“Elders to Proclaim the Gospel to All the World; Signs to Follow Believers; Condemnation of Unbelievers”

Doctrine and Covenants 84:60–80

60 Verily, verily, I say unto you who now hear my words, which are my voice, blessed are ye inasmuch as you receive these things;
61 For I will forgive you of your sins with this commandment—that you remain steadfast in your minds in solemnity and the spirit of prayer, in bearing testimony to all the world of those things which are communicated unto you.
62 Therefore, go ye into all the world; and unto whatsoever place ye cannot go ye shall send, that the testimony may go from you into all the world unto every creature.
63 And as I said unto mine apostles, even so I say unto you, for you are mine apostles, even God’s high priests; ye are they whom my Father hath given me; ye are my friends;
64 Therefore, as I said unto mine apostles I say unto you again, that every soul who believeth on your words, and is baptized by water for the remission of sins, shall receive the Holy Ghost.
65 And these signs shall follow them that believe—
66 In my name they shall do many wonderful works;
67 In my name they shall cast out devils;
68 In my name they shall heal the sick;
69 In my name they shall open the eyes of the blind, and unstop the ears of the deaf;
70 And the tongue of the dumb shall speak;
71 And if any man shall administer poison unto them it shall not hurt them;
72 And the poison of a serpent shall not have power to harm them.
73 But a commandment I give unto them, that they shall not boast themselves of these things, neither speak them before the world; for these things are given unto you for your profit and for salvation.
74 Verily, verily, I say unto you, they who believe not on your words, and are not baptized in water in my name, for the remission of their sins, that they may receive the Holy Ghost, shall be damned, and shall not come into my Father’s kingdom where my Father and I am.
75 And this revelation unto you, and commandment, is in force from this very hour upon all the world, and the gospel is unto all who have not received it.
76 But, verily I say unto all those to whom the kingdom has been given—from you it must be preached unto them, that they shall repent of their former evil works; for they are to be upbraided for their evil hearts of unbelief, and your brethren in Zion for their rebellion against you at the time I sent you.
77 And again I say unto you, my friends, for from henceforth I shall call you friends, it is expedient that I give unto you this commandment, that ye become even as my friends in days when I was with them, traveling to preach the gospel in my power;
78 For I suffered them not to have purse or scrip, neither two coats.
79 Behold, I send you out to prove the world, and the laborer is worthy of his hire.
80 And any man that shall go and preach this gospel of the kingdom, and fail not to continue faithful in all things, shall not be weary in mind, neither darkened, neither in body, limb, nor joint; and a hair of his head shall not fall to the ground unnoticed. And they shall not go hungry, neither athirst.

President Joseph Fielding Smith wrote:

“The great work in these last days is the preaching of the gospel to all the world. In one of the latest instructions by our Lord to His disciples, when they came to Him to know something about the signs of His Second Coming, He said to them that one sign was that ‘again, this Gospel of the Kingdom shall be preached in all the world, for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come, or the destruction of the wicked’ [Joseph Smith— Matthew 1:31]. The fact that it was to be preached again is an indication that there had been a time in which it had not been preached following the days of the Apostles. Now the day of that preaching had come, and the command had been given that the elders of the Church should go forth, and where they could not go they were to send, that the message might be proclaimed to every creature [see D&C 84:62]. To the six brethren unto whom this revelation was given, and perhaps others, who were absent but who had been proclaiming the gospel, the Lord said their sins were forgiven them and they were admonished to remain steadfast in their minds in solemnity and the spirit of prayer, it bearing testimony to all the world [see D&C 84:61]. To these brethren, the Lord said: ‘And as I said unto mine apostles, even so I say unto you, for you are mine apostles, even God’s high priests; ye are they whom my Father hath given me; ye are my friends’ [D&C 84:63].

