In just one month, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from around the world will join together to hear messages from the leadership of the church.
The conference begins with the general women’s session on Sept. 23 at 6 p.m. The following weekend includes four general sessions on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. The general priesthood session will be on Sept. 30 at 6 p.m.
To prepare for general conference, UtahValley360.com looked at the general conference sessions since President Thomas S. Monson became the president of the LDS Church, April 2008 – April 2017. Notating each verse by how many times it has been used, these are the 10 most-referenced verses in general conference.
- Moses 1:39 – “For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.”
- Mosiah 18:9 – “Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life.”
- Doctrine and Covenants 20:77 – “O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this bread to the souls of all those who partake of it, that they may eat in remembrance of the body of thy Son, and witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given them; that they may always have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.”
- 2 Nephi 31:20 – “Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.”
- Mosiah 3:19 – “For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.”
- Moroni 10:4 – “And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.”
- Moroni 10:32 – “Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.”
- Doctrine and Covenants 84:38 – “And he that receiveth my Father receiveth my Father’s kingdom; therefore all that my Father hath shall be given unto him.”
- Doctrine and Covenants 121:45 – “Let thy bowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the dews from heaven.”
- Helaman 5:12 – “And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.”
Promises are found throughout all 10 verses. In October 2011 General Conference, President Russell M. Nelson (then Elder) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke on the importance of covenants.
“The greatest compliment that can be earned here in this life is to be known as a covenant keeper,” President Nelson said. “The rewards for a covenant keeper will be realized both here and hereafter. Scripture declares that ‘ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, … and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven … [and] dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness.’ (Mosiah 2:41).”
The power of revealed scripture
Each of the most-cited verses come from the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price. However, when UtahValley360.com calculated the number of verses that came from each book, the New Testament had the most references.
Part of this explanation comes because references that come from the New Testament typically draw on many verses since the New Testament is filled with parables.
In his April 2010 address, Elder D. Todd Christofferson talked about the blessings that come from the scriptures.
“Through the scriptures, God does indeed ‘show forth his power’ to save and exalt His children,” Elder Christofferson said. “By His word, as Alma said, He enlarges our memory, sheds light on falsehood and error, and brings us to repentance and to rejoice in Jesus Christ, our Redeemer.”
Conference combining with scripture
On average, from April 2008 – April 2017, 838 verses are referenced each conference. To break that down further, each conference session has an average of 39 addresses, meaning each address references approximately 21 verses.
Combining scriptures with the inspired words of general conference creates powerful messages. In her April 2017 address, Sister Bonnie H. Cordon, first counselor in the Primary general presidency (then second counselor) shared some of the blessings of scripture.
“Scriptures enlighten our minds, nourish our spirits, answer our questions, increase our trust in the Lord, and help us center our lives on Him,” Sister Cordon said.
In the September 2017 First Presidency message, President Monson offered encouragement to prepare for conference.
“May we prepare to receive the personal revelation that comes in abundance during general conference,” President Monson wrote. “May our hearts be filled with deep determination as we raise our hands to sustain living prophets and apostles. May we be enlightened, uplifted, comforted, and strengthened as we listen to their messages. And may we be ready to recommit ourselves to the Lord Jesus Christ — His gospel and His work — and to live with renewed resolve in keeping His commandments and carrying out His will.”