2013 Book of Mormon : Chapter 10 (Institute Lesson by hgellor)
DOCTRINES AND PRINCIPLES IN THIS LESSON:
•All things that God has given us typify Jesus Christ (see 2 Nephi 11:4–8).
•God will bring judgment and peace in the last days (see 2 Nephi 12–14).
•Isaiah prophesied that the Lord would lift an ensign to gather Israel (see
2 Nephi 12:1–3; 15:13–30).
2 Nephi 11-16
2 Nephi 11
1 And now, Jacob spake many more things
to my people at that time; nevertheless
only these things have I caused to be
written, for the things which I have written
2 And now I, Nephi, write amore of the
words of Isaiah, for my soul delighteth in
his words. For I will liken his words unto
my people, and I will send them forth unto
all my children, for he verily saw my
Redeemer, even as I have seen him.
3 And my brother, Jacob, also has seen
him as I have seen him; wherefore, I will
send their words forth unto my children to
prove unto them that my words are true.
Wherefore, by the words of three, God
hath said, I will establish my word.
Nevertheless, God sendeth more
witnesses, and he proveth all his words.
A little introduction to the lesson…
Identify the three main writers in the small
plates of Nephi.
The writings of Nephi, Jacob, and
Isaiahconstitute 135 of the 143 pages in the
small plates (from the book of 1 Nephi through
the book of Omni).
Why might it be important to have the testimonies
of these three prophets near the beginning of the
Book of Mormon?
According to 2 Nephi 11:3, how does God establish
His word? Why do you think it is important to have
multiple witnesses of God’s word?
Nephi said that in addition to providing witnesses,
the Lord “proveth all his words” (2 Nephi 11:3).
How has the Lord helped you see the truthfulness
of His words?
When else has the Lord provided three witnesses?
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles wrote of the significance of the testimonies of these
three great prophets:
“The Lord’s manner of teaching and affirming, especially when it involves a covenant, has always provided more
than one testimony. His admonition has always been that ‘in the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every
word be established.’ Indeed, when the Book of Mormon was to come forth through the inspired hand of the
Prophet Joseph Smith, it was prophesied that ‘three shall … be shown *the plates+ by the power of God. … And in
the mouth of three witnesses shall these things be established. …
“Those three witnesses were to be Oliver Cowdery, David Whitmer, and Martin Harris. …
“In keeping with this same covenantal principle, it is interesting to note that there were three earlier witnesses—
special witnesses—not only of the divine origins of the Book of Mormon but also of Divinity himself. These early
witnesses were Nephi, Jacob, and Isaiah, and it is not by coincidence that their testimonies appear so
conspicuously at the beginning of this ancient record. …
“… What is known is that most of the ‘greater views’ of the gospel found in the teachings of the small plates of
Nephi come from the personal declarations of these three great prophetic witnesses of the premortal Jesus
Christ—Nephi, Jacob, and Isaiah. These three doctrinal and visionary voices make clear at the very outset of the
Book of Mormon why it is ‘another testament of Jesus Christ.’ …
“One could argue convincingly that the primary purpose for recording, preserving, and then translating the small
plates of Nephi was to bring forth to the dispensation of the fulness of times the testimony of these three
witnesses. Their writings constitute a full 135 of the  pages from the small plates. By the time one has read
Nephi, Jacob, and Isaiah in these first pages, a strong foundation has been laid for what Nephi called ‘the
doctrine of Christ’” (Christ and the New Covenant *1997+, 33–35).
Nephi and his brother Jacob quoted Isaiah extensively, and they both declared that we
should liken Isaiah’s teachings to ourselves (see 1 Nephi 19:23; 2 Nephi 6:5). Although
Isaiah lived long ago and often spoke about people, places, and things that are unfamiliar
to us, his teachings are relevant to our lives today. As you and your students search his
words, you will find that his warnings, words of encouragement, and declarations about
the Savior are as timely now as they were when he wrote them.
Each of the Isaiah chapters has its own message. However, some themes stretch through
more than one chapter. This lesson, covering 2 Nephi 11–16, refers to the great judgments
that will befall the wicked in the last days and the Lord’s promise to remember His people
in those days. The next lesson covers 2 Nephi 17–24, which contain Isaiah’s prophecies of
how the promise to preserve the humble and obedient followers of Jesus Christ will be
fulfilled. Chapter 12 covers 2 Nephi 25–27, which include Nephi’s own commentary and
help bring clarity and understanding to the Isaiah writings, removing many stumbling
blocks readers may face. Nephi also testifies that the coming forth of the Book of Mormon
helps fulfill specific prophecies of Isaiah.
