“May 27–June 2. Joseph Smith—Matthew 1; Matthew 25; Mark 12–13; Luke 21: ‘The Son of Man Shall Come’” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: New Testament 2019 (2019)
“May 27–June 2. Joseph Smith—Matthew 1; Matthew 25; Mark 12–13; Luke 21,” Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families: 2019
Record Your Impressions
Jesus’s disciples must have found His prophecy startling: the mighty temple of Jerusalem, the spiritual and cultural center of the Jewish people, would be destroyed so utterly that “there [would] not be left … one stone upon another.” Naturally the disciples wanted to know more. “When shall these things be?” they asked. “And what is the sign of thy coming?” (Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:2–4). The Savior’s answers revealed that the great destruction coming to Jerusalem—a prophecy fulfilled in AD 70—would be relatively small compared to the signs of His coming in the last days. Things that seem even more stable than the temple in Jerusalem will prove to be temporary—the sun, the moon, the stars, the nations, and the sea. Even “the powers of heaven shall be shaken” (Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:33). If we are spiritually aware, this commotion can teach us to put our trust in something truly permanent. As Jesus promised, “Heaven and earth shall pass away; yet my words shall not pass away. … And whoso treasureth up my word, shall not be deceived” (Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:35, 37).
Joseph Smith—Matthew, located in the Pearl of Great Price, is an excerpt from the Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible. It contains revisions to the last verse of Matthew 23 and all of Matthew 24 (see Bible Dictionary, “Joseph Smith Translation”). Joseph Smith’s inspired revisions restore precious truths that had been lost. Verses 12–21 of Joseph Smith—Matthew refer to the destruction of Jerusalem anciently; verses 21–55 contain prophecies about the last days.
It can be unsettling to read about the events leading up to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. But when Jesus prophesied of these events, He told His disciples to “be not troubled” (Joseph Smith—Matthew 1:23). How can you “be not troubled” as you hear about earthquakes, wars, deceptions, and famines? Think about this question as you read these verses. Mark or note any reassuring counsel you find.
God has not revealed “the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 25:13). But He does not want that day to come upon us “unawares” (Luke 21:34), so He has given us counsel about how to prepare.
As you read these verses, identify the parables and other comparisons the Savior used to teach us to always be prepared for His Second Coming. What do you learn from them? What are you inspired to do?
In the Savior’s time, a “talent” referred to money. But the Lord’s parable of the talents can teach us about how He wants us to use any of the blessings He has given us. The Lord expects us to improve on what He has given us. As you read this parable, make a list of some of the blessings and opportunities that Heavenly Father has given to you. What does He expect you to do with these blessings? How can you use these gifts more wisely? How have your talents been magnified as you have served the Lord?
If you have ever wondered how the Lord will judge your life, read the parable of the sheep and the goats. What will matter most when you stand before Christ?
See also Mosiah 2:17.
We learn from modern revelation that Jesus’s statement “When they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage” refers to those who have not entered into the covenant of celestial marriage (see D&C 132:15–16). A celestial marriage, in which “a man [marries] a wife … by the new and everlasting covenant,” will last “through all eternity” if the husband and wife are true to their covenants (D&C 132:19).
As you read the scriptures with your family, the Spirit can help you know what principles to emphasize and discuss in order to meet the needs of your family. Here are some suggestions:
To help your family explore this chapter, invite them to look for the Savior’s teachings about how we can prepare for His Second Coming (see, for example, verses 22–23, 29–30, 37, 46–48). What can your family do to follow this counsel?
What does it mean to treasure up the word of God? How can we do this as a family? How will doing so help us avoid being deceived?
You could use the picture of the ten virgins that accompanies this outline to discuss Matthew 25:1–13. What details do family members see in the picture that are described in these verses?
Would family members enjoy hunting around the house for paper drops of oil that you have hidden? You could attach drops to objects that represent things family members can do to strengthen their testimonies and be prepared for the Second Coming, such as the scriptures, church clothes, or a picture of the temple.
What can your family members learn from the widow’s example? What did the Savior teach His disciples about offerings? Show a tithing donation slip, and discuss your family’s offerings to the Lord and how these offerings help build God’s kingdom. Are there offerings your family is making that can’t be recorded on a tithing slip?
Widow’s Mite, by Sandra Rast
For more ideas for teaching children, see this week’s outline in Come, Follow Me—For Primary.
Prepare your surroundings. “Our surroundings can profoundly affect our ability to learn and feel truth” (Teaching in the Savior’s Way, 15). Try to find a place to study the scriptures that will invite the influence of the Holy Ghost. Uplifting music and pictures can also invite the Spirit.
Five of Them Were Wise, by Walter Rane