Introduction to Basic Doctrines

Book of Mormon Seminary Teacher Manual, 2012


The following Basic Doctrines should be highlighted in seminary:

  • Godhead

  • Plan of salvation

  • Atonement of Jesus Christ

  • Dispensation, Apostasy, and Restoration

  • Prophets and revelation

  • Priesthood and priesthood keys

  • Ordinances and covenants

  • Marriage and family

  • Commandments

Teachers are to help students identify, understand, believe, explain, and apply these basic doctrines of the gospel as they study the scriptures. Doing so will help students strengthen their testimonies and increase their appreciation for the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Learning the Basic Doctrines will also help students be better prepared to live the gospel and teach these important truths to others. The lessons in this manual were created with the Basic Doctrines in mind. It is important to recognize that other significant doctrines of the gospel will also be emphasized in this manual, even though they are not listed among the Basic Doctrines.

The teaching of basic doctrines of the gospel occurs as you study the scriptures daily with students and as you help them master key scripture passages. You should not divert from sequential scripture study to focus on these doctrines. Rather, you should give attention to them as they naturally arise in the course of study and as you help students master key scripture passages. For example, as you teach the truth that “prophets warn against sin and teach salvation through Jesus Christ” in 1 Nephi 1, you might want to point out to students that this truth can help them understand the Basic Doctrine of “prophets and revelation.” You might ask students to explain what else they know about prophets and revelation. Also, as students learn the scripture mastery passage 2 Nephi 25:23, 26, you could help them see that the passage illustrates one way that prophets fulfill their duty to teach salvation through Jesus Christ. Growth in understanding, believing, and living the Basic Doctrines is a process that occurs over the four years of seminary and continues for the rest of a student’s life.

You may want to provide students with a list of the Basic Doctrines.

Basic Doctrines Assessment

A Basic Doctrines Assessment has been designed to provide teachers with information they can use to better bless the lives of their students. We recommend that teachers administer this assessment during the first week of class and again toward the end of the year. To find the Basic Doctrines Assessment and other assessments on the S&I website (si.lds.org), search using the keyword assessment.

Teachers who send their students’ assessment results to the S&I Office of Research will receive a report that will help them adapt their teaching to better meet the needs of their students. For example, if results indicate that students did not understand the doctrine of repentance, several lessons in the yearly curriculum would be identified that may help students better understand this doctrine. As teachers prayerfully use this information in their sequential scripture teaching, our youth and young adults will be better prepared to accomplish the Objective of Seminaries and Institutes of Religion.