“April 29–May 5. John 7–10: ‘I Am the Good Shepherd’” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: New Testament 2019 (2019)
“April 29–May 5. John 7–10,” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: 2019
Record Your Impressions
Remind class members about the importance of making their homes the center of gospel learning. What passages from John 7–10 did class members discuss with their families during the week? What messages were most helpful to them?
Throughout John 7–10, the Savior made several declarations that can help class members better understand His mission and draw closer to Him. Consider inviting class members to read the following scripture passages and share what they teach about the Savior’s divine mission. How does Christ fulfill these roles in our lives?
John 7:37–39: “If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink”
John 9:8–10, 35–38: “The Son of God”
John 10:7–9: “The door”
John 10:11–14: “The good shepherd”
Class members may better understand how living a commandment builds a testimony if they compare this pattern to the process of learning a skill through personal experience. For example, you could invite class members who know how to juggle or play a musical instrument to explain how they developed these skills. How did practicing on their own teach them more than merely watching someone else perform the skill? As a class, discuss how the effort involved in learning a skill compares to the spiritual pattern the Savior described in John 7:14–17. What experiences can class members share about following this pattern to gain spiritual knowledge?
How can you illustrate the truths taught in John 7:14–17? One idea is to ask members of your class to share experiences in which they gained a testimony of a gospel truth by living it. The account related by Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson in “Additional Resources” is also a good example. Give class members time to think of a gospel principle they would like to gain stronger testimonies of, and then encourage them to set specific goals to live that principle more fully.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland observed: “Some in the contemporary world suffer from a distressing misconception of [God the Father]. … Many moderns say they might feel comfortable in the arms of Jesus, but they are uneasy contemplating the stern encounter of God” (“The Grandeur of God,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2003, 71). What do the Savior’s words in John 8:18–19, 26–29 teach about the connection between Him and His Father? After reading and discussing these verses, class members could list on the board some things Jesus did, said, or taught. What do we learn about God the Father from these things?
To those who feel condemned because of their sins, the story of the Savior offering mercy and repentance to the woman taken in adultery could be a source of encouragement. Or, if class members feel tempted to condemn others because of their sins, the story could serve as a warning. You could invite them to read John 8:1–11, looking for answers to questions like the following: What does this story teach about the Savior’s mercy? How might receiving His mercy when we sin help us when we feel tempted to judge others? (see Alma 29:9–10). You could also show the video “Go and Sin No More” (LDS.org).
To help class members find personal relevance in John 8:1–11, consider dividing the class into three groups—one to focus on the words and actions of the Pharisees, one to focus on the words and actions of the Savior, and one to focus on the words and actions of the woman. Invite each group to make a list of the spiritual truths they learn from reading each part of the account.
Sometimes we aren’t aware of ways in which we judge others. Here’s an activity to help class members overcome this tendency: Ask the class to help you create a list of ways we judge people (on their appearance, their behavior, their background, and so on). Give class members pieces of paper cut in the shape of a stone, and ask them to select a way of judging others that they feel they are guilty of and write it on a paper stone. What do we learn from the Savior’s words to the Pharisees in John 8:1–11? Invite the class to write on the other side of their paper stones something that will remind them not to judge (perhaps a phrase from John 8).
Ask class members to think of a time when they lost something that was valuable to them. In the scriptures for next week’s lesson, they will learn how Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ feel about those that are lost.
Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson said:
“The Savior taught, ‘If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself’ [John 7:17]. Sometimes we try to do it backward. For example, we may take this approach: I will be happy to live the law of tithing, but first I need to know that it’s true. Maybe we even pray to gain a testimony of the law of tithing and hope the Lord will bless us with that testimony before we have ever filled out a tithing slip. It just doesn’t work that way. The Lord expects us to exercise faith. We have to consistently pay a full and honest tithe in order to gain a testimony of tithing. …
“I would like to share an example of how living a principle helps us become converted to that principle. … My parents and teachers at church had impressed upon me the value of treating my body with respect, keeping a clear mind, and most of all, learning to trust in the Lord’s commandments. I made the decision to avoid situations where I knew alcohol would be present and to stay clear of tobacco and drugs. It often meant I was not included at parties, and I rarely dated. Drug use was becoming more and more common among young people, and the dangers were not as well known as they are today. Many of my peers later suffered permanent damage from mind-altering drugs or got caught up in serious addictions. I was grateful to have been taught to live the Word of Wisdom in my home, and I gained a deep testimony of that principle of the gospel as I exercised faith and lived it. The good feeling that came to me from living a true gospel principle was the Spirit of the Holy Ghost confirming that the principle was true” (“Be Ye Converted,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2013, 77).