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‘Come, Follow Me’ for Jan. 22-28: What have Church leaders said about 1 Nephi 11-15?

This week’s study guide includes Nephi’s vision of Jesus Christ and of the latter days

This week’s “Come, Follow Me” study guide covers 1 Nephi 11-15, which includes Nephi’s vision and his interpretation of Lehi’s dream.

Church News searched the archives of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to learn what leaders have said about these chapters.

1 Nephi 11

“What has Jesus Christ done for each of us? He has done everything that is essential for our journey through mortality toward the destiny outlined in the plan of our Heavenly Father. … His Only Begotten Son, Jesus Christ, is the central figure. Motivating all of this is ‘the love of God, which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men; wherefore, it is the most desirable above all things’ (1 Nephi 11:22).”

President Dallin H. Oaks, April 2021 general conference, “What Has Our Savior Done for Us?”

“The valiant among us keep moving forward anyway, because they know the Lord loves them, even when they ‘do not know the meaning of all things’ (1 Nephi 11:17). As you and I observe the valiant cope successfully with severe and relentless trials, we applaud and celebrate their emerging strength and goodness. Yet the rest of us tremble at the tuition required for the shaping of such sterling character, while hoping we would not falter should similar circumstances come to us!”

— Elder Neal A. Maxwell, April 2001 general conference, “‘Plow in Hope’”

“Doubt not, but believe that it was He who was born to earth in a manger when there was no room in the inn. Well did an angel ask a prophet who had foreseen these things in vision: ‘Knowest thou the condescension of God?’ (1 Nephi 11:16) I suppose none of us can fully understand that — how the great Jehovah should come among men, His birth in a manger, among a hated people, in a vassal state. But at His birth there was an angelic chorus that sang of His glory. There were shepherds who worshiped Him. There was a new star in the east. There were wise men who traveled far to bring tribute of gold, frankincense and myrrh. One can surmise they touched those tiny hands in wonder and awe as they presented their gifts to the newborn king.”

— Then-Elder Gordon B. Hinckley, April 1978 general conference, “‘Be Not Faithless’”

“As I have read the scriptures, I have been challenged by the word ‘ponder,’ so frequently used in the Book of Mormon. The dictionary says that ‘ponder’ means ‘to weigh mentally, think deeply about, deliberate, meditate.’ …

“Pondering is, in my feeling, a form of prayer. It has, at least, been an approach to the Spirit of the Lord on many occasions. Nephi tells us of one such occasion:

“‘For it came to pass,’ he wrote, ‘after I had desired to know the things that my father had seen, and believing that the Lord was able to make them known unto me, as I sat pondering in mine heart I was caught away in the Spirit of the Lord, yea, into an exceeding high mountain’ (1 Nephi 11:1).

“Then follows Nephi’s account of the great vision he was given by the Spirit of the Lord, because he believed the words of his prophet father and had such a great desire to know more that he pondered and prayed about them.”

— President Marion G. Romney, April 1973 general conference, “Magnifying One’s Calling in the Priesthood”

“Nephi’s Vision of the Virgin Mary” is by Judith A. Mehr.
“Nephi’s Vision of the Virgin Mary” is by Judith A. Mehr. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

1 Nephi 12

“In the Book of Mormon, Nephi explains the consequences of yielding to temptation: ‘The temptations of the devil… blindeth the eyes, and hardeneth the hearts of the children of men, and leadeth them away into broad roads, that they perish and are lost’ (1 Nephi 12:17).

“To blind the eyes is not to see or acknowledge the consequences of our actions. To harden the heart is to ignore or not be willing to accept counsel. To be led into the broad roads is to give in to worldly enticements and lose the influence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. …

“Temptation is like a magnetic force which holds a metal object in its power. It loses its magnetic force and power when you turn away from it. So we must turn away from temptation; then it will lose its power.”

— Elder Rulon G. Craven, April 1996 general conference, “Temptation”

1 Nephi 13

“One of the things I learned in this most recent reading of the Book of Mormon was how much God loves all of His children in every nation. … Again and again the Book of Mormon teaches that the gospel of Jesus Christ is universal in its promise and effect, reaching out to all who ever live on the earth. …

“The Book of Mormon is a great witness that the Lord loves all people everywhere. It declares that ‘he shall manifest himself unto all nations’ (1 Nephi 13:42). ‘Know ye not that there are more nations than one?’ the Lord said through the prophet Nephi.”

Then-Elder Dallin H. Oaks, April 2006 general conference, “All Men Everywhere”

“[Only] once does the word ‘atonement’ appear in the English New Testament. ‘Atonement,’ of all words! It was not an unknown word, for it had been used much in the Old Testament in connection with the law of Moses, once only in the New Testament. I find that to be remarkable.

I know of only one explanation. For that we turn to the Book of Mormon.

