Helaman 13-16

How are slippery treasures in the Book of Mormon related to slippery treasures of Joseph Smith’s day? How were the signs of Jesus’ birth and death that Samuel prophesied, different from the New Testament accounts? How was it that the Nephites could not kill Samuel with their arrows as he stood upon the city wall?

Samuel the Lamanite

Slippery Treasures

Samuel upon the City Wall

You will notice some parallel phrases and words from the New Testament that are in the Book of Mormon text.  We will leave it up to you to conclude if these phrases and words came from the King James Bible. For a complete transcript of this lesson, please click on the link in the description below.

In this episode we are introduced to Samuel, the Lamanite.  He is one of the great prophets of the Book of Mormon, who comes on the scene to give his famous sermon on the wall and then leaves, never to be heard of again. 

Helaman 13 The word “behold” is engraved on the plates 26 times in this chapter.

Helaman 13:1 As we begin, it is 6 years before the birth of Christ.  The Lamanites have become a righteous people, but the Nephites continue in wickedness.  In the 1830 edition page 441 it read “And it came to pass that he did preach many-day repentance.”  In later editions it was changed to read “he did preach, many days, repentance.” 

Helaman 13:2 Samuel came to the Nephites in the land of Zarahemla to preach repentance to them, but he was cast out.  So, he decided to return home.

Helaman 13:3 “But behold, the voice of the Lord came unto him, that he should return again, and prophesy unto the people whatsoever things should come into his heart.”  The phrase “the voice of the Lord came unto him” is from Acts 7:31. In the 1830 edition page 441 it read “whatsoever things should come in his heart.”  This was changed in later editions to read into his heart.” 

Helaman 13:4 When he returned to Zarahemla, he was not allowed to enter the city.  So, he climbed up on the wall and stretched out his arms and began to prophesy.  The words “would not suffer that” are in Mark 11:16.

Helaman 13:5 He told the people that the sword of Justice hangs over their heads and predicts that in 400 years it shall fall on this people. 

Helaman 13:6 Nothing can save this people but repentance and faith on the Lord Jesus Christ, who suffered and was slain for his people. The words “come into the world” are in John 16:28.

Helaman 13:7 Samuel tells them an angel wanted him to share the good news of the coming Jesus, but they would not listen.  The words “bring glad tidings” are in Romans 10:15.

Helaman 13:8 Samuel tells them what happens to those who reject the gospel message. “Therefore, thus saith the Lord: Because of the hardness of the hearts of the people of the Nephites, except they repent I will take away my word from them, and I will withdraw my Spirit from them, and I will suffer them no longer, and I will turn the hearts of their brethren against them.”  The words “turn the hearts of” are in Luke 1:17.

Helaman 13:9 The Lord says, in 400 years He will punish them with wars and famine and with pestilence – meaning, plagues and diseases.  Mormon chapter 6 records the final destruction of the Nephites, 400 years from the time of Samuel’s prophecy.

Helaman 13:10 “Yea, I will visit them in my fierce anger, and there shall be those of the fourth generation who shall live, of your enemies, to behold your utter destruction; and this shall surely come except ye repent, saith the Lord; and those of the fourth generation shall visit your destruction.” 

 

Helaman 13:11 But, if they will repent God will turn away His anger.

Helaman 13:13 Samuel teaches that some righteous people in a wicked city can prevent its complete destruction.  “But blessed are they who will repent, for them will I spare.  But behold, if it were not for the righteous who are in this great city, behold, I would cause that fire should come down out of heaven and destroy it.”  The phrase “down out of heaven” is in Revelation 3:12.

Helaman 13:14 Samuel warns about the dangers to them if they run the righteous out of town. “But behold, it is for the righteous’ sake that it is spared.  But behold, the time cometh, saith the Lord, that when ye shall cast out the righteous from among you, then shall ye be ripe for destruction; yea, wo be unto this great city, because of the wickedness and abominations which are in her.”  We recall the wicked city of Ammonihah which was completely destroyed after they ran the righteous men out of that city and burned their women and children (see Alma 14:7-8 and Alma 16:9-10).