“In calling these brethren Apostles more than two years before the first Apostles in this dispensation were ordained, the Lord had reference to their mission to all the world as His witness, and upon them the same commission to preach and bear witness was laid as was given to His disciples when He sent them forth on such a mission. In the broad sense an Apostle is a witness, or one who is sent to proclaim His truth. The dictionary said he is ‘one who first evangelizes a certain nation’; and to this great work these brethren were now called. ‘Therefore, as I said unto mine apostles I say unto you again, that every soul who believeth on your words, and is baptized by water for the remission of sins, shall receive the Holy Ghost’ [D&C 84:64]. For many centuries, men had been without the guidance of the Holy Ghost because there was none to lay hands on them to bestow that gift, and therefore false doctrines and traditions had found place among the nations.

“The same signs also were promised these servants in this dispensation, that they should have power to perform mighty works, and these signs should follow the believers. They were given power to cast out devils; they were to heal the sick; open the eyes of the blind, unstop the ears of the deaf; cause the tongues of the dumb to speak, and be guided in all things by the inspiration which was given to the ancient Twelve [see D&C 84:65–70]. In fact such things are an essential part of the gospel, and where they are not found, there the gospel in its power is not found. . . .

“The gifts of the Spirit, as we have previously discussed them, are given to the faithful for their edification and for the edification of the Church. To one is given one gift, and to another, another gift. Some have the gift of healing, others of prophecy and vision, others to work miracles according to their faith. ‘And all these gifts come by the Spirit of Christ; and they come unto every man severally, according as he will’ [Moroni 10:17].

“These gifts and blessings are only for those who have faith and believe the gospel. They are not for the world. Should the Lord bestow on an elder one of these great gifts and should he boast of his power, then the gift would be taken from him, for they are not for the world. ‘But a commandment I give unto them,’ said the Lord to the elders, ‘. . . they shall not boast themselves of these things, neither speak them before the world; for these things are given unto you for your profit and for salvation’ [D&C 84:73].

“The preaching of the gospel should be done in the spirit of the utmost humility and perseverance. Missionaries are commanded not to idle away their time, but to give to the Lord their heart, and serve Him with all their ‘might, mind and strength’ [D&C 4:2]. Every missionary who goes forth is under the solemn obligation and pledge to bear testimony of the restoration of the gospel, and witness of its truth. In doing this he leaves all who hear him without excuse and their sins are on their own heads. If he fail to do this then he will not ‘stand blameless before God at the last day’ [D&C 4:2]. If this important message is properly given, then all who reject it are under condemnation. ‘Verily, verily, I say unto you, they who believe not on your words, and are not baptized in water in my name, for the remission of their sins, that they may receive the Holy Ghost, shall be damned, and shall not come into my Father’s kingdom where my Father and I am’ [D&C 84:74]. This is certainly pointed language and cannot be misunderstood by any who are seeking the truth. There are many among us, who do not seem to realize, or believe, that the Lord means what He says. They think that He is like many earthly fathers, and will change His mind, and His covenants may be broken at will, and yet the blessings be received which are based on faithfulness. Here, however, the Lord speaks emphatically, as He does in other scriptures. He declares that this revelation and commandment ‘is in force from this very hour upon all the world, and the gospel is unto all who have not received it’ [D&C 84:75]. Therefore it is a serious matter for one who hears a convincing testimony borne by the power of the Holy Ghost, to reject it.

“The faithful elders who go forth duly commissioned and with the spirit of the gospel upon them, such as the Lord can call His friends, should have the guiding influence of His Spirit go before them. ‘Behold, I send you out to prove the world, and the laborer is worthy of his hire’ [D&C 84:79]. What a wonderful blessing is promised them: ‘And any man that shall go and preach this gospel of the kingdom, and fail not to continue faithful in all things, shall not be weary in mind, neither darkened, neither in body, limb, nor joint; and a hair of his head shall not fall to the ground unnoticed. And they shall not go hungry, neither athirst’ [D&C 84:80]. Thousands of missionaries have put this promise to the test and the Lord has kept His promise to all those who have been faithful in their calling. Surely if the Father notices when a sparrow falls, He will not forsake any who in faithful obedience to His will seek His aid. That there have been those who have gone forth and have been weary in body and mind, and who have gone hungry, there is no doubt, for there are missionaries who have not given all their heart to the Lord and they have idled away valuable time when it was needful for them to proclaim the truth.”

(Church History and Modern Revelation, 2 vols. [1953], 1:341–42, 343–44.)

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