#BOMSummer DAY 19, 2 Nephi 29-31: “A Divine Gift”

#BOMSummer Day 19, Neal A. Maxwell, “By the Gift and Power of God,” Ensign, Jan. 1997

2 Nephi 29-31

Elder Neal A. Maxwell:

The Book of Mormon’s stated purpose is for “the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ” (title page), making it a divine gift to the entire human family.

In fact, Nephi tells us that God “doeth not anything save it be for the benefit of the world” (2 Ne. 26:24). The knowledge concerning God’s plan of salvation, repeatedly and carefully set forth in the Book of Mormon, can counter the hopelessness and despair of some who lament the human predicament in which they feel mortals are “conceived without consent” and “wrenched whimpering into an alien universe” (Morris L. West, The Tower of Babel [1968], 183). So many mortals desperately need to know there is divine design. No wonder the Lord told Joseph Smith that the Restoration came to increase faith in the earth! (see D&C 1:21).

Originally translated from reformed Egyptian into English, the words of the Book of Mormon are now available in 88 languages. Reaching 100 languages is likely within the next several years. From its first edition of 5,000 copies in 1830 and on through 1995, nearly 78,000,000 copies are estimated to have been distributed.

We know the book’s influence will continue to grow. “Wherefore, these things shall go from generation to generation as long as the earth shall stand; and they shall go according to the will and pleasure of God; and the nations who shall possess them shall be judged of them according to the words which are written” (2 Ne. 25:22). Among other words foretelling the book’s growing influence are these: “The day cometh that the words of the book which were sealed shall be read upon the house tops” (2 Ne. 27:11). Hence the Book of Mormon’s best days still lie ahead! (“By the Gift and Power of God”, Ensign, Jan. 1997)

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