About a week ago, my husband and I got in a discussion about a fine point in the war chapters of the Book of Mormon. I noticed that Captain Moroni usually required a covenant not to fight again of those who surrendered to him. My husband and I were unsure whether the covenant was part of the surrender or whether the covenant WAS the surrender. I submitted my question to Morgan Deane, whose excellent blog “Warfare and the Book of Mormon” is devoted to military aspects in the Book of Mormon. He has a lot of background in a wide range of military texts of the world, so I thought that if anyone could answer the question, he could.
Sure enough, I was right. Check out his answer here.
One of his points--rejecting the covenant would result in damnation--suggests to me that breaking the covenant would also result in damnation and causes me to think about the Lamanites who were so anxious to avoid fighting the Nephites. Were those Lamanites led by Lehonti (see Alma 47) some of the soldiers who had previously taken a covenant of peace? If they were, this might explain their extreme reaction to the Lamanite king’s command to get ready to fight again.