Saturday, June 18, 2011

"Inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments" Scripture Chain

One of the reoccurring themes in the Book of Mormon is the idea that if the people follow the commandments of God then they will prosper, but if not then they will be cut off from his presence. This theme is so prevalent that it is mentioned at least 18 20 times in the Book of Mormon in almost the exact same way. If there is something that is mentioned so many times in the Book of Mormon then I think it should be something to take note of.

One thing I find particularly interesting is the difference between what is promised for keeping the commandments, and what the consequence is for not keeping the commandments. On the one hand those who keep the commandments are promised that they will "prosper in the land". But on the other hand those who do not keep the commandments are not warned that they will be destroyed, instantly, slowly or otherwise, but they are warned that they will be "cut off from the presence of the Lord." So the warning for not keeping the commandments, interestingly enough is not instant, immediate, absolute and eternal destruction, but rather that they (those who do not keep the commandments) will be left to their own devices, and will be left to fend for themselves. They will stand or fall by their own strength and will no longer receive the sustaining influence of the Lord.

A number of years ago one of my sisters loaned my a set of scriptures to use in seminary. It was the same set of scriptures that several of my sisters had used in seminary (sorry I don't know the full history of this set of scriptures, but it does have two of my sister's names in the front). Somewhere along the way someone had written a scripture chain which included every instance where the promise and warning is given in the Book of Mormon. I just wanted to include that scripture chain here, with links to the scriptures on Hopefully this will be helpful to someone.
  1. 1 Nephi 2:20-21
  2. 1 Nephi 4:14
  3. 2 Nephi 1:9,11
  4. 2 Nephi 1:20
  5. 2 Nephi 4:4
  6. Jarom 1:9
  7. Omni 1:6
  8. Mosiah 1:7
  9. Mosiah 2:22
  10. Mosiah 2:31
  11. Alma 9:13
  12. Alma 36:1
  13. Alma 36:30
  14. Alma 37:13
  15. Alma 38:1
  16. Alma 48:15
  17. Alma 48:25
  18. Alma 50:20
  19. Helaman 3:20
  20. 3 Nephi 5:22
[Author's note 8/23/15: After going back and checking these verses I found two more references that were not in my original list. Alma 48:15 refers to the original prophecy found in 2 Nephi 1:20. 3 Nephi 5:22 is commentary by Mormon about the fulfillment of that prophecy. As near as I can tell this list is now complete. Also note the interesting difference in Omni 1:6.]


John Evelyn said...

just came across your blog looking for how many times "keep my commandments" was mentioned in the Book of Mormon. (25x was mentioned in other sources) But appreciate your thoughts. I will visit again.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for posting this. A Google search brought me here and I found these scriptures to be very insightful and inspired. Thank you.

Quantumleap42 said...

Thanks Anonymous.

John, sorry I didn't respond sooner. I got this list from Seminary way back in the day and I thought about going through and verifying it but have not had the time. I will do it some day and post an updated list if there were any references that were missed.

John said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matthew Prina said...

Thanks for your post! I also found this while doing a google search while making a blog post about the exact same thing! I like the looks of your blog. Feel free to check out mine if you want: (AKA THE BOM .COM)

Mark Rowen said...

Thanks for your post. I was reflecting on this thought this morning and wondered if i might find how many times it was referenced in the book of mormon by doing a google search. Turns out I can (thanks to you). :)

Anonymous said...

Yep, I found this from a Google search too, looking for exactly what the page answered. Thank you!