Thought: You have a duty to learn as much as you can. Please encourage your families, your quorum members, everyone to learn and become better educated. If formal education is not available, do not allow that to prevent you from acquiring all the knowledge you can.
(Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Two Principles for Any Economy," Ensign, Nov 2009, 55-58)
Song: "Tell Me the Stories of Jesus," Children's Songbook, p.57.
Scripture: [Learn] Of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth; things which have been, things which are, things which must shortly come to pass; things which are at home, things which are abroad; the wars and the perplexities of the nations, and the judgments which are on the land; and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms. (Doctrine and Covenants 88:79)
Lesson: Invite your family to fill in the blank of the following sentence: "It is impossible for a man or woman to be saved in ____________." To help them, read D&C 131:5–6. Ask:
- What does the word "impossible" mean?
- What do you think "ignorance" means? (A lack of knowledge or learning.)
- Why do you think it is impossible for a man or woman to be saved in ignorance?
- Why is it important to gain knowledge?
- What kind of knowledge do you think is more important for our salvation in the eternities, a knowledge of God or a knowledge of math, sports, and music?
"Not all knowledge is of equal worth. The knowledge that constitutes the wisdom of the heavens is all embraced in the Gospel as taught by Jesus Christ; and wilful ignorance of this, the highest type of knowledge, will relegate its victim to the inferior order of intelligences." (The Vitality of Mormonism, 278.)
Discuss ways your family can gain the most important knowledge.
(Dennis H. Leavitt and Richard O. Christensen, Scripture Study for Latter-day Saint Families: The Doctrine and Covenants, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2004], p. 295.)
Story: [Remember] the dramatic experience that brought Alma to his sense and induced him to apply his heart unto wisdom. This transformation marked the beginning of a phenomenal career.
Almost immediately after Alma's conversion, King Mosiah appointed him state historian. During the rest of his life - a period of about twenty years - in church, historical, judicial, governmental, military, missionary gospel teaching, and prophetic service, he learned nearly every fundamental thing a human being can learn in this life. In intellect, experience, faith, service, and wisdom, Alma has few peers in sacred history.
His prowess as a historian is further witnessed by the fact that 120 pages - almost one-fourth of the 491 pages of the Nephite record, which covers a time period of 1,000 years - are devoted to the twenty years during which he was the dominant figure in the Nephite nation.
A year after his appointment as historian, when under the reign of King Mosiah the form of government was changed, Alma, by the voice of the people, "was appointed to be the first chief judge." In this capacity he was both chief justice and administrative head of state. As chief justice, the record says, "he did judge righteous judgments." (Mosiah 29:42-43.)
As head of state, he was also commander in chief. Unlike ordinary commanders in chief, however, he himself led his armies in the field.
After several successful military campaigns and a succeeding period of peace and prosperity, a moral decline set in among church members. Alma became so concerned that he did a most unusual thing: he resigned his positions as chief judge, head of state, and commander in chief. "And this he did that he himself might go forth among his people . . . [and] preach the word of God unto them, to stir them up in remembrance of their duty, and that he might pull down, by the word of God, all the pride and craftiness and all the contentions which were among his people, seeing no [other] way that he might reclaim them. . . ." (Alma 4:19.)
For the remainder of his life - about ten years - Alma carried on a missionary and gospel teaching campaign seldom, if ever, excelled. As a matter of fact, he and those who were with him began at the time of their conversion "to teach the people, . . . traveling round about through all the land, publishing to all the people the things which they had heard and seen, and preaching the word of God in much tribulation, being greatly persecuted by those who were unbelievers. . . ." (Mosiah 27:32.)
Alma was a great prophet and received many revelations. As to his own knowledge of the things he taught, he said:
Behold, I testify unto you that I do know that these things . . . are true. And how do ye suppose that I know of their surety?
Behold, I say unto you they are made known unto me by the Holy Spirit of God. Behold, I have fasted and prayed many days that I might know these things of myself. And now I do know of myself that they are true; for the Lord God hath made them manifest unto me by his Holy Spirit; and this is the spirit of revelation which is in me. (Alma 5:45-46.)
Alma's life experiences ranged from the sorrow of the damned to the joy of the redeemed. From his experiences he learned much. Being a historian, he learned from history; being chief high priest, he learned from church discipline; being head of state, he learned statecraft; being chief justice, he learned the law; being commander in chief, he learned the lessons of war; being a righteous man, he became acquainted with God.
(Marion G. Romney, Learning for the Eternities, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1977].)
Activity: Play "Clap Seven."
The players are seated in a circle. One person begins the counting, starting with "one." The count continues to the right until "seven" is reached. Instead of saying "seven" the player claps his hands and the count reverses direction. Any number ending in "seven" or a multiple of seven, or a number containing seven, is not spoken but is clapped. The direction of the count is automatically reversed on each clap. Any time a mistake is made, the count starts over with "one." (Alma Heaton, The LDS Game Book, [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1968], p. 150.)
Refreshment Bananas Foster over Ice Cream
- 1/4 cup margarine
- 1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon pineapple extract
- 2 bananas, sliced
- vanilla ice cream
(Lion House Entertaining, [Salt Lake City: Eagle Gate, 2001] p. 55.)