Alma 44 – End the Conflict

The battle between Nephite and Lamanite has come to a stall. The Nephites have their enemy surrounded. Moroni tells them that they are in his hands, but he does not wish to slay them. He wants an end to this conflict. His people haven’t started this war. The Lamanites have, because they are angry because of their religion.

But now, ye behold that the Lord is with us; and ye behold that he has delivered you into our hands. And now I would that ye should understand that this is done unto us because of our religion and our faith in Christ. And now ye see that ye cannot destroy this our faith.

Alma 44:3

Moroni boldly commands him in the name of God, and by their faith, their religion, their rites of worship, their church, and sacred support they owe their families, and by the “liberty which binds us to our lands and our country,” and by the sacred word of God (5), and “by all the desires which ye have for life” (6) that Zarahemnha and his army deliver up their weapons and surrender. If they don’t, he “will command my men that they shall fall upon you, and inflict the wounds of death in your bodies that ye may become extinct; and then we will see who shall have power over this people…” (7)

Boom!

Zerahemnah delivers up his weapons, but refuses to make a covenant of peace. If Moroni won’t accept that, Z says “we will retain our swords, and we will perish or conquer.” (8) He refuses to believe God has delivered the Nephites, but thinks it is their cunning and defensive armor that has helped them.

Their cunning and defensive armor did play a helpful role, but God delivered them. Make no mistake about that…and Moroni doesn’t. If they had used their cunning and armor alone, leaving God out of the equation, they might have triumphed short term, but never long-term. God uses our strengths to bring about victory, but mortal strength alone does not guarantee success. Only God does.

Moroni returns Zerahemnah’s weapons and says: Behold, we will end the conflict.” (10)

That is how we have to think. We can’t compromise our values and meet the enemy halfway and call it ‘good enough.’ The devil will never stop attacking us. If we give in to the world even a little, this opens the door a crack for the devil to get into our lives and bring us into captivity. We must commit to fight to the end, until the conflict is truly over and Satan is bound.

Moroni did not fear the overwhelming numbers of his enemy. He knew God was on their side. Zerahemnah rushes forward in anger to slay Moroni, “but as he raised his sword, behold, one of Moroni’s soldiers smote it even to the earth, and it broke by the hilt; and he also smote Zerahemnah that he took off his scalp and it fell to the earth.” (12)

Zerahemnah crawls away to seek protection from his soldiers. The solider who scalped him picks up his scalp with his sword and raises it in the air.

Even as this scalp has fallen to the earth, which is the scalp of your chief, so shall ye fall to the earth except ye will deliver up your weapons of war and depart with a covenant of peace.

Alma 44:14

Many come forward, struck with fear, and throw down their weapons and make this covenant. They are allowed to leave.

Zerahemnah stirs up the rest of his soldiers “to contend more powerfully against the Nephites.” (16) The Nephites begin to slaughter them again until Zerahemnah begs for mercy a second time and agrees to Moroni’s conditions.

And it came to pass that Moroni caused that the work of death should cease again among the people. (20)

Alma 44:20

He let them make the covenant and depart in peace. This shows they weren’t bloodthirsty. A bloodthirsty army—even one who’d been fighting for peace—would have sought revenge and destroyed them. Moroni, because his motives were pure, was able to cease and desist as soon as Zerahemnah humbled himself to make the oath of peace.

Once peace was restored, Moroni ended the conflict.

We can end the conflict as well by standing firm in our faith, never compromising with evil, and seeking for peace, through Jesus Christ.

~~~

Resources:

Come Follow Me manual – Book of Mormon 2020

If there is anything virtuous, lovely or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these comments.

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