Lessons from Chapters About Government in the Book of Mormon

During the month of May, I studied chapters in the Book of Mormon which discuss governments: the characteristics of good governments, the characteristics of good leaders, what we can do to contribute to good governments, and how to avoid activities which damage governments. I focused on the following stories:

  • Nephi, Zeniff, and Jared establish new civilizations (2 Nephi 5, Mosiah 9-10, Ether 6).
  • Mosiah establishes a system of judges (Mosiah 29).
  • Lamoni’s father proclaims religious freedom (Alma 23).
  • King Noah reigns in wickedness (Mosiah 11).
  • Gideon’s courage (Mosiah 19, 20, 22; Alma 1).
  • The Amlicites and Amalackiah create social unrest (Alma 2-3, 46-47).
  • The Gadianton robbers destroy the social order (Helaman 1-2, 6, 8; 3 Nephi 2, 6-7).
  • Four generations of peace after the visit of the Savior (4 Nephi).
  • Lessons from the reigns of the Jaredite kings (Ether 7-11).

From my study, I learned the following principles, which I have tried to incorporate into my life during the month:


Kindness and Inclusiveness



Fallacies of the Gadianton Robbers and Other Secret Combinations

  • Avoid the fallacies of the Gadianton robbers: Resist pride, and don’t collaborate in deceitful activities.
  • Avoid the fallacies of Jaredite secret combinations: Don’t prioritize loyalty to the group over decency to people outside of the group. Don’t attempt to retain loyalty by fear. Remember that God knows all things and that you can’t keep anything secret from Him.

Reasons to Avoid Monarchy as a Form of Government

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