“The Scriptures Fulfilled Which Had Been Spoken by the Prophets”

Alan C. Miner

According to Richard Rust, the Book of Mormon is prophecy designed specifically and intentionally for our day (see Mormon 8:35; 3 Nephi 26:12; 2 Nephi 3:19). When I say "designed," I mean not only planned with a purpose but shaped artistically so that form and content are totally integrated. . . . I have come to realize that the literary aspects of the Book of Mormon are essential to its purposes. . . . Imagery helps teach memorably and vividly the covenants of the Lord. For example, faith in Jesus Christ the Creator, the Son of God, is shown in the contrast of light and dark and in reference to the four major elements of earth, air, fire, and water. These are brought together in the section of the Book of Mormon that prefigures the Second Coming of Christ. The chaos of things splitting apart and intense darkness--the opposite of creation--is associated with the death of the Creator. Cities are sunk in the sea, Zarahemla is burned, and Moronihah is covered with earth. We are told:

It was the more righteous part of the people who were saved. . . . And they were spared and were not sunk and buried up in the earth; and they were not drowned in the depths of the sea; and they were not burned by fire, neither were they fallen upon and crushed to death; and they were not carried away i the whirlwind; neither were they overpowered by the vapor of smoke and of darkness. (3 Nephi 10:12-13)

[Richard D. Rust, "The Book of Mormon, Designed for Our Day," in Review of Books on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 2, 1990, pp. 2,14]

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