Sunday, October 30, 2016

Primary 4 Lesson 39: Mormon Witnesses the Destruction of the Nephites

Primary 4 Lesson 39: Mormon Witnesses the Destruction of the Nephites



CLASSROOM PREP
On the board → "How do you feel when people call you a Mormon?"

OPENING
Question on the board --> discuss, then share this quotation by President Hinckley
“While I sometimes regret that people do not call this church by its proper name, I am happy that the nickname they use is one of great honor made so by a remarkable man and a book which gives an unmatched testimony concerning the Redeemer of the world. Anyone who comes to know the man Mormon, through the reading and pondering of his words, anyone who reads this precious trove of history which was assembled and preserved in large measure by him, will come to know that Mormon...represents the greatest good—that good which is of God.”

So today we are going to read the Book of Mormon in the Book of Mormon!

SUMMARY OF MORMON 1-6 IN ORDER
Read through summary of Mormon 1-6 with Illustrated Scriptures -- print out each illustration caption on a different piece of paper and have them put it in the right order!

GO THROUGH LESSON DISCUSSION IF TIME (BELOW)

QUESTION AGAIN → after learning all that mormon went through to help the book of mormon exist, how do you feel about him? how do you feel about being called ‘mormon’

QUIZ OF SIX MORMONS (DRAW) -- Draw each Mormon and have them review what happened at that age.
    • Age 10 learned about plates
    • Age 11 traveled to land of Zarahemla.
    • Age 15 saw Jesus.
    • Age 16 led Nephite army.
    • Age 24 received plates.
      Age 74 hid plates in Hill Cumorah

MAKE PLATES AND WRITE
Bring in cardboard squares, foil, Q-tips with cotton tips taken off. They cover a square with foil and scribe their testimony on it, or their gratitude for the Book of Mormon.

I’M A MORMON VIDEOS/SNACKS
Watch "I'm a Mormon" videos with snacks


Lesson discussion...
How and why was Mormon chosen to keep the records? (Mormon 1:2–4.) How do you think you would feel if you were given the same responsibilities that Mormon was given so early in your life? How could you prepare yourself for such a sacred responsibility? Summarize Mormon 1:6–12 by explaining that while Mormon was in his youth, he witnessed a number of battles between the Nephites and the Lamanites. He also witnessed the spread of wickedness among all the people in the land. What spiritual blessings did the Nephites give up because of their wickedness? (Mormon 1:13–14.) Why is it important to live so we can have the Holy Ghost with us? Explain that because the Nephites became so wicked, they lost precious gifts from the Lord. Divide the class in half. Assign one half to read Mormon 1:13–14, 18 silently, looking for gifts that the Lord began to take away from the Nephites. Assign the other half to read Mormon 1:14, 16–17, 19, looking for reasons why the Lord took these gifts away from the Nephites. Point out that the Nephites’ rebellion was extreme. However, this principle applies to us individually when we disobey God’s commandments. Which of the gifts listed in Mormon 1:13–14, 18 would be most difficult for you to lose? Invite a student to read Mormon 1:15 aloud. Ask the class to follow along, looking for what Mormon was experiencing while many of the Nephites were losing the gifts of God and the influence of the Holy Ghost. Why do you think Mormon was able to have spiritual experiences even though he was in the midst of great wickedness? Why was Mormon not allowed to teach the gospel to the Nephites? (Mormon 1:16–17.) In what ways is it hard to live in a wicked world? What caused the Nephites to begin to repent? (Mormon 2:10–11) Why did Mormon’s happiness over the repentance of the people soon turn to sorrow? (Mormon 2:12–15.) How can we sincerely repent? During the wars, what did Mormon do with the large plates of Nephi? (Mormon 2:16–18.) Help the children understand that the Book of Mormon is named after Mormon because he was the prophet who abridged or summarized the large plates of Nephi. This abridgment made by Mormon; the things added by his son, Moroni; and the small plates of Nephi are the gold plates Joseph Smith got from Moroni at the Hill Cumorah. Why weren’t the Nephites as successful in battle as they could have been? (Mormon 2:26–27.) What can we do to have the “strength of the Lord” in our lives? What happened when Mormon taught the Nephites about repentance? (Mormon 3:2–3.) Why do many people not listen to Heavenly Father and his prophets? How can you recognize the Lord’s influence in your life? (see Mormon 3:3) What did Mormon finally do because of the people’s wickedness? (Mormon 3:11.) What did he do to show how much he cared about them? (Mormon 3:12.) Why should we pray for people who are not keeping Heavenly Father’s commandments? What were some of the hardships the people suffered, because of their wickedness, in fulfillment of these prophesies? (Mormon 2:8, 20; 4:11, 21; 5:16, 18; 6:7–9.) If you saw these hardships happening to your friends and neighbors, what would you want to do for them? What can we do to help others learn to keep Heavenly Father’s commandments? Draw attention to Mormon’s statement in Mormon 5:11 that if his people had repented, they would have been “clasped in the arms of Jesus.” What do you think it means to be “clasped in the arms of Jesus”? (You may want to point out that the word clasped means to be held tightly or securely or to be embraced.) What does this phrase teach us about the result of our own repentance? What do you think it means to be “in the hands of God”? (Mormon 5:23). What can you do to qualify to enjoy more benefits from being in God’s hands. How many people were killed in these wars? (Mormon 6:10–15) How did Mormon feel about the destruction of his people? (Mormon 6:16–22.)

