Mosiah 11–17

Book of Mormon Teacher Resource Manual, (2004), 110–119


Introduction

King Noah’s people became so wicked that the Lord sent a prophet named Abinadi to warn them of their destruction if they did not repent. These chapters give an account of the ministry of Abinadi and record his testimony, which focused on the Savior Jesus Christ and His Atonement. Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, said, “The testimony [Abinadi] bore as he called an apostate king, Noah, and his priests to repentance is one of the most significant doctrinal discourses in the Book of Mormon. The king and his priests, except one, rejected Abinadi’s teachings and had him put to death. That one was Alma” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1989, 10–11; or Ensign, May 1989, 10).

Elder Robert D. Hales, also a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, taught: “The firmness of Abinadi’s faith is found in this poignant entry in the sacred record: ‘And now, when Abinadi had said these words, he fell, having suffered death by fire; yea, having been put to death because he would not deny the commandments of God, having sealed the truth of his words by his death.’ (See Mosiah 17:6–20; italics added.)

“… What a powerful example Abinadi should be to all of us! He courageously obeyed the Lord’s commandments—even though it cost him his life!” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1996, 49; or Ensign, May 1996, 35).

Some Important Gospel Principles to Look For

Additional Resources

  • Book of Mormon Student Manual: Religion 121 and 122, pp. 62–64.

Suggestions for Teaching

Mosiah 11–12. Wickedness leads to misery and spiritual destruction. (45–50 minutes)

Make two paths in your classroom, one that leads to pictures of a temple and a happy family, and another that leads to a picture of a prison or prisoners. Show students the paths and talk about both destinations. Ask which of the destinations they prefer. Place a student who wants to get to the temple and the happy family on the path that leads to the prison. Ask:

  • Can you get to your desired destination from here? Why not?

  • What would you think if someone said they wanted one destination but chose the other path?

  • How could this compare to your own life?

  • In real life, is it always easy to tell which path leads to which destination? Why or why not?

Explain that while few people seem confused about the destination they want to reach, some are confused about which path leads to it. Tell students that today they will study about a people who wanted happiness but continually chose the path that led to unhappiness.

Read Mosiah 10:19–21 to find the success the people of Zeniff had over the Lamanites. Ask:

  • What key phrase in these verses helps us understand why they were successful? (“Putting their trust in the Lord” [v. 19].)

  • Were these people on a path that led to happiness or misery?

  • Read Mosiah 11:1–2. When Zeniff’s son Noah came to power, what change occurred in the path the people followed?

Write the accompanying chart on the board with the right-hand column blank. Invite students to read the verses and underline the words and phrases that describe the sins of Noah and his people. Then fill in the chart as a class.

Reference

Sins of Noah and His People

Mosiah 11:2

selfishness, polygamy, whoredoms

Mosiah 11:3–4, 6

greed, laziness, idolatry

Mosiah 11:5

pride

Mosiah 11:7, 11

vanity, deceitfulness

Mosiah 11:14

setting hearts on riches, sexual immorality

Mosiah 11:15

drunkenness

Mosiah 11:18–19

boasting in their own strength

Mosiah 11:20, 26

rejecting the prophet

Mosiah 11:27–28

anger, desiring murder

Mosiah 11:29

hardening their hearts, refusing to repent

  • Read Mosiah 11:20–25. According to these verses, what path were Noah and his people on?

  • What did Abinadi teach them they could do to change their destination?

  • How can you tell what path you are on?

  • How do people switch paths today?

  • Why do you think it is important to consider the path you are on?

Read Mosiah 12:1–8 and look for the warning Abinadi gave the people. Ask:

  • What path did he encourage them to take? Why?

  • How did he encourage them to change paths?

Read Mosiah 12:9–16 looking for the people’s reaction to Abinadi’s message. Add the following to the chart on the board:

Mosiah 12:9

being angry with and binding Abinadi

Mosiah 12:14

calling Abinadi a liar and saying his prophecies were false

Mosiah 12:15

relying on their own strength

According to Mosiah 12:15 what destination did Noah’s people think they were pursuing? Read Mosiah 12:17–19 and add the following to the chart on the board:

Mosiah 12:17

imprisoning Abinadi

Mosiah 12:18–19

trying to trick Abinadi

Read Mosiah 12:25–37 and ask:

  • Who began asking questions? (see v. 19).

