“December 2–8. 1–3 John; Jude: ‘God Is Love’” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: New Testament 2019 (2019)
“December 2–8. 1–3 John; Jude,” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: 2019
Record Your Impressions
Invite several class members to share themes or specific truths that stood out to them as they studied the Epistles of John and Jude. What messages from these epistles were most relevant to them and their families?
How can you help those you teach recognize Heavenly Father’s light and love in their lives? You might begin by writing the words light and love on the board. Ask class members to share the first words that come to mind when they think of these two words. You could divide the class into groups and assign each group one of the following scripture passages: 1 John 1:5–10; 2:3–11; 3:1–3; 4:7–12; 4:16–21; 5:1–3. The groups could search these verses for evidences of God’s light and love and for things we can do to show our love for God and His children. Members from each group could then share with the class what they found. You could also invite class members to share experiences when they have felt Heavenly Father’s light and love.
How can you help class members ponder spiritual light in their lives? You could invite class members to look at a ceiling light or the light coming through a window and share what they know about physical light. How is physical light like spiritual light? Perhaps you could search Psalm 27:1; John 1:4–5; 1 John 1:5–7; 3 Nephi 11:11; Doctrine and Covenants 88:6–13 and look for additional insights into how God and His Son provide light in our lives. Class members could also share experiences when they sought and received spiritual light in their lives.
Class members might enjoy singing together or listening to a song about light, such as “The Lord Is My Light” (Hymns, no. 89). What does the song teach about how the Lord is like a light? The video “Choose the Light” (LDS.org) and the statement by Elder Robert D. Hales in “Additional Resources” could offer further insights about how to gain greater light in our lives.
Some of your class members or their loved ones may be struggling to confront false teachings that threaten their faith. It might help them to learn what John and Jude taught about apostasy. Consider inviting half of the class to search for descriptions of false teachings or apostasy in 1 John 2:18–23, 26–28; 4:3; 2 John 1:7–11; 3 John 1:9–11 and the other half to search for such descriptions in Jude. Or they could look for answers to questions like these: How do John and Jude define an antichrist? (see also Guide to the Scriptures, “Antichrist,” scriptures.lds.org). Is there anything in these verses that seems especially applicable to challenges we face today? How can we fortify ourselves against false teachings?
Jude uses interesting imagery to describe false teachers, or those who “speak evil of those things which they know not” (Jude 1:10). You might invite a few class members to draw on the board some of the images described in Jude 1:12–13 while other class members guess which phrase the person is drawing. How do these images represent false teachers and antichrists? For example, how do corrupt practices create “spots in [our] feasts of charity”? What can we do to fortify ourselves against “mockers”? (see Jude 1:18–21). Why might Jude have suggested that we “have compassion” (Jude 1:22) on those who mock the gospel?
One of this week’s activities in Come, Follow Me—For Individuals and Families suggests searching 1 John 5 to discover how we can overcome the world. Perhaps you could invite class members to share what they found and write it on the board. (You may want to give them some time in class to briefly review the chapter.) Or you could invite the class to read portions of Elder Neil L. Andersen’s message “Overcoming the World” (Ensign or Liahona, May 2017, 58–62) and share what they learn. For example, what insights do they gain from the stories Elder Andersen shares about President David O. McKay and Elder Bruce D. Porter? Maybe class members could share their own examples of people who they feel have made efforts to overcome the world.
There are probably people in your class who can relate to what John was feeling when he said that he had “no greater joy” than hearing that Gaius (one of his “children”) was walking in truth. Class members might benefit from hearing each other’s experiences. Maybe you could start by reading together 3 John 1:1–4 and the scriptures in “Additional Resources.” What do these scriptures teach us about the source of true joy? Class members could talk about how they have felt as parents, missionaries, Church leaders, or teachers when they knew that the people they taught were walking in truth. You might contact a few class members before class and ask them to bring pictures of people they helped bring unto Christ and tell about their experiences.
How can symbols such as dragons, winged beasts, and slain lambs teach us about God’s plan for His children? Invite class members to think about this question as they study Revelation over the next few weeks.
Elder Robert D. Hales taught how we can dispel darkness from our lives and walk in light:
“When I was a boy, I used to ride my bicycle home from basketball practice at night. I would connect a small pear-shaped generator to my bicycle tire. Then as I pedaled, the tire would turn a tiny rotor, which produced electricity and emitted a single, welcome beam of light. It was a simple but effective mechanism. But I had to pedal to make it work! I learned quickly that if I stopped pedaling my bicycle, the light would go out. I also learned that when I was ‘anxiously engaged’ [D&C 58:27] in pedaling, the light would become brighter and the darkness in front of me would be dispelled.
“The generation of spiritual light comes from daily spiritual pedaling. It comes from praying, studying the scriptures, fasting, and serving—from living the gospel and obeying the commandments” (“Out of Darkness into His Marvelous Light,” Ensign, May 2002, 71).