2 Nephi 31 to 33 – “This Is the Way”

March 2, 2020 to March 8, 2020

In Nephi’s closing chapters, he capsulizes the doctrine of Christ, drawing from earlier visions and from Isaiah.

“Understanding Christian Baptism through the Book of Mormon,” Noel B. Reynolds, BYU Studies, Vol. 51, no. 2
In 2 Nephi 31, Nephi beholds the baptism of Jesus Christ and understands it to be a model for all baptism. Noel Reynolds proposes that this chapter is foundational in understanding that baptism should be seen as a witness to God of one’s repentance. We see baptism in context of the full doctrine of Christ.

“1 and 2 Nephi: An Inspiring Whole,” Frederick W. Axelgard, BYU Studies, Vol. 26, no. 4
The books 1 and 2 Nephi should be seen as a whole. This article spells out thematic developments and organizational structure.

“The Doctrine of Christ in 2 Nephi 31-32 as an Approach to the Vision of the Tree of Life,” Jared T. Parker, The Things Which My Father Saw: Approaches to Lehi’s Dream and Nephi’s Vision
Nephi’s description of the way to return to God’s presence in 2 Nephi 31-32 apparently draws from elements of the vision of the tree of life.

“Nephi’s Later Reflections on the Tree of Life Vision,” Michael B. Parker, Insights 22:5
Nephi’s preaching at the end of 2 Nephi is influenced by his vision of the tree of life. Phrases in 1 Nephi 8:30 appear in 2 Nephi 31:20.

“The Divine Council in the Hebrew Bible and the Book of Mormon,” Stephen O. Smoot, Studia Antiqua
When Nephi declares that he speaks with the tongue of angels (2 Ne. 32:2), it is thought that Nephi is alluding to admittance into the divine council, or admittance into the heavenly court of God. Stephen Smoot explores the concept of the divine council in the Hebrew Bible and Book of Mormon in order to provide greater context for theophanic experiences.

“How Did Nephi Read Isaiah as a Witness of Christ’s Coming?” Book of Mormon Central
As Nephi concludes his record, he powerfully testifies of Christ using Isaiah as inspiration. This KnoWhy discusses how Nephi used Isaiah to help him testify of Christ.

“Nephi’s Farewell,” H. Dean Garrett, Second Nephi, The Doctrinal Structure
Nephi’s farewell statement (2 Ne. 33) shows his love and willingness to sacrifice for his people and his personal relationship with the Lord. We learn why he kept records, how he felt about his writings, and what effect he thought they would have on those who would read them.

“The Doctrine of Christ: 2 Nephi 31-32,” by Larry E. Dahl, in The Book of Mormon: Second Nephi, the Doctrinal Structure
Nephi laid out the steps to eternal life (the doctrine of Christ) in 2 Nephi 31: 1. Have real intent; 2. Seek understanding; 3. Repent; 4. Be baptized and be willing to take the name of Christ; 5. Be baptized with the Holy Spirit; 6. Press forward; 7. Endure to the end; 8. Receive the promise of eternal life. This article explores the meaning and purpose of each step.

“The Book of Mormon, Designed for Our Day: Annual FARMS Lecture,” Richard Dilworth Rust, Review of Books on the Book of Mormon 2:1
In 2 Nephi 33:6-10, Rust sees a poem of Nephi’s testimony and admonition to future generations.

“Parellelism, Merismus, and Difrasismo,” Allen J. Christensen, John L. Sorenson, and Angela M. Crowell, Reexploring the Book of Mormon
Nephi teaches that the Lord speaks to men “according to their language” (2 Ne. 31:3). We find that the Lord uses literary devices and techniques that are familiar to people so that they can better communicate the message of the Lord. For example, the Book of Mormon utilizes both Hebrew and Mesoamerican literary devices to communicate more effectively and artfully the message of the Lord.