King Benjamin’s Speech

Near the end of his life, King Benjamin gathered his people at the temple in Zarahemla to give them his final words of counsel. The purpose of the speech was twofold

  1. To relinquish the throne and name his son Mosiah as the new king
  2. To give his people a name which would distinguish them from all other people (Mosiah 1:10-11)

When the people gathered, they pitched their tents around the temple. There were so many people that King Benjamin spoke from a tower which had been erected for that specific purpose. Many of the people still couldn’t hear, so he had scribes write his words and deliver them to the people. (Mosiah 2:1-8)

Here is a summary of the speech:

  1. Review of Benjamin’s service as king and announcement of the new king (Mosiah 2)
    1. Introduction: please open your ears, hearts, and minds to my words (Mosiah 2:9).
    2. I am mortal, like you (Mosiah 2:10-11).
    3. I have served you faithfully as your king (Mosiah 2:12-16).
    4. You can learn three lessons from my service:
      1. When you serve other people, you are only serving God (Mosiah 2:17).
      2. If even the king serves you, you should serve each other (Mosiah 2:18).
      3. If I deserve any thanks, God deserves more (Mosiah 2:19).
    5. You cannot pay God back for all that He has done for you (Mosiah 2:20-24).
    6. You and I are mortal, and I will soon return to God (Mosiah 2:25-28).
    7. My son Mosiah is now your king (Mosiah 2:29-30).
    8. If you continue to keep the commandments, you will continue to prosper (Mosiah 2:31-41).
  2. Teachings of an angel about Jesus Christ (Mosiah 3)
    1. An angel gave me a joyful message (Mosiah 3:1-4).
    2. God will come to earth and live among us (Mosiah 3:5-10).
      1. He will work miracles (Mosiah 3:5-6).
      2. He will suffer for our sins (Mosiah 3:7).
      3. He will be called Jesus Christ, and His mother will be called Mary (Mosiah 3:8).
      4. He will be crucified and resurrected (Mosiah 3:9-10).
      5. He will judge the world (Mosiah 3:10).
    3. His blood atones for those who sin ignorantly (Mosiah 3:11-18).
    4. Those who know the truth are accountable for their actions (Mosiah 3:19-24).
      1. The natural man is an enemy to God (Mosiah 3:19).
      2. The knowledge of a Savior will spread. When that happens, adults must humble themselves and repent (Mosiah 3:20-21).
      3. You are now accountable, because you know these things (Mosiah 3:22-27).
  3. Retaining a remission of your sins (Mosiah 4)
    1. [The people pray for mercy and are spiritually reborn (Mosiah 4:1-3).]
    2. A recognition of your fallen state and of the goodness and power of God can enable you to be saved (Mosiah 4:4-8).
    3. Believe in God; believe that you must repent; then repent (Mosiah 4:9-10).
    4. Continue to do the things which allowed you to receive the love of God
      1. Remain humble, pray, and stand firm (Mosiah 4:11-12).
      2. Live peaceably with each other (Mosiah 4:13).
      3. Take care of your children and teach them (Mosiah 4:14-15).
      4. Give to the beggar (Mosiah 4:16-26).
      5. Do all of these things in wisdom and order (Mosiah 4:27).
      6. If you borrow something, return in (Mosiah 4:28).
      7. Watch your thoughts, words, and deeds (Mosiah 4:29-30).
  4. Taking upon yourself the name of Christ (Mosiah 5)
    1. [The people enter a covenant to obey God until the end of their lives (Mosiah 5:1-5).]
    2. You are now the children of Christ (Mosiah 5:6-7).
    3. You should take upon yourselves His name (Mosiah 5:8).
    4. If you do so, you will be on God’s right hand at the last day (Mosiah 5:9-10).
    5. Retain the name: don’t let it be blotted out by transgression (Mosiah 5:11-12).
    6. Christ’s name can only truly be yours if you choose to serve Him (Mosiah 5:13-14).
    7. Be steadfast and immovable, that Christ may seal you His (Mosiah 5:15).