Evidence #357 | July 11, 2022

Ancient Farewell Pattern

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Scripture Central

Abstract

A number of Nephite texts—especially King Benjamin’s speech—closely adhere to a pattern found in ancient farewell addresses seen in Jewish, Christian, and Greco-Roman sources.

Beginning in the mid-20th century, scholars began to turn their attention to patterns found in ancient farewell addresses, as recounted in Jewish, Christian, and Greco-Roman sources.1 The Book of Mormon also contains a number of farewell addresses. Generally speaking, the examples from the Book of Mormon follow the ancient farewell pattern, especially as found in early biblical precedents. The status of King Benjamin’s speech as an ancient farewell address is particularly persuasive.

King Benjamin’s Farewell Address

William Kurz, in a groundbreaking study on ancient farewell speeches, analyzed nearly two dozen relevant texts, from which he identified 20 elements that they commonly share.2 While all of the farewells in his analysis contain multiple elements, none of them possess all 20. The most complete example he found is the farewell speech of Moses in Deuteronomy 31–34, which contains 16 of the 20 elements.

Image via myjewishlearning.com.

In a book chapter published in 1998, John W. Welch and Daryl T. Hague compared King Benjamin’s speech (Mosiah 1–6) to the ancient farewell pattern identified by Kurz.3 They concluded that “Benjamin’s speech may well be the best example on record of this ancient rhetorical form of speech.”4 The following chart compares the contents of Benjamin’s speech side by side with the elements of ancient farewells identified by Kurz.5

#

Element

Element Description

King Benjamin’s Farewell (Mosiah 1–6)

1

The Summons

The speaker calls his successors and followers together so they can receive his last instructions.

Benjamin told his son Mosiah to “make a proclamation throughout all this land among all this people, … that thereby they may be gathered together” to hear his final words (1:9–10). Later, Benjamin similarly declared to his people, “I have caused that ye should assemble yourselves together” (2:28–29).

2

Speaker’s Example

A description of the speaker’s life and calling is followed by a commandment that his followers should do as he has done.

Benjamin reported that he spent his days in the service of his people (2:12–14). He then explained, “if I, whom ye call your king, do labor to serve you, then ought not ye to labor to serve one another?” (2:18).

3

Speaker’s Innocence

The speaker declares that he has done his best and has fulfilled his obligations. He has accomplished what he intended to do and cannot be held liable for his people’s actions in the future.

Concerning his actions as a king, Benjamin stated, “I can answer a clear conscience before God this day” (2:15). In another gesture of his innocence, he declared, “I at this time have caused that ye should assemble yourselves together, that I might be found blameless … that I might rid my garments of your blood, at this period of time when I am about to go down to my grave, that I might go down in peace” (2:27–28).

4

Impending Death

The announcement of the speaker's impending death reveals no fear of death. Rather, the speaker shows courage and an acceptance of his fate. Sometimes he commends his soul to God or the gods.

The text clearly demonstrates that Benjamin felt he was about to die. One passage states that “he waxed old, and he saw that he must very soon go the way of all the earth” (1:9). In others, he declared things like: “I am about to go down to my grave” (2:28) and “I am old, and am about to yield up this mortal frame to its mother earth” (2:26). Rather than expressing fear, Benjamin anticipated that his “immortal spirit” would soon “join the choirs above in singing the praises of a just God” (2:28). 

5

Exhortations

The listeners are encouraged to remember the teachings that the speaker has given previously and to obey the commands that he will give during his address. The people are also counseled to have courage during times of trial or difficulty. Exhortations help to solidify the lessons of the past and provide comfort for the future.

Benjamin gave numerous powerful exhortations to his listeners. On one occasion he declared, “I have not commanded you to come up hither to trifle with the words which I shall speak, but that you should hearken unto me” (2:9). In another instance, he declared, “O remember, remember that these things are true” (2:41). See also, 2:18–19, 31, 40; 3:1; 4:4, 9–11, 21, 26; 5:11–12, 15.

 

6

Warnings

Warnings about disobedience and its consequences are given. There may also be warnings concerning false teachers who will try to lead the people astray. Commandments and final instructions, designed to aid the people, accompany these warnings.

