Lesson 83: Alma 19–20

Book of Mormon Seminary Teacher Manual, 2017


Introduction

King Lamoni experienced a change of heart, leading to the conversion of his wife and many of his people. Ammon and King Lamoni then traveled to Middoni to deliver Ammon’s imprisoned brethren. On the way, they met Lamoni’s father, king over all the land. The king was astonished by the words of Lamoni and Ammon, by Ammon’s strength, and by Ammon’s love for Lamoni. His heart was softened, and he assured them that Ammon’s brethren would be released from prison. He expressed a desire to learn about the words he had heard from his son and Ammon.

Suggestions for Teaching

Alma 19

King Lamoni and many of his people repent and are baptized

Note: Before class, invite one student to review Alma 19:18–28 and another student to review Alma 20:1–7. Ask them to be prepared to summarize the content of those verses for the class when invited to do so during the lesson.

To begin the lesson, ask students:

  • When you drop a rock into a pool of water, what happens to the water?

As students describe the effect of a rock dropped into water, draw the following diagram on the board, leaving off the words.

Ammon ripple effect
  • How can a person’s actions be like the rock that was dropped into the water? (Help students see that, like ripples that expand from the splash of a rock, other people can be influenced by our actions.)

Remind students that as they studied Alma 17–18, they learned about Ammon’s efforts to teach the gospel to the Lamanites. Write the following on the board: By sharing our testimonies and setting righteous examples, we can …

As students study Alma 19 today, invite them to look for the effect that our testimonies and examples can have on others.

Write Ammon in the first ring in the diagram.

  • Who did Ammon first teach? (Write King Lamoni on the second ring in the diagram.)

Remind students that when King Lamoni recognized his own sinfulness and his need for the Savior, he cried to the Lord for mercy and then fell to the earth.

Summarize Alma 19:1–5 by explaining that after two days and two nights, the servants, believing Lamoni was dead, were about to take his body to the sepulchre when the queen said that she wanted to talk with Ammon. She did not think that Lamoni was dead, and she wanted Ammon to go to him.

Invite a student to read Alma 19:4 aloud. Ask the class to follow along, looking for what the servants said that prompted the queen to talk with Ammon.

  • What did the servants say that prompted the queen to talk with Ammon? (After students respond, write Lamoni’s servants on the next ring in the diagram on the board.)

Ask students to read Alma 19:6 silently, looking for phrases that describe Lamoni’s experience. Call on a few students to read the phrases they have selected. Ask them why they selected those particular phrases.

On the diagram, write The queen on the next ring. Divide students into pairs. Invite students to read Alma 19:7–11 aloud with their partners, looking for how this experience influenced the queen.

  • What can we learn about the queen from these verses? (Answers may include that she loved her husband, that she trusted Ammon, and that she had great faith.)

Ask a student to read Alma 19:12–14 aloud. Invite the other students to follow along, looking for what Lamoni said when he arose the next day.

  • What had Lamoni learned during the previous three days?

  • Why do you think this knowledge brought Lamoni such joy?

  • What effect did Lamoni’s testimony have on his wife?

Invite a student to read Alma 19:15–16 aloud. Ask the class to look for what Lamoni’s servants did when they saw that Lamoni, the queen, and Ammon had fallen to the earth.

  • What did Lamoni’s servants do?

  • How was Abish different from the other servants?

Write Abish on the next ring. Invite a student to read Alma 19:17 aloud. Invite the class to look for how Abish was influenced by these events.

  • What did Abish do?

  • What did she hope would happen because of her actions?

Ask the student you invited to summarize Alma 19:18–28 to explain the events recorded in these verses. As needed, help the student include the following information: After hearing the news from Abish, the people gathered in the king’s house. When they saw Ammon, the king, the queen, and the servants unconscious, great contention arose among them. One man tried to kill Ammon but fell dead in the attempt. Some claimed that Ammon was the Great Spirit, and others said he was a monster. When Abish saw all the contention that had resulted from her bringing the people together, she was very sad.

Have students consider what they might do in Abish’s situation. Then ask a student to read Alma 19:29 aloud.

