1. The words which Ya’akov, the brother of Nefi, spoke unto the people of Nefi, after the death of Nefi: Now, my beloved brothers, I, Ya’akov, according to the responsibility which I am under to Elohim to magnify my office with soberness, and that I might rid my garments of your sins, I come up into the Temple this day that I might declare unto you the word of Elohim. And you yourselves know that I have thus far been diligent in the office of my calling, but I this day am weighed down with much more desire and anxiety for the welfare of your souls than I have previously been. For behold, as yet you have been obedient unto the word of yhwh which I have given unto you. But behold, hearken unto me and know that by the help of the all-powerful Creator of Heaven and earth, I can tell you concerning your thoughts,16 how that you are beginning to labor in sin, which sin appears very abominable unto me, yes, and abominable unto Elohim. Yes, and it grieves my soul, and causes me to shrink with shame before the presence of my Maker, that I must testify unto you concerning the wickedness of your hearts. And also it grieves me that I must use so much boldness of speech concerning you before your wives and your children, many of whose feelings are exceedingly tender, and chaste, and delicate before Elohim, which thing is pleasing unto Elohim. And I suppose that they have come up here to hear the pleasing word of Elohim, yes, the word which heals the wounded soul.
  2. Wherefore, it burdens my soul that I should be constrained, because of the strict mitzvah which I have received from Elohim, to admonish you according to your crimes, to enlarge the wounds of those who are already wounded, instead of consoling and healing their wounds. And those who have not been wounded, instead of feasting upon the pleasing word of Elohim, have daggers placed to pierce their souls and wound their delicate minds. But despite the greatness of the task, I must do according to the strict commands of Elohim and tell you concerning your wickedness and abominations in the presence of the pure in heart,17 and the broken heart, and under the glance of the piercing eye of El Shaddai.
  3. Wherefore, I must tell you the truth according to the plainness18 of the word of Elohim. For behold, as I inquired of yhwh, thus came the word unto me, saying, Ya’akov, get you up into the Temple tomorrow and declare the word which I shall give you unto this people.
  4. And now behold, my brothers, this is the word which I declare unto you: that many of you have begun to search for gold, and for silver, and all manner of precious ores, in the which this land, which is a land of promise unto you and to your seed, abounds most plentifully. And the hand of Providence has smiled upon you most pleasingly, that you have obtained many riches. And because some of you have obtained more abundantly than that of your brothers, you are lifted up in the pride of your hearts,19 and wear stiff necks and high heads because of the costliness of your apparel, and persecute your brothers because you suppose that you are better than they.
  5. And now my brothers, do you suppose that Elohim justifies you in this thing? Behold, I say unto you, no, but he condemns you; and if you persist in these things, his judgments must speedily come unto you. Oh that he would show you that he can pierce you, and with one glance of his eye he can smite you to the dust. Oh that he would rid you from this iniquity and abomination. And, oh that you would listen unto the word of his commands, and let not this pride of your hearts destroy your souls. Think of your brothers like unto yourselves,20 and be familiar with all and free with your substance, that they may be rich like unto you. But before you seek for riches, seek you for the kingdom of Elohim. And after you have obtained a hope in Mashiach, you shall obtain riches if you seek them. And you will seek them for the intent to do good: to clothe the naked, and to feed the hungry, and to liberate the captive, and administer relief to the sick and the afflicted.21
  6. And now my brothers, I have spoken unto you concerning pride. And those of you which have afflicted your neighbor and persecuted him because you were proud in your hearts of the things which Elohim has given you, what say you of it? Do you not suppose that such things are abominable unto him who created all flesh? And the one being is as precious in his sight as the other.22 And all flesh is of the dust. And for the very same end has he created them, that they should keep his mitzvot23 and glorify him for ever. And now I make an end of speaking unto you concerning this pride. And were it not that I must speak unto you concerning a more shameful crime, my heart would rejoice exceedingly because of you. But the word of Elohim burdens me because of your more shameful crimes. For behold, thus says yhwh: This people begins to grow24 in iniquity; they understand not the scriptures,25 for they seek to excuse themselves in committing whoredoms because of the things which are written concerning David, and Solomon his son. Behold, David and Solomon truly had many wives and concubines,26 which thing was abominable before me, says yhwh.27
  7. Wherefore, thus says yhwh: I have led this people forth out of the land of Yerushalayim by the power of my arm, that I might raise up unto me a righteous branch from the fruit of the loins of Yosef. Wherefore, I, Adonai yhwh, will not allow that this people shall do like unto them of old.28 Wherefore, my brothers, hear me and hearken to the word of yhwh: For there shall not any man among you have except it be one wife, and concubines he shall have none;29 for I, Adonai yhwh, delight in the chastity of women. And whoredoms are an abomination before me; thus says yhwh Tzva’ot. Wherefore, this people shall keep my mitzvot, says yhwh Tzva’ot, or cursed be the land for their sakes.
