Why did Lehi ignore some of his grandchildren?

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I was reading in 2 Ne. 4 the other day, and I noticed something interesting. Lehi is old and sure he will die soon. As a result, he wants to bless his posterity.

In verses 3 through 7, he addresses Laman’s children, and he addresses Lemuel’s children in verses 8 and 9. He then speaks to Ishmael’s sons, which is kind of interesting in itself.

Two things I find interesting interesting though are that he addresses Sam rather than Sam’s children, and he doesn’t address Nephi or Nephi’s children.

I wonder why that is.

8 thoughts on “Why did Lehi ignore some of his grandchildren?

  1. Good question! I’ve never noticed that.
    Maybe it was kind of like the father’s answer to the prodigal son when he was upset because the father was putting on such a bash for his wayward brother, “Son, thou art ever with me, and all that I have is thine. ” (Luke 15:31)
    Maybe Lehi and Nephi had lots of talks and perhaps Nephi took opportunity to have his children learn from his father a lot more than his brothers had.

  2. There are several interesting questions about Sam. For example, if he was righteous enough to be seen eating of the tree of life, and he was older than Nephi, why was he not the leader instead of Nephi? My theory (which I arrived at before reading Card’s Homecoming series) is that Sam was handicapped. That would also explain why Lehi did not address Sam’s children–he didn’t have any.

  3. I think he skips over Laman and Lemuel and talks to their children because he realizes Laman and Lemuel themselves are a lost cause and he hopes to do some good with their children even though their fathers are going down the tubes. Not so with Nephi, Sam et al. As for not addressing Nephi, it’s pretty clear that he knows the Lord has chosen Nephi to be the new prophet and leader. Maybe these talks are focused on getting the others to follow him. And I imagine he had plenty of conversations with Nephi at other times. Not sure, though.

  4. Maybe Lehi and Nephi had lots of talks and perhaps Nephi took opportunity to have his children learn from his father a lot more than his brothers had.

    I was wondering the same thing, Dawn. What about Nephi’s children though?

    why was he not the leader instead of Nephi?

    I think it has to do with 1 Ne. 2. For example, in verse 16 we read:

    And it came to pass that I, Nephi, being exceedingly young, nevertheless being large in stature, and also having great desires to know of the mysteries of God, wherefore, I did cry unto the Lord; and behold he did visit me, and did soften my heart that I did believe all the words which had been spoken by my father; wherefore, I did not rebel against him like unto my brothers.

    It seems Nephi specifically sought out knowledge from God. As a result, he was blessed.

    “Blessed art thou, Nephi, because of thy faith, for thou hast sought me diligently, with lowliness of heart. And inasmuch as ye shall keep my commandments, ye shall prosper, and shall be led to a bland of promise; yea, even a land which I have prepared for you; yea, a land which is choice above all other lands. And inasmuch as thy brethren shall rebel against thee, they shall be cut off from the presence of the Lord.” (vv. 19-21)

    Presumably, Sam had not sought diligently after the mysteries of God.

    My theory . . . is that Sam was handicapped.

    I’d never heard this theory. I am doubtful though. In verse 17 we read:

    I spake unto Sam, making known unto him the things which the Lord had manifested unto me by his Holy Spirit. And it came to pass that he believed in my words.

    It seems Sam is mentally capable to understand spiritual things. We should also remember that 1 Ne 16:7 states that Sam married.

    That would also explain why Lehi did not address Sam’s children–he didn’t have any.

    I also wonder whether Sam had children. Lehi, in 2 Ne 4:11, words his blessing in a way that makes it seem he’s referring to future children.

    Not so with Nephi, Sam et al.

    Then why address Sam?

  5. whoops. Nephi claims children in 1 Nephi 18:19, on the ship.

    and says “my family” in 2 Nephi 5:6, and refers to “Sam, mine elder brother and his family.” That sounds like Sam has kids. Jacob and Joseph and sisters are not referred to as having families.

    Despite the “my family” list when Nephi and friends are fleeing Laman et al. after Lehi’s death, it’s tempting to think of Nephi’s children having cast their lots with Laman et al. Since children of Nephi are never mentioned again.

    Jacob 7:27 names Enos as a son to Jacob. We assume that’s the Enos of the day-long prayer of the next book.

    Perhaps Nephi’s children were girls–the Book of Mormon seems hardly to be able to bother with females. Born in the wilderness, they could have been the same age as Jacob.

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