Sun Dublan
Between the Lines  

I have long been entrigued with intresting stories of the Book of Mormon. As we have read the Book of Mormon together my mind has been busy between the lines, asking many questions and wondering what happened to those ancient people. First comes the story of the Jaredites traveling in their big wooden two wheeled carts, with giant solid wooden wheels. What did they pull them with? Was it oxen, horses, or elephants? Can you imagine that big group creeking along driving their many flocks and herds. Were their children riding in the carts or were they helping the women driving the many animals that the Lord had told them to gather to gather.

  1. AND it came to pass that Jared and his brother, and their families, and also the friends of Jared and his brother and their families, went down into the valley which was northward, (and the name of the valley was Nimrod, being called after the mighty hunter) with their flocks which they had gathered together, male and female, of every kind.
  2. And they did also lay snares and catch fowls of the air; and they did also prepare a vessel, in which they did carry with them the fish of the waters.
  3. And they did also carry with them deseret, which, by interpretation, is a honey bee; and thus they did carry with them swarms of bees, and all manner of that which was upon the face of the land, seeds of every kind.
(Book of Mormon | Ether 2:1 - 3)

Can you imagine how they had to work to accommodate all of those animals in the eight barges that they used to cross the ocean? After they arrived in America they populated the land with all of their flocks and herds. I am sure that they did not bring the wild beasts with them. The Lord must have placed them on the land, after the great flood, because the animals were certainly all drowned in the great waters of the flood along with the people.

The Book of Mormon tells us of the many animals that they had in the new promised land.

  1. And the Lord began again to take the curse from off the land, and the house of Emer did prosper exceedingly under the reign of Emer; and in the space of sixty and two years they had become exceedingly strong, in so much that they became exceedingly rich?
  2. Having all manner of fruit, and of grain, and of silks, and of fine linen, and of gold, and of silver, and of precious things;
  3. And also all manner of cattle, of oxen, and cows, and of sheep, and of swine, and of goats, and also many other kinds of animals which were useful for the food of man.
  4. And they also had horses, and asses, and there were elephants and cureloms and cumoms; all of which were useful unto man, and more especially the elephants and cureloms and cumoms.

We can see by this scripture that they were blessed with all kinds of useful animals both for food and work and transportation. When they became wicked and forgot the Lord, the Lord began to afflict them with a great drouth. This took away not only their source of food from their crops

  1. And it came to pass that there began to be a great dearth upon the land, and the inhabitants began to be destroyed exceedingly fast because of the dearth, for there was no rain upon the face of the earth.
  2. And there came forth poisonous serpents also upon the face of the land, and did poison many people. And it came to pass that their flocks began to flee before the poisonous serpents, towards the land southward, which was called by the Nephites Zarahemla.
  3. And it came to pass that there were many of them which did perish by the way; nevertheless, there were some which fled into the land southward.
  4. And it came to pass that the Lord did cause the serpents that they should pursue them no more, but that they should hedge up the way that the people could not pass, that whoso should attempt to pass might fall by the poisonous serpents.
  5. And it came to pass that the people did follow the course of the beasts, and did devour the carcasses of them which fell by the way, until they had devoured them all. Now when the people saw that they must perish they began to repent of their iniquities and cry unto the Lord.
  6. (Book of Mormon | Ether 9:30 - 34)

Undoubtedly the animals that got by the Poisonous serpents went into the beautiful grass lands of South America and began to grow in numbers to supply the people that the Lord would bring to that land. When the new people arrived in the land they found that the Lord had prepared it with an abundance of everything that they could use, This is confirmed as we read in 1st Nephi.

  1. And it came to pass that we did begin to till the earth, and we began to plant seeds; yea, we did put all our seeds into the earth, which we had brought from the land of Jerusalem. And it came to pass that they did grow exceedingly; wherefore, we were blessed in abundance.
  2. And it came to pass that we did find upon the land of promise, as we journeyed in the wilderness, that there were beasts in the forests of every kind, both the cow and the ox, and the ass and the horse, and the goat and the wild goat, and all manner of wild animals, which were for the use of men. And we did find all manner of ore, both of gold, and of silver, and of copper.
(Book of Mormon | 1 Nephi 18:24 - 25)

We have to read between the lines to discover what happened to this people. When the Spaniards came to America they were surprised to find that the Indians didn't have any horses or cattle.

In the last struggle between the Nephites and the Lamanites they gathered their people into the cities together with their crops and animals. When the Lamanites surrounded their cities, the ones inside would have to live on their food which would include eating their animals one by one until they were all gone. The Laminites on the outside would have to live on the wild animals and any that might have been left when the people fled to the cities. In these great wars of extinction the blood shed and carnage went on and on for years.

As I have read of these great wars I have imagined the terrible ferocity of those people who fought and killed each other, men, women and children. How could they be so cruel as to kill a mother and her babies right along with the men and soldiers.

We read about the Jeradites arming their women and children. Can you imagine that?

And it came to pass that when they were all gathered together, every one to the army which he would, with their wives and their children -- both men, women and children being armed with weapons of war, having shields, and breastplates, and head-plates, and being clothed after the manner of war -- they did march forth one against another to battle; and they fought all that day, and conquered not.
(Book of Mormon | Ether 15:15)

Ether had warned Coriantumr that if he did not repent all of his people would be destroyed. He alone would be left to lament the terrible slaughter and mourn his people.

