July 24th, 2012

Modern-Day Gadiantonism: Government by the Laws of Wickedness

For all its many spiritual benefits, the Book of Mormon is ultimately a historical record of two separate civilizations on the American continent. Tracing the rise and fall of the Nephite and Jaredite societies, the book exposes and emphasizes with clarity the cause of their demise.

Moroni, the last recordkeeper who in many ways summarized the book’s contents and teachings, wrote at length regarding the group responsible, labeling them as a “secret combination” of individuals seeking to “gain power, and to murder, and to plunder, and to lie, and to commit all manner of wickedness and whoredoms.” Such conspiring groups, Moroni wrote, were directly responsible for causing the destruction of both societies.

This book is not just for historical reference, of course—it is offered as a book of scripture, with application to our day. “The Book of Mormon narrative is a chronicle of nations long since gone,” said President Hinckley. “But in its descriptions of the problems of today’s society, it is as current as the morning newspaper and much more definitive, inspired, and inspiring concerning the solutions of those problems.” It is with this application in mind that Moroni, once having summarized the success of these secret combinations, begins to offer counsel:

Wherefore, O ye Gentiles, it is wisdom in God that these things should be shown unto you, that thereby ye may repent of your sins, and suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you, which are built up to get power and gain—and the work, yea, even the work of destruction come upon you, yea, even the sword of the justice of the Eternal God shall fall upon you, to your overthrow and destruction if ye shall suffer these things to be.

Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up.

For it cometh to pass that whoso buildeth it up seeketh to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries; and it bringeth to pass the destruction of all people, for it is built up by the devil, who is the father of all lies; even that same liar who beguiled our first parents, yea, even that same liar who hath caused man to commit murder from the beginning; who hath hardened the hearts of men that they have murdered the prophets, and stoned them, and cast them out from the beginning.

According to Moroni, we are directly commanded by God to ensure that similar secret combinations do not overthrow our own society. If this is the case, then two questions arise which must be answered: 1) what kind of people participate in secret combinations, and 2) what do secret combinations do?

A common belief is that secret combinations are gang members, people in the mafia, or cave-dwelling terrorists half a world away. These, however, do not meet the basic criteria for those combining in the Book of Mormon to bring down society. The most basic benchmark, other than the obvious lust for power and riches, is to overthrow the government. This is achieved not by violent revolution or external attacks, but by internal infestation. It was precisely because these combinations were able to “obtain the sole management of the government” that they were successful in their efforts.

With this criteria in place, it becomes evident that gang members or terrorists do not apply. Those involved in secret combinations of this sort are far more difficult for many people to label as such, for they look like them. They speak the same language, wear the same attire, and like the wolf in sheep’s clothing, mask themselves so well that they remain largely undetected. President Hinckley observed how these people gained power in ancient days, offering the clue as to who in our day might be so classified:

The people succumbed to the wiles of ambitious and scheming leaders who oppressed them with burdensome taxes, who lulled them with hollow promises, who countenanced and even encouraged loose and lascivious living. These evil schemers led the people into terrible wars that resulted in the death of millions and the final and total extinction of two great civilizations in two different eras.

This leads into the answer for the second question regarding what secret combinations do. The answer to this question also holds the key regarding how we can discharge the divine obligation to “suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you.” By obtaining positions of political power, those in secret combinations are able to ensure that their like-minded cohorts “should not suffer for their murders, and their plunderings, and their stealings.” Secret combinations don’t take down the government by attacking it from the sidelines—they do it by gutting it from within.

Those involved in this effort work to circumvent “the laws of their country” to instead carry on their nefarious deeds “according to the laws of their wickedness.” They “let[] the guilty and the wicked go unpunished because of their money” and are “held in office at the head of government, to rule and do according to their wills.”

Of course, the infestation of secret combinations into the Nephite and Jaredite societies would not have been successful without the toleration and support of the people themselves. Thus we read that a propaganda campaign was carried out to “seduce[] the more part of the righteous until they had come down to believe in their works and partake of their spoils, and to join with them in their secret murders and combinations.”

In other words, the people welcomed with open arms, and elected to various offices of power, those individuals who enabled them in their wickedness and protected them in their evil desires. Not wishing to be governed by God’s law and be held accountable for their wickedness, they embraced a corrupt system that justified them in their deviant behavior and sanctioned their wickedness in law.

