I updated this from an isolated cabin in Wisconsin, while working on my final dissertation proposal draft (post-defense), our upcoming BYU Studies special issue, and some other projects. And then, working on that other stuff, I forgot to actually hit “update.” Re: these other projects, I’ll post some updates on all this soon.
3 Nephi 20- Miraculous production of bread and wine; Jesus interprets Isaiah.
3 Nephi 21- Jesus continues interpreting Isaiah.
3 Nephi 22- Jesus quotes Isaiah 54
3 Nephi 23 Jesus asks to see the records, to give them more. Rebukes Nephi. Tells them to include Samuel.
3 Nephi 24-25 Gives them Malachi.
3 Nephi 26- Mormon summarizes Jesus actions and visit. 1/100th written.
3 Ne. 27 After that, the disciples were traveling and were together, prayed, and Jesus appeared to them. Name of the church, disputations.
3 Nephi 28 – (This meeting continues) Origin of the 3 Nephites.
3 Nephi 29 – Mormon explains the covenant, that the appearance of Book of Mormon is a sign that the covenant is being fulfilled.
3 Nephi 30- Mormon addresses the Gentiles directly, tells them to repent.
First, on Isaiah. Joseph Spencer has a book out on Isaiah, The Vision of All. Joe typically does fantastic and accessible work, and I recommend it. There’s an interview about it here, and a panel was streamed online. And more importantly, Joe’s work has triggered some healthy discussion of how LDS approach and interpret scripture. First, BYU Hebrew prof Donald Parry, who does a lot of work on Isaiah, weighed in with “An Approach to Isaiah Studies,” a review of Vision of All. Joshua Sears responded to Parry here. (Sears is a relatively recent hire at BYU, with a PhD in Hebrew Bible and good Semitic training.) Parry then has the last word, “The Importance of Authorial Intention” (which is less useful for my point.) There are also some useful comments to these. I’m not going to editorialize on what “side” I come down on, but I’m glad to see explicit LDS discussion around hermeneutics, revelation, etc.
23:1 Again, Jesus has been quoting Isaiah.
3Ne 23:6 What is “scripture” from an etymological point of view?
3Ne 24:2 Malachi and second coming. (See my post about Malachi here)
- v. 3- Levites make an offering to the Lord in righteousness.
- Doctrine and Covenants 128:24 (for members in temple), 124:39 for things in the temple.
- 5 Who will he be angry at? The “non-members”?
- 8 Tithes and offerings- What are these?
- 17-Jewels- Hebrew segullah, translated in Exo 19:5-6 as “peculiar.” C.f. Rev. 1:6, Deu 14:2, 1 Pe. 2:9
25:5-6 Only passage that appears in all 4 standard works.
Doctrine and Covenants 2, Mal. 3:5-6, Joseph Smith-History, 38-9.
Now, on chapters 24-25, we had a conversation in which a ward member said “this sounds really Old Testament-y, about not oppressing the hireling in his wages. What’s it referring to?” The headings to 24-25 indicate a Malachi quote, but that’s easy to forget. If you’re using something like the MI Study Edition, the whole thing is typeset to provide a visual indicator of quotation, in this case by indentation.
26:9 (Mormon) Wrote these things to test the faith of the people. Who is “they:” the “Gentiles” or “this people?”
3Ne 26:11 How does this constitute a test of faith?
3Ne 27:13 The gospel, the good news is that Jesus does the will of the father.
What does “gospel” mean? “Good news” Luke 22:42- Jesus did the will of the Father, thus the atonement came to pass. Doctrine and Covenants 19:13-19.
27:16- Jesus will hold us guiltless. How is Jesus both judge and advocate? D&C 45:4-5
28:7 Three Nephites. Like John?
28:36-37 Mormon adds to himself. Had prayed and had revelation. Means he’s not writing everything at once, but in pieces.
4Ne 1:27 administer sacred things to those unworthy. Ezekiel 22:26, where the priests no longer distinguishing between the holy and the unholy contributes to Israelite downfall.
3Ne 20:10 Jesus finishes the commandment by telling the Nephites about the covenant. See Victor Ludlow, “Jesus’ Covenant Teaching in Third Nephi.” Rediscovering the Book of Mormon, p.177-185.
In discussing the law (Torah?) in 3Ne 15:8, the law is gone, but not the covenant.
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