I love this story of how converted the sons of Mosiah became to the Lord. They’d done bad things, had been called the vilest of sinners, yet once they had a change of heart, they became the most devoted missionaries ever. They couldn’t bear to see others blinded by Satan and unable to find the truth.
When my daughter served a mission in Korea, she’d written home that during General Conference, when the prophets speak to us, she stopped watching just for herself and began listening to know how to help others. She listened to know how to help the beautician who did her hair. She listened to know how to help the single mother in her ward have more hope.
- When I study God’s words and listen to His prophets, am I seeking for ways to help and give to others?
- What words of inspiration can I find to help someone in the midst of a difficult trial?
- Do I seek for the Spirit to be with me, to know how to lift and bless others?
When we receive a remission of our sins and really feel the power of the Atonement, we will want to bless the lives of others—give them of our spiritual bounty so they can access that heavenly power as well.
The sons of Mosiah desire to do this with their enemies, the Lamanites. They want to give them knowledge of God, convince them of the iniquities of their fathers, and cure them of their hatred to they “might also be brought to rejoice in the Lord their God, that they might become friendly to one another, and that there should be no more contentions in all the land…” (2)
Now they were desirous that salvation should be declared to every creature, for they could not bear that any human soul should perish; yea, even the very thought that any soul should endure endless torment did cause them to quake and tremble.
And thus did the Spirit of the Lord work upon them, for they were the very vilest of sinners. And the Lord saw fit in his infinite mercy to spare them.”Mosiah 28:3-4
I love how the Lord spared the sons of Mosiah and their friend Alma—the vilest of sinners—so that they could have the chance to care for others. And they do.
They plead with their father, the king, to let them go to their enemy. Mosiah prays many days about this request. This was a dangerous mission. But instead of relying on his own understanding (which probably would’ve led him to say no, to keep his sons safe), he took the matter to the Lord .
The Lord answers him:
Let them go up, for many shall believe on their words, and they shall have eternal life; and I will deliver thy sons out of the hands of the Lamanites.”Mosiah 28:7
His sons leave to go about the Lord’s work, but that leaves Mosiah with no one to leave the kingdom to. He puts his life in order, gathering all the plates he has preserved and the ones he’s translated from Limhi’s people.
Mosiah was a righteous prophet/king who had the gift to translate. The plates Mosiah translates give a record of the Jaredites—“the people who were destroyed, from the time that they were destroyed back to the building of the great tower, at the time the Lord confounded the language of the people and they were scattered abroad upon the face of all the earth, yea, and even from that time back until the creation of Adam.” (17)
This record will be unveiled later in the Book of Mormon. For now, Mosiah confers this great treasure of spiritual history upon Alma the younger to protect (20).
To sum up this chapter, God spares His sons and daughters from eternal misery, but He expects us to care for others to show our gratitude for this infinite blessing.
How am I doing in showing Him I care?