“A Record of the Jews”

W. Cleon Skousen

Nephi starts out talking about the Old Testament “which proceedeth forth from the mouth of a Jew.” This probably refers to Ezra, the scholarly scribe who brought the Jews back to Jerusalem around 520 B.C. after their seventy-year captivity by the Babylonians. Ezra is credited with the official compilation of the Old Testament at that time from records that were available to him and perhaps that is why Nephi attributed the scriptures to the mouth of aJew. Nephi then says in this verse that the Bible which the Gentiles would bring would contain the gospel as taught by the Apostles in the New Testament. But Nephi is very concerned that there have been some significant changes and deletions in the Bible. Therefore he says:

“Wherefore, these things go forth from the Jews in purity unto the Gentiles, according to the truth which is in God. And after they 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. And all this have they done that they might pervert the right ways of the Lord, that they might blind the eyes and harden the hearts of the children of men. Wherefore, thou seest that after the book hath gone forth through the hands of the great and abominable church, that there are many plain and precious things taken away from the book, which is the book of the Lamb of God.”

Treasures from the Book of Mormon