If I asked ten people what the most significant word in the scriptures was, surely I’d hear about ten different answers. I couldn’t even guess what you’d share, and the possibilities are endless. But I’d bet that no one answered with the words “if”, “but”, “as”, or “and”. But can I make a case for “and”? Give me a couple paragraphs and see what you think.
Most Mormons have hear of Zeezrom from the Book of Mormon. He’s the one who argued with Alma and Amulek all through Alma 10-14. He’s remembered as the guy who was getting in the way of preaching. As briefly as we can, let’s just walk through a few highlights from Zeezrom’s life, and you’ll see the word “and” rise up as a champion word:
- Alma 10:31 Zeezrom is the leader of those who were verbally attacking Alma and Amulek. And he was good at it.
- Alma 11:21 Zeezrom is asking questions of Alma and Amulek, but his purpose is to wreck their efforts.
- Alma 11:46, 12:1 Zeezrom begins to “tremble” as his guilt settles in. He hasn’t changed, but he has recognized that he’s caught and wrong.
- Alma 12:7-8 Realizing that he has been on the wrong side of things, Zeezrom begins to “inquire diligently” regarding the kingdom of God. This is a good sign. A very good sign.
- Alma 14:6 Zeezrom recognizes that his poor actions have had a negative effect on others. This is another really good sign.
- Alma 14:7 Zeezrom desperately beings to try to fix things. He tries to convince others that Alma and Amulek weren’t wrong after all.
- Alma 15:3-12 Zeezrom declares faith in Christ, is healed of his sickness, enters the waters of baptism, and begins preaching the gospel
Helaman 5:41 Ok, at this point, Zeezrom isn’t around. He may be deceased. He may be retired. I don’t know. But he is mentioned in Helaman 5. Let me show you how:
And Aminadab said unto them: You must repent, and cry unto the voice, even until ye shall have faith in Christ, who was taught unto you by Alma, and Amulek, and Zeezrom; and when ye shall do this, the cloud of darkness shall be removed from overshadowing you. (Helaman 5:41)
Notice the word “and” in this verse? (You should…I underlined it and bolded it) It isn’t “Alma and Amulek versus Zeezrom any more. It is Alma, and Amulek, and Zeezrom. Zeezrom is grouped with the missionaries. He was on the list of those who taught faith in Christ. the word “and” links Zeezrom with other great, faithful, powerful people–people who are just like him.
Zeezrom had changed.
Anyone can. Your spouse can. Your children can. Your grandchildren can. You can. I can. One of the great gifts we have, and it must be part of being the offspring of Diety, is that we have the infinite capacity to change, grow, repent, and be reborn. Anyone. Everyone.
Don’t lose hope just yet. People can change. Zeezrom’s wife/mother/father/grandparent/children/friends/teachers must have been so thankful…