Alma 8-12

Why does the Book of Mormon have its own unique monetary system? Is Jesus Christ also the Eternal Father? Does the Book of Mormon confirm there is only one God? Was the Fall of Adam a blessing? The answer to these questions and more in today’s lesson review.

Monetary Systems in the Book of Mormon

Was the Fall of Adam a blessing?

Does the Book of Mormon confirm there is only one God?

For the sake of time, I will not be citing all the parallel phrases and words from the New Testament that are in the Book of Mormon text.  While it can be argued that some of the parallels are coincidental, most are so strong that it is impossible to not conclude that their, true source is from the King James Bible. For a complete transcript of this lesson, please click on the link in the description below.

Alma 8:1-2 After preaching in the land of Gideon, Alma returned to his house in Zarahemla to rest up. This was the nineth year of the reign of the judges.

Alma 8:3 In the tenth year, Alma decided to preach in the land of Melek, across the Sidon river on the edge of the wilderness.

Alma 8:4-5 People came from far away to hear him preach and they were baptized.

Alma 8:6-7 Finishing up in Melek, Alma travels north to the city of Ammonihah.

Alma 8:8 He immediately begins to preach the word of God to them. ^The words “do not believe in” are in Romans 15:31.

Alma 8:9 Unfortunately for Alma, Satan had already beat him there. The people had hard hearts and wouldn’t listen to Alma’s teachings.

Alma 8:10 “Nevertheless Alma labored much in the spirit, wrestling with God in might prayer, that he would pour out his Spirit upon the people who were in the city; that he would also grant that he might baptize them unto repentance.” 

Alma 8:11 “Nevertheless, they hardened their hearts, saying unto him: Behold we know that thou art Alma; and we know that thou art high priest over the church which thou hast established in many parts of the land, according to your tradition; and we are not of thy church, and we do not believe in such foolish traditions.”  They recognize Alma is president of the church, but they are not interested in his message. 

Alma 8:12 They knew Alma was not the chief judge anymore, so he had no power over them in any way.

Alma 8:13 They rejected all his words, ridiculed him, and spit upon him. So, he decided to travel north and tried his luck in the city of Aaron.

Alma 8:14 On his way and feeling like a failure as a missionary, he was stopped by an angel of the Lord. ^The phrase “through much tribulation” is in Acts 14:22.

Alma 8:15 The angel said, “Blessed art thou, Alma; therefore, lift up thy head and rejoice, for thou hast great cause to rejoice; for thou hast been faithful in keeping the commandments of God from the time which thou receivedst thy first message from him.  Behold I am he that delivered it unto you.”  This was the very same angel who two decades earlier appeared to Alma and the sons of Mosiah back in Mosiah 27:11, when they were rebellious and seeking to destroy the Church. This time the angel commends Alma for keeping the commandments.  The words “Behold, I am he” are in Acts 10:21.

Alma 8:16 Alma was probably surprised to hear from the angel that he should return to the city of Ammonihah.  This time he was to tell the people to repent or God will destroy them. God likes to use threats to get people to repent. The phrase “except they repent” is in Revelation 2:22.

Alma 8:17 The angel tells Alma that these wicked people are studying ways at that very moment to destroy the freedoms of Alma’s people. They are studying ways to get Alma’s people to weaken their own government’s laws which were based upon the laws of God. Ammonihah was inhabited almost exclusively by the followers of Nehor. 

Alma 8:18 Alma immediately returns to the city of Ammonihah. 

Alma 8:19 “And as he entered the city he was an hungred, and he said to a man: Will ye give to an humble servant of God something to eat?”

Alma 8:20 “And the man said unto him: I am a Nephite, and I know that thou art a holy prophet of God, for thou are the man whom an angel said in a vision: Thou shalt receive.  Therefore, go with me into my house and I will impart unto thee of my food; and I know that thou wilt be a blessing unto me and my house.”  Evidently, Amulek was a church member who had gone inactive.

Alma 8:21 “And it came to pass that the man received him into his house; and the man was called Amulek; and he brought forth bread and meat and set before Alma.” 

Alma 8:23-26 After dinner, Alma introduces himself to Amulek and tells him the reason why he returned to Ammonihah. 

Alma 8:24 The words “to preach the word” are also in Acts 16:6.

Alma 8:27 Alma stayed many days with Amulek before he began preaching. During this time, Alma taught and prepped Amulek to be his missionary companion. 

Alma 8:28 The people in Ammonihah were getting more wicked by the day.

Alma 8:29 “And the word came to Alma, saying: Go; and also say unto my servant Amulek, go forth and prophesy unto this people, saying – Repent ye, for thus saith the Lord, except ye repent I will visit this people in mine anger; yea, I will not turn my fierce anger away.”  So, Alma recruited Amulek to help him preach to the people. The phrase “saying – Repent ye, for” is also in Matthew 3:2.

Alma 8:30 “And Alma went forth, and also Amulek, among the people, to declare the words of God unto them; and they were filled with the Holy Ghost.”  The phrase “filled with the Holy Ghost” is also in Acts 2:4.

Alma 8:31 Now, Mormon will tell us why the Lord gave them special power for self-protection that makes them invincible.  “And they had power given unto them, insomuch that they could not be confined in dungeons; neither was it possible that any man could slay them; nevertheless they did not exercise their power until they were bound in bands and cast into prison.  Now, this was done that the Lord might show forth his power in them.” 

