Three Nephite Disciples
We left off in the last episode with Mormon stating in 3 Nephi 26:21 “And they who were baptized in the name of Jesus were called the church of Christ.”
As we begin in 3 Nephi 27:1-2, the 12 Disciples were gathered together in prayer and fasting – when Jesus appeared to them for the third time and asked them “What will ye that I shall give unto you?”
3 Nephi 27:1 ^The words “preaching the things” are in Acts 8:12 and “were gathered together and were” are in Luke 8:4.
3 Nephi 27:2 The phrase “stood in the midst of them, and” is in Luke 24:36.
3 Nephi 27:3 “And they said unto him: Lord, we will that thou wouldst tell us the name whereby we shall call this church; for there are disputations among the people concerning this matter.” ^The words “And they said unto him” are in Luke 19:25 and “whereby we” are in Acts 4:12. This verse suggests that some Nephites proposed to name the church something other than the “church of Christ”.
3 Nephi 27:4 “And the Lord said unto them: Verily, verily, I say unto you, why is it that the people should murmur and dispute because of this thing?”
3 Nephi 27:5 “Have they not read the scriptures, which say ye must take upon you the name of Christ, which is my name? For by this name shall ye be called at the last day;” In the 1830 edition page 506 it read “which is in my name?” In later editions the word “in” was deleted.
3 Nephi 27:6 “And whoso taketh upon him my name, and endureth to the end, the same shall be saved at the last day.” The phrase “the same shall be saved” is in Mark 13:13.
3 Nephi 27:7 “Therefore, whatsoever ye shall do, ye shall do it in my name; therefore ye shall call the church in my name; and ye shall call upon the Father in my name that he will bless the church for my sake.”
3 Nephi 27:8 “And how be it my church save it be called in my name? For if a church be called in Moses’ name then it be Moses’ church; or if it be called in the name of a man then it be the church of a man; but if it be called in my name then it is my church, if it so be that they are built upon my gospel.” In other words, merely naming a church after Christ does not make it the true Church. In a, 1830 revelation to Joseph Smith, God called the name of His church the “Church of Christ” as it was called here in 3 Nephi. Then in 1834 at a conference of the Church, it was renamed “The Church of the Latter Day Saints” (see History of the Church 2:62-63). Then in 1838 Joseph Smith, received another revelation where God changed His mind and gave the eventual name for the church in the last days to be called “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints” (see D&C 115:4). Three name changes in 8 years. (We have 2 episodes talking about these church name changes. Links are in the description below. Name of the Church – Part 1 and Name of the Church – Part2) Jesus is saying there are many churches that have His name in its title. But the true church must be built upon His gospel.
3 Nephi 27:9 “Verily I say unto you, that ye are built upon my gospel; therefore ye shall call whatsoever things ye do call, in my name; therefore, if ye call upon the Father, for the church, if it be in my name the Father will hear you;” ^The words “I say unto you, that ye” are in Matthew 5:39.
3 Nephi 27:10 “And if it so be that the church is built upon my gospel then will the Father show forth his own works in it.” The words “my gospel” are in 2 Timothy 2:8.
3 Nephi 27:11 “But if it be not built upon my gospel, and is built upon the works of men, or upon the works of devil, verily I say unto you they have joy in their works for a season, and by and by the end cometh, and they are hewn down and cast into the fire, from whence there is no return.” The phrase “the works of the devil” is from 1 John 3:8 and “hewn down and cast into the fire” is from Matthew 3:10.
3 Nephi 27:12 “For their works do follow them, for it is because of their works that they are hewn down; therefore remember the things that I have told you.” The phrase “their works do follow them” is in Revelation 14:13.
3 Nephi 27:13 Next, Jesus gives a summary of what His gospel is. “Behold I have given unto you my gospel, and this is the gospel which I have given unto you – that I came into the world to do the will of my Father, because my Father sent me.” ^The words “the gospel which I” are in 1 Corinthians 15:1.