Strong warnings are scattered throughout Benjamin’s speech, such as “beware lest there shall arise contentions among you” (2:32) and “wo, wo unto him who knoweth that he rebelleth against God!” (3:12). See also, 2:33, 36–39, 40; 3:21, 24–27, 4:22–23, 25, 28–30; 5:10.

 

7

Blessings

The speaker usually pronounces or promises blessings in conjunction with his warnings and final instructions.

The warnings in Benjamin’s speech are balanced by a variety of blessings, such as the reiteration of Lehi’s promise that his people would “prosper in the land” if they continued to keep the commandments (2:31; cf. 2:24; 2 Nephi 1:20). Benjamin also taught that those who faithfully endure to the end are “blessed in all things” (2:41). See also, 3:13, 16; 4:7, 12; 5:7, 9.

8

Gestures

While the speaker may make some gesture to bid farewell, as seen especially in the Greco-Roman literature, only one of the twelve biblical addresses cited by Kurz mentions a farewell gesture. That instance occurs when Paul knelt down and prayed with the disciples at the end of his speech, after which the disciples fell on his neck and kissed him (see Acts 20:36–38).

There are no clear farewell gestures in King Benjamin’s speech. However, at one point Benjamin declared that he was standing before them “that I might rid my garments of your blood” (2:28). It is possible that when making these statements Benjamin enacted a physical gesture, much like Jacob seems to have done in a very similar context in 2 Nephi 9:44.

9

Tasks for Successors

Final orders may confer specific responsibilities to successors. Jesus, for example, gave final charges to the apostles at the last supper (see Luke 22:25–38); David commanded Solomon to take vengeance on Joab and Shimei (see 1 Kings 2:5–6, 8–9).

Before meeting with the people, generally, Benjamin met with his sons to give them final instructions, including to remember the truth of Benjamin’s sayings (1:6), search the scriptures diligently (1:7), take charge of the affairs of the kingdom (1:15), and take charge of the Nephite records and artifacts (1:16).

10

Review of History

A theological review of the past is given, often rehearsing events going back to the beginning of the world, the purpose of which is to emphasize the guidance, protection, and chastisement of God. Moses, for example, recounted the history of Israel and acknowledged God's hand in the protection and development of the children of Jacob (Deuteronomy 32).

When giving final instructions to his sons, Benjamin reviewed the importance of the scriptures among his people, as they contained the “sayings of our fathers from the time they left Jerusalem until now” (1:6). Benjamin also recounted the history of his people’s “preservation” (1:14) and past journeys, in connection with the “ball or director” that Lehi received in the wilderness (1:16–17). Later, Benjamin reminded his people of the “holy prophets” that the Lord had sent among the children of men, as well as the “many signs, and wonders, and types, and shadows showed he unto them, concerning his coming,” in connection with the law of Moses (3:13–15). He then went back even further, to the fall of Adam, to explain several important theological points (3:15–26).

11

Revelation of the Future

Often the speaker is aware of future events that could threaten his reputation or might involve his followers. Jesus, for instance, predicted Judas’s betrayal and Peter’s denial (see Luke 22:21, 34).

King Benjamin declared, “I have things to tell you concerning that which is to come” (3:1). After this, Benjamin delivered many prophecies of Christ given to him by an angel.

12

Promises

Biblical farewell speeches typically promise the prospect of eternal glory. Thus both Jesus (Luke 22) and Mattathias (1 Maccabees 2) promised glory to their followers after teaching them about the importance of serving one another. This element does not appear in the speeches from the Greco-Roman tradition.

Among the many promises Benjamin gave to his people, he declared that if they would remain humble and faithful, “ye shall always rejoice, and be filled with the love of God” (4:12). He also confirmed that they “shall be found at the right hand of God” if they would “be obedient unto the end of your lives” (5:8–9). In conclusion, he promised that they would be “brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life” (5:13).

13

Appointing a Successor

The appointment of a successor is a very common feature of farewell speeches in the biblical tradition, and this designation serves to legitimize the authority of the new leader. For example, David’s farewell address specifically endorsed Solomon’s leadership (see 1 Kings 2:1–4).

