Lesson 3

Genesis 12-23

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 that 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 three of the four assignments:

1.   Genesis 12–13, 15–17, 22. The Abrahamic Covenant

Read the definition of the word covenant from the Bible Dictionary. Write a paragraph describing what you found.

As you read Genesis 12:1–3; 13:14–16; 15:4–7, 18; 17:1–10, 15–19; Abraham 1:18–19; 2:9–11, fill in the two sides of the chart below. Make sure you read all of the Joseph Smith Translation references in the footnotes for these verses and include them as part of the list.


Read “Abraham, Covenant of” in the Bible Dictionary and read the Points to Ponder section in the institute student manual (pp. 70–72). Also read Doctrine and Covenants 38:9; 132:29–33; 1 Nephi 15:14–18; 17:40; 19:15 and 3 Nephi 20:25–27; Genesis 22:17. Write a paragraph explaining how the Abrahamic covenant pertains to you and when it will be fulfilled. What are your responsibilities? What promises does the Lord make to you?

Read Genesis 16:1–3 and write a paragraph describing what Abraham was asked to do. Read Doctrine and Covenants 132:34, 65 and explain in writing how this revelation to the Prophet Joseph Smith helps clarify Genesis 16. Why is this doctrinally significant?

Find the name Abraham in the Bible Dictionary. Write the meanings of both the names Abram and Abraham. Also find the name Sarah in the Bible Dictionary. Write the meanings of both the names Sarai and Sarah. Briefly explain how each of the name changes are related to the Abrahamic covenant.

2.   Genesis 13–14, 19. A Contrast in Choices

Read Genesis 13:10–12; 14:1–12; 19:1 and write your answers to the following questions:

  • Why do you think Lot chose to live where he did?
  • What do you think it meant to pitch his tent “toward” Sodom?
  • How does 2 Nephi 28:7–9 pertain to Lot’s choice to pitch his tent “toward Sodom”?
  • At first Lot lived “in the cities of the plain” outside Sodom, but he “pitched his tent toward Sodom” (Genesis 13:12). Later he lived in the city of Sodom itself (see Genesis 14:12). In what ways do people today “pitch their tents toward Sodom”?
  • Read Genesis 19:2–11; Romans 1:24–27, 31 and the student manual commentaries for Genesis 19:4–11, “Why Did Lot Offer His Daughters to the Wicked Sodomites?” (p. 76), and for Genesis 19:13, “What Was the Wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah?” (p. 76). Explain in writing the sins of Sodom and Gomorrah. Write a list of words from the scriptures and the student manual describing how the Lord feels about homosexuality.

Contrast Lot’s choices with Abraham’s by reading Genesis 13:7–9, 18; 14:13–16, 21–23 and responding in writing to the following questions:

  • Where did Abraham choose to live?
  • What did he do when he heard that Lot had been captured?
  • What does Genesis 14:22–23 reveal about Abraham’s values and commitment to God?
  • The city of Sodom was known for having wealth, abundance of worldly pleasures, and great wickedness. What could Abraham have gained from the king of Sodom? How does Moroni 10:30 relate to Abraham’s actions?
  • What can you do to be more like Abraham, who did not even desire a “thread” of what the king of Sodom had to offer?

3.   Genesis 14:18–20; JST, Genesis 14:25–40. Who Was Melchizedek?

Read JST, Genesis 14:25–40; Alma 13:14–19; Doctrine and Covenants 84:14; 107:1–4 and the student manual commentary for Genesis 14:18, “Who Was Melchizedek?” (pp. 67–68). Write a paragraph or two describing what you found out about Melchizedek.

4.   Genesis 22. The Command to Sacrifice Isaac

Read Genesis 22:1–14. Also read the student manual introduction to Genesis 18–23 (p. 75) and the commentary for Genesis 22:1–19, “The Sacrifice of Isaac—A Similitude” (pp.
77–78). Then respond in writing to the following questions and tasks:

  • How is the account of Abraham and Isaac a similitude of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ? List as many similarities as you can.
  • Make a list of evidences you find in Genesis 22:1–14 that demonstrate Abraham’s obedience, faithfulness, and dedication to God.
  • Write a paragraph or two about what impresses you most about Abraham’s willingness to obey the Lord.

In Omni 1:26 what did the Savior command members of His Church to offer Him?