3 Nephi 27:14 “And my Father sent me that I might be lifted up upon the cross; and after that I had been lifted up upon the cross, that I might draw all men unto me, that as I have been lifted up by men even so should men be lifted up by the Father, to stand before me, to be judged of their works, whether they be good or whether they be evil –“ The phrase “upon the cross” is in John 19:31 and “draw all men unto me” is from John 12:32.
3 Nephi 27:15 “And for this cause have I been lifted up; therefore, according to the power of the Father I will draw all men unto me, that they may be judged according to their works.” The words “according to their works” are in Revelation 20:13.
3 Nephi 27:16 Then speaking of the blessings of membership in His Church, Jesus says, “And it shall come to pass, that whoso repenteth and is baptized in my name shall be filled; and if he endureth to the end, behold, him will I hold guiltless before my Father at that day when I shall stand to judge the world.” ^The phrase “endureth to the end” is in Matthew 10:22.
3 Nephi 27:17 But, for those who do not remain faithful, “And he that endureth not unto the end, the same is he that is also hewn down and cast into the fire, from whence they can no more return because of the justice of the Father.” ^The words “the same is he that” are in Matthew 13:30. What does it mean to endure to the end? Does it mean just to hang on? Does it require our best? Or, should it mean to always maintain our belief and trust in the work of Christ on our behalf?
3 Nephi 27:18 “And this is the word which he hath given unto the children of men. And for this cause he fulfilleth the words which he hath given, and he lieth not, but fulfilleth all his words.” ^The phrase “And this is the word which” is in 1 Peter 1:25 and “And for this cause he” is in Hebrews 9:15.
3 Nephi 27:19 Speaking of the LDS celestial glory, “And no unclean thing can enter into his kingdom; therefore nothing entereth into his rest save it be those who have washed their garments in my blood, because of their faith, and the repentance of all their sins, and their faithfulness unto the end.” Wow, “repentance of ALL their sins”! What if there are a few sins or even just one sin not repented of? This is what He means when He tells them to endure to the end.
3 Nephi 27:20 “Now this is the commandment: Repent, all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me and be baptized in my name, that ye may be sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand spotless before me at the last day.” Notice how important baptism is to Jesus on this side of the world. The words “this is the commandment” are in 2 John 1:6 and “sanctified by the” are in Romans 15:16.
3 Nephi 27:21 “Verily, verily, I say unto you, this is my gospel; and ye know the things that ye must do in my church; for the works which ye have seen me do that shall ye also do; for that which ye have seen me do even that shall ye do.” In other words, follow His example.
3 Nephi 27:22 “Therefore, if ye do these things blessed are ye, for ye shall be lifted up at the last day.” They will be exalted in the celestial kingdom. The words “if ye do these things” are in 2 Peter 1:10 and “up at the last day” are in John 6:40.
3 Nephi 27:23-24 Jesus tells the Disciples to write everything they have seen and heard that are not forbidden. And continue keeping records of this people, including future events.
3 Nephi 27:23 The phrase “have seen and heard” is in Luke 7:22.
3 Nephi 27:25 “For behold, out of the books which have been written, and which shall be written, shall this people be judged, for by them shall their works be known unto men.”
3 Nephi 27:26 Jesus explains there are records kept in heaven, which will also be used in the judgment.
3 Nephi 27:27 Then Jesus tells the Disciples that they will judge the people of Nephi. But Moroni will teach in Mormon 9:14 that Christ will be our only judge.
3 Nephi 27:28 Jesus now explains how the Disciples can continue receiving guidance and revelation from God. “And now I go unto the Father. And verily, I say unto you, whatsoever things ye shall ask the Father in my name shall be given unto you.” The phrase “I go unto the Father” is from John 14:28 and “And verily I say unto you” is in Luke 13:35 and “ye shall ask the Father in my name” is from John 16:23 and “shall be given unto you” is in Luke 6:38.
3 Nephi 27:29 “Therefore, ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for he that asketh, receiveth; and unto him that knocketh, it shall be opened.” ^The words “that asketh, receiveth” are in Matthew 7:8.
