Summary: Jacob saw his Redeemer—The law of Moses typifies Christ and proves he shall come. Between 559 and 545 B.C.
This is a short chapter but it has some really good things in it.
In verses 2-8, Nephi introduces the rest of his writings about Isaiah. He makes some important points:
Vs. 2-3: Nephi bears testimony of the reality of the Redeemer, and emphasizes the system of having three witnesses confirm a truth. The common scripture we hear about this is in Corinthians ("In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established) was written after Nephi's time.
Nephi also gives more reasons about why he quotes Isaiah. This table is found in the sunday school lesson on the subject, and I liked it (my mind works really well with tables) so I borrowed it!
WHY NEPHI QUOTED ISAIAH
To “more fully persuade them to believe in the Lord”
To provide another witness of Jesus Christ
To help us (his readers) rejoice
To reveal God’s judgments
One last thought; let's take a look at verse four:
4 Behold, my soul delighteth in aproving unto my people the truth of the bcoming of Christ; for, for this end hath the claw of Moses been given; and all things which have been given of God from the beginning of the world, unto man, are the dtypifying of him.
Nephi is teaching that the law of Moses was given by God to typify Christ. The term "type" has an interesting meaning--it indicates that an object or event carries spiritual significance as well as a literal meaning.
The law of Moses was profoundly symbolic.
We learn in Mosiah ch. 13 that this Law--a law of performances and ordinances--was given to help the people remember God and their duty toward him. BUT, it also says that because of the hardness of their hearts, the people did not understand the law. They did not understand that man can only be saved through the redemption of God; all they focused on was following the rules.
Remember the Anti-Nephi-Lehis? They are some of my favorite people in the Book of Mormon. Well, THEY understood. Take a look at Alma Ch. 25, vs. 15-16. They point out that the Anti-Nephi-Lehis followed the Law, while looking forward to the coming of Christ and understanding that the Law is a type of His coming. "Now they did not suppose that salvation came by the law of Moses, but the law of Moses did serve to strengthen their faith in Christ"--which helped them retain their hope.
So, after all that, this really makes me think about my reasons for keeping the commandments. We all know about the Saducees and the Pharisees and all the people in the New Testament who followed the rules but still didn't get it. Why do I follow the "rules"? Do I do it because I really have a testimony of the principle, or because I know I'm supposed to, or because I've always done it and that is just the way it is done?
It really makes me think. What about you? What "rules" have you gained a testimony of recently? How do you keep remembering what it is all about?