Isaac the Warrior Part 5

Isaac the Warrior Part 4

The details of our plan were discussed, debated and then decided upon. The biggest detail we needed to work out was what were we going to do with all the people; there would be a few hundred people at the banquet. We had plenty of rope to tie them, there was more rope at the palace, and there were also some linen bags at the palace that we could put over some heads, but where to put everyone? Thankfully, there would be many more of us than of them.

Paco talked to another guard that he trusted and this guard suggested that while the people were asleep, we unarm them and move them into various rooms in the palace with guards at each door. We would have plenty of men to guard everyone, especially since they would be unarmed and tied up.

My father suggested that we hold trials immediately, starting with Shim and his closest associates, with execution by hanging for those who would not repent and swear with an oath that they would support the previous laws. My mother gasped at this proposal and tears flooded her eyes. Even though Shim committed many atrocities, he was still her son. My father held her close as tears also flooded his eyes. My mother pulled back, looked at my father in his eyes and told him to do whatever he needed to do, even if it was putting her son to death. She had to give him to God and let God take care of him.

Everyone, especially the men, in our village knew exactly what needed to be done. As many details and scenarios as possible were well thought out. The men were organized into groups of ten to twenty men and each group had a specific assignment, a specific place to go in the palace, a specific room to guard. Those groups were organized into larger groups of about 100 men. There were leaders for each group, all ultimately reporting to me, Paco, and my father.

During this time of planning our escape, Paco and I redeveloped the bond we once had when we were small children. I finally could completely forgive him for what he did to me and my family. I knew his repentance was sincere and complete. I knew he was right with God and that God had forgiven him. Paco was doing all he could to make amends to me, my family, and our people. His transformation was miraculous.

The day finally came for Shim’s banquet. Shim wanted his guards and taskmasters to have one of the best banquets of their lives. The decorations were elaborate. The food was exquisite; much of the food coming from our people. The scantily dressed women were beautiful. The wine was a bit stronger in its potency–just enough to be strong, but not noticeable to those who drank it. The winemaker had the juice that Esther prepared and put it in all the jars of wine.

We were given a strict curfew and were told that if any of us left our huts and tents after sunset, we would be taken prisoner. I was concerned about the curfew and the guards that would be guarding us, but Paco assured me that all the guards were defectors. And besides, there would not be as many guards as there should have been. Paco talked Shim into having fewer guards, but some of his best and strongest guards, so more could attend the banquet. Besides, we had the strict curfew.

The banquet time arrived. The soldiers and guards, dressed in their finest apparel, headed to the palace. We were able to see a few before the sun set. As the sun set, we went into our huts, awaiting the word from the guard Paco had in the palace. This guard was to come and tell us when everyone had fallen asleep.

Paco recounted to us what happened. The feast was amazing. There were many different types of meats, breads, cheeses, and fruits. However, before the guests began eating the food, Paco made sure that everyone had wine. He offered a tribute to King Shim! He offered tributes to the guards. Others began to offer tributes! Some tributes were even for the women who were there for entertainment. Many of the guards quickly became quite infatuated with the women and began to drink more wine. They gave the women more wine, as many had high hopes to appease their infatuations later that night.

About 30 minutes after the first tribute, all in the banquet room become drunk and very sleepy. They enjoyed the festive atmosphere, but one-by-one dignitaries, guards, and entertainers fell asleep. All fell asleep except those who knew about the wine; those whom Paco trusted.

Paco quickly sent the messenger to us. Those who were on guard helped us to retrieve our weapons and ropes. Most all the men, some of the older boys, and a few women headed to the palace in anticipation. My father led the way, walking side-by-side with his wife and sons, me, and Paco.

We walked directly into the banquet room as Paco assured all guards at the palace also received wine. Everyone went straight to their assignments. We tied everyone up and put the linen bags over Shim, his associates, and as many of the high ranking guards as we had bags for. They were so well tied that we knew there would be no way to escape. Our people moved many of the prisoners to their various rooms while Paco and I led our father and mother back to his throne where they both wept. They knelt down and prayed aloud, prayed mightily in thanksgiving to God for their deliverance. We all knelt down and prayed, thanking our God for delivering us out of the captivity of Shim. We then sat down and enjoyed the feast! We let all who came with us enjoy the amazing food that Shim had prepared. The winemaker brought us weak wine that had not be tainted with the juice for us to drink.