Alma 8:32 Alma and Amulek began to preach and prophesy to the people.

Alma 9 Chapters 9 through 14 contain direct quotes from Alma and Amulek as they preach to the people of Ammonihah. 

Alma 9:1-4 As Alma and Amulek began preaching the people contended with them. They didn’t believe that God would destroy their great city in one day.  By the way this will happen in Alma 16:9-10.

Alma 9:3 The words “they understood not the” are in Luke 2:50.

Alma 9:5 “Now they knew not that God could do such marvelous works, for they were a hard-hearted and a stiff-necked people.”

Alma 9:7-8 “And they stood forth to lay their hands on me; but behold, they did not.  And I stood with boldness to declare unto them, yea, I did boldly testify unto them saying:” The words “lay their hands on” are in Luke 21:12 and, “with boldness” are in Acts 4:31.

Alma 9:8 “Behold, O ye wicked and perverse generation, how have ye forgotten the tradition of your fathers; yea, how soon ye have forgotten the commandments of God.”  Alma is going to tell them how important it is to remember past blessings from God. He’s going to warn them of the dangers of forgetting such blessings.  The words “and perverse generation” are also in Matthew 17:17.

Alma 9:9-11 He reminds them that God brought Lehi out of Jerusalem. He reminds them how many times God helped them in battle against their enemies. 

Alma 9:9 The phrase “Do ye not remember” is in Mark 8:18.

Alma 9:12 “Behold, now I say unto you that he commandeth you to repent; and except ye repent, ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God.  But behold, this is not all – he has commanded you to repent, or he will utterly destroy you from off the face of the earth; ye, he will visit you in his anger, and in his fierce anger he will not turn away.”  Alma’s God seems a little over the top with his threats. How sincere can a person be about repenting for the right reasons, if they have destruction hanging over their heads? The phrase “inherit the kingdom of God” is also in 1 Corinthians 6:9. 

Alma 9:13 Once again, Alma is going to teach “prosperity doctrine.”  “Behold, do ye not remember the words which he spake unto Lehi, saying that: Inasmuch as ye shall keep the commandments, ye shall prosper in the land?  And again it is said that: Inasmuch as ye will not keep my commandments ye shall be cut off from the presence of the Lord.”  This statement was repeated over and over in the Book of Mormon to remind the Nephites of their responsibilities as inhabitants of the promised land.  The phrase “the words which he spake” is also in Acts 20:38.

Alma 9:14 Alma uses the Lamanites as an example of how that works. They are proof because they have lost the Spirit of the Lord.

Alma 9:15 “Nevertheless I say unto you, that it shall be more tolerable for them in the day of judgement than for you, if ye remain in your sins, yea, and even more tolerable for them in this life than for you, except ye repent.”  The people of Ammonihah are more accountable than the Lamanites because they have known the truth and rebelled against it. Whereas, the Lamanites don’t know any better.  The words “more tolerable for” and, “in the day of judgment” are in Matthew 10:15.

Alma 9:16-17 Because of the promises that have been extended to the Lamanites, God will prolong their existence in the land. And, at some period in the future they will accept the truth and be saved.

Alma 9:16 The words “of the tradition of” are in Galatians 1:14.

Alma 9:18 Alma warns them if they do not repent, God will allow the Lamanites to destroy them. 

Alma 9:19-21 He tells them it would be better for them as Nephites to be killed after knowing the truth and being highly favored of the Lord – after having been visited by the Spirit of the Lord and having spiritual gifts –  than to revert back to their sinful ways.

Alma 9:19 The words “will not suffer you” are in 1 Corinthians 10:13 and, “if it were possible” are also in Acts 27:39.

Alma 9:20 The phrase “which is to come” is in Ephesians 1:21.

Alma 9:21 The phrase “the spirit of prophecy” is in Revelation 19:10 and, “speaking with tongues” is in 1 Corinthians 14:6 and, “the gift of the Holy Ghost” is also in Acts 2:38.

Alma 9:22 He goes on to remind them of past blessing of the Lord to their ancestors.  The words “waxed strong in” are also in Luke 2:40.

Alma 9:23 “And now behold I say unto you, that if this people, who have received so many blessings from the hand of the Lord, should transgress contrary to the light and knowledge which they do have, I say unto you that if this be the case, that if they should fall into transgression, it would be far more tolerable for the Lamanites than for them.”

Alma 9:24-25 The Lamanites will be reclaimed, but because you have the truth and know better – if you don’t repent, you will be destroyed by the Lord.

Alma 9:25 The words “sent his angel to” are also in Revelation 22:6 and, “saying: Repent ye, for the kingdom of heaven is” are the same in Matthew 3:2.

Alma 9:26 Next, Alma gives a brief description of the Savior and His mission. “And not many days hence the Son of God shall come in his glory; and his glory shall be the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace, equity, and truth, full of patience, mercy, and long-suffering, quick to hear the cries of his people and to answer their prayers.”  The phrase “not many days” is in Luke 15:13 and, “come in his glory” is the same in Matthew 25:31.

Alma 9:27 “And behold, he cometh to redeem those who will be baptized unto repentance, through faith on his name.”  Mormonism teaches that baptism is required for salvation.  The words “through faith” are in Acts 3:16.

