"Thus Alma describes his rise from his descent through the pain of change to being filled with the Holy Ghost, born again, and consumed by the desire to rescue others…Still, the transformation is not easy. He and the sons of Mosiah had been the ’very vilest of sinners.’ (Mosiah 28:4.) Their spiritual rebirth, though miraculously rapid, was not handed without price to them.
“The normal process of gradual repentance, remorse, and change was dramatically condensed - but so also was the pain. The record says, ’They suffered much anguish of soul because of their iniquities, suffering much and fearing that they should be cast off forever.’ (Mosiah 28:4.) But how remarkable the change from trying to destroy the souls of men to that acutely sensitive condition of being unable to ‘bear that any human soul should perish’ (Mosiah 28:3-4).” (M. Catherine Thomas, Church News, 7/26/96)
The process of being born again has been a subject of much discussion. The examples used in the scriptures are dramatic and should not be extrapolated to every member’s experience:
“Alma’s story is preserved in the scriptures because it is unusual and powerful. For virtually everyone in Alma’s day and ours, the process of being born again is quiet and unobtrusive, yet all conversion experiences ought to contain certain elements in common. ’We must be cautious,’ President Ezra Taft Benson has warned, ’as we discuss these remarkable examples. Though they are real and powerful, they are the exception more than the rule. For every Paul, for every Enos, and for every King Lamoni, there are hundreds and thousands of people who find the process of repentance much more subtle, much more imperceptible. Day by day they move closer to the Lord, little realizing they are building a godlike life.’ (”A Mighty Change of Heart,“ Ensign, October 1989, p. 5.)” (McConkie and Millet, Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, vol. 3, p. 268)