Mormonism and prophets/Revelation after Joseph Smith/Do modern prophets prophesy

Table of Contents

Do modern prophets prophesy, or are they simply "men of their time?"

Summary: Is they anything special about prophets that set them apart from others, or are they simply "men of their time?" Do modern day prophets actually prophesy of anything?

Jump to Subtopic:


Question: Are prophets simply "men of their time," without any special ability to guide the Church?

Prophets are a product of their own time and culture

Prophets have always reflected the times in which they lived—how could they not?

Prophets continue to receive revelation this days, so we can be successful in this life. They are like a bishop, but for the entire world. They are, indeed, "men of their time." How could the prophets be anything but "men of their time," since they are a product of their own time and culture? They are men that are capable of making mistakes, but Latter-Day Saints believe that if they follow the modern day prophet, they will be blessed. The teachings of the prophets are based on the scriptures, and when God decides to reveal new doctrine, he will do it by his prophets. When prophets receive revelation, it does not always necessarily mean that we are going to hear the prophets teach us new doctrine.


Question: Why are revelations no longer published on an ongoing basis?

It was only necessary to publish revelations in an ongoing fashion as the foundational doctrines and procedures of the Church were being established

In the early days of the Church, revelations used to be printed in Church periodicals such as the Times and Seasons and the Evening and Morning Star on an ongoing basis. However, the Doctrine and Covenants contains foundational revelations establishing core doctrines, the organization of the Church and the priesthood, and the manner of ordinances. Prophets after Joseph Smith have and continue to receive revelation, but only in a few circumstances have these revelations been foundational enough to necessitate them being added to the LDS canon and published.

This pattern is reflected in the Bible as well. Moses, the founding prophet of that dispensation, produced five books of scripture, which were the basis of religious instruction for the next several centuries. The books that followed Moses for the next couple centuries were mostly historical accounts (Joshua, Judges, Ruth), with only occasional revelations recorded by subsequent prophets.

Joseph Smith received fewer revelations after the Church was established

Joseph himself stopped receiving so many revelations as the government of the church was established. At this point in his life he said that the Lord should not be petitioned for every little thing, especially if revelations on the same subject had already been given or information "about the things the knowledge of which men ought to obtain in all sincerity before God for themselves." After the 12 apostles were organized the number of revelations that Joseph received decreased dramatically. Around 1835 Joseph stopped receiving revelations as people remember him to have done, nine years before his martyrdom.[1]


Question: If every President of the Church is a prophet, seer, and revelator, why have so few revelations after Joseph Smith been added to the Doctrine and Covenants?

Revelation continues in the Church even if it is not being added to the Doctrine and Covenants

Elder John A. Widtsoe explained that we still have revelation in the Church, even if it is not being added to the Doctrine and Covenants:

There is...need of continuous revelation. However, we must understand that there are two classes of revelation given by God to man. The first deals with the structure and content of the plan of salvation. Once given it does not need to be given again. Adam received it. *** Christ gave the same revelation to man in His dispensation. So did Joseph Smith in his dispensation. The foundation, or platform, once given does not need to be given again unless men forget the truth.

Then there are revelations that fit the changes in our lives, meet our new needs, help us overcome unforeseen conditions—revelations for our daily guidance.

This great country, the United States of America, has found itself in a great depression. We have the Gospel. What did the Lord do? He spoke to his Prophet, and we have what is known as the Welfare Program. It is the application of the eternal principles of the Gospel to present day needs. It is as revelation. We have that type of revelation continuously.

So, when people say: "We ought to have revelation now as we did in the day of Joseph," we must answer, "Open your eyes; we do have revelation every day; such as we need from day to day."

Revelations have been given to Joseph Smith, Brigham Young, John Taylor, Wilford Woodruff, Lorenzo Snow, Joseph F. Smith and President Heber J. Grant. Every one of them has had revelation whereby the Church has been guided.[2]


Question: Are Latter-day Saint prophets not really "prophets" because they don't foretell unknown events?

Prophets have many roles, only one of which is to prophesy future events: The key issue is the possession of divine authority, in that they give whatever message(s) God wishes communicated to His children

Some critics say that Latter-day Saint prophets aren't really "prophets" because they don't prophesy by foretelling unknown events. They commonly issue challenges such as, "If Gordon B. Hinckley is a prophet, tell me one event that he's prophesied." Do LDS prophets "prophesy"?