The parallels to draw from these patterns are numerous and compelling. Consider one of the most recent examples, the Operation Fast and Furious scandal. This government program entailed the sale and delivery of guns to Mexican gun traffickers and drug cartels, ostensibly to track them to ferret out the individuals engaged in the trafficking. These guns have been used in a number of murders, including that of a U.S. Border Patrol agent, Brian Terry.

Amidst the eruption about who knew what and when, those at the highest levels of government have resisted investigation and dug in their heels. They have likewise promoted their own “laws of wickedness,” mandating their subordinates to not divulge any damaging information to Congress or news agencies, effectively closing ranks around those who are responsible for providing the guns used in these murders.

The financial bailouts in recent years are also an excellent example of this satanic behavior, wherein those who are guilty “go unpunished.” The institutions responsible for assuming risky debt, deemed “too big to fail” by their cohorts in this combination, were given stolen property from taxpayers to stave off their demise and instead guarantee their success. Rather than facing the consequences of their poor decisions and evil actions, they were let off the hook by like-minded politicians who have obtained “the sole management of the government.”

Any similar situation where the (moral, constitutional) laws of the country are rejected and replaced with the laws of wickedness is an example of modern-day gadiantonism. This is seen with social welfare laws stealing property from some to give to others, domestic surveillance in direct violation of the fourth amendment, TSA checkpoints which do the same, free speech restrictions which suppress dissent, Federal Reserve loans where one’s savings is deflated to help bankers amass more wealth, and on and on.

Moroni’s emphasis of what secret combinations did to two previous societies was not meant as a mere historical curiosity, but a warning and pattern for a future time—our time. “It is wisdom in God that these things should be shown you,” he wrote, to “suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you, which are built up to get power and gain.”

Thus we are commanded by God that when (not if) we see them in power, “that [we] shall awake to a sense of [our] awful situation.” Recognition of evil is the first step in counteracting it; unfortunately, too many people fail to realize that past, prophetic warnings are openly being fulfilled in our day.

Moroni concludes his warning by noting that he was “commanded to write these things that evil may be done away.” It is up to us to do away with evil—including and especially the evil that has become entrenched within the government, substituting the laws of our country for the laws of wickedness.

Are you doing your part?

47 Responses to “Modern-Day Gadiantonism: Government by the Laws of Wickedness”

  1. Dave P.
    July 24, 2012 at 10:32 am #

    One thing to remember: The Book of Mormon warned that modern-day Gadiantons would infiltrate every aspect of society, INCLUDING THE RESTORED CHURCH, because that’s who the Book was written to, for and about. Look for evidence on how the church today has fulfilled 2 Nephi 28 and Mormon 8 then you’ll see why 2 Nephi 3 makes sense in talking about a second restoration.

  2. Curtis
    July 24, 2012 at 11:01 am #

    You ask if I am doing my part? The best thing to do to these Gadianton types and their followers is illustrated well in the book of Helaman:

    37 And it came to pass that the Lamanites did hunt the band of robbers of Gadianton; and they did preach the word of God among the more wicked part of them, insomuch that this band of robbers was utterly destroyed from among the Lamanites. (Book of Mormon, Helaman, Chapter 6)

    Missionary work is the key to taking away Satan’s influence and replacing it with righteousness.

  3. Connor
    July 24, 2012 at 11:05 am #

    I don’t disagree at all, but mere missionary work is insufficient, in my view, to the extent that by “missionary work” you mean getting people to accept the gospel and be baptized.

    I say this because there are plenty of members of the Church who are supporting the gadiantons. So I suppose you could argue that missionary work is needed (badly!) even within our own ranks.