3 Nephi 27:30 “And now, behold, my joy is great, even unto fulness, because of you, and also this generation; for none of them are lost.” Meaning, every one of those people of Nephi will be exalted in the celestial kingdom. The phrase “all the holy angels” is in Matthew 25:31.
3 Nephi 27:31 He wants them to understand none of them will be lost.
3 Nephi 27:32 However, Jesus will express His sadness for future generations. “But behold, it sorroweth me because of the fourth generation from this generation, for they are led away captive by him even as was the son of perdition; for they will sell me for silver and for gold, and for that which moth doth corrupt and which thieves can break through and steal. And in that day will I visit them, even in turning their works upon their own heads.” The phrase “the son of perdition” is in John 17:12. Jesus was predicting that Satan will lead future generations into materialism and away from believing in God. This reminds us of the prophecy given by Alma to Helaman (see Helaman 45:8-14) that the Nephites will one day be annihilated. Eventually, they will be destroyed by the results of their own choices. Despite the threefold visitation by Jesus Himself, the Nephites are doomed to destruction owing to their unfaithfulness, perhaps causing us to wonder why Jesus would come to them in the first place rather than their brethren, the Lamanites, who would survive them. In 4 Nephi 24 we will learn that wickedness commenced about AD. 200.
3 Nephi 27:33 “And it came to pass that when Jesus had ended these sayings he said unto his disciples: Enter ye in at the strait gate; for strait is the gate, and narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there be that find it; but wide is the gate, and broad the way, which leads to death, and many there be that travel therein, until the night cometh, wherein no man can work.” The phrase “when Jesus had ended these sayings” is from Matthew 7:28.
3 Nephi 28:1 Jesus now has a personal interview with each one of the 12 Disciples. “AND it came to pass when Jesus had said these words, he spake unto his disciples, one by one, saying unto them: What is it that ye desire of me, after that I am gone to the Father?”
3 Nephi 28:2 “And they all spake, save it were three, saying: We desire that after we have lived unto the age of man, that our ministry, wherein thou has called us, may have an end, that we may speedily come unto thee in thy kingdom.” The Celestial kingdom and Exaltation, of course.
3 Nephi 28:3 Jesus says that they are blessed in this request. And He promises that when each of them turn 72 years old, they will die and go to His kingdom.
3 Nephi 28:4 Next, Jesus turns to the remaining 3 disciples and asks them what their desires would be? Of course, being God, Jesus would already know the answer to that. ^The words “said unto them: What will ye” are in Matthew 26:15.
3 Nephi 28:5 But, the Disciples hesitated and worried about asking for their desire. The words “they durst not” are in Luke 20:40.
3 Nephi 28:6 Putting their minds at ease, “And he said unto them: Behold, I know your thoughts, and ye have desired the thing which John, my beloved, who was with me in my ministry, before that I was lifted up by the Jews, desired of me.” (see John 21:21-25 and D&C 7:1-8). He knew they wanted to live forever. Besides, who wants to get old, sick, and die?
3 Nephi 28:7 “Therefore, more blessed are ye, for ye shall never taste of death; but ye shall live to behold all the doings of the Father unto the children of men, even until all things shall be fulfilled according to the will of the Father, when I shall come in my glory with the powers of heaven.” Though they face death, they will not taste death. The phrase “shall never taste of death” is in John 8:52 and “the will of the Father” is in John 5:30 and “the powers of heaven” in Luke 21:26. These three men are given the promise they would never die, but would remain on the Earth until His second coming. However, the Bible is clear in explaining that God has “appointed” every man to die (see Hebrews 9:27).
3 Nephi 28:8 “And ye shall never endure the pains of death; but when I shall come in my glory ye shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye from mortality to immortality; and then shall ye be blessed in the kingdom of my Father.” Latter-day Saints describe this “twinkling” change as being “translated.” The phrase “the pains of death” is in Acts 2:24 and “in the twinkling of an eye” is from 1 Corinthians 15:42.
