Today I read 2 Nephi 3-4. I was intrigued by 2 Nephi 3. I am curious why Lehi's last words to his son Joseph were all about Joseph Smith. I have not yet come up with an answer but am still pondering this point. It is indeed, as Nephi says, a great prophecy but it is interesting to me that of all the things Lehi could have said unto his son Joseph, that is what he chose to say. If I come up with an answer I will post it here.
The title of this blog is called, the forgotten brother. This is about Nephi's older brother, Sam. Sam is mentioned 4 times in 1 Nephi and only 3 times in 2 Nephi. All we know about him is that he supports Nephi, and in Lehi's dream he also partook of the fruit with Nephi and their mother. It is an interesting phenomenon to note that several parents and even siblings fall into this trap. If a son or a brother is not giving cause for concern, then not as much attention is paid to that person, or so it appears to the person or maybe even those around that person such as we the readers of the Book of Mormon about Sam.
In Nephi's account Sam is never mentioned because he is never rocking the boat, if you will. Laman and Lemuel and their brother's-in-law are always being mentioned because they are causing trouble. And it is dangerous that the attention gets put on those that are causing the most trouble because it can associate attention with bad behavior and can lead to the person craving the attention to doing bad things to get it. Fortunately Sam was older and probably didn't need nearly as much attention. And it may not even have been like it is written, we just don't know. The other thing to keep in mind especially with children is that the perception of how much time gets spent on or with a particular child is important to all children, be it good or bad attention that is spent.
And so it struck me as sad that aside from Nephi himself, Nephi did not record a good example for us to have other than his younger brother Jacob. He only recorded the bad and what we should not be doing. And perhaps that is only the fault of Nephi himself? Who are we to say and judge. The more common take away from 2 Nephi 4 is that Nephi was human with weaknesses and failings and people take comfort in knowing he was human and apparently by his own admonition had a bit of a temper. So maybe Lehi and Sariah did not have a problem with giving attention to Sam, maybe it was only Nephi that had a problem giving attention to Sam, who knows. I guess my point is to give Sam credit and his due and to point out that Sam, and for that matter Zoram, another righteous forgotten person of this period in the Book of Mormon, were righteous good upstanding men and they shouldn't be overlooked by us. They are good examples of the silent, unsung heroes of the world. We should all strive to be righteous as they were. For if they had not been righteous, we would have read about it. ;) Until tomorrow.