  4. DBreit1
    July 24, 2012 at 11:33 am #

    Great article, Connor.
    Dave P. The restoration spoken of in 2 Nephi 3 is the Restoration of the Gospel. There is no second restoration.
    The Book of Mormon is written to all the world, just like the Bible. It’s message and prophecies are for and about everyone – whether they read it or not, whether the Gospel is preached in their lands or not.
    Nearly every single instance of the world Gentiles throughout the BofM if taken in context (look at the surrounding verses in the chapter) refers primarily to the Western nations (Christendom), and the chapters you cite refer specifically to both present day Catholic & Protestant churches (including Televangelists), and especially to the United States AS A WHOLE. It is THOSE entities that oppress the poor and are puffed up above the world, denying miracles, the power of God, etc…NOT the LDS Church
    If you are really want to force a comparison from the BofM to the present day Church, then I suggest you look up every reference to “dissent” and “dissenters” and see how often those having issues with Nephite Church leadership appear, and the damage they did…and then compare that to today.
    Also, study 3 Nephi 6-7 and see how the prophets (equivalent would be today’s apostles) were secretly executed by lawyers and those who were priests and high priests (local leaders – Bishops and Stake Presidents perhaps) – thankfully this has not YET come to pass.
    Note that 3 Nephi 6: 11 states: “For there were many merchants in the land, and also many lawyers, and many officers” (officers being government officials).
    Any problems in the LDS Church today are caused by the members themselves, NOT by the Church leadership (General Authority levels).

  5. Jim Davis
    July 24, 2012 at 2:17 pm #

    Dave, I agree with the gist of what DBreit said. I went through those scriptures you listed and didn’t find any evidence of what you’re alluding to.

    Connor, I love how you brought up the redistribution of wealth as an example of “the more righteous” partaking in the spoils of the secret combinations. Most don’t even realize that they’re taking part of a system of theft but they (we) indeed are. Also, I contend that those who support aggressive warfare and other intentional killings of innocent people are inadvertently taking part in the murderous part of the combination.

  6. Jimz
    July 24, 2012 at 5:52 pm #

    Its kind of strange, but the first US government bail out occured in 1792, when the federal government bailed out the 13 United States, which were over-burdened by their debt from the Revolutionary War. Revolution was technically a violation of biblical law, as it was an act of rebellion.

    Many of the founding fathers were DEISTS, and denied miracles, the inerrancy of the bible, and probably would have been atheists if the idea was more common for the time period. Historical revisionists seem to overlook these things in an attempt to repaint the USA as an intended christian theocracy.

    Revolution takes planning, and secrecy to accomplish. There is an actual oath, should I say ‘combination’? for those serving in the continental army.

    “”I _____, do acknowledge the United States of America to be Free, Independent, and Sovereign States, and declare that the people thereof owe no allegiance or obedience to George the Third, King of Great Britain; and I renounce, refute and abjure any allegiance or obedience to him; and I do swear that I will to the utmost of my power, support, maintain, and defend the said United States, against the said King George the Third, his heirs and successors, and his and their abettors, assistants and adherents; and will serve the said United States in the office of…”

    So, the revolution intended to become the new people in power. Being of British ancestry they would have been difficult to tell apart from the British army. Some special cultural distinction must have been made to tell each other apart.

  7. outside the corridor
    July 25, 2012 at 6:49 am #

    good essay again–

    doing my part?

    It took me several years to ‘wake up’ over 35 years ago–

    and when I ‘woke up’ to the awful situation . . . the government was reasonably sound–

    there weren’t many of *us* back then who were aware of what was going on–

    some got absorbed into the old Freeman Institute–

    while Cleon Skousen did much good, of course, many LDS who were involved in the search for truth about the gadiantons in the 60s, 70s, and 80s fell fast asleep again in the arms of the GOP–

    while the apostles and prophets of the church are good men, the church’s finances operate according to the customs, rules, and regulations of the current financial system in place in the world–as the world goes, the church goes, which is why in the 60s members of the church were warned to be self-sufficient, because, as it was often said, “in the event of a collapse, the church cannot take care of everyone”–

    we have not, yet, achieved Zion–

  8. outside the corridor
    July 25, 2012 at 6:56 am #

    oh, and in the 80s . . . LDS allowed George Hansen to be a victim of the gadiantons–

    many LDS were his accusers–



    My husband and I met George Hansen before and after his ordeal. We did not know what was going on with him; we didn’t find out about it until it was ‘over’–

    once I realized that things like this could happen in the U.S.–

    I was never again in danger of falling asleep–

    but it is difficult for those of *us* with little influence to do anything–

    my husband and I are ‘little’ people, people without family, wealth or influence. All we have is knowledge; we have educated ourselves about all of this, but few have listened to us. We have made a valiant attempt to wake others up, but as we are not wealthy or prominent, we have largely been unheard.

