Posts Tagged 'The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints'

The Sixth Article of Faith

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,

We believe in the same organization that existed in the Primitive Church, namely, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth.

In Ephesians 4:11 we read the following:

10 He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

We believe that at the time when the Savior established his church, there were callings put into place. These included apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so on. In Luke 6:13 we read, “And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles”. There are twelve who were called, or chosen by Christ, to be special witnesses of Him and to lead his church. Likewise, there are twelve apostles called today, to lead the church and to stand as special witnesses of the life, ministry, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. When the organization of the church in modern times was occurring, revelation was received and in Doctrine and Covenants 107:23 we read, “The twelve traveling councilors are called to be the Twelve Apostles, or special witnesses of the name of Christ in all the world—thus differing from other officers in the church in the duties of their calling.”

There have been prophets since the time of Adam. In Exodus 7:1 we read, “And the Lord said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.” When Christ was living, he was the head of his church on the earth. All the apostles were called to prophesy to the people, and therefore were prophets who spoke to the people with the spirit of revelation. After the death of Christ, the prophets continued to lead His church by the authority of the priesthood and by the power of the Holy Spirit. Today, the twelve apostles are called as prophets of the Lord as well. In particular, one is called to be the head of the church and to act as the mouthpiece of the Lord. In Doctrine and Covenants 124:45 we read, “And if my people will hearken unto my voice, and unto the voice of my servants whom I have appointed to lead my people, behold, verily I say unto you, they shall not be moved out of their place.” It is our duty to listen to the prophets and heed their words. They are there to guide and direct us in the path that will lead us back to God and Jesus Christ.

We believe in pastors who are the shepherds or ministers of the church. In Jeremiah 3:15 we read, “And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.” Those who minister directly to the membership of Christ’s church, are the bishops, who are called to teach the gospel and lead the individual members of the church. They are also called as judges in Israel. In Doctrine and Covenants 58:17 we read, “And whoso standeth in this mission is appointed to be a judge in Israel, like as it was in ancient days, to divide the lands of the heritage of God unto his children”. Bishops come to know the flock of the Savior’s church, on a very personal level, because they care for them individually, the same way a shepherd comes to know his flock.

We also believe in teachers just as existed in the church of ancient times. In 1 Corinthians 12:28 we read, “And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.” There are those who are called by the authority of the priesthood, to be teachers to the people. In Mosiah 23:17 we read, “And it came to pass that none received authority to preach or to teach except it were by him from God. Therefore he consecrated all their priests and all their teachers; and none were consecrated except they were just men.” Verse 18 tells us what the teachers were called to do. “Therefore they did watch over their people, and did nourish them with things pertaining to righteousness.” Those who were called to be teachers, did just that. They taught all things related to righteousness. In Exodus 18:20 it says, “And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.” Today, we have teachers called to share the joy of the gospel with all people. Those who are called by the priesthood, are teachers of all the things that we keep us safe from temptations, the those things that we must follow in order to receive salvation.

Evangelists is commonly consider to be one who preaches the gospel. In 1 Timothy 4:5 we read, “But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry.” There were those who traveled on missions to proclaim the gospel, such as Timothy. We do believe in having traveling preachers of the gospel, more commonly referred to as missionaries, but that is not the only understanding of what an evangelist is. In modern revelation we read that an evangelical minister is a patriarch. (See the footnote for ‘evangelical minister’ for D&C 107:39) According to the Bible Dictionary, Joseph Smith said, “Wherever the Church of Christ is established in the earth, there should be a Patriarch for the benefit of the posterity of the Saints”. Patriarch today are called to give blessings to the saints, which tell them what is in store for them if they will live righteously. These blessings are much like the patriarchal blessings of fathers given to their children in ancient times. To bring the two understandings of this office together. A patriarch is responsible for giving blessings which apply the gospel directly to the lives of the members of the church, therefore taking the gospel to the people.

We believe that there are other offices in the church, that were established by Christ, such as seventies, elders, priests and so on. These offices have been restored in the church today. They are offices of the priesthood, and these individuals are called and directed by the power of the priesthood in order to organize and unify the church. We believe that there must be order in the kingdom of God. Likewise, there must be order in the church of Christ on this earth. Christ knew best how the design of His church should be, and therefore we believe that we should follow this design within the church today. I am so grateful for the general authorities of the church, the prophets and apostles, because they guide the entire church in its progress as a whole. We have the opportunity this weekend to listen to the prophet, apostles and other church leaders. I am so excited for their loving words because they help me to grow so much as a person. I am also extremely grateful that we have local leaders, such as bishops, teachers, and patriarchs, who are called to give us more personal and direct attention. Because of these local leaders, the individual members of the church are watched over, guided, taught, and directed in the ways that are right.