Helaman 13:15-16 Samuel said “wo” to all the other Nephite cities round about the land because of their wickedness and abominations. 

Helaman 13:16 In the 1830 edition page 442 it read “cities which is in the land” and “abominations which is in them.”  In later editions both times iswas replaced with was.” 

Helaman 13:17 Samuel talks about a curse of not being able to keep their wealth.

Helaman 13:18 “And it shall come to pass, saith the Lord of Hosts , yea, our great and true God, that whoso shall hide up treasures in the earth shall find them again no more, because of the great curse of the land, save he be a righteous man and shall hide it up unto the Lord.”  The words “and true God” are in 1 Thessalonians 1:9.

Helaman 13:19 “For I will, saith the Lord, that they shall hide up their treasures unto me; and cursed be they who hide not up their treasures unto me; for none hideth up their treasures unto me save it be the righteous; and he that hideth not up his treasures unto me cursed is he, and also the treasure, and none shall redeem it because of the curse of the land.” 

Helaman 13:20 “And the day shall come that they shall hide up their treasures, because they have set their hearts upon riches; and because they have set their hearts upon their riches, and will hide up their treasures when they shall flee before their enemies; because they will not hide them up unto me, cursed be they and also their treasures; and in that day shall they be smitten, saith the Lord.” What a mouth full!  In the 1830 edition page 443 it read I will hide up their treasures” which was changed in later editions to read and will hide up their treasures.”  So, from Ito and.”

Helaman 13:21 “Behold ye, the people of this great city, and hearken unto my words; yea, hearken unto the words which the Lord saith; for behold, he saith that ye are cursed because of your riches, and also are your riches cursed because ye have set your hearts upon them, and have not hearkened unto the words of him who gave them unto you.”  There is a lot of emphasis on riches and treasures in these verses.  It stems from the treasure-seeking activities of the 19th century. 

Helaman 13:22 “Ye do not remember the Lord your God in the things with which he hath blessed you, but ye do always remember your riches, not to thank the Lord your God for them; yea, your hearts are not drawn out unto the Lord, but they do swell with great pride, unto boasting, and unto great swelling, envyings, strifes, malice, persecutions, and murders, and all manner of iniquities.”   

Helaman 13:23 Because of their iniquities God has cursed them at this time.

Helaman 13:24-26 They have cast out the prophets, mocked, stoned, and killed them as they have always done in the past.  Samuel exposes their thinking and actions toward these true prophets, calling them – false prophets. 

Helaman 13:24 In the 1830 edition page 443 it read “because of this time which has arrriven.”  The word arrriven” with an extra “rwas changed in the 1964 edition to arrived.”

Helaman 13:25 In the 1830 edition page 443 it read we would not have slain” andwe would not have stoned.” In later editions the wehas been changed to yein both places

Helaman 13:26 The words “which testifieth” are in John 21:24 and, “a false prophet” are in Acts 13:6 and, “of the devil” in Matthew 4:1.

Helaman 13:27-28 Samuel says, if someone comes along and calls “evil good, and good evil” the people will say he is a prophet.  They will honor and praise him. 

Helaman 13:29 “O ye wicked and ye perverse generation; ye hardened and stiffnecked people, how long will ye suppose that the Lord will suffer you?  Yea, how long will ye suffer yourselves to be led by foolish and blind guides?  Yea, how long will ye choose darkness rather than light?”  These are words spoken by Jesus while He was in His ministry.  The phrase “perverse generation” is from Matthew 17:17 and, “blind guides” is from Matthew 23:24 and, “darkness rather than light” is taken from John 3:19.   In the 1830 edition page 444 it read “ye suffer yourselves to be lead by foolish and blind guides” which was changed in later editions to use the past-tense form of the word led.” 

Helaman 13:30 “Yea, behold, the anger of the Lord is already kindled against you; behold, he hath cursed the land because of your iniquity.

Helaman 13:31 This verse comes directly out of the experience of Joseph Smith as a treasure seeker. “And behold, the time cometh that he curseth your riches, that they become slippery, that ye cannot hold them; and in the days of your poverty ye cannot retain them.”  The words “the time cometh that” are in John 16:2.

