Next page: Verse 10:11-16

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[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 1-10 to the rest of Chapter 10 is discussed at First Nephi 10.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 1

  • Proceedings. In 1 Ne 19:2 the word proceedings is used in describing the "proceedings in the wilderness" of Lehi, Nephi and his brethren. Here, since Nephi does not seem to describe his "reign and ministry" until 2 Ne 6, it may be that the proceedings he is referring to are those times in the wilderness including the vision commencing in 1 Ne 11:1 which occurred in the wilderness.
  • Must speak somewhat. One reason that Nephi must speak "of the things of my father, and also of my brethren" may be to set the stage for the vision in the wilderness that he has regarding the Jews and Gentiles (chapters 11-15).

Of interest also, then, is the fact that Nephi's first name for the Son here is "a prophet." What this means remains to be explored. This is a prophecy of the ministry of John the Baptist. This is a prophecy of the baptism of Christ.

[edit] Verse 1

The summarized words of Lehi as recorded in this chapter are of the utmost importance for the interpretation of the rest of the Book of Mormon. This chapter marks the first mention of the Gentiles in the Book of Mormon, and it also marks the first discussion of the interrelation of the Jews and Israel. In fact, it is the first--as well as the simplest, the most straightforward--explanation of the eventual covenantal interplay of the Jews, the Gentiles, and Israel. Since this topic becomes, one could argue, the most important theme of the whole of the Book of Mormon (see, at least, the title page of the Book of Mormon on this), this first setting of the stage for all subsequent discussion is of undeniable importance. It is, in fact, this first verse of this chapter that first highlights the importance of this theme for Nephi. The verse opens quite clearly as a marker of a major transition in the record. Noel Reynolds finds evidence of a very broad structuring of the whole of First Nephi that supports this moment of transition (he argues that 1 Nephi 1-9 form a broad twelve-step pattern that is perfectly parallel to 1 Nephi 10-22, thus making First Nephi one gigantic parallelism that splits right at this verse; see Table 1 in his work cited below). As this verse makes clear, the transition in question at this point in the record is one Nephi had promised as early as 1 Ne 1:17: "Behold, I make an abridgment of the record of my father, upon plates which I have made with mine own hands; wherefore, after I have abridged the record of my father then will I make an account of mine own life." In short, Nephi is in the process here, at last, of transitioning to his own "reign and ministry."

But the wording of this first verse complicates the transition somewhat. Nephi's "reign and ministry" does not enter into the record in chapter 11, right after these brief comments on Lehi's teachings. Rather, any real discussion of his "reign and ministry" is not to be found until at least 2 Ne 5:5, or even (as seems to be a stricter reading) 2 Ne 6:1. In other words, if this first verse marks the beginning of a transition, it must be admitted that the transition stretches for eighteen chapters! This would, interestingly, accord well with what Nephi says in 1 Ne 19:5: he explains there that only after his account of the physical production of the small plates (an account to be found in the very last verses of 2 Ne 5 would he "proceed according to that which I have spoken," namely, to record "the ministry and the prophecies, the more plain and precious parts of them" (this clarification comes from 1 Ne 19:3). In short, it seems the best reading of this first verse is to take it as the marker of an eighteen-chapter transition from Nephi's abridgment of Lehi's record to the beginning of his fulfilling the commandment to record the ministry and prophecies (which begin, ostensibly, in 2 Ne 6.

What all of these broad details suggest for this first verse here, however, still remains to be worked out. Ultimately, all of this suggests that what this first verse is saying is this: what begins to become a major question right here in chapter 10 is a first working out of what will be the underlying theme of 2 Nephi 6-33. What, of course, is in question in chapter 10 is the interplay of the Jews, the Gentiles, and Israel, and this same question underlies the visions that follow in chapters 11-15, as well as in the Isaiah quotations of 1 Nephi 20-22, and as well as in Lehi's final discourses in 2 Nephi 1-4. All in all, this verse warns the reader that the real topic Nephi is going to take up most emphatically is about to be discussed in a preliminary way. That he "must speak somewhat" of Lehi and of his brethren in connection with it is interesting: the signficance of these eventual historical events, these covenantal workings out--at least for Nephi--is to be found in what it has to do with Lehi and his sons. In other words, the Abrahamic covenant is important for Nephi precisely because of what it will do for the Lehites: the Abrahamic covenant is "relativized" ("likened"?) here, just as it is on the title page of the Book of Mormon.

[edit] Verse 2

In order to transition back to his brothers and father, Nephi resets the context and draws his readers right back to the very event he had just left: Lehi's report of the dream. That Nephi makes such a to-do right in the middle of that most important event is rather curious, and the very disruption deserves some attention, since it suggests that Nephi moves from simple abridgment to a sort of historical transition right in the middle of that event. But this is too vague. As this verse makes clear, Lehi comes to the conclusion "of speaking the words of his dream, and also of exhorting them to all diligence," and he goes on to speak of another subject, quite specifically, "concerning the Jews." In other words, though Nephi returns to the very same event--though the disruption certainly disrupts a single event--he splits the event into two great parts, two halves, and he seems to locate the shift from abridgment to transition right in the middle of the event: Lehi's subject in chapter 8 should be understood to be a part of Lehi's record, but the subject in chapter 10 must be understood to be otherwise, in fact, a part of Nephi's transition from Lehi's record to his own subject matter. In short, the transition opens with this business of "the Jews," precisely where the vision of the tree of life leaves off.

Something of major importance for a structural reading of Nephi's two books emerges here. Chapter 8, taken up as it is with Lehi's own family, with his descendants, and hence, with his (the "Lehitic") covenant, confirms quite explicitly the concern of Lehi's record and hence of Nephi's abridgment of the same: the covenant that grounds the Lehites (Nephites and Lamanites considered together). That chapter 10 broadens these sorts of questions is of vital importance: here, it is a question of the Jews, and within a few verses, it becomes also a question of the Gentiles and of Israel. The transition Nephi is making, beginning with this chapter, is a transition from questions of the Lehites to questions of all Israel and their interrelations with the Gentiles. Put more strictly: the transition Nephi is working out here is a transition from the "Lehitic" covenant to the Abrahamic covenant. This transition, marking a curious relation between two major covenants (two major covenant peoples), begins to lay the foundation for a most fascinating double record: Nephi's two books are a masterpiece of intertwined themes, the two most important of which themes are the Lehitic and Abrahamic covenants.

Perhaps worth mentioning before proceeding on, then, to the first real discussion of the Abrahamic covenant, is the fact that Nephi (cited Lehi) centers this question first and foremost in "the Jews." Whatever part Israel and the Gentiles will play, the very possibility of the Abrahamic covenant begins with the Jews and the events described concerning them in the next few verses.

[edit] Verse 3

This verse does not report anything earth-shattering about the Jews, only some historical facts that just about any serious reader of the Book of Mormon already knows. Of course, it is significant that Lehi is stating all of this before it happens (a few years before the one event, a few decades before the other). Read closely, the verse is focused on the return, but this could not have been too overwhelming an insight for Lehi: if "Second Isaiah" had indeed been written at the time, as the Book of Mormon seems quite clearly to conclude, then the idea would have been familiar to any reader of the scriptures (Isaiah does not exactly bury this prophecy in a mystery). In short, Lehi just begins to lay out the next few decades of Jewish history, as Isaiah writes it out in his writings. But there are a few curiosities about the phrasing of this verse that should draw the attention and that call for comment: there is more at work here than a simple prediction of events in Jewish history.

Last things first, the next verse makes quite clear that Lehi is not looking to the return from exile as the celebrated event of his prophetic word, but rather the coming of the Messiah. In fact, the wording, as it spreads across these two verses together, suggests that Lehi is unaware for the most part of when the return will be accomplished. The "Yea, even" that opens verse 4 seems quite clearly to suggest that Lehi understood the return from exile to have something to do with the arrival of the Messiah (perhaps not quite unlike the understanding so often--whether or not justifiably--attributed to the Jews: that of a Messiah who would come specifically to lead to a restoration of the land). In other words, Lehi's prophecy is rather uncertain temporally: it may be that he believes the Jews will return to the land of Israel only after six hundred years. At any rate, it is clear that the return itself is focused on the coming of the Messiah, rather than on the building of the second temple, the purification of Judea, etc.

All of this points to some consideration of the final phrase of verse 3: the return from captivity is a question of "possess[ing] again the land of their inheritance." From the very beginning, the Abrahamic covenant is brought to bear on this question. The return--clearly associated with the Messiah--is a question of fulfilling the ancient covenant. Lehi's picture, with this detail, grows rather complicated, and some confusions must be clarified.

[edit] Verse 4

As pointed out above, the "Yea, even" of this verse seems to suggest that Lehi understands the events of verses 3 and 4 to be a single event (though the reader of the Book of Mormon inevitably understands them to be two separate events, the return from exile in the sixth century B.C. and the birth of Christ some five centuries or so later). The point is vastly important, as becomes clear when one takes the Christology of the Book of Mormon into account as well. There is, to this point in the Book of Mormon, only a single reference to the Messiah (in 1 Ne 1:19). That is, Nephi never mentions the Son, the Redeemer, the Savior, the Messiah, the Christ, etc., etc., etc., except for that single verse in his first chapter (where the reference suggests nothing out of the ordinary for seventh or sixth century B.C. Israelite thought). Here, however, when the event of the Messiah's coming is unfolded in Lehi's discourse, Nephi suddenly employs almost every Book of Mormon name for the Son: "Messiah" and "Savior" in this verse, "Redeemer" in the next," "Lamb of God" in verse 10, and "the Son of God" in verse 17. Curiously, the Christology of the Book of Mormon emerges quite suddenly in this single prophetic discourse. But perhaps this is no surprise: the entire theology of the Abrahamic covenant in the Book of Mormon emerges quite suddenly in the course of the same discourse. In the end, the two are so profoundly intertwined in this discourse that one must recognize in Nephite theology the central interrelation between the Abrahamic covenant and the Christ.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] Verse 1

  • If Nephi said his smaller plates record "the ministry of my people" (1 Ne 9:3) and his larger plates record "the reign of the kings" (1 Ne 9:4), then why is he saying in this verse that the particular plates he is writing in at that moment (i.e., his smaller plates) contain an account of both "my reign and ministry"?

[edit] Verse 2

  • Did Lehi switch to talking about the Jews after discussing his dream because the history of the Jews he was about to relate represented a partial interpretation of the dream?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Why is the "due time" of the Lord not mentioned in the Old Testament?

[edit] Verse 4

  • Is Christ first called a prophet in this abbreviated history of the Jews because for the first three decades of his life that was all the Jews knew him as?

[edit] Verse 5

  • Is Lehi saying the previous prophets agreed with him or that he agreed with his predecessors?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Why does Lehi use the word "lost" in this verse if it means something cannot be found, recovered, or regained?
  • Who lost us and how will we be found?

