The following assignments include various learning activities, such as questions, lists, essays, charts, comparisons, contrasts, and surveys. To receive credit for this lesson, you must complete the number of assignments indicated below and submit them to your institute instructor or administrator. You may submit your work either electronically or on paper, handwritten or typed.
Each lesson should take approximately 60–90 minutes to complete, the same amount of time you would typically spend in a weekly institute class. Since reading the scripture block listed in the lesson heading is expected of all institute students prior to class, the estimated time for each assignment does not include the time you need to spend reading the scripture block.
Complete assignment 2 and either assignment 1 or 3:
1. Doctrine and Covenants 49. A Message to the Shakers
The Shakers were formally known as the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing.
Read the institute student manual commentary “D&C 49:4: What Are Some of the Beliefs of the Shakers That Leman Copley Was to Forsake?” (page 105). Then study Doctrine and Covenants 49. Make a list of at least four of the false beliefs held by the Shaker community. Next to each of the four items on your list, record a brief summary statement of what the Lord revealed in this section about the truth of that topic.
In connection with Doctrine and Covenants 49:15–17, read Doctrine and Covenants 131:1–4; 1 Timothy 4:1–3; and the student manual commentary “D&C 49:15: The Shakers Believed That the Highest Type of Christian Life Was Celibacy” (page 106). Write a paragraph explaining how anything that interferes with marriage between a woman and a man hinders God’s plan for His children.
What does Doctrine and Covenants 89:12–13 add to the principle taught in Doctrine and Covenants 49:18–19? Write a paragraph summarizing what the following sources teach about human responsibilities toward animals:
- Doctrine and Covenants 49:21 and its footnotes
- Doctrine and Covenants 59:18–20
- Genesis 1:26–27
- Student manual commentary “D&C 49:18–21: ‘Wo Be unto Man That Sheddeth Blood or Wasteth Flesh and Hath No Need’” (page 106)
Write a paragraph explaining what difference it makes for you to know that the Lord makes the truth known through prophets. Include in your paragraph an example of a popular false idea in the world today that prophets have explained and clarified. (For example: The world’s view that drinking alcohol is perfectly acceptable and is just a matter of personal preference.) Describe how following the truth that is taught by prophets enables you to avoid much sorrow and pain.
2. Doctrine and Covenants 50. “That Which Doth Not Edify Is Not of God”
Satan uses many false spirits to deceive. Read the student manual “Historical Background” for section 50 (page 107). Then read Doctrine and Covenants 50:1–9 and write answers to the following:
- Why did this revelation need to be given?
- How did Satan try to deceive Saints in the early Church?
- What strategies do you think Satan is using to deceive the Saints today?
- What insight does 2 Nephi 2:17–18, 27 add to what Satan and his followers are trying to accomplish?
- Look in the triple combination index under “Deceit, Deceive” (page 75) or in the Guide to the Scriptures under “Deceit, Deceive, Deception.” From the list of references found there, make a list of 5–6 things you can do to avoid being deceived by Satan.
Read Doctrine and Covenants 50:10–22. Then respond in writing to the following:
- What are the responsibilities of those who teach the gospel?
- What are the responsibilities of those who receive the gospel?
- Describe how differently you feel when listening to someone who teaches with the Spirit in contrast to someone who teaches without it “or some other way” (D&C 50:17).
- From Joseph Smith’s example, describe one way to receive the word by the Spirit.
- What can you do to more actively invite the Holy Ghost as you study the gospel, both privately and in classroom settings?
Study Doctrine and Covenants 50:22–25. Write a few sentences that explain how you can know when learning by the Spirit has taken place.
After reading Doctrine and Covenants 50:26–36, write answers to the following questions:
- What is the correlation between personal purity and spiritual power?
- How does this correlation relate to the principles taught in Doctrine and Covenants 121:34–40?
Write a brief statement that explains how the Savior’s words in Doctrine and Covenants 50:40–46 can help you during times of discouragement.
3. Doctrine and Covenants 51–56. Laborers in the Vineyard
Read the student manual “Historical Background” for section 51 (page 110). Although Doctrine and Covenants 51 is primarily about how Bishop Partridge was to minister to the Saints as they lived the law of consecration, write a few sentences about how you think the counsel given in verses 1–3, 8–13, 18–20 also applies for bishops in the Church today.
- What did the Lord direct Sidney Gilbert to do to qualify for this unique calling?
- Why is it important to “forsake the world”? (D&C 53:2).
- Sidney Gilbert’s assignment in the Church did not appear to be spiritual. What does Doctrine and Covenants 29:34 teach concerning all the Lord’s commandments? Also write down two examples of service that may seem temporal or material but which help further the Lord’s spiritual purposes for His children.
Consider how selfishness and greed lead people to break their covenants. Read the student manual “Historical Background” for section 54 (pages 114–15). Then read Doctrine and Covenants 54 and write responses to the following:
- What impact did the actions of Leman Copley and Ezra Thayre have on the Saints journeying from Colesville, New York?
- According to Doctrine and Covenants 54:4, what happens to a covenant when it is broken?
- Using Doctrine and Covenants 82:10; 98:15; and Ecclesiastes 5:4–5, explain the importance of keeping your covenants and the consequences of not keeping them.
- What counsel does Doctrine and Covenants 54:10 provide to those who are affected by the selfish actions of others?
Both the rich and the poor are susceptible to pride. As you read Doctrine and Covenants 56:1–8, 14–15, make a list of the manifestations of pride you find. Then write answers for the following questions:
- What warnings are given to the rich? (see Doctrine and Covenants 56:16).
- What warnings are given to the poor?
- According to Doctrine and Covenants 56:18–20, what blessings await the “pure in heart”?
- What is one goal you would like to make to increase your personal humility?
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