“The Queen is Raised by Abish the Lamanite Woman”

Monte S. Nyman

Once more, contention arises after the miraculous protection of the Lord’s prophet (v. 22). The same old arguments, justifications, and rationalizations are given (vv. 25–28). Abish, the woman servant is again a servant in the hands of the Lord, a truly effective missionary although not on an official mission for the church. Her experience is an example of how every member can and should be a missionary. Perhaps feeling or wondering if she had acted in accordance with God’s will, she did what she could and the Lord came to her rescue. She took the queen by the hand, and the queen arose (v. 29).

Again, the spirit of prophecy is given. The queen bears testimony of Jesus and his salvation (v. 29, see Revelation 19:10). We also witness the spirit of revelation, which is the product of the fasting and prayers of Ammon and his brethren (see Alma 17:3). Although the words of the queen were not understood, there was probably someone who received the message. When someone is given the gift of speaking in tongues, which the queen apparently received, there is usually someone else who is given the interpretation of tongues. “And again, it is given to some to speak with tongues; And to another is given the interpretation of tongues” (D&C 46:24–25). The Prophet Joseph Smith admonished: “do not speak in tongues except there be an interpreter present” ( TPJS, 247).

After the queen raised up her husband by taking his hand (v. 30), he became a missionary (Alma 19:31–32), as did the servants of the king who had fallen. These servants bore testimony of their change of heart, having no desire to do evil (v. 33). A change of heart is a major characteristic of a born again person (see Mosiah 5:2). The record of their spiritual experience of their conversing with angels is left for further enlightenment through the unabridged account to come later (see 3 Nephi 26:6–12). That the rebirth experience was completed by a baptism of water is not recorded, but must be assumed by the fact that those who believed were baptized (Alma 19:35).

Book of Mormon Commentary: The Record of Alma