Benjamin told Mosiah to gather the people together so he could “proclaim unto this my people out of mine own mouth that thou art a king and a ruler over this people” (1:12). Benjamin later fulfilled this commitment, saying to his people “my son Mosiah is a king and a ruler over you” (2:30).

14

Mourning

Often the account describes the mourning by the friends and followers of the speaker.

There is no reported mourning or lamentation over Benjamin’s death, probably because he didn’t pass until three years later (6:5).

15

Future Degeneration

Predictions and warnings concerning future heresies and disobedience often appear in biblical farewell speeches. Such predictions transfer responsibility for adverse developments in the future from the speaker to the coming generations. Moses, for example, declared that Israel would reject the Lord and turn to idolatry.

When giving Mosiah instructions, Benjamin declared that “if this highly favored people of the Lord should fall into transgression, and become a wicked and an adulterous people, that the Lord will deliver them up, that thereby they become weak like unto their brethren; and he will no more preserve them by his matchless and marvelous power, as he has hitherto preserved our fathers” (1:13). This prophecy was alluded to and fulfilled many years later (see Helaman 4:24; Mormon 2:26).

16

Covenant Renewal

The listeners are enjoined to renew their covenant with God. David’s instructions to Solomon ensured the fulfillment of David’s covenant with God, and Jesus’ actions at the last supper signaled a new covenant symbolized by the bread and wine. The covenant element is unique to the biblical tradition, and in Old Testament times sacrifices would generally accompany the covenant renewal.

Several verses before Benjamin’s speech is recorded, the text mentions that the people “took of the firstlings of their flocks, that they might offer sacrifice and burnt offerings according to the law of Moses” (2:3). Later on, the people renewed their “covenant with our God to do his will,” which led to their being called the “children of Christ” (5:5–8). 

17

Providing for Survivors

Since the followers of the aged leader will require guidance and comfort after his death, instructions are given for providing such help. Jesus’ command that Peter strengthen the brethren (see Luke 22:23) is an example of this element.

Benjamin held an acute concern for the poor, needy, and disadvantaged among his people, and left detailed instructions about “administering to their relief, both spiritually and temporally” (4:26). He appointed Mosiah and priests to help oversee these efforts (6:3). 

18

Consolation

Often, the speaker attempts to comfort his closest associates. Jesus did this at the last supper, when he and his most beloved followers were alone.

Before addressing his people as a whole, Benjamin first met with his sons in private. In addition to exhorting them to remember and heed the scriptures, Benjamin promised that if they would “keep the commandments of God” they would “prosper in the land” (1:7). It seems likely that even more words of comfort and instruction were given which went unrecorded: “And many more things did king Benjamin teach his sons, which are not written in this book” (1:8).

19

Moral Guidance

The speaker may review certain principles to help the followers remember what they should do.

Benjamin’s speech is filled with moral instruction on a great many topics, including “service, humility, charity, obedience, faith, the atonement of Jesus Christ, and many other practical and spiritual virtues.”6

20

Approach to Death

This element relates to the leader's approach to death itself. Kurz finds this element present only in Plato’s Phaedo, although he suggests that it may also be implied in Josephus.

Benjamin doesn’t dwell at length on his own feelings about his death, nor does he give instruction or guidance about how one should face death. However, this element may be implied in his statements about his desire to “go down in peace” and “join the choirs above in singing the praises of a just God” (2:28). The lesson is that if one fulfills one’s moral duties, then death will be a peaceful transition into eternal glory.

As assessed by Welch and Hague, the only elements that are clearly missing from Benjamin’s speech are #14 (Mourning) and #20 (Approach to Death).7 In addition, the authors designate element #8 (Gestures) and element #15 (Future Degeneration) as only being implied in Benjamin’s speech.8

King Benjamin greets his people. Image via churchofjesuschrist.org.

