Monday, March 26, 2012

Crossing Things

Variations of the word "cross" are used in 27 Book of Mormon verses. There are 4 different senses or meanings of the word in the text:
  1. The instrument of torture upon which our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, was crucified 1 Nephi 11:33, 3 Nephi 27:14, Ether 4:1.
  2. Burdens or trials borne by faithful followers of Jesus Christ 2 Nephi 9:18, Jacob 1:18, 3 Nephi 12:30.
  3. Ending a line of reasoning or mode of behavior Mosiah 12:19, Alma 10:16, Alma 39:9.
  4. Traveling over a river, lake, or ocean 1 Nephi 17:17 (Indian Ocean), 1 Nephi 17:32 (River Jordan), Alma 2:27 (River Sidon), Ether 2:26 (Asiatic lakes).
Crossing the river Sidon is mentioned 7 times in the text. Crossing the head of Sidon is mentioned 1 time Alma 56:25. This implies that the head of Sidon, a strategic place in the narrow strip of wilderness south of the Nephite city of Manti (see the article "Manti" in this blog) was itself a stream of water that one crossed in a watercraft or on a pontoon bridge. Crossing "over" the river Sidon or head of Sidon appears 2 times in the text Alma 16:7, Alma 56:25. One can also go over Sidon as in Alma 6:7 or pass over the sea as in 2 Nephi 8:10.

This is the complete catalog of textual usage of some variant of the word "cross" referring to waters.
1 Nephi 1 Header Lehi & family cross the Indian Ocean + Pacific Ocean
1 Nephi 13:29 The Bible goes forth from Europe across oceans to all the world
1 Nephi 16:12 Lehi & family travel across river Laman to continue their southward journey down the coast of the Red Sea
1 Nephi 17:8 Nephi commanded to build a ship so Lehi & family can be divinely carried across the Indian + Pacific Oceans
1 Nephi 17:17 Laman & Lemual mock Nephi for thinking he can build a ship and cross oceans
1 Nephi 17:32 Children of Israel crossed river Jordan into their promised land
Omni 1:16 Mulekites come with divine help across the Atlantic Ocean to the Americas
Mosiah 10:12-13 Lamanites maintain tradition of grievance for alleged injustices done while crossing the Indian + Pacific Oceans and upon their arrival in the Western Hemisphere
Alma 2:27 Amlicites + Lamanites engage the Nephite army under Alma on the west bank of Sidon in the local land of Zarahemla as the Nephites are crossing Sidon from east to west, coming from the land of Gideon
Alma 2:34-35 Bodies of dead Lamanite warriors are thrown into Sidon to clear the bank so Nephite warriors can cross the river from east to west.
Alma 16:6 Alma prophesied that a Lamanite army would cross Sidon from west to east in wilderness south of Manti
Alma 16:7 Zoram and his Nephite army left the local land of Zarahemla and crossed Sidon from west to east into the land of Gideon before traveling southward to Manti and beyond
Alma 43:35 The Lamanite army under Zerahemnah had traveled through a valley and begun to cross Sidon from east to west when Lehi and his Nephite army engaged them from the rear
Alma 43:40 Lamanites driven by Lehi and his men into the waters of Sidon where they crossed the river from east to west while Lehi's forces remained on the east bank
Alma 56:25 Lamanite forces in the southwest quarter of Nephite lands were afraid to cross the head of Sidon from west to east to mount an attack on Nephihah
Ether 2:6 Jaredites cross the oceans in barges
Ether 2:22 Brother of Jared worries Jaredites would have to cross the oceans in darkness inside their unlit barges
Ether 2:25 Divine help necessary for Jaredites to cross oceans in their barges
Ether 3:3-4 Brother of Jared prays that Jaredites will have light to travel across oceans in their barges
Ether 6:3 Miraculous stones provided light so Jaredites did not cross oceans in darkness
Ether 7:27 Shule remembered divine help Jaredites received to travel across oceans in their barges
Ether 8:9 Daughter of Jared remembers written record brought across oceans by the Jaredites
Ether 10:2 Shez remembers divine help that enabled Jaredites to come across oceans in their barges