After describing the final battle between his people and their enemies, the Lamanites, Mormon wrote one final message to the descendants of the Lamanites. His people had been completely destroyed, except for a few who had deserted, a few who had escaped, and twenty four people who were with him. He was devastated, not only because of the tragedy which he had just experienced but because it had been avoidable: If his people had only repented, if they had not rejected their Savior, they could have escaped this outcome.
Mormon’s purpose was to invite the descendants of his enemies to repent and be baptized, so that they could be prepared for the Final Judgment.
- Introduction: I’m writing to the descendants of the people who are still alive (Mormon 7:1).
- Four things you need to know (Mormon 7:2-7):
- Final admonition: Repent and be baptized. Receive the gospel of Christ, as taught by both this book and the Bible. If you believe in Christ and are baptized with water and with the Holy Ghost, “it shall be well with you in the day of judgment” (Mormon 7:8-10).
Mormon’s charity is remarkable to me. How could he have such compassion and concern for the descendants of the people who had just defeated him in battle and massacred his own people? How could he have had any hope for their redemption after seeing so many atrocities (Moroni 9:7-19)?
The answer is this: he had been filled with hope and with charity because of his faith in Jesus Christ (Moroni 7:40-42, 48). As a teenager, he had been “visited of the Lord, and tasted and knew of the goodness of Jesus” (Mormon 1:15). That knowledge carried him through these horrific events and helped him to remain anchored in the gospel of Christ.
Furthermore, he knew what was possible because he had studied the spiritual history of his people. He had become familiar with remarkable leaders like Nephi, King Benjamin, Alma, and Captain Moroni. He had seen the transformation experienced by the Lamanites when they were taught by Ammon and his brothers. Above all, he had learned about the peace and prosperity enjoyed by his people and the Lamanites after the visit of Jesus Christ to the American continent. All of this helped him to keep the current tragedy in perspective.
Mormon’s final message also reminds us how simple the gospel is. In the last three verses, he urges his readers to do four things: believe in Christ, repent, be baptized, and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. As Joseph Smith taught in the fourth Article of Faith, these are the first principles and ordinances of the gospel.
I will respond to Mormon’s message by exercising faith in Jesus Christ, which will enable me to have hope for the future and love for all people.
Blog Posts About Mormon’s Final Message
- What Does the Book of Mormon Add to Our Understanding of the Resurrection? (10/4/2019)
- Who Is the House of Israel? (8/14/2019)
- What Should I Do When I Feel Guilty? (6/24/2019)
- What Does the Book of Mormon Teach About the Resurrection? (4/21/2019)
- How Does the Book of Mormon Complement the Bible? (1/19/2019)
- Lay Hold upon the Gospel of Christ – Mormon 7:8-10 (5/18/2017)
- Repent of All Your Sins and Iniquities – Mormon 7:5 (5/17/2017)
- If Ye Believe This – Mormon 7:9 (11/26/2015)