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Library Tour of 2 Nephi 11
2 Nephi 11
1 And now, Jacob spake many more things to my people at that time; nevertheless only
these things have I caused to be written, for the things which I have written sufficeth
2 And now I, Nephi, write more of the words of Isaiah, for my soul delighteth in
his words. For I will liken his words unto my people, and I will send them forth
unto all my children, for he verily saw my Redeemer, even as I have seen him.
3 And my brother, Jacob, also has seen him as I have seen him; wherefore, I will
send their words forth unto my children to prove unto them that my words are true.
Wherefore, by the words of three, God hath said, I will establish my word. Nevertheless,
God sendeth more witnesses, and he proveth all his words.
4 Behold, my soul delighteth in proving unto my people the truth of the coming of
Christ; for, for this end hath the law of Moses been given; and all things which
have been given of God from the beginning of the world, unto man, are the typifying
5 And also my soul delighteth in the covenants of the Lord which he hath made to
our fathers; yea, my soul delighteth in his grace, and in his justice, and power,
and mercy in the great and eternal plan of deliverance from death.
6 And my soul delighteth in proving unto my people that save Christ should come all
men must perish.
7 For if there be no Christ there be no God; and if there be no God we are not, for
there could have been no creation. But there is a God, and he is Christ, and he cometh
in the fulness of his own time.
8 And now I write some of the words of Isaiah, that whoso of my people shall see
these words may lift up their hearts and rejoice for all men. Now these are the words,
and ye may liken them unto you and unto all men.
Neil A. Maxwell Institute for Religious Scholarship. 2007.
The writings of Isaiah are, of course, heavy with Hebrew parallelism. As Nephi introduces
Isaiah’s writings, he does so with a chiasm. This and hundreds of other chiasmi
in the Book of Mormon are delineated in Parry’s indispensable book.
Parry notes, “A vitally significant perspective to bear in mind when reviewing the
forms of this book is this: there is no poetic, parallelistic, repetitious form
or figure of speech that should become more important than the Book of Mormon’s chief
message, which is to convince “the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the
Eternal God” (Book of Mormon title page). Rather, all of these forms and figures
are designed to present this message regarding Jesus Christ and his gospel in an
unforgettable, understandable, artistic, and fascinating way. The forms and figures
gave writers of scripture unique methods of expression as they set forth religious
doctrines, tenets, and principles. Apparently, the prophets and writers of the scriptures
employed the repetition of alternating parallel lines for the purpose of reinforcing
their teachings and doctrines. By hearing something repeated twice, albeit in different
words, the hearer or reader is more apt to understand and remember the doctrine being
taught. In this way, the teaching is conveyed with more impact, more force, and
a greater level of intensity. But still, the forms and figures are not more than
a means to an end, and that end is to impart truths regarding Jesus Christ, his atoning
sacrifice, and his plan of happiness. The form of the message should never become
of greater consequence than the message.”