I. First Nephi – The Book of Mosiah
I Nephi having been born of goodly parents, therefore I make a record of my proceedings in my days. And it came to pass that the Lord commanded my father, even in a dream, that he should take his family and depart into the wilderness. And he departed into the wilderness, and traveled in the wilderness in the borders which are nearer the Red sea. (See Light From The Dust, Scott Facer Proctor & Maurine Jensen Proctor, Deseret Book 1993; Chapter 1)
And we did take our tents and depart across the river Laman and traveled for the space of four days, nearly a south-southeast direction keeping in the most fertile parts of the wilderness for the space of many days. 1 Nephi 1:1-2, 2:5
And we did again take our journey nearly eastward from that time forth. And we did sojourn for the space of many, yea, even eight years in the wilderness. And we did come to the land which we called Bountiful. And the Lord space unto me, saying: Thou shalt construct a ship that I may carry thy people across these waters. 1Nephi 17:1-5
After I had finished the ship, according to the word of the Lord, after we had all gone down into the ship, we did put forth into the sea and were driven forth before the wind towards the promised land. And after we had sailed for the space of many days we did arrive at the promised land; and we went forth upon the land, and did pitch our tents; and we did call it the promised land. 1 Nephi 18:4-23
And it came to pass that he (Lehi) died, and was buried.
Behold, it came to pass that I, Nephi, did cry much unto the Lord my God, because of the anger of my brethren, for they did seek to take away my life.
And it came to pass that the Lord did warn me, that I, Nephi, should depart from them and flee into the wilderness, and all those who would go with me. And all those who would go with me were those who believed in the warnings and the revelations of God; wherefore, they did hearken unto my words.
And we did take our tents and whatsoever things were possible for us, and did journey in the wilderness for the space of many days. And after we had journeyed for the space of many days we did pitch our tents. And my people would that we should call the name of the place Nephi; wherefore, we did call it Nephi. 2 Nephi 4:12, 5:1-7 (Naming cities after the name of the person who first possessed them was a Nephite custom – see Alma 8:7)
And thirty years had passed away from the time we left Jerusalem. And it came to pass that Nephi died. Jacob 1:12
Behold, I am Amaleki, the son of Abinadom. Behold, I will speak unto you somewhat concerning Mosiah, who was make king over the land of Zarahemla; for behold, he being warned of the Lord that he should flee out of the land of Nephi, and as many as would hearken unto the voice of the Lord should also depart out of the land with him, into the wilderness. (Abinadom was the son of Chemish who was the brother of Amoron who was the son of Omni who was the son of Jarom who was the son of Enos who was the son of Jacob who was the son of Lehi)
And it came to pass that he did according as the Lord had commanded him. And they departed out of the land into the wilderness, as many as would hearken unto the voice of the Lord; and they were led by many preachings and prophesyings. And they were admonished continually by the word of God; and they were led by the power of his arm, through the wilderness, until they came down into the land which is called the land of Zarahemla.
And they discovered a people, who were called the people of Zarahemla. Now, there was great rejoicing among the people of Zarahemla; and also Zarahemla did rejoice exceedingly, because the Lord had sent the people of Mosiah with the plates of brass which contained the record of the Jews. Behold, it came to pass that Mosiah discovered that the people of Zarahemla came out from Jerusalem at the time that Zedekiah, king of Judah, was carried away captive into Babylon. And they journeyed in the wilderness, and were brought by the hand of the Lord across the great waters, into the land where Mosiah discovered them; and they had dwelt there from that time forth. Omni 1:12-16 (The Mulekites settled and stayed generally where they had landed)
Behold, I Amaleki was born in the days of Mosiah; and I have lived to see his death; and Benjamin, his son, reigneth in his stead. And behold, I have seen, in the days of King Benjamin, a serious war and much bloodshed between the Nephites and the Lamanites. But behold, the Nephites did obtain much advantage over them; yea, insomuch that King Benjamin did drive them out of the land of Zarahemla.
And now I would speak somewhat concerning a certain number who went up into the wilderness to return to the land of Nephi; for there was a large number who were desirous to possess the land of their inheritance and I, Amaleki, had a brother, who also went with them; and I have not since known concerning them. Omni: 23, 27
And it came to pass that King Benjamin consecrated his son Mosiah to be a ruler and a king over his people. And it came to pass that after king Mosiah had had continual peace for the space of three years, he was desirous to know concerning the people who went up to dwell in the land of Lehi-Nephi, or in the city of Lehi-Nephi; for his people had heard nothing from them from the time they left the land of Zarahemla; therefore, they wearied him with their teasings.
And it came to pass that King Mosiah granted that sixteen of their strong men might go up to the land of Lehi-Nephi to inquire concerning their brethren.