[edit] Verse 7

  • How long had the Jews lived without a prophet before the arrival of this one?

[edit] Verse 8

  • Why will John the Baptist come before Christ?

[edit] Verse 9

  • Why must Christ be baptized?

[edit] Verse 10

  • Where did he take our sins?


[edit] Resources

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  • See Noel Reynolds' article "Nephi's Outline" on pages 53-74 in Book of Mormon Authorship, published by FARMS and edited by Noel Reynolds ([ISBN 0934893187]). The table mentioned in the exegesis above is found on page 58.


[edit] Notes

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Previous page: Chapter 10                      Next page: Verse 10:11-16

1 Ne 10:11-15

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 10 > Verses 11-16
Previous page: Verses 10:1-10                      Next page: Verse 10:17-22

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of Verses 11-16 to the rest of Chapter 10 is discussed at First Nephi 10.


[edit] Discussion

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[edit] Verse 11

This verse marks the first use of the word "Gentile" in the Book of Mormon, and it, like 1 Ne 1:2 with the Jews and 1 Ne 5:9 with Israel, should be taken as the point of departure for all consideration of the meaning of the term throughout the Book of Mormon. Perhaps this text (verses 11-15) is, in the end, the source for considering for the first time comprehensively the relation of the Gentiles and Israel. Significantly, the preceding passage (verses 2-10) also takes up the third term of interest here: the Jews. In other words, from verse 2 all the way through verse 15 here, Nephi lays out what must be understood as the first systematic working out of the interrelations of the Jews, the Gentiles, and Israel. Any subsequent discussion of this point is related quite closely to this chapter.

Perhaps the real point of departure, however, is the question of a vision of two trees.

Also making its first appearance in this verse is the title "Holy Ghost." Though the "Spirit" and even the "Holy Spirit" appear in Nephi's text before this point, the exact title of "Holy Ghost" does not occur until here. It is likely quite significant that the Holy Ghost only comes into question with this business of the Jews and the Gentiles. In fact, it turns out that after Nephi introduces this question of the Holy Ghost here and follows it up a few times in the visions of the history of Israel, the Jews, and the Gentiles, any reference to the "Holy Ghost" as such disappears until 2 Ne 26:13. This gap is certainly significant, especially considering the fact that "Spirit" occurs dozens and dozens of times throughout Nephi's two books ("Holy Spirit" only occurs three times, and in each it might well be written "holy Spirit," with "holy" as a qualifier rather than as part of a title, as in "Holy Ghost").

At the very least, all of this seems to suggest that the Holy Ghost should be understood in a very specific role, as something that only has to do with the intertwining dealings of the Jews, the Gentiles, and Israel more broadly. In other words, the Holy Ghost, as Holy Ghost, might be something that only emerges with the question of the Abrahamic covenant. There is certainly something of a hint of this idea in 3 Nephi as well (one should note that "Holy Ghost" only occurs eight times between the Book of Jacob and the teachings of Jesus in 3 Nephi... and all eight references are quotations from or discussions of Alma the Younger, whose connection with the small plates is undeniable). Whatever these facts suggest, they at least point to the possibility of reading the emergence of a strict "Trinity" only with the full weight of the Abrahamic covenant. What this means remains, obviously, to be worked out at length.

[edit] Verse 14

Sometimes the house of Israel is used to include anyone who has joined the church. In this context though there seems to be a distinction between the Gentiles that receive the fulness of the Gospel and the remnants of the house of Israel. Presumably then the house of Israel in this case refers to the literal descendants of Israel.

[edit] Verse 16

This verse seems to mark a transition, as promised in verse 1, from talking about "the things of my father, and also of my brethren" to continuing his narrative of "proceedings" in the wilderness.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] Verse 11

  • Did Nephi immediatly assimalate new terms, like "Holy Ghost," from his father's vocabulary or did he pick them up in later years, as he became more acquainted with the language of the brass plates?

[edit] Verse 12

  • If Lehi was comparing only the "house of Israel" to an "olive tree," then why did he say "they" rather than "it"?

[edit] Verse 13

  • What does it mean to be "led with one accord"?

[edit] Verse 14

  • Did Nephi decide to summarize ("in fine," which means "in short") because he wanted to focus on the gathering rather than the scattering?

[edit] Verse 15

  • Why is Nephi the only prophet who talks about the "manner of language"?

[edit] Verse 16

  • Weren't the prophecies and recording of them upon plates still left undone?


[edit] Resources

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[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 10:1-10                      Next page: Verse 10:17-22

1 Ne 10:16-22

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 10 > Verses 17-22
Previous page: Verses 10:11-16                      Next page: Chapter 11

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of Verses 17-22 to the rest of Chapter 10 is discussed at First Nephi 10.


[edit] Discussion

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[edit] Verse 17

  • Nephi says that he wants to see, hear and know of the things that his Father had seen in a vision. The next phrase "by the power of the Holy Ghost" suggests that Nephi desires that through the power of the Holy Ghost he will see, hear and know what his Father saw and heard.

[edit] Verse 19

[edit] Mysteries of God

  • In this verse Nephi says the mysteries of God shall be unfolded unto those who diligently seek them. When referring to the mysteries of God, the verb unfolded is often used. See Jacob 4:18, Mosiah 8:19, Alma 40:3, and D&C 10:64.
  • While we don't know exactly what word is being translated here as "mysteries", in the New Testament the English word "mystery" is a translation of the Greek noun musterion, which originally meant the secret teachings and religious rites of ancient religious orders--such as the Orphic mysteries.
  • One way to interpret the "mysteries of God" in the scriptures is read them as a reference to temple ordinances.

[edit] One eternal round

[edit] Verse 19 generally

  • The Book of Mormon often uses the phrase "power of the Holy Ghost" to speak of something apparently beyond what Latter-day Saints generally call "feeling the Spirit" or even "learning by the Spirit." (A most important such example would be Moro 10:3-5, which contextually goes on to speak of the several gifts of the Spirit, revelation, translation, etc.) That Nephi here speaks of the power of the Holy Ghost in such an exalted situation emphasizes this same point: Nephi understands the experience of the Holy Ghost to be an experience of full-blown revelation, to come to know the "mysteries of God" (understood in whatever sense) as those "of old" and as those "in times to come" (even at the Second Coming?). If, indeed, "the course of the Lord is one eternal round," Nephi seems to be suggesting that the Holy Ghost brings upon one the most exalted and magnificent revelations, perhaps even the revelation of the Son of God.
  • We cannot passively await for the delivery of knowledge by the Holy Ghost. The Lord says he that we must go looking for it. Half-hearted attempts will not be rewarded. The point is to hunger and thirst after this revelation. It is our passion and pursuit that will qualify us for the mysteries.

[edit] Verse 20

Perhaps it is only based on the foregoing remarks that verse 20 can be seen to fit into this passage: because of the exalted character of revelation through the Holy Ghost, because that possibility remains entirely open to all those who would seek the same revelations of the prophets of old, judgment is just and to be constantly kept in mind.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 17

  • Was Nephi so specific about the multiple ways he wanted to experience revelation because he was influenced by Dan 5:23?

[edit] Verse 18

  • Why is the word "today" (and its alternative spelling in this verse, "to-day") not used in the Bible?

[edit] Verse 19

  • How could the Holy Ghost have revealed truth to people at all points during human history if the Gift of the Holy Ghost was not available during Christ's ministry?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was the wording of this verse influenced by Eccl 11:9?

[edit] Verse 21

  • How can we reconcile this verse with Lam 3:31?

[edit] Verse 22

  • Did this verse influence the wording in Moro 8:16?


[edit] Resources

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[edit] Verse 19

  • "One eternal round." See "Taking Joseph's Ring Analogy Seriusly" by Geoff J. at the New Cool Thang blog for some quotes by Joseph Smith on existence being like a ring. Whether or not the ring analogy is useful for thinking about this phrase, "one eternal round" is debateable, but it does seem like one way to think about this phrase.


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 10:11-16                      Next page: Chapter 11

1 Ne 11:1-5

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:1-11
Previous page: Chapter 11                      Next page: Verses 11:12-23

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[edit] Summary

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The relationship of Verses 1-11 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

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  • Compare Nephi's 'formula' for having the mysteries of God unfolded to Alma's formula for nourishing a seed of faith in Alma 32:41: (1) have desire, (2) nourish this desire with faith, diligence and patience.

At the end of the last chapter Nephi tells us that the mysteries of God would be unfolded to him "that diligently seeketh" 1 Ne 10:19. Then in the last verse of that chapter Nephi tells us that he has authority from the Holy Ghost to make that promise. Now, with the first word of this verse, for, Nephi connects his upcoming description of his vision with that claim to authority. This description of his vision is justification for his claim to authority to make that promise. Specifically Nephi will show us that the Lord does unfold the mysteries of God to the person who diligently seeks.

If the central reason for Nephi to tell us about his vision is to show us that the Lord fulfills his promise, then part of the point of the next part of verse one is to explain what we must do to have the mysteries of God unfolded to us. Like Nephi, we must 1) have a desire to know and 2) have faith.

Nephi's faith was a belief that "the Lord was able to make" the things his father had seen known to him rather than a belief that the Lord would make them known to him. It may be that Nephi lacked confidence that the Lord would make these things known to him. Compare this with his brothers. Similarly, they desired to understand the words of their father. But, their belief that their questions to the Lord would not be answered prevented them from even asking 1 Ne 15:9. Nephi may not have had confidence that the Lord would make the things his father had seen known to him, but he did have faith that the Lord could do so. And clearly Nephi's faith was sufficient, for while he is pondering he is taken away in vision.

Nephi's vision seems to parallel the modern and ancient temple rituals, with progression from one location to others, possible washing at the fountain of living waters, the tree comparision to the Celestial room, the woman and her child legends in the temple of Solomon, having one's family together at the end of the journey, midsts of darkness and testing and adherence to the word of God, the mocking or teachings of man often mixed with scripture, having a testimony of the living prophet prior to induction, teaching of Christ and the Atonement, the pre-eminence of the original Tweleve Apostles, and other things which Nephi is forbidden to write, etc.

[edit] Verse 1

  • "Had desired" shows that the action was completed in the past.
  • The root of the word "ponder" is "to weigh."
  • In the Old Testament, the heart stands for the person as a whole. It probably has the same meaning here.

[edit] Verse 6

  • The word "hosanna" is a transliteration of a Hebrew word meaning "save, please" or "save now."

[edit] Verse 7

  • "Behold" means "look," but it is used here as a narrative particle to get Nephi's attention and to emphasize what follows.
  • "Him shall ye witness" is inverted grammatically: "You will witness him."

