BYU (Brigham Young University) is operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, often mistakenly called the “Mormon Church.” As part of their undergraduate coursework, BYU students take multiple semesters of spiritually uplifting, stimulating religion classes.
In this series (see below), students enrolled in scripture study classes have shared their thoughts, insights, and reflections on the Book of Mormon in the form of letters to someone they know. We invite you to take a look at their epiphanies and discoveries as they delve into the scriptures.
In publishing these, we fulfill their desire to speak to all of us of the relevance, power and beauty of the Book of Mormon, a second witness of Jesus Christ and complement to the Bible. The Book of Mormon includes the religious history of a group of Israelites who settled in ancient America. (The names they use are those of prophets who taught the Book of Mormon peoples to look forward to the coming of Christ—Nephi, Lehi, Alma, Helaman, and other unfamiliar names. We hope those names will become more familiar to you as you read their inspiring words and feel the relevance and divinity of their messages through these letters.)
Let us know if you’d like to receive your own digital copy of the Book of Mormon, and/or if these messages encourage and assist you spiritually as well.
Book of Mormon: For the Devil Laugheth
3 Nephi chapters 7-10 describe the state of the Nephites after the terrible destruction of their cities. They lie in a thick fog that keeps them from lighting a flame or seeing much of anything. While in this almost hopeless state, they hear a voice from heaven calling out to them. The voice is Jesus Christ. I think this is significant because when times get tough and trials are beating on us, Christ can be found in our darkness. Christ’s first words to the Nephites are, “Wo, wo, wo unto this people; wo unto the inhabitants of the whole earth except they shall repent; for the devil laugheth, and his angels rejoice, because of the slain of the fair sons and daughters of my people; and it is because of their iniquity and abominations that they are fallen!” The phrase “the devil laugheth” hits home to me. Satan laughs at our mistakes. He tries so hard to tempt us and commit us to sin, but he then laughs at us after we’ve fallen. Christ is just the opposite. He will find us in our trials and “pierce our hearts.” The phrase “the devil laugheth” has always intrigued me. Why would the devil laugh? It’s obviously not due to joy. Or is it? Is Satan’s only source of joy from watching his brothers and sisters rebel from their Father? Is his only source of joy coming from the misery and guilt of mankind? What a scary thought!
It’s great to know that in the end Satan will fail.