Humility and Faith Can Give us the Strength to Face Adversity
Being humble and having faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, will strengthen us in the face of adversity. Often adversity comes as challenges to our faith, temptations, or even threats because of our beliefs. Two groups of Nephites, faced such challenges as they lived near their enemies the Lamanites. The Lamanites forced them into servitude and kept them from freely worshiping Jesus Christ. A group of Lamanites also faced annihilation because of their conversion to the Lord.
The People of King Limhi
The people of Limhi had lived next to the Lamanites who persecuted them. The Lamanites would “smite them on their cheeks, and exercise authority over them; and began to put heavy burdens upon their backs, and drive them as they would a dumb ass.” (Mosiah 21:3). “Yea, all this was done that the word of the Lord might be fulfilled” (Mosiah 21:4) as had been prophesied by Abinadi (see Mosiah 12:2, 4–5) due to their sins under the wicked King Noah.
The people still lacked humility despite King Limhi being more righteous. The people under King Noah had boasted in their own strength (Mosiah 11:18-19), and still felt they could take on the Lamanites in battle. After losing in battle three times, “they did humble themselves even to the dust, subjecting themselves to the yoke of bondage, submitted themselves to be smitten, and to be driven to and fro, and burdened, according to the desires of their enemies” (Mosiah 21:13–14).
Though their humility may have seemed like weakness to the Lamanites, to God it signified that they were ready to repent and rely on him. He then gave them the strength to endure their captivity. The “Lord did hear their cries, and began to soften the hearts of the Lamanites that they began to ease their burdens” (Mosiah 21:15–16). Limhi’s people learned Humility from living in bondage.
King Limhi and his people made a promise to God and honored their covenant with baptism. (Mosiah 21:35). As they continued to show faith and humility, God eventually inspired Gideon to devise a plan for Limhi’s people to escape from the Lamanites (Mosiah 22:5-8) and eventually they joined the rest of the Nephites in the Land of Zarahemla (Mosiah 22:13).
The People of Alma
The “Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith” (Mosiah 23:21). “Nevertheless—whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day.” (Mosiah 23:22). Sometimes blessings don’t come right away but require patience.
Alma told his people to not be frightened, but “that they should remember the Lord their God and he would deliver them.” (Mosiah 23:27). “they hushed their fears, and began to cry unto the Lord that he would soften the hearts of the Lamanites” (Mosiah 23:28). The “Lord did soften the hearts of the Lamanites” (Mosiah 23:29).
The wicked ruler Amulon would not let Alma and his followers pray out loud. They “did not raise their voices to the Lord their God, but did pour out their hearts to him; and he did know the thoughts of their hearts” (Mosiah 24:12). The “Lord came to them in their afflictions, saying: Lift up your heads and be of good comfort, for I know of the covenant which ye have made unto me; and I will covenant with my people and deliver them out of bondage.” (Mosiah 24:13–16).
God gave Alma revelation to lead his people out of bondage from the Lamanites. After they showed their gratitude by “[pouring] out their thanks to God because he had been merciful unto them, and eased their burdens” while they were in bondage. (Mosiah 24:21–22).
A generation later many of these same Lamanites decided to call themselves The Anti-Nephi-Lehi’s because they “became a righteous people; they did lay down the weapons of their rebellion” (Alma 23:7). In doing so they covenanted with God to never fight again or shed blood, even go so far as to bury their weapons (Alma 24:15-16).
There were still many Lamanites who hadn’t been converted to follow Jesus Christ, and they didn’t like that their king was one of the Anti-Nephi-Lehi’s, so they went war against them (Alma 24:20). When the Anti-Nephi-Lehi’s saw the Lamanites coming against them, they didn’t allow fear to destroy their faith, but instead were humble and showed faith in Jesus Christ by going out to meet the Lamanites (Alma 24:21). Without any resistance, the Lamanites easily killed over a thousand of the Anti-Nephi-Lehi’s (Alma 24:22).
The Anti-Nephi-Lehi’s took comfort that their fallen people having “no reason to doubt but what they were saved” (Alma 24:26). At the same time, the Lamanites stopped killing and started to feel sorrow for what they were doing. They ended up also being converted to the Lord (Alma 24:27).
Humility and Faith Lead to Salvation
How has suffering in your life helped you become more humble, obedient, and prayerful? How has faith in Jesus Christ helped you be less fearful?
Even if we aren’t facing such drastic challenges because of our faith, or in danger of being killed because of our beliefs, it is important to note that those who do, who are humble and have faith in Jesus Christ, will be saved. It’s also important to know that through these sacrifices, many more can also be converted and saved from their sins. Our humility and faith can also help us to endure our afflictions, to not be afraid of our enemies, and still be saved regardless of what may happen to us.
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