Chapter 8

Corrupt judges seek to incite the people against Nephi—Abraham, Moses, Zenos, Zenock, Ezias, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lehi, and Nephi all testified of Christ—By inspiration Nephi announces the murder of the chief judge. About 23–21 B.C.

 And now it came to pass that when Nephi had said these words, behold, there were men who were judges, who also belonged to the secret band of Gadianton, and they were angry, and they cried out against him, saying unto the people: Why do ye not seize upon this man and bring him forth, that he may be condemned according to the crime which he has done?

 Why seest thou this man, and hearest him revile against this people and against our law?

 For behold, Nephi had spoken unto them concerning the corruptness of their law; yea, many things did Nephi speak which cannot be written; and nothing did he speak which was contrary to the commandments of God.

 And those judges were angry with him because he aspake plainly unto them concerning their secret works of darkness; nevertheless, they durst not lay their own hands upon him, for they feared the people lest they should cry out against them.

 Therefore they did cry unto the people, saying: Why do you suffer this man to revile against us? For behold he doth condemn all this people, even unto destruction; yea, and also that these our agreat cities shall be taken from us, that we shall have no place in them.

 And now we know that this is impossible, for behold, we are apowerful, and our cities great, therefore our enemies can have no power over us.

 And it came to pass that thus they did astir up the people to anger against Nephi, and raised contentions among them; for there were some who did cry out: bLet this man alone, for he is a good man, and those things which he saith will surely come to pass except we repent;

 Yea, behold, all the judgments will come upon us which he has testified unto us; for we know that he has testified aright unto us concerning our iniquities. And behold they are many, and he aknoweth as well all things which shall befall us as he knoweth of our iniquities;

 Yea, and behold, if he had not been a prophet he could not have atestified concerning those things.

 10 And it came to pass that those people who sought to destroy Nephi were compelled because of their fear, that they did not lay their hands on him; therefore he began again to speak unto them, seeing that he had gained favor in the eyes of some, insomuch that the remainder of them did fear.

 11 Therefore he was constrained to speak more unto them saying: Behold, my brethren, have ye not read that God gave power unto one man, even Moses, to smite upon the waters of the aRed Sea, and they parted hither and thither, insomuch that the Israelites, who were our fathers, came through upon dry ground, and the waters closed upon the armies of the Egyptians and swallowed them up?

 12 And now behold, if God gave unto this man such power, then why should ye dispute among yourselves, and say that he hath given unto me no power whereby I may aknow concerning the judgments that shall come upon you except ye repent?

 13 But, behold, ye not only deny my words, but ye also deny all the words which have been spoken by our fathers, and also the words which were spoken by this man, Moses, who had such great power given unto him, yea, the words which he hath spoken concerning the coming of the Messiah.

 14 Yea, did he not bear record that the Son of God should come? And as he alifted up the brazen serpent in the wilderness, even so shall he be lifted up who should come.

 15 And as many as should look upon that serpent should alive, even so as many as should look upon the Son of God with faith, having a contrite spirit, might blive, even unto that life which is eternal.

 16 And now behold, Moses did not only testify of these things, but also aall the holy prophets, from his days even to the days of Abraham.

 17 Yea, and behold, aAbraham saw of his coming, and was filled with gladness and did rejoice.

 18 Yea, and behold I say unto you, that Abraham not only knew of these things, but there were amany before the days of Abraham who were called by the border of God; yea, even after the order of his Son; and this that it should be shown unto the people, a great many thousand years before his coming, that even redemption should come unto them.

 19 And now I would that ye should know, that even since the days of Abraham there have been many prophets that have testified these things; yea, behold, the prophet aZenos did testify boldly; for the which he was slain.

 20 And behold, also aZenock, and also bEzias, and also cIsaiah, and dJeremiah, (Jeremiah being that same prophet who testified of the destruction of eJerusalem) and now we know that Jerusalem was destroyed according to the words of Jeremiah. O then why not the Son of God come, according to his prophecy?

 21 And now will you dispute that aJerusalem was destroyed? Will ye say that the bsons of Zedekiah were not slain, all except it were cMulek? Yea, and do ye not behold that the seed of Zedekiah are with us, and they were driven out of the land of Jerusalem? But behold, this is not all—

 22 Our father Lehi was driven out of Jerusalem because he atestified of these things. Nephi also testified of these things, and also almost all of our fathers, even down to this time; yea, they have testified of the bcoming of Christ, and have looked forward, and have rejoiced in his day which is to come.

 23 And behold, he is God, and he is awith them, and he did manifest himself unto them, that they were redeemed by him; and they gave unto him glory, because of that which is to come.

 24 And now, seeing ye know these things and cannot deny them except ye shall lie, therefore in this ye have sinned, for ye have rejected all these things, notwithstanding so many aevidences which ye have received; yea, even ye have received ball things, both things in heaven, and all things which are in the earth, as a witness that they are true.

 25 But behold, ye have rejected the truth, and arebelled against your holy God; and even at this time, instead of laying up for yourselves btreasures in heaven, where nothing doth corrupt, and where nothing can come which is unclean, ye are heaping up for yourselves wrath against the day of cjudgment.

 26 Yea, even at this time ye are ripening, because of your murders and your afornication and wickedness, for everlasting destruction; yea, and except ye repent it will come unto you soon.

 27 Yea, behold it is now even at your doors; yea, go ye in unto the judgment-seat, and search; and behold, your judge is murdered, and he alieth in his blood; and he hath been murdered bby his brother, who seeketh to sit in the judgment-seat.

 28 And behold, they both belong to your secret band, whose aauthor is Gadianton and the evil one who seeketh to destroy the souls of men.