“Nephi and Lehi Were in the Midst of Them and They Were as If in the Midst of a Flaming Fire”

D. Kelly Ogden, Andrew C. Skinner

The power of righteous servants of God is manifested in a miraculous way. The prophet-missionaries were encircled about “as if by fire.” That was not our usual fire but the glory of the Lord and his messengers. His dwelling cloud (Hebrew Shekhinah) is depicted as “glory,” “fire,” “like lightning,” “light,” “exquisite whiteness,” “brightness,” “brilliance,” and “radiance” (for more details, see commentary at 1 Nephi 1:6; 22:15–17; 3 Nephi 25:1).10 Fire is an apt description. The Prophet Joseph Smith said that heavenly beings dwell in “everlasting burnings.”11 The experience of Nephi and Lehi recalls Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego (Daniel 3:19–27).

While they were full of joy and glory, unspeakable manifestations of the Holy Spirit ensued. This is a supernal example of how the word of God is more powerful than the sword (Alma 31:5). Numerous Lamanites were convinced of the truth “because of the greatness of the evidences which they had received.”

Verse by Verse: The Book of Mormon: Vol. 2