Prophets have many roles, only one of which is to prophesy future events. Most modern LDS prophets have been forthtellers rather than foretellers. The key issue is the possession of divine authority, in that they give whatever message(s) God wishes communicated to His children.

The LDS Bible Dictionary has a good response to this:

The work of a Hebrew prophet was to act as God's messenger and make known God's will. The message was usually prefaced with the words "Thus saith Jehovah." He taught men about God's character, showing the full meaning of his dealings with Israel in the past.... It was also the prophet's duty to denounce sin and foretell its punishment, and to redress, so far as he could, both public and private wrongs. He was to be, above all, a preacher of righteousness. When the people had fallen away from a true faith in Jehovah, the prophets had to try to restore that faith and remove false views about the character of God and the nature of the Divine requirement. In certain cases prophets predicted future events, e.g., there are the very important prophecies announcing the coming of Messiah's kingdom; but as a rule prophet was a forthteller rather than a foreteller.[3]

The Anchor Bible Dictionary treats prophesy as "inspired speech at the initiative of a divine power"[4] and includes the following:

  • Predictions or apparent predictions
  • Eschatology or apocalyptic
  • Social or religious criticism
  • Commissioned messages from deities

Furthermore, according to the Bible, the key role of "prophecy" is to testify of Christ, for "the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy" (Revelation 19:10).

Clearly, foretelling future events is only one calling of a prophet; many Biblical and modern prophets have carried out their calling by focusing on other roles. For example, Elijah is considered one of the great prophets of the Old Testament, and yet he didn't prophesy about the future. In a similar way, President Gordon B. Hinckley has made numerous social criticisms on topics such as the ills of pornography, the importance of the role of the family and the need for self reliance. In doing so, he has evoked warnings of previous prophets while not necessarily making a direct declaration of some pending event. At the same time, he has acted as a commissioned messenger for God with statements such as the Proclamation on the Family,[5] published in 1995 over the names of the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and read by President Hinckley to the sisters of the Church in a General Relief Society talk.

One example of LDS prophets "forthtelling" is Family Home Evening. In 1915 President Joseph F. Smith and his counselors in the First Presidency began a Churchwide effort to strengthen the family. They called on parents in the Church to gather their children once each week for a "Home Evening." Families were to take time to pray and sing together, read the scriptures, teach the gospel to one another, and participate in other activities that would build family unity.

The stated purpose of Family Home Evening was to strengthen families, which may have seemed curious at that time, when families were strong by today's standards. We now live in an age when about half of all marriages end in divorce, and the need for Family Home Evening is readily apparent. LDS prophets implemented a solution that addressed the future weaking of the institution of marriage, something infinitely more valuable than simply prophecying its demise.


Brigham Young (1859): "have I yet lived to the state of perfection that I can commune in person with the Father and the Son at my will and pleasure? No, though I hold myself in readiness that he can wield me at his will and pleasure"

Brigham Young:

I have flattered myself, if I am as faithful as I know how to be to my God, and my brethren, and to all my covenants, and faithful in the discharge of my duty, when I have lived to be as old as was Moses when the Lord appeared to him, that perhaps I then may hold communion with the Lord, as did Moses. I am not now in that position, though I know much more than I did twenty, ten, or five years ago. But have I yet lived to the state of perfection that I can commune in person with the Father and the Son at my will and pleasure? No, though I hold myself in readiness that he can wield me at his will and pleasure. If I am faithful until I am eighty years of age, perhaps the Lord will appear to me and personally dictate me in the management of his Church and people. A little over twenty years, and if I am faithful, perhaps I will obtain that favour with my Father and God.

