Nephi slays Laban at the Lord’s command and then secures the plates of brass by stratagem—Zoram chooses to join Lehi’s family in the wilderness. About 600–592 B.C.
1 And it came to pass that I spake unto my brethren, saying: Let us go up again unto Jerusalem, and let us be afaithful in keeping the commandments of the Lord; for behold he is mightier than all the earth, then why not bmightier than Laban and his fifty, yea, or even than his tens of thousands?
2 Therefore let us go up; let us be astrong like unto Moses; for he truly spake unto the waters of the bRed Sea and they divided hither and thither, and our fathers came through, out of captivity, on dry ground, and the armies of Pharaoh did follow and were drowned in the waters of the Red Sea.
3 Now behold ye know that this is true; and ye also know that an aangel hath spoken unto you; wherefore can ye bdoubt? Let us go up; the Lord is able to cdeliver us, even as our fathers, and to destroy Laban, even as the Egyptians.
7 Nevertheless I went forth, and as I came near unto the house of Laban I beheld a man, and he had fallen to the earth before me, for he was adrunken with wine.
9 And I beheld his asword, and I drew it forth from the sheath thereof; and the hilt thereof was of pure gold, and the workmanship thereof was exceedingly fine, and I saw that the blade thereof was of the most precious steel.
10 And it came to pass that I was aconstrained by the Spirit that I should kill Laban; but I said in my heart: Never at any time have I shed the blood of man. And I shrunk and would that I might not slay him.
11 And the Spirit said unto me again: Behold the aLord hath bdelivered him into thy hands. Yea, and I also knew that he had sought to take away mine own life; yea, and he would not hearken unto the commandments of the Lord; and he also had ctaken away our property.
14 And now, when I, Nephi, had heard these words, I remembered the words of the Lord which he spake unto me in the wilderness, saying that: aInasmuch as thy seed shall keep my bcommandments, they shall cprosper in the dland of promise.
15 Yea, and I also thought that they could not keep the commandments of the Lord according to the alaw of Moses, save they should have the law.
16 And I also knew that the alaw was engraven upon the plates of brass.
18 Therefore I did obey the voice of the Spirit, and took Laban by the hair of the head, and I smote off his head with his own asword.
20 And after I had done this, I went forth unto the treasury of Laban. And as I went forth towards the treasury of Laban, behold, I saw the aservant of Laban who had the keys of the treasury. And I commanded him in the voice of Laban, that he should go with me into the treasury.
22 And he spake unto me concerning the aelders of the Jews, he knowing that his master, Laban, had been out by night among them.
24 And I also spake unto him that I should carry the engravings, which were upon the aplates of brass, to my elder brethren, who were without the walls.
28 And it came to pass that when Laman saw me he was exceedingly frightened, and also Lemuel and Sam. And they fled from before my presence; for they supposed it was Laban, and that he had slain me and had sought to take away their lives also.
31 And now I, Nephi, being a man large in stature, and also having received much astrength of the Lord, therefore I did seize upon the servant of Laban, and held him, that he should not flee.
34 And I also spake unto him, saying: Surely the Lord hath acommanded us to do this thing; and shall we not be diligent in keeping the commandments of the Lord? Therefore, if thou wilt go down into the wilderness to my father thou shalt have place with us.
35 And it came to pass that aZoram did take courage at the words which I spake. Now Zoram was the name of the servant; and he promised that he would go down into the wilderness unto our father. Yea, and he also made an oath unto us that he would tarry with us from that time forth.
38 And it came to pass that we took the plates of brass and the servant of Laban, and departed into the wilderness, and journeyed unto the atent of our father.