Alma 9:28 “Therefore, prepare ye the way of the Lord, for the time is at hand that all men shall reap a reward of their works, according to that which they have been – if they have been righteous they reap the salvation of their souls, according to the power and deliverance of Jesus Christ; and if they have been evil they shall reap the damnation of their souls, according to the power and captivation of the devil.”  In Mormonism, this is a difference between eternal progression in the celestial kingdom, in which people can become exalted and become gods (see D&C 131:1-4).  Or, having eternal limits placed on their ability to progress at all (see D&C 76:112).   The words “of their souls” are in 1 Peter 4:19 and, “the damnation of” are in Matthew 23:33.

Alma 9:29-30 Alma wants them to realize they are a lost and fallen people.

Alma 9:30 The phrase “meet for repentance” is also in Acts 26:20.

Alma 9:31-32 Because of the accusations Alma brought against the people of Ammonihah, they wanted to throw Alma into prison.

Alma 9:32 In the 1830 edition it read, “they was angry with me.” Later editions changed it to read, “they were angry with me.”   

Alma 9:33 But, the Lord wouldn’t allow Alma to be put in prison.

Alma 9:34 “And it came to pass that Amulek went and stood forth, and began to preach unto them also.  And now the words of Amulek are not all written, nevertheless a part of his words are written in this book.” 

Alma 10:2 “I am Amulek; I am the son of Giddonah, who was the son of Ishmael, who was a descendent of Aminadi; and it was the same Aminadi who interpreted the writing which was upon the wall of the temple, which was written by the finger of God.”  This writing on the wall of a temple sounds similar, to an instance in Daniel 5:5-28.  But here there is nothing more said about it.  Perhaps an account of this incident was recorded on the large plates of Nephi, but Mormon decided not include it in his abridgment.

Alma 10:3 Amulek goes on about his pedigree.  “And Abinadi was a descendant of Nephi, who was the son of Lehi, who came out of the land of Jerusalem, who was a descendent of Manasseh, who was the son of Joseph who was sold into Egypt by the hands of his brethren.”  Earlier it was mentioned that Lehi was a descendant of Joseph (see 1 Nephi 5:4) but this is the first time it was mentioned that Lehi was a descendant of Joseph’s eldest son, Manasseh.   

Alma 10:4 Amulek goes on by telling his audience that he is well-known, comes from a large family, and has a lot of money.  The words “reputation among all” are in Acts 5:34.

Alma 10:5-6 And, until a few days ago, he was just like the rest of the people Ammonihah.  He was living beneath his spiritual capabilities.

Alma 10:7-8 He recounts the story of the angel who told him to take in the prophet Alma off the street and feed him. 

Alma 10:7 The phrase “return to thine own house” is also in Luke 8:39. In the 1830 edition page 249, it read “As I was a journeying.” In later editions the word ahas been deleted.  

Alma 10:8 In the 1830 edition page 249, it read “And as I was a going thither.”  Again, in later editions the word ahas been deleted.

Alma 10:9-10 Amulek testifies that what Alma has taught the people of Ammonihah is true.  Angel’s ministered to him daily about Alma’s words.

Acts 10:9 The phrase “And the angel said unto me” is also in Revelation 17:7.

Alma 10:11 In fact all, of Amulek’s family and relatives have witnessed Alma’s prophetic calling firsthand.  The phrase “the words which he spake” is also in Acts 20:38.

Alma 10:12 “And now, when Amulek had spoken these words the people began to be astonished, seeing there was more than one witness, who testified of the things whereof they were accused, and also of the things which were to come, according to the spirit of prophecy which was in them.”

Alma 10:13-15 Nevertheless, there were some skillful lawyers who wanted to use their cunning ways to catch Alma and Amulek in their words.  They were hoping to find witness against them so they would be judged according to their law with a crime and thrown into prison.  

Alma 10:13 The phrase “that they might be judged according to” is also in 1 Peter 4:6.

Alma 10:16 “And it came to pass that they began to question Amulek, that thereby they might make him cross his words, or contradict the words which he should speak.”  The words “began to question” are also in Mark 8:11.

Alma 10:17 “Now they knew not that Amulek could know of their designs.  But it came to pass as they began to question him, he perceived their thoughts, and he said unto them: O ye wicked and perverse generation, ye lawyers and hypocrites, for ye are laying the foundations of the devil; for ye are laying traps and snares to catch the holy ones of God.”  The words “he perceived their” are in Luke 20:23.

Alma 10:18 “Ye are laying the plans to pervert the ways of the righteous, and to bring down the wrath of God upon your heads, even to the utter destruction of this people.” The words “the wrath of God upon” are the same in Ephesians 5:6.

Alma 10:19 Amulek reminds them that when Mosiah gave up the kingdom – the people were to be governed by their own voices.  And if ever the majority should choose wickedness, they would be ripe for destruction.

Alma 10:20-21  They have been given a chance to repent, and now the justice of God is about to come down on them.

Alma 10:20 The phrase “for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” is in Matthew 3:2.

Alma 10:22 “Yea, and I say unto you that if it were not for the prayers of the righteous, who are now in the land that ye would even now be visited with utter destruction; yet it would not be by flood, as were the people in the days of Noah, but it would be by famine, and by pestilence, and the sword.”

Alma 10:23 “But its by the prayers of the righteous that ye are spared; now therefore, if ye will cast out the righteous from among you then will not the Lord stay his hand; but in his fierce anger he will come out against you; then ye shall be smitten by famine, and by pestilence, and by the sword; and the time is soon at hand except ye repent.”  It’s still not too late to repent.  The words “except ye repent” are in Luke 13:3.

