Young Women Lesson 17: The Purpose of Covenants and Ordinances
Manual 1; Excerpt from "The Power of Covenants," by D. Todd Christofferson
April 20, 2012
"In times of distress, let your covenants be paramount and let your obedience be exact." -D. Todd Christofferson
• What are the purposes of ordinances and covenants?
• How can some kinds of activities or interests keep us from honoring our covenants with God?
Excerpt from "The Power of Covenants" by Elder D. Todd Christofferson, April 2009 General Conference:
We need strong Christians who can persevere against hardship, who can sustain hope through tragedy, who can lift others by their example and their compassion, and who can consistently overcome temptations. We need strong Christians who can make important things happen by their faith and who can defend the truth of Jesus Christ against moral relativism and militant atheism.
What is the source of such moral and spiritual power, and how do we obtain it? The source is God. Our access to that power is through our covenants with Him. A covenant is an agreement between God and man, an accord whose terms are set by God (see Bible Dictionary, “Covenant,” 651). In these divine agreements, God binds Himself to sustain, sanctify, and exalt us in return for our commitment to serve Him and keep His commandments.
We enter into covenants by priesthood ordinances, sacred rituals that God has ordained for us to manifest our commitment. Our foundational covenant, for example, the one in which we first pledge our willingness to take upon us the name of Christ, is confirmed by the ordinance of baptism. It is done individually, by name. By this ordinance, we become part of the covenant people of the Lord and heirs of the celestial kingdom of God.
Other sacred ordinances are performed in temples built for that very purpose. If we are faithful to the covenants made there, we become inheritors not only of the celestial kingdom but of exaltation, the highest glory within the heavenly kingdom, and we obtain all the divine possibilities God can give (see D&C 132:20).
To read the full talk, click here.