Advertisements

D&C Section 115

This revelation was given through the prophet, Joseph Smith, to the church leadership. It was regarding the church in Far West, Missouri.

1 Verily thus saith the Lord unto you, my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and also my servant Sidney Rigdon, and also my servant Hyrum Smith, and your counselors who are and shall be appointed hereafter;
2 And also unto you, my servant Edward Partridge, and his counselors;
3 And also unto my faithful servants who are of the high council of my church in Zion, for thus it shall be called, and unto all the elders and people of my Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, scattered abroad in all the world;
4 For thus shall my church be called in the last days, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Here is the revelation where the church received its name from the Lord. From this point on, the church was known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In studying about the name of the church, I learned that this puts us as saints, in a partnership with the Lord. It is both the church of the Lord, Jesus Christ, and the church of the saints in these latter-days. This is shown in the work of the church as well. All things that we do are in the name of Jesus Christ, and His church is for the benefit of the saints.

5 Verily I say unto you all: Arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard for the nations;
6 And that the gathering together upon the land of Zion, and upon her stakes, may be for a defense, and for a refuge from the storm, and from wrath when it shall be poured out without mixture upon the whole earth.

Zion and the stakes of Zion are to be a place for defense and refuge from the world. The church is a place where we can feel safe. When the world is turning upside-down in so many ways and righteousness is mocked in every way, we can turn to the church in the stakes throughout the world and find that refuge and defense. The church must always be an example and a standard to the world. All of the saints in the church have the responsibility to uphold the values of the gospel and stand upright as an example to all people.

7 Let the city, Far West, be a holy and consecrated land unto me; and it shall be called most holy, for the ground upon which thou standest is holy.
8 Therefore, I command you to build a house unto me, for the gathering together of my saints, that they may worship me.
9 And let there be a beginning of this work, and a foundation, and a preparatory work, this following summer;
10 And let the beginning be made on the fourth day of July next; and from that time forth let my people labor diligently to build a house unto my name;
11 And in one year from this day let them re-commence laying the foundation of my house.
12 Thus let them from that time forth labor diligently until it shall be finished, from the cornerstone thereof unto the top thereof, until there shall not anything remain that is not finished.
13 Verily I say unto you, let not my servant Joseph, neither my servant Sidney, neither my servant Hyrum, get in debt any more for the building of a house unto my name;
14 But let a house be built unto my name according to the pattern which I will show unto them.
15 And if my people build it not according to the pattern which I shall show unto their presidency, I will not accept it at their hands.
16 But if my people do build it according to the pattern which I shall show unto their presidency, even my servant Joseph and his counselors, then I will accept it at the hands of my people.

Far West was to be a place consecrated to the Lord, and the saints were to build a temple there according to the instructions that would be given to the first presidency. This temple was never actually built because during the work, the persecutions of the saints grew to be too much and they were forced to leave again. I know that this was not in vain though. I believe the each time they showed their obedience, even though these things were not completed, they grew stronger and more faithful. This growth would prepare them for the difficult times that were still ahead of them.

17 And again, verily I say unto you, it is my will that the city of Far West should be built up speedily by the gathering of my saints;
18 And also that other places should be appointed for stakes in the regions round about, as they shall be manifested unto my servant Joseph, from time to time.
19 For behold, I will be with him, and I will sanctify him before the people; for unto him have I given the keys of this kingdom and ministry. Even so. Amen.

Far West was supposed to be a gathering place for the saints. There is a possibility that things may have worked out differently for the saints if they had followed this counsel more obediently and if more of them has “speedily” gathered together in Far West. As it was, the saints were not strong enough to remain safe from their enemies and they were eventually forced to leave another city that was to be dedicated to the Lord.

The Lord told the saints here, that he would lead the prophet because the prophet had the necessary keys to lead the people. The prophets continue today to hold the necessary keys to lead the saints. I am so grateful for Joseph Smith and for our modern prophet, Thomas S. Monson. They are men that were called of God. I love their counsel and I hope to be able to live as they would want me to, which I know is the way that the Lord would want me to live.

Baptism

(View the entire lesson here: Baptism)

Baptism

The Commandment to Be Baptized

Why must we be baptized?