Alma 10:24 This really angered the people and their wise lawyers. 

Alma 10:25 “But Amulek stretched forth his hand, and cried the mightier unto them saying: O ye wicked and perverse generation, why hath Satan got such great hold upon your hearts?  Why will ye yield yourselves unto him that he may have power over you, to blind your eyes, that ye will not understand the words which are spoken, according to their truth?”  Amulek’s words are being misconstrued.

Alma 10:26 “For behold, have I testified against your law?  Ye do not understand; ye say that I have spoken against your law; but I have not, but I have spoken in favor of your law.”  In other words, their laws were good.  But they were being corrupted by the lawyers. 

Alma 10:27 In the 1830 edition page 251, it read “the destruction of this people is a beginning to be laid.” In later editions the word ahas been deleted.

Alma 10:28 The people cried out against Amulek calling him a servant of the devil for speaking against their laws.  The words “child of the devil” are in Acts 13:10.

Alma 10:29-30 Their lawyers stirred up the people against Amulek.

Alma 10:31 We are now going to be introduced to a very skilled and wicked lawyer. “And there was one among them whose name was Zeezrom.  Now he was the foremost to accuse Amulek and Alma, he being one of the most expert among them, having much business to do among the people.”  He was a highly successful lawyer in Ammonihah. 

Alma 10:32 “Now the object of these lawyers was to get gain; and they got gain according to their employ.”  Their real motivaton was to get rich rather than to uphold the integrity of the law.  In the 1830 edition page 251 it read “Now the object of these Lawyers were to get gain.” In later editions, werewas changed to was.”

Alma 11:1-2 Mormon explains that the law of Mosiah established a basic legal system to deal with disputes through trials.  Pretty basic stuff.

Alma 11:2 The words “a thief and a robber” are also in John 10:1.

Alma 11:3 “And the judge received for his wages according to his time – a senine of gold for a day, or a senum of silver, which is equal to a senine of gold;  and this is according to the law which is given.” 

Alma 11:4 “Now these are the names of the different pieces of their gold, and of their silver, according to their value.  And the names are given by the Nephites, for they did not reckon after the manner of the Jews who were at Jerusalem; neither did they measure after the manner of the Jews but they altered  their reckoning and their measure, according to the minds and the circumstances of the people, in every generation, until the reign of the Judges, they having been established by king Mosiah.”   The Nephites had their own unique monetary and weights and measures system separate from that of the Jews.  This was to establish equivalencies between amounts of silver, gold, and grains. If the Nephites were actually Jews why wouldn’t they continue their old world, monetary system with Jewish designations?  If you moved to an uninhabited country and needed some form of currency, would you not use something familiar? Why would you invent a whole new system of names when you already possess them? Smith clearly had no idea about any monetary system that would have been used in Jerusalem when Lehi left there in 600 BC. With no knowledge of Judean currency, he decided to invent his own complex monetary system instead. The phrase “the manner of the Jews” is also in John 19:40.

Alma 11:5 “Now the reckoning is thus…”

Alma 11:6-19 And, then Mormon goes into detail about how the monetary system works. We won’t sort through it all here.  Nobody really knows how much their coins were worth. Mormon’s point was that the judges were being paid quite well for their day of work.  Interestingly, none of these ancient coins have ever been discovered in North, Central, or South America. The coin “amnor” is also the name of a Nephite spy we read about in Alma 2:22. The Nephite coin “shiblon” was also a name of the second son of Alma. The coin “shum” was the name of a people in Moses 7:5. Seems the writer of the Book of Mormon was running out of contrived names.     

Alma 11:7 The words “measure of barley” is used in this verse. However, barley did not exist in the Americas before European influence.  

Alma 11:20 The lawyers and judges would stir up trouble in society to generate more cases and lawsuits to gain wealth for themselves.  In the 1830 edition page 252, it read “Now it was for the sole purpose for to get gain.” In later editions the second forwas deleted.

Alma 11:21 “And this Zeezrom began to question Amulek, saying: Will ye answer me a few questions which I shall ask you?  Now Zeezrom was a man who was expert in the devices of the devil, that he might destroy that which was good; therefore, he said unto Amulek: Will ye answer the questions which I shall put unto you?”  The words “began to question” are in Mark 8:11.

Alma 11:22 “And Amulek said unto him: Yea, if it be according to the Spirit of the Lord, which is in me; for I shall say nothing which is contrary to the Spirit of the Lord.  And Zeezrom said unto him: Behold, here are six onties of silver, and all these will I give thee if thou wilt deny the existence of a Supreme Being.”  He is testing Amulek to see if he will compromise his integrity for a substantial bribe.

Alma 11:23-25 Amulek comes down on Zeezrom – blaming him for trying to induce Amulek to deny God for filthy lucre.  How dare he! 

Alma 11:23 The phrase “child of hell” is in Matthew 23:15.

Alma 11:24 “Believest thou that there is no God?  I say unto you, Nay, thou knowest that there is a God, but thou lovest that lucre more than him.” Amulek has discerned that Zeezrom secretly believes in God, but loved what the world had to offer more.

Alma 11:26 Suddenly the conversation gets serious. Listen to this exchange “And Zeezrom said unto him: Thou sayest there is a true and living God?”

