Old Testament Sunday School Lessons

Why didn’t anyone tell me – about Aaron and Abraham?

December 5, 2015
Why didn’t anyone tell me – about Aaron and Abraham?

Too often we think of Aaron and Abraham and others through a modern lens. I still remember someone asking what it must have been like to be Abraham’s home teaching companion.   I thought about this when someone asked me about this ditty that has been going around: Aaron was a prophet, built a golden […]

Posted in Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Doctrine, Holy Land, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Patriarchy, Polygamy, Prophet, theology, Topical Guide, Uncategorized | 10 Comments »

Texts Before Sects

November 24, 2015
Texts Before Sects

As I’ve taught various classes at church, I’ve been struck by the similarities between frustrations expressed by teachers in using the church-approved materials with the frustrations of the Protestant reformers 500 years ago. One of the fundamental questions of the Protestant reformation was who should be reading and interpreting scripture:  the clergy or the congregation.  In Catholicism, the mass […]

Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Christian, Church Policy, Culture, Doctrine, Faith, General Conference, LDS, leadership, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, New Testament Sunday School Lessons, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, scriptures, seminary | 19 Comments »

Adam, Eve, Garments and Equality

September 22, 2015
Adam, Eve, Garments and Equality

I read a fantastic article yesterday from Rabbi Sacks that made me wish our own Gospel Doctrine lessons were this thoughtful.  I suppose we get what we pay for (and at our rates it’s even a bargain).  Still, we don’t have the excellent mix of thoughtfulness and scholarship that is the hallmark of Jewish scriptural debate […]

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Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Charity, Christian, Criticism, Culture, Doctrine, emotions, Empathy, Feminism, LDS, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Patriarchy, Religion, Sunday School, theology, Women | 18 Comments »

Long Life

August 30, 2015
Long Life

People in the Bible lived a really long time.  Check out this table for the ages of Patriarchs from Adam to Noah. Table 1. Ages of the Patriarchs from Adam to Noah   Patriarch Age Bible Reference 1 Adam 930 Genesis 5:4 2 Seth 912 Genesis 5:8 3 Enosh 905 Genesis 5:11 4 Cainan 910 Genesis […]

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Posted in LDS, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Science and Religion, scriptures | 14 Comments »

Knowledge and Intelligence

August 9, 2015
Knowledge and Intelligence

If “the glory of God is Intelligence”, why did God forbid Adam and Eve to partake of the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil?  Is it because they were children, and didn’t understand how to use knowledge properly?  Why shouldn’t they know about good and evil?

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Posted in Mormon, Mormon Belief, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, scriptures | 13 Comments »

Talks About Talks

February 17, 2015
Talks About Talks

Who came up with the idea of doing lessons and talks about talks, including very recent talks?  Is this an activity that removes us from our own serious personal study of the gospel or does it elevate current teachings with scripture and bolster current leaders’ authority by studying their words?  Is it a worthwhile practice? […]

Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, America, Book of Mormon, Christian, Church Policy, Culture, Faith, General Conference, Jewish Studies, LDS, leadership, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, New Testament Sunday School Lessons, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Prophet | 31 Comments »

Taking My Baal and Going Home

February 5, 2015
Taking My Baal and Going Home

I recently checked the 2013 edition of the scriptures for an entry in the Bible Dictionary that should have been corrected. This is what I gave them as feedback on the site form that asks for it: “Baal.  Possessor, lord. The Sun-god and the male or generative principle in nature. He was worshipped with different […]

Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Church Policy, Criticism, Doctrine, Faith, History, Jewish Studies, LDS, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Mormon Discussion, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, scriptures, seminary | 10 Comments »

Was the Fall a Sin? (Weekend Poll)

October 4, 2014
Was the Fall a Sin?  (Weekend Poll)

Whether you view Adam & Eve as actual people or a story designed to illustrate the nature of man’s separation from God, you can opine on the motives of the act.  What’s your view? Discuss.  

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Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Doctrine, Faith, Freedom, LDS, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons | 11 Comments »

A Prayer from the Sidelines

June 22, 2014
A Prayer from the Sidelines

This is a guest post from Christian Harrison. Today, Kate Kelly — our sister in God and our coreligionist for as long as we’ll keep her — is being tried for apostasy. She’s being tried in absentia, an act of shocking cowardice. Others, too, are facing Church disciplinary courts. It’s an uneasy season… and I’ve […]

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Posted in Apostasy, Excommunication, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons | 11 Comments »

Hagar: Least Appreciated Spiritual Angelic Experience

June 8, 2014
Hagar with Ishmael in the wilderness

Of all women in the Bible, I think the angel visiting Hagar is least appreciated by Christians and Jews.  This is how I summarized the story of Hagar for my daughter. Hagar was born in Egypt and was a servant of the prophet Abraham.  Sarai was Abraham’s first wife and they could not have children.  […]

