This book skips forward hundreds of years after Christ’s birth, to the almost total destruction of the Nephite nation. Mormon has the records now, and is ready to deliver them up to his son, Moroni, but adds this section in to connect the plates of Nephi with his abridgement of the rest of the record from King Benjamin to his day.
He says he will take these plates, “which contain these prophesyings and revelations, and put them with the remainder of my record, for they are choice unto me; and I know they will be choice unto my brethren. (6) And I do this for a wise purpose; for thus it whispereth me, according to the workings of the Spirit of the Lord which is in me. And now, I do not know all things; but the Lord knoweth all things which are to come; wherefore, he worketh in me to do according to his will.” (7)
I love Mormon’s faith. He felt prompted to put Nephi’s small record in with his own abridgement, and he did it, though he didn’t understand the why behind the command. But he trusted implicitly that God knew all things and would work in him to do according to His holy will.
- How can I trust better, like Mormon?
- Do I act quickly on promptings I receive from the Holy Ghost, or do I let doubts and fear get in the way of faithful action?
Mormon’s purpose in keeping these plates is set forth.
And my prayer to God is concerning my brethren, that they may once again come to the knowledge of God, yea, the redemption of Christ; that they may once again be a delightsome people.”Words of Mormon 1:8
His concern is for his brethren, not himself. Even though Mormon and his son have been on the run from their enemy, who is trying to wipe them off the face of the earth, they had an eternal perspective and hoped that their words they had written—their prophesies about Christ—would help their brethren later on. He hoped it would make his enemy a delightsome people.
Knowing God and partaking of His redemption makes us a delightsome people…pleasing, fair, cheerful, happy, joyful.
Now, Mormon tells how the records have come to be in his hands. Amaleki passed them onto King Benjamin, who passed them on down through the generations until they came to him.
And I, Mormon, pray to God that they may be preserved from this time henceforth. And I know that they will be preserved; for there are great things written upon them, out of which my people and their brethren shall be judged at the great and last day, according to the word of God, which is written.”Words of Mormon 1:11
We will be judged out of the contents of the Book of Mormon. The more we study and learn from its pages, the better off we will be when we stand before God at the last day.
King Benjamin had troubles in his day, but he fought right along with his people with the sword of Laban. This is the key to fighting Satan’s followers.
And in the strength of the Lord they did contend against their enemies.”Words of Mormon 1:14
God strengthens us when we follow Him. If we rebel, we become weak like everyone else.
To establish peace in the land after war and clear up doctrinal issues that had come about during the war, Benjamin, along with many other holy men, labored “with all the might of his body and the faculty of his whole soul…did once more establish peace in the land.” (18)
It sounds as if he wore his body and spirit out to bring peace to his people. Just because God tells us to preach His gospel and establish peace in our sphere of influence doesn’t mean it will be easy. We will wear out our physical bodies and experience mental and spiritual anguish for those we love as we strive to help them repent and turn again unto the Lord, so they can have peace and joy.
- Are we willing to labor with all the might of our bodies and the faculty of our whole souls?
God has a wise purpose for each of us—a mission He wants us to accomplish in this life.
- Will we labor diligently to seek out this wise purpose from Him?
- Even if we don’t understand all the whys behind God’s commands, will we wear ourselves out to accomplish His works, trusting that He knows all and will work out our salvation as we follow Him?