“June 21–27. Doctrine and Covenants 67–70: ‘Worth … the Riches of the Whole Earth,’” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: Doctrine and Covenants 2021 (2020)
“June 21–27. Doctrine and Covenants 67–70,” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: 2021
Record Your Impressions
From 1828 to 1831, the Prophet Joseph Smith received many revelations from the Lord, including divine counsel for individuals, instructions on governing the Church, and inspiring visions of the latter days. But many of the Saints hadn’t read them. The revelations weren’t yet published, and the few available copies were handwritten on loose sheets that were circulated among members and carried around by missionaries.
Then, in November 1831, Joseph called a council of Church leaders to discuss publishing the revelations. After seeking the Lord’s will, these leaders made plans to publish the Book of Commandments—the precursor to today’s Doctrine and Covenants. Soon everyone would be able to read for themselves the word of God revealed through a living prophet, vivid evidence that “the keys of the mysteries of the kingdom of our Savior are again entrusted to man.” For these and many other reasons, Saints then and now consider these revelations to be “worth … the riches of the whole Earth” (Doctrine and Covenants 70, section heading).
See Saints, 1:140–43.
The decision to publish the revelations received by Joseph Smith seems like an easy one, but some early Church leaders weren’t sure it was a good idea. One concern had to do with imperfections in the language Joseph Smith used to write the revelations. The revelation in section 67 came in response to that concern. What do you learn about prophets and revelation from verses 1–9? What additional insights do you gain from 68:3–6?
Before the Book of Commandments was printed, several Church leaders signed a written testimony that the revelations in the book are true. To see a copy of their testimony, see “Testimony, circa 2 November 1831,” Revelation Book 1, 121, josephsmithpapers.org.
The words in these verses were spoken as Orson Hyde and others were called “to proclaim the everlasting gospel, by the Spirit of the living God, from people to people, and from land to land” (verse 1). How might the declaration in verse 4 help someone who is being sent to preach the gospel? How do these words apply to you? Think of a time when you were “moved upon by the Holy Ghost” (verse 3) to say or do something. What do you find in these verses that can give you confidence to follow spiritual promptings?
President Joy D. Jones, Primary General President, taught, “[A] key to helping children become sin-resistant is to begin at very early ages to lovingly infuse them with basic gospel doctrines and principles—from the scriptures, the Articles of Faith, the For the Strength of Youth booklet, Primary songs, hymns, and our own personal testimonies—that will lead children to the Savior” (“A Sin-Resistant Generation,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2017, 88).
According to Doctrine and Covenants 68:25–28, what are some of the “basic gospel doctrines” that President Jones mentioned that parents should teach their children? Why is this important responsibility given to parents? What would you say to a parent who doesn’t feel qualified to teach these things to his or her children?
See also Tad R. Callister, “Parents: The Prime Gospel Teachers of Their Children,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2014, 32–34.
Doctrine and Covenants 67:10–14.
How do jealousy, fear, and pride keep us from growing closer to the Lord? Why can’t a “natural man” be in the Lord’s presence? (verse 12; see also Mosiah 3:19). What do we find in these verses that inspires us to “continue in patience until [we] are perfected”? (verse 13).
As a family, you might also review Elder Jeffrey R. Holland’s message “Be Ye Therefore Perfect—Eventually” (Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2017, 40–42).
Doctrine and Covenants 68:3–4.
Family members could share experiences that have strengthened their faith that the words of the Lord’s servants are “the will of the Lord,” “the mind of the Lord,” and “the power of God unto salvation” (verse 4). Or they could look for recent general conference messages that apply to a challenge your family may be facing.
Doctrine and Covenants 68:25–35.
These verses contain important counsel to “the inhabitants of Zion” (verse 26). What are we inspired to improve on after reading these verses? It might be fun to create pictures depicting some of the principles in these verses and hide them throughout your home. Then, in the coming days when someone finds a picture, you could use that as an opportunity to teach about that principle. Why is the home the best place for children to learn these things?
Doctrine and Covenants 69:1–2.
Oliver Cowdery was sent to Missouri with written copies of the Prophet’s revelations to be printed, along with money to help build the Church there. What counsel did the Lord give in verse 1 about Oliver’s journey? Why is it important to be with people “who will be true and faithful”? (verse 1). When have friends influenced us to make good or bad decisions? How can we be a good influence on others?
Doctrine and Covenants 70:1–4.
The Lord gave certain elders the responsibility to oversee the publishing of the revelations. Even though we do not have that specific responsibility, in what sense could we be considered “stewards over the revelations and commandments”? (verse 3).
For more ideas for teaching children, see this week’s outline in Come, Follow Me—For Primary.
Suggested song: “Home Can Be a Heaven on Earth,” Hymns, no. 298.