Because of Akish’s secret combinations, the kingdom is overthrown. Here is the cool part though, chapter 9 verse 3. The Lord is merciful unto Omer and his family. The Lord warns him in a dream to leave the land before he is killed. He departs the land with his family and travels many days. They pass by the hill Shim and where the Nephites will be destroyed (many years into the future) and continue eastward. They came to a place called Ablom, by the seashore, and that is where they pitched their tents. Everyone but Jared and his family.
Wow! Lots to talk about in this verse. Let’s start with the dream. How cool is that! It’s just like what happened, or rather, what would happen with Lehi years and years later! One thing I just realized was that not only does the Book of Mormon show how Satan works, it also shows how God works. God is a perfectly righteous being and perfectly true. Therefore predicable. That’s not a bad thing. One of the best compliments is to be told you are predictable. At least as far as being righteous. If a person can say I know how so and so is going to act because he always does it in such a caring, loving, and Savior-like way, that’s a high compliment. God being the ultimate example of this. How do we learn what he does? Through the Book of Mormon. We learn that when we are righteous and obedient, God immediately blesses us. God always does what is best for us. The reason I point all this out is because he warns people in dreams multiple times. This stands out to me as a testament that God does this because he has done it before.
Omer departs out of the land. What land is that? Cross reference verse 13 of the same chapter (9). The land of his inheritance. Who would he have inherited it from? Probably King Shule. They were in the land of Moron right?
The Hill Shim
They pass by the hill Shim. Cross reference Mormon 1:3. This is a very interesting tidbit. Read verse 1-3. Ammaron is the father of Mormon. He says that he has hid the records in the hill Shim. I think this “deposit box” would have been used for a long time since it was already made. I think it is a logical conclusion that the hill Shim is the hill Cumorah. However, if it is different from the hill Cumorah, which is very possible depending on who named the hill, Nephite or Jaredite. The next sentence makes me feel inclined that it was the hill Cumorah, or at least, very close to it. That reason being that this was where the Nephites were destroyed. That was where the last major battle took place in Nephite land, the hill Cumorah. BUT, it could have been two differnt hills. Which means there is another place the scriptures were stored!
Cross reference Mormon 6:2. Question answered! This reference is saying that the hill Cumorah was the place where the Nephites were destroyed. Taking this scripture into account, being that the hill Shim was nearby the place the place the Nephites were destroyed, meaning the hill Shim was another hill, albeit close by. It would be cool to go there and see if I could find the place where Ammoron hid the records.
After going east of the hill Shim, they arrive by the seashore. This means they were somewhere in New York. Wish I knew where exactly where they traveled. I love how it mentions that Omer brought everyone but the family of Jared. If you are unrighteous, you get left in the land of wickedness!
In-Fighting Among the Secret Combinations
Back in the city. Jared is annoited king over the people through his wickedness. And he gives Akish his daughter to wife. I wonder how this went down. The assassins go in to kill Omer but discover not only is he gone, but also his entire family as well. They tell Jared. He proclaims to the people Omer has been killed and proclaims himself heir. Or maybe he told the people Omer deserted them? Or did Akish, seeing that Omer disappeared, pull a huntsman (from Snow White) chop off someone else’s head or heart and try and pass it off as Omer’s? I don’t know. Cool to think about though. Still would make a wonderful movie.
Verse 5 of chapter 9 is quite gruesome. Akish becomes jealous that Jared has the throne and desires that his father-in-law be killed and beheaded. Using combinations and oaths of the ancients, he gets King Jared beheaded while in the act of giving audience to his people. Yuck! Imagine being a normal everyday citizen under a not so righteous king and you finally get an audience with him to ask a favor. While you are talking to him, two men come out from behind the throne and behead him. His body slumps to the floor as it falls off the throne and blood pours out everywhere. Nasty! And the person who did this is the very person who helped him get the throne! He even gave Akish his daughter! I wonder how the daughter of Jared felt about her husband killing her dad. If she was far enough down the path of wickedness and her heart was haredened enough, I would say she probably didn’t care too much. In fact, she probably wanted to be queen as much as Akish wanted to be king. This goes to show that brothers in wickedness are always expendable. Satan only makes you turn inward and worry about yourself. Everyone, including family, you are willing to give up in exchange for wordly things and self-indulgences. As a result, Akish and his wife gain the throne.
Akish, as king, becomes jealous of his son and throws him in prison! With little or no food until he dies! Akish was probably the first person to realize, “Whoa, look at recent history. All the sons are rebelling against their dads and overthrowing the kingdom.” If that is what he thought, in order to prevent his son from overthrowing him, it seems like a logical thing to do. Jealousy is not good. Look at what happened because of it. Again, Satan makes us turn inward. That inwardness is so contagious and engulfing that we would expend anyone, even our own sons.
The death of Akish’s son ignited anger in the family. At least in the son’s brother, Nimrah. He was angry with his father. He took a small number of people and fled out of the land to dwell with Omer. Few things I want to point out here. Do you think Nimrah had arguments with his family after his dad killed his brother? Do you think he was the only one in the family who objected? It says that he fled out of the land. Maybe the arguments got so bad that he was threatened with death? I don’t know. It would be sad. Whatever happened, having to leave your family and flee because you got angry at your dad because he killed your brother, would be hard.
The other thing I wanted to point out is that he went to Omer and his group. Last time I checked, Omer and his family snuck out secretly. How did he find out where Omer was? Did he have a friend who left with Omer who told him? Did his father know where Omer was and it was commmon knowledge or something else? I don’t know but he got there.