I am not to obtain this privilege at once or in a moment. True, Joseph Smith in his youth had revelations from God. He saw and understood for himself. Are you acquainted with his life? You can read the history of it. I was acquainted with him during many years. He had heavenly visions; angels administered to him. The vision of his mind was opened to see and understand heavenly things. He revealed the will of the Lord to the people, and yet but few were really acquainted with brother Joseph. He had all the weaknesses a man could have when the vision was not upon him, when he was left to himself. He was constituted like other men, and would have required years and years longer in the flesh to become a Moses in all things. For the length of time he lived, he was as good a man as ever lived in the flesh, Jesus excepted. It was so ordered that a man has to live and gain by his experience that knowledge and wisdom, and that degree of stability in his character that will present him favourably to the heavenly hosts at all times and under all circumstances. Let us, then, resolve and act upon the principle of constant improvement.[6]


Wilford Woodruff (1869): "We had the privilege of beholding the face of the prophet...and seeing the workings of the Spirit of God with him, and the revelations of Jesus Christ unto him and the fulfilment of those revelations"

Wilford Woodruff:

The Apostles, in their labors, had to work on the same principle that the Saints in both former and latter days have had to work upon—namely the principle of faith. Joseph Smith had to work by faith. It is true that he had a knowledge of a great many things, as the Saints in former days had, but in many things he had to exercise faith . . . When the members of Zion's Camp were called, many of us had never beheld each others' faces; we were strangers to each other and many had never seen the prophet. We had been scattered abroad, like corn sifted in a sieve, throughout the nation. We were young men, and were called upon in that early day to go up and redeem Zion, and what we had to do we had to do by faith. We assembled together from the various States at Kirtland and went up to redeem Zion, in fulfilment of the commandment of God unto us. God accepted our works as He did the works of Abraham. We accomplished a great deal, though apostates and unbelievers many times asked the question, "What have you done?" We gained an experience that we never could have gained in any other way. We had the privilege of beholding the face of the prophet, and we had the privilege of travelling a thousand miles with him, and seeing the workings of the Spirit of God with him, and the revelations of Jesus Christ unto him and the fulfilment of those revelations. And he gathered some two hundred Elders from throughout the nation in that early day and sent us broadcast into the world to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Had I not gone up with Zion's Camp I should not have been here to-day, and I presume that would have been the case with many others in this Territory. By going there we were thrust into the vineyard to preach the Gospel, and the Lord accepted our labors. And in all our labors and persecutions, with lives often at stake, we have had to work and live by faith.[7]


Heber C. Kimball (1865): "I know it by revelation by the Spirit of God, for in this way my Heavenly Father communes with me"

Heber C. Kimball:

I know this. I know it by revelation by the Spirit of God, for in this way my Heavenly Father communes with me, and maketh known unto me his mind and will. I have never seen him in person, but when I see my brethren I see his image, and I discover the attributes of God in them.[8]


Orson Pratt (1878): "I have been blessed with some revelations and prophecies, and with dreams of things that have come to pass"

Orson Pratt:

I have thought the reason why we have not enjoyed these gifts more fully is, because we have not sought for them as diligently as we ought. I speak for one, I have not sought as diligently as I might have done. More than forty years have passed away since these promises were made. I have been blessed with some revelations and prophecies, and with dreams of things that have come to pass; but as to seeing things as a seer, and beholding heavenly things in open vision, I have not attained to these things. And who is to blame for this? Not the Lord; not brother Joseph—they are not to blame. And so it is with the promises made to you in your confirmations and endowments, and by the patriarchs, in your patriarchal blessings; we do not live up to our privileges as saints of God and elders of Israel; for though we receive many blessings that are promised to us, we do not receive them in their fullness, because we do not seek for them as diligently and faithfully as we should.[9]


Orson F. Whitney (1926): "One night I dreamed … that I was in the Garden of Gethsemane, a witness of the Savior’s agony"

Orson F. Whitney:

One night I dreamed … that I was in the Garden of Gethsemane, a witness of the Savior’s agony. … I stood behind a tree in the foreground. … Jesus, with Peter, James, and John, came through a little wicket gate at my right. Leaving the three Apostles there, after telling them to kneel and pray, He passed over to the other side, where He also knelt and prayed … : ‘Oh my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless not as I will but as Thou wilt.’

As He prayed the tears streamed down His face, which was [turned] toward me. I was so moved at the sight that I wept also, out of pure sympathy with His great sorrow. My whole heart went out to Him. I loved Him with all my soul and longed to be with Him as I longed for nothing else.

