Lesson 30: Nephi Receives Great Power

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Lesson 30
Nephi Receives Great Power

Preparation
• Items needed: a small lamp, chalk and eraser, scriptures for each child, a ball of yarn or string, a picture of Jesus, tape, a table easel, several sheets of cardstock paper, a bag or container for the game questions, scissors, and double-sided removable tape. Optional: Print the “Example Image” found in the lesson, and bring an example priesthood line of authority to show.
• Print the standing story figures onto white cardstock. Cut them out and fold the bottom tab forward. Be prepared to tape the figures standing up onto half sheets of cardstock as shown in the picture above.
• Print the activity and game items. Cut out the scripture reference cards and the game review questions. Fold the question strips in half. Put each set of items into a bag or container.
• Print the scripture story question pages. (The pictures that go in the boxed areas on the flipchart are in the scripture story visual aid file. They can be printed, cut out, and glued onto their appropriate spots. The last picture page in the file is to be used in another part of the lesson. Do not cut the pictures out.) Make the question pages into a flipchart by punching a hole on both sides of the top of all the pages, and then attaching the pages together with metal rings or ribbon through the holes.
• Cut fourteen, ¾ inch strips of cardstock. Cover each scripture reference on the flipchart with the strips using double-sided removable tape.

 

Attention Activity

Show the children the unplugged lamp you brought. Ask a child to turn it on.

• What needs to happen for the lamp to work? It needs to be plugged into a power outlet.

• Where does the power outlet draws its energy from? A power plant. Explain that all electrical lines from the outlet to the power plant must be connected in order for us to access that power. (Show Example Image)

Explain that this lesson is about another form of power. Through this power the world we live on and the universe we live in was formed and brought to pass.

• Can anyone guess what this power is? (The priesthood – the power and authority of God)

• How can this priesthood power be accessed on earth? Worthy men have the priesthood conferred upon them to act in God’s name.

• What does it mean to act in the name of God? (To do the things Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ would do.)

• What are some of the good things Jesus Christ did on earth? (He was baptized, healed the sick, made the blind see, blessed the children, prepared the sacrament, and so on.) Can these things be done today? Yes. The Lord made it possible for men to act in his name so His church (the kingdom of God on the earth) could be administered and governed on the earth.

• How is the priesthood confered upon a worthy man or young man? It is given by the laying on of hands by someone who has the authority to confer the priesthood and ordain the priesthood holder to a specific office in the priesthood.

• How did men in the church get this authority to perform these ordinations? Remind the children what they learned at the beginning of the lesson, that all electrical lines must be connected to a main power source. Explain that all priesthood holders must have their lines of authority traced back to the person who has the authority and power to govern the administration of the priesthood on the earth.

• Who has this power and authority? Jesus Christ. “Jesus Christ is the great High Priest of God; Christ is therefore the source of all true priesthood authority and power on this earth (Heb. 5:5-10)”. (Encyclopedia of Mormonism- Priesthood)

Picture Display
When Jesus Christ lived on the earth, he laid his hands on the heads of his apostles (tape the standing figures of Jesus and the kneeling apostles onto one of the pieces of cardstock) and gave them the priesthood (the power and authority to act in God’s name). After the apostles died, this authority was eventually taken from the earth. In 1829 Peter, James, and John, the same apostles who received their authority from Jesus Christ, conferred the Melchizedek priesthood upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery (tape the standing figures of the apostles and the kneeling figure of Joseph Smith on the other piece of cardstock). (April 1990 Friend)

Through the restoration of the priesthood to the earth by authorized servants of God, the Church of Jesus Christ was also restored to the earth. Jesus Christ directs his church through the living prophet who has been given all the keys of the priesthood

Explain that in today’s lesson they will learn about a Book of Mormon prophet who used the priesthood power and authority he was given  to help his people repent.

Scripture Story Activity
Give each child one or two scripture reference cards. Tell them to look up their scripture and read it to themselves. Explain that you are going to ask some questions, one at a time, and they will need to decide if their scripture answers the question. The question will be on a flipchart to help them with the process. (Put the flipchart on the easel.) If they think they have the correct scripture, they can come up and check under the cover strip to see if they are right. If it is correct that person will tell the class what the answer is. (Add any parts of the answer the child leaves out, and add any discussion that goes with the question as listed below.) (Optional Idea: Let the other children try and guess what the answer is before it is given.)

Before starting the activity, quickly review a little of the scripture story from last week’s lesson, and then ask the children if they think the great miracle that Nephi performed, in telling the people about the murder of the chief judge, influenced the Nephites to change their lives? (Read Helaman 10:13) Explain that most of the people remained unrepentant and wicked.

As Nephi headed home he was very sad. He pondered on the wickedness of the people and the events that had occurred.

1. What occurred as Nephi was pondering? (Helaman 10:3) A voice spoke to him.

• What does it mean to ponder? (To think about and consider.) The scriptures tell us that many prophets received revelation from the Lord as they were pondering upon the things of God. We also open ourselves up to revelation as we ponder upon our problems during scripture study, during church meetings, and during our prayers.

2. The Lord told Nephi that He was pleased with him. What was there about Nephi that pleased Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ? (Helaman 10:4) (Write the answers on the board.) Unweayringness in declaring the word of God, seeking for the will of God in all things, and keeping the commandments.

• What does unwearyingness mean? It means being faithfully diligent.

3. What blessings was Nephi promised because of his faithfulness? (Helaman 10:5–7) (Write the answers on the board.)

o Blessed forever – What does it mean to be blessed forever?
o Make him mighty in word, deed, and works. All things done according to his words.
o Power over the people to smite them because of their wickedness.
o Sealing power (Read Helaman 10:7) What is the sealing power Nephi was given? “The sealing power is the priesthood power given to authorized servants of the Lord to perform certain acts on earth and have them recognized or validated in heaven”. (Quote from Encyclopedia of Mormonism -Sealing)   How can this sealing power of the priesthood bless us today? (In the temple our families can be sealed together forever.)

• Why did the Lord trust Nephi with such great power? (See Helaman10:5) He would not ask for anything contrary to God’s will.

4. After declaring these great promises and blessings upon Nephi, what did the Lord command Nephi to go and do? (Helaman 10:11) Declare to the people that except they repent they shall be smitten with destruction.

5. How did Nephi show his obedience when the Lord finished speaking to him? (Helaman 10:12, 17) Nephi immediately went to declare the word of God to the people. He went forth from multitude to multitude until he had declared the word of God to all.

6. How did the people respond to the message Nephi delivered? (Helaman 10:15) They would not listen, and they hardened their hearts. They reviled against him and did seek to lay their hands upon him that they might cast him into prison.

