Structural chapter reading chart: The Book of Mormon

23 October 2013




If you’re going to track your progress, you might as well learn something from your tracking chart, right?

Several nifty reading charts are out there for keeping track of your progress as you read the standard works (for example, they hand one out with the seminary Scripture Mastery cards). This one, however, is different because it also depicts the larger structure of the Book of Mormon, to help you get the big picture. Most books (the larger ones) have major and minor subdivisions. For example, 2 Nephi is subdivided into the words of Lehi (ch. 1–5), the words of Jacob (ch. 6–10), the words of Isaiah (ch. 11–30), and the words of Nephi (ch. 31–33). That third subdivision—the words of Isaiah—is further subdivided into actual quotes from Isaiah (ch. 12–24) and Nephi’s inspired commentary (ch. 25–30).

These subdivisions are based in part on the Structured Edition of the Book of Mormon—a customized version of the standard works that lays out the (unchanged) authorized text in paragraphs and with headings, so it looks more like a modern novel or textbook. If you’re interested in reading an edition of the scriptures that uses headings to depict this chart’s subdivisions in the actual text as you read, take a look at the Structured Edition of the standard works. You can download it for free.

If you like this reading chart, you may also be interested in the chart showing the original chapter breaks in the Book of Mormon. The first edition Joseph Smith published had different chapter breaks than those we use today (far fewer, in fact). Those original breaks were very likely indicated on the gold plates themselves, so they should be considered when looking for larger connections between passages.

Series: Structural Chapter Reading Charts

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  1. Josh

    Very well done!

  2. Jill

    These are really cool! Thanks!

  3. Lauralee Hansen

    I downloaded the PDF file, but could not open it. I am getting an error window that says the destination file could not be created. Any ideas? I am not very computer savvy. I love this chart and want to start using it for my family scripture study.

    • Nathan

      I sent you an email with the handout attached. I don’t know why it wasn’t working for you, but when I tested it on two different computers, it worked fine. Sorry for the trouble. Enjoy!

  4. Valerie Lee

    These are fantastic. I used the New Testament chart this year and just printed out the Book of Mormon chart for me and my husband this year. Now I am off to send all my sisters the link. πŸ™‚ Best reading chart ever!

    • Nathan

      Thanks, Valerie, I’m glad it’s being helpful for you! Let me know how it goes when you use it. πŸ™‚

  5. Kathy

    I didn’t know that I wanted something like this for the Book of Mormon study. But after seeing this, it’s just what I’ve wanted. Thanks for the effort and the sharing.

    • Nathan

      Thanks, Kathy. I feel kind of the same way—once I thought of the idea, I thought, “THAT’S the kind of reading chart I wanted growing up, only I didn’t know it!” πŸ™‚

  6. Alan Sanderson

    This is a great chart. I printed off four copies because my kids wanted them. Another one that they have liked is similar to this one:

    You may be interested in a reading chart I made which follows the subplots in an alternate order. It is interesting to read the story in a different order, and you sometimes notice things which never occurred to you when you read it this way:

    • Nathan

      That first link, on SugarDoodle, was the style I used in high school seminary and brings back memories. πŸ™‚

      I love your alternate chronology! I completely agree that there are many insights to be gleaned by reading through the scriptures in an alternate order. For example, I remember noticing that the Lamanite king who allies with Amlici at Alma 3 was very possibly Lamoni’s father, who later converted. Good thing Alma didn’t kill him in that battle! Also, my BYU teacher Todd Parker noted that Abinadi’s ministry and martyrdom had already occurred by the time of King Benjamin’s speech, and when you look at the themes covered by the angel who appeared to King Benjamin, they’re very similar to what Abinadi taught; Brother Parker suggested that the angel who appeared to Benjamin was in fact Abinadi himself, appearing post-martyrdom as a divine messenger. Pure speculation, of course, but fun!

      I’ve incorporated a similar reading plan (essentially the order you’ve created in your chart) into my Structured Edition of the scriptures. I call it a Chronological Reading Plan and put it in an appendix, and also put in little icons throughout the text (I call them “chronology markers”) that tell you where to jump around in your reading. If you follow them, you’ll read the entire standard works, but in an order that’s roughly more chronological.

      I haven’t posted my draft of the Book of Mormon yet, but you can see the chronological reading plan in my drafts of the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price that I’ve posted.

  7. Cecilia Lubniewski

    I am not able to open the file. It tells me it is corrupted. Can you help! Thanks.

    • Nathan

      That’s odd; when I try clicking on the icon in the green box above, it downloads and opens just fine. What exactly happens when you click on it?

  8. Debra York

    Good afternoon Nathan
    I am having trouble printing the schedule for the New and Old Testaments. I have found your approach so very refreshing but I am old school and prefer my reading/studies on paper not the screen. If it would not be too much trouble could you assist me please. I would so like to have all of the standard works to print out on A4 if that’s possible. Thank you for your assistance on this matter and for waking the scriptures up to me once more

    warm regards

    your sister in faith

  9. Nancy Holladay

    I love these and love to provide them to my seminary students. Do you have one yet for Old Testament? I know we are not there yet, but some students are reading that instead of rereading the Book of Mormon (since they won’t be studying Old Testament in Seminary). I’d love to be able to provide something like this for them.



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