President Faust: `Spirit of Christ should permeate all we do'

Taking as his text the 13th Article of Faith, President James E. Faust, second counselor in the First Presidency, pled for greater consistency between beliefs and actions.

Speaking at the priesthood session Saturday evening, President Faust asked: "Brethren, does the Spirit of Christ that we have taken upon ourselves spill over into our behavior in the work force?"He then quoted Brigham Young as saying: "If we live our religion and are worthy of the name of Latter-day Saints, we are just the men that . . . business can be entrusted to with perfect safety; if it can not it will prove that we do not live our religion."

Elaborating, President Faust said: "What President Young urged of the holders of the priesthood in his day is just as important in our day. The Spirit of Christ should permeate all we do, whether at work, at school or at home."

He mentioned President Spencer W. Kimball's teaching to "make one-time decisions to do right." He then spoke of some young LDS men who, during World War II, lowered their standards little by little until they had acquired habits of breaking the Word of Wisdom that enslaved them for the rest of their lives.

Priesthood holders should be men of impeccable character, President Faust declared, citing as an example the integrity of Abraham as recounted in the Old Testament.

Honesty is a very important part of character, he said, and begins when one is young. "Some youths fail to honor debts to their parents. `May I borrow $5 for the show?" That contains an implied promise to repay the debt, but the promise is made so casually that it is forgotten as it is spoken."

President Faust warned against the misuse of credit.

"Contemporary society rushes headlong to accumulate the material goods of this world," he said. "This leads many to think they can alter the law of the harvest, reaping rewards without paying the price of honest toil and effort. Wishing to prosper immediately, they speculate in high-risk financial schemes that promote instant wealth. This all too frequently results in economic reverses, sometimes even financial ruin."

Church members, particularly priesthood holders, believe in being chaste, President Faust said, adding that there is no double standard for cleanliness for men and women in the Church.

"If husband and wife will remain pure and chaste, completely devoted to each other during the storms and sunshine of life, their love for one another will deepen into something of supernal fulfillment," he counseled.

In accordance with the 13th Article of Faith provision of being benevolent and doing good works, President Faust said missionaries have done good works since the beginning of the Church.

He added that being a missionary is a continuing responsibility. "Returned missionaries need to be exemplary in living the principles which they taught to others in the mission field," President Faust said. He quoted President Kimball as asking returned missionaries not to abandon in appearance, principle or habit the experiences of the mission field.

Speaking of the admonition of Paul which includes the "hope to be able to endure all things," President Faust cited the example of the late Elder Clinton Cutler of the Seventy. His example, President Faust said, showed that faith, hope and perseverance help our Father in Heaven to strenthen us and enhance our abilities and opportunities, however ordinary they may be."

"Members of the Church are to seek after loveliness," President Faust continued. "We do not seek a veneer painted on by a worldly brush, but the pure, innate beauty that God has planted in our souls. We should seek after those things that endow higher thoughts and finer impulses."

Using phrasing style from the 13th Article of Faith, President Faust noted: "Indeed we may say with President Brigham Young that we hope `to be gentle and kind, modest and truthful, to be full of faith and integrity . . . [for] goodness sheds a halo of loveliness around every person who possesses it, making their countenances beam with light, and their society desirable because of its excellency."

Church members have endured many things and hope to be able to endure all things, President Faust said. "How will we endure all things? The answer is amazingly simple. We shall do so by faith, by unity and by following the prophets of God. It has been so in the past; it will be so in the future."

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