Alma 22:15-16 (#201)
Reflect on the king’s evolution of first being willing to give up half of his kingdom in order to spare his life, to eventually being willing to give up everything to obtain eternal life.
What would you be willing to give up to spare your own life? What are you willing to give up to obtain eternal life?
15 And it came to pass that after Aaron had expounded these things unto him, the king said: What shall I do that I may have this eternal life of which thou hast spoken? Yea, what shall I do that I may be born of God, having this wicked spirit rooted out of my breast, and receive his Spirit, that I may be filled with joy, that I may not be cast off at the last day? Behold, said he, I will give up all that I possess, yea, I will forsake my kingdom, that I may receive this great joy.
16 But Aaron said unto him: If thou desirest this thing, if thou wilt bow down before God, yea, if thou wilt repent of all thy sins, and will bow down before God, and call on his name in faith, believing that ye shall receive, then shalt thou receive the hope which thou desirest.
This is what the king said to Ammon after finding himself in this life-and-death situation: “If thou wilt spare me I will grant unto thee whatsoever thou wilt ask, even to half of the kingdom.”
So the king was willing to pay the price of one-half his kingdom in order to spare his own life…
Later on… Aaron was introduced to the king and had the privilege of teaching him the principles of the gospel… The teachings of Aaron inspired the king deeply.
The king’s response to Aaron’s teachings is found in verse 15 of Alma chapter 22: “What shall I do that I may have this eternal life of which thou hast spoken?… Behold, said he, I will give up all that I possess, yea, I will forsake my kingdom, that I may receive this great joy.”
Amazingly enough, in contrast to giving up one-half his kingdom to spare his life, the Lamanite king was now willing to give up his entire kingdom that he might receive the joy that comes from understanding, accepting, and living the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Elder Richard J. Maynes