And it came to pass that on the morrow they started to go up, having with them one Ammon, he being a strong and mighty man, and a descendant of Zarahemla; and he was also their leader. And now, they knew not the course they should travel in the wilderness to go up to the land of Lehi-Nephi; (Why didn’t they? Zeniff and the first company of Nephites had already gone to the Land of Nephi a number of times and returned) therefore they wandered many days in the wilderness, even forty days did they wander. (Was this a number or a symbol for a long time?)
And when they had wandered forty days they came to a hill, which is north of the land of Shilom, and there they pitched their tents.
And Ammon took three of his brethren, (Why did Ammon take only three?) and they went down (Do the words “went down” here mean that they went south or did they go down in elevation?) into the land of Nephi. And behold, they met the King of the people who were in the land of Nephi, and in the land of Shilom. And he said unto them; Behold, I am Limhi, the son of Noah, who came up out of the land of Zarahemla to inherit this land, which was the land of their fathers, who was made a king by the voice of the people. Mosiah 6:3; 7:1- 9
And Ammon said: I am Ammon, and am a descendant of Zarahemla, and have come up out of the land of Zarahemla, to inquire concerning our brethren, who Zeniff brought up out of that land. And now King Limhi commanded his guards that they should go to the hill which was north of Shilom, and bring their brethren into the city. Mosiah 7:12, 16
I, Zeniff, having been taught in all the language of the Nephites, and having had a knowledge of the land of Nephi, or of the land of our father’s first inheritance (Was this the land of first inheritance or the land of Nephi, or both?) and having been sent as a spy among the Lamanites and yet, I being over zealous (Why was he over zealous? Maybe he was he prompted. Look what good came from being over zealous: the prophet Abinidi, Alma the older, Alma the younger, and the miraculous escape of both the people Alma and Limhi) to inherit the land of our fathers, collected as many as were desirous to go up to possess the land, (One of those desirous to possess the land was the brother of Amaleki – see Omni 1:27 – 30) and started our journey into the wilderness to go up to the land; nevertheless, after many days wandering in the wilderness (Mosiah wandered [or was lead] many days in the wilderness before he found the Mulekites) we pitched our tents in the place where our brethren were slain, (Mosiah 9:1-2) which was near the land of our fathers.
And it came to pass that I went with four of my men into the city, unto the king; that I might know of the disposition of the king, and that I might know if I might go in with my people and possess the land in peace.
And I went in unto the king, and he covenanted with me that I might possess that land of Lehi-Nephi, and the land of Shilom. And he also commanded that his people should depart out of the land, and I and my people went into the land that we might possess it.
And we began to build buildings, and to repair the walls of the city, yea, even the walls of the city of Lehi-Nephi, and the City of Shilom. (The Lamanites lived there but had never repaired the walls of the city. Does that sound like Lamanites?) Now it was the cunning and the craftiness of king Laman, to bring my people into bondage, that he yielded up the land that we might possess it. Mosiah 9:3-10
And it came to pass that we did inherit the land of our fathers for many years, yea, for the space of twenty and two years. And now it cam to pass that Zeniff conferred the kingdom upon Noah, on of his sons; therefore Noah began to reign in his stead; and he did not walk in the ways of his father. (Why did Zeniff choose Noah to be the king? He had other sons. Was Noah the eldest son?)
And it came to pass that he built a tower near the temple; yea, a very high tower, even so high that he could stand upon the top thereof and overlook the land of Shilom, and also the land of Shemlon, which was possessed by the Lamanites; and he could even look over all the land round about.
And it came to pass that he caused many buildings to be built in the land of Shilom; and he caused a great tower to be built on the hill north of the land Shilom, (Was this the same hill north of the land of Shilom that Ammon and his brethren stopped at before entering into the city? – see Mosiah 7:5) which had been a resort for the children of Nephi at the time they fled out of the land; and thus he did do with the riches which he obtained by the taxation of his people. Mosiah 10:3; 11:1-13
But there was one among them whose name was Alma, he also being a descendant of Nephi, and he was a young man, and he believed the words which Abinidi had spoken, but the king was more wroth, and caused that Alma should be cast out from among them, and sent his servants after him that they might slay him.
And now, it came to pass that as many as did believe him (Alma) did go forth to a place which was called Mormon, having received its name from the king, being in the borders of the land (The borders of which land? The land of Nephi or the land of Zarahemla?) having been infested, by times or at seasons by wild beasts. (Is this the reason that both the Lamanites and the Amulonites were lost and could not find their way back to Shemlon? Is it because they were unfamiliar with this area? Is it because they had never traveled this way? Was it too dangerous because of wild beasts? Is this the reason why Alma and those who were righteous were not afraid? Consider the story of Daniel and the lions. – see Daniel 6) And these things were done in the borders of the land that they might not come to the knowledge of the king. Mosiah 17:2-3; 18:4, 31
And it came to pass that Alma and the people of the Lord took their tents and their families and departed into the wilderness. And they were in number about four hundred and fifty souls. Mosiah 18:34-35
And it came to pass that the people of king Limhi did depart by night into the wilderness with their flocks and their herds, and they went round about the land of Shilom in the wilderness, and bent (Why was their course bent? Was it because they needed to go around something other than the land of Shilom?) their course towards the land of Zarahemla, being led by Ammon and his brethren.
