Sunday, March 13, 2011

Were The Jaredites All Annihilated or Were There Survivors? Part III

Hugh Nibley, John L. Sorenson, and Richard Hauck, and many other Mesoamerican theorists believes do not believe in the total destruction of the Jaredites (see last two posts), and cite numerous reasons why there were Jaredite survivors—however, the scriptures are quiet clear and their purpose in showing this annihilation is quite clear for it illustrates the predictions of the Lord, the prophecies made by his prophets, and the outcome as recorded in scripture. It might be well for these and other Mesoamerican theorists to reconsider the scriptural account of those who recorded events right before their eyes and did so as the Lord commanded, rather than assume they, as scholars and writers, know more.

It should also be considered that when Limhi’s 43-man expeditionary force traveled north to find Zarahemla and ended up in the Land Northward (Mosiah 8:8), so far north they came to a land of many waters—these waters were so far north the distance is referred to as “an exceeding great distance” (Helaman 3:4). Obviously, these men traveled across much of the Land Northward (Mosiah 21:26), yet they never saw another living soul, though they found heaps of bones scattered all over the land, swords, weapons of war, shields, and the 24 plates left by Ether. But they never found another SINGLE PERSON.

Common sense would tell anyone that if there were surviving Jaredites, this group would have encountered someone—at least some sign of living people. Yet all they found were ruins of buildings of all kinds.

In addition, there certainly were no Jaredites living among Limhi’s people for when Ammon arrived from Zarahemla, Limhi wanted to know if the Jaredite writing on the plates of Ether could be interpreted for he was “desirous that these records should be translated into our language” and the reason he wanted them translated was because “they will give us a knowledge of a remnmant of the people who have been destroyed” and that they would “give us a knowledge of this very people who have been destroyed” (Mosiah 8:12). It was Zarahemla who said of the plates he could not read “Doubtless a great mystery is contained within these plates” (Mosiah 8:13).

Certainly there were no Jaredites living in the city of Zarahemla among the Mulekites when Mosiah I arrived, for none there could interpret the stone engraven upon by the Jaredite Coriantumr. So they brought the stone to Mosiah and he interpreted the Jaredite writing (Omni 1:20).

Then, too, when Limhi brought the 24 plates of Ether to Zarahemla (Mosiah 21:27; 22:14), Mosiah translated the record because of “the great anxiety of his people, for they were desirous beyond measure to know concerning those people who had been destroyed” (Mosiah 28:12). Once again, if any Jaredites had been among the Muleites and Nephites in Zarahemla, surely they would have already known what befell their people in the Land Northward. But as Mosiah clearly states no one knew about them except that their bones had been discovered.

Much later, when Alma, in entrusting the records to his son, Helaman, spoke of the 24 plates of Ether and the reasons for the destruction of the Jaredite people in which he said, “these people were destroyed on account of their wickedness and abominations and their murders. For behold, they murdered all the prophets of the Lord who came among them to declare unto them concerning their iniquities” Alma 37:29-30).

The Lord said “I will bring forth out of darkness unto light all their secret works and their abominations, and except they repent, I will destroy them from off the face of the earth and I will bring to light all their secrets and abominations, unto every nation that shall hereafter possess the land” (Alma 37:25). After quoting the Lord, Alma, speaking about the Jaredites to his son Helaman, added, “And now, my son, we see that they did not repent; therefore they have been destroyed, and thus far the word of God has been fulfilled; yea, their secret abominations have been brought out of darkness and made known unto us” (Alma 37:26). Therefore, in talking of the Jaredite nation—they did not repent therefore they were completely destroyed. As the Lord said, “destroyed from off the face of the earth.”

Thus we see that Mosiah and Alma both understood that the Jaredites had been completely destroyed. That should make it quite clear that there were no Jaredite survivors.

(See the next post, “Were The Jaredites All Annihilated or Were There Survivors? Part IV,” to see the confusion created by Mesoamerican theorists over this very explicit fact)

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