1 Nephi 18:3 — LeGrand Baker — “I did pray oft unto the Lord”

1 Nephi 18:3 

3 And I, Nephi, did go into the mount oft, and I did pray oft unto the Lord; wherefore the Lord showed unto me great things.

Nephi’s purpose is not to tell us all he knows, and as a corollary, his purpose in writing is not to produce an autobiography. He knows much more than he has any intention of telling us. When we read this verse, we cannot help but reflect upon how little we know of this great prophet and of his personal relationship with the God he loved so much. But even in not telling, he fulfills the purpose for which he said he was writing. Just as he related enough about his troubles and blessings that we can better understand our own, he described to us some of his earliest experiences with revelation. He explained his vision of the tree of life and the future history of his people. But after that, he stopped giving us many details about his visions and conversations with the Lord.

In a very real way, he told us all we need to know. As he led us to this mountain, he gave sufficient evidence that he is a true prophet. He bore testimony of the eternal divinity of the Savior. He demonstrated that the Lord keeps his promises to his children—and he told us how we must proceed from there. “Mountain” is code for sacred space. It is the place where one goes to meet God, and was symbolized by the ancient temple. His words, while autobiographical in their form, are invitational in their intent:

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