7. How was Nephi protected as he declared the word of God to the people? (Helaman 10:16) The power of God was with him. He was taken by the Spirit and conveyed away from out of the midst of them.

8. What problems arose among the people as Nephi went about teaching them? (Helaman 10:18 – see only the second half of the scripture) They began to contend one with another and slay each other with the sword. As the year passed, the contentions grew worse and there were wars throughout all the land.

As Nephi witnessed these wars, he became concerned because the people were not seeing the connection between the destruction among them and their sinful ways. He was afraid they would completely destroy themselves by the sword.

9. What did Nephi pray for on behalf of his people? (Helaman 11:4) He prayed that there might be a famine instead to help bring them to a rememberance of their God. And so it was done according to the words of Nephi.

10. What happened to the wars after the people became sore afflicted by famine? (Helaman 11:5) The work of destruction did cease by the sword because of the famine.

11. What was the cause of the food shortage? (Helaman 11:6) The earth was smitten and it was dry and did not yield any crops.

12. When the people saw they were about to perish by famine what did they remember? (Helaman 11:7) They began to remember the Lord their God; and they began to remember the words of Nephi.

13. What did the people plead with their leaders to ask Nephi to do? (Helaman 11:8) To cry unto the Lord and ask Him to turn away the famine that they might not be destroyed.

14. What did the Lord require of the people before he would end the famine? (Helaman11:10-11, 16) He required that they humble themselves, repent, get rid of the evil Gadianton robbers from among them, and be willing to do the things he asks of them.

When Nephi saw they had done all these things, he prayed that the famine would cease and that God would send rain. And the Lord did turn away his anger and did cause it to rain, and once again the crops began to grow. (Put these pictures on the easel.)

The people did esteem Nephi as a great prophet, and a man of God, having great power and authority given unto him from God.

Review Game
If time allows do the following review game with the ball of yarn:

Have the children put their chairs in two rows facing each other. Tape the end of the ball of yarn to the picture of Jesus. Draw a question from the bag and read it out loud. Toss the ball of yarn to the child who gives the correct answer. Hold onto the end of the string as you toss it. Have that child choose a question from the bag and read it. The children in the chairs on the opposite side are the ones who answer the question. The child that read the question holds on to their part of the yarn and tosses the ball of yarn to the child who answers the question. Continue in this manner, with a child reading a question, holding onto their part of the yarn and tossing it to someone on the opposite side who hasn’t had a turn answering a question.

When all the children have had a turn, and are each holding a section of the yarn, point out the line and explain that if it were an electrical power line that originated from a main power source, all outlets connected to it would receive power. (The children represent the outlets.) Explain that it can also represent a priesthood line of authority that originates from Jesus Christ. All worthy priesthood holders connected with the line would have the authority to exercise the power of the priesthood. (If possible, show an example priesthood line of authority.) (If there are more questions in the bag, cut off the piece of yarn and start the game again.)

Bear testimony that through the power and authority of the priesthood, Jesus Christ guides, governs, and blesses his followers and his church.

Weekly Reading Assignment

Remind the children to do their scripture reading assignment for this week – Helaman 10:1-19 & Helaman 11:1-21

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Lesson 29: Nephi Prophesies

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Lesson 29: Nephi Prophesies

Preparation
• Items needed: one clear glass full of water and two empty clear glasses, a piece of saran wrap, a clear glass pie pan, a scoop of dirt, a pen or pencil, a water filter (or a picture of a water filter), a picture of Jesus, a half of a paper towel, a rubber band, a brad, tape or magnets, the Book of Mormon Stories DVD, a TV, and a DVD player.
• Cover the glass of water with the piece of saran wrap. Press the sides tightly around the glass. Double the paper towel and put it on top of one of the empty glasses. Push down on the middle so it is concave. Stretch a rubber band around the glass to hold the paper towel in place.
• Print the scripture story visual aids. Cut each page in half so one picture or sign is on each half. Number the back of the scripture story pictures in the order they were printed. (Note: The scripture story visual aids are from chapter 38 of Book of Mormon Stories.)
• Print the watchman on the tower activity onto white cardstock. Cut out the wheel. Using an exacto knife, cut the dotted openings on the tower picture leaving one side on each opening uncut in order to open and close the flaps. Poke a hole in the middle dot on the tower and wheel picture using a large needle. Put the tower picture on top of the prophet wheel. Put the brad through the middle dot on each page, and open up the arms of the brad on the back of the wheel. Cut out the nine cards of prophet’s quotes.

Attention Activity

Show the children the glass of water. Point out how clean the water is and remind them how healthy and good it is for the body.

Explain that the Nephites had been blessed with many good things for the body and spirit, but because of the ease of the way, they forgot that it was because of God they were so blessed. They didn’t keep their hearts focused on God and his commandments, and they began allowing contaminants into their lives that were harmful. (Put the glass of water in the glass pie pan. Pour a pile of dirt onto the saran wrap. )

Scripture Story
Tell the following story as you show the matching scripture story visual aids to the children. (Some visual aids can be used more than once in the story.)

When Nephi returned to his home in Zarahemla from preaching to a people in the north, he saw that the people had allowed wickedness to enter their lives. It filled him with great sorrow. Nephi knelt in prayer on his garden tower and poured out his sorrow to the Lord. Nephi’s garden tower was next to a highway which led to the chief market in Zarahemla. Certain men were passing by and saw Nephi as he was pouring out his soul unto God. They ran and told the people what they had seen, and the people came together in multitudes that they might know the cause of such great mourning. When Nephi arose he saw the multitudes who had gathered together, and he asked if they had gathered to have him tell them of their iniquities

Have the children look up Helaman 7:20 – 21 & 26 to discover what sins the Nephite’s were committing. Have the children poke holes in the saran wrap with the tip of a pen or pencil for each sin they find. (Pride, vanity, set heart on riches and praises of men, murder, stealing and lying in order to get gain, forgetting God) Ask the children if they have seen any of these kinds of sins in the world today.

• Shake the water slightly so it clouds up. Point out the dirt in the water and ask, “Is the water still healthy and desirable?” What would happen if someone drank the water? It could make them sick.

The evil the Nephites had let into their lives was making them spiritually sick. The more they partook of sin the sicker it made their spirits. Nephi knew the results of letting wickedness into their lives and he warned them of the consequences. (Put up sign # 1 on the board: Prophets warn about the dangers of sin.)

Have the children look up the following scriptures to find the warned consequences Nephi prophesied would happen if they did not clean up their lives and repent. (Helaman 7:16, 22, 28) (No strength from God to withstand their enemies, city and lands taken away, destroyed from the face of the earth, everlasting misery and endless woe.)

After Nephi had warned the multitude concerning their sins, some men among them who belonged to a secret band called the Gadianton robbers were angry and cried out against Nephi.

