To strengthen the children’s faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Obtain some small clean stones, or cut circles out of heavy paper to represent stones. Print “Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ” on the bottom of the stones or papers by putting one letter on each stone, as shown below.
Arrange the stones or papers letter side down on a table or the floor before class.
A Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants for each child, if possible.
A paper and pencil (or crayon) for each child.
An interesting object (if possible, something relating to the lesson), with a piece of cloth to hide it.
Picture 3-55, The Brother of Jared Sees the Finger of the Lord (62478; Gospel Art Picture Kit 318).
Make the necessary preparations for any enrichment activities that you will be using.
Suggested Lesson Development
Invite a child to give the opening prayer.
Follow up with the children if you encouraged them to do something during the week.
We Can Have Faith in Jesus Christ
In your own words, tell the following story:
A little girl took her father’s lunch to him as he worked deep in a well. Although she could not see her father down in the darkness of the well, when she called to him he answered, so she knew he was there. The father told her to drop the lunch bucket into the hole, and he would catch it. He did so, and in a moment called up to her that he had too much lunch for just one person, and invited her to join him. “Jump,” he said, “and I will catch you. You cannot see me, but I can see you, and I will not let you fall.” She jumped into the dark well and landed safely in her father’s strong arms. Together they had a fun time sharing the lunch.
Explain to the children that the little girl trusted her father to catch her, even though she could not see him. This trust is like faith. Faith is believing in something you cannot see, but you have great hope that it is true (see Ether 12:6).
Show the children the object covered by a piece of cloth.
Do you believe there is something under here? Why?
Let the children guess what they think the object might be. Then uncover the object. Point out that even though they could not see the object, they believed it was there.
Explain that even though we have not seen Jesus Christ, we believe he is there. We see evidence of his existence everywhere as we look at the world that he created, as we see the stars in the heavens, and especially as we read the scriptures. We also have prophets who have told us that they have seen him. Tell the children that today they will learn of someone from the Book of Mormon who had such great faith that he actually saw Jesus Christ.
The Brother of Jared and the Jaredites Had Faith
Scripture story and discussion
Remind the children that they have been learning about the Nephites and the Lamanites in the Book of Mormon. Explain to them that another group of people came to the same continent. They came much earlier than Lehi’s family. They were called Jaredites. Their leader was a man named Jared. Jared had a brother who had great faith. Jesus Christ heard the prayers of Jared’s brother and blessed the people.
Explain that Jesus Christ told the Jaredites to gather together all their families and their possessions, including their flocks of animals and seeds of every kind. He told them that after they had gathered everything together, he would lead them to a choice land.
The Jaredites were faithful and obeyed Jesus. He talked with the brother of Jared from a cloud and led the Jaredites into the wilderness. They crossed many waters and traveled to the great sea.
Remind the children that the brother of Jared was blessed because he had great faith. He showed his faith by asking Heavenly Father to help his people and then by doing what Heavenly Father commanded.
Continue with the story of the brother of Jared:
Jesus Christ instructed the brother of Jared to build eight barges, like boats or ships, to carry the Jaredites across the ocean to the promised land. The Jaredites followed his directions and built the barges.
The Savior told the brother of Jared that the barges would be under the water some of the time, so they were to be built so that water could not leak in.
Help the children who can read to find Ether 2:17 in their copies of the Book of Mormon. Read verse 17 together, which describes the Jaredite barges.
Invite the children to place their cupped hands together like a ship, and turn them one way, then another, to show how the barges might roll over onto either side like one dish placed tightly on top of another.
Distribute pencils or crayons and paper to each child. Ask the children to draw what they think the barges looked like from the description in the scripture you just read. Read it again as needed while the children are drawing.
Let the children show the class their pictures; then collect the drawings and the copies of the Book of Mormon. Tell them that you will return their drawings at the end of Primary. Explain that we do not really know exactly what the barges looked like.
The Brother of Jared Saw Jesus Christ
Explain that because of the tightness of the barges, there was not any light inside, nor could fresh air get to the people and animals inside the barge. The people wondered how they would see or breathe while they were crossing the ocean. Jesus Christ instructed them to cut a hole in the top and bottom of each barge. These holes could be plugged up. Then, when the barges were on top of the water, the Jaredites could open the top hole to let in fresh air. If water started coming in, they could plug up the hole again.
The brother of Jared knew they still needed light inside the ships. He prayed and asked what they could do for light.
Read Ether 2:23 aloud and explain what Jesus Christ said to the brother of Jared. Explain that Jesus did not give the brother of Jared an answer but asked instead what help he needed.
What are some solutions you might have thought of if you had been the brother of Jared?
Scripture story and objects
Explain that the brother of Jared went to a mountain and melted sixteen small, clear stones out of a rock.
Draw attention to the stones (or paper stones) that you have displayed. Explain that the stones he made were white and clear, like glass.
The brother of Jared carried the stones to the top of a mountain and prayed. In his prayer he said that he knew that if the Lord touched the stones, they would give off light. In this way they could have light inside their ships as they sailed across the sea. After he had finished his prayer, a wonderful thing happened.
