When I think of Easter, I picture an empty tomb. But more importantly, I think of the resurrected Savior and Redeemer of the world who rose from the dead and appeared to hundreds of people in Jerusalem, thousands in the Americas, and to untold others of His lost sheep.1 Hymn 199 captures my joy and gratitude for what He did for us: He is risen! He is risen! Tell it out with a joyful voice…2 Every Christian should be filled with that joy and love for the true and living Savior as we share this message of His resurrection and of His breaking the bands of death.3
Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints have the added blessing of telling others about the ongoing Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His Church. We have the privilege of belonging to the “only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth…”.4 The greatest message to share with people on earth today is that the Lord rose from the dead and lives today to lead and guide His Restored Church through His living prophet. Along with the living Apostles, I “declare that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, organized on April 6, 1830, is Christ’s New Testament Church restored. This Church is anchored in the perfect life of its chief cornerstone, Jesus Christ, and in His infinite Atonement and literal Resurrection”.5
Our Church is both solidly true and dynamically alive. There are core truths and principles given by our Savior that will never change, but as mankind grows and environments change, so does the administration of His Church. We are the only true Church because we are built on the true doctrines and principles of a true Savior, for “Behold, he is the word of truth and righteousness.”6 His doctrines and principles do not change, unlike the philosophies of men, which change continually and vary greatly.7 Truth is consistent, and the Lord is “the same yesterday, today, and forever.”8 Applications may change, but doctrines and principles do not. With changing technology and demographics, how the Lord runs His Church may adjust and change over time, but the doctrines and principles, such as faith, repentance, obedience, forgiveness, love, and charity, remain pure and true.
We are the only Living Church because we have a living Savior, a living prophet, living priesthood power and authority, and living ordinances, covenants, and revelation. We have temples where the living performs the work of vicarious baptisms and all other ordinances for their living ancestors who are on the other side of the veil.9 The Church is living because of its missionary work to take the gospel to all of God’s children on both sides of the veil. The Church is living because the restored Priesthood keys and power to bind on earth is also valid for binding in heaven.10
Just as the Lord our Savior is true and living, He leads and guides a true and living Church through a true and living prophet. We become true and living as we abide by the light and knowledge each of us has. We become true and living as we take His name upon us through baptism and confirmation, and by always remembering Him, keeping His commandments, and enduring to the end.11 We become true and living as we worthily partake of the Sacrament every week to have clean hands and a pure heart with His image in our countenance.12 We become true and living through a mighty change of heart that we no more have a “disposition to do evil, but to do good continually.”13
I testify, along with “His duly ordained Apostles – that Jesus is the Living Christ, the immortal Son of God. He is the great King Immanuel, who stands today on the right hand of His Father. He is the light, the life, and the hope of the world.”14 The greatest message to the world is that the Resurrected Savior lives and guides His Restored Church through a true, living prophet. Let us “tell it out with joyful voice.”15
1 1 Corinthians 15:6; 3 Nephi 17:25; 3 Nephi 17:4.
2 Hymns of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1985.
3 1 Corinthians 15:20-22.
4 Doctrine and Covenants 1:30.
5 “The Restoration of the Fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, a Bicentennial Proclamation to the World,” 5 April 2020.
6 Alma 38:9.
7 Colossians 2:8.
8 1 Nephi 10:8.
9 1 Corinthians 15:29.
10 Matthew 16:19.
11 Doctrine and Covenants 20:77 and 2 Nephi 31:16.
12 Alma 5:19.
13 Mosiah 5:2.
14 “The Living Christ, The Testimony of the Apostles,” 1 January 2000.
15 Hymns of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Hymn 199, 1985.