Thursday, April 18, 2013

General Conference Talks

While serving, I had the opportunity to read more Liahonas and Ensigns than I'll probably ever get to read again.  I loved reading the counsel from modern day prophets and apostles.  Below are a few of the talks that I found helpful while I was a missionary.  While some of these teachings might be too complex for those you teach, they will strengthen your own testimony and deepen your understanding.

Elder Dallin H. Oaks - "Fundamental Premises of Our Faith"

Elder Oaks gave this talk as a lecture at the Harvard Law School, and a shortened version of it appeared in the January 2011 Ensign and Liahona.  I read the shortened version while serving in St. Lucia, and I liked it so much that I went on LDS.org on a preparation day and printed the full article.

In this talk, Elder Oaks outlines 3 "clusters of truths" that he chooses as being "fundamental to our faith."  He denotes them as 1) the nature of the Godhead, 2) the purpose of life, and 3) the sources of truth, and how we can know them.  One of my favorite parts of his talk is when he talks about the after-life: "eternal life is family life with a loving Father in Heaven and with our progenitors and our posterity."

The Ensign (short) version can be found here: http://www.lds.org/ensign/2011/01/fundamental-to-our-faith?lang=eng

The full lecture/article can be found here: http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/article/fundamental-premises-of-our-faith-talk-given-by-elder-dallin-h-oaks-at-harvard-law-school  I highly recommend you read the full lecture.

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland - "The Only True God and Jesus Christ Whom He Hath Sent"

Towards the beginning of his October 2007 General Conference talk, Elder Holland addresses two doctrinal points: our view of the Godhead and our belief in the principle of continuing revelation leading to an open scriptural canon."  He addresses the first point in this talk, outlining that members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are Christians.  Elder Holland skillfully explains the true nature of Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.  He further explains how God has a body.  In addition, he also uses historical evidence to explain how the knowledge of God's true nature was lost over time, and how it has been brought back.


Read the full talk here: http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2007/10/the-only-true-god-and-jesus-christ-whom-he-hath-sent?lang=eng

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland - "My Words...Never Cease"

In his April 2008 General Conference talk, Elder Holland addresses "the other major doctrine which characterizes our faith but which causes concern to some, namely the bold assertion that God continues to speak His word and reveal His truth, revelations which mandate an open canon of scripture," which he mentioned in his October 2007 talk.  He outlines that "Continuing revelation does not demean or discredit existing revelation."  I love how Elder Holland explains that God reveals His truth, as He did in the past, in the present, and as He will continue to do.  Elder Holland also uses historical examples, in addition to scriptures.

Read the full talk here: http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2008/04/my-words-never-cease?lang=eng

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