Helaman 13:32-33 Then the people will cry, weep, howl, lament, and wished they had repented and not killed the prophets. 

Helaman 13:33 The words “killed the prophets” are in Matthew 23:31 and, “in that day ye” are in John 16:23. 

Helaman 13:34-35 Their tools and swords will disappear, and their treasures will slip away because of the curse of the land. 

The notion of slippery treasure, guardian spirits, and curses reflects early American folklore. These beliefs infuse the Book of Mormon text and descriptions of its discovery and translation. There are too many similarities to ignore. The prophet Mormon describes a problem in ancient America with language that is very much in line with nineteenth-century American treasure seekers. “The inhabitants thereof began to hide up their treasures in the earth; and they became slippery,” wrote the prophet Mormon. The scene was evidently such that “there were sorceries, and witchcrafts, and magics . . .  the land was cursed” (see Mormon 1:18-19). And it is not just Mormon who infuses treasure- digging language into the narrative. Helaman wrote in Helaman 12:18-19 “And behold, if a man hide up a treasure in the earth, and the Lord shall say—Let it be accursed . . . behold, it shall be accursed. And if the Lord shall say—Be thou accursed, that no man shall find these from this time henceforth and forever—behold, no man getteth it henceforth and forever” And here in Helaman 13:35 “Yeah, we have hid up our treasures and they have slipped away from us, because of the curse of the land.”

Martin Harris, one of Joseph Smith’s earliest supporters and an official “witness” of the gold plates, later shared an intriguing story of his experience digging with Joseph Smith, Sr. and Joseph Smith, Jr.  “I will tell you a wonderful thing that happened after Joe had found the plates. Three of us took some tools to go to the hill (Cumorah) and hunt for some more boxes, or gold or something, and indeed we found a stone box. We got quite excited about it and dug quite carefully around it, and we were ready to take it up, but behold, by some unseen power it slipped back into the hill. We stood there and looked at it, and one of us took a crowbar and tried to drive it through the lid to hold it, but it glanced and broke one corner of the box.” They reportedly broke off a chunk of the chest as it receded into the hill, retaining the piece as a memento.

Helaman 13:36 “O that we had repented in the day that the word of the Lord came unto us; for behold the land is cursed, and all things are become slippery, and we cannot hold them.”  The phrase “all things are become” is in 2 Corinthians 5:17.

Helaman 13:37 Samuel says that the Nephites are surrounded by the demons of the devil and they will wish they could escape God’s wrath.  The words “of him who hath” are in Romans 8:20.

Helaman 13:38 “But behold, your days of probation are past; ye have procrastinated the day of your salvation until it is everlastingly too late, and your destruction is made sure; yea, for ye have sought all the days of your lives for that which ye could not obtain; and ye have sought for happiness in doing iniquity, which thing is contrary to the nature of that righteousness which is in our great and Eternal Head.”  (see Alma 34:32-34) The phrase “righteousness which is in” is in Philippians 3:6.

Helaman 13:39 “O ye people of the land, that ye would hear my words!  And I pray that the anger of the Lord be turned away from you, and that ye would repent and be saved.”  The words “And I pray” are in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 and, “and be saved” in Luke 8:12.

Helaman 14 The word “behold” will be used 18 times in this chapter.

Helaman 14:1 “AND now it came to pass that Samuel, the Lamanite, did prophesy a great many more things which cannot be written.”  It must have been a very, long speech.

Helaman 14:2 “And behold, he said unto them: Behold, I give unto you a sign; for five years more cometh, and behold, then cometh the Son of God to redeem all those who shall believe on his name.”  The words “then cometh of” are in 1 Corinthians 15:24.

Helaman 14:3 Samuel is now going to give details of Jesus’ birth. “And behold, this will I give unto you for a sign at the time of his coming; for behold, there shall be great lights in heaven, insomuch that in the night before he cometh there shall be no darkness, insomuch that it shall appear unto man as if it was day.”

