Messages of inspiration from President Hinckley

Excerpts from recent addresses by President Gordon B. Hinckley.


Who can deny the truth of the Book of Mormon? It is here to handle. The evidence for its truth lies in its reading, its prayerful reading. Anybody, according to Moroni, can gain a knowledge of the truth, and millions have done so, through the reading of this book. You can handle it, you can lift it, you can open it, you can search its words. There have been scores of explanations trying to find some other origin of the book. Every one has failed, while the Book of Mormon goes on and on and on. - From missionary meeting, Rochester, N.Y., July 12, 1996


We are a covenant people and that is a very serious matter. When this work was restored and the Lord set forth the purposes for that restoration, He said that one reason for the restoration was that His everlasting covenant might be established, or reestablished. That covenant originally was made between Abraham and Jehovah when the mighty Jehovah made a great and solemn promise to Abraham. There was established then a relationship that was of eternal consequence in the lives of all who would enter into it.

Now, in this dispensation, that everlasting covenant has been reaffirmed. We, in effect, made that covenant when we were baptized. We became a part of His divine family, as it were. All of God's children are of His family, but in a particular way and a wonderful way there is a special relationship between God and the children of His covenant. And when we came into the Church, whether by lineage or whether by adoption, we became a part of a covenant people. Each time we partake of the sacrament, not only do we do it in remembrance of the sacrifice of the Son of God, who gave His life for each of us, but there is an added element that we take upon ourselves the name of Jesus Christ and pledge ourselves to keep His commandments and He pledges with us that He will bless us with His Holy Spirit. We are a covenant people, and great are the obligations which go with that covenant. - From member fireside, first session, Copenhagen, Denmark, June 14, 1996


Education is the key that unlocks opportunity. I hope, my dear young friends, that you will not cut short your education for some frivolous reason. It is so very, very important to you, and it is important to the Church because you will make a contribution to society in terms of your capacity and ability to do so. The Church will be honored and respected the more because of the way in which you deport yourselves, having educated your minds and your hands and qualified yourselves for the work of the world.- From youth meeting, Kansas City, Mo., July 14, 1996


This is where the First Vision occurred. This is the pivotal thing of our story. Every claim we make concerning divine authority, every truth that we offer concerning the validity of this work, all find their roots in the First Vision of the boy prophet. This was the great curtain-raiser on the dispensation of the fulness of times, when God promised that He would restore all the power, the gifts, the blessings, of all previous dispensations in one great summing up, as it were, and we are right here where it occurred. And, I repeat, my beloved brethren and sisters, that becomes the hinge pin on which this whole cause turns. If the First Vision was true, if it actually happened, then the Book of Mormon is true. Then we have the priesthood. Then we have the Church organization and all of the other keys and blessings of authority which we say we have. Now, it is just that simple. Everything, I submit, turns on the reality of that first vision. - From missionary meeting, Rochester, N.Y., July 12, 1996


This afternoon we went to the Church of the Apostles where is found the original Christus statue by Thorvaldsen. And then on either side of that beautiful chapel are the carved figures of the Apostles. Peter, with the keys in his hand. I don't think the people who have responsibility for that church understand the significance of those keys, but for us they are real, they are genuine. The Lord said to His apostles, "And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." (Matt. 16:19.) Those are the eternal keys of the priesthood which have been restored under the hands of Peter, James, and John, and also Moses, Elias, and Elijah. They are the keys of the fulness of the priesthood as the Lord uses the word in the 124th section of the Doctrine and Covenants - those keys which are exercised in the House of the Lord. - From missionary meeting, Copenhagen, Denmark, June 14, 1996


You young men, fall in love with Latter-day Saint girls. And you young women, fall in love with Latter-day Saint boys. You will be happier if you do so. You will be happier because you will understand one another and appreciate one another's values, and you will be grateful all of your days if you will do that. - From Cebu City Philippines member fireside, May 31, 1996


I hope that every young man has a mission on his list of goals. I hope that you will not let anything get in the way of that. The Lord needs you. He needs your help. He needs your strength. He needs your voice. We are all the Lord has to do His work and we must work at it and work together to accomplish His divine purposes. - From youth meeting, Kansas City, Mo., July 14, 1996


My brethren and sisters, you have in your veins, either by descent or adoption, the blood of heroes. I don't hesitate to say that. I know it is so. How thankful I am for those who have gone before. How thankful I am that they did it with enthusiasm and with trust in God, and they did it with a system. It was not a rag-tail kind of exodus from Illinois into Iowa. It was not a disorganized movement from here west. There was organization which was strictly observed and which led to order in the camps. - From devotional, Grand Encampment, Council Bluffs, Iowa, July 13, 1996.


I believe that one of the root causes of the terrible social illnesses that are running rampant among us is the almost total secularizing of our public attitudes. People who carry in their hearts a strong conviction concerning the living reality of the Almighty and of accountability to Him for what we do with our lives and our society, are far less likely to become enmeshed in those problems which inevitably weaken our society. - From Provo City Community Centennial Service, Aug. 4, 1996

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