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Teaching the doctrine of Christ is the purpose of missionary work

Published: Saturday, Jan. 18, 2014

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PROVO, UTAH

If there is one thing that is central to missionary work, it is what is known as the doctrine of Christ, Elder David F. Evans said Jan. 14 during the opening session of the 2014 Seminar for New Missionary Training Center Presidents and Visitors’ Center Directors.

“The reason we call it the doctrine of Christ is because that’s what Nephi called it,” said Elder Evans of the Seventy, who is executive director of the Missionary Department. When the Savior taught it, He referred to it as “My doctrine,” Elder Evans added.

Photo by R. Scott Lloyd
Elder David F. Evans of the Seventy, executive director of the Missionary Department, addresses 2014 Seminar for New MTC presidents and Visitors' Center Directors.

“Once you become familiar with it, you’re going to find the doctrine of Christ is sprinkled through every prophet’s teachings [in the Book of Mormon],” he said. “Nephi teaches it with great clarity, but so does Mosiah, Alma, King Benjamin.”

The terms “doctrine of Christ” and “doctrine of the gospel” are used interchangeably in scripture, Elder Evans said.

He defined it as faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, which leads to repentance, which leads to the first fruits of repentance, or baptism, which then leads to the gift of the Holy Ghost, followed by enduring to the end.

He read from scriptures that teach the doctrine of Christ, including 2 Nephi 31, which, in part, tells why Christ was baptized and that all must follow Christ and endure to the end.

“One of the ways you might teach obedience is by starting with the doctrine of Christ and the Savior’s willingness to be obedient, that He came to do the will of His Father and He humbled Himself and committed Himself to be obedient,” Elder Evans said.

Photo by R. Scott Lloyd
Provo MTC choir performs under the direction of Ryan Eggett during devotional.

He said that in accordance with instruction from President Thomas S. Monson, missionaries today are being instructed to work longer with people to help them apply all aspects of the doctrine of Christ, including enduring to the end.

rscott@desnews.com