Notes: The Organization of the Church
“If I had a chance to teach one thing it would be what it means and how it feels to exercise faith in Jesus Christ unto repentance.”
“To do it, I would try to take the person I loved on a journey ( you may even
close your eyes) a journey from when we were with a loving Father in Heaven
to when we can go home to Him again. We would see the fall of Adam and Eve
and feel its effects on us. We would go to Bethlehem and rejoice at the birth of
the Son of God, and to the Garden and to Golgotha as our hearts break at the
transcendent gift of the Atonement. And we would go to the open tomb, and
to Galilee, and to this hemisphere to feel hope in keeping the commandments
of a Risen Lord. Then we would go to a grove in New York to watch the boy
Joseph Smith talk with God the Father and his resurrected Son, to begin the
errand that restored the ordinances of the gospel, which can lead us home
again. “ President Henry B. Eyring
The history of the Organization of the Church
- “A great and marvelous work is about to come forth among the children of men” D&C 4:1
- Joseph’s account of the meeting states that it was opened with solemn prayer. It was a joyous occasion with a great outpouring of the Spirit. Joseph then asked whether those present would accept him and Oliver as teachers and whether or not they wanted to organize. Unanimous approval was given, Joseph ordained Oliver an elder and Oliver ordained Joseph an elder. This procedure met the requirements to incorporate a religious society in the State of New York along with the requirement that there be six members.
- President Gordon B. Hinckley said, “Joseph Smith and his associates met in the inconspicuous log house… and organized the Church of Christ…. From that quiet village has grown a movement that today is scattered through some 160 nations of the earth….
The doctrine of the Church of Christ
- D&C 20: 37 (pearl) “ … All those who humble themselves before God, and desire to be baptized, and come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits and witness before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon the them name of Jesus Christ, having a determination to serve him to the end…”
- “When you take upon yourself the name of Jesus Christ you see yourself as His. You put Him and His work first in your life. You seek what He wants rather than what you want and what the world teaches you to want.” (True to the Faith)
- D&C 42:14 (pearl) “And the Spirit shall be given unto you by the prayer of faith; and if ye receive not the Spirit, ye shall not teach.”
- D&C 81:5 (pearl) “Wherefore, be faithful; stand in the office which I have appointed unto you; succor the weak lift up the hands which hang down and strengthen the feeble knees….”
- D&C 115:5 (pearl) “Verily, I say unto you all; arise and shine forth, that thy light may be a standard for the nations.”
- “Sometimes we use the terms gospel and church interchangeably, but they are not the same. They are however, exquisitely interconnected, and we need both…… It is possible to be active in the Church and less active in the gospel… Activity in the Church is an outward indication of our spiritual desire….. As we concentrate on the gospel, the church will become more, not less of a blessing in our lives.” Elder Donald L. Hallstrom
- Difficult days are ahead. Rarely in the future will it be easy or popular to be a faithful Latter-Day Saint. Each of us will be tested. The Apostle Paul warned that in the latter days, ‘those who diligently follow the Lord shall suffer persecution’ that persecution can either crush you into silent weakness or motivate you to be more exemplary and courageous in your daily lives.” President Russell M. Nelson
“…the only true and living Church”
- D&C 1:30 “…might have power to lay the foundation of this church, and to bring it forth out of obscurity and out of darkness, the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth.”
- “This is the true Church, the only true Church, because in it are the keys of the priesthood. Only in this Church has the Lord lodged the power to seal on earth and to seal in heaven as He did in the time of the Apostle Peter. Those keys were restored to Joseph Smith, who then was authorized to confer them upon the members of the quorum of the Twelve.” President Henry B. Eyring
- “There will be somethings that take patience and faith. You may not like what comes from the authority of the Church. It may contradict your political views. It may contradict your social views. It may interfere with some of your social life. But if you listen to these things, as if from the mouth of the Lord himself, with patience and faith, the promise is that ‘the gates of hell shall not prevail against you; yea, and the Lord God will disperse the powers of darkness from before you, and cause the heavens to shake for our good, and his names glory.’” President Harold B. Lee
- Our main defense against Satan’s deceptions must be a strong abiding testimony that the Church is true. It’s not true “if”, it’s not true “but”, it’s not true “except.” It’s just true!
- We must find out if this is “the only true and living church” for ourselves.
- Give us strength to live it – to be converted to His gospel through His Church by exercising faith in Jesus Christ unto repentance.