Presently He arose and walked to where those Apostles were kneeling—fast asleep! He shook them gently, awoke them, and in a tone of tender reproach, untinctured by the least show of anger or scolding, asked them if they could not watch with Him one hour. …

Returning to His place, He prayed again and then went back and found them again sleeping. Again He awoke them, admonished them, and returned and prayed as before. Three times this happened, until I was perfectly familiar with His appearance—face, form, and movements. He was of noble stature and of majestic mien … the very God that He was and is, yet as meek and lowly as a little child.

All at once the circumstance seemed to change. … Instead of before, it was after the Crucifixion, and the Savior, with those three Apostles, now stood together in a group at my left. They were about to depart and ascend into heaven. I could endure it no longer. I ran from behind the tree, fell at His feet, clasped Him around the knees, and begged Him to take me with Him.

I shall never forget the kind and gentle manner in which He stooped and raised me up and embraced me. It was so vivid, so real that I felt the very warmth of His bosom against which I rested. Then He said: ‘No, my son; these have finished their work, and they may go with me; but you must stay and finish yours.’ Still I clung to Him. Gazing up into His face—for He was taller than I—I besought Him most earnestly: ‘Well, promise me that I will come to You at the last.’ He smiled sweetly and tenderly and replied: ‘That will depend entirely upon yourself.’ I awoke with a sob in my throat, and it was morning.[10]


George Q. Cannon (1896): "I know that God lives. I know that Jesus lives; for I have seen him"

Spencer W. Kimball quotes George Q. Cannon:

Elder George Q. Cannon, who was in the presidency of the Church at one time, said this: `I know that God lives. I know that Jesus lives; for I have seen him.' - Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign (May 1974): 119; George Q. Cannon talk given on 6 October 1896, published in Deseret News Semi–Weekly (27 October 1896), Deseret News Weekly (31 October 1896), and later in Gospel Truth (vol. 1, iv, 1st edition, 1957, compiled by Jerreld L. Newquist).


Henry B. Eyring (1996): "I know as surely as did the Apostles Peter, James, and John that Jesus is the Christ, our risen Lord"

Henry B. Eyring:

I am grateful that I know as surely as did the Apostles Peter, James, and John that Jesus is the Christ, our risen Lord, and that he is our advocate with the Father. I know that the Father bore direct witness of His Beloved Son by introducing the resurrected Lord to the boy Joseph Smith in the Sacred Grove. I know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God, translated by the Prophet Joseph through the power of God. I know that the keys of the Melchizedek Priesthood were restored by those who received them from the Savior and that President Gordon B. Hinckley is now the only person on earth authorized to direct the use of all those keys. I bear solemn testimony that this is the true Church of Jesus Christ, in which the ordinances and the covenants are offered, which if accepted and honored produce peace in this life and assure us eternal life in the world to come. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.[11]


James E. Faust (1995): "Jesus is our divine Savior, Redeemer, and the son of God the Father. I know of his reality by a sure perception so sacred I cannot give utterance to it"

James E. Faust:

Mine is the certain knowledge that Jesus is our divine Savior, Redeemer, and the son of God the Father. I know of his reality by a sure perception so sacred I cannot give utterance to it. I know and testify with an absolute awareness that Joseph Smith restored the keys of the fulness of times and that every President of the Church has held those keys, as does President Gordon B. Hinckley today.[12]


Harold B. Lee: "I have received a witness that I cannot or dare not deny. When I see Jesus, I cannot mistake His identity. I know that He lives!"

Harold B. Lee:

I bear my witness to you this morning. There are some witnesses I cannot give now, perhaps sometime later. Many things are too sacred to share at this time. I have received a witness that I cannot or dare not deny. When I see Jesus, I cannot mistake His identity. I know that He lives![13]


Oaks (2000): "it is usually inappropriate to recite miraculous circumstances to a general audience that includes people with very different levels of spiritual maturity"

Dallin H. Oaks:

Why don't our talks in general conference and local meetings say more about the miracles we have seen? Most of the miracles we experience are not to be shared. Consistent with the teachings of the scriptures, we hold them sacred and share them only when the Spirit prompts us to do so…In bearing testimonies and in our public addresses we rarely mention our most miraculous experiences, and we rarely rely on signs that the gospel is true. We usually just affirm our testimony of the truthfulness of the restored gospel and give few details on how we obtained it. Why is this? Signs _follow_ those that believe. Seeking a miracle to convert someone is improper sign seeking. By the same token, it is usually inappropriate to recite miraculous circumstances to a general audience that includes people with very different levels of spiritual maturity. To a general audience, miracles will be faith-reinforcing for some but an inappropriate sign for others.[14]


