"And it is many hundred years after the coming of Christ that I deliver these records into the hands of my son; and it supposeth me that he will witness the entire destruction of my people. But may God grant that he may survive them, that he may write somewhat concerning them, and somewhat concerning Christ, that perhaps some day it may profit them."
Knowing what the Book of Mormon is, knowing the records are true as stated in most fast and testimony meetings is different than living and experiencing the Gospel like the people in the book did. I think we neglect it when we as a people just claim ownership of a record that we chant is true.
Mormon here lets us know about some incredible hindsight, "many hundred years". Imagine what hundreds of years of hindsight would do to your perspective as you compile records! He has a whole stockpile of non tampered with records that include before, during, and after Christ. The guy is well informed of a ton of history. That would give you amazing perspective of what to include and what matters most as you insert words into the "past" as part of your compilation. You'd see clearly what panned out, and what didn't, what held true, and what was lost and forgotten or lead to destruction. There's a common phrase "Hindsight is 20/20" I think Mormon's sight here is therefore worth listening to.
"Entire destruction". Not part, but entire destruction. What does destruction even mean? Is it annihilated? Is it just physical death? Is it also have reference to a spiritual destruction?
Mormon knows the course that will lead to Eternal Life, as opposed to the course which many follow that is broad, and wide, and leads to destruction of lives (3 Nephi 14:13-14). He can thus see that his people are for the most part following the latter one, but of course they probably didn't see it that way. Doesn't mean his people weren't religious, we learn that they were religious, it was corrupt though, and lost it's power.
Next Mormon offers what to me sounds like a prayer. Although the text is addressed to future readers, it makes me wonder who he is actually talking to in this next line. "May God grant that he may survive them"..... Sounds like he's more praying to God than talking to us. I love that phrase "May God grant". A father's prayer for His son. He speaks of survival, no doubt the temporal kind amidst the wars, and no doubt also the spiritual kind of survival as well.
Mormon has Eternal life, he has been visited by angels, seen Christ and knows God, he knows God will grant these things to those who seek it and harken to God's voice. Not "of themselves" but by the mercy, grace and power of God. So is Mormon a true messenger? I think he is.
Reading Moroni's words later in the book of Moroni shows me that the above request was granted, Moroni survived longer than he expected, and would not deny Christ. He saw Christ, Angels and had Eternal Life. Prophets like him held the sealing power and it wasn't restricted to a organizational "office", as we think of it now days. The power came directly from God, not passed from man to man. We like to point out how men hold Priesthood keys in our day. But can the Lord still use the keys at his own discretion? Or is He to stay in the background now that keys have been given to men?
"That perhaps someday it may profit them". Perhaps. It's always up to each individual. o we profit from simply having these writings? Or does the profit come from doing something else with these writings?