Helaman 14:4 “Therefore, there shall be one day and a night and a day, as if it were one day and there were no night; and this shall be unto you for a sign; for ye shall know of the rising of the sun and also of its setting; therefore they shall know of a surety that there shall be two days and a night; nevertheless the night shall not be darkened; and it shall be the night before he is born.”  About 36 hours of continuous light – which by the way, was never experienced in Israel.  Samuel makes it clear from this sign that there will be no doubt about His birth.  The phrase “there shall be one” is in John 10:16.

Helaman 14:5 He also tells of another sign. “And behold, there shall a new star arise, such an one as ye never have beheld; and this also shall be a sign unto you.”

Helaman 14:6 “And behold this is not all, there shall be many signs and wonders in heaven.”  He is speaking of other astronomical signs and wonders.  The phrase “many signs and wonders” is from Acts 5:12.

Helaman 14:7 “And it shall come to pass that ye shall all be amazed, and wonder, insomuch that ye shall fall to the earth.”

Helaman 14:8 Here, Samuel basically says what Jesus told Nicodemus.  “And it shall come to pass that whosoever shall believe on the Son of God, the same shall have everlasting life.” The phrase “have everlasting life” is in John 3:16.   

Helaman 14:9 Samuel tells the Nephites the reason he prophesied these things is because an angel told him to.  The words “by his angel” are in Revelation 1:1.

Helaman 14:10 Because Samuel is a Lamanite and is telling them hard things, the Nephites wanted to kill him.  The phrase “have spoken unto you the words” are in Hebrews 13:7.

Helaman 14:11 “And ye shall hear my words, for, for this intent have I come up upon the walls of this city, that ye might hear and know of the judgments of God which do await you because of your iniquities, and also that ye might know the conditions of repentance;”   

What are the “conditions of repentance?”  According to the LDS Church website, here are the conditions or steps of repentance:

1.     We Must Recognize Our Sins. To repent, we must admit to ourselves that we have sinned. …

2.     We Must Feel Sorrow for Our Sins. …

3.     We Must Forsake Our Sins. …

4.     We Must Confess Our Sins. …

5.     We Must Make Restitution. …

6.     We Must Forgive Others. …

7.     We Must Keep the Commandments of God.

 

Helaman 14:12 “And also that ye might know of the coming of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of heaven and of earth, the Creator of all things from the beginning; and that ye might know of the signs of his coming, to the intent that ye might believe on his name.”  That verse tells us that Jesus is both the Son of God and the Father of Heaven.  This has been taught to us before in the Book of Mormon (see Mosiah 3:8). That is because the author of the Book of Mormon believed in monotheism.  The phrase “of Jesus Christ, the son of God” is in Mark 1:1.

Helaman 14:13 “And if ye believe on his name ye will repent of all your sins, that thereby ye may have a remission of them through his merits.”  Through His merits – not ours.

Helaman 14:14 “And behold, again, another sign I given unto you, yea, a sign of his death.”  The words “another sign” are in Revelation 15:1.

Helaman 14:15 “For behold, he surely must die that salvation may come; yea, it behooveth him and becometh expedient that he dieth, to bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, that thereby men may be brought into the presence of the Lord.”  The phrase “the resurrection of the dead” is from Matthew 22:31.

Helaman 14:16 “Yea, behold, this death bringeth to pass the resurrection, and redeemeth all mankind from the first death – that spiritual death; for all mankind, by the fall of Adam being cut off from the presence of the Lord, are considered as dead, both as to things temporal and to things spiritual.”  Samuel is talking about both physical and spiritual death.

Helaman 14:17 Then Samuel tells them that through the resurrection of Christ all mankind will be resurrected to be brought before God to be judged.

Helaman 14:18-19 Those who repent are not subject to spiritual death or permanent separation from God.  Those who do not repent will suffer a second spiritual death and be cut off and cast into eternal fire or hell.  So repent, in order to avoid the condemnation of God. 

Helaman 14:18 The words “things pertaining to” are in 1 Corinthians 6:4.

