“Now When the Lamanites Saw This They Did Forbear from Slaying Them”

George Reynolds, Janne M. Sjodahl

When the attacking Lamanites saw that the Anti-Nephi-Lehites offered no resistance to their well-planned atrocities, and also that the Christian Saints and themselves, too, were the victims of a hatred which was stirred up by renegade Nephites, they began to inquire of themselves and of each other, "What manner of carrying on is this that leads men to abjure even the very thought of reprisals?" Time and time again, they saw their brethren submit to the ravages which they imposed, when to flee from it was the natural, ordinary thing to do. When the Lamanites struck a wellaimed blow, the Anti-Nephi-Lehites neither turned "to the right hand or to the left" to escape its deadly intent; herein the gleeful eyes of the Lamanites, with murder peering through them, beheld what they had never dreamed of, the Christian Saints "would lie down and perish," and not only that, but they would praise "God even in the very act of perishing under the sword."

The astonished Lamanites, quite undone by such unprecedented courage and self-sacrifice, held back from further slaughter. The things which their eyes beheld, scenes by them never before witnessed, contrasts so striking, that in wonderment they stopped the massacre of the unoffending Christians. What, at first, seemed weakness in the Anti-Nephi-Lehites, now proved to be the strength of abiding faith with which the Saints abounded. The Lamanites were amazed, then from utter bewilderment their thoughts turned to sorrow. Grief for their brethren who had perished at their hands was heard on every side, and their savage hearts welled up within them, "and they repented of the things which they had done."

Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 3