Sunday, December 5, 2010

1 Nephi 7-14

I need to catch my blog up to where I am currently in my journey through the BOM. I started from the beginning again on the 1st of December, as a part of a challenge I gave to not only myself but to the young women I teach to finish the book of Mormon before Emma is due. We have a reading schedule, READ THE BOOK OF MORMON IN 90 DAYS, and we are each reading the same chapters each day. I decided this would be a good opportunity to start up my blog again. I may not blog each day but I'll keep it fairly updated.

Chapter 7
Nephi and his brothers are asked by their father to go to Jerusalem again to find this man named Ishmael and his family, and to bring them back with them to the wilderness. After they had the family and were traveling back into the wilderness, Laman and Lemuel and some of Ishmael's family also started to rebel. I just love how passionate Nephi is in speaking to his brothers about faith in the Lord... He says,
... How is it that ye have not hearkened unto the word of the Lord? How is it that ye have forgotten that ye have seen an angel of the Lord? Yea, and how is it that ye have forgotten what great things the Lord hath done for us, in delivering us out of the hands of Laban... and how is it that ye have forgotten that the lord is able to do all things according to his will, for the children of men, if it so be that they exercise faith in them? Wherefore, let us be faithful to him. (to read his entire speech, read Nephi ch 7:8-15)
I love this. I think that in hard times, we should all read that right there. Don't we all have moments like Laman and Lemuel, where we forget the things we have seen, the revelations we have had, the miracles which have entered into our lives? 
Then it goes on to say that not only were the brothers not moved by his speech, but they were angered by it! They tried to Kill Nephi!! When finally Ishmael's family told them to stop, and they did, and then they begged for forgiveness from Nephi... and Nephi, being so amazing, forgave them on the spot, without hesitation! All he asked was that they repent and ask the Lord for forgiveness, which they did.

Chapter 8
Lehi, Nephi's father, had a vision. It seems very complicated, but as I've heard it explained before I will write now.
Lehi is walking through a forest of darkness for hours upon hours. He begs the lord to help him, to have mercy on his soul, when the lord reveals a large field. There is a tree, with amazing fruit, the best tasting fruit you've ever tasted, and the fruit is white, pure white beyond white. Then he sees his wife, and two of his sons, Sam and Nephi. He begs for them to come over and eat some of the fruit with him, and they do find their way to him. He looks around for Laman and Lemuel, when he sees that there is a mist covering the land, with a rod of iron and a narrow path leading to the tree with the fruit out of the darkness. Laman and Lemuel do not come to their father. Instead, they find their way to a large building that seems to be away from all that is the good of this tree. Those who occupy the building are mocking and pointing at and scorning those who have taken the fruit of the awesome tree. Some people find and grab hold of the rod, and make it to the tree where they eat the fruit and ignore the people from the large building. Some make it to the tree, and become ashamed of eating the fruit because of those who are pointing and mocking, and fall away into the darkness and the mist.
From my understanding, the Tree is the Tree of Life. The rod is the word of Christ, his teachings. The building is that of the world, the influence that the world has over so many of us. The mist and darkness is this world, where we wander in search of truth and light, search for a bigger purpose or meaning, until we find and come unto Christ. Even then we have to hold on to the rod, to follow his teachings, otherwise we can lose our faith and fall back into the darkness.

Chapter 9
Nephi explains that his records will be of his people, of kings, and of wars among his people. That god has a plan and a message in these records.

Chapter 10
Lehi tells about events leading up to Christ, how the Jews will be captive, and about Jesus' baptism in the river Jordan. Then about their doubt in him and his death. This chapter is a very quick and brief description of the bible concerning Jesus Christ... Nephi prays to have visions as his father Lehi does.
And I love this scripture:
Nephi 10:19 For he that diligently seeketh shall find; and the mysteries of God shall be unfolded unto them, by the power of the Holy Ghost..

Chapter 11
Nephi is taken to a high mountain top, where he and an angel converse. He tells the angel that he wants to see what his father saw, and the angel shows him the tree of life. Nephi says it is beautiful beyond all beauty. Then he sees the Savior come down from the sky, and the Angel tells Nephi to bare record that this is the Savior. Nephi asks for an interpretation of the visions. He is shown the virgin who gives birth to the Savior, the son of God. Then he is shown that the tree is the tree of life, and that the rod is the word of God, and the tree is a sign of God's love. Nephi then sees the baptism of the Savior, and sees the good works done by the Savior in his time on earth. Then he witnesses the Savior's crucifixion.He was shown that the big building that had been in his father's vision was the pride of the world. He was told that the pride of the world would bring doom to the world.

Chapter 12
Nephi's vision continues into his own posterity. His children, and children's children, and so on for three and four generations are righteous, and fight with the posterity of his brothers. They have wars and more wars. Nephi is shown that the murky waters in his father's vision are the depths of "hell" and that the darkness represents temptations of satan, things of this world (from my perspective, greed, pride, etc) He watches as generations go by and as the people fall away from God, that they become "filthy" and full of idleness (I'm guessing they are lazy!)

Chapter 13
For such a lengthy chapter, I felt like I read the same message over and over several times. Here's what I got from it in my overly tired state:
Nephi continues in his vision. He sees a great church rise up, one filled with worldly things, fine linens, gold, silver, harlots, etc. and he is told that this church is the church brought forth by Satan. That the members who belong to this church will persecute those who belong to the right and true church of God. They have a book which has had many truths removed from it. One day the Lamb of God will establish his true church and provide and teach once again those truths which were removed.

