“He Leadeth Them by the Neck with a Flaxen Cord”

Alan C. Miner

Nephi notes that the devil "leadeth them by the neck with a flaxen cord" (2 Nephi 26:22). Flax is the oldest of textile fibers, and is used to make fine linen (The Illustrated Bible Dictionary, vol. 1, p. 509). If a flaxen cord is made of thin light strands (Book of Mormon Gospel Doctrine Teacher's Manual, 1999, p. 43), and if leading one about with a cord around his neck implies bondage or slavery, then the message here is that the devil very cleverly leads people about with a thin light cord according to their seemingly innocent prideful indulgences and unpunished secret acts until he has firmly secured their bondage with heavier "chains" or with weightier matters. [Alan C. Miner, Personal Notes]

2 Nephi 26:25 Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters ([Illustration]): The Dan River in northern Galilee. Just as the waters of the Dan River, the chief tributary to the Jordan River, have brought life for thousands of years to hundreds of thousands of people, so does Jesus Christ being spiritual life to all who come to him, the living waters. Photograph by Arnold H. Green. [Donald W. Parry, Visualizing Isaiah, p. 94]

Step by Step Through the Book of Mormon: A Cultural Commentary