Amulon must have been the servant of Satan, for the evil spirit teacheth not a man to pray, but teacheth him that he must not pray (2 Nephi 32:8). Amulon is going one step further than teaching men not to pray. He is forbidding it by commandment. This is designed as a punishment but it doesn’t work, for the Lord knows all the thoughts and intents of the heart (Alma 18:32), and the people did pour out their hearts to him.
Daniel of old was placed in a similar position as the princes of Babylon plotted his death. They convinced king Darius to make a decree that anyone found calling upon God should be cast into the lion’s den. Daniel, of course, was caught red handed in the dreadful act of prayer, and the princes demanded his death. This plan, like Amulon’s, didn’t work. Daniel was preserved, but the princes of Babylon were cast into the den of lions…and the lions had the mastery of them, and brake all their bones in pieces (Dan 6:4-24).