Because of the strength of the wine, Shim and those who drank the wine took longer to wake up than it did for me and the other volunteers. But, we were ready for them! Knowing how I felt when I woke up, feeling exhilarated, we wanted to be sure that Shim and his people, if they woke up feeling the same way, would not be able to over take us.

After close to 24 hours from the time they took the first sip of wine, some began to wake up. As they awoke, they were disoriented, feeling like they had a hangover. We figured that the disoriented feeling was due to the strength of the wine. We were grateful for this as most did not have the desire to fight. While the banquet attendees were waking up in the various rooms, our people told them what happened and how my father was back on his throne. Many, even in their weakened state, shouted for joy! We did not realize there were so many who opposed Shim! Unfortunately there were some who cursed us, but those were not as many as we expected.

We gave Shim and his associates and all those who attended the banquet time to become more coherent so they would comprehend the trial they would face. Shim was first. He was brought to face our father and his bag taken off of his head. Father asked Shim if he was willing to give up his nefarious ways and follow the commandments of the land. Shim looked away from him and said that he could never do that, then spat on the floor. Father reminded Shim of the testimony that he had when he was young. Shim, with hate and evil in his eyes, said that he never had a testimony and there is no such thing as God. Father reminded him that the punishment for the atrocities that he committed was hanging. Shim dared our father to hang him. With tears in his eyes, he sent Shim to be hung.

There were several conducting the trials as we had so many people to go through. Father took care of Shim and his closest associates. There was only one of them who wanted to change and follow the laws of the land. He gave his word that he would never rebel against the king again and would follow the laws of the land. He was let free, but all the others were hung. We wept for the loss of life. Too many were hung that week. Many who were not closely associated with Shim gave us their oath that they would support my father and support the laws of the land; we were grateful for that.

It took time, many months in fact, for our society to return to normal. We had a lot of trauma that needed to be healed. Even some who originally followed Shim had trauma that needed healing. We again began to be prosperous, always remembering from whom our prosperity came from.

Com the Gardner


Com was a Jaredite gardener. Not a farmer with fields or orchards or flocks, but a gardener. He grew herbs, vegetables, and flowers for his family and to sell at the local market. He lived during a peaceful time, yet trained for warfare, as did all the Jaredite men, and even some women. He didn’t hunt much, but traded produce from his garden for meat.

Com was born to parents who loved to garden. Com’s father, David, grew fruit and nut trees as well as vegetables. Jerusha, Com’s mother, grew amazingly beautiful flowers and herbs. Both his parents sold their products in the local market. There were times when they took their produce to neighboring cities because of its excellent quality. People came from all over to purchase Jerusha’s flowers; she grew a fantastic variety, including several different types and colors of roses and medicinal herbal flowers. Her favorite customers were young men buying flowers to impress a young woman. Ahh…the delights of young love!

Com was the oldest of 5 children. From the time Com was born, he was with his parents in the garden. Before he could crawl, Jerusha would wrap him in her scarf and hold him while she worked in her flower beds. Once he was able to sit up, Com would sit in the garden and play in the dirt. He loved playing with the dirt and squishing it between his fingers!

When he started crawling and walking, David and Jerusha created a small fenced in play area to put him in to prevent him from digging up seeds and plants, which he loved to do! Com had plenty of dirt and grass to play with in his play area and was usually quite content there. As he grew older, he learned how to plant seeds, handle the plants gently, and distinguish between desirable plants and weeds.

When Com was about 5 years old, his parents gave him his own little garden space, along with a small shovel made out of fine steel with the handle being made from a type of hard wood. Com loved his shovel; he felt so grown up! He used it to dig holes to plants the seeds that he chose to grow. He used the shovel to help him weed his garden. He even used it to dig holes where he was not supposed to dig holes – even in his neighbors’ yards!

Com’s first little garden was quite a success, much to his delight. He grew radishes and lettuce because they were easy to grow, and green beans because they were some of his favorite food! After saving some plants to turn to seed for his next garden, he took his produce to the market with his father and actually made a little bit of money. He parents taught him to save most of what he earned to purchase seeds and supplies for his next garden.

When the next growing season arrived, Com was eager to start his next garden. He pleaded with his parents to have a bigger space so he could grow more plants. He wanted to grow more green beans, radishes, and lettuce, and he also wanted to grow some pumpkins. He saw big pumpkins at the market and really wanted to grow some of his own. He also chose to grow a couple of tomato plants and some marigold flowers.

