“And Now the Astonishment of Alma Was So Great”

Brant Gardner

Textual: The similarity to Saul/Paul is clear in the physical incapacity that resulted from the visitation (see Acts 9:8). Indeed, just as with Saul, the only one so physically debilitated is Saul and Alma. The companions are fully functional and able to take them to assistance.

In Alma’s case the debilitation was even greater than Saul’s, for Saul was only blind. Alma was dumb, and so physically weak that he needed to be “carried helpless.” That he was laid before his father indicates that he was, at that time, too weak to even sit.

This physical weakness apparently came as a result of an internal spiritual struggle, which will be recounted later. Perhaps he was so preoccupied with the internal that his body was unable to cope with the external. Whatever the cause or explanation, it was a situation that was clearly related to his experience with the angel.

Multidimensional Commentary on the Book of Mormon