“And They Had All Things Common Among Them Every Man Dealing Justly, One with Another”

Brant Gardner

The establishment of the gospel community in the New World mirrored the social construction of the earliest Christian communities in the Old World:

Acts 2:44

44 And all that believed were together, and had all things common;

Even though the language is the same, we should not suppose that the precise economic and social conditions prevailed. The economic conditions of the early Christians in Jerusalem were quite different from the Nephites, and the economic background against which their new community would be contrasted also differed. For the Jerusalem Christians, they were a small community inside a larger community that did not share their ideals. They created a community of commonality inside a society that accepted social hierarchies.

In the New World the Nephites were still agriculturally based, so the holding of all in common was a more natural and simple thing. There was less that was not in common in the first place. Secondly, the Nephite ideal has long been social equality, and the institution of such social equality through commonality of economics was not foreign to the Nephite conditions. For the Nephites, this statement is almost more of one that suggests that the began to live well the principles that they had long espoused.

Multidimensional Commentary on the Book of Mormon