17 Therefore they separated themselves one from another, and went forth among them, every man alone, according to the word and power of God which was given unto him.
18 Now Ammon being the chief among them, or rather he did administer unto them, and he departed from them, after having blessed them according to their several stations, having imparted the word of God unto them, or administered unto them before his departure; and thus they took their several journeys throughout the land.
The Apostle Paul taught that we receive the gospel not only by “word” but also by “power” (1 Thessalonians 1:5). As we read earlier this week, the sons of Mosiah studied the scriptures, fasted, and prayed so that they would not only know the words of the prophets but would have the companionship of the Holy Ghost, which enabled them to teach with power. Ammon, as their leader, added to their preparation by (1) giving them priesthood blessings and (2) teaching them the words of the scriptures. These activities reinforced their individual efforts to learn the word of God and to invite His power as they taught.
Brother David M. McConkie, who served as second counselor in the General Sunday School Presidency, taught teachers that they needed both the word and the power of God in order to fulfill their role successfully:
The word of the gospel is written in the scriptures, and we can obtain the word by diligently searching. The power of the gospel comes into the lives of those who so live that the Holy Ghost is their companion and who follow the promptings they receive. Some focus their attention only on obtaining the word, and they become experts in delivering information. Others neglect their preparation and hope that the Lord in His goodness will somehow help them get through the class period. You cannot expect the Spirit to help you remember the scriptures and principles you have not studied or considered. In order to successfully teach the gospel, you must have both the word and the power of the gospel in your life (“Teaching with the Power and Authority of God,” General Conference, October 2013).
Today, as I prepare for opportunities to teach, I will focus on both obtaining the word of God and qualifying for His power in my life. I will dedicate time and energy to better understanding the scriptures. I will also remember that I need to hear and follow the guidance of the Holy Ghost in order to teach by the power of God, and that my students will only truly receive the gospel if they both understand true principles and internalize them by the power of the Holy Ghost.