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|Dan Jones Awakens Wales -by Clark Kelley Price|
Native Welshman, Dan Jones was baptized into the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day in January 1843 while living in the Nauvoo, Illinois area (U.S.A.). He served several missions to his native Wales. Presiding over the mission there he was able to help bring about the baptisms of thousands of his former countrymen. It was said that when he was released from his assignment as leader of the Wales Mission that one out of every 272 people in relatively small Wales had become members of the LDS Church.
In the painting above, Dan is shown holding his key missionary tool up high in his left hand so all can see. It is:
The Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ
The Prophet Mormon living in ancient Central America in about 400 to 421 A.D. knew full-well that the book he was writing (abridging-condensing) would be a very key part of the Lord's work in the latter days (our time on earth) in effectively preparing a people for the Second Coming of the Lord, Jesus Christ whose coming will begin the long-promised and awaited (By the Faithful) Thousand Year Millennium.
I'm focusing today on one very significant set of explanatory comments made by Mormon which are found relatively early on in the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ.
Now, I'll give you the helpful opportunity below of reading and listening to the "The Words of Mormon" for which I've provided for you to listen to and read on your computer screen.
Afterwards I've determined to print ten verses of that short book, which will allow me to then emphasize and clarify key points the Prophet Mormon makes in them.
The Words of Mormon, Chapter One
THE WORDS OF MORMON A.D. 385
1 AND now I, Mormon, being about to deliver up the record which I have been making into the hands of my son Moroni, behold I have witnessed almost all the destruction of my people, the Nephites.
2 And it is many hundred years after the coming of Christ that I deliver these records into the hands of my son; and it supposeth me that he (Moroni) will witness the entire destruction of my people. But may God grant that he may survive them, that he may write somewhat concerning them, and somewhat concerning Christ, that perhaps some day it may profit them.
3 And now, I speak somewhat concerning that which I have written; for after I had made an abridgment from the plates of Nephi, down to the reign of this king Benjamin, (It is my, Neil Birch's, opinion that Mormon started his abridgement of the writings of the Nephite prophets from the time of his own life, then going backwards in time until coming to the earliest records of his Nephite people) of whom Amaleki spake, I searched among the records which had been delivered into my hands, and I found these plates, which contained this small account of the prophets, from Jacob down to the reign of this king Benjamin, and also many of the words of Nephi.
4 And the things which are upon these plates pleasing me, because of the prophecies of the coming of Christ; and my fathers knowing that many of them have been fulfilled; yea, and I also know that as many things as have been prophesied concerning us down to this day have been fulfilled, and as many as go beyond this day must surely come to pass—
5 Wherefore, I chose these things, to finish my record upon them, which remainder of my record I shall take from the plates of Nephi; (I, Neil, believe those plates Mormon just mentioned are the Large plates of Nephi), and I cannot write the hundredth part of the things of my people.
6 But behold, I shall take these plates, (Small plates of Nephi) 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. (The Lamanites of our Day)
7 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.
8 And my prayer to God is concerning my brethren, (Mormon's brethren would be the Lamanites (American Indians of both North, Central and South America) of our modern day who he knows will be a mixture of his people, the Nephites and also the Lamanites - relatives of theirs - and also of the Gentiles) 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.
9 And now I, Mormon, proceed to finish out my record, (Mormon was, I believe, referring to the continuation of the abridgement of the Large Plates of Nephi) which I take from the plates of Nephi and I make it according to the knowledge and the understanding which God has given me.
10 Wherefore, it came to pass that after Amaleki had delivered up these plates (the Small plates of Nephi) into the hands of king Benjamin, he took them and put them with the other plates, which contained records which had been handed down by the kings, from generation to generation until the days of king Benjamin.
(I, Neil Birch, now insert this explanation of the special value of these small plates of Nephi, Mormon mentions):
Jacob 1: 2 And he (Nephi, son of Lehi, Jacob's brother) gave me, Jacob, a commandment that I should write upon these plates a few of the things which I considered to be most precious; that I should not touch, save it were lightly, concerning the history of this people which are called the people of Nephi.
3 For he said the history of his people should be engraven upon his other plates, and that I should preserve these plates and hand them down unto my seed, from generation to generation.
