Book of Mormon

Look at the Numbers:

% of pages /500* Years % of years /1021*
1 Nephi-Jacob 135 27% 56-179 5.5-17.5%
Enos-Omni 8 1.6% 414-291 28.5-40.5%
Words of Mormon 2 .4% 234 23%
Mosiah-3 Nephi 319 63.8% 234 23%
4 Nephi 4 .8% 286-261 25.6-28%
Mormon-Moroni* 32 6.4% 99 9.7%
* Excluding the Book of Ether

What is the significance of this?

While I was serving on my mission I heard a spiritual thought given by Elder Banner, one of the couple missionaries.  He had us read all the scriptures which state that the book does not contain even a hundredth part of the records of the people (Words of Mormon 1:5; 3 Nephi 5:8; 26:6; Ether 15:33).  The time period which is most notable on this chart is that of Mosiah through 3 Nephi.  What happened during this time period which contains nearly 64% of the pages while only 23% of the time period?  Alma was converted through the words of Abinadi.  His conversion led to the reorganization of the church which approximately 204 souls were baptized in the waters of Mormon.  3 Nephi contains the record of Christ visiting the American continent and his teachings to the people.  So basically this time period records the events from the reorganization of the Church to the coming of Christ.  The Church was restored by Alma approximately 147 BC.  Christ visited the Americas around 34 AD.  This totals about 181 years (17.7% if your still checking numbers).

Still, what is the significance?

We have often heard it said that the Book of Mormon was written for our day.  But why?  On April 6, 1830 the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was reorganized.  It is now .  It has been approximately years since the Church was reorganized (comparable to the 181 years mentioned above).  We are preparing for Christ's second coming, just as the Nephites were preparing for his first visit so many years ago.  Notice the missionary work that took place at this time.  The Book of Mormon was written for our day.

Why did you exclude the Book of Ether?

Because I am the author of this page and I can.  Actually, for those who are not familiar with the chronology of the Book of Mormon, the Book of Ether contains the record of the Jaredites, which came to America long before the Nephites.  (I just lost my seminary chronological bookmark, otherwise I would put that image here).  They came to the American continent somewhere around 2300 BC (someone please correct me if I am wrong).  This was during the construction of the Tower of Babel.  They were spared of having their language confounded.  In the Americas they lived out about 30 generations (again someone can check me on that) until they eventually destroyed themselves in a massive war.  The last two surviving Jaredites were (no, not Shiz) Coriantumr and Ether.  We don't know what happened to Ether.  He was probably translated.  As far as Coriantumr goes, he came across the people of Mulek and stayed with them for nine moons.  The people of Mulek, well that's another story...

.Additional Thoughts

"The Book of Mormon was written for us today.  God is the author of the book.  It is a record of a fallen people, compiled by inspired men for our blessing today.  Those people never had the book -- it was meant for us.  Mormon the ancient prophet after whom the book is named, abridged centuries of records.  God, who knows the end from the beginning, told him what to include in his abridgment that we would need for our day." -Ezra Taft Benson

"Who can deny the truth of the Book of Mormon?  It is here to handle, the evidence for it's truth lies in its reading, its prayerful reading.  Anybody, according to Moroni, can gain a knowledge of the truth, and millions have done so, through the reading of this book.  you can handle it, you can lift it, you can open it, you can search its words.  There have been scores of explanations trying to find some other origin of the book.  Every one has failed, while the Book of Mormon goes on and on and on."  -President Gordon B. Hinckley

"How are we to use it?  We are to get a testimony of it, we are to teach from it, we are to hold it up as a standard and 'hiss it forth.'
"Have we been doing this?  Not as we should, nor as we must."  -Ezra Taft Benson

"No member of this Church can stand approved in the presence of God who has not seriously and carefully read the Book of Mormon." -Joseph Fielding Smith

"We do not have to prove the Book of Mormon is true.  The Book is its own proof.  All we need to do is read it and declare it!  The Book of Mormon is not on trial -- the people of the world, including members of the church, are on trial as to what they will do with this second witness for Christ."  -Ezra Taft Benson

A study was done at BYU with the question:  How often have you gone to the Book of Mormon to find answers? (/500)

For missionaries:

Doctrine and Covenants 84:54-58

54. And your minds in times past have been darkened because of unbelief, and because you have treated lightly the things you have received--
55. Which vanity and unbelief have brought the whole church under condemnation.
56. And this condemnation resteth upon the children of Zion, even all.
57. And they shall remain under this condemnation until they repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon and the former commandments which I have given them, not only to say, but to do according to that which I have written--
58. That they may bring forth fruit meet for their Father's kingdom;  otherwise there remaineth a scourge and judgment to be poured out upon the children of Zion.

Tips for Daily Reading:

This can be difficult.  If you are not currently reading the Book of Mormon and you want to, the first thing I would recommend is a goal.  I am the king of realistic goals.  Don't push yourself too hard could be my motto of life!  If you hate reading as much as I do, I would suggest setting a small goal.  Don't go out and try to put in an hour a day.  My first goal was to at least pick up the Book of Mormon.  It is hard to pick up the Book of Mormon without opening it.  Next step would be at least one verse per day.  I had this goal and I don't think there was a day that I only read one verse.  One time I ended up studying all day at work!  I still slip though.  There are days that I don't read.  To eliminate these I have set up a chart with all my goals.  Instead of just marking an X in the days I read I put a number.  This way I can keep track of consecutive days.  I'll keep you posted.

Me at the Johannesburg South Africa Temple 11/20/1998
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Dustin Davis

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