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Primary 4 Lesson 38: Peace Among the Nephites

LESSON 38 PEACE AMONG THE NEPHITES

CLASSROOM PREP
Write on board → Love of god in your hearts = no contention (4 Nephi 1:15)

OPENING:
Use water from water bottle
Draw heart at bottom --> empty heart
Color it in - full of love of god in your hearts
Draw empty hearts directly above the full heart --> sharing the gospel
Dip bottom in water and watch the love spread

WORDSTRIPS IN A BAG TO DISCUSS PRIDE (BELOW)

MEMORIZE 4 NEPHI 1:15

QUESTION:
How would your life be different if you lived in a society similar to the one described in the first half of 4 Nephi? How can you help create this same kind of harmony and peace in your family and home?
LESSON
3 Nephi 28:1-16
V1 - he’s about to leave
V2 - we want to return to thee
V3 - you’re blessed to desire that
V7 - three nephites who are so righteous they shall never die and continue to minister
WE ARE BLESSED FOR OUR RIGHTEOUS DESIRES
V12-13 jesus leaves
V 24 mormon is writing this

4th Nephi
V1 After Jesus departed from the Nephites, the disciples continued to teach the people, and within a few years all the people in the land were converted to the Lord. The people listened to the disciple’s teachings.  They repented and were baptized, and they received the Holy Ghost.
V2 no contentions or disputations!
What do contention and disputation mean? (4 Nephi 1:2. Quarreling or arguing.)
How have you and your family been blessed when you have had no contention?
How can you be a peacemaker and help your family avoid contention?
V3 What would be good about living this way? What would be hard?
V5 miracles
V7 prosperous
V10 strong, fast, fair, delightsome
V11 marriage, blessed
V12 what does it mean to be physically healthy? How did the people remain spiritually healthy? (kept commandments, fasted, prayed, attended church)
The people were blessed in all their doings because of their righteousness. They prospered and built cities. They were strong and multiplied. The people lived in peace for many years. After nearly 200 years, two generations had passed on, and the people had multiplied and had spread out over all the land.

