Lesson 35: The Mission of Jesus Christ

Primary 7: New Testament, (1997), 120–122


Purpose

To help the children understand the mission of Jesus Christ.

Note to the teacher: This lesson is an overview of Jesus’ premortal, mortal, and postmortal life. It is intended to help the children understand Jesus’ mission more completely. Because the lesson is an overview, the questions are broad. As you discuss them, it would be best to focus on the highlights of each part of the Savior’s ministry rather than try to get too specific or detailed.

Preparation

  1. 1.

    Prayerfully study Moses 1:33, 39; 4:2; Luke 24:27; John 3:16; 15:9–13; 1 Corinthians 10:4; Mosiah 13:33; 3 Nephi 11:7–10; Ether 3:14; Doctrine and Covenants 138:30; and Joseph Smith—History 1:17. Then study the lesson and decide how you want to teach the children the scripture account. (See “Preparing Your Lessons,” p. vi, and “Teaching from the Scriptures,” p. vii.)

  2. 2.

    Additional reading: Gospel Principles, chapters 3, 11, and 43.

  3. 3.

    Select the discussion questions and enrichment activities that will involve the children and best help them achieve the purpose of the lesson.

  4. 4.

    Materials needed:

    1. a.

      A Bible or a New Testament for each child.

    2. b.

      Wordstrips (see the following chart).

    3. c.

      Picture 7-1, Jesus the Christ (Gospel Art Picture Kit 240; 62572).

Note: During the lesson you could complete a chart similar to the following one (or you could write the material on the chalkboard). Display “The Mission of Jesus Christ” and then the three main headings horizontally under that title. Have a child put up a wordstrip under the appropriate heading as you discuss that aspect of Jesus’ mission.

The Mission of Jesus Christ

    Christ’s Premortal Life

  • Volunteered to be our Savior

  • Created the earth

  • Was Jehovah of the Old Testament

  • Gave revelation to the prophets

    Christ’s Mortal Life

  • Taught the gospel

  • Healed the sick

  • Organized his church

  • Atoned for our sins

  • Died for us

    Christ’s Life after Death

  • Visited the spirit world

  • Was resurrected

  • Visited the Nephites

  • Organized his church for us through the Prophet Joseph Smith

  • Gives revelation to the leaders of the Church today

  • Loves and helps us

  • Will come again

Suggested Lesson Development

Invite a child to give the opening prayer.

Attention Activity

Have the children name as many words as they can that describe who they are, such as son, daughter, grandchild, student, soccer player, and so on. List these on the chalkboard. In another column on the chalkboard (or use wordstrips) list some of the names that apply to Jesus (see “Christ, Names of” in the Bible Dictionary of the LDS edition of the Bible), starting with ones the children may not be familiar with, such as Exemplar, Judge, Rock, Mediator, and moving on to terms they are more likely to know, such as Savior, Redeemer, Creator, and so on. Have the children raise their hands when they know who these names refer to.

Scripture Accounts

Show the picture Jesus the Christ. Explain that Jesus has done many wonderful things for us, not just while he was on the earth but before his birth and after his death and resurrection. Help the children understand that Jesus has done these things to fulfill Heavenly Father’s plan of salvation for us. We call it the plan of salvation because through it and with Jesus’ help we will be able to return to live forever with Heavenly Father and Jesus again (see Moses 1:39). Have the children read John 3:16 out loud. (For suggested ways to teach the scripture account, see “Teaching from the Scriptures,” p. vii.)

Discussion and Application Questions

Study the following questions and the scripture references as you prepare your lesson. Use the questions you feel will best help the children understand the scriptures and apply the principles in their lives. Reading the references with the children in class will help them gain insights into the scriptures.

  • What are some of the things Jesus did before he was born on the earth?

  • Who volunteered to be our Savior? When did he volunteer? (Ether 3:14; Moses 4:2.) Who chose Jesus to be our Savior? (John 3:16; Abraham 3:27.)

  • Who created the earth? When did Jesus create the earth? (Genesis 1:1; Moses 1:33.)

  • Who is Jehovah, or the Lord of the Old Testament? Who gave revelations to the prophets of the Old Testament, such as Moses and Abraham? (Jesus Christ. See “Jehovah” in the Bible Dictionary.) Whom did Moses and all the prophets testify of? (Luke 24:27; Mosiah 13:33.)

  • What did Jesus do while he was on the earth? Have the children list as many things as they can remember about Jesus’ earthly ministry. Why did Jesus do these things for us? (John 15:9, 11.)

  • What did Jesus do after he died? (1 Peter 3:18–20; D&C 138:30; he visited the spirits in prison.) What did Jesus do after he was resurrected? (3 Nephi 11:7–10, 3 Nephi 27:8: visited the Nephites in America and showed them his body; Joseph Smith—History 1:17: visited Joseph Smith to restore the truth; D&C 115:4: organized his church for us.)

  • How does Jesus help each of us today? (Amos 3:7; Matthew 28:20.) (See enrichment activity 2.)

  • What great event are we all waiting for? What prophecies and promises has Jesus revealed about his second coming? (Matthew 24:30–31; D&C 29:11.)

  • How can we show Jesus we are grateful for all he has done for us? (John 15:10, 12.) Help the children think of commandments they can keep to show Jesus they are grateful.

Enrichment Activities

You may use one or more of the following activities any time during the lesson or as a review, summary, or challenge.

  1. 1.

    Look up “Jesus Christ” in the Topical Guide of the LDS edition of the Bible to see Jesus’ many titles and roles. Choose a few of these titles to discuss.

  2. 2.

    Help the children understand that Jesus loves us and guides the Church today. Tell the following story of President Lorenzo Snow, the fifth President of the Church, seeing Jesus in the Salt Lake Temple:

    One evening one of President Snow’s granddaughters was visiting with him in the Salt Lake Temple. When she was leaving, President Snow followed her into the corridor. Suddenly he said, “Wait a moment, Allie, I want to tell you something. It was right here that the Lord Jesus Christ appeared to me at the time of the death of President Woodruff.” He took another step, held out his left hand, and continued, “He stood right here, about three feet above the floor. It looked as though he stood on a plate of solid gold.” President Snow then described the Savior’s appearance and his beautiful white robes. (See LeRoi C. Snow, “An Experience of My Father’s,” Improvement Era, Sept. 1933, p. 677.)

  3. 3.

    Have the children look up the following or similar scriptures to help them review the things Jesus did during his mortal ministry:

  4. 4.

    Sing or read “I Feel My Savior’s Love” (Children’s Songbook, p. 74).

Conclusion

Testimony

Bear testimony of your gratitude for Jesus and for the many things he has done for us and continues to do for us. Tell the children how grateful you are for the opportunity to study more about Jesus’ time on earth.

Suggested Home Reading

Suggest that the children study John 15:9–13 at home as a review of this lesson.

Invite a child to give the closing prayer.