A Dictionary of the Book of Mormon/Korihor

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KORIHOR. An anti-Christ, who appeared among the Nephites B. C. 75. He taught many of the heresies of Nehor, prominent among which were the denial of the coming of the Redeemer and of the efficacy of His atonement. His doctrine was that every man fared in this life according to his management, prospered according to his shrewdness, and conquered according to his strength. He proclaimed that whatsoever a man did was no crime, for when a man was dead there was an end thereof.

As a missionary Korihor was, for a short time, a success. We first hear of him preaching his satanic doctrines in the land of Zarahemla, and, as he claimed to fully believe all he taught, the law could not touch him, as full religious liberty was guaranteed under the constitution and laws of the Nephite commonwealth. From Zarahemla he went to the land of Jershon, to inoculate the Ammonites with his soul-destroying vagaries. But they were a wiser and more zealous people for the gospel than were many of the Nephites. They took him, bound him, and carried him before Ammon, their high priest. He directed that Korihor should be removed beyond the border of their land, which command having been obeyed, we next find the unabashed impostor laboring among the people of the land of Gideon. There he also met with rebuffs. He was arrested by the people and taken before the chief officers in that land. They found they could do nothing that would be satisfactory with him, so they remanded him into the custody of the proper officers with instructions to carry him before Alma and Nephihah, in Zarahemla. When brought before these worthies — the highest dignitaries of the church and state — Korihor continued in his course of loud-mouthed blasphemy, defiant assumption, and wilful falsehood. He argued against the existence of the Father, and the coming of His Only Begotten. Alma accused him of arguing against his convictions, but this he stoutly denied, and clamored for a sign to be given, as he pretended, that he might be convinced. Alma, at length, wearied by his impious importunities, told him that God, as a sign, would smite him dumb. This terrible warning, though it caused the pretender some uneasiness, only resulted in an attempt at prevarication. He said: I do not deny the existence of a God, but I do not believe there is a God; and I say also, that ye do not know that there is a God; and except ye show me a sign I will not believe. Then Alma answered: This will I give unto thee for a sign, that thou shalt be struck dumb, according to my words; and I say that, in the name of God, ye shall be struck dumb, that ye shall no more have utterance.

Korihor received his sign: Alma's words were fulfilled; the sign-seeker never more spoke on earth. When the hand of the Lord fell on him he recanted. By writing, as he could not speak, he confessed the power of God, and acknowledged that he had been led astray by Satan, who had come to him in the form of an angel of light. He begged that the curse might be removed, but Alma, well knowing the baseness of his heart, refused to intercede before heaven in his behalf, lest when restored to speech he would again strive to deceive the people.

A proclamation was next sent throughout all the land. In it the chief judge recited what had happened to Korihor, and called upon those who had believed in his words to speedily repent, lest the same judgments should come upon them. This proclamation put an end to the iniquity of Korihor, for his followers were all brought back again to the truth. But Korihor, deserted by the devil, a vagabond and a beggar, still continued to beg his way from town to town, from house to house, until one day, in a city of the Zoramites, he was run over and trodden down. The injuries that he received at this time were so great that he soon after died.