Lesson 1

Acts 1–8; 10–12

The following assignments include various learning activities, such as questions, lists, essays, charts, comparisons, contrasts, and surveys. To receive credit for this lesson, you must complete the number of assignments indicated below and submit them to your institute instructor or administrator. You may submit your work either electronically or on paper, handwritten or typed.

Each lesson should take approximately 60–90 minutes to complete, the same amount of time you would typically spend in a weekly institute class. Since reading the scripture block listed in the lesson heading is expected of all institute students prior to class, the estimated time for each assignment does not include the time you need to spend reading the scripture block.

Complete any four of the following assignments:

1.  Acts 1–12. An Introduction and Overview

Read the chapter summaries for Acts 1–8;10–12 and the Bible Dictionary entry “Acts of the Apostles” (pp. 603–4). Make a list of several themes that the book of Acts emphasizes.

From the chapter summaries for Acts 2–5;8–10; 12 make a list of what Peter was doing in each chapter.

2.  Acts 1. Special Witnesses of the Resurrected Savior

Read Acts 1:1–11 and the Topical Guide entry for “Jesus Christ, Appearances, Postmortal” (pp. 241–42). List three additional scripture accounts of individuals or groups who became witnesses of the resurrected Lord Jesus Christ. Write the similarities between the scripture accounts you have selected.

Read Acts 1:1 and compare it to Luke
. In writing, list who was the author of the Acts of the Apostles and why he wrote it.

Why do you think the doctrine of the Resurrection is so central to the preaching of these witnesses of Christ? (see 1 Corinthians 15:13–14).

Read 3 Nephi 27:13–14. Then describe in writing the relationship between Christ’s Atonement, His death and resurrection, and His gospel.

What did the Savior promise His followers just prior to His Ascension?

In what ways can you be a modern-day witness of Jesus Christ?

From Acts 1:21–26 briefly describe in writing how a new Apostle was selected and what his qualifications needed to be. What additional information does the Bible Dictionary entry for “Apostle” (p. 612) include for the qualifications of an Apostle?

3.  Acts 2. The Day of Pentecost

Read Acts 2 and the institute student manual commentary for Acts 2:1, “What Was the Day of Pentecost?” (pp. 243–44). Then respond in writing to the following items:

  • Briefly describe the meaning of the day of Pentecost.
  • List two or three of Peter’s teachings on this day.
  • In what ways did Peter fulfill his role as a special witness of Jesus Christ?
  • What gifts of the Spirit were manifest on the day of Pentecost?
  • How did the people respond to what occurred on this day?

4.  Acts 3–5. Peter and John Preached the Gospel

Review the account in Acts 3:1–11 of the man lame from birth, and write answers to the following questions:

  • How did the man “lame from his mother’s womb” get to the temple?
  • How did the healing of the lame man help prepare the people for the preaching of Peter and John?
  • How was Peter’s response to this stricken man at the gate of the temple similar to the way the Lord sometimes answers our prayers?
  • How does what Peter told the man in verse 6 apply to you?

Read Acts 3:12–18; 4:1–21, 33; 5:27–32, 40–42 and respond in writing to the following items:

  • Summarize the acts of Peter and John.
  • How did Peter and John respond to the threatenings of the Jewish leaders?
  • In what ways had Peter changed since the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ just a few months earlier?

Read Acts 3:19–21 and the student manual commentary for Acts 3:19, “What Is Meant by the ‘Times of Refreshing’?”; Acts 3:21, “What Is Meant by the ‘Times of Restitution’?” (p. 245). Write a paragraph that explains how these verses support the idea of the Restoration of the gospel in the latter days.

Read Acts 5:34–42. Write a paragraph describing the actions of the Jewish council as well as the actions of Gamaliel. How do Gamaliel’s words relate to Doctrine and Covenants 121:33?

5.  Acts 7. The Martyrdom of Stephen

Review Acts 6:6–8 and Acts 7:51–60. Then respond to the following items:

  • Write a summary of Stephen’s last words and what impressed you about them.
  • What do we learn about the Godhead from these verses?

Compare Stephen’s death to Abinadi’s in Mosiah 17:7–20. List how they were similar. What impact do their final testimonies have upon you?

6.  Acts 10. The Vision of Peter

Read Acts 10:1–17; 11:1–18. Write answers to the following questions:

  • Who appeared to Cornelius and what was his message?
  • What was Peter’s reaction to the Lord’s command during his vision upon the housetop?
  • Why did Peter react the way he did?
  • Read Joseph Smith—History 1:30, 44, 46 and discuss why you think the Lord repeated the vision three times for Peter.

Read Acts 10:18–36, 44 and answer the following questions:

  • When Peter clearly understood the meaning of the vision, what did he declare?
  • What does it mean that God is “no respecter of persons”?
  • How did the Holy Ghost assist the Jewish Saints in understanding that the blessings of the gospel were to be available to all people at that time?

7.  Acts 12. Herod and Peter

Read Acts 12. Compare and contrast the two main characters. Complete the following chart: