>>> Gary appropriately wrote:
>It was actually chapter 7 of Mormon. 

Thank you - I appreciate the correction. :)

>Captain Moroni DID clear the wilderness areas of Lamanites. 

I agree that Captain Moroni did clear the wilderness. However, he did so under the 
pretext of defending his people. I guess I should have reworded my sentence. I believe 
that God commanded him (or gave His approval) to clear out the east wilderness. Why? 
Because he was trying to preserve the liberties and lives of the Nephites. I don't 
think that it was necessarily a "war of aggression", but that doesn't really matter. 
See the reference to D&C 98 I have included below for more details on why this is the 

>We read in Helaman 6:
>37 And it came to pass that the Lamanites did hunt the band of robbers of
>Gadianton; and they did preach the word of God among the more wicked part
>of them, insomuch that this band of robbers was utterly destroyed from
>among the Lamanites.

>The righteous Lamanites hunted them. That suggests going into the
>territories of the Gadiantons.

I always believed that the Gadiantons were in the midst of the Lamanites. 
Additionally, if you look closely at how the Lamanites actually hunted the Gadiantons, 
they "preached the word of God among THE MORE WICKED PART OF THEM, insomuch that this 
band of robbers was utterly destroyed FROM AMONG THE LAMANITES." (emphasis added by 
me). I am sure that those that did not repent of their Gadianton ways were probably 
executed, but it appears that the more part of them repented because of the preaching 
of the work of God, and this is how the Gadiantons dwelling in the midst of the 
Lamanites were destroyed.

Notice also that the Lamanites did not go among the Nephites with their armies and 
attempt to destroy the Gadianton bands living in Nephite lands. At least, that is how 
the scriptures appear to be written.

>So the command to bury weapons of war has always been a condition given
>to the converted Lamanites, as a sign of their repentance. Those who had
>the covenant (Nephites/us), have never been told by God to bury our
>weapons. We've been commanded to seek peace with other nations, but
>defend against them. And when it comes to Gadianton Robbers, the
>righteous peoples in the BoM hunted them into extinction.

I appreciate these comments. Actually, I am grateful for all of them - I have never 
thought about the "burying their weapons of war" as a covenant only between the Lord 
and the Lamanites, although it makes sense to me.

I know that we are supposed to defend ourselves. However, I have a difficult time 
reconciling what we (meaning the United States) are currently doing in the world and 
the words given to us by the Savior through Joseph Smith in section 98 of the Doctrine 
and Covenants:

   23 Now, I speak unto you concerning your families—if men will smite you, or your 
families, once, and ye bear it patiently and revile not against them, neither seek 
revenge, ye shall be rewarded;

24 But if ye bear it not patiently, it shall be accounted unto you as being meted out 
as a just measure unto you.

25 And again, if your enemy shall smite you the second time, and you revile not 
against your enemy, and bear it patiently, your reward shall be an hundred fold.

26 And again, if he shall smite you the third time, and ye bear it patiently, your 
reward shall be doubled unto you four-fold;

27 And these three testimonies shall stand against your enemy if he repent not, and 
shall not be blotted out.

28 And now, verily I say unto you, if that enemy shall escape my vengeance, that he be 
not brought into judgment before me, then ye shall see to it that ye warn him in my 
name, that he come no more upon you, neither upon your family, even your children’s 
children unto the third and fourth generation.

29 And then, if he shall come upon you or your children, or your children’s children 
unto the third and fourth generation, I have delivered thine enemy into thine hands;

30 And then if thou wilt spare him, thou shalt be rewarded for thy righteousness; and 
also thy children and thy children’s children unto the third and fourth generation.

31 Nevertheless, thine enemy is in thine hands; and if thou rewardest him according to 
his works thou art justified; if he has sought thy life, and thy life is endangered by 
him, thine enemy is in thine hands and thou art justified.

32 Behold, this is the law I gave unto my servant Nephi, and thy fathers, Joseph, and 
Jacob, and Isaac, and Abraham, and all mine ancient prophets and apostles.

33 And again, this is the law that I gave unto mine ancients, that they should not go 
out unto battle against any nation, kindred, tongue, or people, save I, the Lord, 
commanded them.

34 And if any nation, tongue, or people should proclaim war against them, they should 
first lift a standard of peace unto that people, nation, or tongue;

35 And if that people did not accept the offering of peace, neither the second nor the 
third time, they should bring these testimonies before the Lord;

36 Then I, the Lord, would give unto them a commandment, and justify them in going out 
to battle against that nation, tongue, or people.

37 And I, the Lord, would fight their battles, and their children’s battles, and their 
children’s children’s, until they had avenged themselves on all their enemies, to the 
third and fourth generation.

38 Behold, this is an ensample unto all people, saith the Lord your God, for 
justification before me.

Personally, I don't think of myself as a dove, and I am definitely not a peacenik (did 
I spell that correctly?). However, I don't think that we are abiding by the law given 
above. And if we are not abiding by that law, how can we expect the Lord to fight our 
battles for us? Are we not then relying upon the arm of flesh to win this war?

Just some questions and thoughts I have been mulling over lately.


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