strtoupper('“T')here Should Be an Equality Among All Men”

Mormon is not completely clear in describing Mosiah’s reaction to the problem of the persecutions. Clearly, Mosiah pronounces that such persecutions of believers must stop, but whether he similarly proscribed persecution by believers is less clear, though we certainly expect that he did. In any case, these legal restrictions had the purpose of restoring the kingdom’s harmony and singleness of purpose.

The last phrase of verse 3 is interesting. There is no reason to believe that it could not have carried the modern understanding of equality before the law. However, Mosiah is describing the people’s unity, not their legal rights. Given the social disruptions that continued, even after Benjamin’s attempt to unify the people, we would expect Mosiah to make a similar effort. Therefore, I read “equality” not as rights, but social standing. This is a call for social unity rather than fair laws.

Brant Gardner -

Brant Gardner

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