Helaman 14:20 Samuel now provides detail regarding the signs of Jesus’ crucifixion and death. “But behold, as I said unto you concerning another sign, a sign of his death, behold, in that day that he shall suffer death the sun shall be darkened and refuse to give his light you; and also the moon and the stars; and there shall be no light upon the face of this land, even from the time that the shall suffer death, for the space of three days, to the time that he shall rise again from the dead.”  No sun, moon, or stars to be seen for 72 hours.  The phrase “the sun shall be darkened and” is in Mark 13:24 and, “he shall rise again” is in Matthew 20:19 and, “from the dead” in Matthew 14:2.  In the Bible at the time of the crucifixion there were just three hours of darkness (see Luke 23:44).  However, here it states there will be darkness “for the space of three days.” Of course, this is a huge difference.  Which one is true?  Can God be responsible for conflicting statements such as these?

Helaman 14:21-24 Samuel says, but that is not all that will happen after Jesus dies.  There will be thunder and lightening for many hours, the earth will shake, and rocks will break.  There will be great storms, many mountains will be smashed into valleys, valleys will become mountains, highways will break apart and cities will become desolate (see 3 Nephi 8).  We do not read of this magnitude of destruction in the Holy Land at Jesus’ death.   

Helaman 14:21 The phrase “thunderings and lightnings” is from Revelation 8:5.

Helaman 14:22 In the 1830 edition page 447 it read “both above the earth and both beneath.”  In later editions the second word both in that sentence was omitted.  The words “rent in twain” are in Matthew 27:51.

Helaman 14:25 “And many graves shall be opened, and shall yield up many of their dead; and many saints shall appear unto many.”  Dead people will be walking around.  (see Matthew 27:52-53).

Helaman 14:26-28 Then Samuel repeats his prophecies again about the destruction and the darkness – all to the extent that no one will have an excuse not to believe.  When Jesus visit the Nephites following His resurrection, He commands that Samuel’s prophesy – overlooked by the record keeper – should be recorded (see 3 Nephi 23:9-13).

Helaman 14:28 The phrase “And the angel said unto me” is in Revelation 17:7 and, “see greater things than these” is in John 1:50.

Helaman 14:29-31 Samuel reminds them that God has given people free agency to choose to believe and be saved or disbelieve and be damned.  It is their choice between life or death.  

Helaman 14:29 The words “might be saved” are in 2 Thessalonians 2:10 and, “righteous judgment” are in John 7:24. 

Helaman 14:31 The phrase “life or death” is in 1 Corinthians 3:22 and, “unto that which is good” is in Romans 16:19 and, “that which is evil” in Luke 6:45. 

Helaman 15:1 Samuel is very, clear and concise in saying, “AND now, my beloved brethren, behold, I declare unto you that except ye shall repent your houses shall be left unto you desolate.”  The phrase “I declare unto you” is in 1 Corinthians 15:1 and, “left unto you desolate” is in Luke 13:35.

Helaman 15:2 Their women with children will mourn and the pregnant ones will be run over and left to die.  The words “trodden down and” are in Luke 8:5.

Helaman 15:3-4 The Nephites were the chosen ones of God whom He loved, but the Lamanites God hated because of the tradition of their fathers.  However, salvation came to the Lamanites through the preaching of Nephites and God has prolonged their days.  God does not literally hate them.  He is simply unable to bless them as He would have if they lived righteously. 

Helaman 15:5 Speaking of the Lamanites “And I would that ye should behold that the more part of them are in the path of their duty, and they do walk circumspectly before God, and they do observe to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments according to the law of Moses.”  He is talking about the commandments, rituals, and ordinances God gave the children of Israel through Moses.  How exactly did the Lamanites keep the law of Moses?  The words “walk circumspectly” are in Ephesians 5:15.

Helaman 15:6-8 The Lamanites are adding to themselves new converts daily.  Having faith and repenting and believing the scriptures and the prophets, they have had a change of heart.  They are steadfast in their faith. 

Helaman 15:6 The phrase “to the knowledge of the truth” is in 2 Timothy 3:7.

Helaman 15:7 The phrase “the holy scriptures” is in Romans 1:2. 

Helaman 15:9-10  Samuel reminds the Nephites that the converted people of Ammon – formerly known as the Anti-Nephi-Lehies – had such a faith in Christ that they refused to take up weapons to defend themselves against their enemies and buried their weapons of war. 

