Spiritual Exhaustion

K. Douglas Bassett

JS-H. 1:20; 1 Ne. 1:7; 17:47; 19:20; Mosiah 27:19; Moses 1:9-10; Dan. 10:8; D&C 324-325 Student Manual, pp.158-159

“It appears that a trance is a state in which the body and its functions become quiescent in order that the full powers of the Spirit may be centered on the revelations of heaven. Freed from the fetters of a mortal body, a man’s spirit can be ushered into the divine presence; it can hear what otherwise could not be heard and see what otherwise could not be seen—even the visions of eternity and even the Almighty himself… . It is of interest that the false prophet Shemaiah wrote to the priest Zephaniah, charging him to keep the temple a house of order by putting the mad prophets in prison and in stocks. His reference to mad prophets is understood to have been directed to those prophets who claimed authority through some ecstasy or trance. His purpose in so doing was to have the prophet Jeremiah imprisoned, it being well-known that Jeremiah made claim to such experiences. (See Jeremiah 29:26-27). The story of Ammon and Lamoni affirms religious trances as a legitimate revelatory device. Lamoni, as already noted, came forth from his trance testifying that he had seen the Redeemer and then prophesied relative to the Savior’s birth and the necessity of all mankind believing on his name. The testimony of his servants was that while they were in this state of physical insensibility, angels instructed them in the principles of salvation and their obligation to live righteously. Indeed, they experienced a change of heart and no longer had a desire to do evil. Such is the state in which the power of God overcomes the ‘natural frame’ and one is ‘carried away in God.’” (R. Millet and J. F. McConkie, Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, 3:140-141)

Latter-Day Commentary on the Book of Mormon