Wednesday, January 12, 2011
The First Vision
What is "the First Vision"?
The first vision is a crucial point in Mormon church history. Joseph Smith was a young boy living in the northern part of New York state during the early 1820's. Joseph was confused by the many churches and their teachings. Believing in God, he study the Holy Bible for answers. While reading in James 1:5 he read the passage:
"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him."
Following the council of the scripture, the 14-year old boy arose early the next morning and sought a place of peace and privacy. He came a upon a wooded grove near his home and faithfully knelt to pray for the first time.Before Joseph began to speak he was overcome with a darkness that bore down upon him with great force. Joseph was so over come by this sense of doom that he was unable to speak. As Joseph was about to reach a point of unbareable fear, a beautiful light began to shine over him. Two personages appeared over Joseph and one called him by name and spoke saying, "This is my beloved son. Hear Him!" Joseph regained his ability to speak and was filled with desire to obtain an answer to his question. The men that stood before Joseph Smith were Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ. Joseph inquired which of the churches was the true chruch and which one he should join, he had not anticipated the answer. The Heavenly beings told Joseph that the church of the living Christ was not on the Earth at that time and those that claimed to be the true church lacked God's authority. Many of the churches preached God's commandments, but their hearts and intentions were not pure. Many churches sought monetary gain rather than the salvation.
The account of Joseph Smith's first vision is a beautiful example of faith and was the first step in the restoration of Christ's gospel in the latter days. Joseph Smith receieved coutless other visitations from angels and prophets as he prepared to translate the Book of Mormon. Joseph Smith was the first prophet of God in modern times. He was a young and uneducated boy when he received this revalation, yet he was divinly appointed. I believe that his humble nature made him an ideal candidate for ushering in the last dispensation. He was meek and willing to obey God.
I have treasured this story since I was a young girl and I know that it is true. I know that Joseph Smith was and is a true prophet of God and that he endured incredible obstacles in order to restore Christ's true church upon the Earth. Like Joseph, I obtained a testimony of these things through prayer and received my answers through the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. Heavenly Father allows all of his children the same opportunity to "ask" and "it shall be given him."