Flashback to Akish and his cohorts. He begets more and more sons and daughters. They all win the hearts of the people despite having oathed themselves to esoteric acts. How many people do you think are among us, government or otherwise, who win the hearts of the people but on the other hand do stuff to kill the people? Maybe not literally but figuratively in the sense that they undermine society. Also notice that the secret combinations that began with Akish, although still alive, are being propagated through his posterity. These are kids being brought up in secret combinations. Traditions of their fathers. Sad. The Akish family is responsible for all this! A thought popped into my head just now. On the eternal impact of sin. Akish started this secret combination with not that many people. Do you think he foresaw that all his children and possibly their children would be affected by him making ancient oaths with evil people? Don’t think so. Remember, sin blinds us to that eternal perspective. It blinds us to everyone but ourselves. And the object of Satan is to keep it that way. He doesn’t want you to take the blindness off. He wants you to enjoy yourself.
Massive Outbreak of Civil War
The people of Akish desire to get gain. Just as bloodthirsty for worldly things as Akish was for power. The sons of Akish gave them money and bribed them in order to draw them away. Then, a war erupted between the sons of Akish and Akish. It continued for many years until there were 30 people left. They left the city to live with Omer. Wow! The entire population was drawn into these wicked schemes set up among the Jaredites by Akish until a division occurred. Probably the same as earlier in the history of the people. It says that everyone desired to get gain. I think it is reasonable to say that the sons fought to take the kingdom away from their father. And probably in the process, began to fight amongst themselves in addition to their dad. Their dad, being king, and an unrighteous one at that, didn’t desire to lose power. He fought back. This brought about the blood bath of death. Thirty people! Can you imagine!? These are people that cover a lot of land! We are probably talking hundreds of thousands of people dead. This wasn’t an overnight skirmish or lukewarm disagreement. A war that lasted many years! Years! Brother vs. brother. Years of killing people all because everyone was drunken in their desire for power. Evidence is here that Satan does not just desire for people to be ensnared by temptation and addiction, but to be ensnared so much that they are destroyed. Either spiritually, or in this case, literally.
Civilazation Rises From the Ashes
As a result of this massacre, Omer is able to obtain the land of his inheritance again. I wonder if we have record of what went on while Omer was away from the land? If so, where are those records? I would like to read them.
Omer begins to be old and begets Emer. After Omer dies, two years into the reign of Emer, Emer reigns for another 62 years. The people become exceedingly rich and strong. The Lord’s curse upon the land is lifted.
Kings are good so long as they reign in righteousness and labor with they own hands. Emer seems like that kind of guy. If the king is good, the people followed. Emer set the example and the people followed. It is amazing what happens when an entire city turns itself around or is righteous. City of Enoch is a prime example. Enoch was righteous ruler and teacher and as a result of the people following suite, the city was taken up to heaven. King Benjamin, another good example of leading his people in righteousness to prosperity. Even Jonah with Ninevah. The entire city turned around and was spared a great destruction. The Lord also fulfills the American promise back then. Any inhabitant in America will prosper if they love God and serve him with their heart, might, mind and strength. But if they love not God and refuse to serve him, they will be cut off from the land and a curse will come upon them. I believe this applies on a personal, city, state, and national level.
Among the things the people prospered with were cureloms, cumons, and elephants, all of which were especially useful. No footnotes on what the first two animals were. Maybe names for other animals today. But if that was the case, why wouldn’t Joseph Smith just translate it as such? Maybe they were animals that are now extinct? Do you think Jaredites killed off all the elephants, cureloms, and cumons at the end of their existence? It would have definitely hurt them as a civilization if they were all killed. Elephants man! Can you believe it?! Elephants in America! Actual wild elephants!
Emer begat sons and daughters. He begats Coriantum and he is appointed king in his father’s place. Emer lives for four years after his son is appointed king. The land is in peace and Emer sees the son of righteousness’s day. He rejoiced and was glad. Emer dies in peace. Man, Emer was a good guy. What a better way to die? Having reigned for 62 years in righteousness, see Christ’s day, and die in peace, having passed the kingdom onto a good son (hopefully).
Good son he was. He walked in the steps of his father all his days. He went about doing good and administering unto the people. How wonderful it is to know that you have followed righteously in the footsteps of your father! Not your earthly per se, but your heavenly one! Knowing that you tried your best to do that which was good and lived your life as another testimony of Jesus Christ. When you return to him he can say, “Well done, son.”
Coriantum’s wife dies when she is 102. Coriantum dies when he is 142. I don’t know how long it’s been since the tower of Bable but already people’s lifespans have gone down significantly. People aren’t living to be 900 years anymore. Also, this is one of the few mentions of a wife in the Book of Mormon. We have Lamoni’s wife, Sariah, mention is made of the stripling warriors’ mothers and I think that’s it. Rarely do we get personal details like how long they lived. This is cool!
Family History Review and the Beginning of Heth’s Reign
Coriantum has Com who reigns in his stead. He reigns 49 years. No details on who he is. Com begets Heth. The people spread all over the face of the land. Remember, how we only had 30 people left? They joined Omer and his party. Omer and his group were probably of considerable size but nothing of the size that was destroyed in the city. Let’s review the family line real quick of Omer down to the present story.
Emer–64 years reigning (righteous)
Coriantum–around 80 years reigning (righteous)
Com–49 years reigning
So there is considerable peace in the land generally speaking for quite some time. Unfortunately, Heth is the end of that and embraces the secret plans of old to destroy his father, Com.
We’ll end there and pick up the story in two weeks. Thanks for reading!