“Lesson 10 Teacher Material: Following the Lord’s Living Prophets,” Foundations of the Restoration Teacher Material (2019)
“Lesson 10 Teacher Material,” Foundations of the Restoration Teacher Material
Display an image of the President of the Church, and ask students what they think and feel when they see this picture.
Display the following statement by Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles that is included in the preparation material:
Having prophets is a sign of God’s love for His children. (Ulisses Soares, “Prophets Speak by the Power of the Holy Spirit,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2018, 99)
In what ways are living prophets a sign of God’s love for His children? (Encourage students to recall what they studied in section 1 of the preparation material.)
Explain that on the day the Church was organized, the Prophet Joseph Smith received a revelation from the Lord with a commandment and promise to members of His Church. Read with students Doctrine and Covenants 21:4–5, looking for what the Lord commanded Church members to do.
What truth can we identify from the Lord’s commandment to the Saints? (Using students’ words, identify a truth similar to the following: The Lord commands us to receive the prophet’s words as if from His own mouth in patience and faith.)
Why might it sometimes take patience and faith to accept and heed the words of the prophet?
As a class or in small groups, invite students to read the following scenario and discuss the questions that follow:
While talking with a friend about a recent general conference, your friend tells you of her struggle to accept something taught by one of the Church leaders. “What should I do if I disagree with something a prophet has taught?” she asks.
Why can this be a challenging dilemma for a member of the Church?
What might you share with your friend to encourage her to act in patience and faith as she seeks to resolve her concern? (Encourage students to think about or review if needed what they learned in section 2 of the preparation material.)
What has helped you follow the Lord’s prophets in patience and with faith? Or what did you learn from a family member or friend you talked to about this question (as suggested in section 2 of the preparation material)?
Write on the board (or display) the following incomplete principle: As we heed the words of the Lord’s prophets in patience and faith …
Read with students Doctrine and Covenants 21:6, looking for the Lord’s promised blessing for following His prophets in patience and faith.
What do you think it means that the “the gates of hell shall not prevail against you”? that the Lord will “disperse the powers of darkness from before you”? that the heavens will “shake for your good”? (Write students’ responses on the board under the incomplete statement of principle.)
What are some recent teachings from the Lord’s prophets that can help protect us against the powers of darkness and cause the heavens to shake for our good? (Consider preparing a few examples to share.)
When has your willingness to follow the counsel of prophets in patience and faith led to some of these blessings?
Give students time to prayerfully ponder what they can do to follow the Lord’s prophets with greater patience and faith. This might include thinking about how they can more fully act on recent prophetic invitations and counsel. Invite students to record thoughts and impressions that come to them. Encourage them to act on promptings they receive from the Spirit.
Ask students to recall the experience with Hiram Page and his stone from their study of the preparation material.
What problems did Hiram Page’s alleged revelations cause for Church members?
Remind students that Hiram Page not only claimed to receive revelation for the Church, but his alleged revelations contradicted doctrine taught in the scriptures and the revelations previously received by Joseph Smith. Those who accepted Hiram Page’s revelations included members of the Whitmer family and Oliver Cowdery.
Read Doctrine and Covenants 28:1–7, looking for the Lord’s teachings to Oliver Cowdery and Church members. Point out that the “mysteries” mentioned in verse 7 refer to “spiritual truths known only by revelation” (Guide to the Scriptures, “Mysteries of God,” scriptures.ChurchofJesusChrist.org).
What truths can we learn from these verses about who can receive revelation for the entire Church? (Students may identify a variety of truths, including the following: Only those who hold keys to lead the Church are authorized to receive revelation and establish doctrine for the entire Church.)
How might understanding this truth help us avoid being deceived?
Explain that there is great consistency in the doctrine taught by the Lord’s chosen prophets throughout the Church’s history. However, some members may wonder what to do when they find a statement made in the past by a Church leader that seems inconsistent with doctrine taught today.
What principles can guide us in recognizing the Lord’s doctrine as taught by His living prophets? (You may want to invite students to review the statements by Elders D. Todd Christofferson and Neil L. Andersen in section 3 of the preparation material.)
As part of the discussion, you might share the following statement by President Russell M. Nelson:
You may not always understand every declaration of a living prophet. But when you know a prophet is a prophet, you can approach the Lord in humility and faith and ask for your own witness about whatever His prophet has proclaimed. (Russell M. Nelson, “Stand as True Millennials,” Ensign, Oct. 2016, 31)
Consider concluding the lesson by sharing your testimony of living prophets and the blessings of following them in patience and faith.
Explain that the next class will focus on a topic that President Russell M. Nelson has referred to as “the greatest challenge, the greatest cause, and the greatest work on earth today” (“Hope of Israel” [worldwide youth devotional, June 3, 2018], supplement to the New Era and Ensign, 4–5, ChurchofJesusChrist.org; italics in original). Invite students to study the preparation material for the next class and come prepared to discuss the purposes and blessings of taking part in the great cause and work of gathering Israel.