Thursday, June 14, 2012

Book of Mormon Study - Alma 44

Can I just say that Captain Moroni is awesome! He keeps an eternal perspective during battle. Even after he captures the Lamanites, he uses it as an opportunity to testify (vv 3,4.) He could have been vindictive or acted out of anger, but Captain Moroni offered them freedom in return for an oath.

Then Moroni met with Zarahemnah, and explained to him that the Nephites weren't a bloodthirsty people, and that even though they were in their "hands", they really didn't want to kill them... they didn't want to fight, but they were willing to fight for some things.

And then Captain Moroni did an extraordinary thing: He offered them their lives if they would be willing to give up their weapons and their anger. This offer reminds me of the Savior. He too offers us life if we are willing to give up our weapons or our sins or our bad habits.

And what did Zarahemnah do? He handed over his weapons, but refused to "take an oath" agreeing never again to war against the Nephites...saying that he knew it could not be kept; then he asked Moroni to accept their weapons & allow them to go, or they would stand & fight 'til they either conquered or died. Crazy!

But, Moroni handed him back his weapons, insisting that the Lamanites either pledge to end warring against the Nephites, or they would "end the conflict" by "spilling their blood upon the ground"...

This is intense!

Zarahemnah declined, and rushed forward to slay Moroni, but one of Moroni's men intervened and whacked off Zarahemnah's scalp...Zarahemnah returned to his men, and many of the Lamanites, who feared for their lives, came forward and delivered their weapons and entered into a covenant of peace...and as many as did this were allowed to flee in safety...

However, Zarahemnah was furious and stirred up those who remained to anger and they began again to fight the Nephites, who began again to kill them off in astounding numbers...until it got so bad that even Zarahemnah & his surviving soldiers, began to be afraid for their lives, so much so that they agreed to give up their weapons and enter into an oath that they would never come again to war against the Nephites...and they were allowed to go home...

It is a very sad chapter. The Lamanites were given the chance to live, but they let pride, anger and hatred lead them to a painful grave. It makes me look at my life. Have I let opportunities go by because of my pride or anger? Have I caused myself undo grief and pain? Yup…I have. Going forward, I will try my hardest not to.

What did you think?

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