Elder Jeffrey R. Holland: ‘Behold the Lamb’

Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

Notable quotes:

“As for punctuality, a late pass will always be lovingly granted to those blessed mothers who, with children and Cheerios and diaper bags trailing in marvelous disarray, are lucky to have made it to church at all. Furthermore, there will be others who unavoidably find their ox in the mire on a Sabbath morning. However, to this latter group we say an occasional tardiness is understandable, but if the ox is in the mire every Sunday, then we strongly recommend that you sell the ox or fill the mire.”
“We make an apostolic plea for the reduction of clamor in the sanctuary of our buildings. We love to visit with each other, and we should — it is one of the joys of Church attendance — but it ought not be pursued in space specifically dedicated for worship.”
“By commandment, we gather for the most universally received ordinance in the Church. It is in memory of Him who asked if the cup He was about to drink could pass, only to soldier on because He knew that for our sake it could not pass. It will help us if we remember that a symbol of that cup is slowly making its way down the row toward us at the hand of an 11- or 12-year old.”

Summary points:

  • Following Christ’s mortal ministry, “this Purest of all Passover sheep” introduced the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper.
  • The sacrament should be the sacred focal point of the Sunday worship experience.
  • By commandment, Latter-day Saints are to gather for the “most universally received ordinance in the Church.

Talk summary:

By offering a sacrifice to God of a pure, unblemished lamb, the first male of the flock, Adam and his posterity “were expressing their understanding and their dependence upon the atoning sacrifice of Jesus the Anointed One.”

Following Christ’s mortal ministry, “this Purest of all Passover sheep” introduced the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper — “a more personal form of the ordinance that had been introduced just outside of Eden. There would still be an offering, it would still involve a sacrifice, but it would be with symbolism much deeper, much more introspective and personal than the bloodletting of a firstborn lamb.”

“Ye shall offer for a sacrifice unto me a broken heart and a contrite spirit. And whoso cometh unto me with a broken heart and a contrite spirit, him will I baptize with fire and with the Holy Ghost” (3 Nephi 9:19-20).

With the current emphasis on increased gospel learning in the home, “it is crucial for us to remember that we are still commanded to ‘go to the house of prayer and offer up thy sacraments upon my holy day’ ” (Doctrine and Covenants 59:9).

The sacrament should be the sacred focal point of Latter-day Saints’ Sunday worship experience. “We are to remember in as personal a way as possible that Christ died from a heart broken by shouldering entirely alone the sins and sorrows of the whole human family. Inasmuch as we contributed to that fatal burden, such a moment demands our respect. Thus, we are encouraged to come to our services early and reverently, dressed appropriately for participation in a sacred ordinance — the sacred ordinance.”

In the news:

  • In January 2019, Elder Holland presided at the Urdaneta Philippines Temple groundbreaking.
  • Elder Holland spoke about the need for a “Mormon Studies” name change at the Maxwell Institute at Brigham Young University. He also talked about the adjustments and changes Church headquarters had been going through.
  • Elder Holland visited Oxford, England, in November 2018. While there, he spoke frankly about pain from his own life about some who opposed his mission, a depressing moment as a young father worried about finances, a relative who is unable to conceive and the tears he has shed over seemingly unanswered prayers.
  • During an Anglican Christmas service, Elder Holland shared the story of his father’s death around Christmastime in 1976. That same story inspired Deseret News reporter Tad Walch, whose father died around Christmastime 24 years later. Walch’s parents received a visit from Elder Holland shortly beforehand that has made a lasting impact on their family.
  • For his October 2018 general conference address, Elder Holland talked about the reconciliation of oneself with God and with each other.

About the speaker:

Recently on social:

  • In a November 2018 post, Elder Holland shared his thoughts about the “Come, Follow Me” curriculum and how individuals need to give themselves spiritual nourishment just as much as physical nourishment.
View this post on Instagram

I want you young people to know that the leaders of the Church are thinking about you as we embark on the shift to home-centered, Church-supported gospel learning. I testify to you that if we are willing, God will lead us to places we’ve never dreamed we could go—as lofty as our dreams might already be. Now I invite you to consider some reasons why learning in the home is so important for you. . 1. The home is where we spend most of our time—certainly more time than we spend at church. We wouldn’t expect our physical bodies to survive long on one meal a week—even if it is a very good meal. Similarly, if a one-hour Church class, even an excellent Church class, is the main setting for our “feasting upon the word of Christ,” then we are in danger of spiritual malnourishment. . 2. The home is both classroom and lab, where learning and living the gospel are so seamlessly combined that they are almost indistinguishable. This living laboratory experience simply can’t be re-created in the classroom alone. . 3. Perhaps most important, the home is—or can be—an echo of heaven, a reminder of the eternal goal we came here to pursue. . Dear young friends, I am honored to walk with you toward the glorious future our Father in Heaven has in store for us. It is our great desire that the Lord will lift us to new heights of spiritual growth through new ways of learning and living the gospel.

A post shared by Jeffrey R. Holland (@jeffreyrholland) on

  • Elder Holland encouraged others on Twitter to be firm and steadfast in their faith.