Lesson 15

Moses 7

“Lesson 15: Moses 7,” Old Testament Seminary Teacher Manual (2014)


Introduction

The prophet Enoch led the people of God and established the city of Zion upon the principles of righteousness. Enoch was blessed to see a vision of the earth’s history, from his own day to the Millennium, and learn in a very profound way of our Heavenly Father’s love for His children. He also foresaw the coming of the Savior, the eventual Restoration of the gospel, the gathering of Israel, and the return of the city of Zion upon the earth.

Suggestions for Teaching

Moses 7:1–21

Enoch establishes the city of Zion upon principles of righteousness

bowl of water

To prepare students to study Moses 7, display a bowl of water and explain that it represents the world we live in. Sprinkle ground black pepper all over the water to represent the wicked influences in the world.

Explain that, like us, Enoch lived in a world full of wickedness. Summarize Moses 7:1–12 by explaining that as Enoch preached the gospel, he testified that he had talked to the Lord face to face. The Lord showed Enoch a vision of the groups of people he was called to teach. The Lord commanded Enoch to call these people to repentance and to baptize them, which would allow them to become the people of God.

Direct students’ attention back to the bowl of water. Invite them to watch what happens as you add a drop or two of liquid soap to the center of the bowl. (The pepper will disperse to the edges of the bowl.)

Ask a student to read Moses 7:13–17 aloud. Invite the class to follow along and look for ways in which the faith of Enoch and his people was similar to the soap you added to the water.

  • How was the faith of Enoch and his people similar to the soap we added to the water? (Because of Enoch’s great faith and the righteousness of the people, they were separated from the wicked in miraculous ways.)

  • According to verses 16–17, how were Enoch and his people blessed compared to the world around them? (The Lord came and dwelt with His people, and they lived in peace while wars and bloodshed were all around.)

Invite a student to read Moses 7:18 aloud. Ask the class to look for what the Lord called His people and why He gave them that name. Ask students to report what they find.

  • What do you think it means that “there was no poor among them”? (The people cared for one another temporally and spiritually.)

  • According to verse 18, what do we need to do to be the Lord’s people? (After students respond, write the following principle on the board: The Lord will call His people Zion when they are of one heart and one mind, live righteously, and care for one another.)

To help students better understand this principle and relate it to themselves, copy the following questions on the board. Invite students to choose any of the questions and record their answers in their class notebooks or scripture study journals. Then ask students to share their answers with the class or with a partner.

  • What do you think it means to be “of one heart and one mind”? When have you felt that you were of one heart and one mind with other members of the Church?

  • In your experience, how does living righteously help members of the Church to feel unified?

  • When have you ministered to the needs of another member of the Church? What effect did that have on you?

  • How have members of the Church cared for you? What feelings do you have for them?

Summarize Moses 7:19–21 by explaining that Enoch built a city called the city of Zion. Enoch saw in a vision that the city would eventually be taken up to heaven because of the righteousness of his people. This means that Enoch and his people were translated—in other words, their bodies were changed so they would be free of physical pain and would not experience death until the time of their resurrection.

Moses 7:22–40

Enoch sees that Satan laughs and God weeps over the wicked

Ask students to think of a time in their lives when they felt like they were all alone or that nobody cared about them. Invite them to look for a principle as they continue to study Moses 7 that can help them when they have these feelings.

Invite a few students to take turns reading aloud from Moses 7:23–26. Ask the class to follow along and look for what Enoch saw in vision. Ask students to report what they find.

  • What did Enoch learn about Satan?

  • What do you think the “great chain in his hand” represents?

  • Why do you think Satan and his followers laughed and rejoiced?

Invite a student to read Moses 7:27–28 aloud. Ask the class to follow along, looking for what happened to many of the righteous who were on the earth after the city of Zion was translated. Ask students to report what they find.

  • What did the Lord do when He saw the wickedness of the people who remained on the earth?

  • What does this teach us about the Lord’s nature?

Invite several students to take turns reading aloud from Moses 7:29–31. Ask the class to follow along and look for how Enoch responded when he saw the Lord weep.

  • What did Enoch ask the Lord?

