“Home-Study Lesson: Doctrine and Covenants 88–89 (Unit 19)” Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Seminary Teacher Manual (2013)
“Home-Study Lesson: Unit 19,” Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Seminary Teacher Manual
This lesson can help students recognize the value in teaching the gospel to others. As they teach each other some of the principles they studied during the week, they will have a chance to experience some principles that the Lord taught to those who attended the School of the Prophets.
Note: As students studied the scripture mastery passage in Doctrine and Covenants 88:124 this week, they were invited to memorize it and recite it when they attend seminary and other Church classes. This invitation was meant to help them remember that doing righteous actions and ceasing unrighteous ones will help us to learn and be edified. You may want to remind students of this and invite them to recite the passage together. You could also encourage them to live the counsel given in the passage.
Invite a student to come to the front of the class and teach another student how to do a simple task, such as tying a necktie (or a different task that the second student does not know how to do). Ask students to raise their hands if they have helped teach a lesson or skill to someone else recently. Ask a few of those who raised their hands to describe what they taught and to whom. Follow up by asking the following questions:
What did you learn by preparing to teach and by teaching someone else?
Why do you think we often learn more from preparing to teach than from being taught by others?
Remind students that the Lord gave the revelation in Doctrine and Covenants 88 over several days at the end of December 1832 and the beginning of January 1833 to a group of priesthood holders who had prayed to know the Lord’s will concerning the establishment of Zion. In this revelation, the Lord referred to this group of priesthood holders as “the first laborers in this last kingdom” (D&C 88:70, 74) and commanded them to organize and attend a school to prepare themselves to preach the gospel among the nations of the earth (see D&C 88:74, 84, 127).
Invite a student to read Doctrine and Covenants 88:73–76 aloud. Ask the class to follow along, looking for what the Lord commanded these priesthood holders to do to prepare to teach others.
What were these “first laborers” commanded to do to prepare to teach others as missionaries? (You may want to ask a student to act as scribe and write students’ answers on the board.)
What could we do to “organize,” “prepare,” and “sanctify” ourselves to become more effective at sharing the gospel?
How does being cleansed from sin influence our ability to share the gospel?
Invite a student to read Doctrine and Covenants 88:77–80 aloud. Ask the class to follow along, looking for what the Lord commanded these priesthood holders to do as they met together. Ask students to report what they found.
What did the Lord promise those who teach diligently? (He promised that His grace would attend them and they would be taught more perfectly in all that they needed to understand pertaining to the kingdom of God.)
What does it mean that the Lord’s “grace shall attend you” (D&C 88:78)? (The Lord will help us as we seek diligently to teach and learn the gospel.)
From what you learned in verses 77–78, how would you state a principle about teaching? (Students may identify a number of principles. After they respond, you may want to write the following principles on the board: As we teach one another diligently, the Lord will help us understand His truths more perfectly. By teaching one another, we can prepare to share the gospel with others.)
In what ways has teaching the gospel to others helped you to better understand it?
According to verse 79, what other topics are important for us to understand? How can gaining such broad knowledge help us teach the gospel to others?
Note: The following activity is written for groups of four students to prepare and teach each other in pairs. If your class is small, you could have the students prepare and teach individually, or you could have the class teach you one of the lessons and then you could teach them the other lesson.
Explain to the students that you want to help them feel the importance of and apply the two principles of teaching they identified. Divide the class into groups of four students. Ask two students in each group to work together using their scriptures and scripture study journals to prepare to teach Doctrine and Covenants 88:63–68 to the other two students. Ask the other two students to work together to prepare to teach the scripture mastery passage in Doctrine and Covenants 89:18–21 to the first two students.
Give copies of the following instructions to each of the groups. Ask them to read through the instructions and scripture verses and then decide how they will teach each lesson. (Encourage both of the students in each pair to participate in the teaching.) Explain that each pair will have about 8–10 minutes to prepare and about 5 minutes to teach their lessons.
After students have had sufficient time to prepare, invite the pair assigned Doctrine and Covenants 88:63–68 to teach the other students in their group. Then ask the students to switch roles, and invite the companionship assigned Doctrine and Covenants 89:18–21 to teach.
After the students have taught each other, point to the following principle on the board: “As we teach one another diligently, the Lord will help us understand His truths more perfectly.” Then ask the class the following questions:
How was your understanding of these scriptures deepened as you taught them to someone else today?
In what ways did you feel that the Lord helped you?
Encourage students to find opportunities to teach others the gospel. Testify of the blessings they will receive for doing so.
To prepare students for their study during the coming week, you may want to invite them to consider the following: What has the Lord set forth as the qualifications for seeing His face? What are the blessings of being “pure in heart” (D&C 97:16) when you attend the temple? Have you ever wondered what it means to worship God? In your study this next week, watch for whom we worship and how we worship.