Song: He is Risen
Our Savior lived again. The most glorious, comforting, and reassuring of all events of human history had taken place—the victory over death. The pain and agony of Gethsemane and Calvary had been wiped away. The salvation of mankind had been secured…I have read—and I believe—the testimonies of those who experienced the grief of Christ’s Crucifixion and the joy of His Resurrection…My beloved brothers and sisters, in our hour of deepest sorrow, we can receive profound peace from the words of the angel that first Easter morning: “He is not here: for he is risen.”
- Pres. Monson, He Is Risen!
Is there a purpose in such a temporary existence? Some say there is not. The great question of Job haunts us all: “If a man die, shall he live again?” Of course he will! The answer is found in the doctrine of eternal life. It is the gospel of Jesus Christ, the good news, the glad tidings. Even those who don’t think they will live again or who don’t want to live again will nevertheless arise from the grave and live again. There is nothing they can do to stop it, since life is eternal…Immortality or the resurrection will happen to us all. It is an unearned benefit made possible through the grace or free gift of Christ.
Song: I Will Walk with Jesus
I experienced the joy of coming closer to the Savior and of His coming closer to me most often through simple acts of obedience to the commandments…I knew I could go back again to have the Holy Ghost let me feel what two disciples of the risen Lord had felt when He accepted their invitation to come into their home and to abide with them...
Every covenant servant of His within His kingdom on earth and in the spirit world will receive His guidance by the Spirit as they bless and serve others for Him. And they will feel His love and find joy in being drawn closer to Him.
- Pres. Henry B. Eyring, “Come Unto Me”
The possibility that a mortal who has died will be brought forth and live again in a resurrected body has awakened hope and stirred controversy through much of recorded history…Resurrection is central to what the prophets have called “the great and eternal plan of deliverance from death”.
In our eternal journey, the resurrection is the mighty milepost that signifies the end of mortality and the beginning of immortality...We also know, from modern revelation, that without the reuniting of our spirits and our bodies in the resurrection we could not receive a “fulness of joy”.
-Pres. Dallin H. Oaks, Resurrection
Song: God's Love
From the beginning of time, prophets have known that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, of His mortal mission, and of His Atonement for all mankind. Sacred records give the prophecies of thousands of years
...Those who believed on the words of the prophets recognized the Savior throughout His life and ministry and were blessed to follow Him. But sometimes the faith of even the most devoted followers was tested...I have known many good and generous people who adhere to Christian values. However, some lack faith that He lives, that He is the Savior of the world, and that His Church has been restored to the earth.
- Robert D. Hales, Finding Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ
As we study the scriptures, we notice that the Savior ministered to people according to their specific needs…To follow the Savior’s example, each one of us must look around and reach out to the sheep who are facing the same circumstances and lift them up and encourage them to proceed on the journey towards eternal life. This need today is as great as or perhaps even greater than when the Savior walked on this earth. As shepherds we must understand that we should nurture each one of our sheep to bring them to Christ, which is the purpose of all we do in this Church.
- Ulisses Soares, “Feed My Sheep”
There is no seeking for office, no jockeying for position, no campaigning to promote one’s virtues. Contrast the Lord’s way with the way of the world. The Lord’s way is quiet, it is a way of peace, it is without fanfare or monetary costs. It is without egotism or vanity or ambition. Under the Lord’s plan, those who have responsibility to select officers are governed by one overriding question: “Whom would the Lord have?” There is quiet and thoughtful deliberation. And there is much of prayer to receive the confirmation of the Holy Spirit that the choice is correct.
- President Hinckley, God Is at the Helm
Many outside the Church have received revelation from the Holy Ghost, convincing them of the truth of the gospel…Those possessing the gift of the Holy Ghost can come to a greater light and testimony. The Holy Ghost bears witness of the truth and impresses upon the soul the reality of God the Father and the son Jesus Christ so deeply that no earthly power or authority can separate him from that knowledge.
- James E. Faust, The Gift of the Holy Ghost—A Sure Compass
The Lord’s followers were one in purpose, in love, and in works. They knew who they were, they knew what they had to do, and they did it with love for God and for each other. They were part of a magnificent kaleidoscope moving forward with one accord. Some of the blessings they received were that they were filled with the Holy Ghost, miracles took place among them, the Church grew, there was no contention among the people, and the Lord blessed them in all things…Miracles happen when the children of God work together guided by the Spirit to reach out to others in need.
- Reyna I. Aburto, With One Accord
As we act in accordance with the truths of His gospel, we are blessed with the spiritual capacity to press forward through the challenges of mortality while focusing on the joys the Savior offers to us…our covenants and ordinances point us to and help us always remember our connection with the Lord Jesus Christ as we progress along the covenant path.
