Nephite Refuge

Location for Nephite centralization

Nephite Refuge

The Nephite refuge refers to the designated area established by Lachoneus, the chief judge of the Nephites, for the purpose of defending against the Gadianton robbers. During a period of heightened threat from these robbers, Lachoneus, demonstrating foresight and strategic acumen, commanded his people to abandon their lands and consolidate in a central location for their collective safety. This area of gathering was strategically positioned between the land of Zarahemla and the land Bountiful, up to the line that divided Bountiful and the land Desolation (3 Nephi 3:23). The concept behind this move was to form a united front, wherein the Nephites could pool their resources, strengthen their defenses, and ensure mutual support during a time of crisis.

The gathering to the Nephite refuge had significant logistical and defensive implications. By concentrating the population and their resources, the Nephites effectively left the rest of their lands desolate, depriving the Gadianton robbers of resources and strategic advantages. The robbers found no spoils or unguarded settlements to raid, facing instead a fortified and prepared Nephite populace. This precautionary measure by the Nephites under Lachoneus’ directive contributed to the preservation of their society and stymied the immediate threats posed by their adversaries. The dynamics surrounding the Nephite refuge illustrate the Nephite’s capacity for collective action and resilience in the face of external aggression.


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