“These Things”

George Reynolds, Janne M. Sjodahl

Refers to the Book of Mormon. Nephi discloses important information in these paragraphs.

First, he says God has promised him that his writings would be preserved and handed down to his seed, from generation to generation, in fulfilment of a promise given to Joseph, that "his seed should never perish as long as the earth should stand." Just when Joseph received that promise is not stated, but see the blessings of Ephraim and Manasseh (Gen. 49:22-26). Jacob said to Joseph, in part:

"The blessings of thy father have prevailed

Above the blessings of my progenitors,

Unto the utmost bounds of the everlasting hills,

They shall be on the head of Joseph."

It is evident that Nephi did not expect that his descendants would ever be exterminated, and they never were. He believed that the promise to Joseph would be fulfilled in his descendants, to the end of days.

Secondly, Nephi tells us that his writings would be distributed from generation to generation, as long as the earth shall stand, and that the distribution would be under the special direction of God. This is a natural deduction, since He alone knows for certain where the descendants of Joseph would be from generation to generation.

Third, Nephi tells us that the nations, to whom these writings become known, will be judged according to the moral and ethical standards they reveal. This is one reason why the statesmen of the world would do well to study the Book of Mormon. For a day will come, when the Lord shall return in glory, at the beginning of the Millennium. Then he will summon the nations before him. Their records will be scrutinized, and a place will be assigned to each in accordance with the treatment accorded "one of the least" of these. For there is a national, as well as an individual, day of Judgment. (Matt. 25:31-46)

Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 1