Journal of Book of Mormon Studies


Kylie Turley


Alma, repentance, consequence, Ammonihah, Amulek


Alma The Younger's missionary journey to Ammonihah is one of the most disturbing episodes in the Book of Mormon: scriptures are burned (Alma 14:8); converted males are "cast out" and stoned by former friends (Alma 14:7); Amulek, a respected citizen, and Alma, high priest of the church and retired chief judge, are spit upon, mocked, imprisoned, stripped naked, humiliated, starved, and beaten (Alma 14:4-22); and innocent women and children are "cast into the fire" and burned to death (Alma 14:8). Alma and Amulek are "carried... forth to the place of martyrdom;' and forced to "witness" (Alma 14:9) the "pains of the women and children'' as they are "consuming in the fire" (Alma 14:10). These events, the Ammonihahite disregard for human life, and the fire are horrifying and extraordinarily cruel.