• Who were the Gadianton robbers? They were a Satan inspired secret band whose two objectives were to get gain and power, and they used any illicit and unlawful means possible to obtain their objective including murder, threats, bribery, blackmail, theft, lying, etc.

The Lamanites, who had become more righteous than the Nephites, did not tolerate the Gadianton robbers and destroyed those who were among them. But Satan had a hold on the Nephites, and many of them had united with the Gadiantons, building them up and supporting them until they had spread over all the land and had seduced even the righteous to believe in their works. (Helaman 6:20-21 & 38)

Many members of the secret band of Gadianton robbers had infiltrated the Nephite’s system of government and had become judges, but they did not administer justice. They condemned the righteous, and they let the guilty and the wicked go unpunished for money.

Some of these Gadianton judges were among the multitude at Nephi’s home. They tried to stir up the people against Nephi.

• Why would the Gadianton robbers wish to stir up the people against Nephi? (See Helaman 8:4) Nephi had spoken plainly against them concerning their secret works of darkness. They endeavored to destroy anyone who would expose, threaten, or interfere with their evil objectives.

But there were some in the crowd who said, “Let this man alone, for he is a good man, and those things which he saith will surely come to pass except we repent.”

When Nephi saw that he had gained favor in the eyes of some, he continued to speak to them. He reminded them that all the prophets have testified of a way to make their lives clean again, and that was through the atonement of Jesus Christ. (Put sign #2 on the board: Prophets testify of Jesus Christ and teach repentance.)

• What did the people of Nephi need to do in order to apply the atonement and clean up their lives? First they needed to realize they had done wrong. Then they needed to repent and stop the flow of unclean things into their lives. (Take the dirt off the cup.) How can people in today’s world stop the flow of unclean things into their lives? By removing the things from their lives that influence and encourage them to commit sin.

• What did the Nephites need to do after they had stopped the flow of unclean things into their lives? They needed to do everything  they could to make things right again and fix the damage that had been done. (Put the paper towel covered glass in the pie pan. Pour the dirty water into the paper towel covered glass. This should filter out the larger pieces of dirt.)

• After the flow of dirt has been stopped, and as much as possible has been done to clean up their lives, would the Nephites then be clean and pure again? Point out the dirt that is still in the water. Explain that it is impossible to fix or remove all the damage we have done to ourselves and others. We need help. Show the children the water filter (or a picture of a water filter). Explain (or show) that if we were to pour the water into the filter it would take out all the impurities.

Just as we would need a water filter in order to make dirty water clean again, so do we need the Savior in order to make our lives clean of sin. (Put the picture of the Savior on the board.) We can’t do it ourselves.

The Gadianton judges did not want to change their lives. They wanted to continue to seek for riches and power, so they did not want to listen to Nephi, and they did not want the crowd to listen to him either. They tried to make the people doubt Nephi’s ability to prophesy of the judgments that would come upon them. They said they were a powerful people and there was no way their enemies could take away their cities and land.

Nephi reminded the people of the power given to prophets of old such as Moses. He told them that if God gave such power to those prophets, couldn’t He give power to Nephi to know the judgments that would come upon the Nephites.

Nephi demonstrated his prophetic power given to him by God by telling the crowd of an event that was occurring in the city that no one else was aware of. He said the chief judge had been killed by his brother because the brother desired to sit on the judgment seat, and both men belonged to the secret Gadianton band. Nephi explained that this act demonstrated the evil that was among them, and that the Nephites were at the doors of destruction.

Video Presentation
Play chapter thirty-eight of the Book of Mormon Stories DVD, starting at the point Nephi tells the crowd about the murder of the chief judge. Afterwards ask the following discussion questions:

Discussion
• The Gadianton judges accused Nephi of committing the murder to raise himself up to be a prophet. Why might the wicked judges desire to make Nephi appear to be a false prophet?

• What was Nephi’s response to their accusations? (Helaman 9:25–35.) He told them to repent or be destroyed, and then Nephi once again demonstrated his God-given prophetic ability by telling the people of an upcoming chain of events that would occur.

Why did Nephi demonstrate his prophetic ability to the Nephites? So they would know he had power from God to know of things that would happen in the future if they did not repent.

Latter-day prophets have also been given power, knowledge, and wisdom from God. They teach us what has been revealed to them. (Put sign #3 on the board: Prophets teach the revealed word of God.)

• How can we strengthen our testimony of the living prophet? By doing what he says. Remind the children of the five men who went to the city to see about the chief judge. They did not believe Nephi was a prophet, but when they got there and saw that his words were true, they did believe and they fell down in fear of the judgments Nephi had prophesied. Explain that when we do what the prophet says, we will see the truth of his words, and we will see there is safety in following his words.

Activity

Show the picture of the watchman on the tower. Explain that during the Savior’s time, robbers would sometimes come into vineyards to steal or destroy crops. Wise farmers would build tall towers in their vineyards and hire a trusted watchman to stand on the tower and watch for danger. From where he stood, the watchman on the tower could see things the others could not see.

Through the ages, Heavenly Father has given his children “watchmen.” These trusted watchmen the Lord gives us are called prophets. Nephi was one of these watchmen. These watchmen help keep us safe from the destructive attacks of Satan by warning us of danger.

• What would happen if we did not heed the warnings of our watchmen the prophets? Satan’s destructive attacks and influence could cause the loss of earthly blessings and the loss of the blessings of eternal life.

Show the children the flaps that open on the picture of the watchman on the tower. Explain that behind the top flap is a picture of a latter-day prophet and behind the bottom flap is something that prophet taught. Give each child, or set of two children, the list of some of the things these latter-day prophets taught. Spin the wheel and then have a volunteer open the top flap on the tower picture and show it to the class. Then have the child face the picture toward themselves to see what the bottom box says. Have the child pantomime what the bottom box says and see if the other children can guess which item on the list it is. Have the child who guesses correctly explain how we are blessed and kept safe when we follow that teaching. Continue with this activity until every child has had a turn acting out one of the items, or until time is up. You may wish to mention something the living prophet has emphasized in his teachings at the end of the activity. (For example: President Monson emphasizes service.)

Conclusion

Point to the signs on the board and remind the children that Heavenly Father sends prophets to warn us of the dangers of sin, to teach us about the Savior and repentance, and to lead and guide us on the earth with God’s revealed word. We are blessed when we listen to and follow the prophet.

