It is a difficult subject but I pray that the Holy Ghost will be with me so that I may speak, and teach somewhat concerning our Savior Jesus Christ and his method of teaching.
What is a teacher?
A teacher is one who teaches. (hehe… I found this quite funny)
1 a : to cause to know something <taught them a trade>
b : to cause to know how <is teaching me to drive>
c : to accustom to some action or attitude <teach students to think for themselves>
d : to cause to know the disagreeable consequences of some action <I'll teach you to come home late>
2 : to guide the studies of
3 : to impart the knowledge of <teach algebra>
4 a : to instruct by precept, example, or experience
b : to make known and accepted <experience teaches us our limitations>
5 : to conduct instruction regularly in <teach school>
Think back upon your life… I believe you will find as I have that there are a few select teachers that had a dramatic influence on your life.
- Did they not inspire you to do better, to study more, and to improve
- Did they not encourage you when you were down and strengthen your resolve
- Did they not change your attitude and perspective, and cause you to understand
- Did they not answer your questions, and clarify the principles taught
- Was not being in their class a joy, and a privilege and not just a duty
This is the calling of a teacher and the results of being a teacher!!!
Are you a teacher?
What kind of teacher are you?
Who are your students?
Mosiah 18:9 - We are all witnesses of God in all places in whatever we do
D&C 88: 77-79 - We are all commanded to teach one another the doctrines…
Jacob 1:18-19 - Responsibility to others, not found spotless at last day
We have all been commanded to be teachers and witnesses of God in all places and in whatever we do.
I would like to share with you today some principles concerning teaching that will help us all become better teachers and share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with others.
Jesus Christ is our perfect exemplar and as such he is the master teacher.
I wish that I had more time to expound upon the master’s methods and the awesome majesty of his teaching! Unfortunately I am limited in time… and can only briefly describe some of the qualities of his teaching!
I believe that the main point and sum of the whole matter is that when Jesus taught…. He taught with the power and authority and with the Holy Ghost testifying of the truth to the hearers!
Sometimes we consider the perfection of Christ's teaching methods and may feel discouraged. However, in the Book of Mormon we find another man Ammon who also taught and used may of the same methods that Jesus Christ did. This can give us hope that you don't have to be "Perfect" to be a great teacher!
- He knew the thoughts and intents of his students
- He discerned their needs, and what they should be taught
- He customized the message to the individual
- He taught in parables - relates the doctrine in a way the person can understand
- So that they who did not understand would not be condemned.
- So that they who did understand would be edified
- Ammon teaches of God/Great Spirit and the creation Alma 18:29-36
- He taught with authority and not as the scribes
- He taught to a hostile crowd and yet
- He taught from the scriptures
- He taught correct doctrine of God
How can we emulate Jesus Christ in his method of Teaching?
Jesus Christ was a perfect person He never committed any sin and truly was without blemish before God.
He had the fullness of the spirit, and had greater power than any man!
With him the spirit was never grieved and never withdrawn!
(Teaching pg 188)(D&C 121:37)
I would suggest three ways that we may become better teachers of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
1. Become men/women of sound understanding and knowledge of the doctrines of the kingdom!
- Alma 17:3-5 When they taught they taught with power and authority of God!(vs 3)
- Prayer and Fasting
- Spirit of Prophecy:
- Spirit of Revelation:
- Taught with Power and Authority of God
- Alma 5:45-46 They knew of themselves that what they taught was true
- Prayer and Fasting
- Know through Holy Spirit
- Revelation and Spirit of Prophecy
- You should be able and ready to answer any question concerning the gospel… (or at least know where to go for the answers!)
- 1 Peter 3.15 - ready at all times and places to give an answer to every man that asket - the reason of the hope in you
2. Seek after the best gifts and ask for help in receiving them
Seek after the best gifts… some of them are teaching:
D&C 46:17-18 the word of wisdom - the word of knowledge that all may be taught to be wise and have knowledge
3. Monitor yourself; meditate upon where you are and what you should be doing!
We should experience a daily striving for an increased obedience and perfection in our lives. "What manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am," said the Savior. (3 Ne. 27:27)(D&C 121:37 – amen to priesthood of that man!)
This is a gauge of where you are in your ability to teach and testify of Jesus Christ!
- Do you study your scriptures every day – not just read them… but study them?
- Do you receive revelation regularly – in school, work, and at home?
- Do you expect and find it a common experience to feel the Holy Ghost?
- Do you fast and pray with a purpose and expect a result?
- Do you testify of Jesus Christ to others?
- Do you magnify your priesthood by fulfilling your callings?
- Are there any sins, of commission or omission that you are not repenting of?
- Do you hold anger, resentment, or negative feelings toward another?
- Are you Teachable? (Do you attend your church meetings expecting to learn?)
Alma 26:21-25 What natural man knows the things of God?
22 he that repenteth and exerciseth faith, and bringeth forth good works, and prayeth continually without ceasing—unto such it is given to know themysteries of God
23 People in Zarahemla laughed us to scorn that we would even consider teaching our brothern the Lamanites!
24 Do you think they will repent? Who are so hard hearted and bloodthirsty
25 Let us take up arms instead and destroy them
Remember that the Holy Ghost is real, revelation is real, and we should expect revelation to be a real influence in our lives.
To teach the gospel to ones children, one must be full of the spirit, and receive revelation to know and understand their needs and how best to strengthen them.
The most important convert you will ever have is your children!