Jul 28, 2014

Baptism (FHE)

I'm getting this Family Home Evening posted late, I know.  But, here is last week's lesson!  I based it on the Gospel Principles manual chapter 20, Baptism

Song: We sang song #103 from the primary Children's Songbook, When I am Baptized. This was my favorite song when I was in Primary.  It goes as follows:
1. I like to look for rainbows whenever there is rain
And ponder on the beauty of an earth made clean again.
2. I know when I am baptized my wrongs are washed away,
And I can be forgiven and improve myself each day.
Chorus:  I want my life to be as clean as earth right after rain.
I want to be the best I can and live with God again.

Lesson:  A gospel principle is a true belief or teaching.  An ordinance is a rite or a ceremony.  Baptism is the third principle of the gospel and the first ordinance.  We are commanded to be baptized (Matthew 28:19–20).  We must be baptized for the remission of our sins, for this is the only way to fully apply the Atonement in our lives and achieve full forgiveness (Mark 1:4).  We must be baptized to become members of Christ's Church (D&C 20:37).  We must be baptized before we can receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Moses 6:52).  We must be baptized to show obedience (2 Nephi 31:12–13).  We must be baptized to enter the Celestial Kingdom (2 Nephi 31:17–18).

 There is only one correct mode of baptism.  A person having the proper priesthood has authority to baptize "shall go down into the water with the person who has presented himself or herself for baptism...then shall he immerse him or her in the water, and come forth again out of the water" (D&C 20:73–74). Immersion is necessary. The Apostle Paul taught that being immersed in water and coming out again is symbolic of death, burial, and resurrection (Romans 6:3–5).  Baptism by immersion by a person having the proper authority is the only acceptable way of being baptized.  Baptism should occur at or after the age of accountability.  Every person who has reached 8-years of age and is accountable for their actions should be baptized (Moroni 8:9–22).

We make covenants when we are baptized.  When we are baptized, we make covenants with the Lord to:
1. Come into the fold of God (join Christ's family)
2. Bear one another's burdens (serve others)
3. Stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all places (testify of God always)
4. Serve God and keep His commandments (keep the commandments)
(Mosiah 18:8, 10)

When we are baptized and are keeeping the covenents of baptism, the Lord promises to:
1. Forgive our sins
2. Pour out His spirit more abundantly upon us (have His spirit with us)
3. Give us daily guidance and the help of the Holy Ghost (Holy Ghost will guide us)
4. Let us come forth in the First Resurrection and give us Eternal Life (live forever with God and our families)
(Acts 2:38; D&C 49:13; Mosiah 18:10; Acts 2:38; D&C 20:77; Mosiah 18:9)

Baptism gives us a new beginning.  With baptism, we begin a new way of life, and this is one of the great blessings of baptism.  We receive a new start on our way toward our eternal goal.

Activity: I got this activity from lds.org.  On small sheets of paper, I wrote the first names of our family in different colors, then taped them to a wall.  Next, on small sheets of paper, I wrote our last name many times in the same color and taped these to a wall.  I told June to go find her name on the first wall.  Since we're still working on letters, I had her look for her purple name.  Once she found it, we went to the next wall and I told her to find her last name.  I told her to look for her pink last name.  Since all of them were pink, this was easier.  I then explained that she had to search until she found the only paper with her first name, but she could take the first paper she found with her last name. Our first names belong to us individually, but our last name belongs to everyone in the family and shows we are a member of the family. Our family name is important and we should be proud of it.  We want all who know us to associate our family name with good, positive things.  Our family should stand for certain things:  we are faithful, we are honest, we try to be friendly, we help others, we are honorable, we are considerate, we are strong. What we do reflects back on our family. Each of us have the responsibility to help make our family name respected.  

I had June find our picture of Christ and explained that just as we were born into our family when we came to earth, we are born into another family when we are baptized. At baptism we become members of Jesus’ church or members of his family. We make a covenant with Heavenly Father to take upon us the name of Christ.  This gives us certain responsibilities that goes with becoming part of Christ's family, and these responsibilities are the covenants we make at baptism.  We must live as Christ did and keep the commandments, and if we fall short we must repent.  In turn, we receive the blessings of being a member of Christ's family, which are that we will achieve exhalation.

She liked this activity and wore her names on her shirt the rest of the night.  For older children, I would hide the names around the house and have them search.  Since June and I attended a couple baptisms this month, she was able to associate the lesson with her experience.

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