Old World Covenant Patterns in King Benjamin's Speech
“That the covenant ceremonies in both the Old Testament and the Book of Mosiah reflect an ancient Near Eastern pattern prescribed for such occasions may provide another control for establishing the genuineness of the Book of Mormon,” says Stephen Ricks, in his recent paper entitled “The Treaty/Covenant Pattern in King Benjamin’s Address.”
Old Testament scholars have long studied and analyzed the manner in which treatiese and covenants were made in the ancient Near East and have compared their results with the covenants made in the Bible. Now Ricks has undertaken a similar analysis of the important covenant made in Zarahemla under King Benjamin (Mos. 1-6). This adds yet another dimension to our study of these astonishing chapters.
King Benjamin’s speech is profound. Ricks’ paper, along with Nibley’s study of this text as an ancient year rite celebration and Tvedtnes’ report on its striking connections with the Israelite Feast of Tabernacles and other religious festivals, are all available in the F.A.R.M.S. Book of Mormon Study Catalog of eighty-three articles complementing the 1984 Gospel Doctrine Lessons.