“For We Cannot Witness with Our Own Eyes That They Are True”

Brant Gardner

This verse provides more evidence that the Nephite apostasy has followed its traditional path. Korihor (“anti-Christ”) had made the same argument:

And this Anti-Christ, whose name was Korihor, (and the law could have no hold upon him) began to preach unto the people that there should be no Christ. And after this manner did he preach, saying:
O ye that are bound down under a foolish and a vain hope, why do ye yoke yourselves with such foolish things? Why do ye look for a Christ? For no man can know of anything which is to come.
Behold, these things which ye call prophecies, which ye say are handed down by holy prophets, behold, they are foolish traditions of your fathers.
How do ye know of their surety? Behold, ye cannot know of things which ye do not see; therefore ye cannot know that there shall be a Christ. (Alma 30:12–15)

The Nephites’ current argument virtually replicates Korihor’s: there can be no Messiah because we cannot know what we cannot see. This Nehorite heresy appeared first in Noah’s court, then was preached by Nehor, and again by Korihor. That same set of beliefs has now become the Nephites’ majority religion.

Second Witness: Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 5