Words of Mormon 1:11 - 1:18
Words of Mormon 1:11 And they were handed down from king Benjamin, from generation to generation until they have fallen into my hands. And I, Mormon, pray to God that they may be preserved from this time henceforth. And I know that they will be preserved; for there are great things written upon them, out of which my people and their brethren shall be judged at the great and last day, according to the word of God which is written.
The combined records were now kept and preserved all together. They were all past down the generations until they came to Mormon. The records contain great and marvelous spiritual and historical events that took place among the Nephite and Lamanite peoples. And it will be from these records that they will be judged at judgment day. [These records will be opened at judgment day and the people will be evaluated in relation to them. The Lord will show just how they behaved during both times of peace and plenty and war and great want. So it will be with each of us at that day. Records are of great value and we should not discount the value and not think they are for this world only but will be duplicated in heaven as well. We are poor at keeping records but they seem to be a great importance to the Lord. They will be there for each of us to look at whenever we want in the afterlife. I can imagine that the library will be huge considering that there will be each individual's life and the comings and goings of the people as a whole.]
Words of Mormon 1:12 And now, concerning this king Benjamin—he had somewhat of contentions among his own people.
Now getting to king Benjamin, Mormon relates that he had to deal with problems among his own people.
Words of Mormon 1:13 And it came to pass also that the armies of the Lamanites came down out of the land of Nephi, to battle against his people. But behold, king Benjamin gathered together his armies, and he did stand against them; and he did fight with the strength of his own arm, with the sword of Laban.
The Lamanites had come up from the land of Nephi to attach the Nephites. However, king Benjamin had gather an army of his peers and fought them off. King Benjamin fought himself using the sword of Laban.
Words of Mormon 1:14 And in the strength of the Lord they did contend against their enemies, until they had slain many thousands of the Lamanites. And it came to pass that they did contend against the Lamanites until they had driven them out of all the lands of their inheritance.
The Lord was with the Nephites in so much they were able to defeat the Lamanites with great loss of life among the Lamanites. The Nephites did not stop the fighting until all the Lamanites were driven out of the land of Zarahemla.
Words of Mormon 1:15 And it came to pass that after there had been false Christs, and their mouths had been shut, and they punished according to their crimes;
King Benjamin also dealt with false Christs by exposing their deceit and fraud. They were punished as liars according to the laws among them. [I guess one could not just stand up and say whatever he wanted without having to prove he was right if challenged by another.]
Words of Mormon 1:16 And after there had been false prophets, and false preachers and teachers among the people, and all these having been punished according to their crimes; and after there having been much contention and many dissensions away unto the Lamanites, behold, it came to pass that king Benjamin, with the assistance of the holy prophets who were among his people—
False prophets and preachers were also exposed and punished for their crimes. There was also many who thought it was better if they left town and go over to the Lamanites rather than stand trial under Nephite law. There were true prophets that exposed these false ones and they were all punished or left town.
Words of Mormon 1:17 For behold, king Benjamin was a holy man, and he did reign over his people in righteousness; and there were many holy men in the land, and they did speak the word of God with power and with authority; and they did use much sharpness because of the stiffneckedness of the people—
King Benjamin was a righteous king as apposed to the wicked ones that were in power most of the time. The true prophets also the exposed the false ones. Strong words were used against the people by both the king and the true prophets to get them to shape up into the kind of people the Lord could bless.
Words of Mormon 1:18 Wherefore, with the help of these, king Benjamin, by laboring with all the might of his body and the faculty of his whole soul, and also the prophets, did once more establish peace in the land.
This conversion of the people required the entire attention and devotion of both king and prophets to bring peace once again into the land of Zarahemla.