“And it came to pass . . .”: The Sociopolitical Events in the Book of Mormon Leading to the Eighteenth Year of the Reign of the Judges


“And it came to pass . . .”: The Sociopolitical Events in the Book of Mormon Leading to the Eighteenth Year of the Reign of the Judges

Title“And it came to pass . . .”: The Sociopolitical Events in the Book of Mormon Leading to the Eighteenth Year of the Reign of the Judges
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsBelnap, Dan
JournalJournal of Book of Mormon Studies
Volume23
Pagination101-139
Type of ArticleEssay
KeywordsAnti-Nephi-Lehi; Book of Mormon; History; Mulekite; Nephite; Reign of the Judges; Sociopolitical
Abstract

The period from the end of the seventeenth year of the reign of the judges to the beginning of the nineteenth year was a particularly unstable time in the history of the Nephite people. The amount of text Mormon devotes to it reveals the importance of this time period in their history. The crises that emerged during this time affected every Nephite, but they did not arise out of a vacuum. Instead, a number of prior social forces were at work and created an environment from which the tensions could find full form. This paper focuses on three primary forces: (1) the creation of a new political system (judgeship rather than kingship) and its relationship with the church, (2) the reemergence of political and social power among the Mulekite majority, and (3) the immigration of the Anti-Nephi-Lehies.

URLhttp://publications.mi.byu.edu/publications/jbms/23/jbms23-belnap-essay_sociopolitical.pdf