Weekly Reading Assignment

Remind the children to do their scripture reading assignment for this week: Helaman 7:1-22, Helaman 8:1-10 & 26–28, Helaman 9:1-41

 

 

 

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Lesson 28 – Nephi and Lehi in Prison

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Lesson 28

 Nephi and Lehi in Prison

Preparation
• Items needed: a lamp or battery powered lantern, a clear page protector, a half sheet of poster board, double-sided removable tape, a picture of Jesus , scriptures for each child, a table easel, chalk and eraser, a small piece of thick dark paper, a piece of cooking wax paper, and a Pringles potato chip canister with plastic lid (or some other type of container that won’t let light in but is thin enough to cut holes in such as a shoe box.)
• Print the signs. Cut out the sign that says “I am the light of the world” and tape it to the top of the picture of Jesus. Also cut out the direction card that says “Look behind the picture of Jesus.” Tape the direction card to the inside bottom of the canister. Cut out a circle of wax paper and a circle of dark paper using the plastic lid as a guide. Put a hole in the middle of each paper about the size of a pea. Tape the wax paper inside the clear plastic lid. Tape the dark paper under the wax paper. Put the lid on the canister. Optional: glue decorative paper onto the outside of the canister. (If using a shoe box for this activity, poke an eye hole in the tall end of the box about the size of a pea and put the direction card on the opposite end. Cut a golf ball sized hole in the side of the box and tape a piece of thick dark paper over the hole.)
• Print the activity visual aids. Cover the back of the cloud page with glue (Scotch permanent glue stick works well), and adhere it to the front of the picture of Jesus. Cut the combined page into 12 puzzle pieces using the puzzle outline as a guide. Tape a page protector to the middle of the half sheet of poster board. Attach the puzzle pieces around it with double-sided removable tape (see above picture). Press the pieces on lightly so the tape will remain on the puzzle pieces when moving them to the page protector. Have extra tape available in class just in case.
• Print the handouts; one cloud handout will be needed per child. Glue the cloud page on top of the pictures of Jesus (just like the activity page). Cut the page into four sections so one cloud is on each cut section. Put the handouts in a Ziploc baggie. Place the Ziploc baggie on the easel and then put the picture of Jesus in front of it. Display the picture of Jesus on a table in class.
• Print the scripture story visual aids. Cut each page in half so one picture is on each half. Number the back of each picture in the order printed.

 

Attention Activity
Show the children the canister and explain that there are directions inside the canister that will lead them to a special handout. Have them take turns looking through the eye hole to try and read the directions. Ask the children if any of them can see the directions. Take the dark cover off the lid and ask them to try again. (Tell the children to wait to follow the directions. Explain that they will retrieve the items towards the end of the lesson.)

• Why were the directions visible the second time? Because light was let into the canister.

Ask a child to read the caption on the picture of Jesus. Explain that the full scripture is found in John 8:12 and it says: “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”

• What does the “light of life” mean? (The guiding light that leads to eternal life.) How is Jesus the guiding light of the world? Jesus lights the way to eternal life through His example and teachings.

• What might happen if a person didn’t have a light when walking in a dark area such as in a forest on a dark, cloudy night? (They might trip and fall over obstacles and get hurt.) Could the person find their desired destination? It would be difficult.

Just as we would need a light to help us find our way in the dark, we also need a light to help us find our way through the dark clouds of Satan’s lies and temptations on earth and see the way to eternal life.

Scripture Account
Remind the children of last week’s lesson concerning Helaman and the stripling warriors. Explain that after the war with the Lamanites, Helaman once again began to preach the gospel and build up the church. After Helaman died, the records he had kept were eventually given to his son who was also named Helaman. His son Helaman became a chief judge and served righteously. He had two sons by the names of Nephi and Lehi. He taught them many things

• Why do you think Helaman named his sons after Nephi and Lehi? (See Helaman 5:6.) He named them after righteous men hoping his sons would be reminded of their deeds and try to be like them.

• Ask the children if any of them are named after a person with praiseworthy characteristics.  Ask them how they feel when they hear about the characteristics of the person they are named after. Does it inspire them? Do they want to strive to be like that person?

• Remind the children that they took on a special name at baptism. What name is that? (See 2 Nephi 31:13 & Mosiah 6:1-2) The name of Jesus Christ. Explain that in today’s lesson they are going to discuss ways they can become more like Jesus Christ.

Scripture Story Continued
After Helaman died, his son Nephi served as chief judge for a time, but when the people began to become wicked and prideful he gave up the judgment seat to go and preach among them with his brother Lehi.

• The judgment seat was the top political office among the Nephites. It was influential like being a president or a prime minister. Why would Nephi give up a position where he could influence many people for good? The laws of the land were established by the voice of the people, and because of the wickedness of the people the laws had become corrupted and had little influence for good. Nephi felt he would have more influence and do more good by preaching the word of God.

Nephi and Lehi went from city to city preaching the word of God with great power, convincing many to repent. After they had gone among all the people of Nehi in the land southward, they went among the Lamanites and preached to them. Many of the Lamanites and the Nephite dissenters who lived among them were baptized unto repentance.

Scripture Story Activity
Put the scripture story visuals on the right side of the board in random order using tape or magnets. Read the story below to the children in numerical order. After reading each numbered section, stop and have a child choose a visual aid that goes with that part of the story. Have them turn over the card to see if it is right. The number on the back should match the number on the paragraph you read. If it is correct have the child move it to the left side of the board. The pictures on the left should be kept in the correct order.

1. Nephi and Lehi then went to the Land of Nephi to preach to the Lamanites and Nephite dissenters who resided there. In the Land of Nephi the Lamanites cast Nephi and Lehi into prison. They were given no food.

2. After several days the Lamanites came to the prison to slay them. When the Lamanites entered the prison, Nephi and Lehi were encircled about as if by fire. The Lamanites dared not lay their hands on them fearing they would be burned.

3. Nephi and Lehi were not burned by the fire. They told the Lamanites that God was demonstrating his marvelous power by protecting them with the fire.

4. Then the earth and the walls of the prison shook as if they might tumble down. The Lamanites were overshadowed by a cloud of darkness and they were afraid.

5. As they stood there in the darkness they heard a voice as if it were above the cloud of darkness saying, “Repent ye, repent ye, and seek no more to destroy my servants whom I have sent unto you to declare good tidings.” It was not a voice of thunder but a still voice of perfect mildness, and it did pierce them to their souls.

6. The walls and earth shook and the voice spoke to them two more times. The Lamanites were frozen with fear.

7. There was a Nephite among them who had once belonged to the church of God but had dissented. He saw through the cloud of darkness and saw that Nephi and Lehi’s faces were shining with light.

8. Their eyes were lifted up to heaven, and they were in the attitude of talking to some being that they beheld.

9. The Nephite man did cry unto the multitude to turn and look. The Lamanites asked the man what it all meant and who Nephi and Lehi were conversing with. The Nephite, whose name was Aminadab, said that they do converse with the angels of God. The Lamanites asked Aminadab what they could do to make the cloud of darkness disperse. Aminadab told them they must repent and pray to God until they gained faith in Christ.