Do not be overly concerned about the meanings of symbolic language for now. Instead, try
to see how Isaiah’s message applies in your lives.
All things that God has given us typify Jesus Christ. 2Nephi 11:4-8
or symbolizeAt times, Isaiah wrote using symbols or types. Nephi spoke of the
importance of understanding that all things typify Jesus Christ. The word
typifymeans “to represent by an image, form, model, or resemblance” (Noah Webster’s First Edition
of an American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828 ). These things serve as a reminder
or an emblem of Christ. The scriptures constantly bear witness of and teach about Jesus Christ.
Some examples of types include the sacrifice of a male lamb without blemish, which was a
“similitude of the sacrifice of the Only Begotten of the Father” (Moses 5:7; see also Leviticus 1:3–5).
The symbols of the sacrament bread and wine represent or typify the atoning sacrifice (see Moroni
4:3; 5:2). These reminders of the Lord and His saving mission for mankind are designed to instruct
us and help us draw closer to the Lord our Redeemer.
Why do you think the Lord uses types, or
symbols, to teach His people?
Why is it helpful for us to be aware of this
What types of Jesus Christ have you seen
in the scriptures? in your life? in the world
2 Nephi 11
4 Behold, my soul delighteth in proving unto my people the truth of the coming of
Christ; for, for this end hath the claw of Moses been given; and all things which
have been given of God from the beginning of the world, unto man, are the
typifying of him.
5 And also my soul delighteth in the covenants of the Lord which he hath made to
our fathers; yea, my soul delighteth in his grace, and in his justice, and power, and
mercy in the great and eternal plan of deliverance from death.
6 And my soul delighteth in proving unto my people that save Christ should come
all men must perish.
7 For if there be no Christ there be no God; and if there be no God we are not, for
there could have been no creation. But there is a God, and he is Christ, and he
cometh in the fulness of his own time.
Which of these statements about Jesus Christ
are the most important to you? Why?
2 Nephi 11:8 And now I writesome of the words of Isaiah, that whoso of my people shall
see these words may lift up their hearts and rejoice for all men. Now these are the words,
and ye may liken them unto you and unto all men.
According to this verse, why did Nephi share the words of Isaiah with us?
2 Nephi 12–24 and 27 contain
words of Isaiah. Nephi’s testimony
of the Savior in 2 Nephi 11 prepares
us to look for types of Jesus Christ in
Isaiah’s teachings. Nephi’s testimony
also prepares us to understand
Isaiah’s teachings concerning the
Lord’s work in the latter days. As you
read these chapters, look for ways
these teachings can change your
lives and helpyoupreparefor the
great events of the last days.
Elder Gene R. Cook:
"It is absolutely essential to
apply the scriptures to your-
self...[when] we're searching to apply them to
our own hearts is when they really come
alive...If you really want to come unto the
Lord, if you really want to draw close to Him
and find out how He is, how He works, how He
thinks, what He counts to be important and
what He doesn't, you'll find it in the
scriptures." (LDS Church News, Deseret News,
Nov. 19, 1988)
God will bring judgment and peace in the last days. 2Nephi 12-14
When Isaiah speaks to the house of Jacob in 2 Nephi 12–13, he is speaking to all the house of Israel,
in his day and in the latter days. In his prophecy about the daughters of Zion, he refers to members
of the Church who become prideful and worldly (the daughters of Zion are part of the house of
Jacob; see Isaiah 3:16–26). When he speaks of “them that are escaped” (2 Nephi 14:2), he refers to
members of the house of Israel who, through the Atonement of Jesus Christ and their own
righteousness, will escape the judgments that come upon the wicked. (See Nephi’s commentary in 2
Nephi 25–26 and 28–30.)
2 Nephi 12:5; 13:1-15
“House of Jacob”
The house of Israel,
including Judah and
2 Nephi 13:16-26
“Daughters of Zion”
Members of the Church
who become prideful and
2 Nephi 14:2-6
“Them that are escaped”
Righteous members of
the house of Israel in the
Examine the consequences of the actions of three groups of people. Fill the chart provided.
2 Nephi 12:8 Their land is also full of
idols; they worship the work of their
own hands, that which their own
fingers have made.
What are some forms of idolatry today?
Isaiah said that one reason the house of Jacob would suffer such terrible consequences was
that their land was “full of idols”.
