‘Come, Follow Me’ for June 24-30: What have Church leaders and publications said about Alma 13-16?

This week’s study guide includes Alma and Amulek’s imprisonment and Zeezrom’s conversion

This week’s “Come, Follow Me” study guide covers Alma 13-16, which includes Alma and Amulek’s imprisonment and Zeezrom’s conversion.

Following are a few quotes from past and present Church leaders and publications about these chapters.

Alma 13

“Whenever I hear anyone, including myself, say, ‘I know the Book of Mormon is true,’ I want to exclaim, ‘That’s nice, but it is not enough!’ We need to feel, deep in ‘the inmost part’ (Alma 13:27) of our hearts, that the Book of Mormon is unequivocally the word of God. We must feel it so deeply that we would never want to live even one day without it. I might paraphrase President Brigham Young in saying, ‘I wish I had the voice of seven thunders to wake up the people’ to the truth and power of the Book of Mormon.”

President Russell M. Nelson, then the president of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, October 2017 general conference, “The Book of Mormon: What Would Your Life Be Like without It?

“I witness that the Savior will strengthen and assist us to make sustained, paced progress. The example in the Book of Mormon of ‘many, exceedingly great many’ (Alma 13:12) in the ancient Church who were pure and spotless before God is a source of encouragement and comfort to me. I suspect those members of the ancient Church were ordinary men and women just like you and me. These individuals could not look upon sin save it were with abhorrence, and they ‘were made pure and entered into the rest of the Lord their God’ (Alma 13:12). And these principles and this process of spiritual progress apply to each of us equally and always.”

Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, October 2007 general conference, “Clean Hands and a Pure Heart

“I know Heavenly Father loves each one of us. ‘Having the love of God always in [our] hearts’ (Alma 13:29) gives us confidence to do hard things. I feel that love as I speak to you today. I hope you will remember the feelings you have when you hear testimonies about Heavenly Father’s love for you and then try to be in the places where you can feel the light of His love.”

— Sister Gayle M. Clegg, then the second counselor in the Primary general presidency, April 2003 general conference, “The Light of His Love

“Our privilege to bear the priesthood of God tonight has its beginnings in our premortal existence. The prophet Alma explained that men ordained to the Melchizedek Priesthood on earth have been ‘called and prepared from the foundation of the world according to the foreknowledge of God, on account of their exceeding faith and good works; in the first place being left to choose good or evil; therefore they having chosen good, and exercising exceedingly great faith, are called with a holy calling’ (Alma 13:3).

“The Lord has long intended you to be a creator or a continuer of the chain of faithful bearers in your priesthood family. It was your faith and wise exercise of free agency — in the premortal existence and here in mortality — which permitted you to receive the ‘holy calling’ of the priesthood.”

— Elder Keith K. Hilbig, then of the Seventy, October 2001 general conference, “Create or Continue Priesthood Links

Alma the Younger and Amulek are forced to watch the burning of believers in this picture from the Book of Mormon Videos.
Alma the Younger and Amulek are forced to watch the burning of believers in this picture from the Book of Mormon Videos. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Alma 14

“Consider some examples of faithful men and women who trusted God, confident that His promised blessings would be upon them in life or in death. Their faith was based not on what God did or did not do in a particular circumstance or moment in time but on knowing Him as their benevolent Father and Jesus Christ as their faithful Redeemer. …

“Alma and Amulek were delivered from prison in Ammonihah in answer to their plea, and their persecutors were slain (Alma 14:23-28). Earlier, however, these same persecutors had cast believing women and their children into a raging fire. Alma, witnessing the horrific scene in agony, was constrained by the Spirit not to exercise the power of God to ‘save them from the flames’ (Alma 14:10), that they might be received up to God in glory. …

“In the end, it is the blessing of a close and abiding relationship with the Father and the Son that we seek. It makes all the difference and is everlastingly worth the cost.”

Elder D. Todd Christofferson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, April 2022 general conference, “Our Relationship With God

“Submitting ‘cheerfully and with patience’ to all His will lets you learn precious if difficult lessons and eternal truths that will yield blessings. The example of Alma and Amulek is enlightening. While striving to do good among the people of Ammonihah, they were taken captive. Amulek trusted his more seasoned companion, Alma, who led him to greater confidence in the Lord. Forced to observe women and children consumed by fire, Amulek said, ‘Perhaps they will burn us also.’ Alma answered, ‘Be it according to the will of the Lord’ — a vital principle. ‘But … our work is not finished; therefore they burn us not’ (Alma 14:12-13).

