Chapter 2

  1. And now I, Nephi, do not give the genealogy of my fathers in this part of my record, neither at any time shall I give it after upon these plates which I am writing, for it is given in the record which has been kept by my father, wherefore, I do not write it in this work. For it sufficeth me to say that we are a descendant of Joseph. And it mattereth not to me that I am particular to give a full account of all the things of my father for they cannot be written upon these plates, for I desire the room that I may write of the things of God. For the fullness of mine intent is that I may persuade men to come unto the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob and be saved. Wherefore, the things which are pleasing unto the world I do not write, but the things which are pleasing unto God and unto those who are not of the world. Wherefore, I shall give commandment unto my seed that they shall not occupy these plates with things which are not of worth unto the children of men.
  2. And now I would that ye might know that after my father Lehi had made an end of prophesying concerning his seed, it came to pass that the Lord spake unto him again, that it was not meet for him, Lehi, that he should take his family into the wilderness alone, but that his sons should take daughters to wife that they might raise up seed unto the Lord in the land of promise. And it came to pass that the Lord commanded him that I, Nephi, and my brethren should again return into the land of Jerusalem and bring down Ishmael and his family into the wilderness. And it came to pass that I, Nephi, did again, with my brethren, go forth into the wilderness to go up to Jerusalem. And it came to pass that we went up unto the house of Ishmael, and we did gain favor in the sight of Ishmael insomuch that we did speak unto him the words of the Lord. And it came to pass that the Lord did soften the heart of Ishmael and also his whole household, insomuch that they took their journey with us down into the wilderness to the tent of our father.
  3. And it came to pass that as we journeyed in the wilderness, behold, Laman and Lemuel and two of the daughters of Ishmael and the two sons of Ishmael and their families did rebel against us, yea, against I, Nephi, and Sam and their father Ishmael and his wife and his three other daughters. And it came to pass that in the which rebellion they were desirous to return unto the land of Jerusalem. And now I, Nephi, being grieved for the hardness of their hearts, therefore I spake unto them, saying, yea, even unto Laman and unto Lemuel, Behold, ye are mine elder brethren, and how is it that ye are so hard in your hearts and so blind in your minds that ye have need that I, your younger brother, should speak unto you, yea, and set an example for you? 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 also that we should obtain the record? Yea, 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 him? Wherefore, let us be faithful to him. And if it so be that we are faithful to him, we shall obtain the land of promise, and ye shall know at some future period that the word of the Lord shall be fulfilled concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, for all things which the Lord hath spoken concerning the destruction of Jerusalem must be fulfilled. For behold, the Spirit of the Lord ceaseth soon to strive with them, for behold, they have rejected the prophets and Jeremiah have they cast into prison. And they have sought to take away the life of my father insomuch that they have driven him out of the land. Now behold, I say unto you that if ye will return unto Jerusalem, ye shall also perish with them. And now if ye have choice, go up to the land and remember the words which I speak unto you, that if ye go, ye will also perish, for thus the spirit of the Lord constraineth me that I should speak.
  4. And it came to pass that when I, Nephi, had spoken these words unto my brethren they were angry with me. And it came to pass that they did lay their hands upon me, for behold, they were exceeding wroth, and they did bind me with cords for they sought to take away my life that they might leave me in the wilderness to be devoured by wild beasts. But it came to pass that I prayed unto the Lord, saying, O Lord, according to my faith which is in thee, wilt thou deliver me from the hands of my brethren, yea, even give me strength that I may burst these bands with which I am bound? And it came to pass that when I had said these words, behold, the bands were loosed from off my hands and feet, and I stood before my brethren and I spake unto them again. And it came to pass that they were angry with me again and sought to lay hands upon me. But behold, one of the daughters of Ishmael, yea, and also her mother and one of the sons of Ishmael did plead with my brethren, insomuch that they did soften their hearts and they did cease striving to take away my life. And it came to pass that they were sorrowful because of their wickedness, insomuch that they did bow down before me and did plead with me that I would forgive them of the thing that they had done against me. And it came to pass that I did frankly forgive them all that they had done, and I did exhort them that they would pray unto the Lord their God for forgiveness. And it came to pass that they did so. And after they had done praying unto the Lord we did again travel on our journey towards the tent of our father.
  5. And it came to pass that we did come down unto the tent of our father. And after I and my brethren and all the house of Ishmael had come down unto the tent of my father, they did give thanks unto the Lord their God and they did offer sacrifice and burnt offerings unto him.
  6. And it came to pass that we had gathered together all manner of seeds of every kind, both of grain of every kind and also of the seeds of fruits of every kind.
  7. And it came to pass that while my father tarried in the wilderness he spake unto us, saying, Behold, I have dreamed a dream, or in other words, I have seen a vision. And behold, because of the thing which I have seen I have reason to rejoice in the Lord because of Nephi and also of Sam, for I have reason to suppose that they and also many of their seed will be saved. But behold, Laman and Lemuel, I fear exceedingly because of you. For behold, methought I saw in my dream a dark and dreary wilderness. And it came to pass that I saw a man and he was dressed in a white robe and he came and stood before me. And it came to pass that he spake unto me and bade me follow him. And it came to pass that I followed him, and after I had followed him, I beheld myself that I was in a dark and dreary waste. And after I had traveled for the space of many hours in darkness I began to pray unto the Lord that he would have mercy on me according to the multitude of his tender mercies.
