What We Believe
Epitome of Faith
"Wherefore, seek not the things of this world but seek ye first to build up the Kingdom of God, and to establish his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you."
Matthew 6:38 IV
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- We believe in God the Eternal Father, and in His Son Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost, who are one God.
- We believe that through the atonement of Jesus Christ, all may be saved by the grace of God as they are obedient to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.
- We believe the basic principles of the gospel are:
- Faith in God and in the Lord Jesus Christ
- Baptism by immersion for the remission of sins
- Laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost
- The resurrection of the body; that those dead in Christ will rise at the beginning of the Millennium, and the rest will not rise until the thousand years are expired
- The doctrine of eternal judgment which provides that all shall be judged, rewarded or punished, according to the degree of good or unrepented evil they shall have done. All are responsible for their own sins and not for Adam's transgression. Children are without sin until they reach their age of accountability. Having fully understood these principles, we understand the need to go on to perfection.
- We believe the highest and most noble calling is to accept membership and participate fully in the Church of Jesus Christ.
- We believe in the powers and gifts of the everlasting gospel, such as the gift of faith, discerning of spirits, prophecy, revelation, healing, visions, tongues and the interpretation of tongues, wisdom, charity, brotherly love, and others as given in the sacred teachings of Jesus Christ.
- We believe in the priesthood organization that existed in Christ's church, such as prophets, high priests, apostles, bishops, evangelists, elders, seventy, priests, teachers and deacons.
- We believe that men of the priesthood must be called of God as was Aaron and ordained by the laying on of hands of those who have authority, to entitle them to preach the gospel and administer in the ordinances to draw souls back to God.
- We believe that the Bible and other scriptures of the Church contain the Word of God insofar as they are translated and interpreted correctly by the power of the Holy Spirit.
- We believe the Book of Mormon is an additional witness of the divinity of Jesus Christ, contains the fullness of the Gospel, and is a sacred record of many of the ancient peoples of the Americas.
- We believe God by his Spirit will continue to reveal additions to the canon of scripture to mankind until the end of time.
- We believe in the literal gathering of the house of Israel and in the restoration of the Lost Tribes; that the City of Zion will be established upon the land known as the Americas; that Christ will reign personally upon the earth, and that the earth will be renewed and receive Celestial glory.
- We believe that in all matters pertaining to the duty of mankind toward God, and in preparation and fitness for the world to come, the Word of God is decisive. When God directs, mankind should obey.
- We believe marriage between man and woman is a sacred covenant and is ordained of God. When the covenant of marriage is broken by death the survivor is free to remarry. If the covenant is broken by transgression, each repentant party is free to remarry.
- We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our conscience and allow all mankind the same privilege.
- We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all.
- We believe that the precepts of Jesus Christ, when implemented in the daily lives of men and women and incorporated in the laws of the land will make the world a better place.
"And he commandeth all men that they must repent, and be baptized in his name, having perfect faith in the Holy One of Israel, or they can not be saved in the kingdom of God. "
2 Nephi 6:48
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The official Scriptures of the Church are the Inspired Version of the Bible, the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants (up to and including Section 144), and the Restoration Revelations.
The Restoration Revelations, authorized by the 1995 General Assembly, consists of inspired revelations presented to, and accepted by, the General Assemblies of the Church as the mind and will of God. As of April 2003, it contains thirty-six such documents.
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The church of the Restoration was officially "organized" April 6, 1830 with Joseph Smith, Jr., as the President, Prophet, Seer, and Revelator, in accordance with the commandments and revelations received at that time, and also in harmony with the order of the church described in the New Testament.
Church of Jesus Christ
Jesus said, "I will build my church" (Matthew 16:18). The apostle Paul wrote, "Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone" (Ephesians 2:20). A cornerstone bears the name of the structure as a mark of identity. His church was to be "The Church of Jesus Christ" in order to signify whose church it was, hence the main part of the name of the restored church.
Latter Day Saints
"Saints" was the term used in speaking of the members of Christ's church in New Testament times. "Latter-day Saints" is a term identifying members of his church in this last dispensation of time, and is very significant of the fact that there was a restoration, even of the name used in the ancient church.
