Approximately 515-420 B.C.
Approximately 515-420 B.C.
Approximately 2200 B.C. (the time of the Tower of Babel).
The brother of Jared was the first prophet of the Jaredites. His name is not given in the Book of Mormon, although its translator, Joseph Smith, declared his name to be Mahonri Moriancumer. Keep reading →
Died ca. 121 B.C.
A Nephite prophet and king, Benjamin was a son of Mosiah. Mosiah was a righteous leader who led his people wisely and taught his son to follow the direction of the Lord. Benjamin was a righteous and holy man who also led the military efforts of his people and served them in all ways all the days of his life. Keep reading →
Approximately 120-73 B.C.
A son of Alma, also a Nephite prophet, he was a major detractor of the church until he underwent a remarkable conversion. He became as devoted to the church as he was unruly prior to his conversion, and consequently had a tremendous influence upon not only the faithful of his religion but also his people and the Nephite nation. He ultimately served as the first chief judge in Zarahemla (a replacement government structure engineered by Mosiah, the previous king), commander-in-chief of the Nephite army, and high priest and prophet. Keep reading →
Approximately 174-92 B.C.
Alma was an ex-priest of the wicked King Noah. He supported releasing Abinadi without punishment, and drew the wrath of his fellow priests for doing so. After escaping the king’s court, he taught faithful Nephites secretly in the wilderness and founded the church. He served as its prophet for twenty years before being discovered by the Lamanites. After suffering captivity, they escaped and fled to a new land, where they met up with King Mosiah and his people. Mosiah supported Alma in his role as leader of the church, which he did for another twenty years or so. Keep reading →
Approximately 150 B.C.
Abinadi was a Nephite prophet. Abinadi had joined a small group of Nephites who attempted to regain control of the city of Nephi from the Lamanites. After he publicly called the king and his priests (all apostate Nephites) to repentance, he was banished, went into exile, and returned two years later to again preach against the wicked King Noah and his priests. After a memorable trial in the king’s court, the king was afraid of Abinadi’s righteous power and was willing to release him. His priests, however, would not allow it, and they succeeded in having Abinadi burned alive.
Nothing is known about Abinadi’s calling as a prophet or his preparation for such.
Abinadi was a powerful witness of Jesus Christ, whose birth was yet a century and a half in the future. He knew the sacred writings well, including those of Isaiah, and was obviously a recipient of the gift of prophecy. During the trial for his life, at one point “his face shown with exceeding luster, evan as Moses’ did while in the mount of Sinai.” While he was clearly familiar with the workings of the Spirit, we have little information about his direct interaction with God the Father.
Abinadi was in a tough spot. The Lord commanded him to cry repentance and witness against the evil doings of the king and his powerful but utterly corrupt priests. At one point, he had to sneak back into the city in disguise to fulfill his calling from the Lord. One wonders whether his purpose was not so much a mission of potential conversion but rather of providing a witness against King Noah and his priests so they could be held fully accountable at the day of judgment.
Abinadi is remembered for prophecies in two particular areas: (1) his powerful witness of the coming Christ and His death and resurrection, and (2) the destruction that would come to the people because of their wickedness.
Abinadi was faithful to his calling from God even though he knew that his life was in jeopardy. But his love for God was stronger than any fear that might have been aroused by these wicked government leaders. Have you ever been in a position where you were ridiculed or challenged because of your beliefs by someone in a position of authority?
Encyclopedia of Mormonism, vol. 1, s.v. “Abinadi.”
Book of Mormon, the book of Mosiah.
Book of Mormon, Reader’s Edition, ed. Grant Hardy.
Approximately 4 B.C. to A.D. 30.
Viewed accurately, Jesus’ ministry had its beginnings at the very foundations of this world and will extend beyond the final judgment and conclusion of this world’s purpose. His mortal ministry took place in the Holy Land for a period of about three years, ending of course with His Crucifixion and subsequent Resurrection. Keep reading →
Exact dates are unknown.
Same as other of the Twelve in general.
“Then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God. Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed” (John 20:26-29). Keep reading →
Exact dates are not known.
John is the author of the Gospel of John. He was one of three Apostles during Jesus Christ’s ministry who were witness to the raising of Jairus’s daughter, the Transfiguration, and the Savior’s agony in Gethsemane. Following Jesus’ Crucifixion and subsequent Resurrection, John continued to teach the gospel. After he was banished to the isle of Patmos for doing so, he continued writing and is responsible for having written what is now know as the book of Revelation. Keep reading →
Exact dates are unknown. Tradition holds that Paul was martyred by being beheaded during Nero’s persecution of the Christians in the mid-60s B.C.
Paul became one of early Christianities most successful missionaries. Following his conversion, he preached throughout much of what is now the Middle East and southern Europe. He is perhaps best known for a series of lengthy missionary tours.
Known as Saul prior to his conversion, he was a Pharisee and a student of Gamaliel. He vigorously persecuted Christians in his protection of Jewish traditions. However, while traveling to pursue some additional persecution in Damascus, he had a vision in which he saw Jesus Christ. This reversed his direction, he changed to his Latin name Paul, and he became as adamant about Christianity as he had been about his Jewishness.
Paul was a visionary and very inspired man. He developed a close relationship with God and seemed to receive inspiration in a variety of spiritual ways.
Paul placed himself in an interesting position: prior to his position, he was a militant persecutor of Christianity, even taking part in the stoning of Stephen. He was apparently well known for his position. However, after his conversion, he began teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ among the very people he had so actively protected from its message earlier. He was a fearless proselyter and was often persecuted himself for his actions. He was arrested more than once and taken to Rome for sentencing. Tradition holds that he probably suffered martyrdom in the spring of A.D. 65.
Although Paul is well known for his proselyting efforts, his numerous letters that make up what is now called the Pauline epistles in the New Testament are written to converts and congregations who had a fair understanding of the gospel already. In those letters, he covers a wide variety of topics, based on the needs of that particular congregation, but he was not shy about calling them to repentance for whatever was keeping them from proper gospel living.
Paul bore fervent testimony of Jesus Christ. Here is just a sampling:
“For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement” (Romans 5:10-11).
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
“For Christ sent me . . . to preach the gospel” (1 Cor. 1:17).
Paul’s dramatic reversal of his life’s direction is a witness that even the most committed persecutors of Christ’s followers can change their lives and become believers. Resolve in your heart today to never give up in teaching those around you about your beliefs. Don’t be obnoxious about it, but neither should you back down from your beliefs. Paul wrote: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ” (Rom. 1:16). Join him today in that commitment.
LDS Bible Dictionary
Oxford Companion to the Bible, edited by Bruce M. Metzger and Michael D. Coogan