10. They did as Aminadab said and the cloud of darkness dispersed.

11. When they looked about and saw the cloud of darkness had dispersed, they also saw they were encircled by a pillar of fire. It did not hurt them and they were filled with unspeakable joy. The Spirit of God did enter into their hearts. They saw and heard many marvelous things.

12. There were about three hundred souls who saw and heard these things, and they did go forth and minister to the people declaring all the things they had heard and seen.

13. The more part of the Lamanites were convinced of the truth of the matter because of the great amount of evidence. All those who were convinced did lay down their weapons of war, and they let go of their hatred and the traditions of their fathers.

The Lamanites had been living their lives in darkness by believing Satan’s lies, following the incorrect traditions of their fathers, and filling their lives with hatred for the Nephites.

• What did the Lamanites do to escape the darkness? They prayed for forgiveness and for faith in Jesus Christ. Afterwards they changed their lives and followed the teachings of Jesus.

Activity
Put the puzzle and page protector on the board and explain that the children are going to do an activity that will help show them ways they can follow Jesus and fill their lives with light. Have them work in groups of two. Explain that you want them to think of some things that Jesus taught or some examples he set (if they need help they can look in the chapter headlines of the book of Luke in the New Testament for ideas.) Ideas might include the following: ministered to the sick and afflicted, prayed, fasted, kept the Sabbath Day holy, taught the gospel, knew the scriptures, served others, was baptized, was meek and humble, loved others, forgave. (Remind the children that one way to know and remember what Jesus did and taught is to read their scriptures daily. His teachings are found in all the books of scripture.)

Have the groups take turns telling an answer. After they give an answer have them write it on the board and then put a puzzle piece on the page protector. Continue in this manner until all the puzzle pieces are in the correct order on the page protector. When all the pieces are in the correct order, tape or pin the page protector on a lamp (or lantern) and turn on the lamp. The picture of Jesus should shine through. Explain that when we learn and do the things Jesus taught, then we are filling our lives with light: the knowledge, understanding, and truths that lead to eternal life.

Have one of the children now follow the directions they read in the canister. Once the child has retrieved the items from behind the picture of Jesus, explain that the items are miniature copies of the picture on the lamp. Tell them to each take one home and pin or tape it to the outside of a lamp shade (preferably a lamp in their room, and with permission from parents). Explain that every time the lamp is turned on they will see the picture of Jesus, and it will be a reminder for them to follow Jesus because he is the light that leads to eternal life.

Weekly Reading Assignment

Remind the children to do their scripture reading assignment for this week: Helaman 5:14-52

 

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Lesson 27: Helaman and the Stripling Warriors

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Lesson 27
Helaman and the Stripling Warriors

 Preparation
• Items needed: tape, scriptures for each child, two containers, colored markers, several pieces of chalk and an eraser, scissors for each child (child scissors can usually be checked out at meetinghouse libraries).

• Print and cut out the health statements. Tape the “true” and “false” signs onto the containers, one on each.  Also print and cut out the characteristics activity items.
• Print and cut out the scripture story visual aids. (The footprints are not in the correct order. This is to allow you to use different colored paper for  each of the three groups. To help you identify the groups, there are letters next to each number on the footprints. S stands for stripling warrior, L stands for Lamanites, and N stands for Nephites. Also trace and cut out one blank footprint for each group from the color paper used.)
• Print the small footprints. One copy is needed per child, and they can be printed or copied onto different colored papers if desired.
• Print or obtain the pictures of the Two Thousand Young Warriors and The Anti-Nephi-Lehies Burying their Swords.
• Put the scripture story answer strips on the board using magnets or tape before class begins, or pre-stick them to a small portable display board using sticky tack. Post the big sign that says “Faith in God” on a wall.

Attention Activity
Put the true and false labeled containers on the table. Give each child a health statement, and have them take turns reading their statement. Tell the children to stand up if they hear a statement read that is not true. Ask the children to explain why it is not true. After a statement is read, have the child put their statement in the true or the false container.

Ask the children how they knew when something was false. (Because their mothers or someone had taught them what is correct.)

• What would happen if someone did the things that were on the false statements? (Their body could become unhealthy, sick, or injured). Does knowing the consequences of following the false health statements help you want to do what is correct? Did knowing what was right help you stand up and declare when something was false?

Tell the children that in today’s lesson they will learn about a group of young men who were taught what is right by their mothers; they were taught to have faith in God and to be obedient to God’s commandments. This knowledge helped them be valiant in doing and defending what is right.

Scripture Story
Remind the children of last week’s lesson concerning Amalickiah and his desire to rule over all the land. His wicked desires motivated him to start a war to attain his purposes. Explain that Amalickiah’s quest for power was brief because he was killed by the Nephite Teancum. But Amalickiah’s brother, Ammaron, was appointed to be king over the Lamanites in Amalickiah’s stead. Ammaron also desired power, and he continued the terrible war his brother had started.

There was much suffering and death that occurred because of the war. The Lamanites attacked and captured many Nephite cities. They accomplished this through cunning and through their numberless hosts. The cities they captured were all strongly fortified after the manner of the fortifications of Moroni; all of which afforded strongholds for the Lamanites.

Show a picture of the “Anti-Nephi-Lehies Burying Their Swords”, and ask the children if they remember who the people in the picture are and why they were burying their weapons. Remind the children that after the Anti-Nephi-Lehies (the people of Ammon) repented of their many sins, they made a covenant to never shed blood again. Because of their covenant they would not defend themselves against the Lamanites. In order to protect the people of Ammon, the Nephites gave them the land of Jershon to live in. (Put the land of Jershon picture on the top left of the board (or wall).

When the people of Ammon saw the danger, the afflictions, and the many tribulations the Nephites were enduring in the war against the Lamanites, they were moved to compassion and wished to take up arms in defense of their country. Helaman persuaded them not to break their oath because Helaman feared they would lose their souls if they broke their covenant.

The people of Ammon had many sons who had not entered into the covenant. These young sons gathered and covenanted to fight for the liberty of the people. (Put the picture of the stripling warriors at the top right of the board.) These young warriors chose a leader, and then they marched toward the southern borders in support of the people there.

Activity
Put footprint number one on the board, next to the land of Jershon, heading towards the bottom right of the board. Have a child read the question on the footprint and then find the matching answer. Have the children look up and read the scripture reference to make sure the answer is correct. If the answer is incorrect have the child exchange their answer for the correct one. Afterwards, add any additional discussion or comments that are listed under the question below. Continue in this manner with each footprint, going in numerical order.

1-S) Who did the young Ammonites choose as their leader? (Alma 53:19) The stripling warriors desired Helaman to be their leader.