“We believe that the first principles and ordinances of the Gospel are: first, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ; second, Repentance; third, Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; fourth, Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost (Articles of Faith 1:4).” Baptism is an ordinance we must make in order to be accepted back into the presence of God. All people will be resurrected and judged for their works, but only those who obey the commandment to be baptized will be able to gain exaltation into the celestial kingdom. In John 3 we read, “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God (v. 3). . . Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God (v. 5).” Baptism makes of clean of all sin and therefore worthy to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, which will not stay where there is sin.

We Must Be Baptized for the Remission of Our Sins

Like it says in the fourth article of faith (see above), baptism is for the remission of sins. Being baptized cleans us spiritually, just as the water we are immersed in cleans us physically. This ordinance removes our sins from us and allows us complete forgiveness for the wrongs we have done prior to being baptized.

We Must Be Baptized to Become Members of the Church of Jesus Christ

When we are baptized we are formally accepted into Christ’s church. We make a commitment to do all that we can to move His work forward. We take upon ourselves His name and covenant to represent Him in all that we do. We cannot do the work of the Lord, without turning our hearts and desires over to the Lord and deciding to do His will. Our desires and the works we do in this life, will be the proof provided at the judgment day.

We Must Be Baptized before We Can Receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost

Just as I said above, being baptized by water prepares us for the baptism of the spirit. The Gift of the Holy Ghost is so precious. It will be the one thing that will always guide us to do what is right and to stay on the strait and narrow path that returns to our Father in Heaven. We should all have a desire to have this amazing gift.

We Must Be Baptized to Show Obedience

This life is an opportunity for all of God’s children to prove ourselves worthy of His blessings of eternal life and exaltation. The key to proving ourselves is obedience. We have been given the commandment to be baptized. We must be obedient to all of the commandments, if we desire to return to live with God again. In Matthew 3 we read, “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him (v. 13). But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me (v. 14)? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him (v 15).” If the purpose of baptism was strictly for remission of sins, then the Savior himself would not have needed it. It is however a commanded ordinance, and all men must be obedient to receive the blessings of eternal life.

We Must Be Baptized to Enter the Celestial Kingdom

If we wish to enter the Celestial kingdom, then we must be “born of water and of the Spirit” (see John 3:3, 5 above). I know that we all have this desire somewhere within us because we all chose to follow the Savior and come down to the earth to be tested. We all were excited to prove ourselves worthy and I am sure that before coming to this earth, every person who has ever lived or will ever live, felt that returning to live with God was their goal. Only those who have been baptized, can be worthy of the glory of the Celestial kingdom.

The Correct Mode of Baptism

How should we be baptized?

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we believe that the proper way to be baptized is by immersion and only after we have repented of our sins. The Lord revealed to the early saints the manner in which we should be baptized. In D&C 20 we read, “Baptism is to be administered in the following manner unto all those who repent (v. 72)—The person who is called of God and has authority from Jesus Christ to baptize, shall go down into the water with the person who has presented himself or herself for baptism, and shall say, calling him or her by name: Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen (v. 73). Then shall he immerse him or her in the water, and come forth again out of the water (v. 74).” In Matthew 3:16 we read that Jesus was baptized he came out of the water. We follow his example when we are brought out of the water as well. It is important to note also, that this can only be performed by one who has authority from God (see D&C 20:73 above). Anything else is not recognized by God as baptism, and is done in vain.

In the Book of Mormon, the Savior himself taught the precise way that baptism should be performed. In 3 Nephi 11 we read, “And now behold, these are the words which ye shall say, calling them by name, saying (v. 24): Having authority given me of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen (v. 25). And then shall ye immerse them in the water, and come forth again out of the water (v. 26). And after this manner shall ye baptize in my name; for behold, verily I say unto you, that the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost are one; and I am in the Father, and the Father in me, and the Father and I are one (v. 27).”

Why is authority to perform a baptism important?

The authority from God is required for all things that are done in the name of the Lord. In order to make the covenants of baptism two parties must be present; the person who is being baptized and committing to keep the commandments of God, and one who is authorized to stand in place of the Lord (because God is not physically there) to commit to give the promised blessings. Otherwise, there is no covenant and therefore there are no blessings that can be given by God.

In what ways is baptism by immersion like the burial and Resurrection of the Savior?

