Jacob acknowledges in the preceding verse that he has already told them “exceedingly many things.” In this verse he adds that he has told them about “all things which are written, from the creation of the world.” Why does he need to keep teaching them? Hasn’t he said enough? There are at least 3 reasons why his desire for their welfare would lead him to keep teaching:
- To know is not necessarily to do. Since the ultimate goal of the gospel is for us to become what God wants us to be, it follows that we will hear some gospel principles repeatedly as we work through the process of mastering them, even principles which we may already understand rationally but which we may not have fully internalized. As Spencer W. Kimball taught Naomi Randall when he heard her song “I Am a Child of God,” we need to be taught not only all that we must know, but more importantly all that we must do to live with Him someday.
- We are forgetful. Our memory fades. Concepts and facts which were once clear to us become hazy and distant with time. The only way for us to keep the most important things in our working memory is to review them regularly. Otherwise, they become less relevant to our daily life and harder to recall when needed.
- The gospel is rich with meaning. Every time we study and ponder a gospel principle, we have the opportunity to understand it more deeply. As we teach others, new insights come to us that we might not have considered previously. Even when we think we have mastered a principle, there are likely facets of it which we do not yet understand.