The record of the prophet Abinadi’s preaching to King Noah and his priests continues in Mosiah 15–17. He testified of Jesus Christ’s role as the Redeemer. One of Noah’s priests, Alma, believed Abinadi. King Noah cast Alma out of his court and had Abinadi burned to death. Abinadi was true to God in all circumstances.
Take a few minutes to find and circle the words redeem, redeemed, and redemption in Mosiah 15–16. The repetition of a word in a block of scripture often signals an important point in the writer’s message. As you study today, watch for what Abinadi taught about being redeemed.
To help you understand Jesus Christ’s role as Redeemer, consider the following diagram:
Imagine you have broken a law and have been sentenced to the harshest penalty the law allows. Perhaps the punishment includes large fines, time in prison, or even death. How might you feel facing such penalties? Can you think of any legal and honest way to escape these punishments?
Write Me under the word Offender and Justice under the word Punishment in the diagram. We have all broken the laws of God at some time and must meet the demands of justice. The demands of justice require each sinner to receive the punishment connected to the sin.
Read the following statement by Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and underline the two consequences of breaking God’s laws: “Justice … requires that every broken law be satisfied. When you obey the laws of God, you are blessed, but there is no additional credit earned that can be saved to satisfy the laws that you break. If not resolved, broken laws can cause your life to be miserable and would keep you from returning to God” (“The Atonement Can Secure Your Peace and Happiness,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2006, 42).
The consequences of breaking God’s laws include misery and being unable to live with God. Read Mosiah 15:1, 7–9, and mark phrases that indicate how the Savior’s Atonement satisfies the demands of justice.
Use a dictionary to find definitions for the following words:
Redeem (Mosiah 15:1)
Intercession (Mosiah 15:8)
Betwixt (Mosiah 15:9)
You may want to write part of these definitions next to the verses.
Sometimes people are confused by Abinadi’s description of Jesus Christ in Mosiah 15:2–5 as (1) the Son of God the Father and (2) as the Father. The following statement by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explains Jesus Christ’s divine nature this way: “As Abinadi taught, Christ was ‘conceived by the power of God’ (Mosiah 15:3) and therefore has the powers of the Father within him. In addition to that divine lineal relationship, Christ also acts as the Father in that he is the Creator of heaven and earth [see Mosiah 15:4], is the father of our spiritual rebirth and salvation, and is faithful in honoring—and therefore claiming the power of—the will of his Father above that of his own will” (Christ and the New Covenant , 183–84).
Study Mosiah 15:5–7, thinking about the price Jesus Christ paid to redeem you, or to stand between you and the demands of justice. On the diagram above, write Jesus Christ between Offender and Punishment.
It is important to understand that the Savior does not erase the demands of justice but stands between justice and us. If we repent, He satisfies justice’s demands by taking the punishment in our behalf.
Complete the following activities in your scripture journal:
Using what you learned in the previous assignment, answer the following questions in your scripture journal:
Jesus Christ satisfies the demands of justice for all who will repent. The price the Savior paid for us is a very personal gift for any who choose to repent and do the will of the Father. Read Mosiah 15:10, and underline the phrase “he shall see his seed.”
Read Mosiah 15:10–12 and the following statement by Elder Merrill J. Bateman, an emeritus member of the Seventy:
“The prophet Abinadi … states that ‘when his soul has been made an offering for sin he shall see his seed’ (Mosiah 15:10). Abinadi then identifies the Savior’s seed as the prophets and those who follow them. For many years I thought of the Savior’s experience in the garden and on the cross as places where a large mass of sin was heaped upon Him. Through the words of Alma, Abinadi, Isaiah, and other prophets, however, my view has changed. Instead of an impersonal mass of sin, there was a long line of people, as Jesus felt ‘our infirmities’ (Hebrews 4:15), ‘[bore] our griefs, … carried our sorrows … [and] was bruised for our iniquities’ (Isaiah 53:4–5).
“The Atonement was an intimate, personal experience in which Jesus came to know how to help each of us” (“A Pattern for All,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2005, 75–76).
Answer the following questions in your scripture journal:
What do you think it means to become the seed of Jesus Christ? (see Mosiah 15:12).
What are you doing to make sure you are numbered among the seed of Jesus Christ?
You may wish to personalize Mosiah 15:10 by writing your name in place of “his seed” in the portion of the verse that you have underlined. Ponder for a moment what it means to have a Redeemer who has seen and knows you personally.
What are the consequences of someone refusing to be redeemed? Look again at Mosiah 16:5. What happens in the diagram depicted earlier in this lesson if the offender persists in sin and refuses to repent? Read Doctrine and Covenants 19:16–17 to discover what will happen to those who refuse to accept the Savior’s redeeming act through repentance.
Abinadi taught that the redemption of Jesus Christ includes not only a rescue from sin but also from death. Everyone will be resurrected; however, some will be resurrected before others. Abinadi used the term “first resurrection” to explain that the righteous and innocent would be resurrected before the rebellious (see Mosiah 15:21–22). The righteous will be redeemed from death in the first resurrection and the wicked must wait to be resurrected until after the Millennium (see D&C 76:85, 106).
Reflect upon the verses you have studied in Mosiah 15. Imagine you had the opportunity for a messenger to deliver a message from you to the Savior. Record what you would write in that message, based upon what He has done for you.
The Savior wants to bring us back into the presence of our Heavenly Father. He intercedes, mediates, and pleads on our behalf. The Savior has paid the demands of justice for us if we will repent.
Have you ever witnessed someone stand up for what was right when it was difficult for him or her to do so? What was the outcome?
When Abinadi concluded his message, one of the priests, named Alma, tried to convince the king that Abinadi had spoken the truth and should be released. The king cast Alma out and sent servants to slay him. Alma hid and wrote the words of Abinadi.
Alma’s conversion is significant. Because he recorded the words of Abinadi, many generations and peoples have been blessed. The fruits of Alma’s conversion will be more apparent as you study the upcoming chapters. The king and his priests counseled together for three days before sentencing Abinadi to death (see Mosiah 17:1–6, 13).
Which of Abinadi’s last words impressed you the most?
Why do you think Abinadi’s words affected King Noah the way they did?
What kind of influence did the priests have on King Noah?
How does Abinadi’s example help inspire you to be true to God in all circumstances?
President Gordon B. Hinckley declared: “Be strong—in standing for the right. We live in an age of compromise and acquiescence. In situations with which we are daily confronted, we know what is right, but under pressure from our peers and the beguiling voices of those who would persuade us, we capitulate. We compromise. We acquiesce. We give in, and we are ashamed of ourselves. … We must cultivate the strength to follow our convictions” (“Building Your Tabernacle,” Ensign, Nov. 1992, 52).
Write I can be true to God in all circumstances in your scriptures next to Mosiah 17:9–12.
To personalize Abinadi’s moral courage and personal conviction, read Mosiah 17:20 and complete the following sentence in your scripture journal: I need to be true to God when …
As you conclude today’s lesson, think about a family member or friend who may benefit from hearing what you learned and felt today. If possible, share with him or her what you learned and your desire to be true to the Lord during difficult times.
Write the following at the bottom of today’s assignments in your scripture journal:
I have studied Mosiah 15–17 and completed this lesson on (date).
Additional questions, thoughts, and insights I would like to share with my teacher: