Chapter 54: Moroni 7

Book of Mormon Teacher Manual, (2009), 196–99


Introduction

Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught that righteous motives give “life and legitimacy to the acts of the believer” (Pure in Heart [1998], 16). Mormon also taught the importance of acting with righteous intent. He taught that there is a difference between doing good works with real intent and simply going through the motions. Through Mormon’s teachings, students can grow in their understanding that faith, hope, and charity should guide all our actions.

Some Doctrines and Principles

Suggestions for Teaching

Moroni 7:3–4. Followers of Jesus Christ Walk Peaceably with Others

Explain that Moroni 7 contains teachings of Moroni’s father, Mormon. Ask students to read Moroni 7:3–4 and compare it to Doctrine and Covenants 19:23.

  • How did Mormon know that the Church members of his day were “peaceable followers of Christ”?

Write peaceable walk on the board.

  • What does this phrase mean to you?

Invite students to share examples they have seen of Church members walking peaceably with others.

Moroni 7:5–11. Our Intent Is Important to God

Share the following case study: Two men in an elders quorum spent an entire day helping a widowed mother clean and repair her home. The first man served only because his quorum president had assigned him to do so. Although the second man had also received the assignment from the quorum president, his primary reason for serving was that he saw others in need and sincerely wanted to help.

  • Even though both men served the same amount of time, why might their service be of different value to God and to themselves?

  • Why are our intentions important?

To illustrate this principle, you may want to share the story told by President Marion G. Romney on page 389 in the student manual.

Invite students to read Moroni 7:5–11 silently. As they read, write on the board What is Mormon teaching? When they have finished, lead a short discussion about this question. Ensure that part of the discussion focuses on our motives for giving gifts or providing service.

Invite students to silently reflect on times when they have given gifts, offered service, prayed, or obeyed commandments with sincerity. Then invite them to contrast those experiences with times when they have done such things without sincerity.

  • Why do our motives make a difference when we give a gift or offer service?

Moroni 7:12–19. Everything That Persuades Us to Do Good Comes from God

Invite students to read Moroni 7:12–19 silently and mark each instance of the words good and evil. Write the following headings on the board: It is of God and It is of the devil. Then have students reread Moroni 7:13, 16–17, looking for Mormon’s counsel on how we can tell if something is of God or of the devil (note that Moroni 7:16–17 is a scripture mastery passage ). Write students’ answers on the board, as shown in the following chart:

It is of God

It is of the devil

Invites and entices to do good continually

Persuades to do evil

Invites to love God

Persuades to not believe in Christ

Invites to serve God

Persuades to not serve God

Persuades to believe in Christ

Persuades to deny Christ

Guide students in a discussion about how these truths apply in their lives. The following questions may be helpful:

  • How does the Light of Christ help us judge righteously and search diligently for that which is good? (To ensure that students understand the Light of Christ, you may want to ask them to review the commentary for Moroni 7:12–19 on pages 389–90 in the student manual.)

  • In the last general conference, what words of counsel did we receive that persuade us to do good?

  • What are some ways friends have helped you love and serve God?

To remind students that God seeks to help them, share the following statement by Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles:

“Let’s begin with what we know. Good comes from God; evil comes from the devil. [See Moroni 7:12.] They are not, however, equal forces that are fighting each other in the universe. At the head of all that is good is the Christ. …

“The devil, on the other hand, ‘persuadeth men to do evil.’ [Moroni 7:17.] ‘He [has] fallen from heaven … [has] become miserable forever,’ [2 Nephi 2:18] and now works ‘that all men might be miserable like unto himself.’ [2 Nephi 2:27.] He is a liar and a loser. [See Doctrine and Covenants 93:25; see also Bible Dictionary, “Devil,” 656.]

“The power of the Savior and the power of the devil are not truly comparable. … On this planet, however, evil has been allowed a position of influence to give us the chance to choose between good and evil” (in Conference Report, Apr. 2005, 50; or Ensign, May 2005, 46).

  • Why is it important to remember that the power of Christ is greater than the power of the devil?

Moroni 7:19–32. Faith in Christ Helps Us “Lay Hold upon Every Good Thing”

Explain that the scriptures often teach through repetition. Have students scan Moroni 7:19–21, looking for counsel that is repeated. (The counsel is to “lay hold upon every good thing.”)

To help students see what they can learn from the counsel to “lay hold upon every good thing,” write lay hold and touch on the board. Ask a student to come to the front of the class. Place a copy of the Book of Mormon in front of the student. Then ask the student to demonstrate the difference between laying hold on a good thing and touching a good thing.

  • How does this relate to the verses we just studied? What do you think it means to “lay hold” on the scriptures?

