Who was Jesus of Nazareth? What was his mission? What do we know of his birth, his early life, and his ministry? Who were his disciples? What were the conditions in Palestine in the Meridian of Time, when he walked the earth and mingled with men? In his earlier work, The Promised Messiah, Elder McConkie discussed the prophecies concerning the Messiah. Now, in The Mortal Messiah, Book 1, he writes about how the prophecies were coming to pass as the Advent of the Messiah approached the conditions in Palestine and among the Jews at that time: the birth of the forerunner, John the Baptist, and of Jesus himself: his childhood; his baptism and early ministry.