Jarom 1:6 - 1:10
Jarom 1:6 And they were scattered upon much of the face of the land, and the Lamanites also. And they were exceedingly more numerous than were they of the Nephites; and they loved murder and would drink the blood of beasts.
The population according to Jarom is all over the country they occupy as are the Lamanites. There are more Lamanites then Nephites however. And the Lamanites are still a savage people drinking blood and loving to go on raiding parties against the Nephites.
[It would be very interesting to know just how much territory the Nephites and Lamanites had settled. Was it all over Central American? Or was it a small area such as the area of one of the countries in central America? And even more interesting how many of the people that were already there joined up with them or they mixed in with the indigenece population. I feel sure that the Nephites were getting their numbers by preaching the gospel, whereas the Lamanites were just "going with the flow."
Jarom 1:7 And it came to pass that they came many times against us, the Nephites, to battle. But our kings and our leaders were mighty men in the faith of the Lord; and they taught the people the ways of the Lord; wherefore, we withstood the Lamanites and swept them away out of our lands, and began to fortify our cities, or whatsoever place of our inheritance.
The Lamanites had, indeed, been raiding Nephite cities. But the rulers of the Nephites, being righteous men, were able to teach the people to trust in the Lord to the point that they were able to fight them off causing the Lamanites to withdraw back to their own lands. They could not live because they could not plunder.
Jarom 1:8 And we multiplied exceedingly, and spread upon the face of the land, and became exceedingly rich in gold, and in silver, and in precious things, and in fine workmanship of wood, in buildings, and in machinery, and also in iron and copper, and brass and steel, making all manner of tools of every kind to till the ground, and weapons of war—yea, the sharp pointed arrow, and the quiver, and the dart, and the javelin, and all preparations for war.
Jarom gives us a few words on what the Nephites had in the way of material goods since their arrival in the promise land. They were rich in gold and silver and other things that were consider valuable. They became experts in working with wood in the construction of wooden buildings. Their metallurgy included iron, copper, brass and steel for the making of tools and war materials. They had prepared for war with the manufacture of bows and arrows, darts, javelin, etc.
[The precious things must have been easy to see and must have been laying about in plain site. Since Nephi was making swords that were a copy of Laban’s sword which was made of steel, Nephi must have been familiar with how to make steel with he taught the people. It would be interesting to know just what knowledge was among the people already there that the Nephites picked up such as in warfare. It would also be interesting to know just how much knowledge the Nephites had which they passed on to the people living there.]
Jarom 1:9 And thus being prepared to meet the Lamanites, they did not prosper against us. But the word of the Lord was verified, which he spake unto our fathers, saying that: Inasmuch as ye will keep my commandments ye shall prosper in the land.
Their preparations for war paid off as the Nephites were successful in defeating the Lamanites whenever they attached them. The Nephites were obeying the commandments so the promise of protection by the Lord was given as the Lord had promised to the faithful. Prosperity and wealth also came as a result of their faithfulness.
Jarom 1:10 And it came to pass that the prophets of the Lord did threaten the people of Nephi, according to the word of God, that if they did not keep the commandments, but should fall into transgression, they should be destroyed from off the face of the land.
Their faithfulness was only after much hard preaching by the prophets. The Nephites were told repeatedly that if they did not live the commandments, they would be destroyed as sure as the sun comes up every morning and they would cease to be a presence in the promised land.