3 Nephi 28:9 “And again, ye shall not have pain which ye shall dwell in the flesh, neither sorrow save it be for the sins of the world; and all this will I do because of the thing which ye have desired of me, for ye have desired that ye might bring the souls of men unto me, while the world shall stand.” If that was the case, then the church never completely apostatized as the LDS claim it did. The words “the sins of the world” are in John 1:29.
3 Nephi 28:10 “And for this cause ye shall have fulness of joy; and ye shall sit down in the kingdom of my Father; yea, your joy shall be full, even as the Father hath given me fulness of joy; and ye shall be even as I am, and I am even as the Father; and the Father and I are one;” This “fulness of joy” is exaltation in the Celestial kingdom. And to be as Jesus and Father are, is to become gods like them. That is the ultimate, goal of all Latter-day Saints. The words “shall sit down in the kingdom of” are in Luke 13:29 and “the Father hath given” are in John 5:36 and “even as the Father” are in John 12:50.
3 Nephi 28:11 “And the Holy Ghost beareth record of the Father and me; and the Father giveth the Holy Ghost unto the children of men, because of me.”
3 Nephi 28:12 Then, like in the movie E.T. – Jesus used His finger to touch the nine Disciples who will suddenly die at the mysterious age of 72. Afterwards, Jesus departed.
3 Nephi 28:13 Speaking of the remaining Three Nephite Disciples, “And behold, the heavens were opened, and they were caught up into heaven, and saw and heard unspeakable things.” Things too sacred or secret to be talked about or described with words. The words “up into heaven and” are in Mark 16:19.
3 Nephi 28:14 “And it was forbidden them that they should utter; neither was it given unto them power that they could utter the things which they saw and heard;”
3 Nephi 28:15 Here is a meshing of familiar verses from the New Testament. “And whether they were in the body or out of the body, they could not tell; for it did seem unto them like a transfiguration of them, that they were changed from this body of flesh into an immortal state, that they could behold they things of God.” These few verses come from reading the Apostle Paul’s account in 2 Corinthians 12:2-4. “Transfiguration” means a temporary change which allows someone to be in the presence of the Lord, without being destroyed by His glory. This happened in Matthew 17:3. ^The words “the things of God” are in 1 Corinthians 2:11.
3 Nephi 28:16-18 When the Three Nephites returned to earth they went preaching and baptizing and filling people up with the Holy Ghost. Their primary responsibility from this time forward is missionary work.
3 Nephi 28:18 ^The phrase “receive the Holy Ghost” is from Acts 8:19.
3 Nephi 28:19-22 In spite of this amazing story, and the success the three were having converting people – enemies of the church, non-members – put them in prisons, which collapsed. They threw them in deep pits, which couldn’t hold them. Three times they were cast into a fiery furnace without harm. And twice they were thrown into a den of wild beasts but ended up playing with them as if they were playful lambs.
3 Nephi 28:19 ^The phrase “rent in twain” is from Matthew 27:51.
3 Nephi 28:20 ^The words “into a furnace” are in Matthew 13:42.
3 Nephi 28:23 The Three Nephites continued preaching and converting people to the church of God. Or is it the church of Christ? Even Mormon gets confused. ^The words “preach the gospel of” are in Romans 10:15 and “Christ unto all” are in Romans 3:22 and “the word of Jesus” in Matthew 26:75.
3 Nephi 28:24 Mormon is going to stop writing about these things for a while.
3 Nephi 28:25 “Behold, I was about to write the names of those who were never to taste of death, but the Lord forbade ; therefore I write them not, for they are hid from the world.” All the names of those 12 Nephite Disciples are listed in 3 Nephi 9:4, but Mormon was not allowed to identify the names of the 3 translated Disciples. The phrase “I was about to write” is in Revelation 10:4 and “taste of death” is in Matthew 16:28 and “write them not” from Revelation 10:4.
These Three Nephites continued to serve and teach for about 300 years before the Lord took them away to serve elsewhere on earth (see Mormon 1:13).