Chapter 14
More about the great and abominable church of the devil, and the Angel points out that there are only two churches: The church of the Lamb Of God, and the other, the church of the devil. He says that if you do not belong to the church of the lamb, you belong to the other. And even though there are only two churches, the "other" church has many nations, and they fight amongst each other. And when the church of the Lamb is attacked, it is protected by God and those who are in it are armed with righteousness. Nephi is then carried on in the spirit, seeing all of the things which is father, Lehi, had seen.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Blog Fail!

Sorry for not updating, I've been reading out of order!

I'll be getting back to Nephi hopefully later this week.

Friday, March 5, 2010

1 Nephi: 4 -6

1 Nephi Chapter 4:

So where we left off yesterday Laman, Lemuel, Nephi, and Sam were hiding behind a rock or something like that.

Ok Chapter starts out with Nephi convincing his brothers that because they all saw the Angel they should go back again for the plates. Nephi ends up going alone, and finds Laban all drunk and stumbling around. Long story short, Nephi is convinced by the spirit of the Lord to Kill Laban in order to "save a nation." Then Nephi dresses in Laban's clothes, finds Laban's servant and gets the plates that he was after. Then he takes the servant with him to his brothers, and convinces him to flee with them into the wilderness to be free, and he does. (Servant's name: Zoram)

I don't like this chapter for one gigantic reason: Nephi has to kill Laban! Booooooo! He could have just knocked him out or something. I just really don't like it when people have to kill other people.

1 Nephi Chapter 5

Meanwhile back at the tent (hehehe) Lehi and mother (Sariah) had stayed back at the tent in the wilderness. Sariah had been complaining to Lehi that he was wrong and that her sons were all dead and that they were going to die in the wilderness, and so on, worried and complaining. Then her sons return home and she rejoices! And then believes that the Lord had in fact commanded Lehi to send his sons to get the plates, and that the Lord had protected her family.

Then Lehi goes through the plates, (5 books of Moses, the creation, Adam and Eve, their geneology relating them to Joseph, son of Jacob [Jenny, this is the Joseph you were talking about, yes? the one sold as a slave by his brothers..]) and is totally psyched to see all of the records, and he's super uber happy.

1 Nephi Chapter 6

Nephi writes that he won't be copying the plates of his Father into this book, and that it should be enough to say he is a descendant of Joseph and also... that he will write only those things which are important to the Lord.
I find chapter 6 somewhat unnecessary. huh...

Thursday, March 4, 2010

1 Nephi: 3

Basically I didn't read yesterday, Boooooooooo. I know. I could give an excuse, but excuses are never good.

Today I read 1 Nephi chapter 3:

After Nephi wakes up from his nap or vision or whatever, he goes to see his Dad, Lehi. Lehi tells Nephi to please go back to Jerusalem to get these engraved plates from a guy called Laban. They contain their families genealogy and some other records. So Nephi and his brothers (Laman and Lemuel and I think Sam also, though it doesn't actually mention Sam by name, in some of the verses Nephi says "unto us, their younger brothers") go up to Jerusalem to find Laban and get these brass plates.

At first they send Laman to go up to Laban's house (confusing, all these names.) and ask for the plates back, and Laban of course calls him a thief and sends him away. Then Nephi decides they will gather their families gold, and silver, and other things to "buy" the plates from Laban, but Laban is greedy and decided to try to kill Nephi, Laman, Lemuel, and Sam instead so he could just take these riches and not have to give them anything.

THEN, they all run away and hide in the wilderness under a rock or something, and Laman and Lemuel start to beat up their little brothers Nephi and Sam, and then an Angel comes down to them and reprimands them, saying (basically) "Don't beat him up, he is going to rule over you one day!" and also that they lord would deliver Laban into their hands.

Stay tuned, next chapter tomorrow. :)

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

1 Nephi: 1 - 2

1 Nephi Chapter 1:

Firstly, what stood out to me was that when Lehi saw what I think to be the Lord Jesus, he was not alone, but followed by 12 others. What is the significance of the number 12 I wonder? Why is this so important in dealings with the lord?

Basically what I understand to have happened in Nephi chapter 1 is this:

Nephi starts his records of his father and their family. Lehi lives in Jerusalem, where he prayed to the Lord with all his heart. He saw a pillar of fire, but I'm not sure why. Then he goes on to have a vision of heaven, where he sees God and again, who I think to be Jesus Christ and 12 others. (Maybe his apostles?) Jesus was bright like the sun and the moon, while the others were only as bright as the stars. During his vision, he receives a book (maybe the bible?) where he learns that Jerusalem is going to be destroyed. He then goes around telling everyone about what he saw, and the Jewish people mock him and think he's totally nuts. And they wanted to kill him, I guess? But the Lord saves him.

Nephi Chapter 2:

This chapter starts out with Lehi taking his family out into what is referred to as "the wilderness." They leave behind all of their belongings, gold, silver, and everything else. Because of this, Laman and Lemuel are bitter, and don't believe in their father's words. Nephi and Sam do believe, and Nephi starts to have visions of his own of the Lord.  The Lord threatens, to Nephi, of his brother's wrongdoing and threatens that if they do continue to murmur then their seed will be cursed also.

That's all for today.

See you tomorrow!

Reading Scriptures

I've decided to start blogging about what I read in the scriptures daily, what I understand and don't understand.