Read Ether 3:6 to the class (stop after the first instance of the word finger).
What did Jesus Christ do to the stones? (He touched them with his finger.)
Picture and scripture story
Display picture 3-55, The Brother of Jared Sees the Finger of the Lord.
When the brother of Jared saw Jesus Christ’s finger touch the stones, he was so surprised that he fell to the ground. When the Lord asked him why he fell to the ground, the brother of Jared said that he didn’t know that the Lord had a finger like a man. Then Jesus asked the brother of Jared if he believed all the words that the Lord had spoken. When the brother of Jared said yes, the Lord told him that because of his great faith, the Lord could show himself to him. Then Jesus showed himself to the brother of Jared and told him that never had a man shown as much faith as he had.
Why did Jesus Christ show himself to the brother of Jared? (Because the brother of Jared had great faith.)
Explain that the brother of Jared knew that if Jesus touched the stones, they would give light inside the eight barges, and they did.
The Jaredites also had great faith in Jesus Christ. Soon the Jaredites boarded their ships. Because of their faith in him, they were guided safely to the promised land.
We Can Have Faith like the Brother of Jared
Explain that people today can have faith like the brother of Jared. Faith is believing and trusting in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. We show our faith by being obedient and prayerful. We have been promised that we can have our prayers answered if we ask in faith for what is right (see Mosiah 4:21).
Article of faith
Help the children say as much of the fourth article of faith as they can.
Read Doctrine and Covenants 29:6 to the class.
Explain that we need faith when we pray to our Heavenly Father. Heavenly Father has promised to answer our prayers if we ask him in faith. It is not enough for us to just say our prayers. We need to believe that he will answer our prayers in the way that is best for us.
Situations and discussion
Read the following imaginary situations to the class. Have the children tell you how the main character in each situation showed faith.
Bart had lost his CTR ring on the school playground. His best friend, Jim, told him that there was no chance that he would find it in all the gravel and sand. Bart knew he needed extra help. He wanted to find his ring. That night he prayed and asked Heavenly Father for help. When he finished his prayer, he had a good feeling inside and felt he would get help from Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost to find his ring. The next day he found the ring.
What did Bart do to show his faith in Jesus Christ?
How was Bart’s faith rewarded?
Sally was asked to give a talk in Primary the next Sunday. She had never done this before, and she was very nervous. During the week Sally worked hard preparing her talk. When Sunday came, she still felt nervous and wasn’t sure about giving her talk. Just before she left home, she knelt by her bed and asked Heavenly Father to help her be calm. She knew she had worked hard on the talk, and she felt Heavenly Father would help her.
What did Sally do to show faith?
How do you think her faith was rewarded?
Remind the children that they can have their prayers answered if they ask in faith. Sometimes our prayers are not answered in the way we would like them to be. If we have faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, we know that we will be given the answers that are best for us.
Play the following game using the stones or papers that you have had displayed during the lesson. Have the children take turns guessing letters of the alphabet. If a child guesses one of the letters on the stones, turn that stone over to reveal the letter. If a child chooses a letter that is in the game twice (like E), turn both stones over. Keep playing the game until the entire phrase “Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ” is revealed. Read the phrase with the class; then ask the following question:
What are some ways we can show our faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ?
Conclude the lesson by bearing your testimony that Heavenly Father will hear and answer our prayers when we ask in faith. You might share a personal experience about having a prayer answered. Encourage the children to strengthen their faith.
How did the brother of Jared strengthen his faith? (Possible responses include: he prayed for help; he listened to Jesus Christ; he believed and obeyed the commandments he was given.)
At the end of Primary, give the barge pictures back to the children so they can take them home.
Invite a child to give the closing prayer.
Choose from the following activities those that will work best for your children. You can use them in the lesson itself or as a review or summary. For additional guidance, see “Class Time” in “Helps for the Teacher.”
Give each child one of the stones used in the lesson as a reminder that they can have faith like the brother of Jared. You might want to have each child write the word faith on his stone.
Have the children repeat the first part of the fourth article of faith: “We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.”
Stand with the children to sing or say the words to
“Faith” with actions (Children’s Songbook, p. 96):Faith is knowing the sun will rise, (arms form a half-circle over head)lighting each new day. (arms slowly drop to shoulder level)Faith is knowing the Lord will hear (cup hands behind ears)my prayers each time I pray. (hands together as in prayer)Faith is like a little seed: (cup left hand and imitate planting a seed with right hand)If planted, it will grow. (right hand imitates a plant growing from the cupped left hand)Faith is a swelling within my heart. (place hands over heart)When I do right, (point right index finger upward)I know. (touch right index finger to head)
Show the children a seed. Ask the children what will happen when it is planted and cared for. You might help each child plant a seed in a paper cup filled with soil. Challenge the children to care for their plants for the next two weeks as the plants sprout.
What must we do for this seed to help it grow?
Explain that we have faith that seeds will grow when they are properly cared for. In the same way, we have faith that Heavenly Father will answer our prayers if we keep his commandments and pray in faith.