Alma 11:27 “And Amulek said: Yea, there is a true and living God.”

Alma 11:28 “Now Zeezrom said: Is there more than one God?”

Alma 11:29 “And he answered, No.”

Alma 11:30 “Now Zeezrom said unto him again: How knowest thou these things?”

Alma 11:31 “And he said: An angel hath made them known unto me.”  The words “An angel hath” are in Acts 23:9.  If they truly had the brass plates they would have known God said in Isaiah 43:10 “Ye are my witnesses, saith the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.” And, Isaiah 44:6, 8 “Thus saith the Lord the King of Israel, and his redeemer the Lord of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God.  Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? ye are even my witnesses.  Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any.” 

Alma 11:32 “And Zeezrom said again: Who is he that shall come?  Is it the Son of God?”

Alma 11:33 “And he said unto him, Yea.”

Alma 11:34 “And Zeerom said again: Shall he save his people in their sins?  And Amulek answered and said unto him: I say unto you he shall not, for it is impossible for him to deny his word.”  The phrase “I say unto you he shall not” is in Mark 9:41 and “for it is impossible” is in Hebrews 6:4.

Alma 11:35 “Now Zeezrom said unto the people: See that ye remember these things; for he said there is but one God; yet he saith that the Son of God shall come, but he shall not save his people – as though he had authority to command God.”  The phrase “there is but one God” is in 1 Corinthians 8:6 and, “that the Son of God” is in 1 John 5:20.

Alma 11:36 “Now Amulek saith again unto him: Behold thou hast lied, for thou sayest that I spake as though I had authority to command God because I said he shall not save his people in their sins.”  The words “thou sayest that I” are in John 18:37.

Alma 11:37 “And I say unto you again that he cannot save them in their sins; for I cannot deny his word, and he hath said that no unclean thing can inherit the kingdom of heaven; therefore, how can ye be saved, except ye inherit the kingdom of heaven?  Therefore, ye cannot be saved in your sins.”  In other words, we can only be saved from our sins.  The phrase “ye cannot be saved” is in Acts 27:31.

Alma 11:38 This is a very interesting question “Now Zeezrom saith again unto him: Is the Son of God the very Eternal Father?”  The words “Is the Son of God” are in 1 John 5:5.

Alma 11:39 We would expect the answer to be, No. The Son is separate from the Father.  Instead, here is how Amulek responded.  “And Amulek said unto him: Yea, he is the very Eternal Father of heaven and earth, and all things which in them are; he is the beginning and the end, the first and the last;”  This is saying that Jesus is both “the Son of God” and “the very Eternal Father.”  Latter-day Saints would explain this as meaning the Son of God is the Creator.  He is in, charge of our salvation from the beginning in the premortal existence, until the final Judgment Day.  The phrase “the beginning and the end, the first and the last” is in Revelation 22:13. Joseph Smith’s monotheism once again shines through.  This teaching was first introduced to us in the Book of Mormon on the Title Page which still reads: “And also to the convincing of the Jew and Gentile that JESUS is the CHRIST, the ETERNAL GOD, manifesting himself unto all nations.”  Mosiah 16:15 “Teach them that redemption cometh through Christ the Lord, who is the very Eternal Father. Amen.”  2 Nephi 26:12 “And as I spake concerning the convincing of the Jews, Jesus is the very Christ, it must needs be that the Gentiles be convinced also Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God.”  The Testimony of the Three Witnesses still includes: “And the honor be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost, which is one God. Amen.”

These are not phrases that would ever be used by anyone not believing in a monotheistic God.  Or, in the Trinity for that matter.  To be excused as a description of three separate beings, who are one in purpose, it would need to read in the plural, not singular such as, (…which “are” rather than “is” one God).  Along with these Alma verses, other Book of Mormon passages that teach monotheism are 2 Nephi 11:7; 2 Nephi 31:21; Mosiah 15:1-5; 3 Nephi 11:27, 36; Mormon 7:7; Ether 3:14-15.  Latter-day Saints want to interpret these passages as meaning “one in purpose” because they are taught that God and Jesus are separate beings with bodies according to modern Mormon theology. They have no idea that when Smith wrote the Book of Mormon, he still believed they were indeed one and the same being, just as every reference states.  Latter-day Saints are persuaded differently, because of Joseph’s First Vision claim.  However, the final version of Smith’s first vision was not penned until 1838, some eighteen years after that supposed event and eight years after the Book of Mormon was published. Any rational thinker would recognize how confusing and contradictory all of this is. 

Alma 11:40 “And he shall come into the world to redeem his people; and he shall take upon him the transgressions of those who believe on his name; and these are they that shall have eternal life, and salvation cometh to none else.”  To the LDS, this means exaltation.  Christ suffered for all mankind, but His sacrifice is effective only to those who repent.  The words “come into the world” are in John 16:28. Here the Book of Mormon clearly states that those who “believe on His name…shall have eternal life” when in today’s Mormonism it takes far more than just belief.  It is not what the Church now teaches, but it is what the Book of Mormon declares. We must always remember that God dictated this to Smith in his hat, so it should be both word perfect and doctrinally accurate.  We are finding that it is neither. 

Alma 11:41-42 Amulek teaches that every person will rise from the temporal death and be judged. 

Alma 11:41 The phrase “shall rise from the dead” is in Mark 12:25 and, “stand before God” is also in Revelation 20:12 and, “according to their works” is the same in Revelation 20:13.