[edit] Verse 8

  • "Look": another narrative particle, like behold in verse 7.

[edit] Verse 11

  • "The Spirit of the Lord" is a phrase used in the scripture 71 times. Looking at the other references this title seems most closely identified with the role of the Holy Ghost.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 1

  • What does it mean that Nephi desired to "know the things" that his father had "seen"? Why does he pray to "know" them rather than to "see" them?
  • How does Nephi's desire to know what his father had seen (see 1 Ne 10:17), presumably a desire expressed in prayer, differ from his prayer in 1 Ne 2:16?
  • What is the difference in the faith expressed by someone who believes that the Lord can do something versus one who believes the Lord will do something? When is each appropriate?
  • Why does this vision occur on a high mountain?
  • What might Nephi have been pondering in his heart?
  • How is Nephi's experience like that of others? What significance do you see in those parallels?
  • Can the "exceedingly high mountain" be compared to a temple experience? If so, what parallells are there between modern and Jewish temple rites and the tree of life vision? Is Nephi and Lehi's vision an endowment for their dispensation?

[edit] Verses 2, 4

  • Is the personage who responds to Nephi's desire here the same being who responded to Lehi in 1 Ne 1:5-6?
  • Why does the Spirit start to address Nephi with the "behold"?
  • The Spirit already knows the answers to the questions that he asks Nephi, so why does he ask?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Why didn't Nephi say that he wanted to know the things that his father had learned from his vision? What is the difference between his wanting to "know" in vs. 1 and his desiring to "behold" in this verse?

[edit] Verse 5

  • In what tone of voice did Nephi say this?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Having asked Nephi what he wants and what he believes, the Spirit then praises God before proceeding with the revelation. Why?
  • Why does the Spirit's address to Nephi begin with hosanna, a praise of God? Note that the second clause begins with "for," which seems to me "because" in this context. Does this help us understand the cry of hosanna?
  • According to the Spirit, what will explain why Nephi will see the vision he wants to see?

[edit] Verse 7

  • Why does the Spirit tell Nephi what he is going to see before he sees it? Is this somehow similar to how Nephi gives us the full story of 1 Nephi in the intro to the book before really launching into the story? Is there a pattern here?
  • The Spirit tells Nephi that seeing the Son will be a sign. A sign of or for what?
  • The Spirit uses the word "witness" to mean "see" in this verse rather than to mean "testify" or "bear record." Why, then, does he use the word "witness" rather than the word "see"?
  • Lehi tastes the fruit, but Nephi seems to just see the tree in his vision. Why is that? Why doesn't Nephi report that he ate the fruit?

[edit] Verse 8

  • Before Lehi saw the tree, he went through a dark and dreary space and a large and spacious field (1 Nephi 8:7-9). Why do you think those things are omitted from Nephi's experience?
  • Is it significant that Nephi says the tree he saw was "like" the tree his father saw (verse 8)?
  • Do we know what tree Nephi sees? If so, how?
  • Why is the tree beautiful? What is the connection between the goodness of the tree and its beauty?
  • What is the significance of the whiteness of the tree? What does it mean that its whiteness "did exceed the whiteness of the driven snow"?

[edit] Verse 9

  • How does Nephi know that the tree is precious?
  • What does it mean that the tree "is precious above all"?

[edit] Verse 10

  • The Spirit asks the same question that he asked in verse 2. Why?
  • Is there some sense in which this is the beginning of a second vision?
  • If so, what is the connection between the two visions?

[edit] Verse 11

  • What has Nephi seen so far?
  • When he asks for "the interpretation thereof," what does he want to have explained for him?
  • Nephi identifies the Spirit as the Spirit of the Lord. Does he mean the Holy Ghost or the Son?
  • Why does Nephi tell us that he spoke with the Spirit as one person speaks with another? How is that relevant to this particular story?
  • How does the vision that follows correlate with Lehi's vision and, if what follows is an interpretation of the beautiful tree, what does that tell us about Lehi's vision?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 11                      Next page: Verses 11:12-23

1 Ne 11:6-10

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:1-11
Previous page: Chapter 11                      Next page: Verses 11:12-23

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[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 1-11 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

  • Compare Nephi's 'formula' for having the mysteries of God unfolded to Alma's formula for nourishing a seed of faith in Alma 32:41: (1) have desire, (2) nourish this desire with faith, diligence and patience.

At the end of the last chapter Nephi tells us that the mysteries of God would be unfolded to him "that diligently seeketh" 1 Ne 10:19. Then in the last verse of that chapter Nephi tells us that he has authority from the Holy Ghost to make that promise. Now, with the first word of this verse, for, Nephi connects his upcoming description of his vision with that claim to authority. This description of his vision is justification for his claim to authority to make that promise. Specifically Nephi will show us that the Lord does unfold the mysteries of God to the person who diligently seeks.

If the central reason for Nephi to tell us about his vision is to show us that the Lord fulfills his promise, then part of the point of the next part of verse one is to explain what we must do to have the mysteries of God unfolded to us. Like Nephi, we must 1) have a desire to know and 2) have faith.

Nephi's faith was a belief that "the Lord was able to make" the things his father had seen known to him rather than a belief that the Lord would make them known to him. It may be that Nephi lacked confidence that the Lord would make these things known to him. Compare this with his brothers. Similarly, they desired to understand the words of their father. But, their belief that their questions to the Lord would not be answered prevented them from even asking 1 Ne 15:9. Nephi may not have had confidence that the Lord would make the things his father had seen known to him, but he did have faith that the Lord could do so. And clearly Nephi's faith was sufficient, for while he is pondering he is taken away in vision.

Nephi's vision seems to parallel the modern and ancient temple rituals, with progression from one location to others, possible washing at the fountain of living waters, the tree comparision to the Celestial room, the woman and her child legends in the temple of Solomon, having one's family together at the end of the journey, midsts of darkness and testing and adherence to the word of God, the mocking or teachings of man often mixed with scripture, having a testimony of the living prophet prior to induction, teaching of Christ and the Atonement, the pre-eminence of the original Tweleve Apostles, and other things which Nephi is forbidden to write, etc.

[edit] Verse 1

  • "Had desired" shows that the action was completed in the past.
  • The root of the word "ponder" is "to weigh."
  • In the Old Testament, the heart stands for the person as a whole. It probably has the same meaning here.

[edit] Verse 6

  • The word "hosanna" is a transliteration of a Hebrew word meaning "save, please" or "save now."

[edit] Verse 7

  • "Behold" means "look," but it is used here as a narrative particle to get Nephi's attention and to emphasize what follows.
  • "Him shall ye witness" is inverted grammatically: "You will witness him."

[edit] Verse 8

  • "Look": another narrative particle, like behold in verse 7.

[edit] Verse 11

  • "The Spirit of the Lord" is a phrase used in the scripture 71 times. Looking at the other references this title seems most closely identified with the role of the Holy Ghost.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 1

  • What does it mean that Nephi desired to "know the things" that his father had "seen"? Why does he pray to "know" them rather than to "see" them?
  • How does Nephi's desire to know what his father had seen (see 1 Ne 10:17), presumably a desire expressed in prayer, differ from his prayer in 1 Ne 2:16?
  • What is the difference in the faith expressed by someone who believes that the Lord can do something versus one who believes the Lord will do something? When is each appropriate?
  • Why does this vision occur on a high mountain?
  • What might Nephi have been pondering in his heart?
  • How is Nephi's experience like that of others? What significance do you see in those parallels?
  • Can the "exceedingly high mountain" be compared to a temple experience? If so, what parallells are there between modern and Jewish temple rites and the tree of life vision? Is Nephi and Lehi's vision an endowment for their dispensation?

[edit] Verses 2, 4

  • Is the personage who responds to Nephi's desire here the same being who responded to Lehi in 1 Ne 1:5-6?
  • Why does the Spirit start to address Nephi with the "behold"?
  • The Spirit already knows the answers to the questions that he asks Nephi, so why does he ask?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Why didn't Nephi say that he wanted to know the things that his father had learned from his vision? What is the difference between his wanting to "know" in vs. 1 and his desiring to "behold" in this verse?

[edit] Verse 5

  • In what tone of voice did Nephi say this?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Having asked Nephi what he wants and what he believes, the Spirit then praises God before proceeding with the revelation. Why?
  • Why does the Spirit's address to Nephi begin with hosanna, a praise of God? Note that the second clause begins with "for," which seems to me "because" in this context. Does this help us understand the cry of hosanna?
  • According to the Spirit, what will explain why Nephi will see the vision he wants to see?

[edit] Verse 7

  • Why does the Spirit tell Nephi what he is going to see before he sees it? Is this somehow similar to how Nephi gives us the full story of 1 Nephi in the intro to the book before really launching into the story? Is there a pattern here?
  • The Spirit tells Nephi that seeing the Son will be a sign. A sign of or for what?
  • The Spirit uses the word "witness" to mean "see" in this verse rather than to mean "testify" or "bear record." Why, then, does he use the word "witness" rather than the word "see"?
  • Lehi tastes the fruit, but Nephi seems to just see the tree in his vision. Why is that? Why doesn't Nephi report that he ate the fruit?

[edit] Verse 8

  • Before Lehi saw the tree, he went through a dark and dreary space and a large and spacious field (1 Nephi 8:7-9). Why do you think those things are omitted from Nephi's experience?
  • Is it significant that Nephi says the tree he saw was "like" the tree his father saw (verse 8)?
  • Do we know what tree Nephi sees? If so, how?
  • Why is the tree beautiful? What is the connection between the goodness of the tree and its beauty?
  • What is the significance of the whiteness of the tree? What does it mean that its whiteness "did exceed the whiteness of the driven snow"?

[edit] Verse 9

  • How does Nephi know that the tree is precious?
  • What does it mean that the tree "is precious above all"?

[edit] Verse 10

  • The Spirit asks the same question that he asked in verse 2. Why?
  • Is there some sense in which this is the beginning of a second vision?
  • If so, what is the connection between the two visions?

[edit] Verse 11

  • What has Nephi seen so far?
  • When he asks for "the interpretation thereof," what does he want to have explained for him?
  • Nephi identifies the Spirit as the Spirit of the Lord. Does he mean the Holy Ghost or the Son?
  • Why does Nephi tell us that he spoke with the Spirit as one person speaks with another? How is that relevant to this particular story?
  • How does the vision that follows correlate with Lehi's vision and, if what follows is an interpretation of the beautiful tree, what does that tell us about Lehi's vision?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 11                      Next page: Verses 11:12-23

1 Ne 11:11-15

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:12-23
Previous page: Verses 11:1-11                      Next page: Verses 11:24-36

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 12-23 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

As noted on the previous page, the Spirit of the Lord, is often used with a role generally associated with the Holy Ghost. By itself verse 11 is unclear whether the title here refers to the Holy Ghost or the Son of God. The nevertheless in "I beheld that he was in the form of a man; yet nevertheless, I knew that it was the Spirit of the Lord" and the title "Spirit ..." both suggest that the being Nephi spoke with did not have a body. Of course, not having a body is a characteristic of both the Holy Ghost and the Son at this time. However, this same title "Spirit of the Lord" is used to refer to a being in the New Testament at the time that Jesus did have a body. Assuming that the title consistently refers to the same being throughout the scriptures, suggests that this is the Holy Ghost. Note however that there are other examples where the same title in the scriptures is applied to different members of the Godhead. The fact the Godhead is one in purpose may explain why the scriptures don't make more of a point of always making it clear which member of the Godhead is playing what role. It may that it is a matter of little significance.

