“The Church of God”

Brant Gardner

Culture: We have here the growing problem of cultural divisions stemming from doctrinal differences. Because Alma has authority over the churches, a power structure exists that is separate from the rest of the government. Even though Alma operates under Mosiah’s direction and authority, his very assignment separates government functions in a way that has never happened before. Because this division of powers is accepted, there is less community weight on dissenters to conform. If the church can be separate from society, that very separation undermines the assumption that the community is a whole, opening the door for social and religious opposition.

Second Witness: Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 3