Why Share the Gospel - Scripture Story and Object Lesson
- Print pictures from Doctrine-and-Covenant-Stories. Divide each picture page by cutting on the dotted lines.
- Gather ingredients to make a chocolate cake. Also collect a mixing bowl, a spoon, and a few extra odd items such as pickles, mustard, etc.
Scripture Story – Apostasy and Restoration
(Teach the following story using the pictures from Doctrine and Covenants Stories as visual aids. Read the following corresponding text as you show the pictures to the family.)
#1) The gospel has been on the earth since the time of Adam, whenever there has been a righteous man who has authority to administer in God’s name, and a people who are willing to listen to and accept the gospel.
#2) When people reject and rebel against the commandments of God, they are in a state of apostasy (a turning away from truth). They lose the blessings of divine guidance and authority. This happened several times during the Old Testament time period. Another time period apostasy occurred was after the Savior was resurrected.
#3) After Jesus’ death and resurrection, the apostles continued to teach people about Jesus and his gospel. Many people joined the church, but soon apostasy began to creep into the church. Some of the people began to turn away from the truth and teach false ideas based on their old religious beliefs.
#4) During this time period, there was also persecution going on from outside the church. Many church members were persecuted and killed because of their beliefs. One by one the apostles were all killed by these persecutors. After the apostles died, the priesthood keys and authority were no longer on the earth. Because of the wicked state of the people, they were not restored to the earth at that time. Without prophets and apostles to lead and guide, more and more error crept into church doctrine. Knowledge and understanding about many important doctrines were lost, including the knowledge of the purpose of life.
#5) Ordinances were also changed. Baptisms began to be preformed on babies instead of waiting until a child had grown to the age of accountability. Baptisms also began to be done by sprinkling water instead of by immersion. Because of the changes to doctrine and ordinances, and the loss of priesthood keys and authority, the true church was no longer on the earth.
Show the family the chocolate cake ingredients you gathered. Tell them you don’t have the recipe, but it doesn’t matter because you think you can remember how to do it. Tell them you also want to make a few changes and add some things to the cake that you think will make it taste better. Mix ingredients in random amounts, and add a few of the extra items. Ask the family if they think your concoction will make a delicious chocolate cake? Why not? Without the right ingredients and recipe, the end result won’t be as hoped for.
Tell the family that just as the cake needed the correct ingredients, it is also necessary for a church to consist of the correct components, which includes correct doctrines and ordinances, and power and authority from God.
- How and when was the gospel of Jesus Christ restored to the earth again? In 1830, through Joseph Smith
#6) When Joseph Smith was young, he noticed how the different churches interpreted the same things in different ways. He wanted to know which of all the teachings and churches were correct.
#7) As he prayed for an answer, God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to him. The restoration process then began. Joseph Smith, who had been chosen for this responsiblity because of his faithfulness in the preexistence, helped restore the gospel of Jesus Christ to the earth once again. Because of the restoration we now have vital truths, knowledge, and the true priesthood authority that had been lost.