3 Nephi 28:26 As Mormon finishes writing about the Three Nephites, he gives a few more fascinating details. “But behold, I have seen them, and they have ministered unto me.” Even Mormon has seen them, hundreds of years later (see Mormon 8:10-11).
3 Nephi 28:27 “And behold they will be among the Gentiles, and the Gentiles shall know them not.” This verse has been used by many Latter-day Saints over the years to explain possible encounters with the famous Three Nephites. The LDS Church has stated that some of these stories are true but warned that some might just be folklore and myth. Nevertheless, Latter-day Saints love to speculate.
3 Nephi 28:28 “They will also be among the Jews, and the Jews shall know them not.” Wow, these guys get around.
3 Nephi 28:29 “And it shall come to pass, when they Lord seeth fit in his wisdom that they shall minister unto all the scattered tribes of Israel, and unto all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, and shall bring out of them unto Jesus many souls, that their desire may be fulfilled, and also because of the convincing power of God which is in them.”
3 Nephi 28:30 Here is how they get from place to place. “And they are as the angels of God, and if they shall pray unto the Father in the name of Jesus they can show themselves unto whatsoever man it seemeth them good.” The phrase “are as the angels of God” is in Matthew 22:30.
3 Nephi 28:31-32 These Three Nephites will accomplish great and marvelous works.
3 Nephi 28:33 Mormon now teaches the importance of reading and heeding the scriptures. ^The words “all the scriptures” are in Luke 24:27 and “give an account of” are in Luke 16:2 and “works of Christ” in Matthew 11:2.
3 Nephi 28:34 “And wo be unto him that will not hearken unto the words of Jesus, and also to them whom he hath chosen and sent among them; for whoso receiveth not the words of Jesus and the words of those whom he hath sent receiveth not him; and therefore he will not receive them at the last day.” No celestial glory for them. ^The words “receiveth not the” are in 1 Corinthians 2:14.
3 Nephi 28:35 “And it would be better for them if they had not been born. For do ye suppose that ye can get rid of the justice of an offended God, who hath been trampled under feet of men, that thereby salvation might come?” In other words, do you think they can be wicked, reject Christ and His gospel, and get away with it? When the wicked realize what they have done, they will wish they had never been born.
3 Nephi 28:36 Mormon gives a few more details about the Three Nephites, which he has learned since his previous engravings about them. “And now behold, as I spoke concerning those whom the Lord hath chosen, yea, even three who were caught up into the heavens, that I knew not whether they were cleansed from mortality to immortality –“ In the 1830 edition and our current edition, we have the word “cleansed” instead of the more expected word “changed.” ^The phrase “caught up into” is in 2 Corinthians 2:14 and “they were cleansed” is in Luke 17:14.
3 Nephi 28:37 “But behold, since I wrote, I have inquired of the Lord, and he hath made it manifest unto me that there must needs be a change wrought upon their bodies, or else it needs be that they must taste of death;” Otherwise, they would die when they get old like everyone else.
3 Nephi 28:38 “Therefore, that they might not taste of death there was a change wrought upon their bodies, that they might not suffer pain nor sorrow save it were for the sins of the world.”
3 Nephi 28:39 “Now this change was not equal to that which shall take place at the last day; but there was a change wrought upon them, insomuch that Satan could have no power over them, that he could not tempt them; and they were sanctified in the flesh , that they were holy, and that the powers of the earth could not hold them.” In other words, they can move about as they wish without any threat to their well-being.
3 Nephi 28:40 “And in this state they were to remain until the judgment day of Christ; and at that day they were to receive a greater change, and to be received into the kingdom of the Father to go no more out, but to dwell with God eternally in the heavens.” In that day, they will receive a resurrection. Which I don’t understand, unless they eventually die, first. The words “day of Christ” are in Philippians 1:10.
