Wednesday, May 06, 2015
"Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men."(Book of Mormon, Alma 48:17)
Many wonder why the prophet Mormon in the Book of Mormon devoted so much time writing about war between the Nephites and Lamanites. Captain Moroni was the chief general of all the Nephite Armies and a key figure. What are we to learn from the "war chapters"? Mormon says that Moroni was a man with perfect understanding. How is Captain Moroni's perfect understanding manifest in his execution of war?
Captain Moroni was such a great leader not just because he was such a great military strategist, but also because he understood the power of covenant and used the power of covenant and commitment to bind Satan and defeat his enemies. While Satan is the great liar and deciever, the power and glory of God is manifest in His power to always keep His word.
Captain Moroni was able to rally and inspire the Nephites to the cause of freedom by helping them remember their covenants and commitments to their God, country, and family. Captain Moroni wrote these commitments on his coat and created a banner called "the Title of Liberty". The Title of Liberty became a great Nephite symbol ever after..
"And it came to pass that he rent his coat; and he took a piece thereof, and wrote upon it—In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children—and he fastened it upon the end of a pole." (Book of Mormon, Alma 46:12)
Captain Moroni used the power of covenant not only to strengthen the righteous but also to win over his enemies. Defeated Lamanites were always allowed to go free if they would commit to never returning to war against them. Many Lamanites accepted commitment instead of death. However, other Lamanites perished because they knew they and their children would break their word. These commitments freed the Nephites from having to feed and guard Lamanite prisoners.
Forgetting the warnings and lessons of the Book of Mormon is what brought condemnation upon the Early Church in Missouri. The Missouri Saints according to Sec 101 of the Doctrine and Covenants failed to build the temple, and therefore were unable to recognize the church, at a low level, being infilltrated by the "enemy". Had the early Saints been more faithful and harkened to the lessons and warnings of the Book of Mormon about Conspiracy (See Helaman 6), and built the temple, they would have "seen the enemy afar off".