Truth Restored

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we invite people of all backgrounds—many of which are very different from our own—to come unto Christ. We should not hesitate to invite those of other religions. Many of these good people have been seeking for the truth, even by study and also by faith, for a long time. We need to reach out to them in a courageous way with a sweet boldness, with love, and with a pure desire to share the truth from which they have been kept “because they know not where to find it” (D&C 123:12).

President Gordon B. Hinckley said:

We do not stand out in opposition to other churches. We respect all men for all the good that they do, and we say to those of all churches, we honor the good that you do and we invite you to come and see what further good we can do for you. [TGBH,667]

The Prophet Joseph Smith explained:

We don’t ask any people to throw away any good they have got; we only ask them to come and get more. [HC 5:259]

President Howard W. Hunter quoted President George Albert Smith and then expanded on his words:

In our humble efforts to build brotherhood and to teach revealed truth, we say to the people of the world what President George Albert Smith so lovingly suggested:

“We have come not to take away from you the truth and virtue you possess. We have come not to find fault with you nor to criticize you. We have not come here to berate you because of things you have not done; but we have come here as your brethren . . . and to say to you: ‘Keep all the good that you have, and let us bring to you more good, in order that you may be happier and in order that you may be prepared to enter into the presence of our Heavenly Father.’” (Sharing the Gospel with Others, comp. Preston Nibley [Salt Lake City: Deseret News Press, 1948], pp. 12–13). . . .
Ours is a perennial religion based on eternal, saving truth. Its message of love and brotherhood is lodged in scripture and in the revelations of the Lord to his living prophet. It embraces all truth. It circumscribes all wisdom—all that God has revealed to man, and all that he will yet reveal. [Howard W. Hunter, “The Gospel—A Global Faith,” Ensign, November 1991, 19]

The Restoration in its fullness completes and enhances the truths found in the religions of the world.
Latter-day Saints are occasionally accused of being narrow-minded or unwilling to consider the beliefs of others. Such accusations may be true of Latter-day Saints who do not understand their own religion, but those who know the position of the Church regarding the beliefs of other people willingly allow all to ”worship how, where, or what they may” (Articles of Faith 1:11).

In a conference address in 1921, Elder Orson F. Whitney described many religious leaders as being inspired. He said:

[God] is using not only his covenant people, but other peoples as well, to consummate a work, stupendous, magnificent, and altogether too arduous for this little handful of Saints to accomplish by and of themselves. . . .
All down the ages men bearing the authority of the Holy Priesthood—patriarchs, prophets, apostles and others, have officiated in the name of the Lord, doing the things that he required of them; and outside the [limits] of their activities other good and great men, not bearing the Priesthood, but possessing [depth] of thought, great wisdom, and a desire to uplift their fellows, have been sent by the Almighty into many nations, to give them, not the fullness of the Gospel, but that portion of truth that they were able to receive and wisely use. [CR, April 1921, 32–33]

The First Presidency has clearly stated:

The great religious leaders of the world such as Mohammed, Confucius, and the Reformers, as well as philosophers including Socrates, Plato, and others, received a portion of God’s light. Moral truths were given to them by God to enlighten whole nations and to bring a higher level of understanding to individuals. [Statement of the First Presidency regarding God’s Love for All Mankind, 15 February 1978; included in James E. Faust, “Communion with the Holy Spirit,” Ensign, May 1980, 12]

The religion into which a person is born may be incomplete, but it can still serve as a foundation for the reception of the fullness of the gospel. We are wise when we show respect for the beliefs of others.

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Truth Restored" Education Week Address, August 22, 2006


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