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Summary: Nephi makes plates of ore and records the history of his people—The God of Israel shall come six hundred years from the time Lehi left Jerusalem—Nephi tells of His sufferings and crucifixion—The Jews shall be despised and scattered until the latter days, when they will return unto the Lord. Between 588 and 570 B.C
What an amazing chapter. There could be so much to discuss in this chapter! ....and I am feeling far from a scriptorian at the moment. :) I will give it my best shot. I am realizing that there could be hours of research to go along with this chapter, but here we go!
Verses 1-5 explain how Nephi was commanded to make a second set of plates and he tells of what kinds of records he is keeping on each set of plates....all for a "wise purpose" in the Lord. It is said that, again, the reason Nephi was commanded to make another set of plates is because of the experience that Joseph Smith had with losing the first 116 pages he had translated out of the book of Lehi. I am trying to find that history online so I can link you to it...
Then starting in verse 8 he tells of the prophesies of the Messiah. That he should come to the earth 600 years after the time his father left Jerusalem. Wow, what a prophecy. I wondered if it was incredible to Nephi that it would still be six-hundred years.
He continues through verse 11 telling of how Christ will be crucified. He will allow it and suffer it "because of his loving kindness and his long-suffering towards the children of men." And the earth will mourn because their God suffers. And those that turned their hearts aside and crucified the Lord "shall wander in the flesh, and perish, and become a hiss and a byword, and be hated among all nations.
What I thought was neat about his recordings is that he also mentions the prophets of the Bible: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Zenock, and Zenos. Sometimes I think about investigators that are reading through the Book of Mormon for the first time. It must be neat to see it connect with familiar biblical prophets.
Finally in verse 15 Nephi explains that when the people finally turn their hearts no more, then will the Lord remember the covenants made with their fathers.
Verse 18: Why does Nephi write these things? So that his people would remember the Lord, their Redeemer.
As the chapter comes to a close, Nephi tells how he teaches his brethren. He even teaches from the books of Moses and Isaiah...and he did "liken all scriptures unto us, that it might be for our profit and learning. "
What a good example Nephi is to us. He tells of how he studies the writings of the ancient prophets - including Moses, to Isaiah who only lived just 100-200 years before him. Now isn't that a neat perspective? Maybe we could put it this way - just for fun. Isaiah was to Nephi as Joseph Smith is to us. Joseph Smith was born about 200 years ago and Isaiah was living about 100-200 years before Nephi. So you can see how Nephi looked up to these prophets...and how Isaiah really was more of a "modern-day prophet" to him. Interesting, isn't it?
But finally, I love how he reminds us to liken all the scriptures to ourselves. I appreciate how so many blog posts have done this, and it reminds me that I need to be better at likening the scriptures to my own life. I truly believe that when we do this, we find answers, hope, peace, comfort, and guidance in any aspect of our lives. That's why reading the scriptures DAILY is so very important. We need to fill our buckets! I'm so grateful for this opportunity!