  • How did Abish’s action show the strength of her testimony?

  • How did the queen demonstrate that she had received a testimony?

Invite several students to take turns reading aloud from Alma 19:30–35. Ask the class to follow along and look for the effect the testimonies and examples of Ammon, Lamoni, and Lamoni’s servants had on others.

  • Whom did Ammon, Lamoni, and Lamoni’s servants affect through their testimonies and examples?

Write Many other Lamanites on the last ring in the diagram.

Ask students to complete the statement you wrote on the board at the beginning of class. One principle they might express is that by sharing our testimonies and setting righteous examples, we can help others turn to the Lord. Complete the statement on the board so that it conveys this principle.

  • What are some examples today of how our testimonies and examples can influence others to turn to the Lord?

  • When has someone’s example or testimony helped you turn to the Lord?

Ask students to write an answer to the following question in their class notebooks or study journals:

  • What can you do today that might influence people around you to turn to the Lord?

Explain that Alma 19:36 contains an additional truth that Mormon (who abridged this chapter) wanted us to learn. Invite a student to read Alma 19:36 aloud. Ask the class to look for the principle Mormon taught about the Lord.

  • What principle did Mormon teach about the Lord? (Invite students to consider marking the following principle in their scriptures: The Lord’s arm is extended to all people who will repent and believe on his name.)

You may want to explain that in this context the Lord’s arm being extended refers to His mercy and willingness to forgive.

  • Why is the account of Lamoni and his people a good example of this principle?

  • Why do you think this principle is important for us understand in our day?

Explain that sometimes we may incorrectly decide that someone would not be interested in the gospel because of how that person looks or what he or she has done in the past. Ask students if they have ever seen someone turn to the Lord who they had initially assumed would not. If students have had this experience, invite them to tell the class what happened. You may also want to share an experience.

Encourage students to allow their testimonies and righteous examples to influence others, like a rock makes ripples in a pond.

Alma 20

King Lamoni’s father desires to learn about the gospel and begins to experience a change of heart

Invite the student you asked to summarize Alma 20:1–7 to explain the events in those verses to the class. As needed, help the student include the following information: Lamoni wanted to take Ammon to meet his father, who was the king over all the land. The Lord revealed to Ammon that Ammon should not go because Lamoni’s father would try to kill him. The Lord also revealed that Ammon’s brother Aaron and two of their companions were in prison in the land of Middoni. Ammon wanted to free his brethren. Hearing that Ammon had learned these things by revelation, Lamoni went to help Ammon free his brethren.

Before class, copy the following chart on the board or on a handout for each student:

1. Alma 20:8–14

How did Lamoni’s father react to seeing Lamoni with Ammon?

2. Alma 20:15–16

How did Lamoni respond to his father?

3. Alma 20:17–25

When Lamoni’s father saw that Ammon could kill him, what did he offer Ammon? What did Ammon ask instead?

4. Alma 20:26–27

How did Ammon’s love for Lamoni influence Lamoni’s father? In what ways did the words of Ammon and Lamoni influence Lamoni’s father?

Assign students to work in pairs. In these partnerships, have them read the verses listed in rows 1–2 and discuss the answers to the accompanying questions. Encourage them to be prepared to share their answers with the entire class.

After students have discussed rows 1–2 in pairs, ask a few of them to report what they have learned. Then ask:

  • What principle can we learn from these verses about standing up for what we know is right? (Students may share several answers, but help them identify the following principle: We can stand up for what we know is right, even when others try to persuade us to do what is wrong. You may want to suggest that they write this principle next to Alma 20:15.)

  • What can be challenging about standing up for what we know is right when others try to persuade us to do something wrong?

  • When have you chosen to stand up for what is right when others were trying to persuade you to do something wrong?

Invite students to ponder ways in which they might better stand up for what is right when others try to persuade them to do something wrong.

