CLICK HERE to read Mosiah 22.
Now that King Limhi and Ammon are caught up on the news of what happened to the group of people who left Zarahemla and now find themselves subjected to the Lamanites, they begin to make a plan of escape, or “how they should deliver themselves out of bondage” (verse 1).
Importantly, they gather the people together “that they might have the voice of the people concerning the matter” (verse 1). I think this is significant in light of it having been Zeniff ignoring the input of others (pride!) that got them into this mess in the first place.
The people agree that because there are so many of the Lamanites, there is no way they can win a direct confrontation or battle with them by war. The only chance they have is to escape through the wilderness and just get away from them (verse 2).
This is when Gideon steps up again, reminding king Limhi that his counsel has been good in the past (verse 3), and so asks permission to present a plan that will help the people escape (verse 4). King Limhi grants permission (verse 5), and Gideon shares his idea:
“Behold the back pass, through the back wall, on the back side of the city. The Lamanites, or the guards of the Lamanites, by night are drunken; therefore let us send a proclamation among all this people that they gather together their flocks and herds, that they may drive them into the wilderness by night” (verse 6).
So the plan is that Gideon will take their best wine to the Lamanites in tribute, so that the Lamanites celebrate and become extra-drunk, and then the people can escape while they sleep it off (verses 7-8).
King Limhi liked this plan! (verse 9).
So while the people packed their things and gathered their flocks and children, Gideon sent a tribute of wine to the Lamanites. This was both the wine that they owed, having to give half of everything to the Lamanites, as well as more wine as a gift, like a tip. The Lamanites celebrated, drinking and drinking and drinking (verse 10).
“And it came to pass that the people of King Limhi did depart by night into the wilderness with their flocks and their herds… towards the land of Zarahemla, being led by Ammon…” (verse 11).
The people brought with them all their provisions, as well as their valuable things, as much as they could carry on the journey (verse 12).
The Lamanites did chase them down when they sobered up, but could not catch up and could not follow their tracks (verses 15 and 16). King Limhi and his people were able to escape.
After many days of travel in the wilderness, they arrived safely in the land of Zarahemla, reunited with their own people (Nephites), and joining them as subjects of King Mosiah who had sent Ammon and the search party after them (verse 13).
“And it came to pass that Mosiah received them with joy; and he also received their records, and also the records which had been found by the people of Limhi” (verse 14).