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Alma, son of Alma

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According to the Book of Mormon, Alma, the son of Alma (pronounced /ˈælmə/) was a Nephite prophet often referred to as "Alma the Younger" to distinguish him from his father, who is often referred to as "Alma the Elder". These appellations, "the Younger" and "the Elder", are not used in the Book of Mormon; they are distinctions made by scholars, useful because both individuals were prominent during the same time period and filled a similar cultural and religious role.

Summary of his life

Alma the Younger lived in Zarahemla during the end of the reign of the Nephite King Mosiah. As a young man, he, the four sons of Mosiah, and others wanted to destroy the church and actively persecuted its members. After they were visited personally by an angel and were rebuked for their actions, Alma fell into an unconscious state where for two days he lay unable to move until he felt within himself that he had been forgiven of his sins. He and those who persecuted church members with him abdicated their role as persecutors and became followers of Christ.[1]

Alma the Younger subsequently became the first elected chief judge of the Nephites and their religious leader. After deciding that the Nephites were becoming more wicked, he resigned his post as chief judge and began traveling from city to city to preach to the Nephites. He began in Zarahemla, moving onto Gideon and finally Melek. His next stop was Ammonihah, whose inhabitants were much more hardened than those of the previous three cities.[2]

In Ammonihah the people were very wicked. Because Satan had them under his control, they would not listen to Alma. While trying to speak to them he was thrown out of the city, and eventually decided on a different route to the south. There he met Amulek, who fed him and housed him for a time. In the city streets, the two of them joined up and preached to the people, being countered by a lawyer named Zeezrom. After Amulek had silenced Zeezrom through his teaching and aroused his conscience, Alma took his turn, preaching to the people with similar results. When finished, Alma and Amulek were cast into prison and delivered by a miracle.[3]

Several years later, he met up with a man named Korihor, who was anti-Christ. This Korihor tried to lead the Nephites astray, but failed miserably once Alma had confronted him, and he also took away Korihor's power of speech. Korihor himself eventually went among a group of Nephite dissenters called Zoramites while begging, and was run over and killed in the streets.[4]

These same Zoramites were found to practice things that perverted the ways of the Lord. This led Alma to more continue his missionary work, this time among these people. While amongst them he was most successful among the poor.[5]

Alma's final instruction was to his sons, Helaman, Shiblon, and Corianton. He gave each separate lessons, and finally gave the records of the church to Helaman. He then departed, in the 19th year of the reign of the judges (or 73 B.C.) as if to go to Melek, but was never heard from again. Both Mormon and Helaman believed that he was taken up like Moses of old, and buried by the Lord.[6]


Alma had several notable descendants in the Book of Mormon narrative as shown in the family tree below:

Alma the Elder
Alma the Younger
Son of Helaman
Son of Helaman
Son of Helaman
Nephi the Disciple
Son of Nephi

See also

Preceded by
Mosiah II, son of Benjamin, as the last king of the Nephites
Chief Judge of the Nephites
the 1st-9th years of the reign of the judges,
or 92-83 B.C.
Succeeded by
Preceded by
King Mosiah II, son of Benjamin, as one of his royal duties
Nephite military leader
the 5th-? years of the reign of the judges, or 87-? BC
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Mosiah II, son of Benjamin
Nephite record keeper
the 1st-19th years of the reign of the judges,
or 91-73 BC
Succeeded by


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