I am an active member of the restored Church of Jesus Christ (the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints). I believe the fullness of the Everlasting Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the Earth in these last days. The Lord’s true church has been restored and established on the earth today, and it is led by living, ordained Apostles and Prophets who act under the direction of the Resurrected and Living Savior of the World, the Lord Jesus Christ himself (the very Jehovah of the Old Testament). This is the Kingdom of God on the Earth led by the Savior of the World, Jesus Christ our Redeemer.
Many years ago, in an adult Sunday School class, our instructor looked at me and asked directly: “Brother Edgar. have you ever doubted your testimony of Jesus Christ; and, what were your feelings at that time?” I did not answer immediately but thought seriously about the questions. Then I said, “I honestly don’t recall ever doubting my testimony of Jesus Christ.” I have always known that Jesus is the Son of God. He is our Savior and Redeemer. I believed this when I was a child; and, as an adult, I have never doubted it.
Jesus the Christ is literally the beloved Son of God the Eternal Father. They are separate and distinct individuals, and yet they are united in one purpose, “…to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.” (The Pearl of Great Price, Moses 1:39) Jesus Christ is the Great Jehovah of the Old Testament and He is Jesus Christ of the New Testament. He was with our Heavenly Father in our pre-earth existence. Under the direction of the Father, Jehovah was the Creator and Organizer of Heaven and Earth and all things in them. He is the only begotten Son of the Father in the flesh (born of a mortal mother). Jesus Christ is the Holy Messiah, the Holy and Chosen One of Israel. It is my testimony that Jesus Christ is like His Father in every way. They are Immortal and Glorified beings. Christ is the beloved son of God the Father. And, He has atoned for the sins and transgression of all mankind. He is our Savior and Redeemer.
I also believe all men and women on earth (regardless of their race or the color of their skin) are spiritually begotten children of our loving Heavenly Father. And, our Spirits are our true identity (John 6:63). God is the Father of our spirits. We are all His children. He truly is our Heavenly Father. We lived with Him (as intelligent spirits) before our birth here on earth. We loved Him, and He loves us. “…the Great Parent of the universe looks upon the whole of the human family with a fatherly care and parental regard” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, Salt Lake City: 2007, 404). And, as His children, we all have the potential to someday be like Him.
However, in this life, because of the Fall of Adam and our personal transgressions, and because God the Father is a God of Justice, mankind is necessarily separated from His presence. But, because He is also a God of Mercy, He has provided a way (His Plan) for us to return to Him. According to the Father’s Great Plan of Salvation, Jesus Christ Himself (God’s beloved and sinless Son) atoned for all our sins and Adam’s transgression. He (Christ) paid the ransom demands of justice and made it possible for each of us to be redeemed from the Fall. He took upon Himself the sins of all mankind; He suffered and atoned for our sins (if we would sincerely repent and come unto Him); after which, He was crucified and died on the cross. I also believe that on the third day following His crucifixion, Jesus Christ overcame death through His resurrection and ascension back into the presence of God the Father.
Because of Jesus Christ, our sins can be forgiven, we will be resurrected, and we will stand before Him to be judged. Jesus Christ is the Great Judge. He has paid the price of our sins, and He has redeemed us from the Fall of Adam (we will all be resurrected). Like God the Father, Jesus Christ is also merciful and loving, but He is also a God of justice. So, while His atonement has paid the demands of justice, there is much required of us. In this life, we are all unworthy (to some degree) of His forgiveness and mercy. However, to be redeemed, what He asks of us is that we follow His Doctrine, the “Doctrine of Christ” (The Book of Mormon, 2 Nephi 31:20-21); that is, we exercise Faith in Him, Repent honestly of our sins, be Baptized by an authorized servant of the Lord Jesus Christ, receive the Gift of the Holy Spirit, and continue/endure in a life of righteousness. Essentially, we will be judged according to 1) the desires of our hearts, 2) our obedience in keeping His commandments, 3) our faithfulness in honoring our covenants with Him, and 4) our continuing or “enduring” in good works. This is the essence of “the Gospel Plan of Salvation,” or in other words, “The Great Plan of Happiness.”
Thus, He has made it possible for us (spirit children of God) to be resurrected with glorified bodies and to return to be with our Heavenly Father again.
Finally, please allow me to say something about the Church of Jesus Christ on the earth. Shortly after the early Christian era, and because of wickedness in both the church and the world, the Church of Jesus Christ (including a full understanding of Heavenly Father’s Plan) was taken from the earth …and Divine revelation ceased. What little was left of the Gospel of Jesus Christ was corrupted by false religious leaders and conspiring minds. The earth fell into “the Great Apostasy” when these false leaders corrupted the Doctrine of Christ. This period is referred to in history as “the Dark Ages” …when “the heavens were sealed.” The World remained in this condition for many centuries. However, I testify the fullness of the Everlasting Gospel of Jesus Christ has since been restored to the earth. God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ have opened the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times. Heavenly messengers have returned to the earth and restored Holy Priesthood authority/powers and blessings, and our Heavenly Father’s Gospel Plan of Salvation has been revealed (again). I believe Jesus Christ Himself sits at the head of His Church (the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints), and He is alive and well. He is our Creator, our Savior, our Redeemer, and the Son of God. He loves all of God’s children, and because of His Sacrifice and Obedience to God, He has made it possible for us to be completely forgiven of our sins and redeemed from the Fall of Adam. Thus, He has provided a way (if we are willing) for each of us to ultimately return and live with God again. “For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.” (The Pearl of Great Price, Moses 1:39)
Of these things I am certain, and I testify they are true. I share them with all who will read this. And, I do it with full confidence and all sincerity. I know for myself they are true; and, I know you too can receive this same assurance from the Holy Spirit.
“And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.” (The Book of Mormon, Moroni 10:4-5)
My name is Scott A. Edgar. I am your fellow servant in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and a Disciple of Jesus Christ. If you would like to learn more, please visit our Come Unto Christ web page.
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