Alma’s Words to his Son Corianton

The Concept of “Restoration”

Alma 41:1–2

The plan of restoration is required by God’s justice; the spirit is restored to the body.

And now, my son, I have somewhat to say concerning the restoration of which has been spoken; for behold, some have wrested the scriptures, and have gone far astray because of this thing. And I perceive that thy mind has been worried also concerning this thing. But behold, I will explain it unto thee. I say unto thee, my son, that the plan of restoration is requisite with the justice of God; for it is requisite that all things should be restored to their proper order. Behold, it is requisite and just, according to the power and resurrection of Christ, that the soul of man should be restored to its body, and that every part of the body should be restored to itself.

Alma 41:3–4

The plan of restoration also applies in the judgment: good is rewarded with good, evil is rewarded will evil.

And it is requisite with the justice of God that men should be judged according to their works; and if their works were good in this life, and the desires of their hearts were good, that they should also, at the last day, be restored unto that which is good. And if their works are evil they shall be restored unto them for evil. Therefore, all things shall be restored to their proper order, every thing to its natural frame—mortality raised to immortality, corruption to incorruption—raised to endless happiness to inherit the kingdom of God, or to endless misery to inherit the kingdom of the devil, the one on one hand, the other on the other—

Alma 41:5–8

Desires and inclinations are also restored unto people.

The one raised to happiness according to his desires of happiness, or good according to his desires of good; and the other to evil according to his desires of evil; for as he has desired to do evil all the day long even so shall he have his reward of evil when the night cometh. And so it is on the other hand. If he hath repented of his sins, and desired righteousness until the end of his days, even so he shall be rewarded unto righteousness.

These are they that are redeemed of the Lord; yea, these are they that are taken out, that are delivered from that endless night of darkness; and thus they stand or fall; for behold, they are their own judges, whether to do good or do evil. Now, the decrees of God are unalterable; therefore, the way is prepared that whosoever will may walk therein and be saved.

Alma 41:9–10

Restoration does not mean going from a state of wickedness to a state of happiness.

And now behold, my son, do not risk one more offense against your God upon those points of doctrine, which ye have hitherto risked to commit sin. Do not suppose, because it has been spoken concerning restoration, that ye shall be restored from sin to happiness. Behold, I say unto you, wickedness never was happiness.

Alma 41:11–12

All of mankind is in a fallen and sinful state; restoration does not mean bringing them into an opposite state.

And now, my son, all men that are in a state of nature, or I would say, in a carnal state, are in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity; they are without God in the world, and they have gone contrary to the nature of God; therefore, they are in a state contrary to the nature of happiness. And now behold, is the meaning of the word restoration to take a thing of a natural state and place it in an unnatural state, or to place it in a state opposite to its nature?

Alma 41:13

Restoration implies that action is matched with reaction.

O, my son, this is not the case;

But the meaning of the word restoration
is to bring back again evil for evil,
or carnal for carnal,
or devilish for devilish—

Good for that which is good.

Righteous for that which is righteous.

Just for that which is just.

Merciful for that which is merciful.

Alma 41:14

Corianton will reap what he sows, so Alma admonishes him to be christlike.

Therefore, my son,
see that you are merciful unto your brethren;
deal justly,
judge righteously,
and do good continually.

And if ye do all these things then shall ye receive your reward.

Yea, ye shall have mercy restored unto you again.

Ye shall have justice restored unto you again;
ye shall have a righteous judgment restored unto you again;
and ye shall have good rewarded unto you again.

Alma 41:15

The concept of restoration brings no benefits to unrepentant sinners.

For that which ye do send out shall return unto you again, and be restored; therefore, the word restoration more fully condemneth the sinner, and justifieth him not at all.