“Unit 2: Day 3, Moses 3 (Genesis 2; Abraham 5)” Old Testament Study Guide for Home-Study Seminary Students (2014)
“Unit 2: Day 3,” Old Testament Study Guide
In Moses 3, the Lord revealed that after the six periods of creation were complete, He rested from His labors. He also revealed that He created all things spiritually before they were created physically upon the earth. Finally, the Lord taught about the relationship of Adam and Eve as husband and wife. Moses 3 is the Joseph Smith Translation of Genesis 2. (Although not all of Genesis 2 is specifically covered in this lesson, you should read it as part of your daily scripture study. You should also read Abraham 5. As you compare Genesis 2; Moses 3; and Abraham 5, you will see a harmony in these scriptural accounts of the Creation.)
Which day of the week do you enjoy more than any other? Why?
The phrase “blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it” (Moses 3:3) means that God made the seventh day sacred or holy. For Him it was a day of rest. God later commanded His children to rest on the Sabbath day.
From these verses we can learn the following principle about how we should treat the Sabbath day: We can keep the Sabbath day holy as we rest from our labors and focus on sacred things.
- Answer the following questions in your scripture study journal:
What are some ways we can focus on sacred things on the Sabbath?
How do you feel you have been blessed by resting from your labors on the Sabbath day and focusing on sacred things?
Ponder ways you can more fully sanctify the Sabbath day. You may want to write a goal and place it where it can remind you to apply this principle on Sunday.
Mark whether you think the following statements are true (T) or false (F):
We lived in heaven as spirit children of God before we were born on earth.
Plants and animals were created spiritually in heaven before they were created physically on the earth.
Some forms of life on the earth are not creations of God.
Read Moses 3:4–7, looking for words or phrases that indicate whether the statements above are true or false.
Elder Bruce R. McConkie of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught: “This earth, all men [and women], animals, fish, fowls, plants, all things—all lived first as spirit entities. Their home was heaven, and the earth was created to be the place where they could take upon themselves mortality” (“Christ and the Creation,” Ensign, June 1982, 13).
- In your scripture study journal, summarize what you have learned from Moses 3:4–7 as a statement of doctrine. You might also want to write it in your scriptures.
How many of the true/false questions above did you answer correctly? (Statements 1 and 2 are true; statement 3 is false.)
We learn in Moses 3:8–17 that after the Lord created Adam physically, He placed him in the Garden of Eden. He also planted two trees in Eden that were especially significant—the tree of life and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. In the next lesson you will study Moses 3:16–17 and learn more about these two trees.
- In your scripture study journal, write what you might say if a friend who is not a member of the Church asked you to explain the Church’s views on marriage and family.
Moses 3 contains additional information about the creation of Adam and Eve that can help you understand and explain the Lord’s teachings on marriage and family.
In Moses 3:18–21, the Lord discussed the time between the physical creation of Adam and the physical creation of Eve. Read Moses 3:18, looking for what the Lord said about Adam before Eve had been placed on the earth.
Why do you think it was “not good that the man should be alone”?
What would have happened to Heavenly Father’s plan of happiness if Adam had remained alone?
Read Moses 3:20–23, looking for what Heavenly Father did so that His plan of happiness could move forward.
Notice the reference to Adam’s rib in verse 21. Concerning this, President Spencer W. Kimball taught, “The story of the rib, of course, is figurative” (“The Blessings and Responsibilities of Womanhood,” Ensign, Mar. 1976, 71).
Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke of the symbolism of the rib in the account of Eve’s creation: “The rib, coming as it does from the side, seems to denote partnership. The rib signifies neither dominion nor subservience, but a lateral relationship as partners, to work and to live, side by side” (“Lessons from Eve,” Ensign, Nov. 1987, 87).
Turn to Genesis 2:24–25. These verses correspond to Moses 3:24–25. Read Genesis 2:24–25, looking for a doctrine we can learn from this account of Adam and Eve. (Genesis 2:24 is a scripture mastery passage. You may want to mark it in a distinctive way. Remembering its location can help you show others where to find this important doctrine about marriage in their Bibles.)
You may want to write the following doctrine in your scriptures near Genesis 2:24: Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God.
Based on your understanding of Heavenly Father’s plan of happiness, why do you think God has ordained that marriage be between a man and a woman?
As you read the following statement from Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, look for insights that help you understand why God has ordained that marriage be between a man and a woman:
“Two compelling doctrinal reasons help us to understand why eternal marriage is essential to the Father’s plan.
“Reason 1: The natures of male and female spirits complete and perfect each other, and therefore men and women are intended to progress together toward exaltation.
“… For divine purposes, male and female spirits are different, distinctive, and complementary.
“… The unique combination of spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional capacities of both males and females were needed to implement the plan of happiness. Alone, neither the man nor the woman could fulfill the purposes of his or her creation.
“By divine design, men and women are intended to progress together toward perfection and a fulness of glory. Because of their distinctive temperaments and capacities, males and females each bring to a marriage relationship unique perspectives and experiences. The man and the woman contribute differently but equally to a oneness and a unity that can be achieved in no other way. The man completes and perfects the woman and the woman completes and perfects the man as they learn from and mutually strengthen and bless each other. ‘Neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord’ (1 Corinthians 11:11; italics added).
“Reason 2: By divine design, both a man and a woman are needed to bring children into mortality and to provide the best setting for the rearing and nurturing of children. …
“A home with a loving and loyal husband and wife is the supreme setting in which children can be reared in love and righteousness and in which the spiritual and physical needs of children can be met. Just as the unique characteristics of both males and females contribute to the completeness of a marriage relationship, so those same characteristics are vital to the rearing, nurturing, and teaching of children” (“Marriage Is Essential to His Eternal Plan,” Ensign, June 2006, 83–84).
- Answer the following question in your scripture study journal: What insights did you gain from Elder Bednar’s statement that help you understand why God has ordained that marriage is between a man and a woman?
Notice that in Moses 3:18 and 20 the Lord used the term help meet to refer to Eve. You may want to mark this term in your scriptures. The term help meet means a companion in equal and full partnership. From this we can learn that husband and wife are to be equal partners.
- Answer the following questions in your scripture study journal:
In what ways can a husband and wife be equal partners?
Think about a married couple you know who is a good example of equal partnership in their marriage. Why do you feel they are a good example?
For your third journal assignment in this lesson, you wrote how you would explain your beliefs about marriage and family. You may want to add to your explanation based on what you learned from your study of Moses 3.
- In your scripture study journal, write what you are doing to prepare to be a righteous husband or wife one day. Then try to memorize Genesis 2:24 by reciting it a few times aloud.
- Write the following at the bottom of today’s assignments in your scripture study journal:
Additional questions, thoughts, and insights I would like to share with my teacher: