This post is part of a series and personal assignment titled, “Unveiling the Covenant Path in the Book of Mormon.” Through this we have revealed the Book of Mormon for what it really is. It started with featuring the Savior’s own witness of the doctrine of Christ in the Book of Mormon. Then starting from the beginning, we have demonstrated how other Book of Mormon prophets have taught and shared their own personal witness of the true covenant path (“the Doctrine of Christ”).
Today, I will share yet another witness of the Doctrine of Christ from Amulek in Alma 34. I will always invite you to first read the assignment (Alma 34) on your own first and use the spirit of the Lord to help you see the doctrine of Christ with new eyes. Then feel free to supplement your own reading with mine if you would like. There is so much to comment on in each chapter, but I will try to limit my comments to only those things that are relevant to the doctrine of Christ and this specific project. I invite you to seek the spirit to teach you their meaning. If you have the proper context of the Doctrine of Christ, it should be easier. Use the spirit to discern any of my personal messages. My comments are only there to help clarify the simplicity and beauty of Christ’s true saving doctrine.
The Witness of Amulek to Zoramites
1 And now it came to pass that after Alma had spoken these words unto them he sat down upon the ground, and Amulek arose and began to teach them, saying:
2 My brethren, I think that it is impossible that ye should be ignorant of the things which have been spoken concerning the coming of Christ, who is taught by us to be the Son of God [remember the Zoramites did not believe in the coming of a Christ]; yea, I know that these things were taught unto you bountifully before your dissension from among us.
3 And as ye have desired of my beloved brother that he should make known unto you what ye should do, because of your afflictions; and he hath spoken somewhat unto you to prepare your minds; yea, and he hath exhorted you unto faith and to patience—
4 Yea, even that ye would have so much faith as even to plant the word in your hearts, that ye may try the experiment of its goodness. [Have faith enough to start today.]
5 And we have beheld that the great question which is in your minds is whether the word be in the Son of God, or whether there shall be no Christ.
6 And ye also beheld that my brother has proved unto you, in many instances, that the word is in Christ unto salvation. [This is a powerful and succinct way of saying that truth—whether by personal revelation or through the words of true servants exercising the gifts of the spirit—is the means by which any person can be led through “in and through” their journey/relationship to the point in which you will receive personal salvation/redemption.]
7 My brother has called upon the words of Zenos, that redemption cometh through the Son of God [This might seem simple or even obvious because a person might think of this in terms of the Savior accomplishing the atonement, but this is a very important distinction about “redemption.” Personal redemption/salvation does not and cannot come through any other means other than the sanctifying power of the Lord. Your own works will not save you. Your membership in any group, association, or temporal church will not save you.], and also upon the words of Zenock; and also he has appealed unto Moses, to prove that these things are true [A witness that by following this doctrine that it is true.].
[This is really great opportunity break down the doctrine of Christ into foundational concepts because Amulek is going to do the same thing here for the Zoramites. They need to be taught these foundational concepts to overcome their unbelief and previous false traditions. Take time to ponder some of these concepts for additional depth and learning from the Spirit.]
8 And now, behold, I will testify unto you of myself that these things are true [Amulek’s additional witness of the truthfulness of Christ and of His doctrine]. Behold, I say unto you, that I do know that Christ shall come among the children of men, to take upon him the transgressions of his people, and that he shall atone for the sins of the world [Fulfilling this enables Jesus Christ to own your personal salvation/redemption. Therefore, you have to go and petition Him for it and none other person or thing. This is why when you receive it He claims you as His and you even become His—a son or daughter of Him. There is a mystery associated with this but seek the Lord for more understanding.] ; for the Lord God hath spoken it [Through true servants by way of the gifts of the spirit.].
