THE SECOND BOOK OF NEPHI
Jews shall be gathered in all their lands of promise—Atonement ransoms man from the fall—The bodies of the dead shall come forth from the grave, and their spirits from hell and from paradise—They shall be judged—Atonement saves from death, hell, the devil, and endless torment—The righteous to be saved in the kingdom of God—Penalties for sins set forth—The Holy One of Israel is the keeper of the gate. Between 559 and 545 B.C.
now, my beloved brethren, I have read these things that ye might know concerning the acovenants
of the Lord that he has covenanted with all the house of Israel—
That he has spoken unto the Jews, by the mouth of his holy prophets, even from the beginning down, from generation to generation, until the time comes that they shall be arestored
to the true church and fold of God; when they shall be bgathered
home to the clands
of their inheritance, and shall be established in all their lands of promise.
Behold, my beloved brethren, I speak unto you these things that ye may rejoice, and alift
up your heads forever, because of the blessings which the Lord God shall bestow upon your children.
For I know that ye have searched much, many of you, to know of things to come; wherefore I know that ye know that our aflesh
must waste away and die; nevertheless, in our bbodies
we shall see God.
Yea, I know that ye know that in the body he shall show himself unto those at Jerusalem, from whence we came; for it is expedient that it should be among them; for it behooveth the great aCreator
that he bsuffereth
himself to become csubject
unto man in the flesh, and ddie
men, that all men might become subject unto him.
For as adeath
hath passed upon all men, to fulfil the merciful bplan
of the great Creator, there must needs be a power of cresurrection
, and the resurrection must needs come unto man by reason of the dfall
; and the fall came by reason of etransgression
; and because man became fallen they were fcut
off from the gpresence
of the Lord.
Wherefore, it must needs be an ainfinite batonement
—save it should be an infinite atonement this corruption could not put on incorruption. Wherefore, the cfirst
judgment which came upon man must needs have dremained
to an endless duration. And if so, this flesh must have laid down to rot and to crumble to its mother earth, to rise no more.
O the awisdom
of God, his bmercy
! For behold, if the dflesh
should rise no more our spirits must become subject to that angel who efell
from before the presence of the Eternal God, and became the fdevil
, to rise no more.
And our spirits must have become alike
unto him, and we become devils, bangels
to a cdevil
, to be dshut
out from the presence of our God, and to remain with the father of elies
, in misery, like unto himself; yea, to that being who fbeguiled
our first parents, who gtransformeth
himself nigh unto an hangel
of light, and istirreth
up the children of men unto jsecret
combinations of murder and all manner of secret works of darkness.
O how great the agoodness
of our God, who prepareth a way for our bescape
from the grasp of this awful monster; yea, that monster, cdeath
, which I call the death of the body, and also the death of the spirit.
And because of the way of adeliverance
of our God, the Holy One of Israel, this bdeath
, of which I have spoken, which is the temporal, shall deliver up its dead; which death is the grave.
And this adeath
of which I have spoken, which is the spiritual death, shall deliver up its dead; which spiritual death is bhell
; wherefore, death and hell must cdeliver
up their dead, and hell must deliver up its dcaptive espirits
, and the grave must deliver up its captive fbodies
, and the bodies and the gspirits
of men will be hrestored
one to the other; and it is by the power of the resurrection of the Holy One of Israel.
O how great the aplan
of our God! For on the other hand, the bparadise
of God must deliver up the spirits of the righteous, and the grave deliver up the body of the righteous; and the spirit and the body is crestored
to itself again, and all men become incorruptible, and dimmortal
, and they are living souls, having a eperfect fknowledge
like unto us in the flesh, save it be that our knowledge shall be perfect.
And it shall come to pass that when all men shall have passed from this first death unto life, insomuch as they have become immortal, they must appear before the ajudgment
-seat of the Holy One of Israel; and then cometh the bjudgment
, and then must they be judged according to the holy judgment of God.
And assuredly, as the Lord liveth, for the Lord God hath spoken it, and it is his eternal aword
, which cannot bpass
away, that they who are righteous shall be righteous still, and they who are cfilthy
shall be dfilthy
still; wherefore, they who are filthy are the edevil
and his angels; and they shall go away into feverlasting
fire, prepared for them; and their gtorment
is as a hlake
of fire and brimstone, whose flame ascendeth up forever and ever and has no end.
O the greatness and the ajustice
of our God! For he executeth all his words, and they have gone forth out of his mouth, and his law must be bfulfilled
But, behold, the arighteous
, the bsaints
of the Holy One of Israel, they who have believed in the Holy One of Israel, they who have endured the ccrosses
of the world, and despised the shame of it, they shall dinherit
of God, which was prepared for them ffrom
the foundation of the world, and their gjoy
shall be full hforever
O the greatness of the mercy of our God, the Holy One of Israel! For he adelivereth
his saints from that bawful
monster the devil, and death, and chell
, and that lake of fire and brimstone, which is endless torment.
O how great the aholiness
of our God! For he bknoweth call
things, and there is not anything save he knows it.
And he cometh into the world that he may asave
all men if they will hearken unto his voice; for behold, he suffereth the pains of all men, yea, the bpains
of every living creature, both men, women, and children, who belong to the family of cAdam
And he suffereth this that the resurrection might pass upon all men, that all might stand before him at the great and judgment day.
And he commandeth all men that they must arepent
, and be bbaptized
in his name, having perfect cfaith
in the Holy One of Israel, or they cannot be saved in the kingdom of God.