  1. And it came to pass that when the men of Coriantumr had received sufficient strength that they could walk, they were about to flee for their lives; but behold, Shiz arose, and also his men, and he swore in his wrath that he would slay Coriantumr or he would perish by the sword.
  2. Wherefore, he did pursue them, and on the morrow he did overtake them; and they fought again with the sword. And it came to pass that when they had all fallen by the sword, save it were Coriantumr and Shiz, behold Shiz had fainted with the loss of blood.
  3. And it came to pass that when Coriantumr had leaned upon his sword, that he rested a little, he smote off the head of Shiz.
  4. And it came to pass that after he had smitten off the head of Shiz, that Shiz raised up on his hands and fell; and after that he had struggled for breath, he died.
  5. And it came to pass that Coriantumr fell to the earth, and became as if he had no life.
(Book of Mormon | Ether 15:28 - 32)

I can see Coriantumr in my mind as he comes to and struggles out of that awful place strewn with the bodies of his people. How far did he have to wander to find water and food? I can imagine his remorse and suffering as he wandered alone for forty years. He must have suffered greatly for the lack of food and water and loneliness and guilt of his conscience. Finally he found a city of people far to the south in Zarehemla.

I can sense his loneliness even among the people of Zarehemla. He could not understand their language and they could not understand his. In his loneliness he recorded his sad story on a rock and after only nine months living there he died.

Who were these people that he encountered? According to the Book of Mormon they came from Jerusalem at the time when the city was being attacked by the Babalonians. My in between the lines story when the city was surrounded by the Babalonians the servants of king Zedikiah planned their escape. Taking Zedikiah's small son Mulek, they must have escaped through the under ground aqueducts of the city. They were led by the Lord somehow to the promised land to preserve one of kings sons. This story is my own explanation of the Mulekites in Zarehemla.

In comparison the last man of the Nephites was Moroni who wandered nearly 40 years. He not only had to find his own food, but he had to constantly evade the Lamanite bands that were roving the country. He was the prophet that the Lord chose to finish writing on the plates the sad tale of the destruction of His people. His conscience was clear of guilt and his heart was full of love for all people. He lived in peace of mind to finish the work that the Lord had preserved him to do. After all of the carnage and killing, Moroni managed to escape the blood thirsty armies of the Lamanites who were searching every where to kill every Nephite they could find.

We will quote some verses to remind you of his situation.

  1. BEHOLD I, Moroni, do finish the record of my father, Mormon. Behold, I have but few things to write, which things I have been commanded by my father.
  2. And now it came to pass that after the great and tremendous battle at Cumorah, behold, the Nephites who had escaped into the country southward were hunted by the Lamanites, until they were all destroyed.
  3. And my father also was killed by them, and I even remain alone to write the sad tale of the destruction of my people. But behold, they are gone, and I fulfill the commandment of my father. And whether they will slay me, I know not.
  4. Therefore I will write and hide up the records in the earth; and whither I go it mattereth not.
  5. (Book of Mormon | Mormon 8:1 - 4)

Inspite of all he had witnessed and experienced Moroni was still willing to do what the Lord commanded him to do. He certainly witnessed the terrible battles in which over two hundred and twenty thousand men were slain. What about the women and children?

  1. And it came to pass that my people, with their wives and their children, did now behold the armies of the Lamanites marching towards them; and with that awful fear of death which fills the breasts of all the wicked, did they await to receive them.
  2. And it came to pass that they came to battle against us, and every soul was filled with terror because of the greatness of their numbers.
  3. And it came to pass that they did fall upon my people with the sword, and with the bow, and with the arrow, and with the ax, and with all manner of weapons of war.
(Book of Mormon | Mormon 6:7 - 9)

Can you imagine those terrible battles with the men fighting for their lives and for their wives and their children. They were all hewn down and lay to rot in the ground. You can imagine a great stench that was upon the land.

After 21 years of wandering alone Moroni must have picked his way back to the Hill Cumorah through the scattered bones and weapons of war that lay around by the thousands. After obtaining the plates he again recorded some last history.

  1. NOW I, Moroni, after having made an end of abridging the account of the people of Jared, I had supposed not to have written more, but I have not as yet perished; and I make not myself known to the Lamanites lest they should destroy me.
  2. For behold, their wars are exceedingly fierce among themselves; and because of their hatred they put to death every Nephite that will not deny the Christ.
  3. And I, Moroni, will not deny the Christ; wherefore, I wander whithersoever I can for the safety of mine own life.
  4. Wherefore, I write a few more things, contrary to that which I had supposed; for I had supposed not to have written any more; but I write a few more things, that perhaps they may be of worth unto my brethren, the Lamanites, in some future day, according to the will of the Lord.
(Book of Mormon | Moroni 1:1 - 4)
  1. And now I bid unto all, farewell. I soon go to rest in the paradise of God, until my spirit and body shall again reunite, and I am brought forth triumphant through the air, to meet you before the pleasing bar of the great Jehovah, the Eternal Judge of both quick and dead. Amen.
(Book of Mormon | Moroni 10:34)

We hope that you have been busy reading between the lines to fill in all of the details of some of the great stories of the Book of Mormon.

2/18/2006 Webmaster: Troy Bowman