My favorite Book of Mormon Story begins in Helaman, chapter 7. I just started reading it again tonight, it is the story of a lone prophet among an influx of unrighteous, proud, and dangerous people. Nephi (the son of Helaman) was praying aloud in his garden about the deplorable state of the people when a crowd noticed and gathered around him. He called them to repentance, warning them that they will be destroyed unless they heed the word of the Lord.
At the end of his preaching, he told the people to go to the judgment seat and there they would find the Chief Judge dead by the hand of his brother. He reveals that these brothers were both members of the infamous Gadianton Robbers.
Immediately, 5 men run from where Nephi is preaching to the judgment seat to verify Nephi’s words, they agreed that if it were true, they would then believe in Nephi as a prophet. Sure enough, when they arrived, they found the Chief Judge lying in a pool of blood.
Meanwhile, the servants who discovered the murdered Chief Judge had gone out and told others about the murder. When a crowd of onlookers arrived, they found these 5 men and assumed they were the ones who had killed him and they were thrown into prison.
Later, at the burial of the Chief Judge, those who had been gathered at Nephi’s garden wondered what happened to the 5 who went to check – when it was discovered that they were the same 5, they were set free. But the people were now suspicious of Nephi, claiming that he was in league with the murderers and Nephi was a false prophet trying to gain power. So they brought him in for questioning. But Nephi was firm, and testified to his accusers that the Lord will destroy this people if they will not repent. Then Nephi gives them further proof, he tells them that if they go to the brother of the Chief Judge and accuse him, they will find blood on his cloak and he would confess.
And they did.
And he did.
And many believed that Nephi was a prophet of God.
I love how dramatic this story is, it reads just as shocking as any blockbuster movie or thriller novel. It shows how powerful prophets can be, when the situation demands it and the trust God gives his prophets. It shows how fickle groups of people can be and warns against governments run by evil and corrupt men/women.