Each young man will more fully recognize that faith in Jesus Christ is vital to an Aaronic Priesthood holder and that it can have significant effects in his life.
Scriptures for each young man.
A few hymnbooks.
(Optional) Obtain or prepare a tape recording of the hymn
“I Know That My Redeemer Lives” (Hymns, no. 136).
Assign a young man to relate the account of David and Goliath from 1 Samuel 17.
Suggested Lesson Development
First Principle of the Gospel: Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ
Read the following story:
Ellen awoke suddenly and sensed that something was wrong. The house was still. She listened in the silence and tried to discover what the danger could be. Within minutes, she knew what it was, and she screamed it, shattering the midnight quiet. “Smoke! Mom! Rob! Tracy! I smell smoke!” She made her way to the bedroom door and reached for the brass knob. It was hot to her touch. Thick smoke seeped under the doorsill. It curled into her nostrils and lungs, stinging, suffocating. Flames seared the other side of the closed door. She was trapped.
She groped her way to the small window on the far side of the room. Now she could hear the high-pitched shriek of fire engines in the distance. “Hurry … oh, please hurry,” she half sobbed. Fear for her own life left her for a moment as she thought of her family—Mom, little Tracy, and Rob—wonderful Rob, who had been both older brother and father to Ellen since Dad’s accident. Had they awakened in time to escape, or were they also sealed behind a wall of heat and flames?
She reached for the smooth, familiar pull of the attic window and felt the cool night air touch her face reassuringly. She could hear the frightened voices of onlookers below. Ellen leaned out the little window as far as she dared. “Help! Help me, please!”
“Look! There’s a girl up there in that high window!” a woman shouted. The screaming fire engines pulled into the drive. Ellen heard a man’s voice, “Hey you! … Up there! We’ve spread a net. You’ve got to jump into it. Jump straight down. The roof’s going to collapse any minute!” Ellen froze on the ledge. “Jump!” the man’s voice called again, urgently.
She heard a neighbor shout to the fireman, “The girl is blind! She can’t see where to jump.” Suddenly, Ellen heard Rob’s voice.
“Ellen … it’s me, Rob. I’m right below your window. Jump, Ellen. I’m here. I’ll catch you. Jump!”
Ellen took a deep breath and released her grip on the ledge. “I’m coming, Rob,” she whispered, as she leaped from the small attic window.
Chalkboard and discussion
What one word describes what this story is about? (Faith.)
Write the word Faith at the top left of the chalkboard.
As far as Ellen was concerned, what differences were there between the fireman and Rob? (She knew her brother and had faith in him.)
Have the young men repeat the fourth article of faith:
“We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith 1:4).
Next to the word Faith on the chalkboard, add the phrase in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Why is it so important to have faith in Jesus Christ? (Only through faith can we repent of our sins and become like Christ.)
Explain that all of us have sinned, but Jesus Christ suffered for our sins, that we might be made pure. Only by showing faith in Jesus Christ through obedience and repentance can we receive forgiveness for our sins and return to our Heavenly Father’s presence.
Scripture story and discussion
Have a young man tell in his own words the story of David and Goliath (see 1 Samuel 17).
Have the young men read 1 Samuel 17:26.
Why was David surprised that Goliath was challenging Israel? (Because of David’s faith that the army of Israel was the army of the living God.)
Have the young men read 1 Samuel 17:28–29.
What was David’s response when his older brother Eliab became angry with him for leaving his sheep to go fight Goliath? (“Is there not a cause?”)
Have the young men read 1 Samuel 17:36–37, 40, 46–49.
Express your feelings about David, who showed great faith in the Lord in accepting Goliath’s challenge. Although David was a young man, he met and successfully conquered Goliath.
Do we have any challenges that appear like Goliaths to us in our lives?
Remind the young men of challenges like resisting peer pressure, successfully completing difficult school subjects, reading and understanding the meaning of some of the scriptures, learning a new sport, learning a new craft or skill, completing a large book, and not taking lightly our priesthood responsibilities.
Explain that each of us will meet obstacles in our lives. If we have the same confidence and faith that David had, the results will likely be similar.
Read what President Spencer W. Kimball said regarding faith:
“You will meet Goliaths who threaten you. Whether your Goliath is a town bully or is the temptation to steal or to destroy or the temptation to rob or the desire to curse and swear; if your Goliath is the desire to wantonly destroy or the temptation to lust and to sin, or the urge to avoid activity, whatever is your Goliath, he can be slain. But remember, to be the victor, one must follow the path that David followed:
“‘David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the Lord was with him’ (1 Samuel 18:14)” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1974, p. 116; or Ensign, Nov. 1974, p. 82).
What can we do to overcome the Goliaths that we have in our lives?
Allow the young men time to discuss their ideas. Emphasize the following ideas: seeking help and support from family, friends, and Church leaders; studying the problem thoroughly and praying for a confirmation of a decision; studying the scriptures for guidance and inspiration; and praying and fasting.
Jesus Christ Blesses Those Who Have Faith in Him
Story and discussion
Explain that the following story, told by Bishop H. Burke Peterson of the Presiding Bishopric, is a true example of the power of faith in Jesus Christ:
“Some years ago I was a bishop of a ward in the United States. We had a group of young people in our ward who were fine examples of what Latter-day Saints ought to be. They got acquainted with a young teenage girl who was not a member of the Church. This teenage girl was deaf, but she had learned to read lips with her eyes, and if you stood in front of her and spoke to her, she could tell what you were saying by reading your lips. She also had an illness of her heart. She was unable to engage in any athletics with the other girls. The Mormon boys and girls were friendly to her and considerate of her and understanding. She liked the way they treated her. She liked their example. Soon she was invited to listen to the missionaries give the lessons. As they concluded the lessons, she believed what she had been taught and asked her parents if she could be baptized. They also had heard the lessons, but they didn’t accept the truth as she did. They did give their permission for her to be baptized, however.
“One Saturday afternoon we gathered at the baptismal font as this young deaf girl entered into the water. After the baptism she was to be confirmed a member of the Church. The elders asked me if I would like to stand in the circle. I did. I knew she wouldn’t be able to hear the confirmation and blessing from the elder because she couldn’t see his lips, so I listened very attentively to the blessing of the elder as he confirmed her a member of the Church. I wanted to tell her what he said after it was over.
“The blessing was given by the elder. I could hardly believe my ears when I heard what he said, for he said some things that I would not believe possible. He had full faith that the Lord would grant the blessings he had given.
“After the confirmation and blessing I invited the young lady to come into my office. She sat down in front of me as I was prepared now to tell her of the blessing that the elder had just given her. I said, ‘Nancy, I would like to tell you of the blessing that the elder gave you.’ She looked at me and said, ‘Bishop Peterson, I heard the blessing.’ From that time on Nancy Fuller could hear. She was no longer deaf. From that time on she could play volleyball and play softball and play tennis because her heart had also been healed” (in Conference Report, Korea Area Conference 1975, p. 25).
What power enabled Nancy Fuller to be healed? (The power of the priesthood along with her faith and the elder’s faith.)
How can we strengthen our faith in Jesus Christ?
List the young men’s responses on the chalkboard.
You may wish to conclude the lesson by bearing personal witness to the power that faith in Jesus Christ can have in the life of each young man. Testify that only through faith in Jesus Christ can we meet the challenges of life and return to our Heavenly Father.
Ask the young men to think about the Savior as they listen to the recording of the hymn