3 Nephi 29:1 As Mormon is wrapping up the book of 3 Nephi, he comments, “AND now behold, I say unto you that when the Lord shall see fit, in his wisdom, that these sayings shall come unto the Gentiles according to his word, then ye may know that the covenant which the Father hath made with the children of Israel, concerning their inheritance, is already beginning to be fulfilled.”
3 Nephi 29:2-3 The words of the prophets will be fulfilled, and the Lord will keep his covenant to gather the house of Israel in the last days.
3 Nephi 29:4-5 When the Book of Mormon comes forth, “wo” unto those who shall deny the Christ and His works.
3 Nephi 29:6 And, referring to continuous latter-day revelations, “Yea, wo unto him that shall deny the revelations of the Lord, and that they shall say the Lord no longer worketh by revelation, or by prophecy, or by gifts, or by tongues, or by healings, or by the power of the Holy Ghost!”
3 Nephi 29:7 Wo to them that practice priestcraft and deny the miracles of Christ. Those people will become like the son of perdition, for whom there was no mercy.
3 Nephi 29:8 “Yea, and ye need not any longer hiss, nor spurn, nor make game the Jews, nor any of the remnant of the house of Israel; for behold, the Lord remembereth his covenant unto them, and he will do unto them according to that which he hath sworn.”
3 Nephi 29:9 Mormon finally warns that no one can stop the Lord in carrying out His plans and promises.
3 Nephi 30:1-2 In this final short chapter ending the book of 3rd Nephi, Jesus issues an invitation through Mormon to the Gentiles to come unto Him, “… and be baptized in my name, that ye may receive a remission of your sins, and be filled with the Holy Ghost, that ye may be numbered with my people who are of the house of Israel.” The phrase “be filled with the Holy Ghost” is from Luke 1:15.
4 Nephi This book consists of just one chapter and covers approximately 285 years. The all-familiar phrase “And it came to pass” occurs 20 times. Everything was perfect for about 73 years after the appearance of the resurrected Jesus. Then everything went from heaven to hell in a single chapter.
4 Nephi 1-4 Everyone repented, was baptized and was filled with the Holy Ghost, and became members of the new Church of Christ. There were, no contentions, and everyone dealt fairly with each other and had all things in common.
4 Nephi 3 ^The phrase “of the heavenly gift” is from Hebrews 6:4.
4 Nephi 5 The Nephite disciples performed marvelous works, like: healings and raising the dead. The words “heal the sick” and “raise the dead” are in Matthew 10:8. The words “the lame to walk” and “the blind to” are in Matthew 15:31. The words “the deaf to hear” are in Mark 7:37 and “in the name of Jesus” are in Acts 16:18.
4 Nephi 6 And time passed.
4 Nephi 7 “And the Lord did prosper them exceedingly in the land; yea, insomuch that they did build cities again where there had been cities burned.” In the 1830 edition it read “they did fill cities” which was changed in later editions to “they did build cities.”
4 Nephi 8 “Yea, even that great city of Zarahemla did they cause to be built again.”
4 Nephi 9 But they could not rebuild the cities that Jesus had sunk in the earth and the waters. Those were covered up for good.
4 Nephi 10 “And now, behold, it came to pass the people of Nephi did wax strong, and did multiply exceedingly fast, and became an exceedingly fair and delightsome people.” God especially likes “fair and delightsome” people, who are white. “White” is established in Mormonism as prerequisite color that can be attained through righteousness alone. Behavior in the pre-existence and/or here on Earth appear to be a determining, factors in being (or becoming) “fair and delightsome” according to LDS theology.
4 Nephi 11 “And they were married, and given in marriage, and were blessed according to the multitude of the promises which the Lord had made unto them.” The phrase “given in marriage” is in Matthew 22:30.
4 Nephi 12 ’’And they did not walk any more after the performances and ordinances of the law of Moses; but they did walk after the commandments which they had received from their Lord and their God, continuing in fasting and prayer, and in meeting together oft both to pray and to hear the word of the Lord.” ^The words “and ordinances of the” are in Luke 1:6 and “fasting and prayer” are in 1 Corinthians 7:5.
