An angel played a pivotal role in the transformative experience of Alma the Younger as recorded in the Book of Mormon. Initially, Alma the Younger, along with the sons of Mosiah, actively sought to destroy the Church of God. However, divine intervention took place when an angel of the Lord appeared to Alma, as recounted in Mosiah 27:11, where the angel descended in a cloud with a voice like thunder, shaking the earth beneath them. This angel announced that God had heard the fervent prayers of Alma’s father and was sent to bring Alma to the knowledge of the truth, urging him to change his ways (Mosiah 27:14).
The angel conveyed messages of significant doctrinal importance to Alma. In one instance, the angel made known to Alma the state of the soul between death and the resurrection (Alma 40:11). This instruction provided Alma with insight into the plan of salvation and the state of spirits in the afterlife. The angel also appeared to Alma amid sorrows and trials, particularly during his troubled time in Ammonihah, and commanded him to return to the city and continue his ministry there, affirming his faithfulness in keeping the commandments of God from the reception of his first message (Alma 8:15-16). This bolstered Alma’s resolve to carry out God’s work, despite previous opposition in that area.
Importantly, the angel also spoke words that instilled fear and awe in Alma, causing him to fall to the earth. Still, the message was clear—Alma was to cease his destructive crusade against the church (Alma 36:6-11). Following this heavenly encounter, Alma was transformed and began vigorously to preach the word of God. He recounted seeing an angel face to face, which was crucial in bringing about his repentance and subsequent commitment to spread the Gospel (Alma 38:7).
The appearance of the angel to Alma and others served not only as a catalyst for change in their lives but also as a testament to the power and mercy of God, His awareness of individual circumstances, and His willingness to reach out to His children through divine messengers. The ministry of this angel had lasting effects, as Alma and those with him began to teach the truths revealed by the angel, enduring persecution yet pressing forward with faith (Mosiah 27:32). The angelic visitations to Alma underscored the significance of repentance, obedience, and the profound impact of divine intervention in the lives of individuals prepared to receive it.