Alma 11:43 “The spirit and the body shall be reunited again in its perfect form; both limb and joint shall be restored to its proper frame, even as we now are at this time; and we shall be brought to stand before God, knowing even as we know now, and have a bright recollection of all our guilt.”

Alma 11:44 “Now, this restoration shall come to all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, both the wicked and the righteous; and even there shall not so much as a hair of their heads be lost; but everything shall be restored to it perfect frame, as it is now, or in the body, and shall be brought and be arraigned before the bar of Christ the Son, and God the Father, and the Holy Spirit, which is one Eternal God, to be judged according to their works, whether they be good or whether they be evil.” There is that monotheistic God, again.  Amulek is promising everyone perfect resurrected bodies.  How old will we be, 20? 25? 30?  Will we be one-size-fits-all?  At least there’s hope for bald guys.  The words “as it is now” are in Ephesians 3:5 and, “and God the Father” are in Galatians 1:1. For a strong biblical argument that we won’t have the exact same physical identity in the resurrection read Danny Larsen – Thoughts on Resurrection (Links are in the description below).

The title “Christ” is from the Greek “Khristos,” which is the translation of the Hebrew word “Messias.”  Christ means “anointed one.”  Christ never appeared in the Hebrew Old Testament, and we only see Messias used twice in the Greek New Testament.  Messiah is only mentioned twice in the entire Old Testament.  Yet, it is used 26 times in the Book of Mormon.  Dating the Book of Mormon as a modern work – “Christ” is used 186 times in the Old Testament era of the Book of Mormon.  Furthermore, the concept of “God the Father” is not emphasized in the Old Testament until the arrival of Jesus Christ, when He declared “Abba Father” in Mark 14:36.  Thus the title “God the Father” is unique to the Greek New Testament and not found in the Hebrew Old Testament.  The title is used 7 times in the Old Testament era of the Book of Mormon.

Alma 11:45 “Now, behold, I have spoken unto you concerning the death of the mortal body, and also concerning the resurrection of the mortal body.  I say unto you that this mortal body is raised to an immortal body, that is from death, even from the first death unto life, that they can die no more; their spirits uniting with their bodies, never to be divided; thus the whole becoming spiritual and temporal, that they can no more see corruption.”  Once, resurrected a person cannot grow old and die again.  The phrase “death unto life” is in 1 John 3:14.  These verses about the resurrection are obviously drawing on the Paul’s teachings in 1 Corinthians 15

Alma 11:46 “Now, when Amulek had finished these words the people began again to be astonished, and also Zeezrom began to tremble.  And thus ended the words of Amulek, or this is all that I have written.”  So, Almulek’s teaching has definitely had an impact on the people, especially Zeezrom who is now shaking in his sandals. 

Alma 12:1-2 Now it was Alma’s turn to build upon the teachings of Amulek.  A large crowd had gathered and were about to hear what Alma had to say to Zeezrom.

Alma 12:1 The phrase “he opened his mouth and” is also in Matthew 5:2.

Alma 12:2 The words “spake on this wise” are also in Acts 7:6.

Alma 12:3-5 Alma says he can read Zeezrom’s thoughts.  He knows Zeezrom was lying both to men and to God.  He was an agent of the devil.

Alma 12:3 This verse is similar, to Acts 5:3-4 where Ananias and Sapphira was rebuked by Peter. The phrase “unto us by his Spirit” is also in 1 Corinthians 2:10. 

Alma 12:4 The words “of the devil; for” are in Acts 10:38.

Alma 12:5 The words “power in thee” are in Romans 9:17.

Alma 12:6 “And behold I say unto you all that this was a snare of the adversary, which he has laid to catch this people, that he might bring you into subjection unto him, that he might encircle you about with his chains, that he might chain you down to everlasting destruction, according to the power of his captivity.”  The phrase “everlasting destruction” is in 2 Thessalonians 1:9.

Alma 12:7 Hearing this, Zeezrom really began to tremble – a universal sign of guilt in the Book of Mormon.  He was almost convinced of the power of God and that Alma and Amulek knew his thoughts and intents of his heart, by the spirit of prophecy. The phrase “of the power of God” is in Luke 22:69 and, “power was given unto them” is also in Revelation 6:8.

Alma 12:8  “And Zeezrom began to inquire of them diligently, that he might know more concerning the kingdom of God.  And he said unto Alma: What does this mean which Amulek hath spoken concerning the resurrection of the dead, that all shall rise from the dead, both the just and the unjust, and are brought to stand before God to be judged according to their works?”  The phrase “the resurrection of the dead” is in Matthew 22:31 and, “shall rise from the dead” is in Mark 12:25.  The “kingdom of God” is a phrase unique to New Testament Christianity, and is not found in the Old Testament.  However, it is used 31 times in the Old Testament era of the Book of Mormon.

Alma 12:9 “And now Alma began to expound these things unto him, saying: It is given unto many to know the mysteries of God; nevertheless they are laid under a strict command that they shall not impart only according to the portion of his word which he doth grant unto the children of men, according to the heed and diligence which they give unto him.”  In other words, God reveals His gospel to them in accordance to what they are willing to live.  The word “mysteries” do not necessarily mean strange or hidden doctrines.  Unless, we are talking about “sacred” or “secret” covenants and ordinances that are not taught and revealed to the general public, let alone many church members. The phrase “mysteries of God” is used by the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 4:1 and in Colossians 2:2 and, John uses it in Revelation 10:7.  No other New or Old Testament books use this phrase.  However, the Book of Mormon uses this phrase 8 times as early as 600 B.C. 