• Who was Helaman? He was the oldest son of the prophet Alma the younger. He had been chosen to be the next spiritual leader of the people and the keeper of the records.

• Why would choosing and following a righteous leader make a difference in the young Ammonite’s effectiveness and safety in battle? A righteous leader would seek for, be worthy of, and follow the guidance of the Holy Ghost as he made decisions concerning their endeavors.

2-S) How many of these young Ammonite warriors were there at first? (Alma 53:22) There were two thousand of these young men called stripling warriors.

• What does “stripling” mean? The dictionary defines it as a boy in his teenage years who has not yet grown to his full size.

3-S) What did Helaman call the stripling warriors? (Alma 56:10) Sons

• Why did Helaman call the stripling warriors sons? They were young and worthy to be called sons, and Helaman loved each of these young men like a father loves his children.

4-S) What city did the sons of Helaman march to? (Alma 56:9) The city of Judea (Put the picture of the city of Judea on the board, along with footprint five leading to its entrance.)

5-S) How did the Nephites in Judea respond when they saw the stripling warriors? (Alma 56:10 & 16-17) (Joyfully)  The leader Antipus rejoiced to have reinforcements to strengthen his army. The Nephite soldiers were also joyful. They had lost many men and had suffered much in defense of their cities, and it gave them hope and joy to see the stripling warriors.

Now that the Nephites had reinforcements they wished to try and draw out the Lamanites from the Nephite cities they had taken. They did not desire to attack the Lamanites in their strongholds.

6-S) Who did Antipus send out of the city of Judea as bait to pretend to take provisions to a neighboring city? (Alma 56:30) Helaman and the stripling warriors

7-S) Which Lamanite conquered city did Helaman and his two thousand stripling warriors march past in order to try and draw the Lamanites out? (Alma 56:31) Antiparah (Put the city of Antiparah just below footprint number six.)

(Put the next footprint (8-L) coming out of the city of Antiparah.)

8-L) What did the Lamanites in Antiparah do when they saw Helaman and his young warriors? (Alma 56:35-36) The Lamanites came forth from Antiparah with their army and pursued after them. Helaman and his stripling warriors did flee before the Lamanites, and thus they did accomplish their goal of leading away a large Lamanite army from their stronghold.

(Put the next footprint coming out of the city of Judea. The footprints after that will be added to the end of the footprints of each group according to their label of L for Lamanites, N for Nephites, and S for the stripling warriors.)

9-N) What were Antipus and part of his army doing when the stripling warriors were marching past Antiparah? (Alma 56:33) They were marching forth from Judea to go attack the Lamanites that came out of Antiparah.

10-L) What did the Lamanites desire to do before the Nephite army overtook them? (Alma 56:37) Slay Helaman and his stripling warriors so they would not be surrounded when the Nephite army overtook them.

11-N) What did Antipus do when he saw the danger to the young stripling warriors? (Alma 56:38) Increased the speed of his army

12 -S) How many days did the Lamanites pursue Helaman and the stripling warriors? (Alma 56:42) Two days and two nights, and into the morning of the third day. (Put one blank footprint on each group to represent the pursuit, and then explain that on the morning of the third day the Lamanites halted their pursuit.

13-S) What did the stripling warriors want to do when they saw they were no longer being pursued? (Alma 56:43-46) They wanted to turn back, even though the situation could be a trap. They wanted to make sure Antipus and his army had not been overcome by the Lamanites.

(Put the next footprints turning back to head towards the Lamanite footprints).

14-S) Why were the stripling warriors not afraid to fight in the battle against the Lamanites? (Alma 56:47) (Love for family & faith in God) They had been taught by their mothers that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them.

15-S) What did the stripling warriors discover when they turned back? (Alma 56:49) They discovered a terrible battle had commenced between the Lamanites and the army of Antipus. (Put the visual aid that is labeled battle area between the end of the Lamanite and Nephite footprints.)

(Put the next footprint on top of the battle area.)

16-N) What would have happened to the army of Antipus if the stripling warriors had not turned back? (Alma 56:50) The army of Antipus was weary from their long, fast march and they were about to fall into the hands of the Lamanites. If Helaman and his stripling warriors had not returned, the army would have fallen.

(Put footprint sixteen on top of footprint fifteen.)

17-L) The Lamanites surrendered to the Nephites. What factors compelled them to surrender? (Alma 56:54 & 56) With the arrival of the two thousand stripling warriors into the battle, the Lamanites were surrounded, but the most compelling reason for their surrender was that they became afraid when they saw the mighty power and strength the two thousand warriors fought with.

(Put footprint eighteen on top of footprint seventeen, and tell the children that after the Lamanites surrendered, Helaman numbered his young men fearing that many had been slain.)

18-S) How many stripling warriors died in battle? (Alma 55-56) To his great joy he discovered that not one of them had been slain by the sword

After returning to the city of Judea and receiving reinforcements, the Nephites and stripling warriors waged other battles against the Lamanites, and they took back several cities. After one great battle, where they were outnumbered and many people were killed, Helaman was once again worried that that some of his young men might have been killed.

Activity

Have six children, in sets of two, quickly draw on the board some stick figures under the title of Nephites, Lamanites, and stripling warriors. Have a child erase some of the Nephites. Explain that a thousand Nephites were killed in the terrible battle. Have another child erase some the Lamanites. Explain that many Lamanites were also killed in the battle. (Activity Source: Teaching the Scripture Readers)

• How many of the stripling warriors were killed in the battle? Every one of the stripling warriors had several injuries, but Helaman was happy to find out that not one of them had perished. (Alma 57:25)

The stripling warrior’s preservation was astonishing to the Nephite army, and they attributed it to the stripling warrior’s great faith in the Lord that He would preserve them.

Activity
The stripling warriors gained their great faith while in their youth as they listened to and obeyed the teachings of their mothers. Heavenly Father gives us parents to love, teach, and guide us through our lives.

• What are some things that your parents or other family members (such as grandparents) have taught you that led you to gaining faith in the Lord?

Give each child a page of the small footsteps and have the children write their answers on the small footsteps. (For example: Keep the Sabbath Day holy, read the scriptures, say prayers, be honest, be forgiving, serve others, etc.) Have them roughly cut a few out and post them on the wall heading toward the sign that says “Faith in God.” Tell the children that at the end of class you want them to take their footsteps (cutting out the rest later) and put them on a wall in their room leading to their sign that says “Faith in God”. This will help remind them that following the righteous teachings of their parents and family members can lead them to gaining faith in God.

Activity & Game
As the Ammonites listened to and obeyed the righteous teachings of their mothers, not only did they gain great faith but they also developed other strong, righteous characteristics.

