Mosiah 25 provides a conclusion to the account of the people of Zeniff (see Mosiah 7–24). Limhi’s people and Alma’s followers returned to Zarahemla and were united safely under King Mosiah’s rule. After these groups arrived, Limhi and his people were baptized. King Mosiah gave Alma authority to establish churches throughout the land and to regulate the affairs of the Church of God among the people of Nephi.
Suggestions for Teaching
Those gathered in Zarahemla unite and become known as Nephites
Invite students to think of accounts they have read or heard that illustrate how the Lord has helped someone by providing guidance, strength, protection, or deliverance. You might suggest that they think of accounts in the scriptures, Church history, or the lives of family members or friends. As an example, share the following story told by a young woman who wandered ahead of her group and walked down a hill during an outdoor ward activity:
“A warning voice, firm yet silent, said ‘Turn back.’ I almost ignored it, but it came again. This time I listened and returned to the group. As we started down, we saw two enormous black bulls walking fast and angrily up the hill. The biggest one started pawing the ground as he stared at us. … Our priesthood leader distracted it, and we were able to climb over a fence to safety.
“As we entered camp again, I realized that if I hadn’t listened to the warning from the Spirit, I could have been badly hurt or even killed. I knew that Heavenly Father cared about me personally and had kept me safe. I am so thankful to the Lord for that warning. This experience strengthened my testimony and gave me a greater love for the Lord” (“Turn Back,” New Era, Nov. 2010, 47).
Invite one or two students to share a story they thought of that illustrates the goodness and power of God in the life of someone else. Ask the class:
How does it help you to hear examples of God’s goodness and power in the lives of others?
Summarize Mosiah 25:1–6 by explaining that after Limhi’s people and Alma’s people (all of whom were descendants of the people of Zeniff) escaped from bondage and united with the people living in Zarahemla, King Mosiah read their records to all the people. Have students read Mosiah 25:7 silently, looking for the general response of the people to the accounts of God’s dealings with the people of Zeniff. Invite a student to share what he or she has found.
Copy the following chart on the board. Explain that in Mosiah 25:8–11, we learn more about how the people responded to the accounts of Zeniff’s and Alma’s people. Ask students to search the scripture references for what the people heard and how they felt about it. Answers for the first reference are given in parentheses as an example.
What the people heard
How the people felt
(They heard how Limhi’s people were delivered from bondage.)
(It filled them with great joy.)
When students have had enough time to study the scripture references, invite a few of them to write on the board what they have found. Ask students to summarize what they have learned from Mosiah 25:8–11 by stating principles from this passage that they could apply to themselves. As students respond, help them recognize that by studying the records of God’s dealings with others, we can feel joy and gratitude for the goodness of God. (As students read these verses, they may also notice the sadness and loss that result from sin.)
To what sources can we turn to learn of others’ experiences with the goodness of God? (Write students’ responses on the board. They might include the scriptures, general conference addresses, Church magazines, biographies of Church leaders and others, and family histories.)
Invite students to think of times when they have learned of God’s goodness to others from the sources listed on the board.
How have you benefited from learning of God’s goodness to others from one of these sources?
What do you think could be the long-term effect on someone who regularly learns of God’s goodness in His dealings with others?
Encourage students to take time on their own to choose one of the sources listed on the board and search for inspiring stories of God’s goodness.
Alma establishes the Church of God throughout the land of the Nephites
To prepare students to study the organization and teachings of the Church among the Nephites, ask:
When have you attended a Latter-day Saint ward or branch other than your home ward or branch? What similarities did you notice between your home ward or branch and the one you visited?
How is it helpful to see that the organization and teachings of the Church are the same in every ward or branch of the Church?
Summarize Mosiah 25:14–17 by explaining that after Mosiah spoke and read to the people, he invited Alma to teach them. Then King Limhi and his people requested baptism. Alma baptized them and began organizing the Church throughout the land.
Invite a few students to take turns reading aloud from Mosiah 25:18–22. Ask the class to look for how the Church was organized and governed among the Nephites in Alma’s day. To help students understand that the organization of the Church ensures that all members can receive the truth, ask questions such as the following:
How does the Church among the Nephites resemble the Church today? (We have wards and branches that are like the “different bodies” mentioned in Mosiah 25:21. Branch presidents, bishops, and stake presidents are like the priests and teachers who governed the Church in Alma’s day.)
According to Mosiah 25:15–16, 22, what truths did the priests and teachers of the Church emphasize in Mosiah’s day? (You may want to point out that the Lord has given similar instruction to parents, Church leaders, and missionaries in the latter days. [See D&C 15:6; 19:31; 68:25.])
Why is it important to continually teach repentance and faith in God?
Ask students to read Mosiah 25:23–24, looking for phrases that describe the blessings received by those who joined the Church of God.
How were the people blessed as a result of being baptized and joining the Church of God?
In what ways has the Lord blessed you through your membership in the Church?
Write the following principle on the board: As we take upon ourselves the name of Jesus Christ and live accordingly, the Lord will pour out His Spirit upon us.
Testify to students that the blessings they have experienced as members of the Church can increase as they keep their covenants and receive the Spirit.
Commentary and Background Information
Mosiah 25:17–22. Priesthood authority among the Nephites
The Book of Mormon does not give specific details about the priesthood held by prophets and other brethren among the Nephites and Lamanites. However, the references to ordinances and the manner in which the Church was conducted provide sufficient evidence that they held the Melchizedek Priesthood. President Joseph Fielding Smith taught that “the priesthood which [the Nephites] held and under which they officiated was the Priesthood after the holy order, the order of the Son of God [see Alma 13:1–20]. This higher priesthood can officiate in every ordinance of the gospel” (Doctrines of Salvation, ed. Bruce R. McConkie, 3 vols. [1954–56], 3:87).
For additional information about priesthood authority in the Book of Mormon, see the Commentary and Background Information for Mosiah 18.