Moroni 1-6 The Church of Jesus Christ
Moroni refused to “deny the Christ” and was therefore literally running for his life (1:1-3). Is your testimony more important to you than your personal safety? Moroni also moved forward with the burdensome charge to protect the sacred records from destruction by enemies (see Mormon 6:6; see also 2 Nephi 26:17; Enos 1:14). Do you recognize the tremendous effort and sacrifice of Mormon, Moroni, and others to bring forth the Book of Mormon? Is your study of the Book of Mormon consistent with your appreciation of it?
With these pressures and priorities, it is impressive that Moroni was careful to “write a few more things, that perhaps they may be of worth unto my brethren [who were also his enemies], the Lamanites” (1:4). We know that Moroni was called “to the ministry” (Moroni 8:1) which presumably means there was still a church and a people of God. But chapter 1 of this book—along with the use of the past tense in chapters 3-6—seem to indicate that by the time Moroni wrote these chapters, there was no longer an organized church nor a people to whom he could minister. Therefore his thoughts and inspiration turned to the future Lamanites (1:4) and to all peoples of the last days (as indicated in the Title Page, which was written by Moroni). Essentially, Moroni’s ministry turned to the yet unborn.
- What do you see in chapters 1-6 which shows that the ordinances of the priesthood were not simply “routine” to the Nephites?
- Make a list of the priesthood ordinances you have received in your life, and find something in chapters 1-6 that can help you rise up to claim the promised blessings that accompany those ordinances.
- How does Moroni 6:4-6, 9 compare to the things we do in the Church of Jesus Christ today?
- How are you blessed by priesthood authority? By righteous bearers of the priesthood? By the gift of the Holy Ghost? By the sacrament? By congregational worship? By the law of the fast? By the nourishing efforts of fellow Saints?
Moroni 2-6 Prayer and Ordinances
Two threads running through each of these five chapters are prayer and priesthood ordinances:
- Jesus taught the Nephite apostles that before bestowing the gift of the Holy Ghost, they were to “call on the Father in my name, in mighty prayer” (2:2).
- The elders of the ancient church “prayed unto the Father in the name of Christ” before proceeding to ordain priests and teachers (3:1-2; verse 3 reveals the wording of this ordination).
- Moroni recorded for us the exact wording of the sacrament prayers (4:2; 5:2; see also D&C 20:77, 79).
- In Moroni’s day church leaders ministered to new members by helping “to keep them continually watchful unto prayer, relying alone on the merits of Christ” (6:4).
- Also, “the church did meet together oft, to fast and to pray” (6:5).
- In Moroni’s day, church meetings were carried out thus: “… as the power of the Holy Ghost led them whether to preach, or to exhort, or to pray, or to supplicate, or to sing, even so it was done” (6:9; see also D&C 20:45; 43:8; 46:2).
What can you do to assure that the ordinances do not become simple routines in your life? What do you see in these verses that can help you enhance the quality of your worship?
Moroni 4-5 The Sacrament
Re-read the sacrament prayers in these chapters, and consider one thing you can do each week to make the sacrament more meaningful to you.
Moroni 6:1-4 Before and After Baptism
Read verses 1-3, looking for what was required of prospective members before they were baptized (see also Mosiah 18:8-10; D&C 20:37). If you were seeking baptism into the Church today, do you feel your current life would fully qualify you for this sacred ordinance?
According to Moroni 6:4, what was done for new members after their baptism? (see also D&C 20:68-69). In what ways have you helped fill these roles and do these things for new members of the Church?