Friday Forum: Alma 31:27-28 “We are a Chosen People, While Others Perish”

Discuss Alma 31:27-28
Bloom County ears
27Behold, O God, they cry unto thee, and yet their hearts are swallowed up in their pride. Behold, O God, they cry unto thee with their mouths, while they are puffed up, even to greatness, with the vain things of the world.

28 Behold, O my God, their costly apparel, and their ringlets, and their bracelets, and their ornaments of gold, and all their precious things which they are ornamented with; and behold, their hearts are set upon them, and yet they cry unto thee and say—We thank thee, O God, for we are a chosen people unto thee, while others shall perish.


This scripture is Alma the Younger  relating to the Lord the behavior of the Zoromites.  The manner of the Zoromites on the surface resembles the message  given in the Doctrine and Covenants 1:30:

30 And also those to whom these commandments were given, might have power to lay the foundation of this church, and to bring it forth out of obscurity and out of darkness, the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth, with which I, the Lord, am well pleased, speaking unto the church collectively and not individually—

My question to M* readers is,  how do we appear not to be as vain as the Zoromites, while boldly, yet humbly  proclaim the gospel of salvation?

Thoughts anyone?    If so, please do tell.

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About JA Benson

Joanna entered the world as a BYU baby. Continuing family tradition, she graduated BYU with a degree in Elementary Education and taught for several years. Growing up in Salt Lake County, her favorite childhood hobbies were visiting cemeteries and eavesdropping on adult conversations. Her ancestral DNA is multi-ethnic and she is Mormon pioneer stock on every familial line. Joanna resides in the Southeastern USA with her five children ranging in age from 8 to 24. Her husband passed away in 2009. She is an avid reader and a student of history. Her current intellectual obsession is Sephardic Jewish history, influence and genealogy. She served as a board member for her local chapter of Families with Children from China. She is the author of “DNA Mormons?” Summer Sunstone 2007 http://www.bycommonconsent.com/2007/04/dna-mormons/ and “Becoming Hong Mei`s Mother” in the Winter Sunstone 2009 http://theredbrickstore.com/sunstone/becoming-hong-meis-mother/.

4 thoughts on “Friday Forum: Alma 31:27-28 “We are a Chosen People, While Others Perish”

  1. From President McKay from an address given to the Brigham Young University Student Body January 16, 1963.

    As I have toured many missions in the past two decades and have visited with the young missionaries, one question, more than any other, has been asked me. They have come to grips with realities, have met almost insurmountable difficulties and stiff opposition. Dealing now with the supernatural and with the intangibles, they realize that the things of men are understood by the spirit of men, but the things of God cannot be understood except by the spirit of God. They know that spirituality comes through humility, and they ask, “How can I acquire humility?” …

    Humility is gracious, quiet, serene, not pompous, spectacular, nor histrionic. It is subdued, kindly, and understanding — not crude, blatant, loud, or ugly. Humility is not just a man or a woman, but a perfect gentleman and a gentlelady. It never struts nor swaggers. Its faithful, quiet works will be the badge of its own accomplishments. It never sets itself in the center of the stage, leaving all others in supporting roles. Humility is never accusing nor contentious.

  2. Whoops! Spencer W. Kimball not David O. McKay.

    What ere thou art, get thy attribution right.

  3. Thank you Floyd for your quote. I like this story from James Talmadge

    The Parable of Two Lamps
    By James E. Talmadge

    Among the material things of the past—things that I treasure for sweet memory’s sake and because of pleasant association in bygone days—is a lamp. …

    The lamp of which I speak, the student lamp of my school and college days, was one of the best of its kind. I had bought it with hard-earned savings; it was counted among my most cherished possessions. …

    One summer evening I sat musing studiously and withal restfully in the open air outside the door of the room in which I lodged and studied. A stranger approached. I noticed that he carried a satchel. He was affable and entertaining. I brought another chair from within, and we chatted together till the twilight had deepened into dusk, the dusk into darkness.

    Then he said: “You are a student and doubtless have much work to do of nights. What kind of lamp do you use?” And without waiting for a reply, he continued, “I have a superior kind of lamp I should like to show you, a lamp designed and constructed according to the latest achievements of applied science, far surpassing anything heretofore produced as a means of artificial lighting.”

    I replied with confidence, and I confess, not without some exultation: “My friend, I have a lamp, one that has been tested and proved. It has been to me a companion through many a long night. It is an Argand lamp, and one of the best. I have trimmed and cleaned it today; it is ready for the lighting. Step inside; I will show you my lamp; then you may tell me whether yours can possibly be better.”

    We entered my study room, and with a feeling which I assume is akin to that of the athlete about to enter a contest with one whom he regards as a pitiably inferior opponent, I put the match to my well-trimmed Argand.

    My visitor was voluble in his praise. It was the best lamp of its kind, he said. He averred that he had never seen a lamp in better trim. He turned the wick up and down and pronounced the adjustment perfect. He declared that never before had he realized how satisfactory a student lamp could be.

    I liked the man; he seemed to me wise, and he assuredly was ingratiating. “Love me, love my lamp,” I thought, mentally paraphrasing a common expression of the period.

    “Now,” said he, “with your permission I’ll light my lamp.” He took from his satchel a lamp then known as the “Rochester.” It had a chimney which, compared with mine, was as a factory smokestack alongside a house flue. Its hollow wick was wide enough to admit my four fingers. Its light made bright the remotest corner of my room. In its brilliant blaze my own little Argand wick burned a weak, pale yellow. Until that moment of convincing demonstration, I had never known the dim obscurity in which I had lived and labored, studied and struggled.

    “I’ll buy your lamp,” said I; “you need neither explain nor argue further.” I took my new acquisition to the laboratory that same night and determined its capacity. It turned at over 48 candlepower—fully four times the intensity of my student lamp.

    Two days after purchasing, I met the lamp peddler on the street about noontime. To my inquiry he replied that business was good; the demand for his lamps was greater than the factory supply. “But,” said I, “you are not working today?” His rejoinder was a lesson. “Do you think that I would be so foolish as to go around trying to sell lamps in the daytime? Would you have bought one if I had lighted it for you when the sun was shining? I chose the time to show the superiority of my lamp over yours, and you were eager to own the better one I offered, were you not?”

    Such is the story. Now consider the application of a part, a very small part, thereof.

    “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” [Matt. 5:16].

    The man who would sell me a lamp did not disparage mine. He placed his greater light alongside my feebler flame, and I hasted to obtain the better.

    The missionary servants of the Church of Jesus Christ today are sent forth, not to assail or ridicule the beliefs of men, but to set before the world a superior light, by which the smoky dimness of the flickering flames of man-made creeds shall be apparent. The work of the Church is constructive, not destructive.

    As to the further meaning of the parable, let him that hath eyes and a heart see and understand.

  4. What I like about the Kimball and Talmadge quotes, the right way is patience and humility, not boastful pride. I do not think the human soul responds well to braggarts.

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