Divide the children into four groups and explain that each group is going to look up a scripture that tells about one of the righteous characteristics the young Ammonites developed in their youth. Give each group their characteristic card and their scripture and discussion ideas card. Tell them to read their discussion card and scripture and be prepared to tell what their characteristic is, tell about or describe their characteristic, and read the related parts of their scripture to the class. Have them tape their characteristic on the board. (Be prepared to add in any additional needed discussion to what the children present.)

After a group presents their characteristic, do the following game: Have a child stand and tell how they can demonstrate that characteristic as they go about their day to day life. For example “I can courageously stand up for the right by sticking up for a child that is being picked on.” Have the next child stand and say the same thing plus add their own. Continue doing this until all the children have had a turn. (Start with a different child each time a new characteristic is presented.)

Trustworthy and Reliable (Read the second half of Alma 53:20) The stripling warriors were “true at all times in whatsoever thing they were entrusted.” The Lord could count on them to always do the right things and firmly follow through with whatever he asked of them. The people around them could also rely on them to be dependable and trustworthy.

Courageous (Read the first half of Alma 53:20) “They were exceedingly valiant for courage.” They had great courage and did not fear death. “They did think more upon the liberty of their fathers than they did upon their lives.” (Alma 56:47) They courageously stood for what is right because of their love for their family. Our family and friends are also under attack – spiritual attack. We need to have the courage to stand up for what is right and defend truth and right to help make the world a safer and better place for them.

Hard Working (Read the first half of Alma 53:20) “They were exceedingly valiant for courage and also for strength and activity.’ Valiant for strength and activity means they worked hard to do whatever needed to be done.

Obedient – to parents, leaders, and the commandments of God. (Read the scriptures below.)
• How did the young Ammonites respond to the commands they received from their leaders and from God? (See Alma 57:21) “They did obey…. every word of command with exactness.” (Alma 58:40) “They are strict to remember the Lord their God from day to day; yea, they do observe to keep his statutes, and his judgments, and his commandments continually.”

(Read this quote after the characteristic of obedience is presented.) “The key to their success was to obey every word and command. Yes, if we are going to draw upon the powers of heaven, intention is not enough. We must obey every word of command with exactness…We must actually obey the law; intention is not enough!” Rex C. Reeve, New Era, Jul 1981

Explain to the children that they can be given the strength and power to stand up for what is right and gain characteristics of great worth like the stripling warriors if they will listen to and follow the righteous teachings and examples of their parents and leaders.

Weekly Reading Assignment

Remind the children to do their scripture reading assignment for this week: Alma 53: 10–22 & Alma 56:21-56

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Lesson 26 – Captain Moroni and the Title of Liberty

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Lesson 26
Captain Moroni and the Title of Liberty

Preparation
• Items needed: a national flag or pictures of the flag, patriotic music such as “The Star Spangled Banner” (Note: Hymn CD’s and players can be checked out at the meeting house library), a large piece of fabric that can be torn up, a pole or long stick, coloring markers, tape or sticky tack, scisssors, and a roll of wide masking tape. (Optional Items: small dowel rods to attach the children’s flags and glue or tape.)
• Each child will be making a flag from a piece of the fabric, so you need to determine how many flag pieces you need and how big you want them to be. With a pair of scissors, cut into the fabric slightly at the sections you wish to tear to make each child’s flag. Also cut or tear a large piece off of the fabric to make a prepared example of Moroni’s Title of Liberty. Write the following words on it using markers: “In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children.” Be prepared to attach the “Title of Liberty” to a pole.
• Print and cut out the scripture story visual aids. Cut each page in half so one picture is on each half. Number the back of the pictures in the order they were printed. Print and cut out the activity visual aids. Be sure to cut out each stone.

Attention Activity
Have patriotic music playing and a flag displayed (or pictures of a flag) as the children enter into the classroom. Ask the children how they felt as they heard the music and saw the flag. Ask if they felt a sense of patriotic loyalty and devotion. Ask the children how they would feel if they heard that someone wanted to take over their country, take away their freedoms, take away their right to go to church, and even possibly harm their family members in the process.

Explain that in today’s lesson they are going to learn of a people who had to face this very problem, and they will learn what a leader of these people did to protect his people. They are also going to learn how the actions of this leader demonstrated how we can protect ourselves from the attacks of a spiritual enemy who desires to destroy our freedom and lives.

Scripture Story
Tell the following story using the scripture story visual aids.

1.  Among the Nephites there was a man named Amalickiah. He desired to be king. He sought to destroy the church and destroy the foundation of liberty which God had granted them. (Alma 46:10)

• Why would Amalickiah want to destroy the church and the liberty of the people? Perhaps as a way to gain total power and influence over the people.

• In the preexistence who had a plan to destroy the freedoms and agency of the people who came to earth? (Satan) What did Satan hope to gain from implementing his plan? (Glory and power)

• What would life be like without agency? To help the children imagine what it might be like to live under Lucifer’s plan, tell them that for the next few minutes they must do exactly what you say and nothing else (make sure they know they cannot talk). Have them stand and remain standing perfectly still for a few seconds. Then tell each child where to sit. (Do not sit friends near each other.) Tell the children they must sit erect, feet flat to the floor, looking straight ahead, not moving or speaking. Have them hold the position until you tell them otherwise. After about thirty seconds, let them stand again and sit where they want. (Walk in His Ways pg 62)

Ask the children how they felt during the exercise and how they would feel if they were forced to do exactly what they were told to do, all day every day.

2. In Amalickiah’s quest for power he was able to get many people to follow him. He flattered them and told them he would make them rulers over the people if they supported him and made him their king.

3. When Moroni, the chief commander of the armies of the Nephites, heard of these dissensions he was angry with Amalickiah.

Moroni rent (tore) his coat to make a flag to rally his people to fight against these threats to their freedom. Explain that a coat back in Moroni’s day was probably a cloak. (Using the large piece of fabric, demonstrate how a cloak might have looked and how it might have been used as a coat.)

After demonstrating how it was used as a coat, dramatically take the cloth off and tear it along one of the precut slices in the fabric. Explain that fabric wasn’t easy to make or as easily available back in Moroni’s time, so tearing his coat to make a flag demonstrated the depths of Moroni’s emotion and commitment.

Show the children the piece of fabric you prepared, and explain that Moroni wrote the following words on his rent coat, “In memory of our God, our religion, and freedom, and our peace, our wives, and our children.” He then fastened it to the end of a pole, and he called it the Title of Liberty. (Attach your prepared piece of fabric to a pole.)

Explain that the word “Title” has many definitions in the dictionary. One of its meanings is, “something that justifies a claim or an established right.” So the words on the Title of Liberty might have represented their claims and rights to fight for liberty.