  8. And it came to pass that after I had prayed unto the Lord, I beheld a large and spacious field. And it came to pass that I beheld a tree whose fruit was desirable to make one happy. And it came to pass that I did go forth and partake of the fruit thereof, and beheld that it was most sweet above all that I ever before tasted. Yea, and I beheld that the fruit thereof was white to exceed all the whiteness that I had ever seen.
  9. And as I partook of the fruit thereof, it filled my soul with exceeding great joy; Wherefore, I began to be desirous that my family should partake of it also, for I knew that it was desirable above all other fruit. And as I cast my eyes around about that perhaps I might discover my family also, and I beheld a river of water, and it ran along, and it was near the tree of which I was partaking the fruit. And I looked to behold from whence it came, and I saw the head thereof a little way off, and at the head thereof I beheld your mother Sariah and Sam and Nephi, and they stood as if they knew not whither they should go. And it came to pass that I beckoned unto them, and I also did say unto them with a loud voice that they should come unto me and partake of the fruit which was desirable above all other fruit. And it came to pass that they did come unto me and partake of the fruit also. And it came to pass that I was desirous that Laman and Lemuel should come and partake of the fruit also; wherefore, I cast mine eyes towards the head of the river, that perhaps I might see them. And it came to pass that I saw them, but they would not come unto me, and partake of the fruit.
  10. And I beheld a rod of iron, and it extended along the bank of the river and led to the tree by which I stood. And I also beheld a straight and narrow path, which came along by the rod of iron even to the tree by which I stood; and it also led by the head of the fountain unto a large and spacious field as if it had been a world. And I saw numberless concourses of people, many of whom were pressing forward that they might obtain the path which led unto the tree by which I stood. And it came to pass that they did come forth and commence in the path which led to the tree. And it came to pass that there arose a mist of darkness, yea, even an exceeding great mist of darkness, insomuch that they who had commenced in the path did lose their way, that they wandered off and were lost. And it came to pass that I beheld others pressing forward, and they came forth and caught hold of the end of the rod of iron and they did press forward through the mists of darkness, clinging to the rod of iron even until they did come forth and partook of the fruit of the tree. And after they had partaken of the fruit of the tree they did cast their eyes about as if they were ashamed.
  11. And I also cast my eyes around about and beheld, on the other side of the river of water, a great and spacious building, and it stood as it were in the air, high above the earth. And it was filled with people, both old and young, both male and female, and their manner of dress was exceeding fine, and they were in the attitude of mocking and pointing their fingers towards those who had come up and were partaking of the fruit. And after they had tasted of the fruit they were ashamed because of those that were scoffing at them; and they fell away into forbidden paths and were lost.
  12. And now I, Nephi, do not speak all the words of my father. But to be short in writing, behold, he saw other multitudes pressing forward; and they came and caught hold of the end of the rod of iron. And they did press their way forward continually holding fast to the rod of iron until they came forth and fell down and partook of the fruit of the tree. And he also saw other multitudes pressing their way towards that great and spacious building. And it came to pass that many were drowned in the depths of the fountain, and many were lost from his view, wandering in strange roads. And great was the multitude that did enter into that strange building. And after they did enter into that building they did point the finger of scorn at me and those that were partaking of the fruit also, but we heeded them not. Thus are the words of my father, for as many as heeded them, had fallen away, and Laman and Lemuel partook not of the fruit, said my father.
  13. And it came to pass after my father had spoken all the words of his dream or vision, which were many, he said unto us, because of these things which he saw in a vision, he exceedingly feared for Laman and Lemuel; yea, he feared lest they should be cast off from the presence of the Lord. And he did exhort them then with all the feeling of a tender parent that they would hearken to his words in that perhaps the Lord would be merciful to them and not cast them off; yea, my father did preach unto them. And after he had preached unto them and also prophesied unto them of many things, he bade them to keep the commandments of the Lord; and he did cease speaking unto them. And all these things did my father see and hear and speak as he dwelt in a tent in the valley of Lemuel, and also a great many more things which cannot be written upon these plates.
  14. And now, as I have spoken concerning these plates, behold, they are not the plates upon which I make a full account of the history of my people; for the plates upon which I make a full account of my people I have given the name of Nephi. Wherefore, they are called the plates of Nephi after mine own name; and these plates also are called the plates of Nephi. Nevertheless, I have received a commandment of the Lord that I should make these plates for the special purpose that there should be an account engraven of the ministry of my people, and upon the other plates should be engraven an account of the reigns of the kings and the wars and contentions of my people; wherefore, these plates are for the more part of the ministry and the other plates are for the more part of the reigns of the kings and the wars and contentions of my people. Wherefore, the Lord hath commanded me to make these plates for a wise purpose in him, which purpose I know not. But the Lord knoweth all things from the beginning; wherefore, he prepareth a way to accomplish all his works among the children of men; for behold, he hath all power unto the fulfilling of all his words. And thus it is. Amen.






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