9 For it is expedient that an atonement should be made [Why?]; for according to the great plan of the Eternal God there must be an atonement made, or else all mankind must unavoidably perish [spiritually perish and be subject to the devil]; yea, all are hardened [natural man/woman]; yea, all are fallen and are lost, and must perish except it be through the atonement which it is expedient should be made [This “fallen” condition is what we are upon being born into this world “by water, blood and spirit” (Moses 6:59). It means that we have a unique bond, chain or tie (best description) to this telestial world. The only way to overcome this which is to break this unique bond, chain, or tie is through “power”—a power beyond your own capabilities. This sufficient power is only found in a divine being of a certain spiritual estate. There is a title for this estate—a “Christ.” When a person’s bond/chain/tie is broken a person is being lifted out of a telestial spiritual state (or “estate) to a new terrestrial spiritual state (or “estate”). This is literally a transformational event. This transformational event is referred to most commonly in the Book of Mormon as “personal salvation” or “personal redemption” or “to be saved” or even “to be born again.” If a person chooses not to seek for this transformational event then they are as Amulek describes—”spiritually lost and must perish.” What is a person being “saved from?” From being “spiritually lost and must perish.” What is a person being born again into? From a telestial state into a terrestrial spiritual state (or “estate”).]
10 For it is expedient that there should be a great and last sacrifice; yea, not a sacrifice of man, neither of beast, neither of any manner of fowl; for it shall not be a human sacrifice; but it must be an infinite and eternal sacrifice. [Notice that these types of sacrifices that could all be done by mankind compared to “an infinite and eternal sacrifice” which cannot be done by a telestial man.]
11 Now there is not any man that can sacrifice his own blood which will atone for the sins of another [Indeed, nothing of your own will, creation or association can or will ever have sufficient power to break the bond, chain or tie.] Now, if a man murdereth, behold will our law, which is just, take the life of his brother? I say unto you, Nay.
12 But the law requireth the life of him who hath murdered; therefore there can be nothing which is short of an infinite atonement which will suffice for the sins of the world. [One of the requirements “of an infinite atonement” is that a certain estate level being condescend into mortality and offer up a continual broken heart and contrite spirit to fulfill the appropriate sacrifice in mortality.]
13 Therefore, it is expedient that there should be a great and last sacrifice, and then shall there be, or it is expedient there should be, a stop to the shedding of blood; then shall the law of Moses be fulfilled [having always pointed people to the Savior Himself]; yea, it shall be all fulfilled, every jot and tittle, and none shall have passed away.
14 And behold, this is the whole meaning of the law, every whit pointing to that great and last sacrifice; and that great and last sacrifice will be the Son of God, yea, infinite and eternal.
15 And thus he shall bring salvation to all those who shall believe on his name; this being the intent of this last sacrifice, to bring about the bowels of mercy, which overpowereth justice, and bringeth about means unto men that they may have faith unto repentance. [This so critical and yet it is so often misunderstood. There is a false tradition that the because the Savior fulfilled the atonement that are automatically redeemed from the fall. This is even considered by some to be “salvation” or “having been saved.” Because the Savior fulfilled the atonement, He is now authorized to be the “author and finisher of your faith.” Amulek clarifies that He is able to “bring salvation to all those who shall believe on His name” which is “the intent of the last sacrifice.” Without this great and last sacrifice each person would be left to the demands of justice. The mercy of the Lord is everything He has done, does and will do to help lift telestial mankind and make them “holy” (minimum terrestrial). It is only the Lord’s power that makes telestial mankind holy. Amulek also clarifies that the Lord’s atonement is what enables mankind to “have faith unto repentance.” It is “faith unto repentance” that allows a person to begin their journey to be made holy (receiving personal redemption/salvation).]
16 And thus mercy can satisfy the demands of justice, and encircles them in the arms of safety, while he that exercises no faith unto repentance is exposed to the whole law of the demands of justice [A person that is not redeemed is subject to being telestial forever. Their justice is because of their choice—free will/agency. No one will be compelled to ascend. Instead they will remain telestial for as long as they desire.]; therefore only unto him that has faith unto repentance is brought about the great and eternal plan of redemption [Again, Amulek clarifies that only those that choose to ascend through broken heart and contrite spirit which is to submit to the will of the Lord through faith (action)—only these will “redemption” be given. Which do you choose?]
[Now Amulek is going to encourage these people (even you and I) by teaching them how to develop your personal relationship with the Lord.]
