Sharing Time: Watchmen on the Tower


“And the voice of warning shall be unto all people, by the mouths of my disciples, whom I have chosen” (D&C 1:4).

Watchmen on the Tower

Imagine standing on a high mountain and looking down on the valley below. The view is different from the view down below, isn’t it? From below, you see only the things near you. But when you are up high, you can see things that are far away.

During the Savior’s life on earth, farmers grew grapes in great fields called vineyards. Grapes were very valuable. Sometimes robbers came into the vineyards to steal or destroy the crops. Wise farmers built tall towers outside their vineyards. They hired trusted watchmen to stand on the towers and watch for danger. The watchmen could see far beyond the vineyards and could warn those below if danger was coming. The other workers would then have time to prepare to protect the vineyards.

Heavenly Father has given us “watchmen.” These watchmen are prophets and apostles. They have been called by Heavenly Father to watch over us. They warn us about dangers that lie ahead of us, such as temptations and evil influences. They tell us how we can defend ourselves against those dangers.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is led by a prophet who is the President of the Church. He and his two Counselors make up the First Presidency of the Church. We also have Twelve Apostles whom we sustain as prophets, seers, and revelators. They don’t stand on a tower, but they do receive inspiration from Heavenly Father to know what dangers await us. They teach us to face these dangers by keeping our covenants and the commandments. We hear their counsel during general conference. We can also read their words in the Liahona. The prophets and apostles are our watchmen on the tower today. If we heed their words, we will be safe.

Instructions

Cut page 3 out of the magazine, and glue it onto heavy paper. Cut out the wheel. On the front cover of this issue of The Friend, cut out the window with the man inside and the area below him (see illustration).

Watchtower

Attach the wheel to the back of the front cover by pushing a brass fastener through the black dots. As you turn the wheel, you will see pictures of each of the current Twelve Apostles in the top window of the tower on the front cover. Below each picture is something that Apostle has recently warned us to do to protect ourselves from the evil influences of the world.

Apostle wheel(click to view larger)

Illustrated by Brad Teare

Boyd K. Packer

Follow the promptings of the Spirit.

L. Tom Perry

Place a high priority on family home evening.

David B. Haight

Use your time wisely.

Neal A. Maxwell

Learn to serve and to forgive others.

Russell M. Nelson

Obey God’s commandments.

Dallin H. Oaks

Follow the Church leaders.

M. Russell Ballard

Be an example.

Joseph B. Wirthlin

Trust in Heavenly Father.

Richard G. Scott

Know that Jesus Christ loves you.

Robert D. Hales

Pray daily.

Jeffrey R. Holland

Keep trying.

Henry B. Eyring

Study the scriptures and the words of the living prophets.

Sharing Time Ideas

  1. 1.

    Invite a Melchizedek Priesthood bearer to portray King Benjamin. Have him tell about who King Benjamin was, when he lived, and who his people were (see Mosiah 2–5). Have him teach a few of the principles King Benjamin taught while speaking on the tower (see Mosiah 2:17; Mosiah 2:20–22; Mosiah 4:15–16). Divide into groups, and give each group a reference from King Benjamin’s talk. Have the children read the scripture and discuss what they can do to follow this teaching. Invite each group to share the things they will do to follow King Benjamin. Testify that blessings come when we do what the prophets ask us to do.

  2. 2.

    Have the children tell you some things the prophet has asked us to do. Write their responses on the board. Make several large musical notes with a hymn or song title on each note that will go along with some of the teachings likely to be mentioned. Choose one note, hum or have the pianist play the first few notes of the song, and see if the children can name the song. Discuss which teaching the song goes with, and place the note on the board by the appropriate response. Sing the song, and have the children tell how they can follow the prophet’s counsel.