  • Who asked the questions in the end?

  • What questions did Abinadi ask?

  • What principles of everyday living can we learn from these teachings of Abinadi?

Invite students to choose one or two of Abinadi’s teachings that they struggle with and write on a piece of paper a few ways they could improve in that area.

Mosiah 11:26; 13:1–7. The Lord protects His righteous servants until their mission is complete. (10–15 minutes)

Tell students that in the early history of the Church, mobs in Missouri surrounded the town of Far West, where many Church members had gathered. Invite a student to read the following account:

“To avoid bloodshed, Joseph Smith and others agreed to meet with militia leaders, who … arrested them. A court-martial that evening summarily sentenced Joseph Smith and his associates to be shot, and [Major General] Lucas ordered Brig. General Alexander Doniphan to execute them at dawn. Doniphan thought the order illegal and heroically refused to carry it out, declaring that he would bring to account anyone who tried to do it” (“Missouri Conflict,” in Daniel H. Ludlow, ed., Encyclopedia of Mormonism, 5 vols. [1992], 2:931).

Explain that there were many times when the life of the Prophet was threatened. Have students read Doctrine and Covenants 122:9 and find the Lord’s promise to Joseph while he was imprisoned in Missouri. Read the following account by William Taylor, who was the Prophet’s companion for several days in 1842 while the Prophet was in hiding from enemies who sought his life:

“I said to him once:

“‘Brother Joseph, don’t you get frightened when all those hounding wolves are after you?’

“And he answered:

“‘No, I am not afraid; the Lord said he would protect me, and I have full confidence in His word.’” (in “Joseph Smith, the Prophet,” Young Woman’s Journal, Dec. 1906, 548).

Invite students to read Luke 4:28–30, and ask:

  • What did the people of Nazareth try to do to the Savior?

  • How did He avoid them?

Elder Bruce R. McConkie explained, “Evidently our Lord’s enemies were restrained in some unusual way from carrying out their murderous intentions” (Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, 1:162).

Have students read Mosiah 11:26 and compare it with the accounts of Joseph Smith and the Savior. Read Mosiah 13:1–7 and ask:

  • What did the king command?

  • How did the servants respond?

  • What saved Abinadi’s life?

  • According to these verses, why did the Lord preserve Abinadi’s life at this time?

  • What did Abinadi tell the people?

Invite a student to read the following statement by President Joseph Fielding Smith:

“May I say for the consolation of those who mourn, and for the comfort and guidance of all of us, that no righteous man is ever taken before his time” (address at the funeral of Elder Richard L. Evans, 4 Nov. 1971, 1).

  • What does this statement imply about the deaths of Joseph Smith, Abinadi, and Jesus Christ?

  • How could this statement apply to us?

  • What comfort can this statement be to us when a friend or family member dies?

Mosiah 13:11–35. Salvation comes through the Atonement of Jesus Christ to those who repent and obey God’s commandments. (15–20 minutes)

Write 2 + 2 + 2 = 6 on the board. Ask:

  • What would happen to this equation if one of the 2s were eliminated?

  • Could 2 + 2 ever equal 6?

Explain that the prophet Abinadi taught a true spiritual formula, but King Noah’s people tried to twist and destroy it, just as if someone tried to say 2 + 2 = 6.

Invite students to read Mosiah 12:29 and find the first question Abinadi asks in that verse. Explain that Abinadi spent the next chapter explaining aspects of the law of Moses. Write the numbers 1–10 on the board. Have a few students take turns reading aloud Mosiah 12:35; 13:11–24. Invite the rest of the class to follow along in Exodus 20:3–17 and to stop the readers whenever Abinadi recites one of the Ten Commandments. As the students discover each commandment, write it on the board by the appropriate number (see diagram).

Laws

Including the Ten Commandments

“No other gods before me.”

No “graven image.”

Don’t “take the name of the Lord … in vain.”

Keep the “sabbath day” holy.

