LDS Gospel Doctrine Lesson 4: “Remember the New Covenant, Even the Book of Mormon”
(If I were doing this lesson, I would talk about my own kids and my experience with them. If you have kids, you can use your own experience or talk about kids in general. If you are teaching an adult class they will have kids who will have done this and you can ask how they react. If you are teaching a youth class they may have siblings who act like this, or you can talk about how they may still act like this. Whichever way you choose, just have fun with it.)
A three year old wants a drink of milk. What will that three year old do to get milk. (Ask a parent for it, unless they try to get it themselves! But try to go with ask for it.) The child is told to wait for 5 minutes. How long before the child asks again? (Usually about 5 seconds) What does the child do if ignored? If given the full 5 minutes how many times will the child ask for milk? (Again, have fun with this. Give examples, ask for examples of having seen this.) How long will the parent last before just giving in? How does this story change if the child is asking for something that is potentially harmful? Do parents ever just give in and let them have it or let them do it even though the parent knows it could turn out bad? Does Heavenly Father ever do that? Lead here into the story of Joseph Smith giving the manuscript to Martin Harris.
“This story of Joseph Smith giving the manuscript to Martin Harris teaches us great doctrines about God and Satan. Today we will talk about each of these contrasting doctrines.” Have the following verses written on the board. (Feel free to add any others that you like.)
Have class members get through as many as possible in 3 minutes to identify the doctrine regarding God and Satan. You may want to split the class up so that you make sure that most of the verses get read. You can also do this as a handout if you don’t want to write it all on the board. Discuss answers to these verses for as long as you would like. This could take the whole time, or you could shorten it down to only talk about 2-3 each for God and Satan. The main points to make sure the class understands is that Satan will try to deceive and bring about unhappiness and that God will always protect and help us. This is also a good time to talk about God forgiving us. (He forgives Joseph for his mistakes.) Another important point is that God does have expectations for us and commandments that we are required to obey. You can really end the lesson after discussing these doctrines if you want it to take the whole time, or you can move to the final point.
“Joseph learned an important lesson in this experience (giving the manuscript to Martin Harris). He learned that when we follow what God has asked us to do, our lives are better than if we don’t. Lets look at one thing that God has asked us to do. We can then discuss how our lives are better for following it. Turn to D&C 84:54-58 to see what God is asking us to do.” This will lead right into application.
“How has studying the Book of Mormon helped you to understand the same principle that Joseph Smith learned, that if we follow what God has asked us to do our lives are better than if we don’t?”