Sunday, June 1, 2014

Nephi’s inspiration to burst his bands

17 But it came to pass that I prayed unto the Lord, saying: O Lord, according to my faith which is in thee, wilt thou deliver me from the hands of my brethren; yea, even give me strength that I may burst these bands with which I am bound. 
18 And it came to pass that when I had said these words, behold, the bands were loosed from off my hands and feet…(1 Nephi 7:17-18)

I was reading this verse and I noticed there were footnotes by strength and burst, one of which was a reference to Judges 14:6.  I thought, “Who is in Judges?” And then the answer came like a flash – Samson! 

Consider how similar the language is here:

And when he [Samson] came unto Lehi, the Philistines shouted against him: and the Spirit of the Lord came mightily upon him, and the cords that were upon his arms became as flax that was burnt with fire, and his bands loosed from off his hands. (Judges 15:14)

We see easily how Nephi draws inspiration from the scriptures to about how to solve his problems.  We may be familiar with how he references stories of Moses and Exodus when he talks to his brothers, but it is neat to notice that he also may have thought of Samson’s great strength and been inspired by those stories to ask for strength to burst his own bands.

I just think this is so cool.  I think it’s because it is like a message from the Lord that we shouldn’t get the idea that these were one-shot miracles that can only happen once.  We can ask from the same miracles again when we need them.


Jonathan A. Cavender said...

I have always thought that this was a great scripture for the fact that the Lord answers the prayers in His own way. Nephi (perhaps remembering Sampson?) ask the Lord to give him strength to burst his bonds. The Lord, on the other hand, loosens his bonds instead.

Sometimes we get so focused on asking for the help we want that we prevent the Lord from giving us the help we need. We should remember when we pray for strength to burst our bonds that the Lord may just loosen them instead.

Michaela Stephens said...

Interesting point. I have to wonder if the Lord gave him strength to struggle until the bands were loosed or whether the Lord just loosened the ropes.