- David A. Bednar, But We Heeded Them Not
I have a firm testimony that this restored Church is led by our Savior, Jesus Christ...significant spiritual guidance most often comes when we are trying to bless others in fulfilling our responsibilities…I assure you that revelatory guidance can be received by each of us as we humbly labor in the Lord’s vineyard. Most of our guidance comes from the Holy Ghost.
There will never be honesty in the business world, in the schools, in the home, or anyplace else until there is honesty in the heart… Honesty is the basis of a true Christian life... As Latter-day Saints we have a sacred obligation to not only teach the principles of honesty, but also to live them...Honesty should be among the most fundamental values that govern our everyday living.
- Richard C. Edgely, Three Towels and a 25-Cent Newspaper
True followers of the Savior should be prepared to lay down their lives, and some have been privileged to do so…For most of us, however, what is required is not to die for the Church but to live for it. For many, living a Christlike life every day may be even more difficult than laying down one’s life… Many think that the price of discipleship is too costly and too burdensome. For some, it involves giving up too much. But the cross is not as heavy as it appears to be. Through obedience we acquire much greater strength to carry it.
- James E. Faust, Discipleship
We follow the Savior by entering the waters of baptism and receiving a remission of our sins, by receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and allowing that influence to inspire, instruct, guide, and comfort us...In contrast, when we cling to our sins, our pleasures, and sometimes even our perceived obligations; resist the influence of the Holy Ghost; and put aside the words of the prophets; we then stand at the shore of our own Galilee, nets tightly entangling us. We find ourselves unable to leave them behind and follow the living Christ.
- Joseph B. Wirthlin, “Follow Me”
True worship begins when our hearts are right before the Father and the Son. What is our heart condition today? ...The result of sacrificing our heart, or our will, to the Lord is that we receive the spiritual guidance we need...I have struggled to banish the mortal desire to have things my way, eventually realizing that my way is oh so lacking, limited, and inferior to the way of Jesus Christ...Can we love Jesus Christ and His way more than we love ourselves and our own agenda?
- Neill F. Marriott, Yielding Our Hearts to God
The question asked by th[e] Ethiopian man is a reminder of the divine mandate we all have to seek to learn and to teach one another the gospel of Jesus Christ...we are sometimes like the Ethiopian—we need the help of a faithful and inspired teacher; and we are sometimes like Philip—we need to teach and strengthen others in their conversion…when we earnestly, heartily, firmly, and sincerely seek to learn the gospel of Jesus Christ and teach it to one another with real purpose and under the influence of the Spirit, these teachings may transform hearts and inspire a desire to live according to the truths of God.
- Ulisses Soares, How Can I Understand?
The scriptural word for change is repentance…The Lord’s condition for change is humility…If we humble ourselves and have faith in Jesus Christ, then His grace will enable us to change. In other words, He will empower us to change...The scriptures are full of examples of men and women who changed. Saul, a Pharisee and active persecutor of the early Christian church, became Paul, an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ…our divine destiny and purpose is ultimately to become like our Heavenly Father and Savior, Jesus Christ.
- Kevin S. Hamilton, “Then Will I Make Weak Things Become Strong”
The Savior saw more in those humble fishermen whom He called to follow Him than they initially saw in themselves; He saw a vision of who they could become....With that vision these faithful and devoted disciples were able to do hard things as they traveled to preach the gospel and establish the Church after the Savior had departed...While persecuting the early Saints, the Apostle Paul was converted on the road to Damascus and then acted by teaching and testifying of Christ…[It is] our responsibility to be God’s hands in blessing His children here on earth. The fulfillment of this charge has been heartwarming as members of the Church have acted upon his vision.
- O. Vincent Haleck, Having the Vision to Do
A promise has been made to everyone who becomes a member of the Church: “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God.”… Jesus has asked us to observe the law of perfect love, which is a universal and unconditional gift…In this Church there are no strangers and no outcasts. There are only brothers and sisters…no one is a stranger to our Heavenly Father. There is no one whose soul is not precious to Him.
- Gérald Caussé, Ye Are No More Strangers
What does it mean to be a disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ? A disciple is one who has been baptized and is willing to take upon him or her the name of the Savior and follow Him. A disciple strives to become as He is by keeping His commandments in mortality, much the same as an apprentice seeks to become like his or her master...Disciples live so that the characteristics of Christ are woven into the fiber of their beings, as into a spiritual tapestry…
- Robert D. Hales, Becoming a Disciple of Our Lord Jesus Christ
The gradual increase of light radiating from the rising sun is like receiving a message from God “line upon line, precept upon precept”. Most frequently, revelation comes in small increments over time and is granted according to our desire, worthiness, and preparation. Such communications from Heavenly Father gradually and gently “distil upon [our souls] as the dews from heaven”. ... we many times receive revelation without recognizing precisely how or when we are receiving revelation.