V15 what does it mean to have the love of god in your hearts? How can this be shared with others?
V16 do you think the people having love of god in their hearts prevented those bad things?
V22 200 years had passed away

V23-24 what changed?
V25 what wasn’t common anymore?
V26-29 new churches persecuting the true church, denying the gospel
GLASS OF WATER
  • put one drop of blue food coloring into the water
  • watch it spread throughout the glass and observe how quickly one little drop spreads
  • explain that if people allow themselves to be exposed to a little sin, it can quickly grow and spread if left unchecked. We need to be careful about what we allow into our thoughts and lives.
So what happened?
The people had become very rich because of their prosperity in Christ, and they began allowing pride to take a hold in their lives
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said this about pride: “At its core, pride is a sin of comparison, for though it usually begins with ‘Look how wonderful I am and what great things I have done,’ it always seems to end with ‘Therefore, I am better than you.’
The people began to focus on themselves instead of helping others.
Have the children read 4 Nephi 1:26-27 & 29 to find the ways pride and sin began to spread.
→ list below
→ put a drop in the glass for each item mentioned below
  • They once again began to be divided into social classes.
  • They built many different churches to themselves (not to God). The churches were built up to help people get gain. They denied the true church of Christ.
  • These churches professed to know Christ but denied most parts of his gospel. (These people were no longer nourishing their spirits with the teachings of Christ and they were becoming spiritually weaker and weaker.)
  • The churches became open to all manner of wickedness. They allowed the wicked to participate in sacred ordinances.
  • One of the churches denied Christ and persecuted the members of the true church of Christ because of the members’ humility and belief in Christ. They despised them because of the many miracles which were wrought among them.
As the people let wickedness into their lives, it spread.
What color is the water now?
Instead of nourishing their spirits, they filled their lives with thoughts only about themselves and how rich they were, denying God, and their choices became increasingly worse
They were filling their lives with darkness.
Have the children observe the color of the water, and explain that instead of nourishing their spirits, they filled their lives with worthless, self-indulgent thoughts, and their choice became increasingly wicked. They were filling their lives with darkness. The choices they made resulted in misery and unhappiness for many people.

Remember those three disciples that Jesus gave power to stay on earth until his Second Coming?
How did the people treat them?
V 30-34 this is all about pride / cast into prison / fiery furnaces / wild beasts → saved each time

Each year they got more and more wicked.
PRIDE CYCLE ON THE BOARD

The people had been given the wonderful blessing of the gospel.
Show the Skittles → gospel blessings
Put two in - they will disappear
The Nephites’ faith and blessings dwindled and wasted away as the people became more wicked.

Over time, the Lamanites and Nephites were both equally bad.
We need to remember our blessings if we want to live a happy and peaceful life
We must strive to follow the Savior and his teachings.
The gospel of Jesus Christ teaches us how to make good choices that lead to happiness.
CUT THESE UP AND PUT IN A BAG FOR THEM TO PULL OUT AND DISCUSS
President Benson taught us that we can overcome pride in our lives and be humble, meek, and submissive by—
  • Loving Heavenly Father and putting him first in our lives.
  • Not worrying about what others think of us but only what Heavenly Father thinks of us.
  • Not gossiping or criticizing.
  • Not envying or living beyond our means.
  • Not arguing or fighting in our families.
  • Helping others feel good about themselves.
  • Accepting counsel from our leaders.
  • Forgiving those who have offended us.
  • Being unselfish.
  • Serving others.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Primary 4 Lesson 37 Jesus Christ Teaches the Nephites to Pray

LESSON 37 JESUS CHRIST TEACHES THE NEPHITES TO PRAY





  1. OPENING ACTIVITY (BELOW)
Pretzel story
hand out pretzels in bags or cups

  1. PINEGAR STORY READING (BELOW)
President Spencer W. Kimball taught this concept when he said: “God does notice us, and he watches over us. But it is usually through another person that he meets our needs. Therefore, it is vital that we serve each other.”
→ what are your thoughts

→ go through questions

  1. ALPHABET
Alphabet gratitude printout (alphabet with lines next to each letter) with a pen
Write 1-2 things you're grateful for that starts with each letter

