Lesson 14

Articles of Faith

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 assignments 3 and 4 and either assignment 1 or 2:

1.   Wentworth Letter

Read the institute student manual commentaries “What Are the Articles of Faith?” (page 66) and the two paragraphs of “The Wentworth Letter” beginning “Persecution has not stopped the progress of truth” (page 68). (You may want to read the entire Wentworth Letter; it is very informative.) Then answer the following questions:

  • What effect did persecution have on the progress of the Church?
  • What did the Prophet Joseph Smith prophecy concerning the standard of truth and the eventual destiny of the Church?
  • When will the spreading of the gospel cease?
  • In what ways have you spread the gospel?
  • What can you do in the future to help spread the gospel?

2.   Overview of the Articles of Faith

Read the student manual commentary “What Is the Significance of the Articles of Faith?” (page 69), and list at least three ways the Articles of Faith can help members of the Church. Select one of the helpful ways you listed, and write about how you have been blessed by having the Articles of Faith in your life. Also explain in writing how you might use them in the future.

3.   Articles of Faith 1–4. God and His Plan of Salvation

Read the quotations in the student manual commentaries “Articles of Faith 1:1: Three Separate and Distinct Beings”; “Articles of Faith 1:1: ‘God, the Eternal Father’”; “Articles of Faith 1:1: ‘His Son, Jesus Christ’”; and “Articles of Faith 1:1: The Holy Ghost” (pages 69–70). Then study John 17:3 and write short answers for the following:

  • Describe why you think this declaration of belief is first in the Articles of Faith.
  • According to Elder Dallin H. Oaks, how does this description of the Godhead differ from other religious creeds concerning the Trinity?
  • What difference has it made for you to have a correct understanding of the nature of the Godhead?

Read Articles of Faith 1:2; Moses 5:10–11; 6:53–54; 2 Nephi 2:19–21; Mosiah 2:32–33, 36–39; 3:19; Doctrine and Covenants 74:7; and the student manual commentary “Articles of Faith 1:2: Adam and Eve’s Transgression” (pages 70–71). Then answer the following questions in writing:

  • How does the Fall expand our agency and bring about joy?
  • What consequences of the Fall of Adam did we inherit?
  • How do these scriptures teach that we are accountable for our own sins?
  • How do these scriptures teach that we will not be punished for Adam’s transgression?

Read Articles of Faith 1:3 and the student manual commentary “Articles of Faith 1:3: The Laws and Ordinances of the Gospel” (page 71), as well as 2 Nephi 9:7–10, 21–23. Write two paragraphs explaining why you could not be saved without both (1) the Atonement of Jesus Christ and (2) obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel. What difference does it make in your life to be obedient and to know that you cannot be exalted in the celestial kingdom without these two elements?

After reviewing the fourth article of faith, read the following references regarding the first principles and ordinances of the gospel: Acts 2:36–38; Doctrine and Covenants 20:37; 3 Nephi 11:31–40. Write a paragraph explaining why you think the first principles and ordinances appear in the order they do in the fourth article of faith.

4.   Articles of Faith 5–13. The Restored Church of Jesus Christ

Read Articles of Faith 1:5; Acts 13:2–3; Hebrews 5:4; Doctrine and Covenants 42:11; and the student manual commentaries “Articles of Faith 1:5: ‘Called of God, by Prophecy’”; “Articles of Faith 1:5: Called of God by the Laying on of Hands”; “Articles of Faith 1:5: ‘By Those Who Are in Authority’” (pages 72–73). Write a paragraph explaining how the  doctrines and principles taught in the fifth article of faith help safeguard you.

Read the student manual commentary “Articles of Faith 1:6: ‘The Same Organization That Existed in the Primitive Church’” (page 73) and Ephesians 4:11–14. Then write answers to the following:

  • In what ways do the seventh and ninth articles of faith help you understand why there are other offices and positions in the Church today that are not mentioned in the Bible? (such as youth and Primary auxiliary leaders and high councilors).
  • Write a short essay about how your life has been blessed by the way the Church is organized and by Church members using gifts of the Spirit.

Reflect upon the eighth article of faith, and read the student manual commentaries “Articles of Faith 1:8: Scripture”; “Articles of Faith 1:8: The Bible Is ‘the Word of God As Far As It Is Translated Correctly’”; and “Articles of Faith 1:8: The Book of Mormon” (page 76). Briefly explain in writing why we need both the Bible and the Book of Mormon.

Read the tenth article of faith and the student manual commentary “Articles of Faith 1:10: The Gathering of Israel” (page 77). Briefly explain in writing what you have done and may do to help in the gathering of Israel and the other events mentioned in the tenth article of faith.

Read Articles of Faith 1:11–12; Doctrine and Covenants 134:5–6; and the student manual commentaries “Articles of Faith 1:11: ‘The Privilege of Worshiping Almighty God’”; “Articles of Faith 1:12: Being Subject to Governmental Authority”; and “Articles of Faith 1:12: ‘Obeying, Honoring, and Sustaining the Law’” (pages 78–79). Then write a list of ways you can be a good citizen in the country where you live.

Compare the thirteenth article of faith to Philippians 4:8. Then read the student manual commentary “Articles of Faith 1:13: Paul’s Admonition to Seek after Things That Are Virtuous, Lovely, of Good Report, or Praiseworthy” (page 81). Using Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin’s definition of the word seek as a guide, write one or two paragraphs explaining how the Church and the gospel help you follow the admonition of Paul to seek after things that are “praiseworthy.”