4.  After making the Title of Liberty, Moroni put on his armor and bowed himself to the earth. He prayed mightily unto God for the blessings of liberty to rest upon his brethren.

5. Then Moroni went among the people waving the Title of Liberty in the air that all might see the writing, and crying with a loud voice saying,  “Whosoever will maintain this title upon the land, let them come forth in the strength of the Lord, and enter into a covenant that they will maintain their rights, and their religion, that the Lord God may bless them.”

6.  When Moroni had proclaimed these words, the people came running together with their armor girded about them, rending their garments in token or as a covenant that they would not forsake the Lord their God.

• The Nephites would need to fight to defend their families and their freedoms. What direction had the Lord given to the Nephites concerning war? (Read Alma 43:47)

Explain to the children that we are also fighting a daily spiritual war against Satan. He wishes to bring us into captivity through getting us to sin. Demonstrate how Satan takes away our freedom through sin by doing the following object lesson.

Object Lesson
Ask for a volunteer. Have the volunteer put their hands together. Wrap one layer of the masking tape around their fingers and thumbs. Ask them if they can break free. Explain that when we first make a mistake or sin we are easily able to break free of its grasp and repent. But Satan knows that if he can get us to do the sin again and again, that eventually the sin will become a habit or an addiction and then we are bound in captivity to the sin. (Wrap the tape around the child’s hands several times, layering one area around the fingers and thumbs.) Ask the child to try and break free from the bindings. They shouldn’t be able to.

(Read 2 Nephi 2:27) “Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.”

Satan wants us to be miserable like he is, and he knows that sin destroys lives and keeps us from the many joys and blessings we could be enjoying. (Ask the child whose hands are bound to try and do some form of activity they normally could do if their hands were free such as tying their shoes. With their fingers bound they shouldn’t be able to do the activity. Afterwards, remove the tape and thank them for their help.)

Explain that they are going to do an activity that will help them realize and think about all the blessings they enjoy due to freedom from sin.

Activity
Tear up the rest of the fabric into pre-sized pieces and give each child one of the pieces. Ask them to draw on it pictures or write on it the blessings they enjoy due to freedom from sin.

Share an example, such as a person who is a drug addict may not be enjoying the following blessings: good health, good relationships with family and friends, spiritual blessings such as temple attendance, freedom (they may be locked up in prison for illegal drug transactions), financial security (due to wasting their money on drugs), integrity and the trust of others (due to lying and stealing to buy drugs), etc. Their addiction becomes more important than anything else and destroys their ability to hold onto and enjoy all the good and wholesome things in life.

Once the children’s flags are finished, give them the option to share what they put on their flags. Afterwards explain that they should each post their flag in their room to remind them of the many blessings they enjoy and the many reasons to fight to maintain their freedom from Satan’s traps of sin.

Scripture Story Continued
7. When Amalickiah saw that the people of Moroni were more numerous than the Amalickiahites, and he also saw that his people were doubtful concerning the justice of the cause in which they had undertaken, therefore, fearing that he should not gain the point, he took those of his people who would go with him, and he departed into the land of Nephi.

8. Moroni thought to cut off the people of Amalickiah before they joined the Lamanites because he knew that Amalickiah would stir up the Lamanites to anger against the Nephites and cause them to come to battle against the them to obtain his purposes. Moroni headed off the armies of Amalickiah, but Amalickiah escaped with a few of his men.

9. Moroni caused the Title of Liberty to be hoisted upon every tower in the land of the Nephites; and thus Moroni planted the standard of liberty among the Nephites. And there was peace in the land for four years.

10. After Amalickiah escaped Moroni and his army, he fled to the Lamanites. With much deceit, fraud, and murder he became king of the Lamanites. After becoming their king, he stirred up the Lamanites to go to war against the Nephites. He sought to rule over all the land.

11. While Amalickiah had been obtaining power by fraud and deceit, Moroni had been strengthening the Nephites against attack. He strengthened the armies and built up high banks of earth and high walls of stone around their forts, cities, and around their borders.

• Moroni had also been strengthening his people spiritually. Why was it important for the Nephites to be prepared spiritually? So they would be worthy of and in-tune to the Lord’s guidance when defending themselves against the attacks of the Lamanites. Moroni told the people to obey God’s commandments. If they would obey, God would help them to be free.” (Also see Alma 48:15–16.)

•In what other ways does obeying commandments help us be free? Obeying commandments helps protect us from Satan’s attacks (temptations) and helps keep us free of Satan’s destructive traps (sin). A loving Father in Heaven gives us commandments because he wants us to be safe and happy, just as a father or mother on earth gives their children rules such as “don’t play in the street” or “don’t touch the hot stove” because they want their children to be safe and happy.

Show the children the pictures of the signs, and ask what would happen if they didn’t obey the laws, rules, and warning signs that are around them in the world. (They could become seriously injured or even die.) Explain that just like laws, rules, and warning signs are meant for our protection, so are the commandments meant to be for our protection. We are free to choose whether or not we will obey God’s commandments, but we must also live with the consequences that follow as a result of our choices.

Scripture Story Continued
12. The Lamanites had prepared themselves for battle with armor, shields, and thick clothing. Being prepared they thought they could easily overpower the Nephites, but they were astonished and afraid when they saw the fortifications around the Nephite cities.

13. They attempted to attack and gain entrance to the cities in many different ways, but the Nephite’s defenses and preparations prevented the Lamanites from succeeding in their attempts. During these initial attempts to attack the cities, all of the Lamanite’s chief captains were slain and more than a thousand of the Lamanite’s soldiers were slain, but not one Nephite was killed.

The Lamanites fled and reported to King Amalickiah of their great losses. Amalickiah was exceedingly angry at his people because he had not gained his desire to bring the Nephites into bondage. He cursed God and Moroni.

14. The Nephites, on the other hand, did thank the Lord their God for delivering them from the Lamanites.

Activity
The Nephites built up fortifications to protect themselves from the attacks of the Lamanites. Through keeping the commandments we are also building up protective barriers and fortifying ourselves against the fiery darts of Satan’s attacks. (Ephesians 6:16)

Put the picture of the fiery darts on the board, and then put the wall outline to the left of the picture. Have the children build a barrier wall in front of the fiery darts by taking turns telling a commandment, explaining how that commandment helps protect them, writing the commandment on a stone, and then attaching it to the wall outline. Continue in this manner until the wall is built.

Remind the children that keeping the commandments helps keep us safe from Satan’s attacks and from his attempts to enslave us in sin. Express your testimony and gratitude for the commandments of God and for the freedoms and protection we enjoy through keeping the commandments.

Weekly Reading Assignment

Remind the children to do their scripture reading assignment for this week: Alma 46:4-22, Alma 48:1-17, Alma 49:1–30. Additional optional chapter: Alma 47

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