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Showing posts from September, 2014

Who Was Nephi's Audience?

Who wrote? Nephi wrote 1 and 2 Nephi as an older adult after already reaching the Promised Land.

Why? He was writing his testimony and how the Lord has blessed him in his life. His story was not about Lehi, Jerusalem history, or even his brothers. It was his life and what he had been inspired to teach. He was instructing his audience using examples from his own life to teach the gospel and the "tender mercies of the Lord". At least that is in 1 Nephi. It is the Book of Mormon's exodus story. In fact, writers from BYU have compared Lehi to Moses (and Jacob) Nephi even uses Moses as an example. 1 Nephi is the Exodus of the Book of Mormon.

What happened? Lehi was called to preach repentence to the Jews. He did so. Why did Nephi include this? This was the beginning. This is when things changed. Lehi's life and possibly his family was threatened. We know Jeremiah was thrown in prison and tortured at this time. Lehi kept preaching.

Lehi was called to leave Jerusalem. That …

Young Nephi

Nephi begins his story with the call of his father, Lehi. That is when things changed for his family.

A friend on Facebook asked the question, "How old was Nephi when the Book of Nephi begins?" I am very glad she asked that because it made me think. Of course, there is no exact answer. We just know Nephi was young and large for his age. Someone later posted comparisons to Joseph Smith and hypothesized that Nephi was around 14-15 years old. The mid-teen years are the years that many heroes in the scriptures are called. In studying other great Biblical leaders, the mid-teen range makes the most sense.

What happened at the beginning of The Book of Nephi?  Nephi witnessed his father coming home exhausted after his father saw God. His father began to preach repentance to the people of Jerusalem, warning them of the upcoming destruction. His father was receiving death threats and was rejected by the people. Nephi also witnessed his older brothers reject their father. Nephi said hi…

False Prophets

Lehi prophesied at the same time as Jeremiah. We don't know if they knew each other or who eaxctly Lehi preached to and in what area. Jeremiah was a Levite from Anathoth and preached to Kings. Lehi was of Ephraim, a wealthy man from Jerusalem.  The lands of Ephraim were very close to Jerusalem so at one time Lehi's family settled in that city. It was forgotten because Lehi didn't know until his family was in the wilderness that he was a descendant of Ephraim. Because he belonged to the Kingdom of Judah, he considered himself a Jew. Lehi was wealthy and well educated knowing reformed Egyptian.

Jeremiah was the most famous prophet at the time but there were others, some real some false. Judah was filled with so called prophets who preached that all was well in Judah. They were nationalistic and led people astray. They tolerated idolatry and "secret places" in Judah. They preached about Baal and told the people they had dreams about Baal. Sure they were priests of …

Lehi the Prophet

Nephi had just a regular life in Jerusalem, 600 BC. He was a young man who was still learning and was taught Egyptian and Hebrew. Egypt was a major power at the time and Nephi needed to learn the knowledge he needed to be successful. The Jews hoped the Egyptians would support them against the growing power of Babylon. It is similar to how many Americans want their children to learn Chinese for they feel like China is the future for America's success. Just like the Jews of old, Americans are probably wrong in that assessment. Anyways, Nephi learning Egyptian ended up being useful for he was able to write more on the plates in a smaller amount of space. Now, that Nephi was older, it was all about Babylon! Jerusalem was under their thumb but believed that by paying tribute they would be saved. They now had a new young king, Zedekiah, a puppet of the Babylonian king.

Nephi, had a normal life in Jerusalem, perhaps his family was mocked for being what they would call "fundies"…

Born of Goodly Parents

Lesson 1- 1 Nephi 1 " I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents, therefore I was taught somewhat in all the learning of my father; and having seen many afflictions in the course of my days, nevertheless, having been highly favored of the Lord in all my days; yea, having had a great knowledge of the goodness and the mysteries of God, therefore I make a record of my proceedings in my days."
      This first verse perfectly sums up Nephi's life and introduces the main idea of the record that he is about to write. Nephi lived in Jerusalem around the time of King Zedekiah, the last King of Judah, right around 600 B.C. It was a time of chaos and a time when Judah was weak and stumbling along due to the lack of faith of its people. Jeremiah was a major prophet at the time preaching to the stubborn young King. The Jewish leadership were looking to other kings rather than to God for help. The people of Judah were getting warned by the prophets to repent or else they would los…

Book of Mormon Study Guide

I am working on the Book of Mormon Study Guide for Home-Study Seminary Students.  The book is an easy way to keep up with your study and makes you really think about what you are reading. Today I finished reading the Book of Mormon and will start it back over. I will blog about what I have studied. You are welcome to comment. I will also apply what I have studied to today.