David, thinking that would be a lot for a 6-year old boy, had a heart-to-heart with Com, explaining the time maintaining his garden would take. He wanted to be sure that Com understood the responsibility of a larger garden. Com assured his father that he really wanted a bigger garden and told him that he would work hard at maintaining the garden. David then agreed to allow Com to have the bigger garden.

Com took his saved up money to the market to purchase the seeds he needed to add to the seeds he saved from the previous year.

Finally, planting day arrived. The weather had been warm enough for long enough that David and Jerusha were confident that it would not freeze again. Com grabbed his shovel and began digging the proper holes to plant his seeds. He also used his shovel to create a small mound for his pumpkins seeds, then carefully planted them.

The first thing Com did after waking up each morning was to run outside to check his garden. He checked the soil to be sure it had the right amount of moisture for the seeds. He pulled any weeks that started to grow. He carefully watched for the first signs of his seeds beginning to sprout. Com loved his garden!

After about a week from the time Com planted his seeds, when he went outside to check his garden, he discovered sprouts. He was so excited, he ran back into his house, woke up his parents and begged them to come outside with him. It was a very happy day for Com.

One week later, Com’s parents were outside intently talking with Jerusha’s brother, with his two younger siblings, Leah who was 2 years old and Rebekah who was about 1 month old. Com was at his school class for the morning, learning how to read and write as that was important for the Jaredite people. Suddenly, Rebekah became fussy so Jerusha took her inside to feed her. David continued talking to Jerusha’s brother, focusing on the conversation and not paying attention to little Leah.

Leah, who absolutely adored Com, was exploring the gardens, and decided she wanted to play with the small plants in Com’s garden. While playing, she pulled most of them out! Com came home at about that time, saw his plants laying on the ground, and became very upset. He yelled, screamed, and cried. David, realized what happened and felt bad for not watching Leah more closely, took Com into his arms and apologized. He and Com looked at the pulled-out plants, observed that they were unharmed and thought they would be able to successfully replant them.

David took Leah inside the house, came back out with Com’s shovel and they proceeded to replant all the small plants. After planting, Com retrieved water from their well and carefully watered all the plants. Thankfully, all but one of the plants survived and continued to grow and produce many vegetables. Com did forgive Leah as she was very sorry for what happened.

For Com’s 11th birthday, David presented him with a full-sized shovel. He loved his new shovel as much as he’d loved the little one when he turned five. It was made of the finest steel. The handle was also of the same steel with a layer of hardwood attached to the steel. His name was carved into the wood along with a tree, signifying the Tree of Life.

He continue to expand his garden and the fruits, flowers, and vegetables that he raised. He experimented with different growing techniques, different placements of plants, cross-pollinating, among other techniques. He learned much from his experimentation. His gardens flourished!

Com became renowned for his gardening skills. Many wanted to know and learn his techniques so he taught many different gardening classes. Jerusha would teach with Com, sharing her vast knowledge of flowers.

Most years, there was plenty of rain for the gardens and fields where Com lived. For the most part, the people in his community followed the commandments of God and so were richly blessed. There were a few years where rain was not as plentiful. It was not because the people were any less righteous, it was part of their life experience. During these times of drought, Com and the other farmers pulled water from the wells to water their gardens and crops. It was tedious work, but worth the effort as the people needed their crops to survive. Many in the community came together to help each other water the crops.

One day, as many in the community came together to help water a farmer’s cops, Com’s fun-loving, happy personality longed to help lift the sober mood. It was a very warm and dry day, and they were about finished watering. Everyone was sweating because of the heat. He was now married with two children of his own, and decided that his wife, Paza, needed a little cooling off. He took one of the buckets of fresh, sweet well water and threw it on her!

Paza looked at him in amazement. He’d never done anything like that before. The others watched closely, wondering if she would be angry at Com. She acted angry, took a bucket of water to Com, who stood still, wondering what she was going to do. Then, with a big smile, she threw the bucket of water on him! Com reached for another full bucket, but Paza ran from him. Com chased her, water spilling out of the bucket, and threw the remaining water on her, and splashed water of others in the process! Soon, it became a huge water fight! Just about everyone joined in on the fun. Because of the stresses of the drought and the continued hot temperatures, the water fight helped to cool everyone off and helped the community to relax and find enjoyment.

Com and Paza continued gardening and teaching others about gardening their entire lives. They passed their skills to their seven children who continued the family tradition of gardening, working hard… and having fun, too.