Encourage students to follow Mormon’s counsel and truly “lay hold upon every good thing.”

Ask students to read Moroni 10:30. Emphasize that in this verse, Moroni exhorts us to “come unto Christ” and “lay hold upon every good gift.”

Have students cross-reference Moroni 10:30 with Moroni 7:20. Ask a student to read Moroni 7:20. (You may want to point out that while we are counseled to lay hold on things that are good, we are warned that we should not even touch things that are evil.)

  • How does faith in Jesus Christ help us lay hold upon good things and avoid the bad?

Ask a student to read Moroni 7:22–25.

  • Without Jesus Christ and His Atonement, why would we be unable to receive any good thing? (As students discuss this question, you may want to have them read Alma 22:13–14.)

  • How does this truth influence your feelings about the Savior and His Atonement?

Write the following verse numbers on the board, leaving off the words in parentheses:

  • 22, 25 (angels)

  • 23 (prophets)

  • 25 (scriptures and faith)

  • 26 (prayer)

  • 28 (faith)

  • 32 (the Holy Ghost)

Ask students to read these verses in Moroni 7, looking for blessings the Lord provides so we can come unto Him and “lay hold upon every good thing.” Write students’ answers on the board. Possible answers are provided in parentheses in the preceding list.

  • How have these blessings helped you come unto Christ?

Moroni 7:27–39. The Day of Miracles Has Not Ceased

Ask students to list miracles they have read about in the scriptures. You may want to write their answers on the board.

  • How would you answer the question in Moroni 7:27?

  • What are some miracles you have witnessed?

  • In Moroni 7:31, what reasons does Mormon give for why angels appear to people? (To call them to repentance, to do the work of the covenants of the Father, and to teach “the chosen vessels of the Lord.”)

Explain that in Moroni 7:32–34, Mormon identifies specific miracles that each of us can receive. Ask students to identify these miracles. (Answers may include the guidance of the Holy Ghost, the fulfillment of covenants, the power to do anything that the Lord wants us to do, repentance, and salvation.)

  • How are these blessings miraculous?

Have students pair up and read Moroni 7:29–35. Ask them to work together to find the process the Lord uses to bring the miracle of salvation to us. After sufficient time, have students share their answers with the rest of the class. As they do, ask a student to write a summary of the process on the board. It may look something like this:

Angels minister to those of strong faith—chosen vessels of the Lord (see verses 29–31).

These people are prepared to bear testimony of Christ to others (see verse 31).

The way is prepared for the rest of Heavenly Father’s children to have faith (see verse 32).

We repent, come unto Christ, are baptized, and have faith so we can be saved (see verse 34).

  • How can your testimony help others increase in their faith?

Invite each student to read Moroni 7:38–39 and write a short paragraph describing what they will do to increase their faith in Christ.

Moroni 7:44–48. “Charity Never Faileth”

Before class, prepare copies of the following evaluation form:

On a scale of 1–10, how are you doing at developing each of these attributes of charity?

(0 = I do not possess this attribute; 10 = I am doing very well with this attribute)

Circle the number that best reflects your current status.

Invite students to read Moroni 7:44, 46 and 1 Corinthians 13:13.

  • What value did Mormon and the Apostle Paul place on charity?

Write the word charity on the board. Invite a student to read Moroni 7:45–47 (note that verse 45 is a scripture mastery verse ). Ask the student to pause after reading each description of charity. At each pause, ask another student to write the description on the board. (Note that the descriptions are listed in the evaluation form.)

As students study these verses together, you may want to direct them to the statements by Elders Dallin H. Oaks and Jeffrey R. Holland on pages 393–94 in the student manual. The statement by Elder Oaks is also available on the companion DVD A.

  • Why do you think we are nothing if we do not have charity?

To help students evaluate how they are developing charity in their lives, distribute copies of the evaluation form. Emphasize that their answers will be personal. The papers should not be handed in.

Read and discuss Moroni 7:48 with students. Emphasize that Mormon taught us what we must do to “be filled with this love,” or to develop charity.

With verse 48 in mind, encourage students to carefully examine the answers on their personal evaluations and mark the areas in which they want to improve. Invite them to turn the evaluation over and write what they will do to receive the pure love of Christ and become more charitable toward others.

Jesus Christ is the perfect example of charity. Conclude this lesson by sharing the following statement by Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin (1917–2008) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles:

“Note that charity is given only to those who seek it, only to those who earnestly pray for it, only to those who are disciples of Christ. Before we can be filled with this pure love, we must start at the beginning with the first principle of the gospel. We must have ‘first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.’ [Articles of Faith 1:4.]” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1998, 32; or Ensign, Nov. 1998, 26).

Bear your testimony of the influence charity has in your life.