Scriptural Giants: Enos Prays


One day Enos went into the forest to hunt beasts. While he wandered alone among the trees, he began to think about the things that his father, Jacob, the brother of Nephi, had taught him. Just before Jacob had died, he had called Enos to him and told him to take the gold plates and to keep a record on them of the people. Enos had taken the plates and promised that he would obey his father’s command. But he still pondered about many things.

As he walked in the forest, he began to think about eternal life and the joy experienced by the Saints. No longer just words, the teachings of his father began to penetrate Enos’s heart. His soul hungered for the things of righteousness. Overcome by his feelings and thoughts, he knelt down and cried out to God in mighty prayer for the welfare of his soul. He wanted to be forgiven, and he sought help to live a better life. All the rest of the day he prayed. And when night settled over the forest, Enos was still raising his voice in prayer.

After many hours, a voice said to him, “Enos, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou shalt be blessed.”

Enos knew that God cannot lie, and immediately his guilt was swept away and replaced with great joy.

“Lord, how is it done?” Enos asked.

The Lord answered, “Because of thy faith in Christ, whom thou hast never before heard nor seen. And many years pass away before he shall manifest himself in the flesh; wherefore, go to, thy faith hath made thee whole.”

But Enos could not go. Now that he felt the wonderful joy of repentance and forgiveness, he wanted the same things for others. Once more he began to pray, this time for his brethren, the Nephites. With all the energy of his soul, he lifted his voice to heaven on behalf of his people, the Nephites.

While he was praying, the voice came again into Enos’s mind, saying, “I will visit thy brethren according to their diligence in keeping my commandments. I have given unto them this land, and it is a holy land; and I curse it not save it be for the cause of iniquity; wherefore, I will visit thy brethren according as I have said; and their transgressions will I bring down with sorrow upon their own heads.”

When Enos heard these words, his faith was strengthened even more. Once more he prayed long and fervently, pleading that if the Nephites were destroyed, a record would be preserved for the Lamanites so that someday they would come to know the truth. After Enos had prayed for another long time, the Lord said to him, “Thy fathers have also required of me this thing; and it shall be done unto them according to their faith; for their faith was like unto thine.”

Enos was very happy, and finally his soul did rest. But when he returned to the city, he did not rest from laboring for the Lord. From that day forth Enos went among the people of Nephi, prophesying of things to come and testifying of the things that he had heard and seen. He continually urged the people to repent and to keep the Lord’s commandments.

Enos and his people also tried diligently to convert the Lamanites to the true faith of God. But their hatred was so intense that they would not listen.

Finally Enos grew old and gave the records to his son Jarom. Enos had lived a good life and had found out for himself that the words of his father were true. He had come to know his Father in Heaven and his Savior, and he served Them with all his might, mind, and strength.

[illustration] Illustrated by Robert T. Barrett