Zarahemla is staying on a good path as there have been no contentions among the people or any war for the time that Alma had been away. Here in Alma 16, however, the tides change a bit. Don’t forget to visualize and see yourself in these settings.
The cry of war is heard throughout Zarahemla, the Lamanites are coming and so war it is. The Lamanites came into Ammonihah and utterly destroyed the city. They killed most of the inhabitants, but did take some captive and carried them away into the wilderness. So gross and great was the destruction of Ammonihah that there were wild beasts and mangled dogs tearing apart the carcasses. The bodies were covered but in a shallow grave and so great was the stench of death that the land could not be lived in for many years and the Nephites no longer called the land Ammonihah, but Desolation of Nehors. While the loss of human life is not an amusing fact, these people were clearly told that they would suffer the wrath of God if they did not repent, and so they did.
Now, those that were carried away captive, a good man named Zoram wanted to take his two sons and the armies that they led into the wilderness to save the captured people if possible. Zoram, being a member of the church went to Alma and asked him if they should go to attempt a rescue. Alma not only gave him his blessing, but told Zoram exactly where to go to find the people and go up against the Lamanites. I imagine there was a battle, but the scriptural account only tells us that the Lamanites were “scattered and driven into the wilderness.” (verse 8) Every person that was taken captive was saved with no harm done to them.
Zoram returns to Zarahemla and there we learn that the church is thriving and many people have turned to the Lord and they are doing well. There have been priests that have been called and they preach repentance and teach the people of what is not okay to do such as: lying, jealousy, murder, adultery and so forth. As this chapter concludes, we learn that the people of the church begin in inquire when it is that Jesus Christ, their Redeemer will come.
Stay tuned to see what we will learn!
I leave this with you in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, Amen.