It turns out, however, that element #15 is actually clearly present in Mosiah 1:13.9 Assuming that one agrees with Welch and Hague’s other assessments,10 this would bring the total of clearly discernable elements in Benjamin’s speech to 17 out of 20, making it one of “the most complete example[s] of this speech typology yet found anywhere in world literature.”11 As identified by John Welch and Brent Schmidt, the only known speech which supersedes Benjamin’s is 2 Peter, which features 19 out of the 20 farewell elements.12

Interestingly, the two elements that are the least well represented among the biblical texts identified by Kurz are element #20 (which is only implied in the writings of Josephus) and element #8 (which is found only in Acts 20 rather than any of the early Hebrew texts). This means that two of the three elements that are completely or partially missing from Benjamin’s speech shouldn’t really be expected to be found there in the first place. Both appear relatively late in Jewish history and are better represented in the Greco-Roman texts (and are even sparse in that corpus as well).13

The Death of Socrates, by Jacques-Louis David (1787). Plato's Phaedo records the final words of Socrates. 

In contrast, the elements that turn up most prominently in the biblical texts (#s 1, 4, 5, 6, 12) are all clearly and emphatically present in Benjamin’s address.14 As concluded by Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s speech is not only one of the most complete ancient farewell addresses known anywhere, but it also strongly manifests those elements that are most deeply rooted in early biblical tradition.”15

Other Book of Mormon Farewells

Benjamin’s speech isn’t the only farewell address in the Book of Mormon though. Similar final speeches or writings were given by Lehi (2 Nephi 1–4), Nephi (2 Nephi 31–33), Jacob (Jacob 4–6), Enos (Enos 1:27), Mosiah (Mosiah 28–29), Mormon (Mormon 6:17–7:10), and Moroni (Moroni 10:34). As they did with Benjamin’s speech, Welch and Hague evaluated each of these texts in relation to the 20 criteria established by Kurz. As demonstrated in the following chart, the Nephite texts collectively fair very well compared to their early Old Testament counterparts, which were given by Moses (Deuteronomy 31–34), Joshua (Joshua 23–24), David (1 Kings 2:1–10; cf. 1 Chronicles 28–29), and Samuel (1 Samuel 12:1–25).16

#

Moses

Josh.

David

Sam.

Lehi

Nephi

Jacob

Enos

Benj.

Mosiah

Morm.

Moro.

1

X

X

X

 

/

 

X

 

X

/

 

X

2

X

X

 

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

 

 

3

/

X

 

X

X

X

X

X

X

 

X

X

4

X

X

X

 

X

X

X

X

X

X

/

X

5

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

/

X

X

X

X

6

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

/

X

X

X

X

7

X

 

 

 

X

X

/

/

X

/

X

X

8

 

 

 

 

 

/

/

 

/

 

 

X

9

/

 

X

 

X

X

 

/

X

X

 

 

10

X

X

 

X

X

 

X

 

X

X

X

 

11

X

X

 

 

X

X

X

/

X

/

/

X

12

X

X

X

 

X

X

X

/

X

X

X

X

13

X

 

X

/

X

 

 

 

X

X

 

 

14

X

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

/

 

 

15

X

X

/

X

/

X

X

 

X

X

/

/

16

X

X

X

 

 

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

17

X

 

 

 

X

X

X

 

X

X

X

X

18

 

 

 

 

X

 

X

 

X

 

 

 

19

X

 

 

 

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

20

 

 

 

 

X

X

X

X

 

 

/

X

X = Present

/ = Implied or Partially Present

Blank = Absent

Conclusion

It is rather remarkable that King Benjamin’s speech hews so closely to the farewell pattern found in a variety of ancient texts. More than just a decent example of the ancient rhetorical form, Benjamin’s final recorded words constitute one of the best—meaning the most complete—known farewell speeches in all of world literature, based on the criteria identified by William Kurz in his careful study of the genre.17

One might assume that these elements found their way into Benjamin’s speech by accident, but that would beg the question as to why so many of the same elements turn up in the final speeches of other Book of Mormon prophets, especially those given by the Nephites’ founding spiritual leaders (Lehi, Nephi, and Jacob).18 The fact that this pattern shows up repeatedly in Nephite texts argues against the thesis that its presence is mere happenstance.

Could Joseph Smith have been familiar with the ancient farewell genre in 1829? If he was, he almost certainly didn’t derive his knowledge from the academic literature of his day, seeing that biblical scholars don’t appear to have identified the elements of farewell addresses until the mid-20th century.19 It is true that the farewell pattern is embedded in Jewish, Christian, and Greco-Roman texts that were available in the early 19th century, but it’s presence in those sources is hardly obvious. It’s not the type of feature that most readers would ever notice, at least not without the aid of modern scholarship.

As a poorly educated farmer in 1829, Joseph Smith seems an unlikely candidate to have authored all these Nephite farewell texts, especially the stirring oration delivered by King Benjamin. A more fitting explanation is that these final speeches were written by various ancient men trained in the Israelite literary tradition, and that they were indeed in the fading twilight of their lives. Collectively, their last words provide impressive evidence for the Book of Mormon’s ancient literary and cultural heritage.

John W. Welch and Brent J. Schmidt, “Reading 2 Peter as a Far​ewell Text,” in The Ministry of Peter, the Chief Apostle, ed. Frank F. Judd Jr., Eric D. Huntsman, and Shon D. Hopkin (Provo and Salt Lake City, UT: Religious Studies Center and Deseret Book, 2014), 317–335.

John W. Welch and Daryl T. Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” in King Benjamin’s Speech: “That Ye May Learn Wisdom,” ed. John W. Welch and Stephen D. Ricks (Provo, UT: FARMS, 1998), 89–117.

John W. Welch and Daryl T. Hague, “Benjamin’s Speech: A Classic Ancient Farewell Address,” in Reexploring the Book of Mormon: A Decade of New Research, ed. John W. Welch (Provo and Salt Lake City, UT: FARMS and Deseret Book, 1992), 120–123.

BibleDeuteronomy 31–34Joshua 23–241 Kings 2:1–10 1 Chronicles 28–291 Samuel 12:1–25Luke 22:14–38Acts 20:17–382 Peter 1–3Book of Mormon2 Nephi 1–42 Nephi 31–33Jacob 4–6Enos 1:27Mosiah 1–6Mosiah 28–29Mormon 6:17–7:10Moroni 10:34