David A. Bednar, The Spirit of Revelation
The name the Savior has given to His Church tells us exactly who we are and what we believe. We believe that Jesus Christ is the Savior and the Redeemer of the world. He atoned for all who would repent of their sins, and He broke the bands of death and provided the resurrection from the dead. We follow Jesus Christ…The Saints in New Testament times were called Christians because they professed a belief in Jesus Chris…Surely it would be easier for [others] to understand that we believe in and follow the Savior if we referred to ourselves as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
M. Russell Ballard, The Importance of a Name
During the night when Peter was sleeping between two soldiers and was bound with two chains, an angel of the Lord “came upon him” and “raised him up,” and “his chains fell off from his hands.”...He went to the home where members of the Church were gathered together praying for him...Peter...knocked and waited. When they finally came to him, “they were astonished”.
These people had been continually praying for a miracle to occur, but when the Lord answered their prayers, they were amazed. They were surprised at the Lord’s goodness in His miraculous response. Do we recognize the fulfilling of promises in our lives?
- Susan W. Tanner, All Things Shall Work Together for Your Good
During the early days of the Church, in the meridian of time, the gospel was taken to the house of Israel only; then revelation came to Peter, the senior Apostle, that the time had come to take the gospel beyond Israel and unto the Gentiles... An example of the expansion of the Church at that time was the conversion of Paul, who became the great Apostle to the Gentiles…the direction of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles…to take the gospel to the world is the same as that of the Apostles of old.
- John B. Dickson, The Gospel to All the World
Acts 16:9-13 (Paul is directed in a vision to preach in Macedonia)
We need the help of every member, and every member can help, since there are many tasks to perform as we share the restored gospel with every nation, kindred, tongue, and people…we can all pray for desire to help with this vital part of the work of salvation. All efforts begin with desire...faithful members will always have the Savior’s Spirit to be with them to guide them as they seek to participate in the great work of sharing the restored gospel of Jesus Christ...we can pray for inspiration on what we can do in our individual circumstances to share the gospel with others.
- President Oaks, Sharing the Restored Gospel
Acts 16:14-24 (Lydia)
When we agree to believe in the truth and to follow it, and when we make an effort to become true disciples of Jesus Christ, we do not receive a certificate with a guarantee that we will not make mistakes, that we will not be tempted to walk away from the truth, that we will not be criticized, or even that we will not experience afflictions...remember the Savior’s example. During His ministry, He likewise faced difficulty, including criticism, persecution, and ultimately the bitter cup of His atoning sacrifice. Yet in all circumstances He sought to do the will of His Father and give glory to Him.
- Denelson Silva, Courage to Proclaim the Truth
Acts 16:25-34 (Paul and Silas convert the jailor)
We have the sacred responsibility to share the power and peace of Jesus Christ with all who will listen and who will let God prevail in their lives…All missionaries teach and testify of the Savior. The spiritual darkness in the world makes the light of Jesus Christ needed more than ever. Everyone deserves the chance to know about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Every person deserves to know where they can find the hope and peace that “[pass] all understanding.”
- President Nelson, Preaching the Gospel of Peace
Acts 17:10-12 (Paul and Silas preach in Berea)
One of the most sacred purposes for which the scriptures were written was to make it possible for all to know Christ. The scriptures teach and testify of Jesus Christ. They teach us much that we need to know and to do to return to the presence of the Savior. John was specific in giving the purpose of the scriptures when he said: “But these [things] are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.”
- L. Lionel Kendrick, Search the Scriptures
Acts 17:22-29 (Paul preaches, We are the offspring of God)
All human beings—male and female—are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny...In the premortal realm, spirit sons and daughters knew and worshipped God as their Eternal Father and accepted His plan by which His children could obtain a physical body and gain earthly experience to progress toward perfection and ultimately realize their divine destiny as heirs of eternal life.
Acts 18:5-11 (Being rejected by the Jews, Paul turns to the Gentiles)
Members of the early Church, from the newest to the most seasoned, took part in the Savior’s great commission, sharing the good news of the gospel with those they met and knew. The determination to share their testimony of Jesus Christ helped His newly established Church grow expansively. We too, as Christ’s disciples, are invited to heed His commission today…We all share things with others. We do it often. We share what movies and food we like, funny things we see, places we visit, art we appreciate, quotes we’re inspired by. How might we simply add to the list of things we already share what we love about the gospel of Jesus Christ?
- Gary E. Stevenson, Love, Share, Invite