Episode 34: Alma 10-12

September 1, 2014


Click to Listen: Episode 34: Alma 10-12

Time for an epic matchup! In the god corner, we have a rich man puffed up with pride who is one second away from calling down the wrath of god on a whole city. And in the devil corner we have… a lawyer. Which of these two fighters has even a shred of righteousness? Who will reign supreme to win over the hearts of the people? All this and more in Episode 34.

“Drink” Count – 24

Exactly 4 Beers


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15 Comments on “Episode 34: Alma 10-12”

  1. Fel Says:

    Only 4 beers? Joseph Smith needs up to his game.


  2. Duke of Earl Grey Says:

    Before we judge Amulek a hypocrite for his wealth and bling, let’s remember his story isn’t over yet. But I’m much more interested in chapter 10 verse 11: “For behold, he hath blessed mine house, he hath blessed me, and my women, and my children…” Wait, what? Women, plural? Does this mean Amulek was a polygamist? Because back in the Jacob chapters, God said polygamy was a no-no for the Nephites. So maybe Amulek was sinning in more ways than just being rich?

    Don’t worry, you didn’t forget about the story of Aminadi interpreting the writing on the temple wall, because there is no other mention of it. It was no doubt a very important story, but the Book of Mormon is an abridgment, and there’s only so much room for cool stories, so we’re just going to have to miss out on this one. Or we could cynically suggest it’s an authorial convention, the sort of reference that gets dropped in an off-hand sort of way to give the verisimilitude of a deeper history than what gets presented to us, like the time Aragorn mentions the cats of Queen Beruthiel, even though Tolkien has no intention of telling us that story.

    And I can pretty much guarantee that no archeologist has ever found a senine of gold.


    • My Book of Mormon Says:

      But whether or not Amulek’s story is done or not, he WAS bragging about how rich he was! This book has repeatedly described how this was a truly despicable act, yet there he is OPENING HIS SERMON BY BRAGGING ABOUT BEING RICH! So, even if he later repents, or even gives away all his riches to the needy, it doesn’t change the fact that he was asking (no, demanding) that the people recognize him as a “Man of God”, immediately after he broke one of the most repeated rules in their rule book. Am I still missing something?
      And thanks for clarifying the whole Aminadi translating thing. Funny that ol’ Joe wasn’t creative enough to come up with his own backstory for Aminadi… he had to go and steal Daniel’s story.


      • auntiecatherine Says:

        I think Joe would claim that Amulek wasn’t boasting, just trying to establish that he was a solid citizen not some weirdo off the streets – or rather out of The Wilderness.


  3. Tina Says:

    Great idea to donate excess to the Taylor Scholarship. I totally support this!


    • My Book of Mormon Says:

      I just got a message today from White Field’s that I can’t wait to share with everyone. Really inspiring feedback from them! It’s amazing to hear how all the Mymo support is really making a difference.


  4. Fel Says:

    Sorry for the double post but I just listened to your guest appearance on Outer Darkness. Loved it. Do you think, after you’re done with the Book of Mormon, that we could get just one episode where you go over your back story, what it was like to grow up in a fundamentalist christian household, how you got out while never truly believing, and what brought you to do a reading on the Book of Mormon (I know that was covered in Outer Darkness, but it bears repeating on your own podcast)? I found your history fascinating but you really didn’t delve into it very much. I find that you can learn a lot about a person if you know where they’re coming from.


    • My Book of Mormon Says:

      You should probably also listen to “No Religion Required” Episodes 22 & 23. We got pretty deep into my backstory there. But yes, I do understand what you’re saying, it might be nice to have a little “David Michael deep dive” in an episode of this show. I’ll keep that in mind. Thanks for the advice!


      • Fel Says:

        I just caught both episodes of Outer Darkness. It was really entertaining though I’m still in favor of a podcast dedicated 100% to your backstory.


  5. jwartena Says:

    Awesome use of the money with the Taylor Scholarship!