4 Nephi 13 “And it came to pass that there was no contention among all the people, in all the land; but there were mighty miracles wrought among the disciples of Jesus..”
4 Nephi 14 Next, Mormon informs the reader that 9 of the Nephite 12 Disciples finally died when they reached the magical age of 72. “And it came to pass that the seventy and first year passed away, and also the seventy and second year, yea, and in fine, till the seventy and nineth year had passed away; yea, even an hundred years had passed away, and the disciples of Jesus whom he had chosen, had all gone to the paradise of God, save it were the three who should tarry; and there were other disciples ordained in their stead; and also many of that generation had passed away.” The phrase “the paradise of God” is in Revelation 2:7. So, the Three Nephites continued to live on and minister to the people. And just like in modern Mormonism other disciples were called to replace those who had past, away – maintaining a quorum of 12 Apostles for a little while longer.
4 Nephi 15 “And it came to pass that there was no contention in the land, because of the love of God which did dwell in the hearts of the people.” ^The phrase “the love of God” is in Luke 11:42.
4 Nephi 16 “And there were no envyings, nor strifes, nor tumults, nor whoredoms, nor lyings, nor murders, nor any manner of lasciviousness; and surely there could not be a happier people among all the people who had been created by the hand of God.” In the 1830 edition page 515 it read “nor no manner of lasciviousness” which was changed in later editions to “nor any manner of lasciviousness.”
4 Nephi 17 This is what Mormonism teaches is a “Zion society.” There were no class distinctions. “There were no robbers, nor murderers, neither were there Lamanites, nor any manner of -ites; but they were in one, the children of Christ, and heirs to the kingdom of God.” I guess they had earned near perfection. The words “in one, the children of” are in John 11:52 and “the kingdom of God” are in Matthew 6:33. In the 1830 edition page 515 it read “nor no manner of ites” which was changed in later editions to “nor any manner of ites.”
4 Nephi 18 “And how blessed were they! For the Lord did bless them in all their doings; yea, even they were blessed and prospered until an hundred and ten years had passed away; and the first generation from Christ had passed away, and there was no contention in all the land.”
4 Nephi 19 Nephi, who kept the records dies. Then his son, Amos keeps the large plates of Nephi for the next 84 years.
4 Nephi 20 Eventually, a small group of people revolted from the church and took upon them the name of Lamanites, again.
4 Nephi 21 “And it came to pass that Amos died also, (and it was an hundred and ninety and four years from the coming of Christ) and his son Amos kept the record in his stead; and he also kept it upon the plates of Nephi; and it was also written in the book of Nephi, which is this book.” Referring to 4th Nephi. When the Book of Mormon was first printed, 3rd and 4th Nephi were each called the Book of Nephi. In the 1879 edition, the words Third and Fourth were added to the two books in order to help distinguish one from the other.
4 Nephi 22 “And it came to pass that two hundred years had passed away; and the second generation had all passed away save it were a few.” So, it is about the year AD 201.
4 Nephi 23 “And now I Mormon, would that ye should know that the people had multiplied, insomuch that they were spread upon all the face of the land, and that they had become exceedingly rich, because of their prosperity in Christ.” There is that prosperity gospel again! Which always gets them into trouble. ^The words “insomuch that they were” are in Mark 2:12.
4 Nephi 24 We will now see the cycle of apostasy that leads to the downfall of a righteous nation. Because of their riches, people became proud and wore expensive clothing. The phrase “things of the world” is in 1 Corinthians 1:27.
4 Nephi 25 They became selfish and didn’t share.
4 Nephi 26 “And they began to be divided into classes; and they began to build up churches unto themselves to get gain, and began to deny the true church of Christ.”
4 Nephi 27 “And it came to pass that when two hundred and ten years had passed away there were many churches which professed to know the Christ, and yet they did deny the more parts of his gospel, insomuch that they did receive all manner of wickedness, and did administer that which was sacred unto him to whom it had been forbidden because of unworthiness.” They were a cafeteria style church – picking which parts of the gospel to believe and live and leaving the rest. And, they had lowered the standards as far as the sacrament and personal worthiness is concerned.
