- Alma 43-52: “Stand Fast in the Faith of Christ” (August 3-9)Twenty five—that’s how old Moroni was when he began commanding the Nephite armies. Thirteen years later, he stepped down to “spend the remainder of his days in peace” (Alma 62:43). What kind of man was he? Mormon makes it clear that Moroni “did not delight in bloodshed” but that he was committed to the liberty of his people (Alma 48:11, Alma 55:19). He was innovative, inspiring, and unyielding in his defense of the oppressed. As a result, he successfully led the Nephites to victory over two invading armies, the first led by a man named Zerahemnah, and the second led by a man named Amalickiah. A couple of years ago, I spent a month studying all of the war chapters in the Book of Mormon, including the chapters we are studying this week. Here is a post summarizing what I learned that month, including lessons about acting with integrity, preparing for the future, and praying with faith:
When and how to defend yourself and others
- Do as little harm as possible: When Is Violence Justified?
- Defending the truth without enmity: We Do Not Desire to Be Men of Blood – Alma 44:1
- Are you willing to consider other people’s perspectives? We Are Not of Your Faith – Alma 44:9
- Don’t lower your standards: He Durst Not Go Down – Alma 47:10-12
- Preparing for the future: What Does the Book of Mormon Teach About Self-Reliance? What Does the Book of Mormon Teach About Provident Living?
- Multiple lines of defense: Heaps of Earth, Timbers, and Frames of Pickets – Alma 50:1-6
- Be careful whom you trust: He Being a Very Subtle Man – Alma 47:3-4
Leadership lessons from Moroni
- Seven exemplary attributes: Moroni Was a Strong and a Mighty Man – Alma 48:11-13
- The power of a single person to inspire others: What Was the Title of Liberty?
- Prioritizing: It Was His First Care – Alma 51:13-16
- Steadiness and consistency: Supposing by Their Numbers to Overpower Teancum- Alma 52:21-24
- Trusting the people you lead: How Can I Delegate More Effectively?
- Motives matter: In That Selfsame Hour That They Cried unto the Lord – Alma 43:48-50
- Keeping our prosperity in perspective: They Grew Rich in Their Own Eyes – Alma 45:24
- How our decisions change us: They Became More Hardened and Impenitent – Alma 47:36
- Creating tangible reminders of our promises: He Caused the Title of Liberty to Be Hoisted upon Every Tower – Alma 46:36
- Praying with sincerity and with intensity: What Does It Mean to Pour Out Your Soul to God?
Mormon opens his account of the seven-year war between the Nephites and the Lamanites by focusing on two leaders: Amalickiah and Moroni. After describing the influence Amalickiah had over many of the Nephites and the disruptive effect of his leadership, Mormon explains what we can learn from this story: We…see the great wickedness one very… Continue Reading →
Mormon’s description of the end of Alma’s life is mysterious: He departed out of the land of Zarahemla, as if to go into the land of Melek. And it came to pass that he was never heard of more; as to his death or burial we know not of (Alma 45:18). Those are the facts…. Continue Reading →
Two different military leaders asked Alma for guidance on two different occasions. Notice how similar these two stories are: Now Zoram and his two sons, knowing that Alma was high priest over the church, and having heard that he had the spirit of prophecy, therefore they went unto him and desired of him to know… Continue Reading →
Captain Moroni was a successful military leader partly because of his emotional intelligence. He made it a point to observe the “intent” of the enemy and the “intent” of his own troops. For example: As Moroni knew the intention of the Lamanites, that it was their intention to destroy their brethren, or to subject them… Continue Reading →
As we’ve studied about Alma’s words to Corianton this week, I’ve wondered about Corianton’s subsequent activities. Alma is clearly concerned about him, not only because of his behavior but because of misunderstandings which have thus far held him back from repenting. Were Alma’s words effective in helping Corianton to change? We don’t hear much more… Continue Reading →
Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah would come to fix broken things and to give people things they had lost: The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the… Continue Reading →
God is both just and merciful. Multiple Book of Mormon prophets testify of this, including Lehi (2 Nephi 2:12), Nephi (2 Nephi 11:5), Jacob (Jacob 4:10), King Benjamin (Mosiah 5:15), Alma (Alma 42:15), and Mormon (3 Nephi 26:5, Mormon 6:22). We ought to be just and merciful as well: See that you are merciful unto… Continue Reading →
King Benjamin taught his people that they should administer to the relief of others “both spiritually and temporally, according to their wants” (Mosiah 4:26). Alma gave the same commandment to the members of the newly organized church at the waters of Mormon (Mosiah 18:27-29). What does it mean to administer relief spiritually? One example might… Continue Reading →
Throw a pebble into the water, and you’ll see ripples expanding in concentric circles around the point of impact. Our actions are like that. We may only be aware of the first-order consequences of our decisions, but they surely have additional consequences that we cannot see. Alma pointed out to his son Corianton one of… Continue Reading →
After identifying a major sin his son has committed, Alma preemptively refutes a potential justification: Yea, she did steal away the hearts of many; but this was no excuse for thee, my son. Thou shouldst have tended to the ministry wherewith thou wast entrusted (Alma 39:4). Several chapters later, at the end of Alma’s remarks,… Continue Reading →
In March, 2019, I studied 20 different names or titles of Jesus Christ which appear in the Book of Mormon. I was particularly interested in the way each name was used, both in the Book of Mormon and in the Bible.
In 2018, I wrote summaries of many of the sermons in the Book of Mormon. Each summary describes the setting, the purpose, an outline of the sermon’s content, and my takeaways from the sermon.
In 2019, I used the Book of Mormon to study 365 questions—one per day. Here is a list of those questions, grouped by category, with a link to the blog post for each question.