Helaman 15:9 The words “lest by any means” are in Galatians 2:2 and, “faith in Christ” are in Acts 24:24.

Helaman 15:10 The words “once enlightened” are in Hebrew 6:4.

Helaman 15:11 “Yea, even if they should dwindle in unbelief the Lord shall prolong their days, until the time shall come which hath been spoken of by our fathers, and also by the prophet Zenos, and many other prophets, concerning the restoration of our brethren, the Lamanites, again to the knowledge of the truth –“

Helaman 15:12-13 Samuel prophesies that in the last days before the second coming, the Lamanites will be brought back to the Lord.  In other words, the Native Americans will convert to Mormonism after being “driven to and fro”, hunted, smitten and scattered by the Gentiles.  The Lord will have mercy on them, and they will come to know their Redeemer.  We have not yet seen the results of that prophecy and it is doubtful that it will be fulfilled.

Helaman 15:12 The words “that in the latter times” are in 1 Timothy 4:1.

Helaman 15:14 “Therefore I say unto you, it shall be better for them than for you except ye repent.”

Helaman 15:15 “For behold, had the mighty works been shown unto them which have been shown unto you, yea, unto them who have dwindled in unbelief because of the traditions of their fathers, ye can see of yourselves that they never would again have dwindled in unbelief.”  The words “of the traditions of” are in Galatians 1:14. 

Helaman 15:16 “Therefore, saith the Lord: I will not utterly destroy them, but I will cause that in the day of my wisdom they shall return again unto me, saith the Lord.” 

Helaman 15:17 “And now behold, saith the Lord, concerning the people of the Nephites: If they will not repent, and observe to do my will, I will utterly destroy them, saith the Lord, because of their unbelief notwithstanding the many mighty works which I have done among them; and as surely as the Lord liveth shall these things be, saith the Lord.”  The phrase “because of their unbelief” is in Mark 6:6.

Helaman 16 By the end of this chapter, there will be only one year left before the birth of Jesus.

Helaman 16:1 Many of the Nephites who listened to Samuel preach were converted.  They immediate found Nephi and were baptized.  In the 1830 edition page 449 it read “when they had came forth” which was changed in later editions to read “when they had come forth.”

Helaman 16:2 “But as many as there were who did not believe in the words of Samuel were angry with him; and they cast stones at him upon the wall, and also many shot arrows at him as he stood upon the wall; but the Spirit of the Lord was with him, insomuch that they could not hit him with their stones neither with their arrows.”  This image of Samuel on the wall with arrows and stones being hurled at him became a favorite scene of LDS artwork.  The words “they cast stones” are in Mark 12:4. 

Helaman 16:3 “Now when they saw that they could not hit him, there were many more who did believe on his words, insomuch that they went away unto Nephi to be baptized.”  Either Samuel was being protected by God from the arrows and stones, or the Nephites had really bad aim. 

This story of Samuel the Lamanite standing on a wall warning the people is one of many other similarities from a book that was available in Joseph Smith’s day.  LDS General Authority, Church historian and scholar Elder B.H. Roberts compared the book, View of the Hebrews written by Ethan Smith, with the Book of Mormon.  His research brought him to the following conclusion, recorded in Studies of the Book of Mormon, pg. 240 Did Ethan Smith’s View of the Hebrews furnish structural material for Joseph Smith’s Book of Mormon?  “It has been pointed out in these pages that there are many things in the former book that might well have suggested many major things in the other.  Not a few things merely, one or two, or half dozen, but many; it is this fact of many things of similarity and cumulative force of them that makes them so serious a menace to Joseph Smith’s story of the Book of Mormon’s origin.”  View of the Hebrews, which was first published in Vermont in 1823, attempts to establish as fact that the ancient Israelites colonized the Americas, even splitting into two portions: a civilized group, and a barbaric group, which wipes out the civilized group and from which the modern Native Americans are descended.  It appears that Joseph Smith was trying to align his story with the evidence of his time. 

Helaman 16:4-5 At the same time Samuel the Lamanite was preaching on the wall, Nephi was doing his thing.  He was baptizing, prophesying, preaching, crying repentance, showing signs and wonders and working miracles – all to convince the people that Christ will shortly be born. 

