Preparation Material for the Home-Study Teacher
The following summary of the doctrines and principles students learned as they studied 2 Nephi 4–10 (unit 6) is not intended to be taught as part of your lesson. The lesson you teach concentrates on only a few of these doctrines and principles. Follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit as you consider the needs of your students.
Day 1 (2 Nephi 4–5)
As students studied 2 Nephi 4, they focused on the principle that God supports those who put their trust in Him (see 2 Nephi 4:12–35) and wrote in their scripture study journal about one way they would like to increase their trust in God. In 2 Nephi 5 they saw examples of the following truths: Safety comes from obeying the revelations of God (see 2 Nephi 5:1–8). As the gospel of Jesus Christ becomes our way of life, we will increase in happiness (see 2 Nephi 5:9–18, 26–27). Students examined their lives and determined something they would do to live more fully “after the manner of happiness.”
Day 2 (2 Nephi 6–8)
In this lesson students learned that the Lord is merciful to those who return to Him (see 2 Nephi 6). They pondered how the Lord has been merciful to them. They also learned that the Savior desires to redeem His covenant people and has all power to do so (see 2 Nephi 7–8).
Day 3 (2 Nephi 9)
As students began their study of 2 Nephi 9, they learned what would happen if there were no Atonement. They also studied the following truths: The Atonement of Jesus Christ delivers all mankind from the physical and spiritual death brought about by the Fall (see 2 Nephi 9:1–22). Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can overcome the consequences of our sins if we have faith in Jesus Christ, repent, are baptized, and endure to the end (see 2 Nephi 9:14–27). Students wrote a paragraph expressing their feelings about the Savior’s sacrifice for them.
Day 4 (2 Nephi 9–10)
As students studied the remainder of 2 Nephi 9 and studied 2 Nephi 10, they pondered which of their choices may be separating them from the Lord and which are helping them come closer to Him. They learned that as we choose to come to the Lord and live according to His will, we will receive the full blessings of the Atonement.
Among the many important truths the students have studied this week, emphasize the significance of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Pray for guidance regarding how you can best help them understand and rely on the Atonement. As you teach, encourage students to ponder what they need to do to receive the blessings of the Savior’s Atonement.
Note: As you prayerfully prepare your lesson, consider the needs of your students—especially the needs of those who may be struggling. As you pray for individual students and for guidance on how to best teach them the doctrines and principles found in the scriptures, the Holy Ghost will inspire you to know how to meet students’ needs.
Suggestions for Teaching
Write the information in the following chart on the board, or prepare it as a handout.
Remind students that 2 Nephi 6–9 is the first day of a sermon Jacob gave to his people. The second day of his teaching continues in 2 Nephi 10. In 2 Nephi 6, Jacob prophesied that the Jews would reject the Lord and be scattered. Have students read 2 Nephi 7:1–2, and invite them to restate what it means in their own words.
Share the following statement by President Ezra Taft Benson:
“Just as a man does not really desire food until he is hungry, so he does not desire the salvation of Christ until he knows why he needs Christ.
“No one adequately and properly knows why he needs Christ until he understands and accepts the doctrine of the Fall and its effect upon all mankind. And no other book in the world explains this vital doctrine nearly as well as the Book of Mormon” (“The Book of Mormon and the Doctrine and Covenants,” Ensign, May 1987, 85).
Have students imagine that a friend asked, “Why do we need the Savior?” Invite the class to prepare to answer this question based on what they learned in 2 Nephi 9. Have them review 2 Nephi 9:7–10, 19–22 for an answer. Ask the students to share their answers to the question.
To help students better understand how Jesus Christ can save us from the consequences of the Fall, read the analogy by President Joseph Fielding Smith in the lesson material for 2 Nephi 9:10–27, in Unit 6: Day 3, in the student manual. You might consider inviting a student to draw on the board or on a sheet of paper what President Smith described. If you choose to have a student draw on the board or a piece of paper, you may want to invite the student to also explain the drawing.
Invite students to think about their own feelings of being trapped in a deep pit and separated from God because of choices they have made. Explain that if it were not for the Atonement of Jesus Christ, there would be no opportunities for repentance, there would be no hope, and no one could escape these consequences of sin.
Have a student read 2 Nephi 9:21–23, and ask a few students to explain it in their own words. Though they may say it differently, be sure that the following truth is clear: Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can overcome the consequences of our sins.
Explain that one of the great opportunities available with meeting as a group is being able to share feelings and testimonies. Invite the students to share their feelings and testimonies about Jesus Christ and His Atonement. If they struggle to share, you could have them read what they wrote in their scripture study journals for day 3, assignment 4. You may want to add your testimony to theirs.
Have the class imagine that someone was stricken with a terrible disease. Then discuss the following questions:
Why is it important that the person understand the need to seek help?
Why is it important that the person also understand what to do to receive help?
What will result if the person understands the need for help but does not understand what to do to receive it?
Ask students if they know what they must do to receive the blessings of the Atonement. Remind them that they studied 2 Nephi 9:23, 42–52 and identified several actions and attitudes that help us come to Christ and invite the power of His atoning sacrifice into our lives. Have them review the scriptures they marked and the list they made in their scripture study journals of those things that lead us to the Savior (day 4, assignment 1). Invite students to share how one or more of these actions and attitudes have brought them closer to the Savior. Share your testimony that following the principles taught in these verses will help us receive the full blessings of the Atonement.
Read 2 Nephi 10:23–24 with students. Remind students that in day 3, assignment 6, they were invited to determine something they would do to reconcile themselves to the will of God. Encourage them to follow through with this invitation.
Ask students to share additional insights they received from the chapters they studied this week. Time permitting, conclude this week’s lesson by singing or reading together the words of the hymn “I Stand All Amazed” (Hymns, no. 193) or another hymn about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Share your testimony of the importance of coming to the Savior and the reality of the blessings of the Atonement.
Next Unit (2 Nephi 11–25)
As students study 2 Nephi 11–25 this coming week, they will recognize some of the words of Isaiah and how he saw our day and warned us based on what he saw. Some of his warnings relate to our media, our clothes, our lifestyles, and our attitudes. Encourage students to read and glean what they can from 2 Nephi 11–25, even if they do not understand every word.