Two Men Called John Lesson 6: Sections 7, 13

Doctrine and Covenants Instructor’s Guide: Religion 324-325, (1981), 11–12


Theme

Revelations involving John the Revelator and John the Baptist help us understand the Lord’s use of ministering servants.

Theme Analysis

  • A.

    The Lord revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith some important truths about the mission of John the Revelator.

    1. 1.

      John had been translated that he might minister for a longer period of time among the inhabitants of the earth.

    2. 2.

      With Peter and James, John held the keys of the kingdom.

  • B.

    John the Baptist returned to the earth as a resurrected being and conferred the priesthood of Aaron upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery.

    1. 1.

      He explained that he acted under the direction of Peter, James, and John, who held the keys of the Meichizedek Priesthood.

    2. 2.

      He instructed them that the Aaronic Priesthood held the keys of the ministering of angels, the gospel of repentance, and baptism by immersion for the remission of sins.

  • C.

    Today we enjoy great blessings because of the restoration of the priesthood and keys held by John the Revelator and John the Baptist.

Study Sources

Student Manual

Sections 7, 13

Use material from Historical Background and Notes and Commentary to teach each revelation in its historical context.

Standard Works

Basic Library

  • Teachings, pp. 273, 319. John the Baptist held the keys of the Aaronic Priesthood.

  • Teachings, pp. 335-36. What is the spirit and power of Eiias under which John the Baptist functioned?

  • Teachings, pp. 275-76. Why was John the Baptist such a great prophet?

  • DS, 3:88-94. An explanation of why John the Baptist was chosen to restore the Aaronic Priesthood. Commentary on the restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood.

  • Gos. Doc, pp. 435-37. The purpose of the ministering of angels and examples of ministrations by angels.

  • DS, 1:195-96. The appearance of John the Baptist to Joseph and Oliver attests to the truthfulness of the Restoration.

  • Jesus the Christ, p. 275. The greatness of John the Baptist.

  • Teachings, pp. 289-90. Of what events did John the Revelator specifically prophesy?

  • DS, 2:300-301. What is the status of translated beings?

  • DS, 3:253. John the Beloved was sent to minister to the ten tribes.

  • Teachings, pp. 170-71, 191. The doctrine of the translation of bodies.

Additional Sources

  • Robert J. Matthews, Burning Light, pp. 110. A list of latter-day aids to understanding John the Baptist.

  • “The Forerunners,” Church News, 20 Dec. 1969, p. 16. A comparison of the missions of Joseph Smith and John the Baptist as forerunners to Christ (see also Matthews, Burning Light, pp. 111-12).

Some Suggestions for Presentation

(Ideas Other Teachers Have Used)

“Ask and Ye Shall Receive” (Historical Background, Scripture Analysis)

The backgrounds to both Doctrine and Covenants 7 and 13 could be reviewed and the question asked: “What is one lesson we can learn about receiving revelation from these backgrounds?” Note that both came as a direct result of questions that Joseph and Oliver had asked—a literal fulfillment of Doctrine and Covenants 4:7.

John the Beloved (Scripture Analysis, Discussion)

  1. 1.

    The teacher may wish to review some of the significant events in the mortal life and ministry of John the Beloved. A short review of his ministry is found in the Bible dictionary under “John.” Transparency 4, “The Ministry of John the Beloved,” could be used to aid this review.

  2. 2.

    Doctrine and Covenants 7 adds some significant insights into what Jesus said about John as recorded in John 21:20-23. This revelation could be reviewed and the points under A of Theme Analysis discussed.

  3. 3.

    How significant is the ministry of John the Beloved to Latter-day Saints? The following are examples of what might be discussed?

    1. a.

      He was commissioned to record events about the last days that no other prophet was permitted to write (see 1 Nephi 14:18-27).

    2. b.

      He was sent among the ten tribes to assist them in their preparation to return to Zion (see Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 3:253; History of the Church, 1:176).

    3. c.

      He assisted in the restoration of the Melchizedek Priesthood, which allows us to receive the blessings of that priesthood.

The Return of John the Baptist (Review, Quiz)

A review of John’s mortal ministry might be conducted (see Bible dictionary, s.v. “John the Baptist”).

A true or false quiz about the return of John the Baptist could be used to help motivate students to discuss the importance of Doctrine and Covenants 13. The following are only suggested questions, and you may wish to change them or add to them:

  1. 1.

    John the Baptist appeared to Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in consequence of their study in the New Testament concerning baptism. (False. The inquiry came as a result of translating the Book of Mormon. See JS-H 1:67-68.)

  2. 2.

    The inquiry of Joseph and Oliver regarding the true order of baptism resulted in the visitation of John the Baptist. (True. See JS-H 1:67-68.)

  3. 3.

    John the Baptist said that he was acting under the direct supervision of Jesus. (False. He said he came at the direction of Peter, James, and John. See JS-H 1:72.)

  4. 4.

    John the Baptist performed the ordinance of baptism for Joseph and Oliver. (False. He gave them the authority and they baptized each other. See JS-H 1:70-71.)

  5. 5.

    At the time of his earthly ministry prior to the ministry of Christ, John the Baptist was the only legal administrator in the affairs of the kingdom. (True. See Smith, Teachings, p. 276.)

The Significance of the Restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood (Scripture Analysis, Chalkboard Illustration)

  1. 1.

    Oliver Cowdery’s description of the return of John the Baptist offers some significant insights that could be discussed. (See Historical Background for D&C 13 in the student manual.)

  2. 2.

    The restoration of the Aaronic Priesthood provided one of the keys to unlock the door to salvation. It provided the keys of the gospel of repentance and of baptism. Discuss the significance of these keys to our progression.

  3. 3.

    John also delivered the keys of the ministering of angels. Wilford Woodruff made a statement which is an example of. this (see Notes and Commentary on D&C 13:1). President Harold B. Lee also gave insight concerning the ministrations of those on the other side of the veil: “When we begin to understand that, beyond sight, as Brigham Young said, is the spirit world right here round about us. If our spiritual eyes could be open, we could see others visiting with us, directing us. And if we will learn not to be so sophisticated that we rule out that possibility of impressions from those who are beyond sight, then we too may have a dream that may direct us as a revelation.” (Harold B. Lee, Divine Revelation, Brigham Young University Speeches of the Year [Provo, 15 Oct. 1952 . pp. 10-11; see also A. Theodore Tuttle, Ensign, May 1980, p. 40, for statements about ministrations from the Lord’s agents beyond the veil.)