“The Destruction of Nearly All the People”

Monte S. Nyman

The sage of wicked kings and the overthrow of kingdoms continued. Keeping all the kingdoms in order is not necessary, but for those interested, Jared was the son of Omer. From Ether 8:1 through 9:15 is the account of Omer, the fifth generation king of the Jaredites, and his sons. Jared reigned while his father Omer was kept in captivity. Jared was murdered by Akish, a friend of Omer (see Ether 8:11). Akish was not in the family of the original Jared and his brother who came to the land of promise. Emer, who emerges as king in the stead of Omer, is a brother of Jared, but much younger (v. 14). Other than the first and the last generation of the thirty plus generations of the Jaredites in the book of Ether, there is more information about Emer and his family than any other generation. The length of this treatise was probably because of the introduction of secret combinations among them at this time, which eventually caused their destruction. Jared and Akish are thus a parallel with Kishkuman and Gadianton who introduced secret combinations among the Nephites, and eventually caused their destruction (see Helaman 2:11–14).

The near-destruction of all the people but thirty in the kingdom of Akish illustrates the principle taught by Mormon as he abridged the Nephite records. “But, behold, the judgments of God will overtake the wicked; and it is by the wicked that the wicked are punished; for it is the wicked that stir up the hearts of the children of men unto bloodshed” (Mormon 4:5). That principle is still being illustrated in the wars around the world in these latter days. As the Second Coming gets nearer, this principle will probably become more obvious.

Book of Mormon Commentary: I Mormon Make a Record