“Nephi testified that the Bible once ‘contained the fulness of the gospel of the Lord, of whom the twelve apostles bear record’ (1 Nephi 13:24) and that ‘After [the words] go forth by the hand of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, from the Jews unto the Gentiles, thou seest the formation of that great and abominable church, which is most abominable above all other churches; for behold, they have taken away from the gospel of the Lamb many parts which are plain and most precious; and also many covenants of the Lord have they taken away’ (1 Nephi 13:26). …

“Nephi said, ‘Because of the many plain and precious things which have been taken out of the book … an exceedingly great many do stumble, yea, insomuch that Satan hath great power over them’ (1 Nephi 13:29).

“He then prophesied that the precious things would be restored (see 1 Nephi 13:34-35).

“And they were restored. In the Book of Mormon the word ‘atone’ in form and tense appears 55 times. …

“Only once in the New Testament — 55 times in the Book of Mormon. What better witness that the Book of Mormon is indeed another testament of Jesus Christ?”

— Then-Elder Boyd K. Packer, April 1988 general conference, “Atonement, Agency, Accountability”

Nephi prays, as depicted in this photograph from the portrayal in the Book of Mormon Videos.
Nephi prays, as depicted in this photograph from the portrayal in the Book of Mormon Videos. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

1 Nephi 14

“The prophet Nephi beheld in vision that in the last days, the power of the Lamb of God would descend ‘upon the covenant people of the Lord’ and they would be ‘armed with righteousness and with the power of God in great glory’ (1 Nephi 14:14).

“Every one of us, and our families, can be armed with the power of God as a defense if we will but remain true to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and let the Spirit be our guide. Trials may come, and we may not understand everything that happens to us or around us. But if we humbly, quietly trust in the Lord, He will give us strength and guidance in every challenge we face. When our only desire is to please Him, we will be blessed with a deep inner peace.”

— Elder Bruce D. Porter, April 2013 general conference, “Beautiful Mornings”

1 Nephi 15

“[Book of Mormon] prophets foretold that many multitudes of Gentiles would eventually come to this land of promise and the wrath of God would be upon the Lamanites and they would be scattered, smitten and nearly destroyed...

“My great-grandfather Echo Hawk, a Pawnee Indian, was born in the mid-1800s in what is now called Nebraska. When he was 19 years of age, the Pawnee people were forced to give up their 23-million-acre homeland to make room for settlers. In 1874 the Pawnee people were marched several hundred miles south to a small reservation located in the Oklahoma Indian Territory. The population of Pawnee people had declined from over 12,000 to less than 700 upon their arrival in Oklahoma. The Pawnee, like other tribes, had been scattered, smitten and nearly destroyed.

“The Book of Mormon has a special message for descendants of the Lamanites, a remnant of the house of Israel. Nephi expressed this message while interpreting his father’s vision of these latter days: ‘And at that day shall the remnant of our seed know that they are of the house of Israel, and that they are the covenant people of the Lord; and then shall they know and come to the knowledge of their forefathers, and also to the knowledge of the gospel of their Redeemer, which was ministered unto their fathers by him; wherefore, they shall come to the knowledge of their Redeemer and the very points of his doctrine, that they may know how to come unto him and be saved’ (1 Nephi 15:14).”

— Elder Larry Echo Hawk, October 2012 general conference, “‘Come unto Me, O Ye House of Israel’”

“The prophet Nephi describes the Final Judgment in terms of what we have become: ‘And if their works have been filthiness they must needs be filthy; and if they be filthy it must needs be that they cannot dwell in the kingdom of God’ (1 Nephi 15:33). …

“From such teachings we conclude that the Final Judgment is not just an evaluation of a sum total of good and evil acts — what we have done. It is an acknowledgment of the final effect of our acts and thoughts — what we have become. It is not enough for anyone just to go through the motions. The commandments, ordinances and covenants of the gospel are not a list of deposits required to be made in some heavenly account. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a plan that shows us how to become what our Heavenly Father desires us to become.”

Then-Elder Dallin H. Oaks, October 2000 general conference, “The Challenge to Become”

“In one of those difficult times that the faithful and dedicated young Nephi had with his rebellious brothers, he reminded them of the following guide to obtaining a testimony. The Lord declared, ‘If ye will not harden your hearts, and ask me in faith, believing that ye shall receive, with diligence in keeping my commandments, surely these things shall be made known unto you’ (1 Nephi 15:11). Now, we can review the steps Nephi described.

“First, don’t harden your heart. Seek to know. In other words, have an intense, consuming desire to know. …

“Second, ask in faith. In your study of the scriptures, have you noted how many times the phrase ‘believing that ye shall receive’ accompanies the commandment of praying and asking? …

“Third, keep the commandments. I think that the words of the Book of Mormon point out the blessings that we can obtain if we abound in good works. …

“There is yet the most important help available that can give us confirmation and absolute assurance, and it is your right when you live worthy to receive the companionship of the Holy Ghost. … The Holy Ghost has the power to bring light and understanding to our lives, but we must pay the price to seek and win His companionship.”

— Elder Angel Abrea, April 2000 general conference, “Your Own Personal Testimony”

Nephi prays by a stream, as depicted in this photograph from the portrayal in the Book of Mormon Videos.
Nephi prays by a stream, as depicted in this photograph from the portrayal in the Book of Mormon Videos. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
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