Spencer W. Kimball:
Modern idols or false gods can take such forms as clothes, homes,
businesses, machines, automobiles, pleasure boats, and numerous other
material deflectors from the path to godhood. …
Intangible things make just as ready gods. Degrees and letters and titles can
become idols. …
Many people build and furnish a home and buy the automobile first—and then find they “cannot afford”
to pay tithing. Whom do they worship? Certainly not the Lord of heaven and earth. …
Many worship the hunt, the fishing trip, the vacation, the weekend picnics and outings. Others have as
their idols the games of sport, baseball, football, the bullfight, or golf. …
Still another image men worship is that of power and prestige. … These gods of power, wealth, and
influence are most demanding and are quite as real as the golden calves of the children of Israel in the
And so it often seems to be with people, having such a firm grasp on things of the world—that which is
telestial—that no amount of urging and no degree of emergency can persuade them to let go in favor of
that which is celestial. Satan gets them in his grip easily. If we insist on spending all our time and resources
building up for ourselves a worldly kingdom, that is exactly what we will inherit.
“Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods before Me”, Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Spencer W. Kimball, (2006)
Golden Calves Today (Refusing to Worship Today’s Graven Images BY DENNIS LARGEY)
President Spencer W. Kimball wrote: “There are unfortunately millions today who prostrate themselves before images
of gold and silver and wood and stone and clay. But the idolatry we are most concerned with here is the conscious
worshipping of still other gods. Some are of metal and plush and chrome, of wood and stone and fabrics. They are not
in the image of God or of man, but are developed to give man comfort and enjoyment, to satisfy his wants, ambitions,
passions and desires. Some are in no physical form at all, but are intangible.” 2
I recently asked some Latter-day Saints, “What is the modern application of the second commandment?” The
following represent a sample of the responses I received:
• “The scriptures say to have thoughts of God always within our hearts. Many people now fill their hearts with
thoughts of riches, power, and fame. They worship their possessions, loving things without life.”
• “We serve ourselves much too often when we should be serving the Lord. We must not worship our time—a graven
image that takes the place of God in many cases. God asks us to sacrifice our time, making sure that he, not our own
selfish interests, is first in our lives.”
• “The graven images I see people worshipping areclothing, cars, homes, hobbies, and recreation. The fact that I spend
more time deciding what to wear each morning than I do in prayer is very telling.”
• “Alma 1:32 says, ‘Those who did not belong to their church did indulge themselves in sorceries, and in idolatry or
idleness.’ This is something that I had never contemplated before. Idleness as a possible form of idolatry, or that it
could be equated as such.”
• “Money is one of the most common images that people bow down to today. They bow down by giving up their
integrity and honesty in dealing with others in order to obtain it. They bend their principles as they are bowing down.”
• “Too often people make men their graven images. Because we are afraid of the opinion of others, we won’t serve
others or be kind to those society looks down on. We worship others’ praise and honor; we desire above all else the
prestige others can give us. We want the right titles and awards. We want to wear the right clothing. We want to fit
But there are always consequences—serious consequences. Idol worship gratifies present desires
and keeps people from seeking eternal riches. Idol worship takes our minds off God.
Worshipping modern graven images still results in confusion, corruption, and a divided heart. Since
material possessions cannot save, trusting in them will eventually lead to a personal scattering away
from God and his kingdom. The following true accounts illustrate the consequences of placing worldly
things above God in our lives:
• “I have a friend who was a gifted salesman, but he started to use his Sundays for selling. As he
became more successful, he lost his testimony. He now belittles ‘foolish’ religious traditions. This has
affected his entire family. They aren’t a happy family, but they do have money. He worshipped money,
and now he is cursed with it.”
• “A boy I know has devoted his life to body building, and he now has huge muscles. He didn’t go on a
mission because he was afraid of losing the physique he was developing.”
• “I know of a lady who, as a teenager, put alcohol and drugs above the Lord. Her obsessions later
ruined her marriage and were passed on to her children. In time, she realized she needed to change
her life. She came back to the Church and eventually went to the temple. But the damage was already
done. Her worship of graven images is reflected in the way her children are living their lives.”
CONSEQUENCES OF WORSHIPPING GRAVEN IMAGES
GUARDING AGAINST IDOLATRY
Key to countering the influence of modern images is keeping our hearts centered on God. If we do, we will live
our lives in harmony with life’s real purposes.
To combat idol worship, therefore, we need to focus on things that help
us to “always remember” the Lord. Brigham Young offered one remedy:
“We are under the necessity of assembling here from Sabbath to Sabbath,
and in Ward meetings, and besides, have to call our solemn assemblies,
to teach, talk, pray, sing, and exhort. What for? To keep us in remembrance
of our God and our holy religion. Is this custom necessary? Yes; because we
are so liable to forget—so prone to wander, that we need to have the Gospel
sounded in our ears as much as once, twice, or thrice a week, or, behold, we
will turn again to our idols.”