    Nor are we ‘leaders’. We have always been very, very active, but our ‘work’ has been in other areas (our children, adopting special needs children)–

    we have always had callings, but never prestigious ones–

    we are invisible. We have educated ourselves and have tried to inform others, but they do not, literally, ‘see’ us–

    we relate to the poor Zoramites–

    So what have I done? Well, my best, but it hasn’t been good enough–

    seeing things ‘unfold’ has been like watching a train wreck and not being able to stop it–

  9. Val
    July 25, 2012 at 7:18 am #

    H. Verlan Andersen covers this subject as well as any writer I have read. His five books (President Benson’s favorite author) are ebooks now. http://www.utahsrepublic.org/h-verlan-andersen-books-and-prophets-speak-out-on-socialism/ shows a page where you can download the pdf’s.

  10. Jon
    July 25, 2012 at 9:17 am #

    And those state legislators that put police men above the law. Those juries that say the killer policeman is innocent. The judges that protect the guilty police men.

  11. eggyknap
    July 25, 2012 at 9:48 am #

    Hugh Nibley always said we’re ignoring the Book of Mormon, to our condemnation. I suspect a big part of the ignoring we’re doing comes in failing to realize that the Book of Mormon teaches not only how individuals should direct their lives, but how they should manage their communities. In other words, although we generally pay close attention to the Book of Mormno’s teachings on individual righteousness, we ignore completely its instructions about how to run a government. Politics has, in most circles, become so taboo as a topic of conversation that we ignore much of our fundamental scripture in order to avoid starting an argument, or rather, because we’re so unskilled at disagreeing gracefully that we prefer to disregard fully half of the keystone of our religion.

  12. JL
    July 25, 2012 at 10:14 am #

    Connor, you have gotten right to the heart of the matter, especially as we watch the posturing of our president and the other politicos in this election countdown. Since awakening in my 20s, I have seen little to counter what has progressively become bolder, dare I say flagrant, actions from Washington to the point that I wonder how anyone can be in the dark still. Just as the Nephites, it appears we are ripening for our destruction.

  13. AV
    July 25, 2012 at 11:16 am #

    Not only does the Book of Mormon warn us of Gadiantons taking over our government but it also warns and prophesies that false prophets and false doctrines will take over and corrupt the Holy Church of God in the latter days.

    Ancient BoM prophets prophesied of a deep latter day apostasy of the Church, where everyone will be corrupted and deceived by false prophets and false doctrines, except a few humble followers of Christ.

    It is apparent that this apostasy has happened and only a few in and out of the Church aren’t being deceived today by false prophets, falsehoods and the philosophies of men.

    Joseph Smith taught that the ‘Kingdom of God’ which he restored, will remain on the earth until Christ returns as long as there is just ‘1 righteous man’ with the Priesthood who can receive personal revelation from heaven.

    Thus a few humble followers of Christ, in and out of the Church, still possess and are being guided by the Holy Spirit and believe in and live the true Gospel of Jesus Christ today.

  14. MuchoBrento
    July 25, 2012 at 11:31 am #

    This is a great article Connor. The quote from President Hinckley really stands out to me, and when compared to our time is truly frightening:

    “The people succumbed to the wiles of ambitious and scheming leaders
    – who oppressed them with burdensome taxes, (DONE)
    – who lulled them with hollow promises, (DONE)
    – who countenanced loose and lascivious living. (DONE)
    – led the people into terrible wars (DONE)
    – that resulted in the death of millions and (DONE)
    – the final and total extinction of [a] great civilization (We should count on this being done to the US as well)

    Also of note is that President Hinckley says that “the people succumbed”. We as a people don’t need to be initiated into the Gadianton Robbers secret oathes to be a part of the problem. We just need to succumb to what are “leaders” say we should.

    It is in this sense that a vast majority of the church is guilty. How many church members are for unjustified wars, and in turn justify the deaths of millions? For bank bailouts? For politicians who are full of hollow promises and use their words to manipulate (Romney comes immediately to mind)? Church members who proudly justify that they voted “the lesser of two evils”? Etc.

