Leaders of integrity or infamy found in The Book of Mormon provide the fodder for spiritual growth and self-improvement. It was made for us.
If all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold, the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever; yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men. Alma 48:17
Moroni, Spiritually Astute
Captain Moroni lived within a culture that understood the Law of Moses didn't represent the end of Jehovah's commandments and lived the Law as it pertained to Jesus Christ.
Moroni, born about 100 years (or so) before Jesus Christ, was a Christian! Christianity existed as a faith among the Nephites who lived in the ancient Americas, Moroni's people. Though these ancient people practiced the Law of Moses, they were technically Messianic Jews; however, Christian applies as well.
Generally, Nephites knew all the sacrifices of livestock under obligation to the Law they performed represented a similitude of the ultimate sacrifice of a coming Messiah in their future.
Moroni became captain of the Nephite armies and sought the guidance of a prophet of God, revealing his personality of substance and strength, and faith in God.
Mormon, the chief writer of the Book of Mormon, informed, "Moroni, ...knowing of the prophecies of Alma, sent certain men unto him, desiring him that he should inquire of the Lord whither the armies of the Nephites should go to defend themselves against the Lamanites." Alma 43:23
Having received the blessing of God in his appointment as captain of his nation and directions on how to manage protecting his people, Captain Moroni, the innovator, armed his people with shields, breastplates, helmets, and thick clothing for battle, uncommon among the cultures of his society! He also armed his people with the Lord's advice. Never a move he made without first consulting God.
Knowing the hatred their enemies harbored toward his people, Moroni wanted to know if God would allow them to retaliate against them for invading their lands and where to find them.
God told Alma, the prophet, dissenters who left the Nephite nation and other enemies would attack the less secure parts of their country. The (conglomeration of cultures representing what the writers in the Book of Mormon call) Lamanites invaded the sovereign territory of the Nephites only to succumb, in part, to the fright of the Nephites' tactical gear.
Using his keen logic and the aid of a prophet, Captain Moroni prepared his people in faith, battle skill, and arms. God told Alma, to inform the Captain to head their foes off in their flight. A severe battle ensued, and Moroni prevailed.
Moroni told the defeated Lamanites and Nephite traitors his faith helped him prevail! Specifically to Zerahemnah, the Lamanite arm leader he said, "ye behold that the Lord is with us; and ye behold that He has delivered you into our hands. And now I would that ye should understand that this is done unto us because of our religion and our faith in Christ. And now ye see that ye cannot destroy this our faith." Alma 44:3-4
Moroni quickly gave the credit to God that his army won, witnessing to those people that God would protect any people who would put their trust in Him and keep His commandments.
FYI, Another Moroni
The Book of Mormon mentions two men named Moroni: Chief Captain Moroni, the subject of this article, and Moroni, the son of Mormon. The latter is who kept the record from which The Book of Mormon was translated into English.
Moroni, Full of Compassion and Passion!
God allows His people to defend themselves as long as they do not commit the first or second offense as Moroni learned, which empowered him to wage a just war, a defensive war. Seeing the decimation his army inflicted on the Lamanites due to their bare skin, Moroni, full of compassion, stopped the bloodshed and entreated the Lamanites to stop the unjust war they waged. It wasn't in his character to seek the destruction of any person. Moroni only sought to maintain the freedom of his people, which came at high costs!
Moroni's passion climaxed in his speech to Zerahemnah when he informed them God delivered them into the Nephites' power and they should make an oath to never attack Nephites again. Zerahemnah declined that oath! With his life in the hands of his enemy, Zerahemnah refused to make an oath of peace!
Further, he said of the Nephite victory "take our weapons of war, and suffer that we may depart into the wilderness; otherwise, we will retain our swords, and we will perish or conquer." Alma 44:8
He did not believe it was because of their religion they won, being that he was a former Nephite and of a different faith. He told the Captain it was their gear that saved them.
"We are not of your faith," Zerahemnah declared. "We do not believe that it is God that has delivered us into your hands; but we believe that it is your cunning that has preserved you from our swords." Alma 44:9
"Here are our weapons of war," Zerahemnah surrendered. "We will deliver them up unto you, but we will not suffer ourselves to take an oath unto you, which we know that we shall break." Alma 44:8
Moroni, astonished (I assume), returned all the weapons to the Lamanites and informed them, "We will end the conflict." Alma 44:10
Zerahemnah, livid at this point, oaths obviously important to him, would rather die than commit to an idea he could not promise to adhere.
"Now," continued Captain Moroni, "I cannot recall the words which I have spoken, therefore as the Lord liveth, ye shall not depart except ye depart with an oath that ye will not return again against us to war." (Alma 44:11) More conversation occurred but suffice it to say, the Nephites massacred them until they sued for peace.
Moroni, Man of Honor
Zerahemnah ate every word he uttered against Moroni when he sued vehemently for the work of death to cease! His words aren't recorded in the record as it exists today, but, I gather they were pathetic, and not in a disgusting way, but a shameful display due to his arrogance.
This man knew Moroni meant business following that battle. Zerahemnah underestimated the Nephites' ability and tenacity. Once Zerahemnah and the remaining members of his army made the covenant of peace, Moroni allowed them to depart in peace as promised.
It took a lost scalp and a few more deaths to get the oath to end this great war. This group of Lamanites left with every intention to honor the oath they took, but, being wicked by choice, these people later proved they wouldn't venerate the oath just as Zerahemnah feared would happen.
Following the oath of peace, stability reigned in the land for several years, which Moroni and his people took to prepare spiritually, mentally, and militarily. Moroni was a man of faith and action!
- Acts of Captain Moroni: United We Stand!
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- Acts of Captain Moroni: Shaker of Hell
Captain Moroni was a patriot and a man of God who did not fear to fight for his country and his Faith! Part one covers the cultural and military aspects of Moroni's life.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2018 Rodric Anthony Johnson