  • In verse 30, point out the phrase “and yet thou art there, and thy bosom is there.” What was Enoch saying about the Lord? (To help students answer this question, you may want to explain that in the scriptures, the word bosom is often used to refer to a person’s chest, which covers his heart, where deep emotions are felt. The phrase “and yet thou art there, and thy bosom is there” indicates that although God has created innumerable worlds, He feels deep love and compassion for each one of His children and is close to them.)

To illustrate what Enoch said about the Lord in verse 30, draw multiple dots on the board. Explain that these dots represent a few of the many worlds God has created. Point to one of the dots and explain that it represents the earth and those who live on it.

  • What do verses 28–31 teach us about God’s feelings for us as His children? (God has created worlds without number, yet He is aware of and cares about us. You may want to suggest that students mark the phrases in verse 30 that teach this truth.)

  • When have you had an experience that helped you know that God is aware of and cares for you?

Invite students to study Moses 7:32–40 with a partner, looking for what causes Heavenly Father to feel sorrow.

  • What causes Heavenly Father to feel sorrow? (Summarize student responses by writing the following truth on the board: Heavenly Father feels sorrow when we choose to commit sin.)

  • According to verses 37–38, why does Heavenly Father feel sorrow when we choose to commit sin?

  • How can this knowledge influence you to live righteously?

Moses 7:41–69

The Lord comforts Enoch by teaching him about the plan of salvation

Ask students if they have ever felt tired of being surrounded by evil influences and temptations.

Invite a student to read Moses 7:41–44 aloud. Ask the class to look for how Enoch felt when he looked upon the wickedness and misery of God’s children.

  • How did Enoch feel?

  • According to verse 44, what did the Lord tell Enoch?

Invite a student to read Moses 7:45–47 aloud. Ask the class to follow along and identify what the Lord showed Enoch to comfort him.

  • Why do you think seeing a vision of the Savior would cause Enoch’s soul to rejoice?

Summarize Moses 7:48–53 by explaining that Enoch wept again when he heard the earth mourn because of the wickedness of the people. Enoch prayed and asked God if he would have compassion on the earth and bless the children of Noah. The Lord promised Enoch that He would never again flood the earth. The Lord also promised that He would “call upon the children of Noah,” which means that He would invite them to accept the gospel. The Lord also taught Enoch that those who build their lives upon the Savior would never fall. (See also Helaman 5:12.)

Invite a student to read Moses 7:54 aloud, and ask the class to look for the question Enoch asked. Ask students to report what they find. Explain that when Enoch asked the Lord when the earth would “rest,” he was referring to a time when wickedness will be taken from the earth and the righteous will dwell in peace and safety.

Summarize Moses 7:55–59 by explaining that Enoch saw that the Savior would be crucified. He wept and asked again when the earth would rest. After seeing Jesus ascend into heaven he asked whether the Lord would return to the earth.

Invite a student to read Moses 7:60–61 aloud, and ask the class to look for the answer the Lord gave to Enoch. Ask students to report what they find.

  • What did the Lord say the world would be like when He comes again?

  • What did the Lord promise He would do for His people in the last days? (He would preserve them.)

Explain that the word preserve refers to the Lord’s ability to save His people both physically and spiritually from the wickedness of the world. Invite a student to read Moses 7:62 aloud. Ask the class to look for what the Lord will do to preserve His people spiritually in the latter days. Ask students to report what they find.

  • How is this similar to what the Lord did for His people during Enoch’s day?

Explain that the phrase “righteousness will I send down out of heaven” refers to such things as the appearance of God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ, the appearance of angels, revelation, and the bestowal of priesthood keys and power. The phrase “truth will I send forth out of the earth” refers to the coming forth of the Book of Mormon in the latter days as part of the Restoration. This “righteousness” from heaven and “truth” from the earth would bear witness of Christ, His Resurrection, and the Resurrection of all mankind.

  • According to Moses 7:62, how will the Book of Mormon be used in the latter days? (To gather out God’s elect throughout the earth.)

Point out that even though the city of Zion will be built in the last days, not everyone will need to be in the city to be preserved. Summarize Moses 7:63–66 by explaining that it describes one of the events associated with Jesus Christ’s Second Coming: Enoch and his city will return to the earth and will meet the city of Zion, or New Jerusalem, which will be built in the last days. These verses also tell us that when the Savior comes again, all wickedness will be removed from the earth and the earth will rest.