And if they will not repent and believe in his aname
, and be baptized in his name, and bendure
to the end, they must be cdamned
; for the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, has spoken it.
Wherefore, he has given a alaw
; and where there is bno claw
given there is no dpunishment
; and where there is no punishment there is no condemnation; and where there is no condemnation the mercies of the Holy One of Israel have claim upon them, because of the atonement; for they are delivered by the power of him.
For the aatonement
satisfieth the demands of his bjustice
upon all those who chave
not the dlaw
given to them, that they are edelivered
from that awful monster, death and fhell
, and the devil, and the lake of fire and brimstone, which is endless torment; and they are restored to that God who gave them gbreath
, which is the Holy One of Israel.
But wo unto him that has the alaw
given, yea, that has all the commandments of God, like unto us, and that btransgresseth
them, and that cwasteth
the days of his dprobation
, for awful is his state!
O that cunning aplan
of the evil one! O the bvainness
, and the frailties, and the cfoolishness
of men! When they are dlearned
they think they are ewise
, and they fhearken
not unto the gcounsel
of God, for they set it aside, supposing they know of themselves, wherefore, their hwisdom
is foolishness and it profiteth them not. And they shall perish.
But wo unto the arich
, who are brich
as to the things of the cworld
. For because they are rich they despise the dpoor
, and they persecute the meek, and their ehearts
are upon their treasures; wherefore, their ftreasure
is their god. And behold, their gtreasure
shall perish with them also.
And wo unto the deaf that will not ahear
; for they shall perish.
Wo unto the ablind
that will not see; for they shall perish also.
Wo unto the auncircumcised
of heart, for a knowledge of their iniquities shall smite them at the last day.
Wo unto the aliar
, for he shall be thrust down to bhell
Wo unto them who commit awhoredoms
, for they shall be thrust down to hell.
Yea, wo unto those that aworship
idols, for the devil of all devils delighteth in them.
And, in fine, wo unto all those who die in their asins
; for they shall breturn
to God, and behold his face, and remain in their sins.
O, my beloved brethren, give ear to my words. Remember the greatness of the Holy One of Israel. Do not say that I have spoken hard things against you; for if ye do, ye will arevile
against the btruth
; for I have spoken the words of your Maker. I know that the words of truth are chard
against all duncleanness
; but the erighteous
fear them not, for they love the truth and are not shaken.
O then, my beloved brethren, acome
unto the Lord, the Holy One. Remember that his paths are righteous. Behold, the bway
for man is cnarrow
, but it lieth in a straight course before him, and the keeper of the dgate
is the Holy One of Israel; and he employeth no servant there; and there is none other way save it be by the gate; for he cannot be deceived, for the Lord God is his name.
And whoso aknocketh
, to him will he open; and the bwise
, and the learned, and they that are rich, who are puffed up because of their clearning
, and their dwisdom
, and their riches—yea, they are they whom he despiseth; and save they shall cast these things away, and consider themselves efools
before God, and come down in the depths of fhumility
, he will not open unto them.
But the things of the wise and the aprudent
shall be bhid
from them forever—yea, that happiness which is prepared for the saints.
O, my beloved brethren, remember my words. Behold, I take off my garments, and I shake them before you; I pray the God of my salvation that he view me with his aall
-searching eye; wherefore, ye shall know at the last day, when all men shall be judged of their works, that the God of Israel did witness that I bshook
your iniquities from my soul, and that I stand with brightness before him, and am crid
of your blood.
O, my beloved brethren, turn away from your sins; shake off the achains
of him that would bind you fast; come unto that God who is the brock
of your salvation.
Prepare your souls for that glorious day when ajustice
shall be administered unto the righteous, even the day of bjudgment
, that ye may not shrink with awful fear; that ye may not remember your awful cguilt
in perfectness, and be constrained to exclaim: Holy, holy are thy judgments, O Lord God dAlmighty
—but I know my guilt; I transgressed thy law, and my transgressions are mine; and the devil hath eobtained
me, that I am a prey to his awful misery.
But behold, my brethren, is it expedient that I should awake you to an awful reality of these things? Would I harrow up your souls if your minds were pure? Would I be plain unto you according to the plainness of the truth if ye were freed from sin?
Behold, if ye were holy I would speak unto you of holiness; but as ye are not holy, and ye look upon me as a ateacher
, it must needs be expedient that I bteach
you the consequences of sin.
Behold, my soul abhorreth sin, and my heart adelighteth
in righteousness; and I will bpraise
the holy name of my God.
Come, my brethren, every one that athirsteth
, come ye to the bwaters
; and he that hath no cmoney
, come buy and eat; yea, come buy wine and milk without money and without price.
Wherefore, do not spend money for that which is of no worth, nor your alabor
for that which cannot bsatisfy
. Hearken diligently unto me, and remember the words which I have spoken; and come unto the Holy One of Israel, and cfeast
upon that which perisheth not, neither can be corrupted, and let your soul delight in fatness.
Behold, my beloved brethren, remember the words of your God; pray unto him continually by day, and give athanks
unto his holy name by night. Let your hearts brejoice
And behold how great the acovenants
of the Lord, and how great his bcondescensions
unto the children of men; and because of his greatness, and his cgrace
, he has promised unto us that our seed shall not utterly be destroyed, according to the flesh, but that he would epreserve
them; and in future generations they shall become a righteous fbranch
unto the house of Israel.
And now, my brethren, I would speak unto you more; but on the morrow I will declare unto you the remainder of my words. Amen.