4 Nephi 28 “And this church did multiply exceedingly because of iniquity, and because of the power of Satan who did get hold upon their hearts.” The phrase “the power of Satan is in Acts 26:18.
4 Nephi 29 “And again, there was another church which denied the Christ; and they did persecute the true church of Christ, because of their humility and their belief in Christ; and they did despise them because of the many miracles which were wrought among them.” The words “many miracles” are in John 12:37.
4 Nephi 30 “Therefore they did exercise power and authority over the disciples of Jesus who did tarry with them, and they did cast them into prison; but by the power of the word of God, which was in them, the prisons were rent in twain, and they went forth doing mighty miracles among them.” The phrase “power and authority” is in Luke 9:1 and “of the word of God” is in Revelation 1:2 and “rent in twain” is taken from Matthew 27:51.
4 Nephi 31 The people sought to kill the Three Nephite Disciples. The words “seek to kill” are in John 7:25.
4 Nephi 32-33 They threw them into furnaces and dens of wild beasts, but they were not harmed.
4 Nephi 34 “Nevertheless, the people did harden their hearts, for they were led by many priests and false prophets to build up many churches, and to do all manner of iniquity. And they did smite upon the people of Jesus; but the people of Jesus did not smite again. And thus they did dwindle in unbelief and wickedness, from year to year, even until two hundred and thirty years had passed away.” The words “in unbelief” are in Romans 11:23.
4 Nephi 35 Then there was a great division among the people.
4 Nephi 36 “And it came to pass that in this year there arose a people who were called the Nephites, and they were true believers in Christ; and among them there were those who were called by the Lamanites – Jacobites, and Josephites, and Zoramites;” ^The words “there arose a” are in Matthew 8:24.
4 Nephi 37 “Therefore the true believers in Christ, and the true worshippers of Christ, (among whom were the three disciples of Jesus who should tarry) were called Nephites, and Jacobites, and Josephites, and Zoramites.”
4 Nephi 38 “And it came to pass that they who rejected the gospel were called Lamanites, and Lemuelites, and Ishmalelites, and they did not dwindle in unbelief, but they did wilfully rebel against the gospel of Christ; and they did teach their children that they should not believe, even as their fathers, from the beginning, did dwindle.”
4 Nephi 39 The Lamanites were taught to hate the children of Nephi from the beginning. ^The phrase “the children of God” is in 1 John 5:2.
4 Nephi 40-41 By AD. 260, there were exceedingly more numerous wicked people than the people of God.
4 Nephi 42 “And it came to pass that the wicked part of the people began again to build up the secret oaths and combinations of Gadianton.” This was to support murder and terrorism among the people.
4 Nephi 43 Even the Nephites were becoming proud because of their wealth.
4 Nephi 44 Speaking of the Three Nephites, “And from this time the disciples began to sorrow for the sins of the world.” ^The words “the disciples began to” are in Luke 19:37.
4 Nephi 45 By AD 300, almost everyone becomes wicked. There is no discernable difference between the Nephites and the Lamanites.
4 Nephi 46 “And it came to pass that the robbers of Gadianton did spread over all the face of the land; and there were none that were righteous save it were the disciples of Jesus. And gold and silver did they lay up in store in abundance, and did traffic in all manner of traffic.”
4 Nephi 47 Amos II dies and his brother Ammaron inherits the plates.
4 Nephi 1:48 “And it came to pass that when three hundred and twenty years had passed away, Ammaron, being constrained by the Holy Ghost, did hide up the records which were sacred – yea, even all the sacred records which had been handed down from generation to generation, which were sacred – even until the three hundred and twentieth year from the coming of Christ.”
4 Nephi 1:49 “And he did hide them up unto the Lord, that they might come again unto the remnant of the house of Jacob, according to the prophecies and the promises of the Lord. And thus is the end of the record of Ammaron.”
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Until next time, God Bless!