Nephi Subdues His Rebellious Brothers
Gospel Art Picture Kit
After leaving Jerusalem, Lehi’s people traveled in the wilderness for eight years. They came to a land where there was much fruit and wild honey. They pitched their tents by the seashore. (See 1 Nephi 17:1–6.)
After they had been there for many days, the Lord told Nephi, “Arise, and get thee into the mountain” (1 Nephi 17:7). Nephi climbed the mountain and prayed. The Lord said to him, “Construct a ship, after the manner which I shall show thee, that I may carry thy people across these waters” (1 Nephi 17:8).
The Lord told Nephi how to build the ship. When Laman and Lemuel saw that Nephi was going to build a ship, they said he was a fool. They did not want to help Nephi, nor did they believe the Lord had told him to build a ship. (See 1 Nephi 17:9–11, 16–18.)
Laman and Lemuel also thought Lehi was foolish for having led them around in the wilderness when they could have enjoyed their riches in Jerusalem. The brothers insisted that the people back in Jerusalem were righteous, not wicked as Lehi claimed. (See 1 Nephi 17:20–22.)
Nephi told his brothers the Lord had commanded their father to leave Jerusalem. He said they had sought to kill their father. They had seen an angel, and the Lord had spoken to them. But they were “past feeling,” so the Lord’s words did not touch their hearts. Nephi told Laman and Lemuel that he was afraid that they would be cast out of God’s presence forever. (See 1 Nephi 17:44–47.)
Laman and Lemuel became angry and wanted to throw Nephi into the sea. When they tried to grab him, Nephi said, “Touch me not, for I am filled with the power of God” (1 Nephi 17:48). He said if they did touch him, they would die. Nephi said they were to help with the ship Heavenly Father had commanded him to build. (See 1 Nephi 17:48–49.)
For many days Nephi’s brothers did not dare touch him. Then the Lord told Nephi to stretch forth his hand to his brothers. The Lord said they would not die but would feel a shock. This would remind them that the Lord was their God. (See 1 Nephi 17:52–53.)
Nephi reached out his hand to them, and they were shaken. Laman and Lemuel said, “We know of a surety that the Lord is with thee, for we know that it is the power of the Lord that has shaken us” (1 Nephi 17:55). They wanted to worship Nephi, but he told them, “Worship the Lord thy God, and honor thy father and thy mother” (1 Nephi 17:55).
After traveling in the wilderness for eight years, Lehi’s people arrived at the sea. The Lord told Nephi to build a ship to carry the group across the ocean. His brothers Laman and Lemuel said Nephi could not build a ship, and they would not help. They also complained against their father, Lehi. As Nephi accused them of hard hearts, they became angry and wanted to throw him into the sea. Nephi warned his brothers that he was filled with God’s power. If they touched him, they would die. He told them not to complain anymore and to help build the ship. Later the Lord told Nephi to reach out his hand to his brothers so they would receive a shock, reminding them of the Lord’s power. When Nephi did so, Laman and Lemuel were shaken and testified that the Lord was with Nephi.
Artist, Arnold Friberg
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