“Proving to the World…That There is a God in Heaven” (D&C 20:1-36)

A portion of a revelation on church organization and government, given through Joseph Smith, Jun., at or near Fayette, New York.  Portions of this revelation may have been given as early as summer 1829. The complete revelation, known at the time as the Articles and Covenants, was likely recorded soon after April 6, 1830 (the day the Church was organized).  Joseph preceded his record of this revelation by writing:

“We obtained of him [Jesus Christ] the following, by the spirit of prophecy and revelation; which not only gave us much information, but also pointed out to us the precise day upon which, according to his will and commandment, we should proceed to organize his Church once more here upon the earth.”

the rise of the church of christ in these last days | being one thousand eight hundred and thirty years since the coming of our lord and savior | jesus christ | in the flesh | it being regularly organized and established | agreeable to the laws of our country | by the will and commandments of god | in the fourth month | and on the sixth day of the month | which is called april | which commandments were given to joseph smith | junior | who was called of god | and ordained an apostle of jesus christ | to be the first elder of this church | and to oliver cowdery | who was also called | of god| an apostle of jesus christ | to be the second elder of this church | and ordained under his hand | and this according to the grace of our lord and savior | jesus christ | to whom be all glory | both now and forever | amen |

after it was truly manifested unto this first elder | that he had received a remission of his sins | he was entangled again in the vanities of the world | but after repenting and humbling himself sincerely | through faith | god ministered unto him by an holy angel | whose countenance was as lightning | and whose garments were pure and white | above all other whiteness | and gave unto him commandments | which inspired him | and gave him power from on high | by the means which were before prepared | to translate the book of mormon | which contains a record of a fallen people | and the fulness of the gospel of jesus christ | to the gentiles | and to the jews also | which was given by inspiration | and is confirmed to others by the ministering of angels | and is declared unto the world by them | proving to the world that the holy scriptures are true | and that god does inspire men | and call them to his holy work | in this age and generation | as well as in generations of old | thereby showing that he is the same god | yesterday | today | and forever | amen |

therefore | having so great witnesses | by them shall the world be judged | even as many as shall hereafter come to a knowledge of this work | and those who receive it in faith | and work righteousness | shall receive a crown of eternal life | but those who harden their hearts in unbelief | and reject it | it shall turn to their own condemnation | for the lord god has spoken it | and we | the elders of the church | have heard | and bear witness to the words of the glorious majesty on high | to whom be glory | forever and ever | amen |

by these things we know that there is a god in heaven | who is infinite and eternal | from everlasting to everlasting | the same unchangeable god | the framer of heaven and earth | and all things which are in them | and that he created man | male and female | after his own image | and in his own likeness created he them | and gave unto them commandments | that they should love and serve him | the only living and true god | and that he should be the only being whom they should worship | but by the transgression of these holy laws | man became sensual and devilish | and became fallen man | wherefore | the almighty god gave his only begotten son | as it is written in those scriptures which have been given of him | he suffered temptations | but gave no heed unto them | he was crucified | died | and rose again the third day | and ascended into heaven | to sit down on the right hand of the father | to reign with almighty power | according to the will of the father | that as many as would believe | and be baptized | in his holy name | and endure in faith to the end | should be saved | not only those who believed after he came in the meridian of time in the flesh | but all those from the beginning | even as many as were before he came | who believed in the words of the holy prophets | who spake as they were inspired by the gift of the holy ghost | who truly testified of him in all things | should have eternal life | as well as those who should come after | who should believe in the gifts and callings of god by the holy ghost | which beareth record of the father | and of the son | which father | son | and holy ghost | are one god | infinite and eternal | without end | amen |

and we know that all men must repent | and believe on the name of jesus christ | and worship the father in his name | and endure in faith on his name to the end | or they cannot be saved in the kingdom of god | and we know that justification | through the grace of our lord and savior | jesus christ | is just and true | and we know also that sanctification | through the grace of our lord and savior | jesus christ | is just and true | to all those who love and serve god | with all their mights | minds | and strength | but there is a possibility that man may fall from grace and depart from the living god | therefore | let the church take heed and pray always | lest they fall into temptation | yea | and even let those who are sanctified take heed also | and we know that these things are true | and according to the revelations of john | neither adding to | nor diminishing from | the prophecy of his book | the holy scriptures | or the revelations of god | which shall come hereafter | by the gift and power of the holy ghost | the voice of god | or the ministering of angels | and the lord god has spoken it | and honor | power | and glory | be rendered to his holy name | both now and ever | amen |