34 Now the last words which are written by Ether are these: Whether the Lord will that I be translated, or that I suffer the will of the Lord in the flesh, it mattereth not, if it so be that I am saved in the kingdom of God. Amen.
The phrase “it mattereth not” appears 11 times in the Book of Mormon. Most of the occurrences of the phrase represent prophetic authors prioritizing important principles over concerns that are of less importance. For example:
|Author||It Mattereth Not…||
Because I’m Focused on…
|1 Nephi 6:3||Nephi||That I can’t write a complete record of my father’s life||Writing the things of God|
|Jacob 5:8, 13||Zenos (the Lord of the Vineyard)||Where I graft these branches||Preserving the branches so that they can bear fruit|
|Alma 40:5, 8||Alma||Whether people are resurrected all at once or at different times||The fact that everyone will be raised from the dead|
|Alma 58:37||Helaman||That we haven’t received the supplies we need.||Our faith that God will deliver us.|
|Alma 61:9||Pahoran||That you have censured me||The liberty of my people|
|Mormon 8:4||Moroni||Where I go next||Finishing the record of my father and hiding them|
|Ether 12:37||The Lord||How your words are received||The fact that you’ve been faithful|
|Ether 15:34||Ether||Whether I am translated or whether I die||Being saved in the kingdom of God|
Every one of the questions that “mattereth not” could be viewed as a legitimate concern. I can easily imagine people becoming so fixated on them that they completely miss the more important question the writer is focused on. I’m grateful for the examples of all of these authors, including Ether and Moroni in prioritizing the things that matter most.
Today, I will prioritize what I spend my time and my energy on. I will focus my attention on the topics of greatest importance, and I will intentionally set aside issues and concerns which are of lesser importance.