16 MAR 15
In 4 Nephi the people were united and there was no contention in the land (4 Nephi 1:15). This was the second time a Zion society had been established on the Earth and the student manual refers to it as the Nephite Zion (golden Nephite era).This lasted for two hundred years before pride and distinctions arose again in the 201st year (4 Nephi 1:24). In short span of time there came to be many churches “which professed to know the Christ, and yet they did deny the more parts of the gospel” (4 Nephi 1:27).
While we are not in a Zion society, I would say for the most part the church is currently righteous. What are some things we can do to avoid falling into the pits of pride and distinctions?
To answer my own question I would say we need to constantly taking a hard look at ourselves and honestly evaluate if our spirit and actions are in keeping with the Lord. If we see others fall, we shouldn’t judge but be supportive in helping them back up. If we fall, we should repent quickly and seek help if we need it.
17 MAR 15
Mormon called by prophet at a young age. (Mormon 1:2)
I’ve worked with eleven year old scouts. Mormon must have been quite an unusual boy to be considered sober by a prophet. Most boys that age are pretty silly to me.
Three Nephites taken from earth. Miracles cease for a time. (Mormon 1:13)
This makes me sad to think of the great miracles these people denied themselves by having the Three Nephites go. Even with being pretty much invincible there is a time to go when no one is listening anymore and just try to toss you in lion’s dens and light you on fire. I guess that get’s old after a while.
Sorceries, witchcrafts and magics. (Mormon 1:19)
I’ve always wondered if this part referred to Aztec blood sacrifice like rituals or if people were running around yelling magic missile at each other and it actually worked. Somehow I don’t think they were as nice as today’s fictional Gandalf or Harry Potter.
18 MAR 15
Leader of the Army at sixteen. (Mormon 2:2)
It later says he was leading roughly 42,000 soldiers into battle. I’m assuming that’s not including camp followers and others that would have been considered part of the support staff. Today that would make him roughly equivalent to a Lieutenant General in charge of an Army Corps.
Here are some numbers for perspective:
A company typically has 62 to 190 soldiers, and a battalion is a combat unit of 300 to 1,000 soldiers. Three to five battalions, approximately 3,000 to 5,000 soldiers, comprise a brigade. The size of a division varies from about 10,000 to 15,000 soldiers, and most divisions have three or more brigades of roughly equal size. A corps, which consists of two or more divisions and support troops, normally has from 20,000 to 45,000 soldiers. (Number from usmilitary.about.com)
Mormon stops being commander. (Mormon 3:11-12)
So Mormon is helped by the Lord and miraculously defeats the Lamanites in three major battles. Then the Nephites still don’t repent! They are just blind in missing these miracles. It gets to the point that Mormon has to refuse leading them. This of course can’t be good for them at all.
Wicked punished by wicked. (Mormon 4:5)
This is an interesting concept that only gets brought up on a few occasions in the scriptures. I always hear that in many ways the Lamanites were less wicked as they hadn’t had all the blessing the Nephites did before their fall.
Lamanites sacrifice women and children to idol gods. (Mormon 4:14)
Now here is the actual human sacrifice I was wondering about earlier. I remember a lot of it occurred at this point in the scriptures. How twisted is Satan, that he would pervert the true and everlasting sacrifice of Christ into a spectacle of pain and torture.
19 MAR 15
In Mormon 5:12-14 we are told how the records Mormon is writing will be “hid up unto the Lord” and later revealed. We are also told that the records will be revealed and that they will go forth to convince the unbelieving that “Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God”. I like that simply said primary concept from the Book of Mormon. It frustrates me when people claim we are not Christians yet Christ is the center of our religion and it is said so often through the scriptures. If only they would take the time to really listen, then maybe they would come to see how Christ is at the center of all that we do. Christ’s name is on the cover of our scriptures, in the Church’s name and in our prayers. He is truly in the center of our lives. It’s almost as if some people are being intentionally obtuse.
20 MAR 15
The hill and land Cumorah (Mormon 6:2-6)
Where was the hill Cumorah? The church doesn’t have an official stance on that one. According to some scholars it could have been in Mexico and not New York and that the New York Hill Cumorah is another location by the same name. It’s not essential to my salvation but it is an interesting topic. Here are a few pages with discussions on this topic:
Mormon laments the fall of the Nephites. (Mormon 6:17-19)
I can really feel his pain expressed in this passage. I feel sad for his having to watch the fall of his people.
Mormon calls the Lamanites to repent and be baptized. (Mormon 7)
This is the true love of Christ. He see’s his people utterly destroyed by the Lamanites but he still has the love to call them to repent and be baptized. This tells us some about his character.
Coming forth of Book of Mormon (Mormon 8:26-32)
I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and that he translated the Book of Mormon through the power of God.
God is the same yesterday, today and forever (Mormon 9:8-9)
God doesn’t change. Sure people change and how he deals with them is a little different but the principles behind it all are the same.
Who is Paul Darr?
Paul Darr has lived in California, Oregon, Colorado, and currently lives in San Antonio, Texas. Paul is also an Army Veteran, who has deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. On the political spectrum Paul is a Libertarian that advocates fiscal responsibility and social tolerance. Paul is currently employed as a Systems Administrator and is a father of a handsome boy and beautiful daughter. In his free time Paul enjoys reading, using and modifying open source software, gaming, and several other geeky pursuits.