[edit] Verse 13

  • "Fair and white" is a hendiadys, in other words, it uses two words, connected by "and," to say the same thing.

[edit] Verse 15

[edit] Verse 16

  • As used here, the word "condescension" means "a voluntary stoop or descent from one's rightful position."

[edit] Verse 18

  • "After the manner of the flesh" most likely modifies "the mother of the Son of God," but it could also modify "Son of God."

[edit] Verse 22

  • "Love of God, which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men" = "love of God that pours itself into our hearts."


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 12

  • Do you see any significance in the repetition of "look" in verses 8 and 12?
  • Does the repeated command to "look" take on extra significance from Nephi's statement that he had "seen many afflictions in the course of [his] days" (1 Ne 1:1)?
  • How does the vision that Nephi has answer his quest for an interpretation of the tree that he saw in vision?
  • Why doesn't Lehi's dream include this interpretation of the tree?
  • Why did the Spirit disappear?

[edit] Verse 13

  • Why is Nephi shown a vision of Mary after asking for an interpretation of the tree? What is the connection between Mary and the Tree of Life or the Love of God?
  • What do you make of the fact that verses 13 and 15 describe the virgin in the same language used in verses 8-9 to describe the tree?
  • In the Old Testament, the prophets frequently have to deal with people who worship the goddess Asherah, whose symbol is a pole or tree. In Canaanite religion, Asherah was the queen of heaven, the consort of El, and the mother of the gods. Does Nephi's vision help us understand better why the Israelites might have found Canaanite religion so easy to adopt?

[edit] Verse 14

  • An angel appears before Nephi and continues the pattern of asking him questions about his beliefs and, now, what he has seen. What is the point of that pattern?
  • Why did the Spirit disappear only to be replaced by an angel?
  • What does it mean to see "the heavens open"?

[edit] Verse 15

  • What was the source of the virgin's beauty?

[edit] Verse 16

  • What exactly is the condescension of God?
  • Why does the angel ask Nephi about the condescension of God rather than about something else?
  • It is relatively easy to see what condescension has to do with the part of the vision that is about to come, but does it have anything to do with what Nephi has already seen?

[edit] Verse 17

  • How is Nephi's answer, "I know that he loveth his children," an answer to the angel's question?

Why does Nephi add "I do not know the meaning of all things"? Since no human being does, that is a strange thing to say.

[edit] Verse 18

  • How is verse 18 related to the question of verse 16?

[edit] Verse 19

  • There is a kind of empty spot in the vision here: the virgin is carried away and then, after a while, reappears, and as far as we know Nephi sees nothing in the interim (verse 19). Why do you think the vision might have been given in that way? Why not proceed directly to the part of the vision that we see in verse 20?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was the vision temporarily silent about the virgin because of the sacred nature of her conception?

[edit] Verse 21

  • Having shown Nephi the birth of Jesus, the angel asks whether Nephi now understands the meaning of the tree. How is the birth of Christ the interpretation of or explanation of the tree?
  • Having seen the birth, Nephi says that the tree is the love of God. How does he get that from what he has seen?
  • What does it mean that the love of God "sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men"? (Compare Rom 5:5.)

[edit] Verses 22-23

  • In verse 8 Nephi saw that the tree was the most beautiful thing and the most white, in other words, brightest thing. In verse 9 he saw that it was most precious. Now Nephi sees that it is most desirable (verse 22), and the angel says that it is the most joyous thing to the soul (verse 23). How are these things connected to each other?
  • What does "joyous to the soul" mean? Does it mean the same as "joyous for the soul"?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 11

  • See comments here about Elder Bruce R. McConkie's interpretation of the Spirit of the Lord as a reference to Jesus Christ.

[edit] Verse 13

  • "Nephi and His Asherah": In this FARMS article, Daniel C. Peterson discusses the connection Nephi may have made between the virgin mother described in this verse and the symbolism of the tree in Lehi's dream based on ancient Canaanite and Israelite associations. (Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, Volume: 9 Issue: 2 Provo, Utah: FARMS, 2000, pp. 16–25)


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 11:1-11                      Next page: Verses 11:24-36

1 Ne 11:16-20

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:12-23
Previous page: Verses 11:1-11                      Next page: Verses 11:24-36

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 12-23 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

As noted on the previous page, the Spirit of the Lord, is often used with a role generally associated with the Holy Ghost. By itself verse 11 is unclear whether the title here refers to the Holy Ghost or the Son of God. The nevertheless in "I beheld that he was in the form of a man; yet nevertheless, I knew that it was the Spirit of the Lord" and the title "Spirit ..." both suggest that the being Nephi spoke with did not have a body. Of course, not having a body is a characteristic of both the Holy Ghost and the Son at this time. However, this same title "Spirit of the Lord" is used to refer to a being in the New Testament at the time that Jesus did have a body. Assuming that the title consistently refers to the same being throughout the scriptures, suggests that this is the Holy Ghost. Note however that there are other examples where the same title in the scriptures is applied to different members of the Godhead. The fact the Godhead is one in purpose may explain why the scriptures don't make more of a point of always making it clear which member of the Godhead is playing what role. It may that it is a matter of little significance.

[edit] Verse 13

  • "Fair and white" is a hendiadys, in other words, it uses two words, connected by "and," to say the same thing.

[edit] Verse 15

[edit] Verse 16

  • As used here, the word "condescension" means "a voluntary stoop or descent from one's rightful position."

[edit] Verse 18

  • "After the manner of the flesh" most likely modifies "the mother of the Son of God," but it could also modify "Son of God."

[edit] Verse 22

  • "Love of God, which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men" = "love of God that pours itself into our hearts."


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 12

  • Do you see any significance in the repetition of "look" in verses 8 and 12?
  • Does the repeated command to "look" take on extra significance from Nephi's statement that he had "seen many afflictions in the course of [his] days" (1 Ne 1:1)?
  • How does the vision that Nephi has answer his quest for an interpretation of the tree that he saw in vision?
  • Why doesn't Lehi's dream include this interpretation of the tree?
  • Why did the Spirit disappear?

[edit] Verse 13

  • Why is Nephi shown a vision of Mary after asking for an interpretation of the tree? What is the connection between Mary and the Tree of Life or the Love of God?
  • What do you make of the fact that verses 13 and 15 describe the virgin in the same language used in verses 8-9 to describe the tree?
  • In the Old Testament, the prophets frequently have to deal with people who worship the goddess Asherah, whose symbol is a pole or tree. In Canaanite religion, Asherah was the queen of heaven, the consort of El, and the mother of the gods. Does Nephi's vision help us understand better why the Israelites might have found Canaanite religion so easy to adopt?

[edit] Verse 14

  • An angel appears before Nephi and continues the pattern of asking him questions about his beliefs and, now, what he has seen. What is the point of that pattern?
  • Why did the Spirit disappear only to be replaced by an angel?
  • What does it mean to see "the heavens open"?

[edit] Verse 15

  • What was the source of the virgin's beauty?

[edit] Verse 16

  • What exactly is the condescension of God?
  • Why does the angel ask Nephi about the condescension of God rather than about something else?
  • It is relatively easy to see what condescension has to do with the part of the vision that is about to come, but does it have anything to do with what Nephi has already seen?

[edit] Verse 17

  • How is Nephi's answer, "I know that he loveth his children," an answer to the angel's question?

Why does Nephi add "I do not know the meaning of all things"? Since no human being does, that is a strange thing to say.

[edit] Verse 18

  • How is verse 18 related to the question of verse 16?

[edit] Verse 19

  • There is a kind of empty spot in the vision here: the virgin is carried away and then, after a while, reappears, and as far as we know Nephi sees nothing in the interim (verse 19). Why do you think the vision might have been given in that way? Why not proceed directly to the part of the vision that we see in verse 20?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was the vision temporarily silent about the virgin because of the sacred nature of her conception?

[edit] Verse 21

  • Having shown Nephi the birth of Jesus, the angel asks whether Nephi now understands the meaning of the tree. How is the birth of Christ the interpretation of or explanation of the tree?
  • Having seen the birth, Nephi says that the tree is the love of God. How does he get that from what he has seen?
  • What does it mean that the love of God "sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men"? (Compare Rom 5:5.)

[edit] Verses 22-23

  • In verse 8 Nephi saw that the tree was the most beautiful thing and the most white, in other words, brightest thing. In verse 9 he saw that it was most precious. Now Nephi sees that it is most desirable (verse 22), and the angel says that it is the most joyous thing to the soul (verse 23). How are these things connected to each other?
  • What does "joyous to the soul" mean? Does it mean the same as "joyous for the soul"?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 11

  • See comments here about Elder Bruce R. McConkie's interpretation of the Spirit of the Lord as a reference to Jesus Christ.

[edit] Verse 13

  • "Nephi and His Asherah": In this FARMS article, Daniel C. Peterson discusses the connection Nephi may have made between the virgin mother described in this verse and the symbolism of the tree in Lehi's dream based on ancient Canaanite and Israelite associations. (Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, Volume: 9 Issue: 2 Provo, Utah: FARMS, 2000, pp. 16–25)


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 11:1-11                      Next page: Verses 11:24-36

1 Ne 11:21-25

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:24-36
Previous page: Verses 11:12-23                      Next page: Chapter 12

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 24-36 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 24

  • Since, in this context, "fall down at his feet" and "worship him" mean the same, this is a case of hendiadys, using two words (or phrases) that mean the same and connecting them with "and."

[edit] Verse 25

  • "Word of God" can be understood in two ways: (1) as in Hebrews 11:3, where it means simply "God's words" or (more often) (2) God's revelations.
  • "Love of God" can also be understood in two ways: (1) the love a person has for God, and (2) the love God has for his children.

[edit] Verses 26-27

  • "And" is used nine times in these two verses, as the organizing word:
     And the angel said . . . behold the condescension of God!
     And I looked and beheld the Redeemer of the world . . .
     and I also beheld the prophet . . .
     And the Lamb of God went forth and was baptized of him;
     and after he was baptized, I beheld the heavens open,
         and the Holy Ghost come down out of heaven
         and abide upon him in the form of a dove.

