In this chapter, Amulek contends with Zeezrom, one of the most successful lawyers in the land of Ammonihah. They have a very memorable exchange. Zeezrom offers Amulek six onties of silver to deny the existence of a Supreme Being. I wondered what exactly that amount was and in my research found this:
At this juncture, a reader naturally asks, what are "six onties of silver" and how large was the offered bribe? It seems that the Nephite record keepers anticipated these sorts of questions from readers and therefore listed the relative values of the weights and measures used by the Nephites at that time to calculate wealth. Zeezrom's bribe was an impressive sum. A judge earned one onti of silver for seven days of work. Hence, six onties of silver would equal a judge's salary for 42 days of work; or if seven judges were involved in a case, enough to pay them all for a six-day trial. Zeezrom's six onties probably looked quite sizable, physically. If one has spent time in a village marketplace where merchants sell goods measured out by using old metal weights, one notices how bulky the weights themselves are. Because an onti of silver would purchase seven measures of barley in the marketplace (see Alma 11:6–7), it is safe to conclude that an onti represented a significant amount of silver in raw weight.
Weighing and Measuring in the Worlds of the Book of Mormon John W. WelchProvo, Utah: Maxwell Institute, 1999. Pp. 36–46
I found that very interesting and even helpful as I listened to their exchange throughout the chapter.
*What can we learn from Amulek's response to Zeezrom in vs. 26-27. How should we answer questions presented to us about the Gospel?
*Zeezrom's words really are cunning, aren't they? Amulek's response reminds me of Christ's temptation in the wilderness -- they both use scripture to rebuke their tempter. What can we learn from this?
*Verses 39-46 are some of the best about the ressurrection and judgement, don't you think? One thing I noticed this time is how Amulek's message was tailored specifically to his audience. Verse 44 must have shaken Zeezrom and the wicked judges right to the core. What can we learn about teaching by the Spirit from this chapter?
I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from The Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of that great book will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. The spirit of reverence will increase; mutual respect and consideration for each other will grow. The spirit of contention will depart. Parents will counsel their children in greater love and wisdom. Children will be more responsive and submissive to the counsel of their parents. Righteousness will increase. Faith, hope, and charity - the pure love of Christ - will abound in our homes and lives, bringing in their wake peace, joy, and happiness.
- President Marion G. Romney
- President Marion G. Romney