“Honour thy father and thy mother.”

“Thou shalt not kill.”

“Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

“Thou shalt not steal.”

“Thou shalt not bear false witness.”

“Thou shalt not covet.”

Ask:

  • What did King Noah and his priests claim brought salvation? (see Mosiah 13:27).

  • Why did the Lord give Israel the law of Moses? (see vv. 29–30).

To summarize these questions, add the following to the diagram on the board:

What King Noah and His Priests Pretended to Believe

Laws

Including the Ten Commandments

“No other gods before me.”

No “graven image.”

Don’t “take the name of the Lord … in vain.”

Keep the “sabbath day” holy.

“Honour thy father and thy mother.”

“Thou shalt not kill.”

“Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

“Thou shalt not steal.”

“Thou shalt not bear false witness.”

“Thou shalt not covet.”

+

Ordinances

Including Animal Sacrifice

=

Salvation

Invite students to read Mosiah 13:28, 30–35, and ask:

  • What did Noah and his priests leave out of the formula?

  • Why was the Atonement essential, even with the law? (see v. 28; see also 2 Nephi 2:5–7).

  • According to Abinadi, why was the law of Moses given? (see Mosiah 13:30–31).

Add the Atonement to the diagram on the board and change the heading to What Abinadi Taught (see below). Ask:

  • What caused the children of Israel to misunderstand this doctrine? (The hardness of their hearts; see v. 32.)

  • How many prophets have taught about Jesus Christ and His Atonement? (see v. 33).

  • What did these prophets say He would do? (see vv. 34–35).

  • Read Mosiah 13:27; 3 Nephi 9:17–20. Why don’t we offer animal sacrifices today?

  • What ordinances does the Lord require in our day? (Note: Erase Animal Sacrifice in the second box and write the ordinances that the students name [for example baptism and the sacrament].)

  • Which of the laws delivered through Moses are still part of the gospel today? (Be sure students understand that the Ten Commandments are still in force.)

What Abinadi Taught

Laws

Including the Ten Commandments

“No other gods before me.”

No “graven image.”

Don’t “take the name of the Lord … in vain.”

Keep the “sabbath day” holy.

“Honour thy father and thy mother.”

“Thou shalt not kill.”

“Thou shalt not commit adultery.”

“Thou shalt not steal.”

“Thou shalt not bear false witness.”

“Thou shalt not covet.”

+

Ordinances

Including

Baptism
Sacrament

+

The Atonement

=

Salvation

Conclude by reading or having a student recite the third article of faith.

weekly iconMosiah 13:34–15:1. To work out the Atonement, Jesus Christ suffered for our griefs, transgressions, and sins. His death and Resurrection provide a way for every mortal to be resurrected. (50–55 minutes)

Invite students to compare Mosiah 13:34 with Mosiah 15:1. Ask: How are these verses similar? Invite students to underline the similar wording and cross-reference the two verses. Explain that these verses briefly summarize the “condescension” of Jesus Christ (see also 1 Nephi 11:26–33). In between these verses in Mosiah, Abinadi quotes Isaiah 53, one of the most powerful chapters in scripture dealing with the Savior and His Atonement. Of all that Abinadi could have said in the last moments of his life, he chose to quote this chapter, which explains doctrines stated briefly in Mosiah 13:34 and Mosiah 15:1.

Invite students to spend five minutes studying Mosiah 13:35–14:12. Whenever they find something about Jesus Christ or His Atonement, have them write on a piece of paper the reference and what it teaches. Invite them to share their findings, and list them on the board. These might include:

  • Mosiah 13:35. The Savior would bring to pass the resurrection of the dead.

  • Mosiah 13:35. He would be oppressed and afflicted.

  • Mosiah 14:2. He would look like an ordinary man.

  • Mosiah 14:3. He would know sorrow and grief and be hated and rejected.

  • Mosiah 14:4. He would suffer for our griefs and sorrows.

  • Mosiah 14:5. He would suffer for our transgressions and sins so we could be healed.

  • Mosiah 14:7. He would be the sacrificial lamb of the Father.

  • Mosiah 14:8–9, 12. He would be killed with the wicked.

