These pages mark a major transition in the Book of Mormon. Nephi’s final words are found in chapters 32-33. Once again we find his great anxiety for our welfare and his pattern for plainness (2 Nephi 32:8; 33:3-9). His final words are an invitation to “hearken unto these words and believe in Christ” (2 Nephi 33:10-15). A more simple, yet perfectly suited ending could not have been better for Nephi’s writings: “for thus hath the Lord commanded me, and I must obey” (2 Nephi 33:15). No wonder Nephi’s name seems to spring from our lips when asked about examples of obedience!
Jacob inherits Nephi’s Small Plates and is given instruction on what should be recorded on them (Jacob 1:1-4). Jacob is not at all new to the Book of Mormon. In fact, much of 2 Nephi is actually Nephi recording Jacob’s teaching and preaching. Many of our favorite teachings from 2 Nephi came from Jacob (2 Nephi 9 is just one example). As Nephi dies, Jacob takes the ecclesiastical reign of the Nephite society. Unfortunately, the Nephites are struggling with quite a few spiritual problems (Jacob 1:15-16). Reminiscent of many prophets before, and others yet to come, Jacob uses the Temple as his stage for calling the people to repentance. Nephi’s “plainness” seems to have had an effect on his preaching as well (Jacob 2:11). Jacob must now help the people overcome their love of riches (v. 12), their pride (vv. 13-21), and their immorality (vv. 23-35). It’s a tough job, but Jacob is up to the task (Jacob 1:17-19; 2:1-7)
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