Helaman 16:4 The phrase “miracles among the people” is in Acts 6:8.

Helaman 16:6-8 But the, majority of the people did not believe Samuel’s message and accused him of having the power of a devil.  Their captains tried to arrest him, but Samuel jumped down from the wall and fled back to his own country, where he preached among his own people.  And, Samuel was never heard of again among the Nephites. 

Helaman 16:6 The phrase “he hath a devil” is in Matthew 11:18 and, “away with him” is in Acts 21:36.

Helaman 16:7 The words “their hands on him” are in Mark 14:46.

Helaman 16:9-12 During the following few years, most of the Nephites were wicked and proud, while the rest of them walked more circumspectly or righteously before God.

Helaman 16:12 The words “was contrary to” are in Colossians 2:14. In the 1830 edition page 450 it read “And there were but little alteration in the affairs.”  In later editions the word werewas changed to was.”

Helaman 16:13 It is now the year 2 BC.  “But it came to pass in the ninetieth year of the reign of the judges, there were great signs given unto the people, and wonders; and the words of the prophets began to be fulfilled.”

Helaman 16:14 “And angels did appear unto men, wise men, and did declare unto them glad tidings of great joy; thus in this year the scriptures began to be fulfilled.”  It was beginning to look a lot like Christmas!  Were these the same wise men mentioned in Matthew 2:1-12, or were they New World “wise men”The phrase “tidings of great joy” is taken from Luke 2:10.

Helaman 16:15-16 The unbelieving people became more hardened and scoffed at the prophecies – saying the “so-called” prophets may have gotten lucky on some things. 

Helaman 16:17 The words “began to reason” are in Luke 5:21.

Helaman 16:18 They contended “That it is not reasonable that such a being as a Christ shall come; if so, and he be the Son of God, the Father of heaven and of earth, as it has been spoken, why will he not show himself unto us as well as unto them who shall be at Jerusalem?”  They did not buy the idea that Christ is both the Son and the Father.  The words “be the Son of God” are in Matthew 4:3 and, “be at Jerusalem” are in Acts 20:16.

Helaman 16:19 “Yea, why will he not show himself as well as in the land of Jerusalem?  Why would he be born in Jerusalem instead of in the New World?  For that reason, they concluded that they would not be able to verify the prophet’s words. 

Helaman 16:20-21 They claimed it was a wicked tradition from their ancestors about a land far away.  It is just a plot by the devil and men to control the people and keep them in ignorance. 

Helaman 16:20 The words “that we should believe” are in 1 John 3:23 and, “up in their hearts” are in Luke 1:66.

Helaman 16:21 In the 1830 edition page 451 it read “we depend upon them for to teach us the word.”  In later editions the word forwas deleted. 

Helaman 16:22 “And many more things did the people imagine up in their hearts, which were foolish and vain; and they were much disturbed, for Satan did stir them up to do iniquity continually; yea, he did go about spreading rumors and contentions upon all the face of the land, that he might harden the hearts of the people against that which was good and against that which should come.” 

Helaman 16:23 “And notwithstanding the signs and the wonders which were wrought among the people of the Lord, and the many miracles which they did, Satan did get great hold upon the hearts of the people upon all the face of the land.”  The phrase “wrought among the people” is in Acts 5:12 and, “many miracles” is in John 12:37.

Helaman 16:24 So, they were completely unprepared for the birth of Jesus, which according to the Book of Mormon prophecy was scheduled to occur in the next year or so.

Helaman 16:25 “And thus ended the book of Helaman, according to the record of Helaman and his sons.” 

This concludes our study for today.  Please subscribe, so you will not miss any of the future episodes.  You can also catch us on YouTube, Apple podcast, and Goggle podcast.  Or, you can go to our website at Talking to Mormons.com – where you can download this script and learn much more.

Remember, Jesus is enough! 

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Come Follow Me Schedule - 2020

Oct 12-18
3 Nephi 20-26
Oct 19-25
3 Nephi 27 – 4 Nephi
Oct 26 – Nov 1
Mormon 1-6