“The chief judge and others over many days smote, spit upon, starved, questioned, and harassed them with mocking words and threats. Though commanded to speak, they withstood, bound and naked, in silence waiting patiently for the Lord to inspire them to act. Then ‘the power of God was upon Alma and Amulek, and they rose.’ Alma cried, “Give us strength according to our faith which is in Christ, even unto deliverance. And they broke the cords with which they were bound’ (Alma 14:15, 19, 24-26). The earth shook; the prison walls were rent. All who smote Alma and Amulek were slain, and they were freed. On another occasion Alma prayed, ‘O Lord … have mercy on this man, and heal him according to his faith which is in Christ’ (Alma 15:10).

“These two examples give the essential key to healing. The Lord will give relief with divine power when you seek deliverance in humility and faith in Jesus Christ.”

— Elder Richard G. Scott, then of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, April 1994 general conference, “To Be Healed

“Picture Alma and Amulek sitting side by side bound with cords in prison (Alma 14:22). Wicked men persecuted them, imprisoned them and allowed them to suffer great afflictions because they were testifying of the truth. We know that God’s children, since time began, have suffered for righteousness’ sake and will continue to be tried. I gain strength from reading about Alma and Amulek as I endeavor to meet my individual trials.”

— Sister Ruth B. Wright, then the second counselor in the Primary general presidency, October 1990 general conference, “Draw Strength From the Book of Mormon

Alma the Younger is imprisoned and mocked in this picture from the Book of Mormon Videos.
Alma the Younger is imprisoned and mocked in this picture from the Book of Mormon Videos. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Alma 15

“In the Book of Mormon, we read about Zeezrom, who was way beyond doubting — in fact, he ‘was a man who was expert in the devices of the devil’ (Alma 11:21). It’s safe to say that he didn’t believe in Jesus as our Savior — he didn’t believe in God, period. His only goal was to make others doubt too.

“But after his conversation with Amulek, something changed. His doubt-driven heart became open to the Spirit. He listened to the words of these prophets instead of people who didn’t believe. And he ‘began to inquire of [Alma and Amulek] diligently’ (Alma 12:8). He started to believe the words they had spoken about God, His Son, and repentance (see Alma 14:6-7). He went from doubting to seeking answers to sincere questions.

“Zeezrom’s belief ‘in the power of Christ unto salvation’ and ‘in the redemption of Christ’ saved him and healed him (Alma 15:6, 8).

“When you find yourself doubting, who do you turn to? People who fuel your doubts or your faith? …

“When we look beyond our doubts toward the Savior, that’s when our doubts can begin to be swallowed up in our faith.”

— Mindy Selu in the December 2023 Liahona article, “To Those Who Doubt

“Alma and Amulek were preaching in the land where Zeezrom was trying to gain money as a lawyer by stirring up the people against Alma and Amulek. Zeezrom tried to trick Alma and Amulek with his questions, but they answered and rebuked him. Zeezrom’s thoughts were revealed to them by the Spirit. (See Alma 11-12.)

“As the conversation continued, Zeezrom was stunned into silence. He began to recognize his faults and felt serious guilt over his sins and what he’d done to lead the people away. He soon tried to undo some of the damage he’d caused, saying, ‘Behold, I am guilty, and these men are spotless before God’ (Alma 14:7).

“But it didn’t work. The people cast Zeezrom out of their city. His guilt and despair over what he’d done—including a mistaken fear that his preaching against Alma and Amulek had led to their death — caused Zeezrom to fall sick with fever, ‘scorched with a burning heat’ (Alma 15:3).

“The structure he’d built for his life had crumbled to its foundation. But that’s not where Zeezrom’s story ends.

“Once he learned that Alma and Amulek were still alive, Zeezrom took courage and asked for them to come to him. When they did, Zeezrom asked to be healed. Through his faith Zeezrom was healed fully. He was then baptized and began to preach from that time forth (see Alma 15:11-12).

“Zeezrom’s new life, this time with God as his architect, had just begun.”

— David Dickson in the January 2016 Liahona article, “Let God Be Your Architect

Alma the Younger and Amulek heal Zeezrom through priesthood power in this picture from the Book of Mormon Videos.
Alma the Younger and Amulek heal Zeezrom through priesthood power in this picture from the Book of Mormon Videos. | The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Alma 16

“Changes in organization or procedures are a testimony that revelation is ongoing. While doctrines remain fixed, the methods or procedures do not.

“For instance, when the editions of the scriptures were published, many corrections were made on the basis of original or printer’s manuscripts, some of which had not previously been available. For instance, in Alma 16:5, the word ‘whether’ had appeared. The original manuscript for that verse does not exist. However, when we found the printer’s copy, we saw that the Prophet Joseph Smith had changed the word to ‘whither.’ ‘Whether’ means ‘if’; ‘whither’ means ‘where.’ The next verse verifies ‘whither’ to be correct.”

— Elder Boyd K. Packer, then of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, October 1989 general conference, “Revelation in a Changing World

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