Separation of Church and State

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I was reading in Mosiah 26 last week, and I came across something I had read many times before, but which I found interesting nonetheless. Alma and his people along with Limhi and his people have all be joined together with Mosiah and his people in Zarahemla. In the previous chapter, Mosiah had given Alma the authority to organise the church throughout the land of Zarahemla.

There were a number of people in Zarahemla who would to join the Church and who made it difficult for members of the Church to remain committed to the religious convictions. Naturally, Alma, as a spiritual leader, was disturbed by this growing phenomenon. Not knowing how to handle it, he approached King Mosiah.

King Mosiah?¢‚Ǩ‚Ñ¢s response was fundamentally that he had given Alma authority of the Church and this was a spiritual matter. King Mosiah dealt with political and secular matters. He thus told Alma to find a way to deal with it. Certainly, these people were doing something that was hard on the believers, but they broke no laws, so why should Mosiah do anything?

There seems to be parallel to our day. Sometimes, we are quick to want to prosecute people if they do something that is against the teachings of church, even if that which they do is legal. Why is it that some members of the Church are so apt to want Church ad State not to be separate?

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