Invite the partnerships to study the verses listed in rows 3–4 and discuss the accompanying questions. Ask them to report what they have found. Then ask:

  • What principle can we learn from the influence that Ammon’s words and his love for King Lamoni had on Lamoni’s father? (Though students may share a variety of principles, be sure the following is clear: As we show love and teach truth, we can help others soften their hearts and become receptive to the gospel. You may want to encourage students to write this principle next to Alma 20:26–27.)

  • Why do you think showing love and teaching truth can help others soften their hearts and become more receptive to the gospel?

Conclude by testifying that our love for others and the words we speak can help them become more receptive to the gospel. Invite students to apply the principles you have discussed in this lesson.

Supplemental Teaching Ideas

Alma 19:36. “All people who will repent and believe on his name”

You may want to invite a student to read the following account, which illustrates the principle that the Lord’s arm is extended to all people who will repent and believe on his name:

“A while ago my bishop and priests quorum adviser challenged our quorum to give away two copies of the Book of Mormon within a year. I took the challenge to heart and always had a Book of Mormon on me (in the car, in my backpack, etc.). Several people accepted copies, but nobody really showed any further interest.

“Then one day in June, I was filling up my car with gasoline after work and saw a coworker buying cigarettes. Because of his smoking and his rough personality, I never thought about sharing the gospel with him. He came over to talk to me, and we talked about music and movies. When I explained that I don’t watch movies with vulgarity, violence, or immorality, the topic changed to religion. I grabbed the Book of Mormon from the backseat of my car, wrote my testimony inside the cover, and gave it to him.

“The next time I worked with him, I asked if he had read any of it. He said, ‘Jeff, I read the introduction, and I know it’s true. I want to know more and be baptized.’

“That really shocked me. I gave the missionaries his address so that they could teach him, and I took him to church with me. He loved it. He set a date for his baptism.

“Before his baptism, he told me that he had been offered a really good job, but he had to act immediately. It was in Alaska, and he was leaving in two days. So we found the address of the meetinghouse in town, and then he left.

“Over the next few months we kept in touch, but he made no progress toward baptism. Then one day he called and told me he had contacted the missionaries and was going to be baptized that Saturday.

“Now he holds the Aaronic Priesthood and has blessed the sacrament several times.

“This goes to show that you never know who will accept the gospel, so share it with everyone, and God will provide a way” (Jeffrey Olson, “Invite All to Come unto Christ: You Never Know,” New Era, Sept 2011, AP14).

Encourage students to look for opportunities to invite others to come unto Christ.

video iconAlma 19:31–36. Video presentation—“Inviting All to Come unto Christ: Sharing the Gospel”

To help students see how our testimonies and righteous examples can help others turn to the Lord, show the video titled “Inviting All to Come unto Christ: Sharing the Gospel” (4:30), which can be found on LDS.org. As students watch the video, encourage them to think about how they might share their testimonies and set righteous examples for family members and friends. This video shows how more than 20 young men either joined the Church or returned to Church activity because one young man shared his testimony.

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Alma 20:26–27. Showing love to others

To illustrate the principle that as we show love and teach truth, we can help others soften their hearts and become receptive to the gospel, you may want to invite a student to read aloud the following statement by Elder Paul E. Koelliker of the Seventy. Invite the class to listen for the effect that love had in this account.

Elder Paul E. Koelliker

“Two young missionaries knocked on a door, hoping to find someone to receive their message. The door opened, and a rather large man greeted them in a less-than-friendly voice: ‘I thought I told you not to knock on my door again. I warned you before that if you ever came back, it would not be a pleasant experience. Now leave me alone.’ He quickly closed the door.

“As the elders walked away, the older, more experienced missionary put his arm on the younger missionary’s shoulder to comfort and encourage him. Unknown to them, the man watched them through the window to be sure they understood his message. He fully expected to see them laugh and make light of his curt response to their attempted visit. However, as he witnessed the expression of kindness between the two missionaries, his heart was instantly softened. He reopened the door and asked the missionaries to come back and share their message with him.

“… This principle of having love one to another and developing our ability to be Christ-centered in how we think, speak, and act is fundamental in becoming disciples of Christ” (Paul E. Koelliker, “He Truly Loves Us,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2012, 17).

  • When have you seen someone’s heart soften because of love?