In these verses, there is an interesting comparison between the armor of Lehi’s excellent troops and the armor of later Nephite armies in the same battle who meet the Lamanites later.
While on the other hand, there was now and then a man fell among the Nephites, by their swords and the loss of blood, they being shielded . . . from the strokes of the Lamanites, by their breastplates, and their armshields, and their head-plates; and thus the Nephites did carry on the work of death among the Lamanites. (Alma 43:38)
…many of the Nephites were slain by their hands, yea, for they [the Lamanites] did smite in two many of their head-plates, and they did pierce many of their breastplates, and they did smite off many of their arms; and thus the Lamanites did smite in their fierce anger. (Alma 43:44)
Somehow one part of the army of the Nephites had better armor than another group. The army without the good armor found they couldn’t stand up as well under Lamanite attack. Why is this?
I don’t think they had armor factories at that time. Any armor they made--and it probably had to be made quickly—was probably made at home by the combined efforts of their families.
There’s a great lesson here for us today. Our spiritual armor in the war against evil is not made at a factory and bought. It has to be made at home. It has to be carefully fitted to the individual. It has to be purposeful, rather than casual, otherwise it won’t be strong enough. It's made of prayer, gospel study, and a pattern of righteous choices that keeps the Spirit with us.
You probably got done reading the scripture from Ephesians about putting on the armor of God and all the pieces that entails, so I’ll skip a discussion of the pieces of armor.
The Nephites made their armor for this battle and not doubt it continued to serve many more times, if it was good armor. But we must begin building our armor from the very beginning, since the attacks are coming more and more early. We must build our armor and keep it strong, otherwise we will find our armor is not strong enough to protect us.