Monday, May 25, 2015

Alma 6:1 - 6:8

Alma 6:1 And now it came to pass that after Alma had made an end of speaking unto the people of the church, which was established in the city of Zarahemla, he ordained priests and elders, by laying on his hands according to the order of God, to preside and watch over the church.

Alma’s preaching had the desired effect. Church members were repenting of the evils of pride and spending their time in accumulating wealth and neglecting the poor. However, this caused a increase in church attendance and the need for more church leaders to care for them. Alma as leader of the church called and set apart more individuals to attend to this increase in attendance.

Alma 6:2 And it came to pass that whosoever did not belong to the church who repented of their sins were baptized unto repentance, and were received into the church.

In addition to the church members, non-members were being proselyted and as many as repented as well were baptized help increase church membership in Zarahemla.

Alma 6:3 And it also came to pass that whosoever did belong to the church that did not repent of their wickedness and humble themselves before God—I mean those who were lifted up in the pride of their hearts—the same were rejected, and their names were blotted out, that their names were not numbered among those of the righteous.

For the members of the church who would not repent or make the necessary changes in attitudes which meant to rid themselves of their pride and consider the needs of the poor, their names were removed from the records of the church and they were excommunicated.

Alma 6:4 And thus they began to establish the order of the church in the city of Zarahemla.

The net result of the church members acting as they should and the growing church membership along with the increase in church leadership, the affairs of the church became a lot more tolerable.

Alma 6:5 Now I would that ye should understand that the word of God was liberal unto all, that none were deprived of the privilege of assembling themselves together to hear the word of God.

There was no one who wanted to hear the word of God, turned away. Everyone, member or not were welcomed to hear the preaching of the church leadership at any time and place.

Alma 6:6 Nevertheless the children of God were commanded that they should gather themselves together oft, and join in fasting and mighty prayer in behalf of the welfare of the souls of those who knew not God.

And while the members were assembling themselves for their regular meetings, a major theme was be how to influence the non-members to repent and come unto Christ.

Alma 6:7 And now it came to pass that when Alma had made these regulations he departed from them, yea, from the church which was in the city of Zarahemla, and went over upon the east of the river Sidon, into the valley of Gideon, there having been a city built, which was called the city of Gideon, which was in the valley that was called Gideon, being called after the man who was slain by the hand of Nehor with the sword.

The affairs of the church in Zarahemla now seemed to be set in order by Alma’s preaching’s. Alma now set his sights on the church members in other parts of Nephite territory. His first stop is the city of Gideon just east of Zarahemla across the river Sidon. Gideon was in a valley called Gideon and you may remember this Gideon being the one who was killed by Nehor.

Alma 6:8 And Alma went and began to declare the word of God unto the church which was established in the valley of Gideon, according to the revelation of the truth of the word which had been spoken by his fathers, and according to the spirit of prophecy which was in him, according to the testimony of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who should come to redeem his people from their sins, and the holy order by which he was called. And thus it is written. Amen.

Alma used the same approached that he was inspired to use in Zarahemla to try to influence church members to live the gospel principles as they should in Gideon. He use the scriptures to show the people the future if they lived gospel principles and bore his testimony of Jesus and of His mission and the effects of what His life will be on all who believe on Him.

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