17 Therefore may God grant unto you, my brethren, that ye may begin to exercise your faith unto repentance, that ye begin to call upon his holy name, that he would have mercy upon you; [This is like the formal way to start your journey. It follows a point of enlightenment where a person realizes they are fallen or lost until they call upon the Lord to help them to become redeemed. It is like vocally telling the Lord, “Lord, I choose you. I choose to start my journey to personal redemption. I cannot do this alone. I cannot even do this without your power to redeem me from my lost and fallen state. I commit to you this day to ‘always remember you’ and keep my eye single to your glory (which is the power that actually does the redeeming.) Lord, I commit myself to you. I beg of you to teach me whatever it is I need to know or whatever it is that I need to experience to help me ascend. My journey to come unto you starts now!”]
18 Yea, cry unto him for mercy; for he is mighty to save.
19 Yea, humble yourselves, and continue in prayer unto him.
20 Cry unto him when ye are in your fields, yea, over all your flocks.
21 Cry unto him in your houses, yea, over all your household, both morning, mid-day, and evening.
22 Yea, cry unto him against the power of your enemies.
23 Yea, cry unto him against the devil, who is an enemy to all righteousness.
24 Cry unto him over the crops of your fields, that ye may prosper in them.
25 Cry over the flocks of your fields, that they may increase.
26 But this is not all; ye must pour out your souls in your closets, and your secret places, and in your wilderness.
27 Yea, and when you do not cry unto the Lord, let your hearts be full, drawn out in prayer unto him continually for your welfare, and also for the welfare of those who are around you.
28 And now behold, my beloved brethren, I say unto you, do not suppose that this is all; for after ye have done all these things, if ye turn away the needy, and the naked, and visit not the sick and afflicted, and impart of your substance, if ye have, to those who stand in need—I say unto you, if ye do not any of these things, behold, your prayer is vain, and availeth you nothing, and ye are as hypocrites who do deny the faith.
29 Therefore, if ye do not remember to be charitable, ye are as dross, which the refiners do cast out, (it being of no worth) and is trodden under foot of men.
[v17-29: Notice these things are not an itemized checklist so to speak. They describe something greater and something even more enabling—a personal relationship with the Lord. Your relationship IS your journey. It is not something that you declare your desires once and so be it. It is something that is nourished (see chapters 32-33) over time. Why? Because your ascension is about learning to become a servant. Servants have to master principles of righteousness like broken heart and contrite spirit, hope, faith, and seeking the Lord’s will in all things and more. All thing are learned and strengthened “in and through” your relationship (journey) with the Lord.]
30 And now, my brethren, I would that, after ye have received so many witnesses, seeing that the holy scriptures testify of these things, ye come forth and bring fruit unto repentance. [Does this call speak to your soul?]
31 Yea, I would that ye would come forth and harden not your hearts any longer [not remain the natural man/woman that you are any longer]; for behold, now is the time and the day of your salvation [NOW is the time to begin your journey/relationship to salvation/redemption.]; and therefore, if ye will repent and harden not your hearts, immediately shall the great plan of redemption be brought about unto you. [How more plain can this doctrine of Christ be? How more plain can this invitation be?]
32 For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors. [Mortality is the time to perform your “personal labors in and through the Lord”—yea, mortality is the time to “doubt not, but be believing, and begin as in times of old, and come unto the Lord with all your heart, and work out your own salvation with fear and trembling before him” (Mormon 9:27). This is so plain!]
33 And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you [I plead with firmness] that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end [end of your mortal life]; for after this day of life [end of your mortality], which [mortality] is given us to prepare for eternity [Mortality is the chance to be redeemed and made holy. If not you cannot progress into further spiritual estates. You will remain second estate spiritually forever until you choose to fulfill the doctrine of Christ which is to be made holy and lifted to a new estate by the glory and power of the Lord.], behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed. [If you don’t while in a mortality then your opportunity will be passed until the Lord provides a new opportunity. I will not elaborate.]