A Brief Historical Overview
A group of elders began meeting in Independence, Missouri in February 1981 to prayerfully study the scriptures and understand Godís word. Committed to the churchís traditional beliefs, these elders formed what became known as the "Saturday Night Class."
As a result of several dramatic changes in theology, self-image, and beliefs in the Reorganized Church in the 1960's and 1970's, the significance of this class ultimately became apparent to those attending. These changes took the church away from its traditional roots. Many members challenged the liberal theological transformation of the church and some withdrew from it. Thousands began to meet for worship in "independent branches" and a variety of organizations sprang up to help preserve and promote the restored gospel.
In the autumn of 1988, one such group encouraged the men of the Seventy who held similar concerns to assist the saints who had been scattered because of the loss of faith in the leadership of the church. The first meeting of the Seventies took place in January 1989 and several of them agreed to meet on a continuing basis. Some of these Seventies were also members of the Saturday Night Class and the two groups began to coordinate their efforts.
The Saturday Night Class, feeling the direction of God, had begun to study two issues in the Doctrine and Covenants which pertained directly to the ongoing crisis. First, they learned that unrighteous decisions of past World Conferences of the church could be overturned only by returning to the "General Assembly" format of church government (DC 104:11j), unused since the 1830's. See DC 108a. Second, they concluded that because the First Presidency and Quorum of Twelve Apostles had "departed from the authority and teachings brought forth in the restoration of the gospel," responsibility for "setting the church in order" fell to the next leading quorum of church officials, the Quorum of Seventy (DC 122:10; see also 120:3d).
Consequently, the class concluded: if God so directed, the Seventy could act in their role as the legitimate leadership body of the church and call a General Assembly which could set the church in order once again.
The participating Seventy voted unanimously on September 5, 1989 to form an independent "First Quorum of Restoration Seventy." Following a revelation from God, given on September 9, 1989 through Seventy M. Norman Page, the Seventy reaffirmed this plan of action.
The revelation directed them to organize a quorum and ordain new Seventy. It also admonished them not to reorganize the church prematurely, nor without specific direction from God. On October 1, 1989, six of the Seventy formally chartered the new organization known as the First Quorum of Restoration Seventy.
Their meetings were attended by an unusual outpouring of the Holy Spirit and the group began to grow. Family members and other believers in the words of the Seventy began to come together for meetings. On Saturday, December 30, 1989 the Seventy, and the faithful who could, gathered for an ordination service at Levasy, Missouri. In this service they witnessed Pentecostal blessings. It was a point from which they would never turn back.
On December 26, 1990 a second revelation was received by M. Norman Page. The group was commanded to call a General Assembly the following April. It also gave instruction on the wisdom of choosing the name, the Restoration Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. In addition, the revelation counseled the group to "pray for...and show unfeigned love to" those who were opposing their actions.
Information was sent out to many saints and on April 6, 1991, in Independence, the General Assembly opened. During the week the assembly voted to declare the Reorganized Church "out of order" and to recognize the Restoration Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints as its lawful, spiritual successor. Eight apostles were ordained to lead the new organization.
Marcus Juby was named President of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles in 1991 and in April of 1993 the churchís patriarchs unanimously testified that the Lord had revealed to them Jubyís call as the President of the High Priesthood and of the Church, and to serve as Prophet, Seer, Revelator, and Translator. His ordination took place on April 9, 1993. He served as president until his resignation in September 2001.
In April 2002 the First Presidency was set in order by the action of the Body in accordance with church scriptures. High Priests Mark Evans, Woodrow Howell and James Stayton were selected and set apart to lead the church.
In April 2003 High Priest Mark Evans was set apart as President of the High Priesthood during General Conference by the voice of the Body assembled. Counselors and members of the First Presidency are High Priests Woodrow Howell and James Stayton.
Church organization is based on the pattern of the New Testament Church with its various quorums, councils, orders and offices of priesthood. General Conference and General Assembly formats accommodate decisions necessary for the ongoing work of the church.
The official scriptures of the church are the Inspired Version of the Bible, the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants (Sections 1-144), and the Book of Restoration Revelations.
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