Chapter 21: Mosiah 18–24

Book of Mormon Teacher Manual, (2009), 76–78


Introduction

After Alma was converted through the preaching of Abinadi, he began to teach the people who were willing to listen to him. He and his new followers escaped to a place called Mormon, where they received the ordinance of baptism and became unified in their faith. They settled peacefully in a land they called Helam, but they were taken captive by Amulon, a former priest of King Noah who had joined the Lamanites. Just before this, the people who remained in the land of Lehi-Nephi, who were now led by King Noah’s righteous son Limhi, were also placed in bondage by the Lamanites. Both groups came to know that “none could deliver them but the Lord their God” (Mosiah 23:23). As you and your students discuss these accounts, you can gain a greater appreciation for the Lord’s power to deliver us from whatever bondage we experience. You can encourage students to make and keep covenants, be humble, repent, pray, and trust in the Lord.

Some Doctrines and Principles

  • We receive the Spirit of the Lord and the promise of eternal life through our baptismal covenants (see Mosiah 18:1–16).

  • Walking uprightly includes obeying God and serving others (see Mosiah 18:17–30).

  • God is merciful and able to deliver us from bondage (see Mosiah 19–24).

  • God tries our patience and faith (see Mosiah 23–24).

Suggestions for Teaching

Mosiah 18:1–16. We Receive the Spirit of the Lord and the Promise of Eternal Life through Our Baptismal Covenants

Begin by asking students to imagine that a friend has decided to be baptized and confirmed. She asks what she can do to be spiritually prepared.

  • What advice would you give?

Invite students to silently read Mosiah 18:1–7, looking for evidence that the people were prepared for baptism.

  • What evidence did you find?

Invite a student to read Doctrine and Covenants 20:37. Before he or she reads, ask students to listen for additional attitudes and actions that confirm an individual’s readiness to make and keep baptismal covenants.

  • How can the attitudes and actions we have discussed help us make and keep all gospel covenants?

Read Mosiah 18:8–10. Before you read, ask students to follow along and look for elements of the baptismal covenants.

  • What is our part of the baptismal covenants outlined in these verses?

  • What does the Lord promise when we keep our baptismal covenants?

Invite students to divide into pairs and read Mosiah 18:11–16 together. Ask them to mark and discuss the desires of Alma’s people before they were baptized. Also ask them to look for the people’s feelings after they were baptized and for the blessings the people received.

  • What was Alma’s desire as he prepared to do the Lord’s work? (See Mosiah 18:12.)

  • Why do we need the Spirit to be able to serve with “holiness of heart”?

  • After being baptized, Alma and his people were “filled with the Spirit” (Mosiah 18:14) and “filled with the grace of God” (Mosiah 18:16). Why is it important for all Church members to receive these blessings? When have you received these blessings?

Testify of the promises and blessings we receive as we honor our baptismal covenants and follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

Mosiah 18:17–30. Walking Uprightly Includes Obeying God and Serving Others

Write on the board They did walk uprightly before God.

  • What does this statement mean to you?

Have students search Mosiah 18:17–30 in pairs or individually, looking for Alma’s counsel that led the people to “walk uprightly before God.” Suggest that students write the principles they find. After sufficient time, invite them to share what they have found. As students share their responses, you might ask what blessings they can identify—from the scripture block or from their own experience—that come from obedience to that particular counsel.

Encourage students to follow Alma’s counsel and to “walk uprightly” each day by obeying God and serving others.

Mosiah 19–24. God Is Merciful and Able to Deliver Us from Bondage

The student manual includes a chart comparing the experience of the people of Limhi with the experience of the people of Alma (see pages 159–60). You may want to invite students to refer to this chart as they discuss Mosiah 19–24.

Have students review the map titled “Significant Nephite Journeys in the Book of Mosiah” on page 146 in the student manual. Using the map, locate the cities and people mentioned in Mosiah 19–24. Make sure students understand that Limhi and his followers were in the land of Lehi-Nephi and that Alma and his followers were in the land of Helam.

Explain that students will be discussing Mormon’s account of how the Lord delivered the people of Limhi and the people of Alma from the bondage of the Lamanites. Invite students to turn to Mosiah 21:5, and ask a student to read it. Emphasize Mormon’s statement that “there was no way that [the Nephites] could deliver themselves out of [the Lamanites’] hands.”

Write Mosiah 21:13–19; 24:9–16 on the board. Ask students to read these verses silently to discover specific actions that both groups took to receive God’s mercy and deliverance. Based on these actions, invite students to make a list of principles that can guide them in their own difficult circumstances. Invite students to write the principles they find. (Note: President Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles defined a principle as “an enduring truth, a law, a rule you can adopt to guide you in making decisions” [in Conference Report, Apr. 1996, 22; or Ensign, May 1996, 17]. You may want to use this definition to help students understand the kind of principles you want them to list.)

The following chart shows one way to guide this activity. You might put it on the board and suggest that students use it as a model to create their own on paper. List the first action and principle (for Mosiah 21:13–14) to show the students how to complete the chart. Then encourage students to find as many actions as they can and to write a principle for each action.

Mosiah 21:13–19; 24:9–16

Action of the Nephites

Principle

They humbled themselves and cried mightily to God (see Mosiah 21:13–14).

God answers the prayers of those who humbly petition Him.

They were patient (see Mosiah 24:16).

 

Other actions identified by students

 

After students have had enough time to study and ponder, invite them to share the actions and principles they have listed. Provide an opportunity for them to tell about times when they have applied these principles and the Lord has blessed them. Conclude with your testimony about how we cannot deliver ourselves from spiritual bondage and how we need the Lord’s infinite mercy and redeeming love.

Mosiah 23–24. God Tries Our Patience and Faith

Remind students that Alma’s people and Limhi’s people had once been the subjects of King Noah. Have students read Abinadi’s warning in Mosiah 11:23–25. When the people did not heed this warning, Abinadi returned. Have students read his words in Mosiah 12:1, 5. Alma’s people later repented, but they still suffered the consequences of their earlier refusal to repent.

Read Mosiah 23:21–24 and 24:10–16 as a class, or allow students to read these passages silently. After students have read the verses, invite them to share answers to the following questions. Request that they draw phrases from the assigned passages and also that they state insights in their own words.

  • What are some burdens people might bear today? Why do you think our burdens are easier to bear when we cheerfully submit to the Lord’s will?

  • In what ways does the Lord “visit [His] people in their afflictions”? (Mosiah 24:14).

Invite students to recall times when the Lord has visited them in their afflictions. As appropriate, ask if any would like to share their experiences.

Read the following statement by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles:

“There can and will be plenty of difficulties in life. Nevertheless, the soul that comes unto Christ, who knows His voice and strives to do as He did, finds a strength, as the hymn says, ‘beyond [his] own.’ [“Lord, I Would Follow Thee,” Hymns, no. 220.] …

“Brothers and sisters, whatever your distress, please don’t give up and please don’t yield to fear. …

“If you are lonely, please know you can find comfort. If you are discouraged, please know you can find hope. If you are poor in spirit, please know you can be strengthened. If you feel you are broken, please know you can be mended” (in Conference Report, Apr. 2006, 71–72; or Ensign, May 2006, 71).

  • How can you demonstrate patience during difficulties?

  • When have you recognized the strengthening hand of God in your life?

Encourage students to trust in the power, comfort, and healing nature of our Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ.