Mormonism, Mormon studies, Book of Mormon, Nephite society


In the ninetieth year of the reign of the judges, four years after the ministry of Samuel the Lamanite, the “great signs and wonders” that he had prophesied of concerning the coming of Christ began to appear. Yet even as they convinced some, others expressed doubt as to what the signs meant, believing instead that the coming of Christ was a “wicked tradition, which has been handed down unto us by our fathers, to cause us that we should believe in some great and marvelous thing which should come to pass . . . therefore they can keep us in ignorance” (Hel. 16:20).1 As the reference suggests, the belief in the coming of Christ, a prophecy that had defined the Nephite people since their arrival in the New World, was now viewed by some as propaganda that was deliberately espoused and perpetuated by others to keep the general population compliant under the current leadership.

Original Publication Citation

Seek Ye Words of Wisdom: Studies of the Book of Mormon, Bible, and Temple in honor of Stephen D. Ricks

Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Permanent URL


Interpreter Foundation and BYU Religious Education




Religious Education


Ancient Scripture

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor