Did you know that Lehi dreamed of you? And not only of you but of your family and your trials? President Boyd K. Packer spoke of Lehi's dream and challenged listeners to find meaning in the drea: "You may think that Lehi's dream or vision has no special meaning for you, but it does. You are in it; all of us are in it. Nephi said, '[All scripture is likened] unto us, that it might be for our profit and learning' (1 Nephi 19:23). Lehi's dream or vision of the iron rod has in it everything a Latter-day Saint needs to understand the test of life."
Those who read of Lehi's dream today can sympathize with Lehi's plight. Lehi's dream speaks to all of us who find ourselves, at times, battling the dark and dreary trials of mortality. The dream exemplifies our own struggle to return to our Heavenly Father and can also guide us through this stage of the plan of salvation.
One individual who was clearly influenced by the power of Lehi's dream was his son Nephi, who, upon hearing his father recount the particulars of the dream, desired to have a similar revelatory experience. Nephi became a witness of and recorder to one of the most detailed visionary discourses on Christ's ministry. Nephi understood the individualized nature of his vision and provides a scriptural example of President Packer's invitation to find ourselves in the dream.
From the Book of Mormon's first printing, Lehi's dream and Nephi's vision have resonated in the latter-day spiritual imagination, fulfilling President Packer's challenge. Likewise, The Things Which My Father Saw presents several papers that provide insights into the ancient setting, the meaning of the symbols, and their gospel application, which were delivered at the 40th Sidney B. Sperry Symposium held at Brigham Young University. The Things Which My Father Saw helps us realize President Packer's hope that we can see that we "are in" this important passage of scripture.
The following gospel scholars are contributors to the 40th Annual Sperry Symposium on Lehi's dream and Nephi's vision:
Edited by Daniel L. Belnap, Gaye Strathearn, and Stanley A. Johnson
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