There are 2 thoughts on “The Last Nephite Scribes”.

  1. I do not believe Moroni was totally isolated from righteous members of Christ’s Church during his wandering years after the final Nephit/Lamanite battle. I think is anguished statement of being alone was sort of along the lines of a child who has a fight with a parent and cries out, “everybody hates me!”, but the next day doesn’t feel that way at all. When he wrote that sad statement, he definitely was alone, as he was probably still in the areas of battle, but he did not stay there. He himself talks of wandering.
    I think the Book of Mormon gives us evidences of that: (1) Mormon was evidently not the one to ordain Moroni to the ministry. See Moroni 8:2, where he congratulates his son on being so ordained. If Mormon had done it, he would have congratulated his son personally, not in a letter; (2) Mormon writes the letter in Moroni 8 regarding the baptism of little children to some group, which incidently seems to indicate Moromon’s leadership role in the group. That group had to have Priesthood holders who had authority to baptize. If they were not, it would not matter how they performed baptisms, as they would not be effective anyway; (3) Mormon’s discourse on faith, hope, and charity recorded in Moroni 7 was given in a synagogue built for the people to worship in (verse 1). In verse 3, Mormon says he is speaking to “the peaceable followers of Christ,” which indicates there obviously were some Christians still around–possibly in the “north countries” where Mormon lived till taken south by his father; (4) As Moroni finishes his father’s book, he bemoans the fact he can’t write more, as he lacks the materials he needs to make the necessary plates–yet he ends up writing more that all of his father’s writings in the abridgement. Moroni not only writes his own book, but also the Book of Ether, and the sealed portion, which is 2/3 of the entire plates Joseph Smith received. That sounds like a lot of plates to have to make or prepare to be able to write on. I have read articles about things that had to be done to prepare the plates. That is not an easy or quickly done task. It would be a little difficult to be on the run while so doing. To me, it seems more logical that he found refuge with a group who helped him and supported him, at least for a time.
    I wish to know what others think about my thoughts on this line.

  2. Moroni need not have remained in harm’s way for long, following the final battle at Ramah-Cumorah. He did have a heavy load to carry on his back (60 lbs of plates, sword, and breastplate), but such loads are normal for modern special operations warriors. It would have taken him about a year to walk to what would one day become upstate New York in order to properly bury his load.

    We know this because others have done it and written about it: John Sorenson describes how David Ingram (a shipwrecked English sailor) made the trek with several companions and on foot from Tampico, Mexico, to the border of Canada and Maine in 11 months in the mid-sixteenth century (J. L. Sorenson, Ancient American Setting for the Book of Mormon, 45). However, it could take longer: Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca, a member of the Captain Narvaez Expedition, took 8 years walking across southern North America beginning in 1528 (he was a shipwrecked royal treasurer from Seville, Spain) — see de Vaca’s own account, Castaways, ed. Enrique Pupo-Walker; trans. F. M. Lopez-Morillas (Berkeley: UC Press, 1993).

    Moroni would likely have followed the ancient Hopewell trade network of the Middle Woodland period (see the Smithsonian’s Handbook of North American Indians, 15:44), finding hospitable tribes all along the way. The notion of automatically hostile Amerinds is a common misconception. They were normally kind and generous to strangers passing through.

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