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The Nephite Practice of Burying Treasure unto the Lord

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The following insight is based on the work of John L. Sorenson. It is not an original thought on my part.

In Helaman 13:19, the Lord, through Samuel the Lamanite, castigates the people for not burying treasure unto him: "For I will, saith the Lord, that they shall hide up their treasures unto me; and cursed be they who hide not up their treasures unto me; for none hideth up their treasures unto me save it be the righteous; and he that hideth not up his treasures unto me, cursed is he, and also the treasure, and none shall redeem it because of the curse of the land".

In the following verses we learn that the people buried treasure so as to hide it from their enemies, as they themselves fled for their lives. The Lord answers this by saying that if they are going to bury treasures for any reason then it should be unto Him. Some would argue that this reference to buried treasure is a throwback to Joseph's own treasure digging activities and magical beliefs. His culture and b…