[edit] Verse 27

  • "Way" means "road" or "path."
  • "Abide" means "dwell." Here it indicates that the Holy Ghost not only came on him, but stayed with him.

[edit] Verse 28

  • "To minister" = "to attend to," "to wait on," "to serve."
  • "In power and great glory" is probably a hendiadys.

[edit] Verse 29

  • Here "face" stands for the whole person.

[edit] Verse 30

  • This verse, like verses 26-27, is organized by the word "and":
1 And . . . the angel spake unto me again, saying:  Look!
2 And I looked,
3 and I beheld the heavens open again,
4 and I saw angels descending upon the children of men;
5 and they did minister unto them. 

Notice that lines 2, 3, and 4 are parallel to each other; each depends on a different, but synonymous verb for seeing. Each succeeding line of these three lines expands what the previous line tells us. The first line simply says "I looked." The second line expands that to say what Nephi saw when he looked. The third line expands that even further, giving us the details of what he saw: "I saw angels, etc."

[edit] Verse 31

  • Like verse 30, this verse is organized by "and":
1 And he spake unto me again, saying: Look!
2 And I looked,
3 and I beheld . . . among the children of men.
4 And I beheld multitudes of people who were sick,
5 	and who were afflicted with all manner of diseases,
6 		and with devils and unclean spirits;

7 and the angel spake and showed all these things unto me.  
8 And they were healed by the power of the Lamb of God; 
9 and the devils and the unclean spirits were cast out.  

The second part of the verse corresponds to the first. Line 1 is parallel to line 7. Lines 2 through 5 are parallel to line 8. And, line 6 is parallel to line 9. Lines 7 through 9, therefore, act as a kind of synopsis of lines 1 through 6.

[edit] Verses 32-33

These verses are complicated rhetorically. A diagram helps show the complexity:

1 And it came to pass that the angel spake . . . saying: Look!
2 And I looked and beheld the Lamb of God,
3        that he was taken by the people;
4        yea, the Son . . . was judged of the world;
5 and I saw and bear record. 
6 And I . . . saw that he was lifted up . . . the world. 

Line 1 introduces the verse. Lines 2 through 5 are a chiasm. Line 6 is parallel to line 5 in that it tells in more detail what Nephi saw and bears record of. But line 6 is also parallel to lines 3 and 4. Specifically, it tells how the people condemned the Lamb of God.

[edit] Verse 32

  • "Judged" is ambiguous. It can mean only "to hear a case, such as a legal case, and to make a decision in regards to it." But it can also mean "to condemn."
  • "Saw and bear record": though "saw" is in the past tense, "bear" is in the present tense. Nephi saw the vision in the past, but he now bears record through the Book of Mormon. (The same phrase appears in verse 36.)


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 24

  • How is verse 24 related to the verses that precede it? For example, does it explain what the angel says in verse 23?

[edit] Verse 25

  • How do the fountain of living waters and the tree of life both symbolize the love of God?
  • Why do you think that Nephi doesn't mention the contrasting river of filthy water in this part of his account, though he seems to have seen it? (Compare 1 Ne 8:13 and 1 Ne 15:26-29.)
  • Do you think that Nephi saw, as Lehi did, his family in his vision? (Compare 1 Ne 8:14-18.) If so, why doesn't he mention them? If not, why not?

[edit] Verse 26

  • Why are the vision of Christ's birth (verses 17-23) and the vision of his life (verses 27-34) both preceded by the angel describing them to Nephi as "the condescension of God"? In other words, why does verse 26 repeat verse 16?

[edit] Verse 27

  • Is there any particular reason that the name "Lamb of God" is used in this context?

[edit] Verses 28-29

  • Notice that the chronological order of the elements of the vision doesn't correspond to the historical order. What does that tell us about visions? About historical order?
  • Why might there be a break in the vision at this point, with a kind of end to the vision, followed by a new beginning in verse 30?

[edit] Verse 30

  • When did the event of this verse occur?
  • Since it seems to interrupt the flow of the vision of the Lamb of God, what does this vision of angelic ministrations have to do with that vision and the vision of the twelve?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Why does the vision include this relatively lengthy description of the physical and psychological healings that Jesus did?
  • How were they important to his mission of salvation?

[edit] Verses 32-33

  • Why does Nephi see a vision of the crucifixion of Jesus, but not of his resurrection?

[edit] Verses 34-36

  • Verse 34 tells us that the building is the wisdom of the world. If we compare that to 1 Nephi 8:26-27 we see that the world and its wisdom is derision of those who are outside. What does that mean?
  • 1 Ne 12:18 says that the building is human vain imaginations and pride. How do those three versions of the building fit with one another?
  • How do we participate in the "wisdom" of the world?
  • Why does the angel describe the occupants of the building as the house of Israel (verse 35)?
  • Don't the events to which this corresponds occur after the loss of the ten tribes?
  • What does "pride of the world" mean here (verse 36)?
  • All three of these verses speak of those who fight against the apostles. What fight are they speaking of? Why is it a fight against the apostles rather than against God?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 11:12-23                      Next page: Chapter 12

1 Ne 11:26-30

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:24-36
Previous page: Verses 11:12-23                      Next page: Chapter 12

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 24-36 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 24

  • Since, in this context, "fall down at his feet" and "worship him" mean the same, this is a case of hendiadys, using two words (or phrases) that mean the same and connecting them with "and."

[edit] Verse 25

  • "Word of God" can be understood in two ways: (1) as in Hebrews 11:3, where it means simply "God's words" or (more often) (2) God's revelations.
  • "Love of God" can also be understood in two ways: (1) the love a person has for God, and (2) the love God has for his children.

[edit] Verses 26-27

  • "And" is used nine times in these two verses, as the organizing word:
     And the angel said . . . behold the condescension of God!
     And I looked and beheld the Redeemer of the world . . .
     and I also beheld the prophet . . .
     And the Lamb of God went forth and was baptized of him;
     and after he was baptized, I beheld the heavens open,
         and the Holy Ghost come down out of heaven
         and abide upon him in the form of a dove.

[edit] Verse 27

  • "Way" means "road" or "path."
  • "Abide" means "dwell." Here it indicates that the Holy Ghost not only came on him, but stayed with him.

[edit] Verse 28

  • "To minister" = "to attend to," "to wait on," "to serve."
  • "In power and great glory" is probably a hendiadys.

[edit] Verse 29

  • Here "face" stands for the whole person.

[edit] Verse 30

  • This verse, like verses 26-27, is organized by the word "and":
1 And . . . the angel spake unto me again, saying:  Look!
2 And I looked,
3 and I beheld the heavens open again,
4 and I saw angels descending upon the children of men;
5 and they did minister unto them. 

Notice that lines 2, 3, and 4 are parallel to each other; each depends on a different, but synonymous verb for seeing. Each succeeding line of these three lines expands what the previous line tells us. The first line simply says "I looked." The second line expands that to say what Nephi saw when he looked. The third line expands that even further, giving us the details of what he saw: "I saw angels, etc."

[edit] Verse 31

  • Like verse 30, this verse is organized by "and":
1 And he spake unto me again, saying: Look!
2 And I looked,
3 and I beheld . . . among the children of men.
4 And I beheld multitudes of people who were sick,
5 	and who were afflicted with all manner of diseases,
6 		and with devils and unclean spirits;

7 and the angel spake and showed all these things unto me.  
8 And they were healed by the power of the Lamb of God; 
9 and the devils and the unclean spirits were cast out.  

The second part of the verse corresponds to the first. Line 1 is parallel to line 7. Lines 2 through 5 are parallel to line 8. And, line 6 is parallel to line 9. Lines 7 through 9, therefore, act as a kind of synopsis of lines 1 through 6.

[edit] Verses 32-33

These verses are complicated rhetorically. A diagram helps show the complexity:

1 And it came to pass that the angel spake . . . saying: Look!
2 And I looked and beheld the Lamb of God,
3        that he was taken by the people;
4        yea, the Son . . . was judged of the world;
5 and I saw and bear record. 
6 And I . . . saw that he was lifted up . . . the world. 

Line 1 introduces the verse. Lines 2 through 5 are a chiasm. Line 6 is parallel to line 5 in that it tells in more detail what Nephi saw and bears record of. But line 6 is also parallel to lines 3 and 4. Specifically, it tells how the people condemned the Lamb of God.

[edit] Verse 32

  • "Judged" is ambiguous. It can mean only "to hear a case, such as a legal case, and to make a decision in regards to it." But it can also mean "to condemn."
  • "Saw and bear record": though "saw" is in the past tense, "bear" is in the present tense. Nephi saw the vision in the past, but he now bears record through the Book of Mormon. (The same phrase appears in verse 36.)


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 24

  • How is verse 24 related to the verses that precede it? For example, does it explain what the angel says in verse 23?

[edit] Verse 25

  • How do the fountain of living waters and the tree of life both symbolize the love of God?
  • Why do you think that Nephi doesn't mention the contrasting river of filthy water in this part of his account, though he seems to have seen it? (Compare 1 Ne 8:13 and 1 Ne 15:26-29.)
  • Do you think that Nephi saw, as Lehi did, his family in his vision? (Compare 1 Ne 8:14-18.) If so, why doesn't he mention them? If not, why not?

[edit] Verse 26

  • Why are the vision of Christ's birth (verses 17-23) and the vision of his life (verses 27-34) both preceded by the angel describing them to Nephi as "the condescension of God"? In other words, why does verse 26 repeat verse 16?

[edit] Verse 27

  • Is there any particular reason that the name "Lamb of God" is used in this context?

[edit] Verses 28-29

  • Notice that the chronological order of the elements of the vision doesn't correspond to the historical order. What does that tell us about visions? About historical order?
  • Why might there be a break in the vision at this point, with a kind of end to the vision, followed by a new beginning in verse 30?

[edit] Verse 30

  • When did the event of this verse occur?
  • Since it seems to interrupt the flow of the vision of the Lamb of God, what does this vision of angelic ministrations have to do with that vision and the vision of the twelve?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Why does the vision include this relatively lengthy description of the physical and psychological healings that Jesus did?
  • How were they important to his mission of salvation?

[edit] Verses 32-33

  • Why does Nephi see a vision of the crucifixion of Jesus, but not of his resurrection?