  • Mosiah 14:10. He would work out the Atonement.

  • Mosiah 14:11. He would satisfy the demands of justice.

  • Mosiah 14:12. He would receive great rewards for His sacrifice.

As time allows, use some or all of the following questions, activities, and statements to study Mosiah 13:34–15:1 in more depth.

Read Alma 11:43–44 and ask:

    Mosiah 13:35

  • According to these verses, who will be resurrected?

  • What are the characteristics of a resurrected body?

  • What great event will occur after our resurrection?

    Mosiah 14:2

  • Who does him refer to in the phrase “before him”? (The Father.)

  • Read Luke 2:40. How does this describe the Father watching over His Son?

  • Read John 15:5. How are we like branches and Jesus Christ like the vine or trunk? (Discuss their answers.)

  • How were the people where the Lord grew up like the dry ground that surrounded them? (Just as a seed cannot grow in dry ground, the gospel could not easily grow in their hardened hearts.)

Share the following commentary on this verse in Isaiah from President Joseph Fielding Smith, then President of the Quorum of the Twelve:

“There was nothing about [Christ] to cause people to single him out. In appearance he was like men; and so it is expressed here by the prophet that he had no form or comeliness, that is, he was not so distinctive, so different from others that people would recognize him as the Son of God. He appeared as a mortal man” (Doctrines of Salvation, comp. Bruce R. McConkie, 3 vols. [1954–56], 1:23).

Not only would Jesus Christ look like other men, but He would be born into the world in the usual way. Ask: How would that fact be a great test of faith for some people?

Have students read Luke 4:16, 22, 28–29; 2 Nephi 10:3, and ask:

    Mosiah 14:3

  • How do these verses apply to Mosiah 14:3?

  • What does “we hid as it were our faces from him” mean? (They not only didn’t listen to Him, they shunned Him.)

Mosiah 14:4

Ask: According to this verse, what did Jesus suffer for in addition to our sins? Have students read Alma 7:11 and underline what the Savior suffered for. Read Matthew 11:28–30 and ask: How does knowing that the Savior suffered for all our pains, afflictions, and sicknesses help us understand these verses in Matthew?

Share the following statement by Elder Neal A. Maxwell, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve:

“Jesus’ daily mortal experiences and His ministry, to be sure, acquainted Him by observation with a sample of human sicknesses, grief, pains, sorrows, and infirmities which are ‘common to man’ (1 Corinthians 10:13). But the agonies of the Atonement were infinite and first-hand! Since not all human sorrow and pain is connected to sin, the full intensiveness of the Atonement involved bearing our pains, infirmities, and sicknesses, as well as our sins. Whatever our sufferings, we can safely cast our ‘care upon him; for he careth for [us]’ (1 Peter 5:7)” (“Not My Will, But Thine” [1988], 51).

Mosiah 14:4–5

Jesus Christ, as described in Isaiah 53 and Mosiah 14, is sometimes referred to as the “Suffering Servant.” Share the following explanation of the phrase “smitten of God” in verse 4:

“It has been common in many ages for people to assume that someone who suffers is being punished by God. Those who see the Servant consider that he is being punished for sin. Ironically, they are correct, but it is not his own sin that causes him to suffer; rather, it is ours” (Donald W. Parry and others, Understanding Isaiah [1998], 474).

Explain to students that another translation for bruised is “crushed.” Ask:

  • What are the blessings mentioned in verse 5 that come to us as a result of Christ’s suffering the Atonement?

  • How is oil extracted from olives? (They are crushed in an olive press.)

Tell students that the word Gethsemane is derived from “oil press.” Ask:

  • How might the meaning of Gethsemane, the name of the place where the Lord suffered the Atonement, relate to Isaiah’s statement that He was “crushed” for our iniquities?

  • Read Matthew 27:26. According to this verse, what happened to Jesus before He was crucified?

  • How does this relate to the last part of Mosiah 14:5? (Isaiah and Abinadi used the stripes of Jesus’s scourging to represent the healing powers of the Atonement; see also 1 Peter 2:24–25.)

