“March 9–15. Jacob 1–4: ‘Be Reconciled unto God through the Atonement of Christ,’” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: Book of Mormon 2020 (2020)
“March 9–15. Jacob 1–4,” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: 2020
Record Your Impressions
To help class members share insights from Jacob 1–4, you could pass out slips of paper and invite class members to write a scripture reference from these chapters that they found meaningful. Put the slips into a container, draw out a few, and invite the people who wrote the references to share their insights.
You might begin a discussion about Jacob’s diligent labors among his people by asking class members to share experiences when they were blessed by the service of a Church leader. Or consider asking a local Church leader—past or present—to talk about a time when he or she felt inspired to serve someone. Class members could then find words and phrases in Jacob 1:6–8, 15–19; 2:1–11; and 4:18 that help us understand how Jacob felt about his calling and the people he served. How have we seen our leaders magnify their callings? What do these verses suggest about the way we should sustain our leaders?
The Lord had strong warnings for the Nephites about pride. To help begin a discussion on this topic, you could contact a few class members in advance and ask them to look for ways the adversary promotes the love of riches in our world today. Then invite them to share with the class what they noticed. Class members could work in pairs to read Jacob 2:12–21 and find what the Lord taught about how we should view material wealth. They could then create and share a poster that promotes that principle. Provide time for class members to ponder individually what they can do to apply what they learn from Jacob’s message.
Your class members could review Jacob 2:12–21 and write their own questions to add to Elder Perry’s list in “Additional Resources.” What does Elder Perry’s statement add to our understanding of Jacob’s teachings?
Elder David A. Bednar taught that we live “in a world that increasingly mocks the sanctity of procreation and minimizes the worth of human life” (“We Believe in Being Chaste,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2013, 41–44). How might you help class members use Jacob 2:23–35 to counteract the world’s messages about chastity? One way might be to write on the board How does the Lord feel about chastity? and invite class members to find answers to the question. Some of them could search Jacob 2:23–35, and the others could search Elder Bednar’s talk referenced above. They could list on the board the answers they find. To discuss standards and blessings associated with living the law of chastity, you might review “Sexual Purity” (For the Strength of Youth, 35–37) or show one of the videos listed in “Additional Resources.” What are the blessings of living a chaste life?
Jacob wanted us to know that even though he and his people lived hundreds of years before the Savior’s mortal ministry, they knew of Him and looked to Him for salvation. According to Jacob 4:4–5, why did the Nephites keep the law of Moses? What do we have in our day that points our souls to the Savior? What symbols or similitudes did Jacob use to teach about Jesus Christ? (see also Genesis 22:1–13).
Has anyone in your class recently had an eye exam? If so, you might ask this person to describe how the doctor assessed his or her vision. Class members could share what they think it means to be spiritually blind. How is spiritual blindness similar to physical blindness? Invite class members to suggest ways we can assess whether we are spiritually blind. They could also review Jacob 4:8–18 and suggest some things we can do to increase our ability to “see” spiritual things.
Elder Quentin L. Cook outlined four ways people might look “beyond the mark” in our day (see “Additional Resources”). What do his words add to our understanding of Jacob 4:13–15? What does it mean to look beyond the mark? How can we avoid looking beyond the mark?
Referring to Jacob 2:13–19, Elder L. Tom Perry taught: “We need to take Jacob’s counsel to heart. We should read this scripture as though it were written expressly for us in these days, because it was. His words should cause us to ask soul-searching questions of ourselves. Is the order of things right in our own lives? Are we investing, first and foremost, in the things that are eternal in nature? Do we have an eternal perspective? Or have we fallen into the trap of investing in the things of this world first and then forgetting the Lord?” (“United in Building the Kingdom of God,” Ensign, May 1987, 34).
“I Choose to Be Pure”
“Chastity: What Are the Limits?”
“Law of Chastity”
Elder Quentin L. Cook taught how we might look “beyond the mark”:
“Some people seem to be embarrassed by the simplicity of the Savior’s message. They want to add complexity and even obscurity to the truth to make it more intellectually challenging or more compatible with current academic trends. … We look beyond the mark when we refuse to accept simple gospel truths for what they are.”
“We are looking beyond the mark when we elevate any one principle, no matter how worthwhile it may be, to a prominence that lessens our commitment to other equally important principles or when we take a position that is contrary to the teachings of the Brethren.”
“Some members profess that they would commit themselves with enthusiasm if given some great calling, but they do not find home teaching or visiting teaching [now called ministering] worthy of or sufficiently heroic for their sustained effort.”
“Those who are committed to following rules without reference to doctrine and principle are particularly susceptible to looking beyond the mark” (“Looking beyond the Mark,” Ensign or Liahona, Mar. 2003, 42–44).