[edit] Verses 34-36

  • Verse 34 tells us that the building is the wisdom of the world. If we compare that to 1 Nephi 8:26-27 we see that the world and its wisdom is derision of those who are outside. What does that mean?
  • 1 Ne 12:18 says that the building is human vain imaginations and pride. How do those three versions of the building fit with one another?
  • How do we participate in the "wisdom" of the world?
  • Why does the angel describe the occupants of the building as the house of Israel (verse 35)?
  • Don't the events to which this corresponds occur after the loss of the ten tribes?
  • What does "pride of the world" mean here (verse 36)?
  • All three of these verses speak of those who fight against the apostles. What fight are they speaking of? Why is it a fight against the apostles rather than against God?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 11:12-23                      Next page: Chapter 12

1 Ne 11:31-36

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 11 > Verses 11:24-36
Previous page: Verses 11:12-23                      Next page: Chapter 12

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 24-36 to the rest of Chapter 11 is discussed at First Nephi 11.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 24

  • Since, in this context, "fall down at his feet" and "worship him" mean the same, this is a case of hendiadys, using two words (or phrases) that mean the same and connecting them with "and."

[edit] Verse 25

  • "Word of God" can be understood in two ways: (1) as in Hebrews 11:3, where it means simply "God's words" or (more often) (2) God's revelations.
  • "Love of God" can also be understood in two ways: (1) the love a person has for God, and (2) the love God has for his children.

[edit] Verses 26-27

  • "And" is used nine times in these two verses, as the organizing word:
     And the angel said . . . behold the condescension of God!
     And I looked and beheld the Redeemer of the world . . .
     and I also beheld the prophet . . .
     And the Lamb of God went forth and was baptized of him;
     and after he was baptized, I beheld the heavens open,
         and the Holy Ghost come down out of heaven
         and abide upon him in the form of a dove.

[edit] Verse 27

  • "Way" means "road" or "path."
  • "Abide" means "dwell." Here it indicates that the Holy Ghost not only came on him, but stayed with him.

[edit] Verse 28

  • "To minister" = "to attend to," "to wait on," "to serve."
  • "In power and great glory" is probably a hendiadys.

[edit] Verse 29

  • Here "face" stands for the whole person.

[edit] Verse 30

  • This verse, like verses 26-27, is organized by the word "and":
1 And . . . the angel spake unto me again, saying:  Look!
2 And I looked,
3 and I beheld the heavens open again,
4 and I saw angels descending upon the children of men;
5 and they did minister unto them. 

Notice that lines 2, 3, and 4 are parallel to each other; each depends on a different, but synonymous verb for seeing. Each succeeding line of these three lines expands what the previous line tells us. The first line simply says "I looked." The second line expands that to say what Nephi saw when he looked. The third line expands that even further, giving us the details of what he saw: "I saw angels, etc."

[edit] Verse 31

  • Like verse 30, this verse is organized by "and":
1 And he spake unto me again, saying: Look!
2 And I looked,
3 and I beheld . . . among the children of men.
4 And I beheld multitudes of people who were sick,
5 	and who were afflicted with all manner of diseases,
6 		and with devils and unclean spirits;

7 and the angel spake and showed all these things unto me.  
8 And they were healed by the power of the Lamb of God; 
9 and the devils and the unclean spirits were cast out.  

The second part of the verse corresponds to the first. Line 1 is parallel to line 7. Lines 2 through 5 are parallel to line 8. And, line 6 is parallel to line 9. Lines 7 through 9, therefore, act as a kind of synopsis of lines 1 through 6.

[edit] Verses 32-33

These verses are complicated rhetorically. A diagram helps show the complexity:

1 And it came to pass that the angel spake . . . saying: Look!
2 And I looked and beheld the Lamb of God,
3        that he was taken by the people;
4        yea, the Son . . . was judged of the world;
5 and I saw and bear record. 
6 And I . . . saw that he was lifted up . . . the world. 

Line 1 introduces the verse. Lines 2 through 5 are a chiasm. Line 6 is parallel to line 5 in that it tells in more detail what Nephi saw and bears record of. But line 6 is also parallel to lines 3 and 4. Specifically, it tells how the people condemned the Lamb of God.

[edit] Verse 32

  • "Judged" is ambiguous. It can mean only "to hear a case, such as a legal case, and to make a decision in regards to it." But it can also mean "to condemn."
  • "Saw and bear record": though "saw" is in the past tense, "bear" is in the present tense. Nephi saw the vision in the past, but he now bears record through the Book of Mormon. (The same phrase appears in verse 36.)


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 24

  • How is verse 24 related to the verses that precede it? For example, does it explain what the angel says in verse 23?

[edit] Verse 25

  • How do the fountain of living waters and the tree of life both symbolize the love of God?
  • Why do you think that Nephi doesn't mention the contrasting river of filthy water in this part of his account, though he seems to have seen it? (Compare 1 Ne 8:13 and 1 Ne 15:26-29.)
  • Do you think that Nephi saw, as Lehi did, his family in his vision? (Compare 1 Ne 8:14-18.) If so, why doesn't he mention them? If not, why not?

[edit] Verse 26

  • Why are the vision of Christ's birth (verses 17-23) and the vision of his life (verses 27-34) both preceded by the angel describing them to Nephi as "the condescension of God"? In other words, why does verse 26 repeat verse 16?

[edit] Verse 27

  • Is there any particular reason that the name "Lamb of God" is used in this context?

[edit] Verses 28-29

  • Notice that the chronological order of the elements of the vision doesn't correspond to the historical order. What does that tell us about visions? About historical order?
  • Why might there be a break in the vision at this point, with a kind of end to the vision, followed by a new beginning in verse 30?

[edit] Verse 30

  • When did the event of this verse occur?
  • Since it seems to interrupt the flow of the vision of the Lamb of God, what does this vision of angelic ministrations have to do with that vision and the vision of the twelve?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Why does the vision include this relatively lengthy description of the physical and psychological healings that Jesus did?
  • How were they important to his mission of salvation?

[edit] Verses 32-33

  • Why does Nephi see a vision of the crucifixion of Jesus, but not of his resurrection?

[edit] Verses 34-36

  • Verse 34 tells us that the building is the wisdom of the world. If we compare that to 1 Nephi 8:26-27 we see that the world and its wisdom is derision of those who are outside. What does that mean?
  • 1 Ne 12:18 says that the building is human vain imaginations and pride. How do those three versions of the building fit with one another?
  • How do we participate in the "wisdom" of the world?
  • Why does the angel describe the occupants of the building as the house of Israel (verse 35)?
  • Don't the events to which this corresponds occur after the loss of the ten tribes?
  • What does "pride of the world" mean here (verse 36)?
  • All three of these verses speak of those who fight against the apostles. What fight are they speaking of? Why is it a fight against the apostles rather than against God?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 11:12-23                      Next page: Chapter 12

1 Ne 12:16-20

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 12 > Verses 12:13-23
Previous page: Verses 12:1-12                      Next page: Chapter 13-14

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 13-23 to the rest of Chapter 12 is discussed at First Nephi 12.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

In these verses Nephi is seeing the future of his decendants. After the visit of Christ to the Americas the people live in righteousness for 3 generations. However, after that they begin to become wicked and are eventually destroyed.

[edit] Verse 18

"word of the justice" originally "sword of the justice" but mis-transcribed into the printers manuscript (see e.g. Journal of Book of Mormon Studies, 7:1 "Joseph Smith's Translation of the Book of Mormon: Evidence for Tight Control of the Text")


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 13

  • Why did Nephi write about "multitudes of the earth" when other Old Testament prophets talked about "a multitude of people" (Gen 48:4), "a multitude of nations" (Gen 48:19), the "multitude of Israel" (2 Sam 6:19), and "the multitude of all the nations" (Isa 29:7)?

[edit] Verse 14

  • How was it possible to distinguish between these two groups if they had just spent two centuries intermarrying with one another?

[edit] Verse 15

  • If Lamanites emerged around 194 AD (see 4 Ne 1:20), then why is Nephi led to believe in this vision that the split between his seed and his brother's seed occurred during the fourth or fifth generation from the time Christ appeared?

[edit] Verse 16

  • Is the angel trying to compare the river of filthy water to the era of Nephite apostasy that has started unfolding in Nephi's vision?

[edit] Verse 17

  • How do temptations "blindeth the eyes" and "hardeneth the hearts" of people?
  • How can people be "led" by temptations?
  • What are "broad roads"? How might a broad road lead someone to perish?

[edit] Verse 18

  • What does the "terrible gulf" divide? Is it the righteous from the wicked? If so, how is this brought about by divine "word of justice"?
  • What is the "word of justice" mentioned here?

[edit] Verse 19

  • Is Nephi making a distinction here between "my seed" and "the people of my seed"?
  • What does it mean that these people were able to "overpower" others? Does that mean they were destroyed or killed, or just subjugated in some way?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Who are "the people of the seed of my brethren"? Are these literal descendants of Laman and Lemuel, or other people associated with or possibly ruled by the literal descendants?
  • What does it mean that the people were "overcome"? Is this similar or different from being overpowered (cf. vs. 19).

[edit] Verse 21

  • How was this verse influenced by the talk of "rumours of wars" in the New Testament?

[edit] Verse 22

  • It their population, their faith, or both that will dwindle?

[edit] Verse 23

  • Why is it important that we know of how the loss of faith destroyed the people of Nephi and made them a "dark, and loathsome, and a filthy people"?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 12:1-12                      Next page: Chapter 13-14

1 Ne 15:1-5

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:1-11
Previous page: Chapter 15                      Next page: Verse 15:12-20

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:1-11 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 1-3

Nephi here contrasts his own approach to his father's teachings with his brother's. Both were confused about the meaning of what he said. Nephi's reaction was to ask God for not only an interpretation but to see what his father had seen. His brother's in contrast, "dispute" the meaning. In this context dispute might mean any number of things, but it could be a reference to a competing hermeneutic approach that prioritizes dialectic to revelation. Notice that Nephi's approach treats his father's teachings as more than a receptacle of latent meaning to be extracted. Rather, it treats it as a portal through which one comes to experience God's revelation for one's self.

[edit] Verse 2

  • "Dispute." This word is consistently used with a negative connotation in the Book of Mormon. See especially 3 Ne 11:28. (Note that in the New Testament the word is used sometimes without the same negative overtones. See for example Acts 19:8.)

[edit] Verse 3

  • "Hard to be understood." A couple of intriguing cross-references for this phrase are Ezek 3:6 and 2 Pet 3:16 in the KJV, and Mosiah 13:32 and Alma 33:20 in the Book of Mormon. Although these passages may be interesting from a theological, translational, or linguistic perspective, a more relevant passage in terms of what may have had an effect on Nephi is Isa 6:9ff where it seems Isaiah is told to preach things that "were hard for many people to understand," as Nephi puts it in 2 Ne 25:1.

[edit] Verses 4-5

Notice that Nephi here places himself within the cosmic story of history that he has just seen in vision. He is afflicted because of the "great wickedness of the children of men" and "the destruction of my people." Given that he seems to create an identity between himself and "his people" -- He is afflicted; they are destroyed -- it is possible that he also intends to identify his brothers with "the children of men" and their wickedness. Nesting himself and his brothers in the narrative of his father's teachings further emphasizes the approach taken in the previous three verses. There Nephi insisted on the recapitulation of the experience of the original prophet through personal revelation. Here he nests himself narratively rather than experientially within the story of the original revelation. The emphasis again is on the receiver of scripture not simply extracting meaning from it but experiencing it form themselves.