In Romans 6 we read, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound (v. 1)? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein (v. 2)? Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death (v. 3)? Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life (v. 4). For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection (v. 5): Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin (v. 6).” When we are baptized with water, we are fully buried by it. When the Savior died, he was buried in the tomb. Then he was resurrected and came forth out of the tomb to live again. When we are baptized, we are brought out of the water, ready to live again. Writing this also makes me realize that the person who is in effect acting in place of the Lord, lifts us out of the water, just as the Lord is the only person who can lift us from the grave unto resurrection. This realization, in addition to the knowledge that only the Lord can free us from the sin that keeps us bound, makes the ordinance of baptism even more sacred to me.

Baptism at the Age of Accountability

Who should be baptized? What might you say to a friend who believes that infants need to be baptized?

All people who have the desire to be baptized and who understand and are willing to repent of their sins, should be baptized. There are some religions who perform baptisms of infants and children who do not understand fully what is right and wrong. As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we do not believe that this is God’s will for little children. In Moroni 8, Mormon teaches us regarding this ordinance. “Listen to the words of Christ, your Redeemer, your Lord and your God. Behold, I came into the world not to call the righteous but sinners to repentance; the whole need no physician, but they that are sick; wherefore, little children are whole, for they are not capable of committing sin; wherefore the curse of Adam is taken from them in me, that it hath no power over them; and the law of circumcision is done away in me (v. 8 ). And after this manner did the Holy Ghost manifest the word of God unto me; wherefore, my beloved son, I know that it is solemn mockery before God, that ye should baptize little children (v. 9). Behold I say unto you that this thing shall ye teach—repentance and baptism unto those who are accountable and capable of committing sin; yea, teach parents that they must repent and be baptized, and humble themselves as their little children, and they shall all be saved with their little children (v. 10). And their little children need no repentance, neither baptism. Behold, baptism is unto repentance to the fulfilling the commandments unto the remission of sins (v. 11). But little children are alive in Christ, even from the foundation of the world; if not so, God is a partial God, and also a changeable God, and a respecter to persons; for how many little children have died without baptism (v. 12)! Wherefore, if little children could not be saved without baptism, these must have gone to an endless hell (v. 13). Behold I say unto you, that he that supposeth that little children need baptism is in the gall of bitterness and in the bonds of iniquity; for he hath neither faith, hope, nor charity; wherefore, should he be cut off while in the thought, he must go down to hell (v. 14). For awful is the wickedness to suppose that God saveth one child because of baptism, and the other must perish because he hath no baptism (v. 15). . . . Little children cannot repent; wherefore, it is awful wickedness to deny the pure mercies of God unto them, for they are all alive in him because of his mercy (v. 19). . . . For behold that all little children are alive in Christ, and also all they that are without the law. For the power of redemption cometh on all them that have no law; wherefore, he that is not condemned, or he that is under no condemnation, cannot repent; and unto such baptism availeth nothing (v. 22)—But it is mockery before God, denying the mercies of Christ, and the power of his Holy Spirit, and putting trust in dead works (v. 23).”

Any person, who is not capable of understanding fully about sin, is not capable of sinning and therefore needs no baptism. They are fully covered by the atonement of Christ and His mercy will save them. At the age of 8, all people with full use of their minds, are commanded to repent and be baptized. To anyone who says that children must be baptized, I would ask them when, in the Savior’s ministry, did he ever teach us that children were sinners. He did not. What he did teach can be found in Matthew 19:14 which says, “But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”

We Make Covenants When We Are Baptized

In Mosiah 18 we read, “And it came to pass that he said unto them: Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light (v. 8 ); Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life (v. 9)—Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you (v. 10)?”

What do you think it means to bear one another’s burdens? to stand as a witness of God at all times and in all places?

When others are burdened, it is our responsibility as followers of Christ, to do all that we can to help them. When we serve those who are weighed down with trials, we begin to take some of that load off of their shoulders and these things become easier for that person to bear. Whatever service we can give is a fulfillment of the covenants we make, whether it is to be a listening ear, to give advice, or to physically help someone who cannot do what is needed on their own. When we do these things we are often times an answer to others prayers. We need to be in tune with the spirit so that we can be an instrument in the Lord’s hands.

It is also part of our covenant that we will take the name of Jesus Christ upon us and therefore we must stand as a witness at all times and in all places. This means that we must do more than make Sunday a day of worship. We must live as the Savior would have lived, every day of our lives. We need to remember to reflect the Savior’s life whether we are at church, in or homes, at work, or out in the world. We need to be an example to our children, our families, our peers, and so on. This also means that when we are moved upon by the spirit, we need to share our testimonies of God and His gospel.

Baptism Gives Us a New Beginning

How was your baptism a new beginning?

