“All Who Shall Seek to Slay Them Because of Power and Secret Combinations”

Brant Gardner

The felling of the tree became a symbol of the fall of “all who shall seek to slay [the Nephites] because of the power and secret combinations.” The general sentiment that the felling of the tree would be symbolic of the fall of an enemy is understandable, but this particular chant is very interesting in that it connects the curse specifically to the “secret combinations.” Of course this is appropriate in that Zemnarihah was a Gadianton, but it is unusual in that the Nephites had recently accepted Gadianton rulers. It is probable that in this case we have the faithful Nephites who had been believers in the gospel even when their lives were threatened. They, like Mormon, would see the Gadiantons as a particularly dangerous threat to them as a people.

Multidimensional Commentary on the Book of Mormon