Zarahemla’s Age of War

Relocation to Manti

Alma 43:22

Seeing they are no match for the Nephites, the Lamanites retreat, and begin a march around the south end of the land of Zarahemla to Manti.

Behold, now it came to pass that they durst not come against the Nephites in the borders of Jershon; therefore they departed out of the land of Antionum into the wilderness, and took their journey round about in the wilderness, away by the head of the river Sidon, that they might come into the land of Manti and take possession of the land; for they did not suppose that the armies of Moroni would know whither they had gone.

Alma 43:23–24

As they begin their retreat, Moroni not only dispatches spies to track their course, but also consults the prophet Alma, who warns them to fortify the land of Manti.

But it came to pass, as soon as they had departed into the wilderness Moroni sent spies into the wilderness to watch their camp; and Moroni, also, knowing of the prophecies of Alma, sent certain men unto him, desiring him that he should inquire of the Lord whither the armies of the Nephites should go to defend themselves against the Lamanites.

And it came to pass that the word of the Lord came unto Alma, and Alma informed the messengers of Moroni, that the armies of the Lamanites were marching round about in the wilderness, that they might come over into the land of Manti, that they might commence an attack upon the weaker part of the people. And those messengers went and delivered the message unto Moroni.

Alma 43:25–26

Moroni leaves some troops in Jershon, and takes the rest of his army down to Manti, recruiting local soldiers on the way.

Now Moroni, leaving a part of his army in the land of Jershon, lest by any means a part of the Lamanites should come into that land and take possession of the city, took the remaining part of his army and marched over into the land of Manti.

And he caused that all the people in that quarter of the land should gather themselves together to battle against the Lamanites, to defend their lands and their country, their rights and their liberties; therefore they were prepared against the time of the coming of the Lamanites.

Alma 43:27–28

Moroni establishes his military presence on the west bank of the river Sidon in the land of Manti, and strategically places spies to watch for the Lamanites.

And it came to pass that Moroni caused that his army should be secreted in the valley which was near the bank of the river Sidon, which was on the west of the river Sidon in the wilderness. And Moroni placed spies round about, that he might know when the camp of the Lamanites should come.

Alma 43:29–30

Moroni knows that his military actions are justified by the causes he is fighting for and against.

And now, as Moroni knew the intention of the Lamanites, that it was their intention to destroy their brethren, or to subject them and bring them into bondage that they might establish a kingdom unto themselves over all the land; And he also knowing that it was the only desire of the Nephites to preserve their lands, and their liberty, and their church, therefore he thought it no sin that he should defend them by stratagem; therefore, he found by his spies which course the Lamanites were to take.

Alma 43:31–33

Moroni divides the army, takes one part to eastern sector near the hill Riplah, and sends the other part to the western side of the valley.

Therefore, he divided his army and brought a part over into the valley, and concealed them on the east, and on the south of the hill Riplah; And the remainder he concealed in the west valley, on the west of the river Sidon, and so down into the borders of the land Manti. And thus having placed his army according to his desire, he was prepared to meet them.