Mosiah 14:6

Read 1 John 1:8 and ask: How does this verse relate to Mosiah 14:6?

Mosiah 14:7

Read Matthew 26:67–68; 27:29–30 and ask: According to these verses, what afflictions did Jesus bear? Read Mark 15:3–5; Luke 23:9 and ask: How do these verses apply to Mosiah 14:7? Point out that in Mosiah 14:6 we are the sheep and Jesus is the shepherd (see also John 10:14). Ask: Who is the lamb and the sheep in verse 7? Invite students to read John 1:29 and Moses 5:6–8 and list ways that Jesus is the Lamb of God.

Mosiah 14:8

Invite students to read Doctrine and Covenants 19:16–18 and look for how terrible it was for Jesus to be “stricken” with the “transgressions of [the] people.”

Mosiah 14:8, 10

Explain that the word generation in verse 8 might also be translated as “descendants.” Ask students to read Mosiah 5:7; 15:10–13 and look for who the “seed” or “descendants” of Christ are.

Mosiah 14:9

Read Matthew 27:38 and look for who the wicked were who died with the Savior. Read Matthew 27:57–60 and ask students to tell how Jesus was “with the rich in his death.”

Mosiah 14:10

Read John 3:16; 10:17–18 to find who willingly allowed the Atonement to be completed. (Both the Father and the Son.)

Mosiah 14:11

Invite students to read Mosiah 15:9; Alma 34:14–16 and look for how these verses apply to Mosiah 14:11. Ask:

  • Who made the last sacrifice?

  • What was satisfied?

  • Who was justified?

  • What made it possible for them to be justified?

Mosiah 14:12

Invite students to read Doctrine and Covenants 49:5–6 and look for the high office that Jesus attained. Read or sing “Jesus, Once of Humble Birth” (Hymns, no. 196). Invite students to pay close attention to the contrast between where Jesus was and where He is now. Read Romans 8:16–17 and look for what Jesus is willing to share with us.

Share your testimony of Jesus Christ and allow students time to do the same.

Mosiah 15:1–7. There are many ways that Jesus Christ is both a Father and a Son. There are also many similarities between Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. (15–20 minutes)

Ask students if all fathers are also sons. Ask: In what ways is Jesus both a Father and a Son? Have students read the first phrase of the chapter heading for Mosiah 15. Explain that there are several ways that Jesus is a Father and a Son. This does not mean that Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father are the same person. It means that Jesus can also be called “the Father.”

Have a student read aloud Mosiah 15:1–9. Invite half the class to look for examples of Jesus Christ in the role of a Son, and have the other half look for examples of Jesus Christ in the role of a Father. Have them stop the reader whenever they find an example of Jesus acting in one of these two roles, and list their findings on the board. Your list might include the following:

Jesus Christ in the Roles of Son and Father

Son

Father

He dwelt on the earth in the flesh (see v. 2).

He subjected His flesh to the will of the Father (see v. 2).

He was born into mortality (see v. 3).

He was conceived by the power of Heavenly Father (see v. 3).

He subjected the flesh and was slain (see v. 7).

He triumphed over death (see v. 8).

(Adapted from Jeffrey R. Holland, Christ and the New Covenant: The Messianic Message of the Book of Mormon [1997], 192.)

To summarize the ways that Jesus Christ is a Father, share the following statement by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland: “There are ways in which Christ is so united with his Father that in some assignments he rightfully plays a fatherly role and rightfully bears the title of Father in doing so” (Christ and the New Covenant, 183).

Mosiah 15 not only explains how Jesus Christ is a Father and a Son but also deals with some similarities between Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father. Write the following sentences on the board, leaving blanks in place of the words in italics. Have students read Mosiah 15:4–5, and invite them to fill in the blanks.

  • They are “one God” because They both participated in the Creation of heaven and earth.

  • The Son’s will is the same as the Father’s.

Ask:

  • Do the Father and the Son have other similarities? (One answer is that They look like each other; see Hebrews 1:3.)

  • Are They the same person?