4 And if there were preaching which was sacred, or revelation which was great, or prophesying, that I should engraven the heads of them upon these plates, and touch upon them as much as it were possible, for Christ's sake, and for the sake of our people. (clarification and emphasis added)What eventually happened was that after having completed the translation of 116 manuscript pages of the Book of Mormon that he, Joseph Smith, had been making with the Lord's guidance and with the assistance of several different scribes, (one at a time), beginning in the large plates of Nephi from the earliest date in the Book of Mormon 600 B.C. and going to the time just before the reign of the Nephite king Benjamin in about between about 279 and 130 B.C., Martin Harris, a friend and close associate of the Prophet Joseph Smith asked Joseph's (or rather the Lord's) permission to show those 116 manuscript pages to his (Martin's) wife who evidently doubted that Joseph Smith was actually translating an ancient book.
11 And they were handed down from king Benjamin, from generation to generation until they have fallen into my hands. 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, (those small plates of Nephi) 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. (Now it is apparent to me, Neil Birch, author of this Blog, that which Mormon is telling us in these following verses: 12 through 18, is that he, (Mormon) was writing in the way of abridgement of the large plates of Nephi. I suggest then that the following verses of The Words of Mormon are a continuation of Mormon's abridgement of the Large Plates of Nephi) and are actually the very last of that abridgement that would appear in the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ because of something that occurred during Joseph Smith's translation which you will learn of before long here.)
12 And now, concerning this king Benjamin—he had somewhat of contentions among his own people.
13 And it came to pass also that the armies of the Lamanites came down out of the land of Nephi, to battle against his people. But behold, king Benjamin gathered together his armies, and he did stand against them; and he did fight with the strength of his own arm, with the sword of Laban.
14 And in the strength of the Lord they did contend against their enemies, until they had slain many thousands of the Lamanites. And it came to pass that they did contend against the Lamanites until they had driven them out of all the lands of their inheritance.
15 And it came to pass that after there had been false Christs, and their mouths had been shut, and they punished according to their crimes;
16 And after there had been false prophets, and false preachers and teachers among the people, and all these having been punished according to their crimes; and after there having been much contention and many dissensions away unto the Lamanites, behold, it came to pass that king Benjamin, with the assistance of the holy prophets who were among his people—
17 For behold, king Benjamin was a holy man, and he did reign over his people in righteousness; and there were many holy men in the land, and they did speak the word of God with power and with authority; and they did use much sharpness because of the stiffneckedness of the people—
18 Wherefore, with the help of these, king Benjamin, by laboring with all the might of his body and the faculty of his whole soul, and also the prophets, did once more establish peace in the land. (emphasis and clarification Added)Those 116 manuscript pages were referred to by those close to Joseph Smith at that time as the "Book of Lehi." It was an abridgement or condensation by the Prophet Mormon from the Large Plates of Nephi of the Nephite record from Lehi's day down through the Nephite prophet, Omni's day. It never became a part of the Book of Mormon that Joseph Smith published.
The LDS Church history shows that at first, the Lord denied Joseph's allowing those 116 manuscript pages to be shown to Martin Harris' wife. After Joseph plead three times to the Lord for them to be shown as Martin Harris desired, the Lord gave His permission.
In the course of time it was found that Martin Harris was unable to retrieve those 116 manuscript pages, or what was known to be the translation of the Book of Lehi from the Large Plates of Nephi. You can now read and listen to what the Lord told Joseph Smith in a revelation which is found in the Doctrine and Covenants of the LDS Church, regarding this matter:
D. and C. 10: 1-70
You now should understand why the Prophet Mormon did as he was prompted to do many centuries ago through the Spirit of Prophecy and Revelation as he explains in these 2 verses I quote again from above:
Words of Mormon 6 But behold, I shall take these plates, (The small plates of Nephi) 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. (The Lamanites of our Day)
7 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. (clarification and emphasis added)I would now like you to view paintings of various events that are described in the first part of the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ which we now know came from the Small Plates of Nephi, the specially inspirational parts of that section of the inspired Book:
The Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ
Lehi's Dream of the Tree of Life -by Jerry Thompson
Examining the Liahona Which Will Guide Them on Their Journey. It was Found in the Morning Outside Lehi's Tent. -by Arnold Friberg
Lehi and His People Arrive at the Promised Land (Central America) -by Arnold Friberg
|And My Soul Hungered -by Al R.Young|
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