January 20–26. 1 Nephi 11–15: “Armed with Righteousness and the Power of God”
    Footnotes
    Theme

    “January 20–26. 1 Nephi 11–15: ‘Armed with Righteousness and with the Power of God,’” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: Book of Mormon 2020 (2020)

    “January 20–26. 1 Nephi 11–15,” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: 2020

    people eating the fruit of the tree of life

    Sweeter Than All Sweetness, by Miguel Ángel González Romero

    January 20–26

    1 Nephi 11–15

    “Armed with Righteousness and with the Power of God”

    Begin your preparation to teach by reading 1 Nephi 11–15. Record your thoughts and impressions about the passages and principles you will encourage class members to discuss. The ideas below can help.

    Record Your Impressions

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    Invite Sharing

    These chapters contain principles that class members may want to consider as they share the gospel with others. Consider writing questions like the following on the board and inviting class members to share things they found in their reading this week that can help answer these questions:

    • What are the Apostasy and the Restoration?

    • Why is the Book of Mormon necessary?

    • How can I know the truths of God for myself?

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    Teach the Doctrine

    1 Nephi 11:1–5, 13–33

    God sent Jesus Christ as an expression of His love.

    • An angel showed Nephi symbols and events from the Savior’s life that demonstrate the love of God. You might find it helpful to examine these symbols and events as a class and discuss how they demonstrate God’s love for us. Are there any pictures, videos, or other visual aids you could show that depict some of the events in these verses? (see, for example, The Life of Jesus Christ Bible Videos). How do the Savior’s life and Atonement help you understand God’s love for you?

    1 Nephi 12–15

    God will help us resist Satan’s influence.

    • Members of your class may sometimes feel like the people in Nephi’s vision who were wandering in mists of darkness or facing the scorn of those in the large and spacious building. You might ask the class why mists of darkness are a good symbol for temptation (see 1 Nephi 12:17) and why the large and spacious building is a good symbol for the vain imaginations and pride of the world (see 1 Nephi 12:18). Then you could divide chapters 12–15 among class members and invite them to search for verses that teach how God will help us overcome temptation, vanity, and pride (see, for instance, 1 Nephi 13:34–40; 14:14).

    • How can you help the members of your class better understand the power that comes from the word of God? (see 1 Nephi 15:24). You might invite them to discuss questions like the following: What did Nephi learn about the power of God’s word? How does Satan try to undermine the word of God? (see 1 Nephi 13:26–29). What did the Lord and His prophets do to preserve His word? As part of your discussion, you might ask a few class members to share how they study the scriptures and what they do to make the word of God a part of their daily lives.

    1 Nephi 13

    The Lord prepared the way for the Restoration of His Church.

    • Maybe a time line would help class members understand Nephi’s vision of the events of the Restoration. You could invite class members to create one on the board, with events they find described in 1 Nephi 13. Which of these events have already taken place? Which are happening now? Consider sharing the quotation in “Additional Resources” by George Washington, first president of the United States, which shows that he recognized the influence of God in the American Revolution, an event that prepared the way for the Restoration.

    • How would class members use 1 Nephi 13 to explain to someone of another faith why the Restoration was necessary? (for example, see 1 Nephi 13:26–29, 35–42). What other scriptures could class members use to help others understand why the Restoration was necessary? (for some examples, see Topical Guide, “Restoration of the Gospel”). Class members might benefit from role-playing how they would explain to someone the need for the Restoration and how it has blessed them.

    1 Nephi 13:20–41

    The Book of Mormon teaches plain and precious truths.

    • It may be helpful to use 1 Nephi 13:20–41 to begin a discussion about why we need the Book of Mormon. Class members could list some of the “plain and precious things” that were lost from the Bible and restored through the Book of Mormon (for some examples, see verses 26 and 39 or the lists in “Additional Resources”). You might also want to invite class members to share how these restored “plain and precious things” have helped them become closer to God.

      family reading the scriptures

      The Spirit can help us discover “plain and precious things” for ourselves.

    • Consider showing the video “The Book of Mormon—a Book from God” (ChurchofJesusChrist.org), and invite class members to share what this video teaches about why we need the Book of Mormon. Or you could invite a class member to draw on the board the illustration described in Elder Tad R. Callister’s quotation in “Additional Resources.” Class members could then share how the Book of Mormon has helped them better understand the gospel of Jesus Christ.

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    Encourage Learning at Home

    To encourage class members to read 1 Nephi 16–22 during the coming week, you might mention that it includes an account that can inspire and help them when they are required to do something that seems impossible.

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    Additional Resources

    Book of Mormon Videos.

    Find videos that depict accounts from these chapters in the Book of Mormon Videos collection on ChurchofJesusChrist.org or the Gospel Library app.

    God’s hand in the American Revolution.

    George Washington said: “The man must be bad indeed who can look upon the events of the American Revolution without feeling the warmest gratitude towards the great Author of the Universe whose divine interposition was so frequently manifest in our behalf” (Letter to Samuel Langdon, Sept. 28, 1789, founders.archives.gov/documents/Washington/05-04-02-0070).

    President Russell M. Nelson’s Book of Mormon lists.

    From “The Book of Mormon: What Would Your Life Be Like without It?” (Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2017, 60–63).

    The Book of Mormon refutes notions that:

    • Revelation ended with the Bible.

    • Infants need to be baptized.

    • Happiness can be found in wickedness.

    • Individual goodness is adequate for exaltation (ordinances and covenants are needed).

    • The Fall of Adam tainted mankind with “original sin.”

    The Book of Mormon clarifies understanding about:

    • Our premortal existence.

    • Death. It is a necessary component of God’s great plan of happiness.

    • Postmortal existence, which begins in paradise.

    • How the resurrection of the body, reunited with its spirit, becomes an immortal soul.

    • How our judgment by the Lord will be according to our deeds and the desires of our hearts.

    • How ordinances are properly performed: for example, baptism, sacrament, conferring the Holy Ghost.

    • The Atonement of Jesus Christ.

    • The Resurrection.

    • The important role of angels.

    • The eternal nature of priesthood.

    • How human behavior is influenced more by the power of the word than the power of the sword.

    We need the Book of Mormon.

    Elder Tad R. Callister taught:

    “The Bible is one witness of Jesus Christ; the Book of Mormon is another. Why is this second witness so crucial? The following illustration may help: How many straight lines can you draw through a single point on a piece of paper? The answer is infinite. For a moment, suppose that single point represents the Bible and that hundreds of those straight lines drawn through that point represent different interpretations of the Bible and that each of those interpretations represents a different church.

    “What happens, however, if on that piece of paper there is a second point representing the Book of Mormon? How many straight lines could you draw between these two reference points: the Bible and the Book of Mormon? Only one. Only one interpretation of Christ’s doctrines survives the testimony of these two witnesses” (“The Book of Mormon—a Book from God,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2011, 75).

    Improving Our Teaching

    Lead inspired discussions. Everyone has something to contribute to class discussions, but sometimes not everyone gets a chance. Look for ways to increase class members’ opportunities to share their testimonies. (See Teaching in the Savior’s Way, 33.)