To find more ways They are similar, share the following statement by Elder Bruce R. McConkie:

“The Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are one God in a sense far greater than merely being one in purpose. …

“In the exalted family of the Gods, the Father and the Son are one. They have the same character, perfections, and attributes. They think the same thoughts, speak the same words, perform the same acts, have the same desires, and do the same works. They possess the same power, have the same mind, know the same truths, live in the same light and glory. To know one is to know the other; to see one is to see the other; to hear the voice of one is to hear the voice of the other. Their unity is perfect. The Son is in the express image of his Father’s person; each has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; and both reign in power, might, and dominion over all the creations of their hands” (The Promised Messiah, 5, 9).

Ask students to read 3 Nephi 12:48 looking for who else is invited to become like the Father and the Son. Read together Moroni 7:48 and look for a way we can become more like the Father and the Son. Encourage students to choose an area of their life that needs improvement and to determine to become more like the Father and the Son in that area.

Mosiah 15:20–27; 16:8–11. Righteous people, including children, will rise in the resurrection of the just. Wicked people will rise in the resurrection of the unjust. (15–20 minutes)

Ask: Have any of you ever lost a loved one through death? Invite a few students to share some of the difficulties of dealing with their loss. (Note: Be careful not to intrude on sensitive feelings.) Ask: How does a knowledge of the gospel help us cope with death? Read Mosiah 16:8 and look for what takes away the “sting” of death.

Read Doctrine and Covenants 76:17 and look for two divisions in the Resurrection. Write on the board Resurrection of the Just and Resurrection of the Unjust. Tell students that the prophet Abinadi describes those who are part of these two resurrections. Divide the class into two groups. Invite the first group to study Mosiah 15:20–25 and answer the following questions. (These questions could be written on the board under Resurrection of the Just.)

  1. 1.

    Who broke the bands of death? (see v. 20).

  2. 2.

    Who is included in the resurrection of the just (which includes the “first resurrection” spoken of by Abinadi)? (see v. 22).

  3. 3.

    Where do they go? (see v. 23).

  4. 4.

    What do they receive? (see v. 23).

  5. 5.

    According to verse 24, what other group of people take part in the resurrection of the just?

  6. 6.

    Who else participates in the resurrection of the just? (see v. 25).

Invite the other group to study Mosiah 15:26–27; 16:10–11; Revelation 20:4–5; Doctrine and Covenants 76:102–6 and answer the following questions. (These could be written on the board under Resurrection of the Unjust.)

  1. 1.

    Who must wait for the resurrection of the unjust? (see Mosiah 15:26).

  2. 2.

    Why can’t these people participate in the resurrection of the just? (see vv. 26–27).

  3. 3.

    Who will these people live with? (see Mosiah 16:11).

  4. 4.

    When will those of the resurrection of the unjust be resurrected? (After the Millennium; see Revelation 20:4–5.)

  5. 5.

    What characteristics do those who take part in the resurrection of the unjust have? (see D&C 76:102–4).

  6. 6.

    Where do these people go? (see Mosiah 16:11; D&C 76:105–6).

Invite a spokesperson from the first group to teach the class the answers to the first set of questions. Then have a spokesperson from the second group teach the class the answers to the second set of questions.

Mosiah 16:13–17:12. The truth affects people in different ways. Righteous people rejoice in the truth, while wicked people reject it. (5–10 minutes)

Ask students to imagine they are in a sacrament meeting. As they walk out they hear one person say, “That was a wonderful meeting,” and another say, “That was the most boring meeting I’ve ever been to.” Ask:

  • What would cause such a different feeling among people in the same meeting?

  • Who would you say is mainly responsible for whether we receive the Spirit?

Explain that today you will study how hearing the same testimony of Christ caused one person to believe and others to be angry. Invite three students to take the following roles: Abinadi, King Noah, and Alma. Write the accompanying chart on the board (do not include the answers listed under “King Noah’s Reaction” and “Alma’s Reaction”).