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Posted in Christian, Mormon, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Women | 5 Comments »

Women of the Bible: Deborah

May 18, 2014
Women of the Bible:  Deborah

Deborah The nation of Israel was at war with Jabin, King of Canaan.  Deborah helped devise a battle plan to lead the children of Israel to victory.  She spoke with Barak (the leader of the Israelite army.)    Barak asked her to accompany him to battle.   The Israelites won the battle.  Deborah prophesied that the other […]

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Posted in Mormon, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Prophet, Women | 7 Comments »

A Few Things My Kids Learned from Reading Ether

May 6, 2014
A Few Things My Kids Learned from Reading Ether

My 15 year old son recently informed us that he gets extra credit if he reads the entire Book of Mormon for seminary.  He doesn’t really need the extra credit, but since he hadn’t read it cover to cover before we said we could help him read it as a family.  We decided to start […]

Posted in Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Book of Mormon, Faith, Freedom, Jesus, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons | 13 Comments »

Women of the Bible: Hannah

April 27, 2014
Women of the Bible:  Hannah

I mentioned in my previous post about Women of the Bible.  (My daughter illustrated these, in case you are not familiar.)  Here’s another story, less well-known, this time from the Old Testament. Hannah Hannah was married to a man named Elkanah.  They had no children which made her sad.  One day Hannah went to the temple […]

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Posted in Mormon, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Women | 13 Comments »

Orthodox and Liberal Interpretations of Abraham

April 21, 2014
Orthodox and Liberal Interpretations of Abraham

The story of Abraham’s attempted sacrifice of Isaac is one of the most perplexing moral dilemmas in all of scripture.  It has long been held up as an example of Abraham’s faithfulness.  Orthodox members do not question the traditional interpretation of the story.  They seem to reason that if God wants you to do something, you […]

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Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Christian, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Prophet | 43 Comments »

Should a Latter Day Saint See Noah?

March 30, 2014
Should a Latter Day Saint See Noah?

This guest post comes from Morgan Deane.  He blogs at Warfare and the Book of Mormon as well as The Arsenal of Venice. I just got out of the movie Noah, and it certainly left a great deal on my mind. With some Christians having issues with the movie I thought it would be wise […]

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Posted in Mormon, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Reviews | 5 Comments »

Getting a Grip on History

March 18, 2014
Getting a Grip on History

There has been a lot of discussion in the b’nacle about what the church can do from a practical standpoint to address the thorny issues in church history.  The traditional approach has been to: 1) keep the curriculum uplifting and free from controversy, 2) to never speak ill or contradict leaders of the past or […]

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Posted in Agency, Anti-Mormon, Apostasy, Book of Mormon, Church Policy, Doctrine, Education, Faith, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, New Testament Sunday School Lessons, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Uncategorized | 28 Comments »

“Am I My Brother’s Keeper?”

February 4, 2014
“Am I My Brother’s Keeper?”

BYU-Idaho released a video last week on YouTube encouraging students to monitor their roommates’ behavior to determine if a roommate has a porn addiction (or implied masturbation issue).  Then, in my ward, we had a lengthy discussion in Sunday School about God’s expectation that we should be our brother’s keeper, leaning heavily on a 1986 […]

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Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, Apostasy, BYU, Education, Faith, Freedom, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Pride, Sunday School, War in Heaven | 47 Comments »

Teaching in the Church as Illustrated by GIFs

December 17, 2013
Teaching in the Church as Illustrated by GIFs

My favorite church callings have always been teaching.  For all those who’ve taught church lessons, these GIFs will remind you of the good times, the bad times, and the amazing times.  Enjoy!

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Posted in Agency, Church Policy, Faith, Freedom, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, New Testament Sunday School Lessons, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons | 7 Comments »

Are Mormons Anti-Modernists?

October 1, 2013
Are Mormons Anti-Modernists?

There are many stories that could easily vie for the title of Scariest Story in the Bible, but I’d like to make a case for the story of the Tower of Babel.  In this story, the people on earth desire to build a tower tall enough to go straight into heaven.  They band together in […]

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Posted in Agency, Apostasy, economics, Faith, Freedom, History, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Pride, Technology, understanding | 23 Comments »

Society, The World, and Being Not of It

February 5, 2013
Society, The World, and Being Not of It

Daniel faced a serious problem.  Darius the king had been tricked by his princes into outlawing prayer.  But Daniel felt beholden to pray to his God.  The society in which he lived restricted his personal freedoms more than his religious society did.  In fact, his religious community went underground due to the persecutions and restrictions of the […]

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Posted in Agency, Alternative Sunday School Lessons, America, Church Policy, Doctrine, Education, Europe, Faith, Freedom, General Conference, Morality, Mormon, Mormon Belief, Mormon Culture, Old Testament Sunday School Lessons, Politics, Polygamy, Uncategorized | 11 Comments »

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