    The church is complicit in building up the Gadiantons, if only through the church’s apathy towards the Gadiantons, and through its omission to defend the principles that they are taught in the scriptures.

  15. Andrew
    July 25, 2012 at 8:35 pm #

    “..the infestation of secret combinations into the Nephite and Jaredite societies would not have been successful without the toleration and support of the people themselves.” -The truth hurts. I can’t believe people can see the unhinging of America….

  16. AzCodito
    July 26, 2012 at 2:43 am #

    Matthew 25. The 10 virgins are not the people of the world, they are not even the general membership of the church. They are tithing paying, temple going scripture reading members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints. 5 were foolish and 5 had enough oil.
    How many people in our church are on food stamps and other forms of welfare? The canker that is so evident in our society is just as prevalent in the church.

  17. outside the corridor
    July 26, 2012 at 6:32 am #

    MuchoBrento, that second to the last paragraph is good–


    AzCodito, we don’t use food stamps or other government programs, but we know hard-working, vulnerable people who are otherwise righteous who do–

    in an economy as corrupt as the present one, it’s not as simple as it ‘should’ be–

    we know a young couple with very special needs and disabilities who are hard workers but who don’t earn enough to provide for their needs (and those of their children, one of whom is disabled)–

    who use food stamps; they have also diligently worked to store food–

    they have also tried to get food from the bishop’s storehouse at various times; a number of times they have had to throw away ‘rotten’ food, especially produce, things that were inedible when they received them . . . from the storehouse. It’s heartbreaking, but helping the poor has become a ‘sidetrack’ of the welfare program in some areas–

    so . . . don’t throw rotten tomatoes at those who are already floundering under rotten circumstances–

  18. MuchoBrento
    July 26, 2012 at 11:16 am #

    OTC… I had the chance to see that video and read that link about George Hansen. All I can say is “WOW!!!”. How have I never heard of this man before now?

    In light of George Hansen’s story about the corruption in our government, do you have any speculation as to why Ron Paul has lasted so long?

  19. Ralph Hughes
    July 26, 2012 at 2:02 pm #

    Many if not most church members do not recognize the evil of unjustified wars, bank and corporate bailouts, foreign aid and domestic welfare, etc.

  20. TRON
    July 26, 2012 at 7:31 pm #

    Connor, does the Koch brothers attempt to take over The CATO Institute count as one of these conspiracies?


  21. Amber
    July 27, 2012 at 12:40 am #

    “In light of George Hansen’s story about the corruption in our government, do you have any speculation as to why Ron Paul has lasted so long?” by MuchoBrento

    Maybe because God isn’t letting them kill him yet? Like Alma and Amulek, his work isn’t done yet. Some righteous people are martyrs, and others are preserved to perform a work.

  22. TRON
    July 27, 2012 at 6:05 am #

    So would the LIBOR scandal count? Caught by the evil federal government?


  23. outside the corridor
    July 27, 2012 at 7:15 am #

    No, I don’t, MuchoBrento (and Amber)–

    I don’t know why Ron Paul has lasted so long, but I know that for decades he was a ‘laughingstock’–

    and ignored–

    George Hansen did survive his ordeal, and it changed him and impoverished his family–

    There are those, I know, who believe that Dr. Paul is ‘owned’, but I am determined not to believe that; I just think he has a different mission from that of George Hansen–

    I think that George had his experience during a time when Paul was out of office, also; Dr. Paul hasn’t been in office continuously, but I don’t know–

    TRON, of COURSE all of those things ‘count’–

    I don’t divide the American ‘world’ into ‘liberal’ and ‘conservative’, and I think the Koch brothers are highly suspect and corrupt–

    There are no good evil and conspiring men; an evil and conspiring man is not better because he is either ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative’, ‘democrat’ or ‘republican’–

    those labels are confusing and truth-defeating–

    And as for LIBOR . . . no evil gets caught if it doesn’t want to get caught–

    there are ‘wheels within wheels’–

  24. outside the corridor
    July 27, 2012 at 7:18 am #

    TRON, my advice to you–

    question collectivism–

    “evil federal government”–

    what does that mean? There is no such thing as a homogenous unit that involves any group of people–

    so to speak of an “evil federal government” as a group that can be pinned down to having any one interest or quality is–


    There ARE, I have no doubt, evil people within government, and I think the course of government has been led in a very crooked way from the beginning–getting worse, but the idea of “evil federal government” being an exact entity is . . .

    not sound.