Abinadi’s Words

King Noah’s Reaction

Alma’s Reaction

Didn’t believe

Was angry

Wanted to kill the prophet

Wanted to kill those who believed

Believed

Spoke in favor of the prophet

Was willing to risk his life to obey

Invite the student playing the role of Abinadi to read Abinadi’s last testimony of Christ as found in Mosiah 16:13–15. Invite the second and third students to read the reactions of Noah (Mosiah 17:1, 3, 5) and Alma (Mosiah 17:2, 4). Have the class describe the reactions of the two men. List their responses on the board under the appropriate headings. Discuss the following questions:

  • How do you react when you are told to repent and improve in some area of your life?

  • Does your reaction differ depending on what area of your life is in question? Why?

  • How can knowing these scriptures help you when you are asked to repent?

Read Mosiah 17:6–8 and ask:

  • According to King Noah, what did Abinadi say that made him worthy of death?

  • What could Abinadi have said to save himself?

  • In what way is King Noah’s reasoning illogical?

  • What does it teach about Noah? (He did not care about the coming of Christ; he cared only for himself.)

  • Read verses 9–10. According to these verses, what was Abinadi’s response?

  • Read verse 11. How did Abinadi’s boldness affect Noah?

  • Read verse 12. What kind of influence did Noah’s peers have on him?

  • What kind of influence do your friends have on you?

Encourage students to follow Abinadi’s example and boldly stand for the truth, in spite of the trials they may face. Share the following statements by President Gordon B. Hinckley:

Be strong—in standing for the right. We live in an age of compromise. … In situations with which we are daily confronted, we know what is right. … We must cultivate the strength to follow our convictions” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1992, 73; or Ensign, Nov. 1992, 52).

“None of us can slip down without taking the whole Church down somewhat. None of us can do better without lifting the whole Church somewhat. … We can do a little better. I pray that we will work at it just a little harder, with a little more devotion, a little more love, a little more prayer, a little more enthusiasm. This is the Savior’s work” (Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley [1997], 137).

Mosiah 17:11–20. Some, like the Savior, are called upon to seal their testimony with their blood. (5–10 minutes)

Invite a spiritually mature student to bear testimony of Jesus Christ. Ask the student:

  • What would it take for you to renounce your testimony?

  • Do you think you would renounce it for money? Even if it were a lot of money?

  • Would you renounce it for ease and comfort? for fame? for power?

  • Do you think you would renounce it if you were threatened with death?

(Note: If you think your students would be uncomfortable answering these questions, you might substitute the example of Church leaders or members who have shown great faith.)

Ask the class how they feel about people who believe in something so strongly that they hold to it no matter what. Ask: How does that compare to someone whose belief has limits?

Invite students to take turns reading aloud the following passages of scripture: Matthew 14:1–10; Acts 7:51–60; Mosiah 17:11–20. Discuss with students the similarities in these stories. Ask:

  • What did John the Baptist, Stephen, and Abinadi do that angered the people?

  • Read Doctrine and Covenants 135:3. According to this verse, what did Joseph Smith and “most of the Lord’s anointed in ancient times” do?

  • Why are so many called upon to seal their testimony with their blood? (see Hebrews 9:16).

  • What is necessary for a person to have that kind of testimony today?

Share the following account with students:

“The crack of six rifles echoed over the little town of San Marcos, not far from Mexico City. Jesusita Monroy knew that her son, Rafael, and his companion, Vicente Morales, were dead.

“Putting a shawl over her head, she hurried out to find their bodies, heedless of a downpour of rain which washed over the ground as if to erase the stain of martyrs’ blood from this Sabbath Day, July 17, 1915. …

“When revolutionary upheavals in Mexico forced the abandonment of the missionary effort there in 1913, Rafael Monroy, a storekeeper in his 30s, was left in charge of the San Marcos Branch of the Mexican Mission. He had been a member of the Church for only three months.

“Rafael held weekly meetings with the little group of seven members. He taught the Gospel to his neighbors, and the branch grew. By May, 1915, 50 people had been baptized, 75 were attending the meetings.

“At this time, two rival armies, fighting for control of the country descended on San Marcos. For a time, Carranza held the town. Then Zapata with his fanatic devotees of the Virgin of Guadalupe gained possession.

“A neighbor of the Monroys, fiercely opposed to their religious activities, went to the Zapata headquarters and denounced Rafael as a Carranzista and as a Mormon.