34 Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis [end of your mortal life], that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world. [Without elaborating too much, you have an eternal identity that is comprised of an eternity of experiences. Your mortal experience adds further transformation to your eternal identity. If you ascend spiritually and are made holy here in mortality, it goes with you or you will “possess it in that eternal world.”]
35 For behold, if ye have procrastinated the day of your repentance even until death, behold, ye have become subjected to the spirit of the devil [If you do not ascend while in mortality, you are continually subject to the enticements “of the devil.”], and he doth seal you his [Being subject to the enticements of the devil, a person can covenant with the darkness to be sealed his (the devil’s).]; therefore, the Spirit of the Lord hath withdrawn from you, and hath no place in you, and the devil hath all power over you; and this is the final state of the wicked.
36 And this I know, because the Lord hath said he dwelleth not in unholy temples [The way for the Lord to “dwell in you” is through the gift of the Holy Ghost.], but in the hearts of the righteous doth he dwell [Those that are “the righteous” are the ones that have been “made holy” through a baptism of fire and Holy Ghost (personal redemption/salvation).]; yea, and he has also said that the righteous shall sit down in his kingdom [future post on this coming], to go no more out [a mystery I cannot teach]; but their garments should be made white through the blood of the Lamb [“Made holy” which is to be sanctified and justified through personal salvation (Moses 6:59-62)].
37 And now, my beloved brethren, I desire that ye should remember these things, and that ye should work out your salvation with fear before God, and that ye should no more deny the coming of Christ;
38 That ye contend no more against the Holy Ghost, but that ye receive it, and take upon you the name of Christ [all things that happen as a result of your baptism of fire and Holy Ghost]; that ye humble yourselves even to the dust, and worship God [stop worshipping idols (persons or things) that you think offer you salvation but NEVER will], in whatsoever place ye may be in, in spirit and in truth; and that ye live in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you. [Again, all characteristic of your personal relationship with Him.]
39 Yea, and I also exhort you, my brethren, that ye be watchful unto prayer continually, that ye may not be led away by the temptations of the devil, that he may not overpower you, that ye may not become his subjects at the last day; for behold, he rewardeth you no good thing. [All part of your relationship with the Lord]
40 And now my beloved brethren, I would exhort you to have patience, and that ye bear with all manner of afflictions; that ye do not revile against those who do cast you out because of your exceeding poverty, lest ye become sinners like unto them; [All part of your relationship with the Lord.]
41 But that ye have patience, and bear with those afflictions, with a firm hope that ye shall one day rest from all your afflictions. [Per chapters 32-33, this is a continuation of the plead to nourish your relationship with the Lord until He brings you to the event in which you will be personally redeemed from this lost and fallen spiritual estate you are in now.]
There are false traditions among us that keep us in a prideful and content state of the natural man/woman. Amulek is plain in his correct teachings of how you have to receive personal salvation. It is only upon conditions of humility, broken heart and contrite spirit that you can be lifted and made holy. Do not procrastinate your mortality—your spiritual ascension must take place here. Your relationship/journey is the means by which you have to “work out your own salvation with the Lord.” Know the doctrine of Christ. Be believing.
For more understanding of this covenant path and its milestones taught throughout the scriptures, you are welcome to begin your personal study and your own journey in and through the doctrine of Christ through The Doctrine of Christ Study Guide. Also, to help you increase your confidence in personal revelation and develop your own gift of discernment, I invite you to study The 3 Voices of Personal Revelation Study Guide.
JourneyDoctrineOfChrist.org is based on free, online study guides to help you learn, believe, live and teach the Doctrine of Christ. The Study Guides invite any and all to see and know this truth for themselves that the Savior, Jesus Christ, has, in fact, introduced His doctrine and He personally invites all to receive personal redemption and to even literally receive Him while in the flesh (mortality).
Blog posts are only intended to supplement the Study Guides. Per all blog posts, seek the understanding and confirmations from the Lord in your own personal revelation. Study guides are intended to point you to both the Lord’s written word and His voice (personal revelation). These study guides will help you uncover what the Doctrine of Christ is and other essential topics that will help you in your journey to literally “come unto Christ” while in mortality. All study guides are available at JourneyDoctrineOfChrist.org.