Disclaimers | Links | Search | Contact
Son of God
Anointed One
Teacher and Exemplar
Suffering Savior
Risen Lord
Friend and Companion
The Second Coming
Christ as Female
Christ as Cosmic Force
The Sacrament
The Church of Christ
One in Christ

One in Christ

Alhough the church are one in Christ by virtue of their baptism (Gal. 3:27-28), making that unity a visible reality is an ongoing challenge. The baptized are called to do away with contention (3 Ne. 11:28-30), to be agreed in the things they pray for (D&C 27:18), and to do all things by common consent (D&C 26:2). However, this unity must be achieved by the knitting together of hearts in love, not by compulsory means (Mosiah 18:21; D&C 121:41-46). Historically, Latter-day Saints have sought unity by advocating faithful acceptance of church leaders' authority. But so much emphasis on leaders' authority leaves the church vulnerable to unrighteous dominion, even idolatry. How to achieve unity while honoring individual freedom of conscience is a difficult dilemma requiring the church to seek continuing guidance from the Spirit.

Being one not only means being united; it also means being equal (D&C 38:25-27). The church today confront inherited inequalities of gender, race, nationality, language, and culture. Economic equality is an additional challenge. In the 19th century, Latter-day Saints emulated early Christian communites whose members held their possessions in common (Acts 2:44-45;
4 Ne. 1:1-3)
. We still accept this demanding ideal today as one of our temple covenants. How can we move closer to the ideal, especially in light of LDS growth in the Third World?

Finally, there is the challenge of cultivating unity with brothers and sisters outside our faith community. In what sense can Latter-day Saints be one with other Christians? With people of other faiths? These, too, are questions for continuing discernment.

Related Topics:
Learning from Others Establishing Zion  

 Awake, Ye Saints of God, Awake!  (Hymns 17, verse 4)

If we are the body of Christ, we are one, and as he has loved us, so let us love one another.
"Extracts of Letters from the Elders Abroad," Evening and Morning Star, February 1833, 70

B. H. Roberts: We Latter-day Saints do not want to contract our feelings, our sympathies, our opinions of the truth to the narrow limits of our own church fellowship; but we must recognize that God does things on a broad scale, and that He is directing, and that He is influencing, by His Spirit, His children; and they will become more and more susceptible to the influence of the Gospel. I hope that . . . the Church of Christ shall be enlarged in her sympathies until we will stand locked fast in fellowship for righteousness with all the righteous men in all the world.
Conference Report, April 1908, 112

James E. Talmage: Honesty of purpose, integrity of soul, individual purity, freedom of conscience, willingness to do good to all men even enemies, pure benevolence—these are some of the fruits by which the religion of Christ may be known, far exceeding in importance and value the promulgation of dogmas and the enunciation of theories.
Articles of Faith (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1981), 389

Theodore M. Burton: In our generation the Savior gave us a statement so often used by the late President J. Reuben Clark, Jr.: ". . . I say unto you, be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine." (D&C 38:27.) This doctrine is built upon true love, even the love of Christ, and is a most important principle of the gospel. Without the love of one man for another, how can justice and real freedom ever be achieved?
Conference Report, October 1969, 33

Chieko N. Okazaki: Remember that the gospel is pointing us toward a time when we can see others—all others—truly as God sees us, as one blood, one flesh, brothers and sisters. God is literally the father of us all. In Christ the divisions and the divisiveness—between men and women, between different national groups, between different economic circumstances—are done away with, and all are alike unto him. Even those who don't know him are known and loved by him.

Disciples (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1998), 154-55

This website is an independent effort to discern the Spirit's voice in LDS teaching. The site is not sponsored by the LDS Church. Quotations from the teachings of any individual should not be taken to imply that the individual does or would endorse this website or other statements made here.