“Lesson 14 Teacher Material: The Lord Reveals Additional Scripture,” Foundations of the Restoration Teacher Material (2019)
“Lesson 14 Teacher Material,” Foundations of the Restoration Teacher Material
Invite students to imagine that a friend sincerely asks, “Why does your church have more scriptures than the Bible? I thought the Bible contained all of God’s word.” Ask students to raise their hands if they have been asked a question like this. Invite a few students to share how they answered (or how they would answer).
Explain that the Book of Mormon contains a record written by Nephi of a vision where he saw the words of the Bible going forth to the world. He also saw that many “plain” and “precious” (1 Nephi 13:26) parts of the Savior’s gospel were taken from the Bible (see 1 Nephi 13:24–26).
Read 1 Nephi 13:38–41 as a class, looking for what records Nephi saw that would be available to people in the latter days. You might pause after each verse and let students explain what records Nephi is referring to. For example, the “other books” referred to in verse 39 include the Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, Pearl of Great Price, and Joseph Smith Translation of the Bible.
According to verses 40 and 41, what are the purposes of these additional scriptures revealed through Joseph Smith? (Using students’ responses, identify a truth such as the following: Through Joseph Smith, the Lord revealed additional scripture that confirms the truths of the Bible, restores plain and precious truths, and helps bring people unto Jesus Christ.)
To help deepen students’ understanding of this truth, consider using some of the following teaching ideas to facilitate student sharing and discussion.
Remind students that at a meeting in 1831, Joseph Smith and several elders decided to publish the revelations received up to that time. During the meeting, the Lord revealed His own preface to the Book of Commandments (now the Doctrine and Covenants) through Joseph Smith. This preface is Doctrine and Covenants 1.
Give students a minute to review Doctrine and Covenants 1:17, 21–23, 37 from the preparation material. Invite them to look for what the Lord taught about the revelations (referred to as “commandments” in the text). Invite students to share what they found.
In section 2 of the preparation material, students were asked to locate a passage of scripture from the Doctrine and Covenants that has strengthened their faith in Jesus Christ. Provide time for students to share their passages with each other. You might do this activity in small groups or as a class. They could also share their answers to the following question with each other:
In what ways do these passages confirm the truth of the Bible, restore plain and precious truths, or bring us closer to Jesus Christ?
Invite a student to read aloud Joseph Smith’s statement about the Bible found in section 3 of the preparation material. Explain that through Joseph Smith’s translation of the Bible the Lord restored many of the plain and precious truths that had been lost.
As part of their class preparation, students studied explanations of what the Joseph Smith Translation and the Pearl of Great Price are. Ask a few students to summarize what they learned about each book.
If needed, remind students that portions of the Joseph Smith Translation are included in the Pearl of Great Price as the books of Moses and Joseph Smith—Matthew. Other inspired revisions can be found in the footnotes and appendix of some editions of the Bible, in the Guide to the Scriptures, and on scriptures.ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Consider asking students to open to whichever resource is available to them to ensure that they are familiar with how to access these scriptures.
Display the list of scripture passages from the books of Moses and Abraham and the Joseph Smith Translation found in section 3 of the preparation material. Ask students to briefly review the scripture passages that they selected on their own or from the list.
After you give them a minute to review, invite students to share with a partner what plain and precious truths these scriptures teach or how they deepen their knowledge of Jesus Christ and His gospel. You may also want to share with the class your testimony of latter-day scripture and its impact in your life.
Display the following image, and explain that it is a fragment of the Egyptian papyri that Joseph Smith once had.
What questions have arisen from the study of the existing papyri fragments? (Invite students to recall what they learned from section 4 of the preparation material.)
What would you share with someone who had general concerns about the book of Abraham translation?
As students answer the preceding question, you might use one or more of the follow-up questions below to continue the discussion. As part of the discussion, provide opportunity for students to consider what they read in the preparation material and ask any questions they have about the book of Abraham.
What do you do when you are unable to find specific answers to gospel questions, such as those about the book of Abraham?
What are some evidences that have surfaced since the publication of the book of Abraham that support its authenticity? (See “The Book of Abraham and the Ancient World” in section 4 of the preparation material.)
What would you suggest to someone as the most reliable way to determine the truthfulness of the book of Abraham? Why?
Conclude by giving students an opportunity to share their favorite scripture passages from the book of Abraham and to testify of that book and of other scripture of the Restoration.
Ask students to consider how they tend to think about themselves. Invite them to also consider their potential influence in this life and in the eternities. Encourage students to come prepared next time to discuss restored truths about God’s plan for them and their futures.