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'Recognize Spirit when it is manifest'

The Lord instructed members that if they are to receive His spirit, they must be obedient to the commandments.

"For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsover is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ."And the Spirit giveth light to every man that cometh into the world; and the Spirit enlighteneth every man through the world, that hearkeneth to the voice of the Spirit.

"And every one that hearkeneth to the voice of the Spirit cometh unto God, even the Father." (D&C 84:45-47.)

Instructing missionaries at the Missionary Training Center June 21, 1988, Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Council of the Twelve explained to missionaries that to teach by the Spirit, they must learn to recognize its influence.

"I know from experience that some seasoned members of the Church do not know when they are receiving a witness of the Spirit. . . .

"Perhaps lifelong members of the Church don't recognize the testimony of the Spirit because they have had it so often they take it for granted. Perhaps they are looking for something startling and different. . . .

"I have heard adult members of the Church claim they do not have a testimony because they have never experienced a `burning in the bosom.' (D&C 9:8.)

"If I thought this scriptural "burning" only referred to caloric heat, I would have to say that I have never had a burning in the bosom either. . . . In this usage, it does not seem to refer to heat but rather to an intensity of feeling.

"For me, the witness of the Holy Ghost is an intense feeling of serenity or well-being."


(ADDITIONAL INFORMATION)

Articles on this page may be used in conjunction with the gospel doctrine courseof study.

Sources: Church History and Modern Revelation, vol. 2, by Joseph Fielding Smith. Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual; Journal of Discourses, vol. 4; and "Teaching by the Spirit," an address by Elder Dallin H. Oaks.

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