    There are many evil things that have been fostered by government that are not, in fact, ‘government’–

    such as economic developers–

    “economic hitmen”–

  25. Nick
    July 27, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

    Great article here Connor.

    Passing it on to as many people as I can.


  26. Rhonda
    July 28, 2012 at 7:10 pm #

    Thank you, Connor. I will pass along your article.

    Warning: this is a little long…
    Gadianton Principles:

    -God is irrelevant to prosperity.

    -God doesn’t actually exist, and the scriptural version of liberty, property, and country are a farce; there are no such things as God-given rights. Rights come from the government. 3 Ne 3:2, also The Proper Role of Government by ETB

    -God’s laws and The Lord’s Way are a drag. Hel. 7:4, 5 (also search for ‘The Lord’s Way’ on lds.org)

    -It’s unfair to suffer consequences of God’s commandmands (which are, after all, irrelevant!), and others have a responsibility to take away those consequences. If they don’t, I’ve been wronged. Hel. 6:21-23, 30; D&C 130:20-21

    -We (Gadianton participants) have been ’wronged’ ((this sounds like it’s from moral judgments and financial suffering- really just feeling the consequences of their choices)), and are trying simply to avenge those wrongs. 3 Ne. 3:4

    -Power, glory, and prosperity are the greatest good and require a plan from us. 3 Ne. 3:3, 7, 9, Hel. 7:21, Ether 8:23 Freedom is in direct opposition to it. Ether 8:25

    -The way to prosperity is to turn over your property and belongings; become part of a group where all are equal. 3 Ne. 3:6, 7

    -If you’re not with us, you are a threat to our wellbeing. If you won’t give us what you have, we are justified in lying, stealing, or destroying you to get it. 3 Ne. 3:6, 8, 10; Hel. 6:17, 7:21

    -We (Gadiantons) can only be avenged properly (things will be “fair” and equal) when we control the government. 3 Ne. 3:10, Hel. 6:39, 7:5
    Intimidation, trickery (flattery and “hollow promises”- Hinckley), and threat of violence are a good way to get others to participate. This works best if no one knows what we’re planning. Ether 8:9, 14, 16,17

    -We(Gads) can hurt anyone who hasn’t made the same covenants as us, Hel. 6:22

    -Those who believe in and follow the Lord are to be trampled, smitten, torn, killed, and ignored. Hel. 6:39

    -Anything is alright if it gets you what you want: murder, stealing, lying, whoredoms (1828 definition includes lewdness, fornication, and the desertion of the worship of the true God in favor of elevating some other end), abominations (1828 def. =moral defilements), and “all manner of wickedness”. Hel. 6:21,23

    -Pride is both the root and the result of it: Me vs. you (this includes class warfare, according to Pres. Hinckley), my way –or ‘our’ way- vs. God’s. Hel. 7:26, Hel. 7:4, 5, 15, 16, 18, 26
    * * * *

    And all of this leads to destruction – Hel. 7:27-29, Ether 8:21-22, D&C 130:20-21

  27. jimz
    July 28, 2012 at 8:37 pm #

    D&C 130:20-21 sort of sounds like the law of cause and effect, or karma. The idea existed for thousands of years prior to mormonism. In addition it does not require a god for it to function.

  28. jimz
    July 28, 2012 at 9:23 pm #

    I love reading your posts, they are grounding to me. For some reason your words are a good translation. Most of this stuff I don’t comprehend at all.

    Do you mark a difference between people who knowingly do evil, and are trying to actually harm, and those that just do what they do because they believe they are doing good. But perhaps have a different premise for why the world exists and its purpose?

  29. Rhonda
    July 28, 2012 at 9:51 pm #

    So what you’re saying is that you agree with the first three principles I posted…

    And yes, there is a law of cause and effect. God himself lives within it.

  30. jimz
    July 29, 2012 at 5:12 pm #

    Some atheists believe in karma, karma is implied in some passages of the new testament. Its definately in eastern religions, some that believe in god, and some that don’t. So I suppose cause and effect can exist with or without god, it does not require a god for it to function.

