Alma 5:45-47 (#177)
Why do you think Alma focused on the role the Spirit, in combination with his fasting and prayer, played in his conversion? As opposed to focusing on the vision of an angel he witnessed?
45 And this is not all. Do ye not suppose that I know of these things myself? Behold, I testify unto you that I do know that these things whereof I have spoken are true. And how do ye suppose that I know of their surety?
46 Behold, I say unto you they are made known unto me by the Holy Spirit of God. Behold, I have fasted and prayed many days that I might know these things of myself. And now I do know of myself that they are true; for the Lord God hath made them manifest unto me by his Holy Spirit; and this is the spirit of revelation which is in me.
47 And moreover, I say unto you that it has thus been revealed unto me, that the words which have been spoken by our fathers are true, even so according to the spirit of prophecy which is in me, which is also by the manifestation of the Spirit of God.
Alma the Younger had a personal experience with ministering angels…
[He] was so overcome by this experience that he fainted and had to be carried to his father. Only after his father and others had fasted and prayed for two days was Alma restored to full health and strength. He then stood up and declared, “I have repented of my sins, and have been redeemed of the Lord; behold I am born of the Spirit.” Alma went on to become one of the greatest missionaries in the Book of Mormon. Yet in all his many years of missionary service, he never spoke of the angel’s visit. Instead, he chose to testify that the truth had been made known to him by the Holy Spirit of God.
To be instructed by an angel would be a great blessing. However, as Alma taught us, his final and lasting conversion came only after he had “fasted and prayed many days.” His complete conversion came from the Holy Ghost, which is available to all of us if we are worthy.
President James E. Faust