The Title Page of the Book of Mormon

Book of Mormon Teacher Resource Manual, (2004), 17–18


Introduction

According to the Prophet Joseph Smith, “the title-page of the Book of Mormon is a literal translation, taken from the very last leaf, on the left hand side of the collection or book of plates, which contained the record which has been translated, the language of the whole running the same as all Hebrew writing in general; and that said title page is not by any means a modern composition, either of mine or of any other man who has lived or does live in this generation” (History of the Church, 1:71).

Some Important Gospel Principles to Look For

Note: Prayerfully study each assigned scripture block and consider the principles in this section before preparing your lessons.

  • The Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ. It was written to show what great things the Lord does for His children, to explain His covenants, and to convince all people that Jesus is the Christ (see the title page of the Book of Mormon; see also 2 Nephi 26:12).

Additional Resources

  • Book of Mormon Student Manual: Religion 121 and 122, p. 1.

Suggestions for Teaching

Note: Choose from the ideas in this section, or use some of your own, as you prepare to teach the assigned scripture block.

Title Page of the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ. (20–25 minutes)

To help students understand the purpose of the title page of the Book of Mormon, bring to class three or four books with prefaces or introductions. Ask students what the purpose of each book is. Then read the part of the preface that explains the purpose of the book. One good example is The Miracle of Forgiveness by Elder Spencer W. Kimball, then a member of the Quorum of the Twelve. In his preface, Elder Kimball explains:

“This book is not presented to entertain, but rather it has the serious purpose of presenting scriptures, experiences and exhortations with the hope that thereby many will be enticed to repent of their sins and indiscretions and set out to purify and perfect their lives” ([1969], ix).

Have students turn to the title page of the Book of Mormon and look for the purposes of the Book of Mormon. Write their findings on the board. Read the following statement by President Ezra Taft Benson:

“The major mission of the Book of Mormon, as recorded on its title page, is ‘to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations.’

“The honest seeker after truth can gain the testimony that Jesus is the Christ as he prayerfully ponders the inspired words of the Book of Mormon.

“Over one-half of all the verses in the Book of Mormon refer to our Lord. Some form of Christ’s name is mentioned more frequently per verse in the Book of Mormon than even in the New Testament.

“He is given over one hundred different names in the Book of Mormon. Those names have a particular significance in describing His divine nature” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1987, 101; or Ensign, Nov. 1987, 83).

Ask students if they can give scriptural examples of how the Book of Mormon fulfills its primary mission. As part of the discussion, use the accompanying chart to show that the Book of Mormon is focused on Jesus Christ.

Book of Mormon References to Jesus Christ

Book

References to Names and Titles of Christ

Number of Verses in Book

Number of Verses per Reference

1 Nephi

474

618

1.3

2 Nephi

591

779

1.32

Jacob

156

203

1.3

Enos

22

27

1.23

Jarom

8

15

1.88

Omni

20

30

1.5

Words of Mormon

15

18

1.2

Mosiah

492

785

1.6

Alma

1,013

1,975

1.95

Helaman

225

497

2.21

3 Nephi

293

788

2.69

4 Nephi

42

49

1.17

Mormon

188

227

1.21

Ether

220

433

1.97

Moroni

166

163

0.98

Total

3,925

6,607

1.68

(Adapted from Susan Easton Black, Finding Christ through the Book of Mormon [1987], 16.)

Help students understand that the authors of the Book of Mormon make reference to Jesus Christ by one of His names or titles about once every 1.7 verses. By comparison, the New Testament writers use a form of His name an average of once every 2.1 verses (see Susan Easton Black, Finding Christ through the Book of Mormon [1987], 15).

As an example of one specific passage that testifies of Jesus Christ, have students read 2 Nephi 25:23–26. Ask: According to these verses, what is the message of the Book of Mormon prophets?

Share your own testimony of the Book of Mormon as a witness for Jesus Christ.