Baptism was the time when my choice to do what I believe to be right, became a sacred choice to me. I remember feeling clean and ready to commit myself to being good. Being baptized gives us a fresh start with the slate of our lives wiped clean. I love seeing converts of the church right after they are baptized, because you can see a new fire in them. Baptism brings a new excitement and joy in the hope of eternal life.

I am so grateful for the opportunity that I have had to know of the gospel and to make the covenants of baptism with my Father in Heaven. I am grateful to my parents for raising me in the church, so that I did not have to wait to have the blessing of the Holy Ghost. I am so happy to be a member of Christ’s church and to continue to strive daily to do what is right and to be a witness to others.

3 Nephi, Chapter 27

What shall the Church be called?

“And it came to pass that as the disciples of Jesus were journeying and were preaching the things which they had both heard and seen, and were baptizing in the name of Jesus, it came to pass that the disciples were gathered together and were united in mighty prayer and fasting (v. 1).  And Jesus again showed himself unto them, for they were praying unto the Father in his name; and Jesus came and stood in the midst of them, and said unto them: What will ye that I shall give unto you (v. 2)?  And they said unto him: Lord, we will that thou wouldst tell us the name whereby we shall call this church; for there are disputations among the people concerning this matter (v. 3).”  The disciples were troubled with a question that was causing arguing between them.  They wanted to know what the church should be called.

“And the Lord said unto them: Verily, verily, I say unto you, why is it that the people should murmur and dispute because of this thing (v. 4)?  Have they not read the scriptures, which say ye must take upon you the name of Christ, which is my name? For by this name shall ye be called at the last day (v. 5); And whoso taketh upon him my name, and endureth to the end, the same shall be saved at the last day (v. 6).  Therefore, whatsoever ye shall do, ye shall do it in my name; therefore ye shall call the church in my name; and ye shall call upon the Father in my name that he will bless the church for my sake (v. 7).  And how be it my church save it be called in my name? For if a church be called in Moses’ name then it be Moses’ church; or if it be called in the name of a man then it be the church of a man; but if it be called in my name then it is my church, if it so be that they are built upon my gospel (v. 8 ).”  The church needed to be named after Jesus Christ because it was his church.  In D&C 115:4 we read, “For thus shall my church be called in the last days, even The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”  Our church today is still called after his name.  Because our church bears his name, we are reminded of Him.  We go to church to worship the Lord and serve Him, therefore it should be given His name.

“Therefore, whatsoever ye shall do, ye shall do it in my name; therefore ye shall call the church in my name (v. 7) . . .”.  All things done by the priesthood are done in the name of Jesus Christ.  Blessing the sacrament is one that we do every sunday at church.  Also, more commonly, every time we pray, we do it in the name of Jesus Christ.  When people are baptized into the church, it is by His name.  When babies are blessed and people receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, it is also done in His name.  Many more wonderful things are done in His name by the power of the priesthood.  I am so grateful to the Savior, Jesus Christ, for all that He has done for my personally.  I feel so blessed to be a member of His church and to be a witness and participant in so many blessings that are performed in His name.

What is the gospel?

There are many things in this world today that can be deceiving, which look like a good thing from the outside, but are not.  The Savior told the people two ways to tell if a church was truly His church and therefore good and true.  His church would be called in his name and be built upon His gospel (see v. 8 above).  “Verily I say unto you, that ye are built upon my gospel; therefore ye shall call whatsoever things ye do call, in my name; therefore if ye call upon the Father, for the church, if it be in my name the Father will hear you (v. 9); And if it so be that the church is built upon my gospel then will the Father show forth his own works in it (v. 10).  But if it be not built upon my gospel, and is built upon the works of men, or upon the works of the devil, verily I say unto you they have joy in their works for a season, and by and by the end cometh, and they are hewn down and cast into the fire, from whence there is no return (v. 11). For their works do follow them, for it is because of their works that they are hewn down; therefore remember the things that I have told you (v. 12).”

According to the Bible Dictionary, the word gospel means “good news”.  “Behold I have given unto you my gospel, and this is the gospel which I have given unto you—that I came into the world to do the will of my Father, because my Father sent me (v. 13). . . Verily, verily, I say unto you, this is my gospel; and ye know the things that ye must do in my church; for the works which ye have seen me do that shall ye also do; for that which ye have seen me do even that shall ye do (v. 21);”  The Savior’s gospel is that He was sent by Heavenly Father to do what the Father wanted Him to do, and the things we do in the church should be those same things that He did.  These things that the Savior did and that we should do, are good.  The gospel is good.

