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Christ’s Church Restored

By Mormon.org

Christ’s Church Restored

The same church that Jesus Christ established when He lived on the earth has been restored today. The restoration of Jesus Christ’s gospel and His authority is central to the founding of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and distinguishes it from other churches. Whereas reformation churches, also known as Protestant churches, sought to reform the Catholic Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is actually a restoration of Jesus Christ’s original Church that He established while He lived on the earth. Jesus Christ restored His gospel through the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1830. As part of his prophetic work, Joseph Smith received priesthood authority from Jesus. He also translated the Book of Mormon, another testament of Jesus Christ similar to the Bible, which shares many doctrinal truths that can help us understand the gospel and why a restoration of that gospel was necessary.

The Apostasy and the Restoration

  • Prophets foretold the Great Apostasy. In the Old Testament, Amos spoke of the time we now call the Great Apostasy. “Not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord” (Amos 8:11). The Apostle Paul also knew that Jesus would not return to the earth until after such an apostasy had occurred. “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first” (2 Thessalonians 2:3).
  • Prophets foretold the Restoration. The prophet Isaiah knew people would be led astray by false teachings. However, Isaiah also knew that God promised to return essential truths to the earth. “Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men: Therefore, behold, I will proceed to do a marvellous work among this people, even a marvellous work and a wonder” (Isaiah 29:13–14). These words are repeated in the Book of Mormon (see 2 Nephi 27:25–26). 

The Book of Mormon and the Restoration

  • Jesus Christ has restored His Church today. The marvelous work God spoke of was the Restoration of His gospel, which began with the humble prayer of a young man. In 1820, Joseph Smith knelt to ask God which of all the Christian churches he should join. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared and directed Joseph not to join an existing church. Instead, Joseph was given the authority to organize The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The Church was formally organized in 1830.
  • The Book of Mormon restores important truths. With Joseph Smith’s prayer, God began to reveal truths that had been lost during the Great Apostasy. Many of these truths are taught in the Book of Mormon. After Jesus Christ was resurrected, He appeared to an ancient American people called the Nephites. He organized His Church in that land and authorized 12 disciples to lead it, similar to what He had done in Jerusalem. The Book of Mormon is a record of these people and of Jesus’s words to them. After the last writer of the book finished his work, the original Book of Mormon records were buried for centuries, and because they were hidden, they were not changed or altered, as the Bible was. Joseph Smith’s translation of the records fulfilled prophecy by revealing essential teachings and commandments. “The thing, which the Lord shall bring forth by his hand [the Book of Mormon], by the power of the Lord shall bring my people unto salvation” (2 Nephi 3:15). The translation of the Book of Mormon signaled the beginning of the Restoration: “It shall be a sign unto them, that they may know that the work of the Father hath already commenced” (3 Nephi 21:7).
  • The Book of Mormon supplements the Bible. The Book of Mormon does not replace the Bible. Instead, each book adds to the teachings of the other. “These last records [the Book of Mormon] . . . shall establish the truth of the first, which are of the twelve apostles of the Lamb [the Bible] . . . and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world; and that all men must come unto him, or they cannot be saved” (1 Nephi 13:40). The Old Testament prophet Ezekiel foretold that the teachings of the Bible (referred to as the stick of Judah) and the teachings of the Book of Mormon (referred to as the stick of Joseph) would be joined “one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand (Ezekiel 37:17).

Restored Truths in the Book of Mormon

The Restoration of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reestablished many lost biblical truths and brings additional clarity to the gospel of Jesus Christ. As part of that restoration of truth, the Book of Mormon sheds light on many important doctrines and will help people “come to the knowledge of their Redeemer and the very points of his doctrine, that they may know how to come unto him and be saved” (1 Nephi 15:14).

  • Jesus Christ atoned for your sins. The Book of Mormon reiterates that Jesus is the Savior of the world and that only through Him can people return to God. “Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth . . . unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit” (2 Nephi 2:6–7).

Read more about the role of Jesus Christ.

  • Baptism is essential. Just as Jesus was baptized, you must also be baptized by the proper authority to be saved. “And now, if the Lamb of God, he being holy, should have need to be baptized by water, to fulfil all righteousness, O then, how much more need have we, being unholy, to be baptized, yea, even by water!” (2 Nephi 31:5).

Learn more about baptism from the Bible and the Book of Mormon.

  • God has a plan for you. The Book of Mormon teaches you about the plan of salvation—where you came from, why you are here, where you are going after you die, and why your choices matter. You are “free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil” (2 Nephi 2:27).

Learn more about God’s plan.

  • Christ’s Church uses His name. Jesus asked, “How be it my church save it be called in my name? . . . If it be called in my name then it is my church, if it so be that they are built upon my gospel” (3 Nephi 27:8). Although people sometimes use the nickname “Mormon Church,” Christ’s restored Church bears his name, has been given His authority, and is officially called The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Do you have questions about Christ’s restored Church? Ready to learn more? Chat now. 

Many teachings in the Bible and the Book of Mormon are the same. The Book of Mormon also clarifies many doctrines. Compare them for yourself. Request a free copy of both the Bible and the Book of Mormon

Joseph Smith’s prayer to God is a remarkable story. Have the missionaries tell you more. Schedule a time to meet with them and discuss.