Book of Mormon Notes– How deep can you dig?

2011, February 6

“Book of Mormon | Jarom: Nothing to Add?” by grego

Book of Mormon | Jarom: Nothing to Add?

grego
(c)2011

Another straggler here…

So, the whole book of Jarom is 15 verses, and it’s a little interesting. I’ll particularly mention this part of verse 2:
“…but I shall not write the things of my prophesying, nor of my revelations. For what could I write more than my fathers have written? For have not they revealed the plan of salvation? I say unto you, Yea; and this sufficeth me.”

Jarom is obviously a man who has prophesied and had revelations, and knows others in similar situations; yet, he has nothing to add to the plates. (If that were the case, Mosiah on would be gone!)

Or does he? I think he does, but he purposefully leaves it out for a few reasons:
1. He’s probably thinking about the purpose of the writing (genealogy=done, for the Lamanites=can’t think of what I could add).
2. There isn’t much space left on the plates.
3. Lehi, Nephi, and Jacob did a really good job explaining the plan of salvation; isn’t an understanding of the plan of salvation all that is really needed? Perhaps Jarom wants readers to understand the importance of the plan, and that it is the essence of the gospel. (The missionary discussions are pretty much all one needs…)
4. He stresses the harshness of the spiritual condition his people were under—something that does not usually lend to ponderous insights into the gospel. And yet, he still leaves a very succinct summary of his time (one of the best in the Book of Mormon, in my opinion) and still adds many nuggets to the book.

It makes me ponder a little more on the bare necessities of the gospel, and the blessings of having much more than the bare necessities.

-=
Jarom 1:1 Now behold, I, Jarom, write a few words according to the commandment of my father, Enos, that our genealogy may be kept.
2 And as these plates are small, and as these things are written for the intent of the benefit of our brethren the Lamanites, wherefore, it must needs be that I write a little; but I shall not write the things of my prophesying, nor of my revelations. For what could I write more than my fathers have written? For have not they revealed the plan of salvation? I say unto you, Yea; and this sufficeth me.
3 Behold, it is expedient that much should be done among this people, because of the hardness of their hearts, and the deafness of their ears, and the blindness of their minds, and the stiffness of their necks; nevertheless, God is exceedingly merciful unto them, and has not as yet swept them off from the face of the land.
4 And there are many among us who have many revelations, for they are not all stiffnecked. And as many as are not stiffnecked and have faith, have communion with the Holy Spirit, which maketh manifest unto the children of men, according to their faith.
5 And now, behold, two hundred years had passed away, and the people of Nephi had waxed strong in the land. They observed to keep the law of Moses and the sabbath day holy unto the Lord. And they profaned not; neither did they blaspheme. And the laws of the land were exceedingly strict.
6 And they were scattered upon much of the face of the land, and the Lamanites also. And they were exceedingly more numerous than were they of the Nephites; and they loved murder and would drink the blood of beasts.
7 And it came to pass that they came many times against us, the Nephites, to battle. But our kings and our leaders were mighty men in the faith of the Lord; and they taught the people the ways of the Lord; wherefore, we withstood the Lamanites and swept them away out of our lands, and began to fortify our cities, or whatsoever place of our inheritance.
8 And we multiplied exceedingly, and spread upon the face of the land, and became exceedingly rich in gold, and in silver, and in precious things, and in fine workmanship of wood, in buildings, and in machinery, and also in iron and copper, and brass and steel, making all manner of tools of every kind to till the ground, and weapons of war—yea, the sharp pointed arrow, and the quiver, and the dart, and the javelin, and all preparations for war.
9 And thus being prepared to meet the Lamanites, they did not prosper against us. But the word of the Lord was verified, which he spake unto our fathers, saying that: Inasmuch as ye will keep my commandments ye shall prosper in the land.
10 And it came to pass that the prophets of the Lord did threaten the people of Nephi, according to the word of God, that if they did not keep the commandments, but should fall into transgression, they should be destroyed from off the face of the land.
11 Wherefore, the prophets, and the priests, and the teachers, did labor diligently, exhorting with all long-suffering the people to diligence; teaching the law of Moses, and the intent for which it was given; persuading them to look forward unto the Messiah, and believe in him to come as though he already was. And after this manner did they teach them.
12 And it came to pass that by so doing they kept them from being destroyed upon the face of the land; for they did prick their hearts with the word, continually stirring them up unto repentance.
13 And it came to pass that two hundred and thirty and eight years had passed away—after the manner of wars, and contentions, and dissensions, for the space of much of the time.
14 And I, Jarom, do not write more, for the plates are small. But behold, my brethren, ye can go to the other plates of Nephi; for behold, upon them the records of our wars are engraven, according to the writings of the kings, or those which they caused to be written.
15 And I deliver these plates into the hands of my son Omni, that they may be kept according to the commandments of my fathers.

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2 Comments »

  1. In my opinion, Jarom’s reluctance to put himself to the trouble of writing his preaching and prophesying is a dangerous thing and this is part of what leads to the distressing brevity in the Book of Omni and culminates in the disturbing statement of Abinadom (Omni 1:11) that he knows of no revelation or prophecy except what has been written and that which is written is sufficient.

    After verse 11 it becomes evident that the Lord had to get the Nephites out of the terrible rut they were in.

    Comment by Michaela Stephens — 2011, March 4 @ 9:09 pm

  2. I believe Jarom was one of those who helped keep the Nephites from destruction, with his many prophesying and revelations. Come to think of it, I might personally understand his feelings, in some way—on my mission I was in pretty bad districts a few times (missionaries who broke many rules, had little desire to serve, weren’t trying, talked bad about/ looked down on other missionaries who “weren’t cool”, etc.), and notwithstanding having things to share, during testimony sharing time, I had no desire to share at all. Not that I was without sin, but…

    As I noted, I think it’s actually a nice little statement. I don’t think there is reluctance or hesitation, but a clearly intended decision, for good reasons. Hopefully, he was guided by the Spirit, so it would have not just been a good decision, but the right one.

    I agree with you about Abinadom, and I think it helps one see better: there is a difference between “not writing” for reasons, vs. “I have nothing to write”. And though he didn’t write what some might see as what he should have written… Jarom’s book, though lacking in many details and stories, is actually a very strong short book of summaries and principles.

    And seriously, there isn’t much space left on those plates!

    Comment by grego — 2011, March 9 @ 12:48 am


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