  31. Rhonda
    July 30, 2012 at 5:16 pm #


    I completely agree with your last sentence.

    Since God does exist, and since he has something major that we don’t– a complete understanding of natural law– it follows that we should maybe pay attention to what he tells us. He is real, he wants our real and lasting happiness, and he does speak to us- through scriptures, modern prophets, and through His Spirit.

  32. jimz
    July 30, 2012 at 6:49 pm #

    Thats a big premise, that there is a god. There might not be one, there could be many. Perhaps if there is a god it could be one that most people have never heard of. After watching a video “Ancient Aliens: Aliens and Deadly cults”, I am not sure of anything related to religion. I don’t know what motivation any particular god may actually have. I was surprised to learn that there were a number of deadly christian cults in history, mostly self destructive.

    It also made me think of this link about Gadianton robbers. There was this Thuggee cult of India that sounded very dangerous. Supposedly murdering people in the millions, it was considered a devotional act. Cults motivated by belief seem more dangerous than anything else.

    I am not sure if there was ever an atheist cult in the Americas as your principles outline. I am aware of cults which did ritual sacrifice in the americas, but that was motivated in belief in god or gods.

    I just hope that the LDS god is as good as you believe, as the movement is gaining so many followers.

  33. Philip Wickner
    November 16, 2012 at 3:19 pm #

    I just published; The New Gadiantons. Digital Legend Press, SLC. Your article is spot on. Good work. The modern day robbers have sole management of the government.

  34. Concerned Citizen Number 5
    December 24, 2013 at 10:46 pm #

    The making of abortion legal, Homosexual marriage (which is a contradiction) and legalization of marijuana are just examples of the agenda of the wicked on being obeyed by his blinded wicked servants.

    The NSA spying is another example.

    Civilizations rise and fall, the USA is no exception. The constitution was given by God to help in governing of a God fearing and moral people. It was not given to justify sin and make it legal.

  35. David Edward Garber
    October 30, 2016 at 1:13 pm #

    Yes, America’s political system is arguably becoming increasingly dominated by smooth-talking deceptive corrupt cunning statists who, driven by a lust for Earthly wealth and power and “glory,” conspire to seduce us into committing large-scale legalized sin, including both murder and plunder. FDR built upon Hoover’s start to standardize large-scale legalized plunder through the coercive redistribution of everyone’s wealth. Barack Obama is now doing the same with large-scale legalized murder through unjust warfare and especially preemptive summary executions of alleged potential terrorists. Murder (the unjust taking of a person’s life) and robbery (the unjust taking of a person’s property) are innately sinful acts and do not become less so simply because they’re rendered legal. It’s not Earthly law that determines whether they’re wrong or not—it’s timeless universal law. And, so, they’re no less wrong even when they’re legal. We would do well not to uphold murder and plunder, to avoid empowering those who both advocate and perpetrate such criminal sins, and to pray for the welfare of their souls in accordance with the Golden Rule, as the Savior Jesus Christ both taught and exemplified so perfectly.

  36. David Edward Garber
    October 30, 2016 at 1:26 pm #

    Pride has also been identified as the cause of Nephite destruction, which destruction was laid in a foundation of wicked politically-involved people (see Alma 10:27), and completed through secret combinations. Secret combinations are among the fruit of pride, whose central feature is enmity. We would do well to strip ourselves of enmity, as well as pride, and to nurture both humility and charity instead, as we increasingly come to love/serve both God with all our souls and our neighbors as ourselves, as the Savior Jesus Christ perfectly both taught and exemplified. As we better follow His example in keeping those two greatest commandments in all of their wonderful myriad details, we build Zion and help do away with secret combinations. Thankfully, the great and abominable church of the devil will ultimately fall, despite its relatively-larger dominions, while God’s only true and living Church will prevail.


  37. M. Cheney
    November 6, 2016 at 3:38 pm #

    See also 3 Nephi 16:10 for further enlightenment from the mouth of the Savior.

