And [Alma] did baptize every one that went forth to the place of Mormon; and they were in number about two hundred and four souls; yea, and they were…filled with the grace of God” (Mosiah 18:16).
Alma was previously a priest of wicked King Noah, but upon hearing the prophet Abinadi’s teachings, he believed what was taught. Despite Alma’s pleading for Abinadi’s life to be spared – he was executed and subsequently, King Noah cast Alma out and threatened his life. Nevertheless, Alma began to preach about the gospel and redemption in secret – and taught about the essential baptismal ordinance as “a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you” (Mosiah 18:10). Alma invited those who believed his words to enter the waters of Mormon: “As ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light; Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort…” (Mosiah 18:8-9).
Elements of this painting were spotlighted in this description: “Teichert surrounds the central baptismal scene with groups of people amidst the trees. They watch as Alma baptizes a woman and a mother prepares her daughter for baptism…The water is so pure that one can see through it. A man on the right faces away from the crowd as he stands guard against the ever-present danger of King Noah’s men. While the main shape formed by the figures is an inverted triangles, children in white form a secondary triangle – one eagerly waits, one is being baptizes, and one returns to the bank, water dripping from his hands and clothes.” (footnote: Welch, John W. and Doris R. Dant, The Book of Mormon Paintings of Minerva Techert. Provo: BYU Studies and SLC: Bookcraft, 1997. 92.)
Additional reading: “Alma the Elder”
More information on the artist: “Minerva Kohlhepp Teichert: With a Bold Brush”