The worst of times can bring out the best in us. That seems to be Mormon’s message as he highlights the remarkable faith and courage of Captain Moroni, Teancum, and the sons of Helaman during the seven-year war between the Nephites and the Lamanites. This week, we are studying the following events:
- Helaman recruits 2,000 young warriors, known as “the sons of Helaman,” “the armies of Helaman,” or the “stripling warriors” (Alma 53).
- Moroni attempts to negotiate for the exchange of prisoners, then finds a way to rescue the Nephite prisoners without bloodshed (Alma 54-55).
- Helaman describes the miraculous success of his young warriors in a letter to Captain Moroni (Alma 56-58).
- Moroni and Pahoran exchange letters about the reasons for the lack of support from the government (Alma 59-61).
- The final battle, including the death of Teancum (Alma 62).
- Epilogue: What happened just after the war (Alma 63).
Lessons from the Sons of Helaman
- We earn trust by being serious and sensible: They Were Men Who Were True at All Times – Alma 53:20-21
- Young people can accomplish miracles as they trust in the faith of their parents: What Can We Learn from the Women in the Book of Mormon?
- Commit to a course of action and hold steady: How Can We Overcome Our Doubts?
- It’s important for a leader to have good judgement: We Were Not Sufficiently Strong – Alma 56:39-40
- Respect the agency of those you lead: What Say Ye, My Sons? – Alma 56:43-44
- Focus your thoughts on your highest priorities: They Did Think More… – Alma 56:47
- Be vigilant; don’t throw your freedom away: What Does It Mean to “Stand Fast in the Liberty Wherewith God Hath Made Us Free?”
- Trust the promises of God, even before you see them being fulfilled: The Lord Our God Did Visit Us with Assurances – Alma 58:10-11
- Unity creates power: With Exactness – Alma 57:21
- Be honest, but speak in hopeful and constructive terms: Is It Wrong to Complain?
Lessons from the Rescue of the Nephite Prisoners
- Hypocrisy is unsustainable: I Am a Bold Lamanite – Alma 54:23-24
- The way you define your mission will affect the way you fulfill it, including how you treat other people along the way: He Did Not Delight in Murder or Bloodshed – Alma 55:18-19
Lessons from Moroni and Pahoran
- Deal promptly with the root causes of an issue: What Does It Mean to Cleanse the Inward Vessel?
- Don’t avoid difficult conversations, even if they are messy: Was Captain Moroni Right to Chastise Pahoran so Harshly?
- Leaders have an extra responsibility to be diligent, because their negligence affects other people: Ye Ought to Have Stirred Yourselves More Diligently – Alma 60:8-10
- Words of truth, courageously spoken, can inspire courage in others: I Was Somewhat Worried Concerning What We Should Do – Alma 61:19-20
- Keep things in perspective, set aside your ego, and maintain your composure: I Am Not Angry – Alma 61:9
Lessons from the End of the War
- Adversity can strengthen us—depending on how we respond: “They Did Humble Themselves” – Mosiah 21:13-14
- Be courageous, but not reckless: What Can We Learn from Teancum’s Assassinations of Two Lamanite Kings?
- Some tasks can’t be effectively delegated, because the leader needs firsthand knowledge: Moroni Went Forth – Alma 62:20-21
- Don’t hold back from pursuing new opportunities: They Took Their Course Northward – Alma 63:5-9