  8. For if I will, says yhwh Tzva’ot, raise up seed unto me, I will command my people. Otherwise, they shall hearken unto these things: for behold, I, yhwh, have seen30 the sorrow and heard the mourning of the daughters of my people in the land of Yerushalayim, yes, and in all the lands of my people, because of the wickedness and abominations of their husbands. And I will not allow, says yhwh Tzva’ot, that the cries of the fair daughters of this people, which I have led out of the land of Yerushalayim, shall come up unto me against the men of my people, says yhwh Tzva’ot. For they shall not lead away captive the daughters of my people because of their tenderness, except I shall visit them with a sore curse, even unto destruction. For they shall not commit whoredoms like unto them of old, says yhwh Tzva’ot.
  9. And now behold, my brothers, you know that these mitzvot were given to our father, Lechi.31 Wherefore, you have known them before, and you have come unto great condemnation, for you have done these things which you ought not to have done.32 Behold, you have done greater iniquity than the Lamanites, our brothers. You have broken the hearts of your tender wives and lost the confidence of your children because of your bad examples before them, and the sobbings of their hearts ascend up to Elohim against you. And because of the strictness of the word of Elohim which comes down against you, many hearts died, pierced with deep wounds.
  10. But behold, I, Ya’akov, would speak unto you that are pure in heart. Look unto Elohim with firmness of mind, and pray unto him with exceeding faith, and he will console you in your afflictions, and he will plead your cause and send down justice upon those who seek your destruction.
  11. O all you that are pure in heart,33 lift up your heads, and receive the pleasing word of Elohim, and feast upon his love, for you may, if your minds are firm for ever. But woe, woe unto you that are not pure in heart, that are unclean this day before Elohim; for except you shall repent, the land is cursed for your sakes.34 And the Lamanites, who are not unclean like unto you — nevertheless, they are cursed with a sore cursing35 — shall scourge you even unto destruction. And the time speedily comes that except you repent, they shall possess the land of your inheritance, and Adonai yhwh will lead away the righteous out from among you. Behold, the Lamanites, your brothers whom you hate because of their uncleanness and the cursings which have come upon their skins, are more righteous than you;36 for they have not forgotten the mitzvah of yhwh which was given unto our father, that they should have except it were one wife, and concubines they should have none, and there should not be whoredoms committed among them. And now this mitzvah they observe to keep. Wherefore, because of this observance in keeping this mitzvah, Adonai yhwh will not destroy them, but will be merciful unto them, and one day they shall become a blessed people. Behold, their husbands love their wives, and their wives love their husbands, and their husbands and their wives love their children; and their unbelief and their hatred towards you is because of the iniquity of their fathers.37 Wherefore, how much better are you than they in the sight of your great Creator?
  12. O my brothers, I fear that unless you shall repent of your sins, that their skins will be whiter than yours when you shall be brought with them before the throne of Elohim. Wherefore, a mitzvah I give unto you, which is the word of Elohim, that you revile no more against them because of the darkness of their skin, neither shall you revile against them because of their uncleanness, but you shall remember your own uncleanness, and remember that their uncleanness came because of their fathers. Wherefore, you shall remember your children, how that you have grieved their hearts because of the example that you have set before them, and also remember that you may, because of your uncleanness, bring your children unto destruction, and their sins be heaped upon your heads at the last day.
  13. O my brothers, hearken unto my words; arouse the faculties of your souls. Shake yourselves, that you may awake from the slumber of death, and loose yourselves from the pains of She’ol, that you may not become angels to HaSatan, to be cast into that lake of fire and brimstone which is the second death.38 And now I, Ya’akov, spoke many more things unto the people of Nefi, warning them against fornication, and lustfulness, and every kind of sin, telling them the awful consequences of them. And a hundredth part of the proceedings of this people, which now began to be numerous, cannot be written upon these plates; but many of their proceedings are written upon the larger plates, and their wars, and their contentions, and the reigns of their kings. These plates are called the Plates of Ya’akov, and they were made by the hand of Nefi. And I make an end of speaking these words.