All This Was Done in Mormon – Mosiah 18:30

30 And now it came to pass that all this was done in Mormon, yea, by the waters of Mormon, in the forest that was near the waters of Mormon; yea, the place of Mormon, the waters of Mormon, the forest of Mormon, how beautiful are they to the eyes of them who there came to the knowledge of their Redeemer; yea, and how blessed are they, for they shall sing to his praise forever.

When Abinadi began to preach to King Noah and his priests, they tried to stump him by asking him to explain a passage from Isaiah. The passage begins with the phrase, “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings” (Mosiah 12:21; see also Isaiah 52:7). After reviewing the Ten Commandments and the Atonement of Jesus Christ, Abinadi clarified that the phrase refers to the joy people feel when they accept the gospel and the gratitude they feel toward those who shared it with them:

And again, how beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of those that are still publishing peace!
And again, how beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of those who shall hereafter publish peace, yea, from this time henceforth and forever! (Mosiah 15:16-17)

Just a few chapters later, as Mormon describes the joy of the people who were converted by the preaching of Alma, he uses essentially the same phrase to describe their feelings about the place where this event took place. The place where Alma taught his people had been named “Mormon” by the king. According to the passage above, this name referred not only to the place but to the spring of water located there as well as the “thicket of small trees” where Alma hid during the day (Mosiah 18:4-5). This group of people, who had lost the gospel but were now receiving it again, would forever associate the joy of their conversion with this place, which was called Mormon, and it would forever be “beautiful” in their eyes.
As Mormon later explains, he was named after this place:

And behold, I am called Mormon, being called after the land of Mormon, the land in which Alma did establish the church among the people, yea, the first church which was established among them after their transgression (3 Nephi 5:12).

There is great symbolic meaning in this name. Just as Lehi named a river and a valley after two of his sons to encourage positive attributes (1 Nephi 2:9-10), and just as Helaman named his sons after their first forefathers on this continent (Helaman 5:6-7), Mormon’s parents named him after a place which had great spiritual significance to his people. Surely, this name motivated him to preach the gospel in the hopes of bringing others the great blessings that the people of Alma had received at this place.
Today, I will remember the joy I have felt as I have learned the gospel and applied the Atonement of Jesus Christ in my life. I will remember the feelings associated with the places where I have felt the Spirit, and I will be grateful to the people who have taught me so that I could experience the joy of the gospel in my life.

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