As we “meet together often” in the Church, we focus on positive images that
instruct, intensify, and call attention to important aspects of the mission of
Christ. (D&C 20:75.) For example, remembering that Jesus is the “rock of our
salvation,” the “true shepherd,” “the redeemer,” “the living water,” “the King
of kings” brings to mind strong images of our relationship with Christ. (See 2 Ne.
9:45; Hel. 15:13; D&C 18:11; Jer. 2:13; 1 Tim. 6:14–15.) A savior is one who
saves; a rock is an immovable object; a shepherd is one who nurtures his flock; and so forth. Feasting upon such
images separates our minds from the alternate images Satan would have us worship and imitate.
Anything can become a “golden calf.” When activities or material blessings become so important that by turning to them we turn
from God, we are breaking the second commandment. We are walking “in [our] own way, and after the image of [our] own god,
whose image is in the likeness of the world, and whose substance is that of an idol, which waxeth old and shall perish.” (D&C 1:16;
emphasis added.) The solution is to prioritize our loyalties and turn our affections back to God.
Isaiah prophesied of the blessings that would come to “them that are escaped of
Israel” and to those whose filth has been washed away by the Lord.
2 Nephi 14
2 In that day shall the branch of the Lord be beautiful and
glorious; the fruit of the earth excellent and comely to them that
are escaped of Israel.
4 When the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the
daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem
from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment and by the
spirit of burning.
In what ways is overcoming temptation like an escape? In what ways does the Lord help us escape?
“The past several verses have been speaking of the dawn of the Millenial day, when evil is destroyed and the glory
of the Lord redeems Zion and Jerusalem. In order for that glorious day to come, the wicked must first be
destroyed. Those that are left must be holy enough to dwell on the newly cleansed earth, 'when the Lord shall
have washed away the filth of the daughters of Jerusalem.' During the Millenium, the earth will exist in a
terrestrial state. Only those worthy of a terrestrial (or higher) glory will be allowed to live at that time. DC 88:98
speaks of the celestial inhabitants of the earth during the Millenium; DC 88:99 speaks of the terrestrial
inhabitants. The next two verses describe those of a telestial glory and those of Perdition which will not be
allowed on the earth during the Millenium, 'they live not again until the thousand years are ended, neither again,
until the end of the earth.’” gospeldoctrine.com
Nephi said that the words of Isaiah could help his people “lift up their hearts and rejoice
for all men”.
2 Nephi 11:8 And now I write some of the words of Isaiah, that
whoso of my people shall see these words may lift up their
hearts and rejoice for all men. Now these are the words, and ye
may liken them unto you and unto all men.
What are some things that can lead us to rejoice? How do the words of Isaiah help us rejoice?
Isaiah prophesied of daughters of Zion who would allow themselves to be overcome by
How can we guard against worldly attitudes in our lives?
How can the words of Isaiah help us as we make important
decisions in our lives? How can the words of Isaiah help us live
in the perilous times of the last days?
Isaiah prophesied that the Lord would lift
an ensign to gather Israel. 2Nephi 12:1-3; 15:13-30
a banner or symbol or flag
which was raised in a high
place, so that everyone can
see it--like a beacon,
indicating the principles or
ideas around which the
people could rally or gather.
After describing some of the consequences of Israel’s
apostasy, Isaiah gives specific warnings.
2 Nephi 15:
18 Wo unto them that draw iniquity with cords of vanity, and sin as
it were with a cart rope;
19 That say: Let him make speed, hasten his work, that we may
see it; and let the counsel of the Holy One of Israel draw nigh and
come, that we may know it.
20 Wo unto them that call evil good, and good evil, that put
darkness for light, and light for darkness, that put bitter for sweet,
and sweet for bitter!
21 Wo unto the wise in their own eyes and prudent in their own
22 Wo unto the mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to
mingle strong drink;
23 Who justify the wicked for reward, and take away the
righteousness of the righteous from him!
In this passage, Isaiah
repeats the word wo,
which refers to sorrow
Isaiah prophesied that the Lord would lift an ensign to gather Israel
2 Nephi 15:26 And he will lift up an ensign to the
nations from far, and will hiss unto them from the
end of the earth; and behold, they shall come
with speed swiftly; none shall be weary nor
stumble among them.