Alma 12:10 Alma is teaching, the more open the heart is to the gospel, the more they will be taught, until they will know the mysteries of God. 

Alma 12:11 For those who are hard-hearted, it is possible over time to know nothing concerning the gospel. The words “are taken captive by” are in 2 Timothy 2:26.

Alma 12:13 If we reject the gospel by not living it, then we will be condemned or damned.

Alma 12:14 “For our words will condemn us, yea, all our works will condemn us; we shall not be found spotless; and our thoughts will also condemn us; and in this awful state we shall not dare to look up to our God; and we would fain be glad if we could command the rocks and the mountains to fall upon us to hide us from his presence.”  The words “we shall not be found” are in 2 Corinthians 5:3.

Alma 12:15 Alma reminds Zeezrom that there is no way to avoid standing before Christ on Judgment Day.  The phrase “meet for repentance” is also in Acts 26:20.

Alma 12:16 Next, Alma defines what is meant by the terms “second death” and “spiritual death.”  “And now behold, I say unto you then cometh death, even a second death which is a spiritual death; then is a time that whosoever dieth in his sins, as to a temporal death, shall also die a spiritual death; yea, he shall die as to things pertaining unto righteousness.” He will forfeit the reward of exaltation in the celestial kingdom. 

Alma 12:17 Here’s their punishment “Then is the time when their torments shall be as a lake of fire and brimstone, whose flame ascendeth up forever and ever; and then is the time that they shall be chained down to an everlasting destruction, according to the power and captivity of Satan, he having subjected them according to his will.”  Alma is giving a description of Hell.

Alma 12:18 They will be as if there had been no Atonement for sin.  They will live forever as resurrected beings, but not able to be in the presence of God.  These sons of perdition will be subject to Satan’s power forever. (See Alma 34:35)   

Alma 12:19 Alma was done speaking and the people were even more astonished.

Alma 12:20 However, there was still one doubter among them.  “But there was one Antionah, who was a chief ruler among them, came forth and said unto him: What is this that thou hast said, that man should rise from the dead and be changed from this mortal to an immortal state that the soul can never die?”  The word “soul” here means the resurrected person with spirit and body (see D&C 88:15)The words “never die” are in John 11:26. Antionah thought that the only way man would have been able to live forever was to partake of the fruit of the tree of life.  Alma here explains that God had outlined another way whereby man could live forever. This involved mortality, dying, and being resurrected.   

Alma 12:21 Antionah is trying to set a trap for Alma, by using scripture. “What does the scripture mean, which saith that God placed cherubim and a flaming sword on the east of the garden of Eden, lest our first parents should enter and partake of the fruit of the tree of life, and live forever?  And thus we see that there was no possible chance that they should live forever.” In other words, God made sure there was no possible chance for them to live forever.  In the 1830 edition “cherubims” is the incorrect plural of cherub, so it was changed to “cherubim.”

Alma 12:22 “Now Alma said unto him: This is the thing which I was about to explain.  Now we see that Adam did fall by the partaking of the forbidden fruit, according to the word of God; and thus we see, that by his fall, all mankind became a lost and fallen people.”

Alma 12:23 “And now behold, I say unto you that if it had been possible for Adam to have partaken of the fruit of the tree of life at that time, there would have been no death, and the word would have been void, making God a liar, for he said: If thou eat thou shalt surely die.” The phrase “that if it had been possible” is in Galatians 4:15.

Alma 12:24 Next, Alma will speak of physical death.  “And we see that death comes upon mankind, yea, the death which has been spoken of by Amulek, which is the temporal death; nevertheless there was a space granted unto man in which he might repent; therefore this life became a probationary state; a time to prepare to meet God; a time to prepare for that endless state which has been spoken of by us, which is after the resurrection of the dead.”  The words “repent; therefore” are in Acts 8:22. The term “resurrection” is from the Latin word “resurgere.”  While the notion of coming back from the dead is found in the Old Testament, the “resurrection” as a word is unique to the Greek New Testament. However, the Book of Mormon uses “resurrection” 53 times before the New Testament was ever written. 

Alma 12:25 “Now, if it had not been for the plan of redemption, which was laid from the foundation of the world, there could have been no resurrection of the dead; but there was a plan of redemption laid, which shall bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, of which has been spoken.”  This plan of redemption is referring to deliverance from permanent death.  However, Latter-day Saints will often call the plan of redemption – the plan of salvation.  And, because it was laid from the foundation of the world, they believe it was proposed in pre-mortality.  The phrase “from the foundation of the world” is also in Matthew 13:35 and, “no resurrection” is in 1 Corinthians 15:13.

Alma 12:26 Alma is now going to address the question, “What would have happened if Adam and Eve had eaten the fruit of the tree of life?”  “And now behold, if it were possible that our first parents could have gone forth and partaken of the tree of life they would have been forever miserable, having no preparatory state; and thus the plan of redemption would have been frustrated, and the word of God would have been void, taking none effect.” They needed time to exercise their agency, to learn and grow and make mistakes and repent – all in order to progress.  The phrase “and the word of God” is in Acts 6:7. Had they eaten of the tree of life immediately, they would have lived forever in their sins.

