John’s Warning in Revelation, and Why the Book of Mormon is A.O.K (1 Nephi 14)

Okay…so if you are reading this and you’re a Mormon, I’m sure that you’ve been made aware of the warning given in Revelation. If you’re reading this, and you’re not a mormon, you may have recited the warning in Revelation to your Mormon friends…

” 18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:” – Revelation 22:18

Often times, Mormons are told that this scripture proves that the Book of Mormon is not true, or is uninspired.

I’ve heard this before. My “defense” has always been:

  1. John wrote the book of Revelation before he wrote the Book of John, so he is going against his own warning.
  2. A similar warning is given in Deuteronomy 4:2 – Does this mean that the entire bible isn’t true?

Those “defenses” seem to be fine enough. I mean, I don’t really put much stock into the argument because I have actually read the Book of Mormon, and I’ve received witness that it is good, and it is true. I love the Bible and the Book of Mormon. I love learning about the Savior and His gospel. Simple enough.

Anyways – I was reading the Book of Mormon recently in 1 nephi 14. In this chapter, Nephi is receiving a revelation – about the scattering and gathering of Israel and about the latter-days. Towards the end of the chapter, we read:

” 18 And it came to pass that the angel spake unto me, saying: Look!

19 And I looked and beheld a man, and he was dressed in a white robe.

20 And the angel said unto me: Behold one of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

21 Behold, he shall see and write the remainder of these things; yea, and also many things which have been.

22 And he shall also write concerning the end of the world.

23 Wherefore, the things which he shall write are just and true; and behold they are written in the book which thou beheld proceeding out of the mouth of the Jew; and at the time they proceeded out of the mouth of the Jew, or, at the time the book proceeded out of the mouth of the Jew, the things which were written were plain and pure, and most precious and easy to the understanding of all men.

24 And behold, the things which this apostle of the Lamb shall write are many things which thou hast seen; and behold, the remainder shalt thou see.

25 But the things which thou shalt see hereafter thou shalt not write; for the Lord God hath ordained the apostle of the Lamb of God that he should write them.” – 1 Nephi 14:18-25

So – Nephi sees one of the 12 apostles of Jesus Christ. The angel explains that this apostle has seen the vision that Nephi is seeing (the end of the world), and that he (John) will write the contents of that vision. The angel testifies that what John will write will be just and true. He also teaches that John will write many of the things that Nephi has seen. John will also write the rest of the prophecy. Nephi is commanded to stop recording the contents of this vision because John was ordained to write it. So, the Book of Mormon is revealed scripture, but it does not add to the book of Revelation. Nephi was commanded not to write this revelation. Nephi saw the revelation, but he was taught that another apostle (John) was foreordained to write it for the world to know. The Book of Mormon, therefore, does not go against John’s charge left in Revelation.

I’m not supposing that Nephi and John saw the exact same revelation in the exact same way. But I know that Nephi saw the end of the world, and he was commanded to keep it to himself. John would be the apostle to give this revelation to the world. The Book of Mormon abides John’s warning.

So – if you’re reading this, and you’re a Mormon, you can now with confidence explain that the Book of Mormon does not defy John’s warning given in revelation. If you are NOT a Mormon, and you are reading this, then I urge you to read the Book of Mormon and receive another true witness of the Savior.