Oaks (1997): "rarely speak of them publicly because...because we understand that the channels of revelation will be closed if we show these things before the world"

Dallin H. Oaks:

Visions do happen. Voices are heard from beyond the veil. I know this. But these experiences are exceptional. And those who have these great and exceptional experiences rarely speak of them publicly because we are instructed not to do so (see D&C 63:64) and because we understand that the channels of revelation will be closed if we show these things before the world.[15]


Boyd K. Packer (1980): "We do not talk of those sacred interviews that qualify the servants of the Lord to bear a special witness of Him, for we have been commanded not to do so"

There has come, these last several years, a succession of announcements that show our day to be a day of intense revelation, equaled, perhaps, only in those days of beginning, 150 years ago But then, as now, the world did not believe. They say that ordinary men are not inspired; that there are no prophets, no apostles; that angels do not minister unto men—not to ordinary men. That doubt and disbelief have not changed. But now, as then, their disbelief cannot change the truth. We lay no claim to being Apostles of the world—but of the Lord Jesus Christ. The test is not whether men will believe, but whether the Lord has called us—and of that there is no doubt. We do not talk of those sacred interviews that qualify the servants of the Lord to bear a special witness of Him, for we have been commanded not to do so. But we are free, indeed, we are obliged, to bear that special witness…Like all of my Brethren, I too come from among the ordinary people of the Church. I am the seventy–eighth man to be accepted by ordination into the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles in this dispensation. Compared to the others who have been called, I am nowhere near their equal, save it be, perhaps, in the certainty of the witness we share. I feel compelled, on this 150th anniversary of the Church, to certify to you that I know that the day of miracles has not ceased. I know that angels minister unto men. I am a witness to the truth that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, the Only Begotten of the Father; that He has a body of flesh and bone; that He knows those who are His servants here and that He is known of them. I know that He directs this Church now, as He established it then, through a prophet of God. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.[16]


George F. Richards: "The Lord has given me dreams which to me are just as real and as much from God as was the dream of King Nebuchadnezzar"

Spencer W. Kimball, quoting George F. Richards:

The Lord has revealed to men by dreams something more than I [President Kimball] ever understood or felt before. I heard this more than once in quorum meetings of the Council of the Twelve when George F. Richards was president. He was the venerable father of Brother LeGrand Richards who has just spoken to us. He said,

“I believe in dreams, brethren. The Lord has given me dreams which to me are just as real and as much from God as was the dream of King Nebuchadnezzar, which was the means of saving a nation from starvation, or the dream of Lehi who through a dream led his colony out of the old country across the mighty deep to this promised land, or any other dreams that we might read in the scriptures.

“It is not out of place for us to have important dreams,” he said. “And then more than 40 years ago I had a dream which I am sure was from the Lord. In this dream I was in the presence of my Savior as he stood mid-air. He spoke no word to me, but my love for him was such that I have not words to explain. I know that no mortal man can love the Lord as I experienced that love for the Savior unless God reveals it to him. I would have remained in his presence, but there was a power drawing me away from him.

“As a result of that dream, I had this feeling that no matter what might be required of my hands, what the gospel might entail unto me, I would do what I should be asked to do even to the laying down of my life.

“And so when we read in the scriptures what the Savior said to his disciples, ‘In my Father’s house are many mansions: … I go to prepare a place for you … that where I am, there ye may be also.’ (John 14:2–3.) I think that is where I want to be.