And after being many days in the wilderness they arrived in the land of Zarahemla (Why did it take them many days to get to the land of Zarahemla and it took Alma only 21 days? They must have traveled in a different direction) and joined Mosiah’s people, and became his subjects.
And it came to pass when the Lamanites had found that the people of Limhi had departed out of the land by night, that they sent an army into the wilderness to pursue them; and after they had pursued them two days, they could no longer follow their tracks; therefore they were lost in the wilderness. Mosiah 22:11-16 (The army of the Lamanites could not follow the tracks of Limhi’s flocks and herds. Why would that be? Perhaps the jungle and terrain was too dense to successfully follow even a large group of people? Maybe there was a terrible storm that wiped away any signs? Perhaps the Lamanites were very incompetent trackers? Perhaps the Lord helped Limhi and his people to escape without being followed? Maybe all of these reasons.)
An account of Alma and the people of the Lord.
Now Alma, having been warned of the Lord that the armies of King Noah would come upon them, and having made it known to his people, therefore they gathered together their flocks, and took of their grain, and departed into the wilderness before the armies of King Noah. And they fled eight days journey into the wilderness. And they came to a land, yea, even a very beautiful and pleasant land, a land of pure water. And it came to pass that they began to prosper exceedingly in the land; and they called the land Helam. And it came to pass that they did multiply and prosper exceedingly in the land of Helam; and they built a city, which they called the City of Helam. Mosiah 23:1-20
Now the armies of the Lamanites, which had followed after the people of king Limhi, had been lost in the wilderness for many days. (The army of the Lamanites could not find their way back home after being gone only two days. Why would that be? Did Alma travel in an unfamiliar direction? Would that explain why he arrived in the land of Zarahemla much faster than Amuleck, Zeniff, Ammon, and Limhi? It took them many days to travel to Zarahemla.) And behold, they had found those priests of King Noah, in a place which they called Amulon; and they had begun to till the ground.
Now the name of the leader of those priests was Amulon. And it came to pass that Amulon did plead with the Lamanites; and he also sent forth their wives, who were the daughters of the Lamanites, to plead with their brethren, that they should not destroy their husbands. (The priests of King Noah kidnapped the daughters of the Lamanites after which they became husbands and wives. Now, the daughters who had been kidnapped are pleading for their husband’s lives!? The life of a Lamanite daughter must have been worse than being kidnapped and taken away from their families and homes. Look what King Lamoni did to his daughter: offered her to Ammon to be his wife. At the time, Ammon was a stranger and a Nephite at that!)
And the Lamanites had compassion on Amulon and his brethren, and did not destroy them, because of their wives. And Amulon and his brethren did join the Lamanites, and they were traveling in the wilderness in search of the land of Nephi when they discovered the land of Helam, which was possessed by Alma and his brethren.
And it came to pass that the Lamanites promised unto Alma and his brethren, that if they would show them the way which led to the land of Nephi that they would grant unto them their lives and their liberty. But after Alma had shown them the way that led to the land of Nephi, the Lamanites would not keep their promise but set guards round about the land of Helam, over Alma and his brethren. (Alma had no trouble leading Amulon and the Lamanites back to the land of Nephi. Why? He must have made a map in his travels) And the remainder of them went to the land of Nephi; and a part of them returned to the land of Helam, and also brought with them the wives and the children of the guards who had been left in the land. (The Lamanites must also have been guards with Amulon. Amulon and his brethren already had their wives with them.)
And the King of the Lamanites had granted unto Amulon that he and his brethren should be a king and ruler over his people, who were in the land of Helam; (Why wouldn’t the Lamanites make Amulon and his brethren rulers? They were now In-Laws.) nevertheless he should have no power to do anything contrary to the will of the King of the Lamanites. Mosiah 23:30-39
Now it came to pass that Alma and his people in the night-time gathered their flocks together, and also of their grain; yea, even all the night-time were they gathering their flocks together. And Alma and his people departed into the wilderness; and when they had traveled all day they pitched their tents in a valley, and they called the valley Alma, because he led their way in the wilderness.
And it came to pass that they departed out of the valley, and took their journey into the wilderness. And after they had been in the wilderness twelve days they arrived in the land of Zarahemla; and King Mosiah did also receive them with joy. Mosiah 24: 18-25 (Was the boundary of the land of Zarahemla a mountain ridge or pass like many counties have today? So, did Alma go through the south wilderness to the very edge of the land of Zarahemla in the twelve days and not to downtown Zarahemla City?)
And there began to be much peace again in the land; and the people began to be very numerous, and began to scatter abroad upon the face of the earth, yea, on the north and on the south, on the east and on the west, building large cities and villages in all quarters of the land. And the Lord did visit them and prosper them, and they became a large and wealthy people. Mosiah 27:6-7