  38. Rob S
    February 27, 2017 at 2:46 pm #

    Great points. Moroni still has responsibility for this land. He will help us, particularly as we study the Book of Mormon. I can feel him reaching out to us to warn us. I also believe that many from the other side of the veil want very much to help us. One of the keys to destroy Gadianton-like organizations is to bring their murderous and lascivious acts to light and then to justice. We must have like minded people all over the globe bringing these dark things to light.
    Gazalem was to bring these hidden works of darkness to light to the blessing of the people (See Alma 37:23) So each of us can so live to have the spirit of prophecy and revelations that the Nephites required for their military leaders. So each priesthood bearer in the Church needs to earnestly seek for the spirit of prophecy and revelation so that collectively we provide many points of light to expose those works of darkness, just as righteous Nephites did to defeat them. Then, even if the Gadiantons get control of the government, like Nephi, we will be given the sealing powers (Helaman 5:10) and be able to call upon God for whatever is needed for our land and people, even if it be a famine or drought, etc. Of course we want to be a blessing to all people, but the Lord will give us power to do whatever is needed, provided that the people will repent and follow Him.

  39. Everaldo
    June 26, 2017 at 7:33 am #

    A republican wrote this article as evidences by the mention of Obama and Operation Fast and Furious. How about the greatest of all Secret Combinations? Ronald Reagan and the Iran Contra’s? This would’ve been a better article had you mentioned both or neither. But of coarse you wanted to keep The Iran Contra hearings a “SECRET”. What a shame. This article started out so well too.

  40. Randy Nielsen
    March 28, 2019 at 1:32 am #

    Connor i saw your putrid attempt to try and justify the LDS position on Healing herb. I have renamed your organization the Enslavus institute, why because you and some other brethren have taken my free will to use Gods healing herb, or at least see if it have some of the benefit that it has been used for for millenia. I hold you and other self righteous SOB brothers responsible for a sergery on my eye that may not have been necessary. You do- gooders prohibited Marijuana use for Glaucoma, which I have, and ALL the big Pharma medicines you and Dr. Nelson agreed with the other pharisees on were better than Marijuana, well all the big pharma junk DID NOT work for me and I was never allowed to try a known remedy thanks to you Omnipotent gods vetoing the real GOD! I have withdrawn from church because of Gadiantons such as we have in Utah Politics

  41. Bilcliffe
    September 14, 2019 at 3:31 pm #

    Wow! A lot of comments here. I did feel concerned that those secret plotters had included “those who had been high priests and lawyers” although there is no one more hard hearted than an apostate member. Third Nephi is v ery instructive it seems and interesting that these things were coming to a head in the period immediately prior to the appearance of Jesus Christ.

  42. Robert Simmons
    February 13, 2020 at 12:46 am #

    The Book of Mormon, like the Brass Plates of Laban when Lehi read them, will fill us with the spirit of prophecy and revelation. Our constant close study of it will fill us with revelation on how to defeat the Gadiantons of our day.

  43. Jamie Muns
    April 22, 2022 at 1:48 am #

    Interesting enough how here we are 2022 and the world is completely fractured! We have been through a world pandemic, the are in the midst of a coup with our current US GOVT. Inflation is at the highest it’s ever been. The Gadiantons definitely run the show. The 2nd coming is approaching very quickly and mens hearts are failing them. The gathering of Israel continues to go forth gathering these final fruits and temples continue being built!
    Beautiful continued revelation from The Master is being received! As for the dear brother comments in 2019, medicinal cannabis is approved by the church and legalized! We are instructed to be a Covenant abiding people and to love one another! God bless us as we hold the line and wait patiently for The Lord!


  1. Why Secret Combinations Matter | Connor's Conundrums - July 7, 2013

    […] detail the threat and pervasive influence of these works of darkness. Murder, plunder, and other conspiratorial and wicked actions must be destroyed such that God’s covenants can be fulfilled. To infuse the earth with light, […]

  2. A Widespread Misunderstanding About Satan’s War on Agency | Connor's Conundrums - February 8, 2015

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    […] combinations in the Book of Mormon gaining power and then replacing the laws of God with the “laws of wickedness“—committing “all manner of wickedness and whoredoms” and getting away with it, or so they […]

  4. Religion and the State: Can Latter-day Man Serve Two Masters? | Connor's Conundrums - June 22, 2015

    […] if the law has been substituted for the laws of wickedness, allowing Gadiantons to gain […]

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