    Amulek’s boasting about being rich seems to go hand in hand with his “hard heart” and “rebelling against God.” He initially sets up that he was wealthy and wicked. This is to counterpoint later when he shows that he has given it all up and become righteous.

    It’s the wealthy rebellious vs the humble penitent, pretty common in scriptural narrative.

    Once again, right off the bat, we have “cunning devices” and lawyers trying to thwart Alma/Amulek. This is just echoing the New Testament.

    However, these lawyers sounds MUCH more like Western legal representatives than the scholars of the law “lawyers” in the Bible. Apparently the Nephites have vastly changed the legal system of their Hebrew forebears, because this type of lawyer did NOT exist.

    I love how you dissect the false prophet problem and issue of reasoning in this story. It’s so blatent, and you clearly lay it out.

    Looking at it from an exmo perspective, Alma/Amulek just seem to be ranting and yelling while people are trying to ask honest questions.

    No, this coinage is not brought up any other place in the book. All that space is used for an explanation that is never brought up again.


    • Duke of Earl Grey Says:

      “No, this coinage is not brought up any other place in the book. All that space is used for an explanation that is never brought up again.”

      I can think of at least one place where “senine” is used again, when someone will be quoting a Bible verse mentioning money, but paraphrasing it with a Nephite spin. But I don’t want to spoil it.


      • jwartena Says:

        You’re right, Duke, I should amend my statement.

        In no other part of the book is knowledge of the Nephite monetary system required, except for one term, “senine,” that’s easily known from context.


  6. Jesus Shuttlesworth Says:

    You often get confused because you do not read or reread carefully, which is understandable given the format of this podcast, and its focus on entertainment and mocking rather than understanding the Book of Mormon. Just keep in mind that the Book of Mormon is a complex book and there are many parts of it that must be read carefully to be understood correctly. When you encounter an apparent contradiction, instead of just assuming the the characters are crazy and are talking nonsense (like you normally assume), perhaps keep in mind that you often misread or miss important details, and the story might just make more sense than you are giving it credit for.

    Zeezrom asks “Shall he save his people *in their sins*?” Amulek says no. The key part of that phrase is “in their sins”, which you basically misunderstood (and paraphrased) as “from their sins.”

    The point Amulek makes in response is that people must repent of their sins and live righteously in order to be forgiven and saved. They’re saved *from* their sins (after repentance), but not *in their sins* (without repentance). This is one of the key differences between the true church and the Nehors that you missed because you focused only on the paying of priests.

    Nehor taught:

    Alma 1:4 And he also testified unto the people that *all mankind should be saved* at the last day, and that they need not fear nor tremble, but that they might lift up their heads and rejoice; for the Lord had created all men, and had also redeemed all men; and, in the end, *all men should have eternal life*.

    Nehors teach all men will be saved, no matter what they do, and regardless of repentance. The true church teaches that only those who repent of their sins and follow Jesus Christ will be saved.

    This same point confuses you in the next episode.

    On another topic, the weights and measures system in the Book of Mormon is really quite amazing, although almost no one understands it on first reading as demonstrated in this episode.

    Here is an excellent article that explains some of it http://maxwellinstitute.byu.edu/publications/jbms/8/2/S00006-Weighing_and_Measuring_in_the_Worlds_of_the_Book_of_Mormon.html

    I highly recommend the two yellow sections entitled “The Numerical Elegance of the Nephite System.”


    • My Book of Mormon Says:

      Thanks Jesus, this was actually really helpful. So, it sounds like Nehor believed in an all-loving/all-benevolent God, whereas the rest of “the true church” believed that His benevolence has strict conditions. I didn’t catch that, so thanks for pointing it out. It does make a little more sense now.

      And thanks for giving me a pass for not being able to read super carefully. You are correct that it wouldn’t be very entertaining. However, I don’t think that I overtly go out of my way to be “mocking”. I make it a point to call out the good points too!

      Again, thanks for the feedback.


  7. Molly Says:

    Mormons say “What the Eff,” THAT’S WHO.


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