5. SCRIPTURE REFERENCES (BELOW)

6. MEMORIZE Alma 13:28 (part of): “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and call on his holy name, and watch and pray continually, that ye may not be tempted above that which ye can bear, and thus be led by the Holy Spirit.”
Elder Rex D Pinegar, October 1991 Conference
One morning several years ago I was driving with my family [on a vacation]. Our four young daughters were excited as we approached the turnoff to [a] famous park. The laughter and happy chatter stopped suddenly, however, as our rented station wagon sputtered and chugged to an unexpected stop on the exit ramp. Many cars sped by us in the rush-hour traffic as I tried to get the car running again. Finally, realizing there was nothing more we could do, we got out of the stalled car and huddled together off the road for a word of prayer.
“As we looked up from our prayer, we saw a smiling, handsome man and his son maneuver their … car through the lanes of traffic and pull off the road beside us. For the remainder of the morning and into the afternoon these men cared for our needs in many kind and helpful ways. They took us and our belongings to the park. They helped me locate a tow truck for the stranded car; they drove me to the rental agency to get a replacement vehicle. … They bought refreshments for my family and waited with them until I returned several hours later.
“We felt that these men were truly an answer to our prayer, and we told them so as we said good-bye and tried to thank them. The father responded. ‘Every morning I tell the good Lord that if there is anyone in need of help today, please guide me to them’”
PRETZELS Though the exact origins of the pretzel remain mysterious, legend has it that the story began around A.D. 610, when Italian monks presented their young students with treats of baked dough twisted in the shape of crossed arms. At the time, crossing one’s arms was the traditional posture for prayer. As the custom spread through medieval Europe, the pretzel’s three holes came to represent the Holy Trinity—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—and the twisty baked good became associated with good luck, long life and prosperity.
Lent is a period of fasting, self-denial and prayer, in imitation of our Lord's fasting, forty days and forty nights, and in preparation for the feast of Easter. It comprises forty days, not including Sundays, from Ash Wednesday to the end of Holy Saturday.
The pretzel has a deep spiritual meaning for Lent. In the old Roman Empire, the faithful kept a very strict fast all through Lent: no milk, no butter, no cheese, no eggs, no cream and no meat. They made small breads of water, flour and salt, to remind themselves that Lent was a time of prayer. They shaped these breads in the form of crossed arms for in those days they crossed their arms over the breast while praying. Some say they were originally called “bracellae,” the Latin term for “little arms,” from which Germans later derived the word “bretzel.”
According to others, the earliest pretzels were dubbed “pretiolas,” meaning “little rewards,” and handed out by the monks when their young pupils recited their prayers correctly.
LESSON
Why does Jesus want us to pray always? (3 Nephi 18:15, 18.)

To whom do we pray? In whose name do we pray? (3 Nephi 18:19; 3 Nephi 19:6–8.)
As we pray in faith for what is best for us, what promise do we have? (3 Nephi 18:20.) Help the children understand that Heavenly Father always knows what is best for us. Sometimes this is different from what we want.

Why is family prayer important? (3 Nephi 18:21.) How can you help your family have regular family prayer?

What did Jesus Christ say we should do for those who are not members of the Church? (3 Nephi 18:22–23.)

What does it mean to “hold up your light that it may shine unto the world”? (3 Nephi 18:24.) How can we help others understand the importance of prayer?

As the disciples prayed, what did they desire the most? (3 Nephi 19:9.) How was this gift given to them? (3 Nephi 19:13–14.)

What did Jesus say when he prayed to Heavenly Father? (3 Nephi 19:20, 28.) Why do you think expressing thanks is such an important part of our prayers? What are some things you are thankful for?
How can we pray unceasingly? (3 Nephi 20:1.) Why should we always have a prayer in our hearts? (3 Nephi 18:15, 18.) How can prayer help us avoid temptation?
SCRIPTURE REFERENCES Write the following scripture references on pieces of paper
Give them to the children either individually or in small groups.

Have the children read the scriptures, looking for the things Jesus Christ taught about the blessings that come to us through prayer.

Report what’s learned.