Invite a student to read Moses 7:67–69 aloud. Ask the class to look for the effect the Lord’s vision had on Enoch and what happened to the city of Zion. Ask students to report their findings.

Conclude by testifying of the truths you have discussed in this lesson.

scripture mastery iconScripture Mastery—Moses 7:18

Consider inviting students to read Moses 7:18 aloud as a class. Based on the teachings in this verse, ask students to suggest what they might do to become more united as a seminary class. Together, set a goal to implement those suggestions. You could then begin the next several lessons by reciting the scripture at the beginning of class and briefly discussing your progress toward the goal.

Commentary and Background Information

Moses 7:21. Being translated

Moses 7:21 tells of the people of Enoch who were translated, or taken up into heaven without tasting death. President Joseph Fielding Smith explained:

“Translated beings are still mortal and will have to pass through the experience of death, or the separation of the spirit and the body, although this will be instantaneous, for the people of the City of Enoch, Elijah, and others who received this great blessing in ancient times, before the coming of our Lord, could not have received the resurrection, or the change from mortality to immortality, because our Lord had not [yet] paid the debt which frees us from mortality and grants to us the resurrection” (Answers to Gospel Questions, comp. Joseph Fielding Smith Jr., 5 vols. [1957], 1:165).

Moses 7:27. Many were caught up into heaven

The righteous people described in Moses 7:27 were translated and “caught up” to join those in the city of Zion. Elder Bruce R. McConkie of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles wrote:

“After those in the City of Holiness were translated and taken up into heaven without tasting death, so that Zion as a people and a congregation had fled from the battle-scarred surface of the earth, the Lord sought others among men who would serve him. From the days of Enoch to the flood, new converts and true believers, except those needed to carry out the Lord’s purposes among mortals, were translated” (The Millennial Messiah: The Second Coming of the Son of Man [1982], 284).

Moses 7:30. “Yet thou art there”

Elder Neal A. Maxwell of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles explained that Heavenly Father cares for each of us individually:

“Enoch, to whom the Lord revealed so much, praised God amid His vast creations, exclaiming reassuringly, ‘Yet thou art there’ (Moses 7:30; see also Jeremiah 10:12).

“This same special assurance can see each of us through all the seasons and circumstances of our lives. A universal God is actually involved with our small, individual universes of experience! In the midst of His vast dominions, yet He numbers us, knows us, and loves us perfectly (see Moses 1:35; John 10:14)” (“Yet Thou Art There,” Ensign, Nov. 1987, 30).

Moses 7:38–39. “I will shut them up; a prison have I prepared for them”

Elder Bruce R. McConkie of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles wrote:

“Men in Noah’s day rebelled, rejected the Lord and his gospel, and were buried in a watery grave. Their spirits then found themselves in that prison prepared for those who walk in darkness when light is before them” (The Promised Messiah: The First Coming of Christ [1978], 330).

President Joseph Fielding Smith wrote of these people:

“From the time of their death in the flood until the time of the crucifixion of the Savior, they were shut up in the prison house in torment, suffering the penalty of their transgressions, because they refused to hear a prophet of the Lord—and so it will be with every man who rejects the gospel, whether he lived anciently or whether he lives now; it makes no difference” (Doctrines of Salvation, comp. Bruce R. McConkie, 3 vols. [1954–56], 2:229).

Moses 7:62. “Righteousness will I send down out of heaven; and truth will I send forth out of the earth”

President Ezra Taft Benson explained that the Lord promised that “righteousness would come from heaven and truth out of the earth. We have seen the marvelous fulfillment of that prophecy in our generation. The Book of Mormon has come forth out of the earth, filled with truth, serving as the very ‘keystone of our religion’ (see Introduction to the Book of Mormon). God has also sent down righteousness from heaven. The Father Himself appeared with His Son to the Prophet Joseph Smith. The angel Moroni, John the Baptist, Peter, James, and numerous other angels were directed by heaven to restore the necessary powers to the kingdom. Further, the Prophet Joseph Smith received revelation after revelation from the heavens during those first critical years of the Church’s growth. These revelations have been preserved for us in the Doctrine and Covenants” (“The Gift of Modern Revelation,” Ensign, Nov. 1986, 79–80).