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Monday, October 19, 2009

3 Nephi Ch. 3

Read it HERE.

Summary: Giddianhi, the Gadianton leader, demands that Lachoneus and the Nephites surrender themselves and their lands—Lachoneus appoints Gidgiddoni as chief captain of the armies—The Nephites assemble in Zarahemla and Bountiful to defend themselves. Between A.D. 16 and 17

This is a pretty important chapter: in it we learn that the leader of the Gadianton Robbers intends to destroy the Nephites, whether by murdering them or forcing them to join his ranks. We also learn that Lachoneus, the Chief Judge, is a righteous man and does everything he can to help the Nephites fortify themselves against the attack.

I was struck by the similarities between the world these righteous Nephites were living in and the world we are living in now. The are a lot of parallels between what is happening in this chapter to what is and will be happening in the "last days" before Christ comes again. Here is some of what I've found (feel free to add thoughts of your own).

~ Giddianhi wants the people of the Nephites, their cities, their lands, and their posessions. The choice is to give all this up or die (vs. 6,7). Satan, I think, works in a similar manner. He cannot have posession of our souls until we give ourselves to him--and this can happen piece by piece by choosing him over God.

~ The only crime the Nephites committed against the Gadianto Robbers was that they "had wronged themselves by dissenting away unto those wicked and abominable robbers" (vs. 11). I pray that I always have the strenth to simliary "wrong" the adversary.

~ Lachoneus replies to the demands of Giddianhi by "send[ing] a proclamation among all the people, that they should gather together their women, and their children, their flocks and their herds, and all their substance, save it were their land, unto one place." We also have a proclamation from our prophets. Isn't the purpose the same? To gather our families together unto one "place" as a protection against adversity?

~ The Nephites fortified themselves (vs. 14). We have to make the choice every day to add to our spiritual fortifications or to take away from it. If we are not adding, we are weakening the structures we need to protect our families.

~ Then, they repented! They repented "in their might". (vs. 15,16)

~ Lachoneus appoints captains to be stationed among the people and among the fortifications to warn the people of an attack(vs. 17,18). We have modern day "captains"--our Church is set up in the same way. We have bishops, stake presidents, area leaders, and prophets to guide us and help us know how to overcome our enemy. They, like these Nephite captains, are only imperfect men, but they still have the ability to be inspired on our behalf.

~ The Nephites want to go to where the Gadianton Robbers are in order to destroy them, but Lachoneus tells them they must prepare together in their strongholds and wait (vs. 21). Similarly, we should not fight against the adversary on his terms, and we cannot do it alone.

And here are the final verses. We can see how the Nephites placed every effort in preparation and defense, but especially in repentance and faith.

25 And they did fortify themselves against their enemies; and they did dwell in one land, and in one body, and they did fear the words which had been spoken by Lachoneus, insomuch that they did repent of all their sins; and they did put up their prayers unto the Lord their God, that he would deliver them in the time that their enemies should come down against them to battle.

26 And they were exceedingly sorrowful because of their enemies. And Gidgiddoni did cause that they should make weapons of war of every kind, and they should be strong with armor, and with shields, and with bucklers, after the manner of his instruction.

What do you think? My synopsis is a bit clumsy, but I am still learning. Did anything impress you about this chapter?


1 comment:

Greg said...

Hi Elise. Thank you for this post. I am always amazed when I reread a certain section of scripture and learn new things. I thought you might be interested in reading my notes about the Gadianton Robbers. Best wishes - very nice blog.