“Murders and Sins We Have Committed Against Them”

Brant Gardner

Lamoni’s brother, King Anti-Nephi-Lehi, responds by protesting that the Nephites will also “destroy” them because of the “many murders and sins we have committed against them.” The “sins against them” probably includes the repetitive hostilities between the two peoples. And presumably the “many murders” are the religiously sanctioned human sacrifices that the Anti-Nephi-Lehies had earlier espoused and which had made their repentance so difficult. (See commentary accompanying Alma 24:9–11.) Even though the actual number of male Anti-Nephi-Lehies who had participated in raids or battles against the Nephites must have been comparatively small, the king assumes that the Nephites would condemn the whole people. The king was realistically concerned that the Nephites would reject a people who had sacrificed captured Nephites to their pagan gods.

Second Witness: Analytical & Contextual Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 4