“Soldiers surrounded the Monroy house. Rafael was arrested together with Vicente, a member of the Church who happened to be visiting there. ‘Give up your arms,’ the soldiers demanded.

“Drawing from his pocket a Bible and a Book of Mormon, Rafael answered, ‘Senores, there are the only arms I ever carry. They are the arms of truth against error.’

“The two men were tortured, threatened and told to renounce their religion. ‘My religion is dearer to me than my life and I cannot forsake it,’ Rafael declared.

“He spent the afternoon in jail reading and explaining the scriptures to his fellow prisoners and to the guards. At 7 p.m. his mother brought some food. Rafael blessed it, but did not eat. ‘I am fasting today,’ he said.

“Moments later he and Vicente were marched to a large tree on the outskirts of San Marcos. They were offered their freedom if they would forsake their religion and join the Zapatistas. They refused.

“Rafael was allowed to pray. He knelt, and asked protection for his family, for the little branch. Finally, he prayed for his executioners, ‘Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.’

“Rising and folding his arms, he announced, ‘Senores, I am at your service.’

“‘Never have I seen men die more courageously,’ the soldier said” (“Two Members Died Courageously for the Truth,” Church News, 12 Sept. 1959, 19).

Ask students to consider the following questions:

  • How strong is your testimony?

  • Would you be willing to die for it? More importantly, are you willing to live for it?

  • How should our everyday actions be different because of the strength of our testimonies?

Mosiah 11–17. The scriptures contain many types and shadows of Jesus Christ. (20–25 minutes)

Review with students the material on types and shadows from the teaching suggestion for Mosiah 7:1–8, 16 (p. 108). Note: If you did not use that teaching suggestion, you may want to use it now, substituting the accompanying chart for the one in that teaching suggestion.

Have students read the verses from the accompanying chart and look for similarities between the lives of Abinadi and Jesus Christ. If desired, give students a copy of the chart with the “Similarities” column blank and have them fill in the missing information.

Abinadi

Jesus Christ

Similarities

Mosiah 11:20–25; 12:9

Matthew 4:17; Luke 4:28

Both called the people to repentance. In both cases, the people became angry at their preaching.

Mosiah 11:26

Luke 4:29–30

The people they taught tried to kill them, but they were delivered out of their hands.

Mosiah 12:9

John 18:12; Luke 23:7

Both were bound and taken to the king.

Mosiah 12:17–18

Matthew 26:57

Abinadi was judged by a council of priests. Jesus was judged by a council of chief priests, scribes, and elders.

Mosiah 12:19

Mark 14:55–59; Luke 20:19–20

The priests tried to catch them in their words.

Mosiah 12:26

Matthew 23:13–26

Both rebuked the religious leaders.

Mosiah 13:1

John 10:20

King Noah said Abinadi was crazy. Many of the people said Jesus was crazy.

Mosiah 14; 17:1

Luke 4:16–21, 28–30

Abinadi quoted from Isaiah’s prophecies of the Savior, and then Noah had him killed. Jesus quoted from Isaiah’s prophecies of the Savior, and then the people of Nazareth tried to kill Him.

Mosiah 17:5–6

Acts 10:40; 1 Peter 3:18–19

Abinadi spent three days in prison. Jesus spent three days in the tomb, during which He preached to the spirits in prison.

Mosiah 17:7–8

Matthew 26:63–66

Both taught that Christ was God.

Mosiah 17:9

John 18:1–8

Both allowed themselves to be arrested.

Mosiah 17:9–10

John 10:17–18

Both willingly suffered death.

Mosiah 17:10

Matthew 27:22–24

Both were innocent of wrongdoing.

Mosiah 17:11

Matthew 27:15–18

In both cases the political leader was willing to release them.

Mosiah 17:12

Luke 23:2

Both were accused of treason.

Mosiah 17:13

John 19:1

Both were scourged.

Mosiah 17:19

Luke 23:46

Both died while praying for the reception of their soul.

Mosiah 17:20

John 19:30; see also Hebrews 9:15–16

Both sealed their testimony with their blood.

Encourage students to look for types of the Savior in the scriptures and the world around them.