To be a disciple of Christ means to accept Christ as teacher or spiritual
guide—to walk in his way. Christ's teachings and example are available
to us through the scriptures: in the accounts of Jesus' ministry given
in the New Testament and the Book of Mormon as well as in the latter-day
revelations given in Christ's voice. Most importantly, Christ teaches
us through the gift of the Holy Ghost, or Comforter, whom Christ sends
to teach his disciples when he cannot be physically present with them
(John 14:25-26; 2 Ne. 32:3, 5).
Latter-day Saints are charged to be the kind of person that Jesus is,
to follow his example, and to do the works that we have seen him do (3
Ne. 18:16; 27:21, 27). Jesus' ministry was to heal and to bless
(1 Ne. 11:31; Mosiah 3:5-6; 3 Ne. 17). He went
about doing good (Acts 10:38). He fed hungry
people, brought comfort to people in mourning, denounced injustice and
hypocrisy, and built up inclusive communities that cut across social barriers.
LDS teachers have summarized Christian discipleship as integrity, service,
and compassion. Jesus himself summarizes his way as love of God and neighbor
(Matt. 22:37-40). Love is the defining characteristic
of a true follower of Christ. We are therefore exhorted to pray with all
the energy of our hearts that God will fill us with Christ-like love (Moro.
7:48; John 13:34-35).
| Lord, I Would Follow Thee (Hymns
| Love One Another (Hymns
|Orson F. Whitney: We
have only to compare our lives, characters and dispositions with those
of our Savior. He is our exemplar. Until we become pure in heart as
He is, willing to give glory to God, and to love our fellow men, and
to cease to backbite one another, cease to tear down, and learn to
build up, and comfort and bless and benefit the human race. Until
we do these things we have a labor before us that we must perform,
a journey that we must accomplish.
|Sermon, June 20, 1886, in
(Burbank, CA and Woodland Hills, UT:
B.H.S. Publishing, 1987-1992), vol. 1
|Hugh B. Brown: Jesus
was concerned with individuals and social institutions, with human
and spiritual values, with the more abundant life, and with a reconstructed
social order. A new way of life for men meant more to him than ancient
laws and authoritative precedents.
|The Eternal Quest
(Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1956), 121
|Howard W. Hunter: The
touchstone of compassion is a measure of our discipleship; it is a
measure of our love for God and for one another.
Touchstone,” Ensign, November 1986, 34
|Lowell L. Bennion: What
does it mean to be a disciple of [Christ]? . . . It seems to me that
the moral teachings of Christ might be summarized under two great
ideas. The first is integrity and the second is love.
of Lowell L. Bennion, ed. Eugene England (Salt Lake City: Deseret
Book, 1988), 259
|Gordon B. Hinckley: I
would that the healing power of Christ might spread over the earth
and be diffused through our society and into our homes, that it might
cure men's hearts of the evil and adverse elements of greed and hate
and conflict. I believe it could happen. I believe it must happen.
. . . As members of the Church of Jesus Christ, ours is a ministry
of healing, with a duty to bind the wounds and ease the pain of those
Essence of True Religion (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1989),
Alexander B. Morrison:
We show our love for God, our obedience to Him, our willingness
to become a disciple of Christ, as we serve others.
of Zion (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1993), 99