Tuesday, June 11, 2013

My Heart Groaneth

Because of its poetic form, verses 16-35 of Second Nephi chapter 4 are often referred to as "the psalm of Nephi."1 Nephi's psalm is an individual lament about Nephi's own status as an ever-repenting sinner.  It is important to note that this lament is not one of self-pity.  The purpose of Nephi's words is not to declare "Wo is me, for I am a sinner and will always be a sinner."  His attitude is one of solemn introspection coupled with a commitment to trust in the Lord.  This type of lamentation is similar to the seven penitential psalms found in the Old Testament (see Psalms 6, 32, 38, 51, 69, 102, 130).2