“If only I can be with my Savior and have that same sense of love that I had in that dream, it will be the goal of my existence, the desire of my life.”[17]


Marion G. Romney: "I have never told anybody some of the experiences I have had, not even my wife. I know that God lives. I not only know that he lives, but I know him"

In his journal, Marion G. Romney wrote:

I don't know just how to answer people when they ask the question, "Have you seen the Lord?" I think that the witness that I have and the witness that each of us has, and the details of how it came, are too sacred to tell. I have never told anybody some of the experiences I have had, not even my wife. I know that God lives. I not only know that he lives, but I know him.[18]


David B. Haight: "I was there with the outpouring of the Spirit in that room so strong that none of us could speak afterwards"

David B. Haight, at the time of the revelation which lifted the priesthood ban:

I would hope someday that our great-grandson Mark and others of our posterity would have similar spiritual experiences and that they would feel the spiritual power and influence of this gospel. I hope that Mark and others will have opportunities such as I had when I was in the temple when President Spencer W. Kimball received the revelation regarding the priesthood. I was the junior member of the Quorum of the Twelve. I was there. I was there with the outpouring of the Spirit in that room so strong that none of us could speak afterwards. We just left quietly to go back to the office. No one could say anything because of the powerful outpouring of the heavenly spiritual experience.

But just a few hours after the announcement was made to the press, I was assigned to attend a stake conference in Detroit, Michigan. When my plane landed in Chicago, I noticed an edition of the Chicago Tribune on the newsstand. The headline in the paper said, "Mormons Give Blacks Priesthood." And the subheading said, "President Kimball Claims to Have Received a Revelation." I bought a copy of the newspaper. I stared at one word in that subheading: claims. It stood out to me just like it was in red neon. As I walked along the hallway to make my plane connection, I thought, Here I am now in Chicago walking through this busy airport, yet I was a witness to this revelation. I was there. I witnessed it. I felt that heavenly influence. I was part of it. Little did the editor of that newspaper realize the truth of that revelation when he wrote, "Claims to Have Received a Revelation." Little did he know, or the printer, or the man who put the ink on the press, or the one who delivered the newspaper -- little did any of them know that it was truly a revelation from God. Little did they know what I knew because I was a witness to it.[19]


See FairMormon Evidence:
More information regarding prophets and revelation


To see citations to the critical sources for these claims, click here

Notes

  1. Richard L. Bushman, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling (New York: Knopf, 2005), 257.
  2. John A. Widtsoe, "Modern Revelation and Modern Questions," The Deseret News, Church Section (28 January 1939): 6.
  3. Bible Dictionary (LDS English edition of the Holy Scriptures), s.v. "prophet," 754, (emphasis added), (italics in original).
  4. David Noel Freedman, ed., (6 vols) The Anchor Bible Dictionary (New York: Doubleday, 1992), 477, s.v. "prophecy". ISBN 038542583X.
  5. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, The Family: A Proclamation to the World (First read by Gordon B. Hinckley as part of his message at the General Relief Society Meeting held 23 September 1995, in Salt Lake City, Utah.)
  6. Brigham Young, (September 1, 1859) Journal of Discourses 7:243-244.
  7. Wilford Woodruff, (December 12, 1869) Journal of Discourses 13:158.
  8. Heber C. Kimball, (19 February 1865) Journal of Discourses 11:82.
  9. Orson Pratt, (May 11, 1878) Journal of Discourses 25:146-147.
  10. Orson F. Whitney, "The Divinity of Jesus Christ," Improvement Era (Jan. 1926), 224–25. off-site; see also Liahona (Dec 2003): 16; punctuation, capitalization, and spelling standardized.
  11. Henry B. Eyring, "Witnesses for God," Ensign (November 1996), 30. off-site
  12. James E. Faust, Conference Report (April 1995), 83. See also James E. Faust, "Heirs of the Kingdom of God," Ensign (May 1995), 61. off-site
  13. Harold B. Lee, Teachings of Harold B. Lee (Salt Lake City, Utah: Bookcraft, 1996), 636. GospeLink (requires subscrip.)
  14. Dallin H. Oaks, "Miracles," CES Fireside in Calgary, Canada, 7 May 2000, 3.
  15. Dallin H. Oaks, "Teaching and Learning by the Spirit," Ensign (March 1997), 14. off-site
  16. Boyd K. Packer, "A Tribute to the Rank and File of the Church," Ensign (May 1980), 65. off-site
  17. Spencer W. Kimball, "The Cause Is Just and Worthy," General Conference (April 1974).
  18. Marion G. Romney, cited in F. Burton Howard, Marion G. Romney: His Life and Faith (Salt Lake City, Utah: Bookcraft, 1988), 222.
  19. David B. Haight, "This Work Is True," Ensign (May 1996), 22. off-site