Bible

Deuteronomy 31–34

Joshua 23–24

1 Kings 2:1–10

1 Chronicles 28–29

1 Samuel 12:1–25

Luke 22:14–38

Acts 20:17–38

2 Peter 1–3

Book of Mormon

2 Nephi 1–4

2 Nephi 31–33

Jacob 4–6

Enos 1:27

Mosiah 1–6

Mosiah 28–29

Mormon 6:17–7:10

Moroni 10:34

  • 1 See Calvin K. Katter, “Luke 22:14–38: A Farewell Address” (PhD Diss., University of Chicago, 1993), 5–16. After a thorough review of the relevant literature on this topic, Katter argues for the legitimacy of viewing the farewell address as a genre of Jewish and Christian literature: “First, we have demonstrated that the farewell address is a genre. We have analyzed farewells in the Hebrew scriptures and the Jewish Christian testaments, whether as self-contained or as components of other literary works. There is enough of a consistent pattern to these works to indicate the existence of a genre concept underlying them. It is possible to follow the history of this genre, beginning with the scene set in Genesis 47–50 and continuing through the Deuteronomic farewell speeches in Deuteronomy 31:1–6, Joshua 23:1–16 and 24:28–30, 1 Samuel 12:1–25, 1 Kings 2:1–12, and 1 Chronicles 22–29. The Jewish testaments are a continuation and adaptation of this farewell address genre enriched by the wisdom and apocalyptic traditions. Finally, this genre is mixed with others in the Christian testaments of Isaac and Jacob.” (p. 249). Katter uses this history as a segue to analyze Luke 22 as a farewell address, but it likewise works as a useful history to assess King Benjamin’s speech, as well as other farewells in Nephite texts.
  • 2 See William Kurz, “Luke 22:14–38 and Greco-Roman and Biblical Farewell Addresses,” Journal of Biblical Literature, 104, no. 2 (1985): 251–268, esp. 262–263.
  • 3 John W. Welch and Daryl T. Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” in King Benjamin’s Speech: “That Ye May Learn Wisdom,” ed. John W. Welch and Stephen D. Ricks (Provo, UT: FARMS, 1998), 89–117. For a much shorter summary of this research, see John W. Welch and Daryl T. Hague, “Benjamin’s Speech: A Classic Ancient Farewell Address,” in Reexploring the Book of Mormon: A Decade of New Research, ed. John W. Welch (Provo and Salt Lake City, UT: FARMS and Deseret Book, 1992), 120–123.
  • 4 Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 94. Concerning the value of Kurz’s study, the authors write, “Kurz’s analysis creates a useful literary tool for dissecting, comparing, and assessing the components of farewell speeches. While other scholars might wish to point out further elements in this genre or might place different degrees of emphasis on the various features, Kurz’s treatment offers a serviceable description of the standard literature that has emerged in farewell speeches in general” (p. 91).
  • 5 The contents of this chart have been adapted from Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 91–103 (which, in turn, was adapted from Kurz’s analysis). Some descriptions in the “Element” column have been adjusted, while others have been retained. Information in the column entitled “Element Description” is quoted verbatim. And the contents of the column titled “King Benjamin’s Speech” only paraphrase or otherwise loosely follow the related discussions in the article. In some cases, the descriptions in this column provide original insights.
  • 6 Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 103.
  • 7 Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 94. Note that element #14 (Mourning) is titled “Bewailing Loss” and element #20 is titled “ars moriendi” by Welch and Hague.
  • 8 Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 105.
  • 9 Welch and Hague must have simply overlooked it in their analysis, probably because it was given before the public speech. This, however, wouldn’t invalidate it, seeing that private counsel and consolation to close family members or followers is a typical component of farewell speeches.
  • 10 Some readers may interpret other elements as being less than clearly or fully present in the text. For instance, in an earlier publication, Welch and Hague listed element #7 (Blessings) as being “Not clearly found.” Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Speech: A Classic Ancient Farewell Address,” 122. They must have changed their minds about this in the second publication, however, because no similar caveat is given and the element is simply listed as being “present” rather than “implied” in their chart. See Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 98, 105. This shift in judgment makes sense, though, as Benjamin’s repeated discussion of blessings in Mosiah 2:2 can be reasonably interpreted as reaffirming the blessing more formally pronounced by Lehi upon his posterity and upon the land itself (2 Nephi 1:7–10, 20). Whether one agrees with each detail of Welch and Hague’s analysis, there can be little doubt that Benjamin’s speech is one of the most complete examples found in ancient literature.
  • 11 Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Speech: A Classic Ancient Farewell Address,” 121.
  • 12 See John W. Welch and Brent J. Schmidt, “Reading 2 Peter as a Far​ewell Text,” in The Ministry of Peter, the Chief Apostle, ed. Frank F. Judd Jr., Eric D. Huntsman, and Shon D. Hopkin (Provo and Salt Lake City, UT: Religious Studies Center and Deseret Book, 2014), 317–335.
  • 13 See Kurz, “Luke 22:14–38 and Greco-Roman and Biblical Farewell Addresses,” 262–263. The line of reasoning in this paragraph follows that given in Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 94.
  • 14 See Kurz, “Luke 22:14–38 and Greco-Roman and Biblical Farewell Addresses,” 262–263.
  • 15 Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 95. An additional reason to view Benjamin’s speech as an authentic Hebrew farewell address is that, in various ways, it parallels an ancient Jewish farewell attributed to an Israelite leader named Cenez. See pp. 104–115.
  • 16 See Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 105–106. As explained by the authors, “It exceeds the scope of this study to compare all the elements of these farewell speeches in depth, but even a cursory survey shows that most of Kurz’s farewell speech elements are present in these seven final statements or discourses in addition to Benjamin’s” (p. 104).
  • 17 As noted previously (see note #12), the only known speech which surpasses Benjamin’s is 2 Peter.
  • 18 As explained in Welch and Hague, “Benjamin’s Sermon as a Traditional Ancient Farewell Address,” 104, “Benjamin would have been aware of the farewell texts of Lehi, Nephi, Jacob, and Enos. After Benjamin, the tradition continued in the Book of Mormon, though it became much less distinct. Benjamin’s speech must be viewed as a part of this longstanding, venerable Nephite literary and rhetorical tradition, which very likely drew much of its strength from biblical sources.”
  • 19 See the review of the development of farewell scholarship in Katter, “Luke 22:14–38: A Farewell Address,” 5–16. The first cited work was written by Ethelbert Stauffer in 1950 (p. 5).
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