President Joseph Fielding Smith defined the meaning of the ensign
spoken of by Isaiah:
“Over 125 years ago, in the little town of Fayette, Seneca County,
New York, the Lord set up an ensign to the nations. It was in
fulfillment of the prediction made by the Prophet Isaiah, which I
have read [Isaiah 11:11–12]. That ensign was the Church of Jesus
Christ of Latter-day Saints, which was established for the last time,
never again to be destroyed or given to other people [see Daniel
2:44]. It was the greatest event the world has seen since the day
that the Redeemer was lifted upon the cross and worked out the
infinite and eternal atonement. It meant more to mankind than
anything else that has occurred since that day” (Doctrines of
A significant part of what Isaiah saw will begin to
be fulfilled (“shall come to pass”) in a time
period focusing upon another location in the
earth, namely the latter-day Zion of The Church
of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with
headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Elder LeGrand Richards (1886–1983) of the
Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke of the
fulfillment of this prophecy:
“Isaiah saw the mountain of the Lord’s house
established in the top of the mountains in the
latter days. …
“How literally that has been fulfilled, in my way
of thinking, in this very house of the God of
Jacob right here on this block! This temple, more
than any other building of which we have any
record, has brought people from every land to
learn of his ways and walk in his paths” (in
Conference Report, Apr. 1971, 143; or Ensign,
June 1971, 98).
Gordon B. Hinckley:
“Ever since the Salt Lake Temple was dedicated, we
have interpreted that scripture from Isaiah … as
applying to this sacred house of the Lord. And of this
place, since the day of its dedication, an ever-
increasing number from across the world have said in
effect, ‘Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of
the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob, that He
might teach us of His ways, that we might walk in His
“I believe and testify that it is the mission of this
Church to stand as an ensign to the nations and a light
to the world. We have had placed upon us a great, all-
encompassing mandate from which we cannot shrink
nor turn aside. We accept that mandate and are
determined to fulfill it, and with the help of God we
shall do it” (in Conference Report, Oct. 2003, 86; or
Ensign, Nov. 2003, 82–83).
How do latter-day temples
fulfill the prophecy in 2
The term "mountain of the Lord's house" refers to
the temple. But which temple is Isaiah speaking
about? Many of the brethren have interpreted this
passage as having reference to the building of
temples amongst the Rocky Mountains, specifically,
the Salt Lake Temple. Certainly, many have come to
Salt Lake from all over the world to learn of His
ways and walk in His paths. Elder LeGrand Richards,
while speaking of this prophecy said, "Can you go
anywhere in the world and find a record of the
fulfillment of that promise of Isaiah except in the
gathering of the Latter-day Saints here to these
valleys of the mountains?" (BYU Speeches of the
Year, Feb, 10, 1960, p. 9) If this statement is true
regarding the Salt Lake Temple, it must also refer to
the many other temples now in use.
A little about 2 Nephi 16…
Isaiah sees the Lord.
Isaiah’s sins are forgiven.
Isaiah is called to warn,
cry repentance, and
2 Nephi 16:8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: Whom shall
I send, and who will go for us? Then I said: Here am I; send me.
What significance do you find in the fact that Isaiah’s words were
the same as the Savior’s words in the premortal council?
Isaiah is often used in his own prophecies as a type for Christ. This
is an excellent example. Obviously, the phrase, 'whom shall I send,'
has reference to the discussion had in the beginning when the
Savior was chosen to be the Redeemer of the world. The Pearl of
Great Price teaches this doctrine:
'And the Lord said: Whom shall I send? And one answered like
unto the Son of Man: Here am I, send me. And another answered
and said: Here am I, send me. And the Lord said: I will send the
When considering Isaiah as the one who said, Here am I; send me,
we must understand that Isaiah was volunteering for the mission of
preaching to the house of Israel. His mission was a type for Christ.
His people were like those of Christ's day-they had ears but were
spiritually deaf, and they had eyes but were spiritually blind.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles:
“Isaiah is by every standard the messianic prophet of the Old Testament and as such is the most
penetrating prophetic voice in that record. He, more than any other witness in the Old World, saw
and wrote and prophesied of the Savior’s coming both in the meridian of time and again in the
latter days. He is quoted more often in the New Testament, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and
Covenants, and contemporary documents such as the Dead Sea Scrolls than any other Old World
“It would seem even from Isaiah’s name (‘Jehovah saves’ or ‘The Lord is salvation’) that he was
prepared at birth—or, more accurately, from before birth—to testify of the Messiah, bearing
witness of the divinity of Christ in anticipation of both his first and second comings” (Christ and the
New Covenant: The Messianic Message of the Book of Mormon , 75–76, 77–78).
What did Elder Holland teach about the
significance of Isaiah’s life and ministry?
What was Isaiah foreordained to do?