Lesson 5

Lehi and His Family Are Led through the Wilderness

“Lesson 5: Lehi and His Family Are Led through the Wilderness,” Primary 4: Book of Mormon (1997), 16–18


To help the children understand that when they do all they can and trust in Heavenly Father, he will guide them.


  1. Prayerfully study 1 Nephi 16, Alma 37:38–46, and Proverbs 3:5–6. Then study the lesson and decide how you want to teach the children the scripture account. (See “Preparing Your Lessons,”> p. vi, and “Teaching from the Scriptures,” p. vii.)

  2. Select the discussion questions and enrichment activities that will involve the children and best help them achieve the purpose of the lesson.

  3. Before teaching the lesson, try the attention activity so you know how to do it.

  4. Materials needed:

    1. A Book of Mormon for each child.

    2. A Bible for each child.

    3. A 20-inch (50-cm) piece of string for each child.

    4. Pictures 4-15, The Liahona (Gospel Art Picture Kit 302; 62041), and 4-16, Nephi and His Broken Bow.

Suggested Lesson Development

Invite a child to give the opening prayer.

Attention Activity

Give the children each a piece of string 20 inches (50 cm) long. Have them hold one end of the string in their right hand and the other end in their left hand. Ask them to tie a knot in the string without letting go of the ends. If you do not have enough string, have one child do the activity in front of the class.

  • Does this seem too hard or impossible to do?

Have the children try to tie a knot again, but this time have them fold their arms first and with their arms still folded have them pick up one end of the string with their right hand and the other end with their left hand. Ask them to hold onto the ends as they unfold their arms. Their string will be knotted. Collect the strings from the children. Point out that the children could tie the knot when you showed them how to do it. Tell the children that in the same way we all have challenges in our lives that might seem impossible to solve. If we do all we can and put our trust in Heavenly Father, he will help us find the answers.

Scripture Account

Using the pictures at appropriate times, teach the accounts of Lehi’s family being guided by the Liahona and Nephi’s broken bow from 1 Nephi 16:17–32. (For suggested ways to teach the scripture account, see “Teaching from the Scriptures,” p. vii.) Encourage the children to do their best and trust in the Savior no matter what happens.

Discussion and Application Questions

Study the following questions and the scripture references as you prepare your lesson. Use the questions you feel will best help the children understand the scriptures and apply the principles in their lives. Reading the references with the children in class will help them gain insights into the scriptures.

  • How was Lehi blessed for his faith and obedience as he traveled into the wilderness? (1 Nephi 16:10.)

  • What did Nephi’s father and brothers do when Nephi broke his steel bow? (1 Nephi 16:17–21.) Why is it easy to complain when things don’t go the way you want?

  • Even though Nephi was tired and hungry, he did not complain. What did he do to help solve the problem? (1 Nephi 16:22–32.)

  • Why did Nephi ask his father for help? (1 Nephi 16:23–24.) How have your parents helped you when you have had a problem?

  • How can you, like Nephi, be a good example to your parents and your brothers and sisters?

  • How did the Liahona (the brass ball) work? (1 Nephi 16:26–30.)

  • What has Heavenly Father given us to point the way back to him? (Alma 37:44–45.) Where can we find the words of Christ? (The scriptures.) What must we do to be able to have the words of Christ guide us? (Alma 37:46.)

  • What must we do if we want help from Heavenly Father?

  • What will Heavenly Father do if we have faith and trust in him? (Proverbs 3:5–6.) How can you show trust in Heavenly Father? Why do you think Heavenly Father wants us to trust him and do all we can?

Enrichment Activities

You may use one or more of the following activities any time during the lesson or as a review, summary, or challenge.

  1. Have the children retell the story of Nephi’s broken bow. Have them discuss which of Lehi’s family members they would like to be like when they are faced with problems.

  2. Have the children dramatize the story of the broken bow. Then have them role-play what might have happened if Laman and Lemuel had trusted in the Lord.

  3. Ask the children what the first principle of the gospel is. Emphasize that they must have faith in Jesus Christ. Help them memorize the fourth article of faith.

  4. Review the story of Nephi obtaining the brass plates as recorded in 1 Nephi 3–5. Compare what Nephi did then to what he did when he broke his bow. Help the children understand that both times he did all he could and trusted in Heavenly Father to help him.

  5. Sing or read the words to “Faith” (Children’s Songbook, p. 96) or “Seek the Lord Early” (Children’s Songbook, p. 108).


Testimony and Challenge

Share with the children a time when you trusted in Heavenly Father to help you accomplish something difficult. Bear testimony of the importance of doing all we can and then placing our trust in Heavenly Father. Challenge the children to think about Nephi during the coming week and try to be more like him when problems arise.

Suggested Family Sharing

Encourage the children to share with their families a specific part of the lesson, such as a story, question, or activity, or to read with their families the “Suggested Home Reading.”

Suggested Home Reading

Suggest that the children study 1 Nephi 16:18–32 at home as a review of this lesson.

Invite a child to give the closing prayer.