Helaman

Helaman 16

As Samuel stood atop the walls speaking the words he was told to by the angels, many believed on his words.  Those who did, went and sought out Nephi, the son of Helaman and confessed their sins and desired to be baptized.  There were just as many that did not believe as those that did.

Those that were in the angry category did what they could to kill Samuel.  The cast stones at him, they shot arrows at him.  And when they tried to take his life, they were unable to do so. When the Nephites saw that they couldn’t harm Samuel, some of them realized that God was protecting him and many more went to Nephi to join the flock.

Helaman 16: 4 reads this “For behold, Nephi was baptizing, and prophesying, and preaching, crying repentance unto the people, showing signs and wonders, working miracles among the people, that they might know that the Christ must shortly come-“.   I particularly love this verse because we can see that Nephi was a man of God and that as he was baptizing, we see even more how Christ like Nephi was.  I imagine him healing the lepers, giving the blind their sight and so forth as we know that Jesus Christ did when he was in his years of ministry.

Many Nephites, however, still did not believe on the prophesying that was being given and since they already learned that the couldn’t hit him with stones or arrows, they tried to take him captive.  As they tried to do this, Samuel came down from the wall and fled back to his own land and continued preaching there.  This ends the prophesying of Samuel among the Nephite people and “thus were the affairs of the people.”  I find this statement so sad.  Many chose not to believe and therefore chased their only prophet from the land and thus the people were left as they were.    Can you relate this to the prophet Joseph Smith?

A few years go by and people become more hardened in their hearts and then the time of Christ’s birth came and all of the signs that were prophesied came true. “And angels did appear unto men, wise men, and did declare unto them glad tidings of great joy…. Nevertheless, the people began to harden their hearts, all save it were the most believing part of them, both of the Nephites and also of the Lamanites”.  The people then just decided to say that these great wonders were good guesses by the prophets and decided that if Jesus Christ was the Son of God that he could just come on over and show himself to them.  They decided that these believes that have been prophesied about for thousands of years now were wicked traditions and an art of evil.  It was said that the people imagined many more foolish and vain things in their hearts and spread rumors and contentions and Satan had a great hold upon their hearts upon all the face of the land.

This is the end of the Book of Helaman, and I do hope that you were able to learn a thing or two from your own studies this past week.  I pray that you are well and that the Spirit will reside with you and in your home.

I leave this with you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

 

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Helaman

Helaman 8

Corrupt judges?   Say it isn’t so…. but it is.  Let’s see what those hooligans are up to in Helaman 8.  Don’t forget to think about where they are.

Where is Nephi? Up on the tower in his garden.  In a state of sadness because of the wickedness of the Nephites.

Where are the Nephites?  In Zarahemla.  In an awful state of wickedness and unbelief.

Where are the judges? In Zarahemla.  In a more wicked state than the Nephites.

Nephi spoke out against the judges of the land because of their corruptness.  He told of how they have perverted the laws of God and the laws of the land to suit their own needs.  But they still believed, at least some in the power of God because they were too afraid to touch Nephi to bring him down off of his tower.  Nephi continued to preach and to tell them of the prophets that have come before him and of the power of the Lord and miracles that he has performed that the Nephites know to be true.  Nephi again calls the people unto repentance and tells them that even as they stand there and listen to him speak that the chief judge has been murdered and lies in his own blood.  On top of the news of the murder, he tells them who it is that killed him.

Can you imagine being right there at the feet of a prophet that is telling you that he has the knowledge of events without being present?  Can you imagine the feelings coursing through Nephi as he reveals to the people that this crime has been committed?  What powerful feelings and what a place to stand!

I leave this with you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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Alma

Alma 59

I’m on a countdown. 5.

Here in Alma 59 we learn that Moroni is pretty unhappy with the government of the Nephites.  Have you ever been unhappy with how the government leaders are behaving?  I know that I have.  What if you were Moroni, and the leader of all of the soldiers and you asked the government to send more supplies and more troops because we are going to lose this war if they didn’t help… and the government just didn’t seem to care one way or the other.  I bet you would be pretty cranky too.

The other big piece of information that we get from this chapter is that Moroni realizes that the reason that the war is going in favor of the Lamanites is that the Nephites are not living righteously.  After everything that has happened and all of the battles that have been fought, the blessings of Heavenly Father are not present because the people aren’t keeping their covenants.  Prophecy has been given that the Nephites would prosper in the land as long as they kept their covenants and lived by the commandments.

I leave this short post with you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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Alma

Alma 4

We see the happenings of Alma 4 even today.  We have scripture telling us what not to do, yet we still do.  The warnings have been given, the prophesy has been told.  The fulfillment will happen and we will each answer for our own wickedness or righteousness upon the earth come judgement day.

This isn’t a very long chapter to begin with, but to make a short story even shorter:  The Nephites originally believed that they lost all of their families in battle due to their transgressions and many people turned their hearts to God.  Over the course of the next year though, many people began to be puffed up in pride because they were thriving as a people.  These people stopped following basic kindness rules and helping the needy and the poor which eventually lead to them being wicked.  Alma decided that he needed to act.  Alma chose a righteous man named Nephihah and he delivered up the chief judge position to him and kept the high priest seat to himself.  Alma then began to go out to the people to bear his testimony and turn the hearts of the people back to Heavenly Father.  Alma believed that these actions were going to be the only way to save the Nephites from utter annihilation.