If Nephi is in fact silently comparing his brothers with "the wickedness of the children of men," inviting the reader to fill in the lacunae in his parallelism, it is possible that there is another incomplete parallelism that Nephi is inviting the reader to complete, namely the parallel between Nephi and Lehi as prophets and the parallel between Nephi and the reader as those that receive revelation. In other words, Nephi may be inviting the reader to seek revelation to understand his revelation and to see themselves as characters in the narrative that he is providing.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 1

  • Was Nephi looking for his father or his brethren?

[edit] Verse 2

  • If they were debating something that was said five chapters earlier, how much time had already passed?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Should modern-day readers find Lehi's words just as hard to understand?

[edit] Verse 4

  • Why is it that the New Testament, but not the Old Testament, talks about "being grieved for the hardness of their hearts" (see Mark 3:5)?

[edit] Verse 5

  • "My people." Why does Nephi use the term "my people" rather than "my descendants"? Is he more concerned here about the preservation of his seed, which would persist as a "remnant" or in the preservation of his kingdom?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Did Nephi go on without much hope?
  • Did Nephi go and speak to his brethren while they were still disputing, or was his being overcome in verse 5 something like fainting, and so when he got up again he went and sought them out after the fact? Why does Nephi add this detail about being overcome and receiving strength, does this contribute to the readers' understanding of the ensuing conversation?

[edit] Verse 7

  • Were they sincere in their belief of impossibility?

[edit] Verse 8

  • Why do various forms of the word "inquire" appear throughout the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price, but not even once in the Bible?

[edit] Verse 9

  • Had they sincerely tried to obtain an answer to prayer, or merely given up after their half-hearted efforts met with no response?

[edit] Verse 10

  • Does Nephi sound fatalistic in this verse, or does he have some faith that his brothers can really turn their life around?

[edit] Verse 11

  • Does asking the Lord in faith differ from asking the Lord believing that you shall receive? How might these be different? Why does Nephi mention each of these as part of the process of knowing the things of the Lord?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 15                      Next page: Verse 15:12-20

1 Ne 15:6-10

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:1-11
Previous page: Chapter 15                      Next page: Verse 15:12-20

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:1-11 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 1-3

Nephi here contrasts his own approach to his father's teachings with his brother's. Both were confused about the meaning of what he said. Nephi's reaction was to ask God for not only an interpretation but to see what his father had seen. His brother's in contrast, "dispute" the meaning. In this context dispute might mean any number of things, but it could be a reference to a competing hermeneutic approach that prioritizes dialectic to revelation. Notice that Nephi's approach treats his father's teachings as more than a receptacle of latent meaning to be extracted. Rather, it treats it as a portal through which one comes to experience God's revelation for one's self.

[edit] Verse 2

  • "Dispute." This word is consistently used with a negative connotation in the Book of Mormon. See especially 3 Ne 11:28. (Note that in the New Testament the word is used sometimes without the same negative overtones. See for example Acts 19:8.)

[edit] Verse 3

  • "Hard to be understood." A couple of intriguing cross-references for this phrase are Ezek 3:6 and 2 Pet 3:16 in the KJV, and Mosiah 13:32 and Alma 33:20 in the Book of Mormon. Although these passages may be interesting from a theological, translational, or linguistic perspective, a more relevant passage in terms of what may have had an effect on Nephi is Isa 6:9ff where it seems Isaiah is told to preach things that "were hard for many people to understand," as Nephi puts it in 2 Ne 25:1.

[edit] Verses 4-5

Notice that Nephi here places himself within the cosmic story of history that he has just seen in vision. He is afflicted because of the "great wickedness of the children of men" and "the destruction of my people." Given that he seems to create an identity between himself and "his people" -- He is afflicted; they are destroyed -- it is possible that he also intends to identify his brothers with "the children of men" and their wickedness. Nesting himself and his brothers in the narrative of his father's teachings further emphasizes the approach taken in the previous three verses. There Nephi insisted on the recapitulation of the experience of the original prophet through personal revelation. Here he nests himself narratively rather than experientially within the story of the original revelation. The emphasis again is on the receiver of scripture not simply extracting meaning from it but experiencing it form themselves.

If Nephi is in fact silently comparing his brothers with "the wickedness of the children of men," inviting the reader to fill in the lacunae in his parallelism, it is possible that there is another incomplete parallelism that Nephi is inviting the reader to complete, namely the parallel between Nephi and Lehi as prophets and the parallel between Nephi and the reader as those that receive revelation. In other words, Nephi may be inviting the reader to seek revelation to understand his revelation and to see themselves as characters in the narrative that he is providing.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 1

  • Was Nephi looking for his father or his brethren?

[edit] Verse 2

  • If they were debating something that was said five chapters earlier, how much time had already passed?

[edit] Verse 3

  • Should modern-day readers find Lehi's words just as hard to understand?

[edit] Verse 4

  • Why is it that the New Testament, but not the Old Testament, talks about "being grieved for the hardness of their hearts" (see Mark 3:5)?

[edit] Verse 5

  • "My people." Why does Nephi use the term "my people" rather than "my descendants"? Is he more concerned here about the preservation of his seed, which would persist as a "remnant" or in the preservation of his kingdom?

[edit] Verse 6

  • Did Nephi go on without much hope?
  • Did Nephi go and speak to his brethren while they were still disputing, or was his being overcome in verse 5 something like fainting, and so when he got up again he went and sought them out after the fact? Why does Nephi add this detail about being overcome and receiving strength, does this contribute to the readers' understanding of the ensuing conversation?

[edit] Verse 7

  • Were they sincere in their belief of impossibility?

[edit] Verse 8

  • Why do various forms of the word "inquire" appear throughout the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price, but not even once in the Bible?

[edit] Verse 9

  • Had they sincerely tried to obtain an answer to prayer, or merely given up after their half-hearted efforts met with no response?

[edit] Verse 10

  • Does Nephi sound fatalistic in this verse, or does he have some faith that his brothers can really turn their life around?

[edit] Verse 11

  • Does asking the Lord in faith differ from asking the Lord believing that you shall receive? How might these be different? Why does Nephi mention each of these as part of the process of knowing the things of the Lord?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Chapter 15                      Next page: Verse 15:12-20

1 Ne 15:11-15

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:12-20
Previous page: Verses 15:1-11                      Next page: Verse 15:21-36

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:12-20 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 12

  • Why is "olive tree" never hyphenated in the Bible and always hyphenated in the Book of Mormon?

[edit] Verse 13

  • After seeing a vision about the fate of his seed versus the fate of the seed of his brethren, how did Nephi so quickly conclude that "our seed" had a common fate?

[edit] Verse 14

  • Was Nephi confident that the indigenous peoples of the Americas would accept and embrace their identity as the descendants of Lehi?

[edit] Verse 15

  • Was Nephi lumping the descendants of Lehi in with indigenous peoples in the Western Hemisphere, or was he oblivious to the fact that the former would be severely outnumbered by the latter?

[edit] Verse 16

  • Will the members of the church in Latin America always remain a branch or will they at some point become the trunk?

[edit] Verse 17

  • Is Nephi suggesting that the scattering of indigenous peoples in the Western Hemisphere by Euro-Americans was finished in the 1820s?

[edit] Verse 18

  • Is Nephi saying that when American Mormons went across the ocean to preach the gospel to Non-Mormon Europeans during the 1830s and 1840s, that this was a case of Gentiles delivering the gospel to scattered Israel?

[edit] Verse 19

  • What did Nephi believe would be restored to the Jews before the Second Coming of Christ?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was Nephi comparing or equating the restoration of the Jews to/with the restoration of the house of Israel?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 12-19

"While some aspects... have already been fulfilled, the Book of Mormon teaches that this Abrahamic covenant will be fulfilled only in these latter days! It also emphasizes that we are among the covenant people of the Lord (see 2 Ne 30:2). Ours is the privilege to participate personally in the fulfillment of these promises. What an exciting time to live!"


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 15:1-11                      Next page: Verse 15:21-36

1 Ne 15:16-20

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:12-20
Previous page: Verses 15:1-11                      Next page: Verse 15:21-36

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:12-20 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 12

  • Why is "olive tree" never hyphenated in the Bible and always hyphenated in the Book of Mormon?

[edit] Verse 13

  • After seeing a vision about the fate of his seed versus the fate of the seed of his brethren, how did Nephi so quickly conclude that "our seed" had a common fate?

[edit] Verse 14

  • Was Nephi confident that the indigenous peoples of the Americas would accept and embrace their identity as the descendants of Lehi?

[edit] Verse 15

  • Was Nephi lumping the descendants of Lehi in with indigenous peoples in the Western Hemisphere, or was he oblivious to the fact that the former would be severely outnumbered by the latter?

[edit] Verse 16

  • Will the members of the church in Latin America always remain a branch or will they at some point become the trunk?

[edit] Verse 17

  • Is Nephi suggesting that the scattering of indigenous peoples in the Western Hemisphere by Euro-Americans was finished in the 1820s?

[edit] Verse 18

  • Is Nephi saying that when American Mormons went across the ocean to preach the gospel to Non-Mormon Europeans during the 1830s and 1840s, that this was a case of Gentiles delivering the gospel to scattered Israel?

[edit] Verse 19

  • What did Nephi believe would be restored to the Jews before the Second Coming of Christ?

[edit] Verse 20

  • Was Nephi comparing or equating the restoration of the Jews to/with the restoration of the house of Israel?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verses 12-19

"While some aspects... have already been fulfilled, the Book of Mormon teaches that this Abrahamic covenant will be fulfilled only in these latter days! It also emphasizes that we are among the covenant people of the Lord (see 2 Ne 30:2). Ours is the privilege to participate personally in the fulfillment of these promises. What an exciting time to live!"


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 15:1-11                      Next page: Verse 15:21-36

1 Ne 15:21-25

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:21-36
Previous page: Verses 15:12-20                      Next page: Verse 16:1-8

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:21-36 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

It is interesting that when Laman and Lemuel ask about the meaning of the tree, Nephi explained nothing more than to say that it is the Tree of Life (verses 21-22) before moving on to the next question. We know from 1 Ne 11:21-23 that Nephi knew more. There he explains to the angel in detail the meaning of the tree. The fact that he doesn't explain this to his brothers when asked about the tree may suggest that like Nephi, they already knew of its meaning. It seems likely that like Nephi, Laman and Lemuel were also taught in the learning of their father (1 Ne 1:1) and also knew of the manner of prophesying among the Jews (2 Ne 21:1).

