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TitleExcursus: Religion of the Nehors
Publication TypeExcerpt
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsGardner, Brant A.
Book TitleSecond Witness, Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon: Volume 4, Alma
PublisherGreg Kofford Books
Place PublishedSalt Lake City
KeywordsAlma the Younger; Apostasy; Atonement; Messiah; Nehor; Order of the Nehors; Pride; Priestcraft

The book of Alma begins with religious conflict and, by the end, escalates into  military conflict. Mormon saw the later wars as the direct result of the early religious dissensions, which led not just to disagreement but to defection. The worst conflicts with “Lamanites” are not with those had always been Lamanites, but with apostate Nephites who became Lamanites. Mormon saw internal contention and religio-political fission as the cause of the Nephites’ virtual destruction before the Messiah came to Bountiful. Alma2 apparently saw the same problem and attempted to heal the social rifts by religious renewal.