And I leave this with you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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Mosiah

Mosiah 20

There are a few things that I learned to love when I was a little girl.  One of those things are dragons.  My dad collected dragon items, mostly painted ceramics, but he also had some little stuffed animals and such too.  I loved to look at them, and saw them as majestic.  While, there are scriptures that infer that dragons are associated with Satan, I prefer to just keep dreaming in my childhood world and see them as magical creatures, with reassurance from the scriptures that once upon a time, there were dragons on earth.  Okay, now moving on a little from there, dragons are mentioned here in Mosiah 20, hence the  quote and the picture here.  But, why there be dragons, or mention of dragons at least?

So there was a nice little clearing in the woods where the daughters of the Lamanites got together and sang and danced and had a good time.  One day, there were a few ladies there and those nasty priests of Noah saw them and kidnapped 24 of these young women.  Guess who’s going to be mad… the Lamanites. So the king of the Lamanites jumped to conclusions and thought that the people that were in bondage stole their children and so they came at them for battle.  It so happens, that Limhi had seen from the tower that they were coming and he and his people prepared to meet them for battle.  Verses 10-11 read thus: “And it came to pass that the battle became exceedingly sore, for they fought like lions for their prey. And it came to pass that the people of Limhi began to drive the Lamanites before them; yet they were not half so numerous as the Lamanites.  But they fought for their lives, and for their wives, and for their children; therefore they exerted themselves and like dragons did they fight.”

As they are driven back, the king of the Lamanites is found to be wounded laying among the dead.  The people of Limhi snatch him up and take him to Limhi.  The people want the Lamanite king dead, but Limhi is wise.  The two of them have a chat and Limhi learns that the Lamanites are mad because of their missing daughters.   Limhi understands and says that he will search his people for their missing daughters, and then Gideon steps in.  Gideon reminds Limhi of the priests in the wilderness and suggests that they are most likely to blame and then this information is shared with the Lamanite king.

Meanwhile, the Lamanites are gathering reinforcements and preparing to come against the people of Limhi again.  The king of the Lamanites and Limhi agree to go forth, unarmed to meet the Lamanites.  They do so and explain the situation.  The bondage still stands, but there is not another battle.

More to come…. stay tuned.

I leave this great story of battle with you, with memories of my childhood and happy times.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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Mosiah

Mosiah 19

A new man is again introduced here in Mosiah 19, Gideon.  There may be some prophesy fulfilled too.  If you’re curious now, you can read about that prophecy here…. Does anyone else get frustrated when technology talks back to you?  My laptop just kept telling me to connect the device that was already connected in order to import.   So frustrating, but I finally got it squared away after a reboot.  Sheesh!  Okay, now back to Mosiah 19.

Now, do you remember Limhi from the earlier chapters in Mosiah?  We’re about to read about him now, in the infancy of his leadership of the people when Ammon meets him.  But there’s some juicy things that happen between this point and Ammon, so let’s get to it.

So, king Noah’s army was in search of the people of the Lord and they came back to Noah empty-handed.  Other people in the city became discontent and a strong man named Gideon came forth and he was “an enemy to the king.” Gideon swore that he would kill Noah.  They had a great sword fight and Noah fled up to the top of the tower and there he saw that the Lamanites were coming to the city for war.  Gideon, chose to spare Noah’s life so that Noah could get the people out of the city.  Now, we know that Noah isn’t a great man at all, after all, he just had Abinadi burned alive, right?  Anyway, in verse 19, the author tells us that Now wasn’t really worried about the people, but only about himself.  Noah gets the people to run from the city, but the Lamanites begin to overtake them and kill some of them.  As this happens, Noah tells the men to leave their families behind and flee. (Say what?, Who does this?)  Some of the men, chose the right and stayed with their families, and some of them followed the king without their families into the wilderness.

The men that made the righteous choice here, chose to talk to the Lamanites and ask for their compassion.  The Lamanites chose to not kill them, because their women were so pretty, and led them back to the land of Nephi where they came to a bondage agreement.

One of the men that had been taken captive was Limhi, he is the son of Noah.  Limhi was not thrilled with the choices his dad had made, but he still didn’t want his dad to die out there in the wilderness.  Gideon then stepped in and sent out a search party for Noah and all of the men that didn’t stay with their families, this includes the wicked priests.  Gideon’s search party located all of the men, less the priests and king Noah.  These men then told Gideon that they had slayed Noah and set him on fire (prophecy fulfilled) and that the priests fled further into the wilderness away from them.  All of these men then came back to the city of Nephi with Gideon and were reunited with their families.

The people then asked Limhi to be their ruler and Limhi entered into a formal agreement with the Lamanites for the half of EVERYTHING bondage for life rule.  And then they had peace in the land for two years.

And there is more to come….

I leave this great story with you in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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