From the time Joseph Smith, Jr. began receiving revelation, as the prophet of the restoration, he kept a record. Soon, the collection of these revelations, and those added by subsequent modern day prophets, comprised the book of modern-day scripture known as the Doctrine & Covenants. In the introduction to this book we are told:

mormon testimonyThe Doctrine and Covenants is a collection of divine revelations and inspired declarations given for the establishment and regulation of the kingdom of God on the earth in the last days. Although most of the sections are directed to members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, the messages, warnings, and exhortations are for the benefit of all mankind, and contain an invitation to all people everywhere to hear the voice of the Lord Jesus Christ, speaking to them for their temporal well-being and their everlasting salvation.

In Section 84 of this book we find a powerful promise offered by the Lord to His followers:

For I will forgive you of your sins with this commandment—that you remain steadfast in your minds in solemnity and the spirit of prayer, in bearing testimony to all the world of those things which are communicated unto you. D&C 84:61

I am continually amazed by the avenues the Lord provides by which we may repent, pay for our sins and find ourselves on that path to eternal life.

My testimony had its beginnings in our Family Home Evenings and scripture study. As I mentioned in my conversion story I always recognized the truth in the words being read to me, even more so when I began studying for myself. All testimonies begin in humble ways. They begin with a small particle of faith in God. Alma, a Book of Mormon prophet, said:

If ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for a portion of my words. (Alma 32:27)

It is amazing how a testimony can grow by simple prayer, exercising of faith and studying of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As you learn, the Holy Ghost, who is the Testifier of Truth, will do that very thing for you, he will testify to you of the truthfulness of what you are studying. As you pray and ask for guidance, confirmation and knowledge, the Holy Ghost will strengthen your testimony as your prayers are answered.

I remember the first time I bore my testimony, my voice shook, tears welled up in my eyes, not so much over the feeling of the Spirit as I spoke, but out of sheer fear. Now 34 years later I speak to thousands with strength, conviction and a sure knowledge of the message I share. The more I bear my testimony the stronger it becomes. That’s how it works for every follower of Jesus Christ.

Of testimonies, President David O. McKay, the ninth called prophet in these latter-days, said:

There is nothing which a man can possess in this world, which will bring more comfort, more hope and faith than a testimony of the existence of a Heavenly Father who loves us, or of the reality of Jesus Christ, his Only Begotten Son, that those two heavenly personages appeared to the Prophet Joseph and established the Church of Jesus Christ, and that men are officially authorized to represent Deity.

The most precious thing in the world is a testimony of the truth. … Truth never grows old, and the truth is that God is the source of [the] Priesthood … ; that He lives, that Jesus Christ, the great High Priest, stands at the head of this Church. …

Cherish in your hearts the testimony of truth; make it as solid and as firm and unwavering as the fixed stars in the heavens. May there come into everyone’s heart and into all our homes the true Spirit of Christ, our Redeemer, whose reality, whose inspiring guidance I know to be real. (“Chapter 17: A Testimony of the Truth,” Teachings of Presidents of the Church: David O. McKay, 163)

mormonThere are many things that can be taken away from you, but no one can ever take your testimony of the truth; that Jesus Christ lives and stands at the head of His fully restored church today. You can ignore your testimony, that divine witness which you have received, and it will whither away. You can turn your back on your testimony and walk away from truth. But no one will ever take it away from you. It is a precious gift given to us from God above and we should nurture and strengthen it on a daily basis by living our lives as Jesus Christ would have us live.

We have been promised by prophets of old and modern day that in the sharing of testimonies of truth: that Jesus Christ is divine; that the Book of Mormon is a second witness of Jesus Christ; that Joseph Smith, Jr. was a prophet of God who did see God the Father and God the Son, Jesus Christ, in a sacred grove on that early spring morning of 1820; that we have a living prophet today who speaks with God and guides us through inspiration; that through Jesus Christ is the life and the way to eternity and our reunion with our Father in Heaven and Jesus Christ; that out sins are forgiven us.

Eternal happiness is found through Jesus Christ and Jesus Christ alone. This I of every day of my life, in all I say and do. And in so testifying, my sins are forgiven me if I remain steadfast and sure in my testimony of Jesus Christ. I find this to be a gift of great measure as well.

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