Alma 12:27 Speaking of Judgment Day, “But behold, it was not so; but it was appointed unto men that they must die; and after death,   …which is the end.” 

Alma 12:28-30 Next, Alma explains that in, order for this plan of redemption to work, humans had to be taught the message about God and use their agency to make decisions about living it.

Alma 12:28 The phrase “that it was expedient that” is also in John 18:14 and, “concerning the things whereof” is in 1 Corinthians 7:1.

Alma 12:31 Alma now explains the fall of Adam, and how partaking of the fruit was not mistake.  It was part of the plan to have Adam and Eve use their agency to make the right choice.  This is totally Mormonism – to believe that the fall was good.  That they fell forward so to speak, making it possible for all of God’s spirit children to come to earth and obtain mortal bodies and work out their salvation (see 2 Nephi 2:15-25)“Wherefore, he gave commandments unto men, they having first transgressed the first commandment as to things which were temporal, and becoming as Gods, knowing good from evil, placing themselves in a state to act, or being placed in a state to act according to their wills and pleasures, whether to do evil or to do good –“  In other words, the whole purpose in the Garden of Eden was to place Adam and Eve in a position where they had to use their agency.  They partook of the forbidden fruit and were thus unable to remain in the Garden of Eden.

Alma 12:32 “Therefore God gave them commandments, after having made known unto them the plan of redemption, that they should not do evil, the penalty thereof being a second death, which was an everlasting death as to things pertaining unto righteousness; for on such the plan of redemption could have no power, for the works of justice could not be destroyed, according to the supreme goodness of God.”  In other words, people have their agency to choose good or evil, and God cannot reward them for good if they choose evil.  Adam did know the plan when he sinned, therefore he was eligible for redemption. 

Alma 12:33 “But God did call on men, in the name of the Son, (this being the plan of redemption which was laid) saying: If ye will repent, and harden not your hearts, then will I have mercy upon you, through mine Only Begotten Son;”  The words “Only Begotten Son” are in John 1:18.

Alma 12:34 If they repent they will enter, into God’s rest.

Alma 12:35 And those who will not repent will not enter, into God’s rest.

Alma 12:36 Then Alma says a mouthful, “And now, my brethren, behold I say unto you, that if ye will harden your hearts ye shall not enter into the rest of the Lord; therefore your iniquity provoketh him that he sendeth down his wrath upon you as in the first provocation, yea, according to his word in the last provocation as well as the first, to the everlasting destruction of your souls; therefore according to his word, unto the last death, as well as the first.”  The “last provocation” is referring to the final judgment. The “everlasting destruction of your souls” means the “second death” or “spiritual death,” meaning living forever as resurrected beings, but cut off forever from the presence of God. The words “ye shall not enter into” are also in Matthew 18:3.  

Alma 12:37 Finally, Alma says, “And now, my brethren, seeing we know these things, and they are true, let us repent, and harden not our hearts, that we provoke not the Lord our God to pull down his wrath upon us in these his second commandments which he has given unto us; but let us enter into the rest of God, which is prepared according to his words.”  These “second commandments” are to repent and come unto the Father through Christ. The “first commandments” are mentioned in verse 31, referring to the two commandments given to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden – namely, have children (see Genesis 1:28) but don’t eat the forbidden fruit (see Genesis 2:17).

Joseph Fielding Smith explained that partaking of the forbidden fruit was not a sin: “I’m very, very grateful that in the Book of Mormon, and I think elsewhere in our scriptures, the fall of Adam has not been called a sin.  It was not a sin… What did Adam do? The very thing the Lord wanted him to do; and I hate to hear anybody call it a sin, for it wasn’t a sin.  Did Adam sin when he partook of the forbidden fruit? I say to you, no, he did not! Now, let me refer to what was written in the book of Moses in, regard to the command God gave to Adam (see Moses 3:16-17).  Now, this is the way I interpret that: The Lord said to Adam, here is the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  If you want to stay here, then you cannot eat of that fruit. If you want to stay here, then I forbid you to eat it.  But you may act for yourself, and you may eat of it if you want to.  And if you eat it, you will die.  I see a great difference between transgressing the law and committing a sin.” (Institute of Religion Doctrines of the Gospel Student Manual, 2000, pg. 20)

In other words, the LDS Church teaches that Adam’s sin or transgression was a necessary step in the plan of life and a great blessing to all of us. In Mormonism, what is down is up.  Adam fell up.  In contrast, the Bible teaches, and Christians believe that the disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve, was a great evil.  It was a fall downward.  When you read about those who are listed in the “Hall of Faith” recorded in Hebrews chapter 11, the list begins with Abel – not Adam.  In fact, Adam is specifically not mentioned because of his rebellion in the Garden.  Through their fall, sin entered the world, bringing all human beings under condemnation and death.  Thus, we are born with a sinful nature, and will be judged for the sins we commit as individuals.  God provided a way through His Son to atone for our sins.  And, when we place our faith on His Son for what He has accomplished for us – our sins are forgiven, and we are made clean and whole through the shed blood of Jesus Christ.

This concludes our study for today.  Please subscribe, so you won’t miss any of the future episodes.  You can catch us on YouTube, Apple podcast, Spotify and Google podcast.  Or, you can go to our website at Talking to Mormons.com – where you can download this script and learn much more.

 

God Bless!  And remember, Jesus is enough!

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