For centuries the Bible has been regarded as the only word of God. The members of The Restored Branch of Jesus Christ also look upon The Book of Mormon, The Book of Jeraneck and The Doctrine and Covenants as the word of God. Our range of scripture thus becomes larger than that of any other Latter Day or Restoration Group and people.
In various ages the Lord has commanded His people to read and study the scriptures. Jesus Christ told the Jewish rulers to "Search the scriptures"
(IVB John 5:40). In our own time the Lord has said "Study my word which hath gone forth among the children of men, and also study my word which shall come forth among the children of men or that which is now translating" (D&C 11:10). Clearly the word "which shall come forth" refers to our new added scriptures and to the prophets of the past, as well as those living now.
As a guide for living, the scriptures are unsurpassed. They are intimate, personal, and they touch the innermost life as well as our daily relationships and our attitudes towards God. They also form basis of the civil and religious laws governing many groups. The Ten Commandments is the foundation of secular government in many civilised countries. In these times there is a special need for a sure guide to righteous living, and this we can find in the scriptures.
The power of the scriptures is shown by the influence they have in moulding the lives of men and women and nations and ages. The change that the Saviours life and teachings work in people's thoughts and acts is a continuing miracle.
To be a good member of this church requires not only prayer and righteous living, but also study. Ideals and information are of little or no use unless we express them in our personal behaviour and human relationships.
Some people know the scriptures only in a vague, indefinite way, depending on what they hear in religious meetings or church. That is not enough. One must read and discover for him or herself the truths that they contain. The custom of scripture reading in the family should be an everyday part of life. Time can be found to do this if we have the will to do so.
For myself I turn to the scriptures daily to give my life the balance it must have. Here I find the eternal verities in which I can build a useful and expanding life. The scriptures are like a quite rock-girdled
in the midst of a wild flood. The Inspired Version of The Bible, The Book of
Mormon, The Book of Jeraneck and the Doctrine and Covenants contain the words
of eternal life unto this generation and they will rise in judgement against
those who reject them. Truly the holy scriptures have been given by the Lord
for our Instruction. The scriptures cannot achieve their purpose to guide us throughout
our lives unless we study them and carry out their teachings into action. In searching
the scriptures we shall find the way to the abundant life promised us by God. Remember
my brothers and sisters that unless we read the scriptures daily, our
testimonies will grow thinner, our spirituality will not increase in any depth.
I fear that many of us rush about from day to day taking for granted the Holy
Scriptures given to us by the Lord. We scramble to honour appointments with
doctors, lawyers and businessmen. Yet we think nothing of postponing interviews
with the Lord, we do this by postponing our study of the scriptures.
I pray that we may mind time to study our cherished scriptures, that they may give light unto our lives and show us the way in which we must live and be governed. Cherish what we have been given I pray. For I testify we shall not be added unto unless we have cherished and used what we have now got. Love the scriptures and in doing so love the Lord and he will indeed open unto you the windows of heaven.
In the Name of Jesus Christ. Amen.