The Savior discusses different aspects of the gospel.  Jesus Christ was sent to die for men and because of His death and resurrection all men would be resurrected and judged (v. 14-15).  We have the opportunity to repent and be baptized.  Then if we endure to the end, the atonement of Jesus Christ will be able to make us clean at the judgement (v. 16).  God will satisfy justice, so those who do not accept the atonement and endure to the end, will suffer (v. 17).  Through continuing faith and repentance, we can be made clean and enter into the kingdom of God (v. 19).  With repentance and baptism, we can receive the Holy Ghost (v. 20).  We have the Savior as our example and if we follow Him, we will be saved at the last day (v. 21-22).

In verse 21 and 22, the Savior used the word “do” six times.  The gospel is something that we cannot just sit and listen to.  We must be actively involved in living it, in order to be saved.  This is a hard thing for many to willingly take part in.  It can be difficult to give up doing what we may want to do, in order to do what we should do, or rather what God would have us do.  I am so happy that I have a pattern to follow, through the example of Jesus Christ, so that I may return to my Father in Heaven one day.  I am so grateful for the atonement and the great power it has to make me whole.  I am so glad that in this crazy life, I can have a reason for living a good life.  I truly don’t know where or how I would be living today, if it weren’t for the gospel in my life.  It is certainly good news to me.

“What manner of men ought ye to be?”

There is a wonderful primary song that says it all:

I’m trying to be like Jesus; / I’m following in his ways. / I’m trying to love as he did, in all that I do and say. / At times I am tempted to make a wrong choice, / But I try to listen as the still small voice whispers, / “Love one another as Jesus loves you. / Try to show kindness in all that you do. / Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought, / For these are the things Jesus taught.”

“Write the things which ye have seen and heard, save it be those which are forbidden (v. 23).  Write the works of this people, which shall be, even as hath been written, of that which hath been (v. 24).  For behold, out of the books which have been written, and which shall be written, shall this people be judged, for by them shall their works be known unto men (v. 25).  And behold, all things are written by the Father; therefore out of the books which shall be written shall the world be judged (v. 26).  And know ye that ye shall be judges of this people, according to the judgment which I shall give unto you, which shall be just. Therefore, what manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am (v. 27).”

The Savior taught the disciples that they should be the kind of man that He was.  They should love one another, be kind, gentle and loving in all that they did, just as the song says.  Everything that we do is recorded in heaven and we will be judged by these things.  In talking of the Savior, President Ezra Taft Benson said, “That man is greatest who is most like him.”  We should be thinking daily of ways that we can become more Christlike.

“And now I go unto the Father. And verily I say unto you, whatsoever things ye shall ask the Father in my name shall be given unto you (v. 28 ).  Therefore, ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; for he that asketh, receiveth; and unto him that knocketh, it shall be opened (v. 29).  And now, behold, my joy is great, even unto fulness, because of you, and also this generation; yea, and even the Father rejoiceth, and also all the holy angels, because of you and this generation; for none of them are lost (v. 30).  Behold, I would that ye should understand; for I mean them who are now alive of this generation; and none of them are lost; and in them I have fulness of joy (v. 31).  But behold, it sorroweth me because of the fourth generation from this generation, for they are led away captive by him even as was the son of perdition; for they will sell me for silver and for gold, and for that which moth doth corrupt and which thieves can break through and steal. And in that day will I visit them, even in turning their works upon their own heads (v. 32).”

What a wonderful blessing to be told by the Savior that those who were living at that time would not fall away.  If I had been a mother then, I know I would have felt an overwhelming joy at this.  As parents we spend so much time fighting to keep our children living righteously and teaching them how to choose the right and be like Jesus.  Many spend years worrying about their children who have fallen away from the church and the gospel.  To know that they would not be lost, would have been such a wonderful thing to know.  The Nephites who witnessed this coming of the Savior were truly blessed.


About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.
Testimony

Testimony

I made an album with my dad in 2011. Check it out!

Testimony

NEW!!! Digital Downloads (mp3) available directly from the site.

Current Study

Currently I am studying the The Old Testament. I will be studying from the LDS - King James Version of the Bible (see link below). I am studying along with the book, Scripture Study for Latter-day Saint Families: The Old Testament by Dennis H. Leavitt and Richard O. Christensen.

Learn More:

The Book of Mormon

You can order a free copy of the Book of Mormon here:

Book of Mormon Request

Archives

Follow me on Facebook:

My Wonderful Husband and Artist

Advertisements

%d bloggers like this: