“The Country Divided into Two Kingdoms”

Monte S. Nyman

Two major kingdoms are another parallel with the Nephite record (v. 20), the people of Nephi (see 2 Nephi 5:5–9) and the people of Laman (see 2 Nephi 5:20–25). In the Jaredite situation the leader of the kingdom of Shule was the fourth generation from Jared, and the leader of the kingdom of Cohor was the fifth generation from Jared. When Cohor was slain, a sixth generation Jaredite named Nimrod (Ether 7:22), no connection to the biblical hunter (Genesis 10:9), gave up the opposition kingdom to Shule, but it was short-lived.

The unnamed prophets who were sent from the Lord unto the Jaredites (Ether 7:23) had the same message as the prophets who were later sent to Jerusalem, repent or be destroyed (v. 23; cp 2 Nephi 25:9), or to the wicked Nephites (see Abinadi’s message to King Noah, Mosiah 12:8). Many Jaredites reviled against the prophets and mocked them (Ether 7:24). The law that could bring peace among them, allow the prophets to preach (v. 25), was the same formula that brought peace to the Nephites at various times. “With the help of [the prophets], King Benjamin … did once more establish peace in the land” (Words of Mormon 1:17–18). Alma “delivered the judgment seat unto Nephihah… . that he might preach the word of God” (Alma 4:18–19). Nephi, son of Helaman “yielded up the judgment seat and took it upon him to preach the word of God” (Helaman 5:4). The result of this preaching was prosperity among the Jaredites (Ether 7:26) as well as peace among the Nephites, as will be seen throughout the Book of Mormon (Mosiah 10:1–5; 26:37; Alma 1:28–33).

The reign of Shule, the great king of the fourth Jaredite generation, came to an end. Ether chapter 7 has given us the record of the three generations of the Jaredites that followed the first of Jared and his brother. It also includes some of the following generations, but they will continue in the next chapter.

Book of Mormon Commentary: I Mormon Make a Record