11 January 2014

Mosiah 24: Another daring escape

Amulon and King Laman (the King of the Lamanites) were getting quite cozy. Laman appointed Amulon and his brethren to be teachers over his people, in the land of Shemlon, Shilom and Amulon.
And it came to pass that Amulon did gain favor in the eyes of the king of the Lamanites; therefore, the king of the Lamanites granted unto him and his brethren that they should be appointed teachers over his people, yea, even over the people who were in the land of Shemlon, and in the land of Shilom, and in the land of Amulon. 24:1
The Lamanites started to become rich, through trade, innovation, and piracy. They didn't rob one another, though, only outsiders.
And thus the Lamanites began to increase in riches, and began to trade one with another and wax great, and began to be a cunning and a wise people, as to the wisdom of the world, yea, a very cunning people, delighting in all manner of wickedness and plunder, except it were among their own brethren. 24.7
It is unclear whether or not Amulon and his people robbed Alma and his people, but they certainly mistreated them. They put heavy burdens upon their backs and "put taskmasters above them".
For Amulon knew Alma, that he had been one of the king's priests, and that it was he that believed the words of Abinadi and was driven out before the king, and therefore he was wroth with him; for he was subject to king Laman, yet he exercised authority over them, and put tasks upon them, and put task-masters over them. 24.9
Alma and his people follow the typical playbook here, and they cry out to God. In fact, they cried so mightily that it began to annoy Amulon so much that he appointed guards to watch for the criers and execute them.
And it came to pass that so great were their afflictions that they began to cry mightily to God. 24.10
 And Amulon commanded them that they should stop their cries; and he put guards over them to watch them, that whosoever should be found calling upon God should be put to death. 24.11
So they stopped crying (out loud), and instead learned how to "pour out their hearts to God" silently. Or something. Anyways, God knew that they were suffering, so he started saying some encouraging words.
And Alma and his people did not raise their voices to the Lord their God, but did pour out their hearts to him; and he did know the thoughts of their hearts. 24.12 
And it came to pass that the voice of the Lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me 24.13a
Then God promised to deliver them out of bondage the very next day.
And it came to pass that so great was their faith and their patience that the voice of the Lord came unto them again, saying: Be of good comfort, for on the morrow I will deliver you out of bondage. 24.16
So Alma gathered his people, and their flocks, and their grain. But for some reason, it took way longer than usual to gather their flocks. I'm not sure why that is critical to the story, but whatever. (Alma: "Is it just me, or is this taking longer than usual, guys? Make sure to record that in the log book.")
Now it came to pass that Alma and his people in the night-time gathered their flocks together, and also of their grain; yea, even all the night-time were they gathering the flocks together. 24.18

When they finally gathered all of their flocks together, God caused a very profound sleep to come upon the taskmasters. Then Alma and his people escaped.
And in the morning the Lord caused a deep sleep to come upon the Lamanites, yea, and all their task-masters were in a profound sleep. 24.19 
And Alma and his people departed into the wilderness; and when they had traveled all day they pitched their tents in a valley, and they called the valley Alma, because he led their way in the wilderness. 24.20
They hung out in a nearby valley for a few days, thanking God, until God talks them to hurry the hell up and get out of there because the sleeping potion is about to wear off. Those things don't last forever, even when God makes them.
Yea, and in the valley of Alma they poured out their thanks to God because he had been merciful unto them, and eased their burdens, and had delivered them out of bondage; for they were in bondage, and none could deliver them except it were the Lord their God. 24.21
And they gave thanks to God, yea, all their men and all their women and all their children that could speak lifted their voices in the praises of their God. 24.22
And now the Lord said unto Alma: Haste thee and get thou and this people out of this land, for the Lamanites have awakened and do pursue thee; therefore get thee out of this land, and I will stop the Lamanites in this valley that they come no further in pursuit of this people. 24.23
They travel through the wilderness for 12 days, and then they reach Zarahemla and join up with King Mosiah.
And after they had been in the wilderness twelve days they arrived in the land of Zarahemla; and king Mosiah did also receive them with joy. 24.25

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