Alma 55:51 - 5:55
Alma 55:51 And also the Spirit saith unto me, yea, crieth unto me with a mighty voice, saying: Go forth and say unto this people—Repent, for except ye repent ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of heaven.
The Spirit was putting pressure on Alma to tell the people of Zarahemla that they must repent or heaven will be out of reach for them.
Alma 55:52 And again I say unto you, the Spirit saith: Behold, the ax is laid at the root of the tree; therefore every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit shall be hewn down and cast into the fire, yea, a fire which cannot be consumed, even an unquenchable fire. Behold, and remember, the Holy One hath spoken it.
The Spirit makes the analogy of a woodsman getting ready to chop down a tree. If the tree is not bearing good fruit then it his job to cut down that tree. Once more, after the tree is cut down, it is to be burned. But the fire is such that it will not go out and will continually burn to take more unproductive trees. This was the words of the Spirit to Alma.
Alma 55:53 And now my beloved brethren, I say unto you, can ye withstand these sayings; yea, can ye lay aside these things, and trample the Holy One under your feet; yea, can ye be puffed up in the pride of your hearts; yea, will ye still persist in the wearing of costly apparel and setting your hearts upon the vain things of the world, upon your riches?
Alma is now saying, after hearing what the Spirit is telling the people, how can they reject these things? If they cannot, they are literally stomping on the Savior and His message of hope and doing their own thing, which is displayed by their pride and their wearing of expensive clothing and jewelry and other worthless stuff. Instead of focusing on what will prepare the people for eternity, they are concentrating of accumulating stuff they cannot take with them when they die. They need to concentrate on things that they cannot take with them when they die, such as helping the poor and the needy.
Alma 55:54 Yea, will ye persist in supposing that ye are better one than another; yea, will ye persist in the persecution of your brethren, who humble themselves and do walk after the holy order of God, wherewith they have been brought into this church, having been sanctified by the Holy Spirit, and they do bring forth works which are meet for repentance—
Alma warns them that measuring their statue and other around them by their possessions is a grave mistake. It causes those with much to look down on those who have less. The measure of a person is how much work are they doing trying to help others rise above their situation. The members of the church are doing this and are not caught up in trying to accumulate as much stuff as they can. They are doing what will bring them a reward in heaven not a reward on this earth.
Alma 55:55 Yea, and will you persist in turning your backs upon the poor, and the needy, and in withholding your substance from them?
Alma continues to ask the rich how long will they continue to withhold their substance from the poor and the needy?
The Lord seems wholly concerned that every person has what they need to be secure in their person, have enough to eat, clothes to ware and even their wants and desires which may have nothing to do with survival. I have been impressed with this thought for many years. The Lord is even concern that I am able to pursue my interests even though they have nothing to do with my personal survival in this world.