Alma 53: The 2,000 Stripling Soldiers

Book of Mormon Student Study Guide, (2000), 137–138

Elder Rex D. Pinegar, a member of the Seventy, said: “Those of you who have read the Book of Mormon are familiar with the story of the sons of Helaman. (See Alma 53:56–58.) When their fathers were converted to the gospel, the fathers covenanted with the Lord that they would never again take up arms. But eventually their homes were threatened by hostile armies to the extent that the fathers would have to choose to fight or die. It was then that the two thousand young men, not bound by the same covenant, volunteered to defend their parents and their homes” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1982, 34; or Ensign, Nov. 1982, 25). What can we learn from their faith and actions? President James E. Faust told the Aaronic Priesthood holders of the Church: “To me, you young men look like Helaman’s stripling warriors, ‘exceedingly valiant for courage, and also for strength and activity.’ Like them, we hope you are men who are ‘true at all times in whatsoever thing [you are] entrusted’” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1998, 57; or Ensign, May 1998, 43).


Understanding the Scriptures

Alma 53

Compel, compelled (vv. 1, 5, 15)Force
Breastwork of timbers (v. 4)Wooden wall
Employ (v. 7)Use
Intrigue (vv. 8–9)Secret plots
Dissensions (vv. 8–9)Disputes, rebellions
Valiant for courage (v. 20)Extremely brave
Soberness (v. 21)Seriousness
Stripling (v. 22)Young
stripling warriors and missionaries

Studying the Scriptures

Do two of the following activities (A–C) as you study Alma 53.

Activity A iconIdentify Solutions

The Nephite army had been victorious but later faced several problems.

  1. 1.

    Read Alma 53:1–7 and identify at least three problems the Nephites faced at that time.

  2. 2.

    Identify the solutions Captain Moroni found for each problem.

Activity B iconCompare Covenants

  1. 1.

    Compare the covenant made by the people of Ammon (see Alma 53:10–15) to the covenant made by their sons (see v. 17).

  2. 2.

    Write a paragraph that explains why it is important to keep covenants.

Activity C iconFind Similar Characteristics

Read Alma 53:20–21 and list the characteristics that the 2,000 stripling soldiers had and that our full-time missionaries are to have.