Sherem denies Christ, contends with Jacob, demands a sign, and is smitten of God—All of the prophets have spoken of Christ and His Atonement—The Nephites lived out their days as wanderers, born in tribulation, and hated by the Lamanites. About 544–421 B.C.
1 And now it came to pass after some years had passed away, there came a man among the people of Nephi, whose name was aSherem.
2 And it came to pass that he began to preach among the people, and to declare unto them that there should be ano Christ. And he preached many things which were flattering unto the people; and this he did that he might boverthrow the doctrine of Christ.
3 And he labored diligently that he might lead away the hearts of the people, insomuch that he did lead away many hearts; and he knowing that I, Jacob, had faith in Christ who should come, he sought much opportunity that he might come unto me.
4 And he was alearned, that he had a perfect knowledge of the language of the people; wherefore, he could use much bflattery, and much power of speech, according to the cpower of the devil.
5 And he had hope to shake me from the faith, notwithstanding the many arevelations and the many things which I had seen concerning these things; for I truly had seen bangels, and they had ministered unto me. And also, I had cheard the voice of the Lord speaking unto me in very word, from time to time; wherefore, I could not be shaken.
6 And it came to pass that he came unto me, and on this wise did he speak unto me, saying: Brother Jacob, I have sought much opportunity that I might speak unto you; for I have heard and also know that thou goest about much, preaching that which ye call the agospel, or the doctrine of Christ.
7 And ye have led away much of this people that they pervert the right way of God, and akeep not the law of Moses which is the right way; and convert the law of Moses into the worship of a being which ye say shall come many hundred years hence. And now behold, I, Sherem, declare unto you that this is bblasphemy; for no man knoweth of such things; for he cannot ctell of things to come. And after this manner did Sherem contend against me.
8 But behold, the Lord God poured in his aSpirit into my soul, insomuch that I did bconfound him in all his words.
9 And I said unto him: Deniest thou the Christ who shall come? And he said: If there should be a Christ, I would not deny him; but I know that there is no Christ, neither has been, nor ever will be.
10 And I said unto him: Believest thou the scriptures? And he said, Yea.
11 And I said unto him: Then ye do not understand them; for they truly testify of Christ. Behold, I say unto you that none of the aprophets have written, nor bprophesied, save they have spoken concerning this Christ.
12 And this is not all—it has been made manifest unto me, for I have heard and seen; and it also has been made manifest unto me by the apower of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, I know if there should be no atonement made all mankind must be blost.
13 And it came to pass that he said unto me: Show me a asign by this power of the Holy Ghost, in the which ye know so much.
14 And I said unto him: What am I that I should atempt God to show unto thee a sign in the thing which thou knowest to be btrue? Yet thou wilt deny it, because thou art of the cdevil. Nevertheless, not my will be done; but if God shall smite thee, let that be a dsign unto thee that he has power, both in heaven and in earth; and also, that Christ shall come. And thy will, O Lord, be done, and not mine.
15 And it came to pass that when I, Jacob, had spoken these words, the power of the Lord came upon him, insomuch that he fell to the earth. And it came to pass that he was nourished for the space of many days.
16 And it came to pass that he said unto the people: Gather together on the morrow, for I shall die; wherefore, I desire to speak unto the people before I shall die.
17 And it came to pass that on the morrow the multitude were gathered together; and he spake plainly unto them and denied the things which he had taught them, and confessed the Christ, and the power of the Holy Ghost, and the ministering of angels.
18 And he spake plainly unto them, that he had been adeceived by the power of the bdevil. And he spake of hell, and of ceternity, and of eternal dpunishment.
19 And he said: I afear lest I have committed the bunpardonable sin, for I have lied unto God; for I denied the Christ, and said that I believed the scriptures; and they truly testify of him. And because I have thus lied unto God I greatly fear lest my case shall be cawful; but I confess unto God.
20 And it came to pass that when he had said these words he could say no more, and he agave up the bghost.
21 And when the multitude had witnessed that he spake these things as he was about to give up the ghost, they were astonished exceedingly; insomuch that the power of God came down upon them, and they were aovercome that they fell to the earth.
22 Now, this thing was pleasing unto me, Jacob, for I had requested it of my Father who was in heaven; for he had heard my cry and answered my prayer.
23 And it came to pass that peace and the alove of God was restored again among the people; and they bsearched the scriptures, and hearkened no more to the words of this wicked man.
24 And it came to pass that many means were devised to areclaim and restore the Lamanites to the knowledge of the truth; but it all was bvain, for they delighted in cwars and dbloodshed, and they had an eternal ehatred against us, their brethren. And they sought by the power of their arms to destroy us continually.
25 Wherefore, the people of Nephi did fortify against them with their arms, and with all their might, trusting in the God and arock of their salvation; wherefore, they became as yet, conquerors of their enemies.
26 And it came to pass that I, Jacob, began to be old; and the record of this people being kept on the aother plates of Nephi, wherefore, I conclude this record, declaring that I have written according to the best of my knowledge, by saying that the time passed away with us, and also our blives passed away like as it were unto us a cdream, we being a dlonesome and a solemn people, ewanderers, cast out from Jerusalem, born in tribulation, in a wilderness, and hated of our brethren, which caused wars and contentions; wherefore, we did mourn out our days.
27 And I, Jacob, saw that I must soon go down to my grave; wherefore, I said unto my son aEnos: Take these bplates. And I told him the things which my brother Nephi had ccommanded me, and he promised obedience unto the commands. And I make an end of my writing upon these plates, which writing has been dsmall; and to the reader I bid farewell, hoping that many of my brethren may read my words. Brethren, adieu.