It isn't immediately clear what "this thing" at the beginning of verse 31 refers to. The fact that Laman and Lemual are asking whether it refers to the torment of the body in the days of probation or after death suggests that "this thing" does not refer to God's justice spoken of in the previous verse. Instead it refers to the last thing they asked about--the river of water (verse 26) or in other words, as Nephi explains to them (verse 29), the awful hell that the angel told Nephi was prepared for the wicked (1 Ne 12:16). Nephi also makes it clear that they are talking about the river of dirty water, or hell, in verse 35.

Verses 32-36 are an explanation of what Nephi means by hell. We learn from these verse that Hell is the place prepared for those who cannot dwell in the kingdom of God.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 21

  • What was the antecedent to "this thing"?

[edit] Verse 22

  • Did they know more about the tree of life than is presently recorded in our Old Testament?

[edit] Verse 23

  • Why were Laman and Lemuel so willing to believe that Lehi actually saw a vision?

[edit] Verse 24

  • What did it mean to "hold fast" to the scriptures for a people who had no concept of, or experience with, personal ownership of scriptures?

[edit] Verse 25

  • If faculties are an aspect of the soul (see Jacob 3:11), then what was the difference between energies and faculties of the soul?

[edit] Verse 26

  • Did they have good reason to be perplexed about what this river represented?

[edit] Verse 27

  • What made Nephi immune from this swallowing up of the mind?

[edit] Verse 28

  • Why was there no bridge to allow the penitent to cross the gulf and approach the tree?

[edit] Verse 29

  • If the gulf represented hell, then why were the wicked outside, rather than inside, the gulf?

[edit] Verse 30

  • If God is being just when separates the wicked from the righteous in the afterlife, then is he being unjust when he allows these two groups to live together during mortality?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Why did Laman and Lemuel feel like a gulf separated them from others during their mortal probation?

[edit] Verse 32

  • Is Nephi saying that the wicked will be tormented while in the flesh?
  • If so, who is the tormentor that inflicts this upon the bodies of the wicked?

[edit] Verse 33

  • Is Nephi connecting these points with his earlier statements and saying that Jews and Lamanites who procrastinate their repentance, and ultimately die in their sins, will at that point be cast out of the covenant?

[edit] Verse 34

  • Is this evidence that the war in heaven did not take place in the kingdom of God?

[edit] Verse 35

  • Has the devil prepared any place for eternal human habitation besides Outer Darkness?

[edit] Verse 36

  • Who is the actor in this verse that rejects the wicked?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. → What Meaneth the Rod of Iron? - Maxwell Institute


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 15:12-20                      Next page: Verse 16:1-8

1 Ne 15:26-30

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:21-36
Previous page: Verses 15:12-20                      Next page: Verse 16:1-8

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:21-36 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

This heading is for more detailed discussions of all or part of a passage. Discussion may include the meaning of a particular word, how a doctrinal point is developed throughout the passage, insights to be developed in the future, and other items. Contributions may range from polished paragraphs down to a single bullet point. The focus, however, should always be on understanding the scriptural text consistent with LDS doctrine. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

It is interesting that when Laman and Lemuel ask about the meaning of the tree, Nephi explained nothing more than to say that it is the Tree of Life (verses 21-22) before moving on to the next question. We know from 1 Ne 11:21-23 that Nephi knew more. There he explains to the angel in detail the meaning of the tree. The fact that he doesn't explain this to his brothers when asked about the tree may suggest that like Nephi, they already knew of its meaning. It seems likely that like Nephi, Laman and Lemuel were also taught in the learning of their father (1 Ne 1:1) and also knew of the manner of prophesying among the Jews (2 Ne 21:1).

It isn't immediately clear what "this thing" at the beginning of verse 31 refers to. The fact that Laman and Lemual are asking whether it refers to the torment of the body in the days of probation or after death suggests that "this thing" does not refer to God's justice spoken of in the previous verse. Instead it refers to the last thing they asked about--the river of water (verse 26) or in other words, as Nephi explains to them (verse 29), the awful hell that the angel told Nephi was prepared for the wicked (1 Ne 12:16). Nephi also makes it clear that they are talking about the river of dirty water, or hell, in verse 35.

Verses 32-36 are an explanation of what Nephi means by hell. We learn from these verse that Hell is the place prepared for those who cannot dwell in the kingdom of God.


[edit] Points to ponder

This heading is for prompts that suggest ways in which all or part of this passage can influence a person's life. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →


[edit] I have a question

This heading is for unanswered questions and is an important part of the continual effort to improve this wiki. Please do not be shy, as even a basic or "stupid" question can identify things that need to be improved on this page. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

[edit] Verse 21

  • What was the antecedent to "this thing"?

[edit] Verse 22

  • Did they know more about the tree of life than is presently recorded in our Old Testament?

[edit] Verse 23

  • Why were Laman and Lemuel so willing to believe that Lehi actually saw a vision?

[edit] Verse 24

  • What did it mean to "hold fast" to the scriptures for a people who had no concept of, or experience with, personal ownership of scriptures?

[edit] Verse 25

  • If faculties are an aspect of the soul (see Jacob 3:11), then what was the difference between energies and faculties of the soul?

[edit] Verse 26

  • Did they have good reason to be perplexed about what this river represented?

[edit] Verse 27

  • What made Nephi immune from this swallowing up of the mind?

[edit] Verse 28

  • Why was there no bridge to allow the penitent to cross the gulf and approach the tree?

[edit] Verse 29

  • If the gulf represented hell, then why were the wicked outside, rather than inside, the gulf?

[edit] Verse 30

  • If God is being just when separates the wicked from the righteous in the afterlife, then is he being unjust when he allows these two groups to live together during mortality?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Why did Laman and Lemuel feel like a gulf separated them from others during their mortal probation?

[edit] Verse 32

  • Is Nephi saying that the wicked will be tormented while in the flesh?
  • If so, who is the tormentor that inflicts this upon the bodies of the wicked?

[edit] Verse 33

  • Is Nephi connecting these points with his earlier statements and saying that Jews and Lamanites who procrastinate their repentance, and ultimately die in their sins, will at that point be cast out of the covenant?

[edit] Verse 34

  • Is this evidence that the war in heaven did not take place in the kingdom of God?

[edit] Verse 35

  • Has the devil prepared any place for eternal human habitation besides Outer Darkness?

[edit] Verse 36

  • Who is the actor in this verse that rejects the wicked?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. → What Meaneth the Rod of Iron? - Maxwell Institute


[edit] Notes

Footnotes are not required but are encouraged for factual assertions that average readers cannot easily evaluate for themselves, such as the date of King Solomon’s death or the nuanced definition of a Greek word. In contrast, insights rarely benefit from footnoting, and the focus of this page should always remain on the scriptures themselves rather than what someone has said about them. Links are actively encouraged on all sections of this page, and links to authoritative sources are preferable to footnotes.




Previous page: Verses 15:12-20                      Next page: Verse 16:1-8

1 Ne 15:31-36

The Book of Mormon > First Nephi > Chapters 10-15 > Chapter 15 > Verses 15:21-36
Previous page: Verses 15:12-20                      Next page: Verse 16:1-8

This page would ideally always be under construction. You are invited to contribute.


[edit] Summary

This heading should be brief and may include an outline of the passage. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. →

The relationship of Verses 15:21-36 to the rest of Chapter 15 is discussed at First Nephi 15.


[edit] Discussion

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It is interesting that when Laman and Lemuel ask about the meaning of the tree, Nephi explained nothing more than to say that it is the Tree of Life (verses 21-22) before moving on to the next question. We know from 1 Ne 11:21-23 that Nephi knew more. There he explains to the angel in detail the meaning of the tree. The fact that he doesn't explain this to his brothers when asked about the tree may suggest that like Nephi, they already knew of its meaning. It seems likely that like Nephi, Laman and Lemuel were also taught in the learning of their father (1 Ne 1:1) and also knew of the manner of prophesying among the Jews (2 Ne 21:1).

It isn't immediately clear what "this thing" at the beginning of verse 31 refers to. The fact that Laman and Lemual are asking whether it refers to the torment of the body in the days of probation or after death suggests that "this thing" does not refer to God's justice spoken of in the previous verse. Instead it refers to the last thing they asked about--the river of water (verse 26) or in other words, as Nephi explains to them (verse 29), the awful hell that the angel told Nephi was prepared for the wicked (1 Ne 12:16). Nephi also makes it clear that they are talking about the river of dirty water, or hell, in verse 35.

Verses 32-36 are an explanation of what Nephi means by hell. We learn from these verse that Hell is the place prepared for those who cannot dwell in the kingdom of God.


[edit] Points to ponder

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[edit] I have a question

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[edit] Verse 21

  • What was the antecedent to "this thing"?

[edit] Verse 22

  • Did they know more about the tree of life than is presently recorded in our Old Testament?

[edit] Verse 23

  • Why were Laman and Lemuel so willing to believe that Lehi actually saw a vision?

[edit] Verse 24

  • What did it mean to "hold fast" to the scriptures for a people who had no concept of, or experience with, personal ownership of scriptures?

[edit] Verse 25

  • If faculties are an aspect of the soul (see Jacob 3:11), then what was the difference between energies and faculties of the soul?

[edit] Verse 26

  • Did they have good reason to be perplexed about what this river represented?

[edit] Verse 27

  • What made Nephi immune from this swallowing up of the mind?

[edit] Verse 28

  • Why was there no bridge to allow the penitent to cross the gulf and approach the tree?

[edit] Verse 29

  • If the gulf represented hell, then why were the wicked outside, rather than inside, the gulf?

[edit] Verse 30

  • If God is being just when separates the wicked from the righteous in the afterlife, then is he being unjust when he allows these two groups to live together during mortality?

[edit] Verse 31

  • Why did Laman and Lemuel feel like a gulf separated them from others during their mortal probation?

[edit] Verse 32

  • Is Nephi saying that the wicked will be tormented while in the flesh?
  • If so, who is the tormentor that inflicts this upon the bodies of the wicked?

[edit] Verse 33

  • Is Nephi connecting these points with his earlier statements and saying that Jews and Lamanites who procrastinate their repentance, and ultimately die in their sins, will at that point be cast out of the covenant?

[edit] Verse 34

  • Is this evidence that the war in heaven did not take place in the kingdom of God?

[edit] Verse 35

  • Has the devil prepared any place for eternal human habitation besides Outer Darkness?

[edit] Verse 36

  • Who is the actor in this verse that rejects the wicked?


[edit] Resources

This heading is for listing links and print resources, including those cited in the notes. A short comment about the particular strengths of a resource can be helpful. Click the link above and to the right to edit or add content to this heading. → What Meaneth the Rod of Iron? - Maxwell Institute


[edit] Notes

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