To Know God Is Life Eternal

By Camille Fronk Olson

Camille Fronk Olson, “To Know God Is Life Eternal,” in Let Us Reason Together: Essays in Honor of the Life’s Work of Robert L. Millet, ed. J. Spencer Fluhman and Brent L. Top (Provo, UT: Religious Studies Center; Salt Lake City: 2016), 23–36.

To Know God Is Life Eternal

Camille Fronk Olson

Camille Fronk Olson was a professor of ancient scripture at Brigham Young University, chair of the Department of Ancient Scripture, and author of Women of the New Testament (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2014) and Women of the Old Testament (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2009) when this was written.

 

Through the mercy, merits, and grace of Christ, we are saved and exalted but also changed to become more like him in the process. In his great intercessory prayer, Jesus proclaimed, “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (John 17:3; emphasis added). From the moment Peter witnessed the resurrected Christ, he was a different man. Fearless in his desires to serve others and be a witness for the Redeemer, he came to know the Savior more deeply and meaningfully. Over time, Peter’s demeanor, attitudes, and actions became strikingly reminiscent of him whom he followed. Peter became a type of Christ. A similar process was working in other early Christians such as James and John, Paul, Prisca and Aquila, and Stephen. Coming to know the Father and the Son transforms our characters and desires to mirror theirs.

This chapter will explore the connections between knowing God, becoming like Christ, and receiving eternal life. It will also consider the parable of the unprofitable servant and other teachings by the Savior and his servants that assist believers to discover how to know God and recognize their deepening knowledge. Context and meaning of terms within these stories clarify and facilitate deeper appreciation for the process of becoming like him.

Con​​text

Nowhere else in scripture is the focus on gaining knowledge of God more pronounced than in the Apostle John’s writings in the New Testament. John’s record of the Savior’s prayer to the Father is set at the conclusion of the Last Supper, immediately before Jesus and the Eleven departed for the Garden of Gethsemane and his agonizing pleas to the Father on our behalf. Acknowledging that knowing the Father and Son leads to eternal life, the Atoning One prayed, “that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they may be one in us: . . . that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them” (John 17:21, 26). In his prayer, Jesus linked eternal life with knowing God, being one with God, and loving others with God’s pure love.

Li​​fe Eternal

Because the Father and the Son have eternal life, it is eternal life to know them (see John 5:26). Eternal life is experiencing life as God knows it. It is living forever with the Father and the Son and living like the Father and Son. Eternal life is the supernal salvific gift from God, and, as a gift, it is by definition “free” (see 2 Nephi 2:4; D&C 14:7; 6:13).

Drawing on the full canon of holy writ, Robert L. Millet has defined the term thus:

Eternal life is God’s life. It is life in the highest heaven, a life in which we enjoy fellowship with God our Father, his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, with members of our family, and with friends who have developed like passions for Christ and his gospel. Enjoying eternal life is therefore being with God. But it is even more, so very much more. It is a state of being—being like God, having acquired many of his attributes and characteristics, having enjoyed the cleansing power of the Savior’s blood, and having been sanctified by the Spirit made pure and holy and completely comfortable to stand (or kneel) in the divine presence.[1]

In this sense, eternal life is every bit as much the highest quality of life as it is quantity of life. God’s life is endless life because God’s name is “Endless” (see D&C 19:10), as are his attributes and existence.

To “Know” (Greek​​, ginosko)

Simply knowing about God or his Son and acknowledging their existence, however, does not constitute knowing them. In the extreme, evil spirits recognize Jesus and even testify of his divinity, but possess no knowledge that could merit God’s promises (see James 2:19; Mark 1:24). President Joseph F. Smith explained, “Lucifer, the son of the morning, knows Jesus Christ, the Son of God, much better than we, but . . . knowing, he yet rebels; knowing, he yet is disobedient; . . . hence, . . . there is no salvation in him.”[2] Neither do mortals’ direct interactions with the Lord guarantee that they will know God. For example, the children of Israel were fed and led by God for forty years, without coming to know and fully trust him (see Psalm 95:10; Hebrews 3:10). Likewise, some first-century Jews heard, watched, and conversed with Jesus over a period of years, but did not ever know him (see Joseph Smith Translation, Matthew 7:33; Matthew 7:21–23). When the Savior invites us to “know God,” he indicates that sufficient truth and tutelage are available and that we are capable of succeeding. From scriptural examples and exhortations, we may conclude that God is not incomprehensible, as sometimes claimed, but profoundly knowable.

From the inception of Mormonism, beginning with meditating on James 1:5, asking God for wisdom, and receiving answers that superseded all expectation, Joseph Smith stressed the importance of truly knowing God. Joseph’s “First Vision” corrected false assumptions about the personages, desires, and accessibility of the Father and the Son. For example, the Father and the Son are two distinct “Personages” whose glorious light banishes all darkness, who know us by our names, and who provide direct answers to our questions (see Joseph Smith—History 1:17–20). Through his subsequent experiences with obedience to God’s commands, the Prophet learned firsthand the life-changing effect that knowing God had on him.[3]

The early leadership of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints frequently expounded on revealed scriptures in their meetings to ensure a correct idea of God’s attributes in their desire to know God. According to Lectures on Faith, for “any rational and intelligent being” to have faith in God, he or she must have “a correct idea of [God’s] character, perfections, and attributes.”[4] The Lectures further state that without knowing God, a person “could not center his faith in him for life and salvation, for fear there should be a greater one than [God], who would thwart all his plans, and he, like the gods of the heathen, would be unable to fulfil his promises; but seeing he is God over all, from everlasting to everlasting, the creator and upholder of all things, no such fear can exist in the minds of those who put their trust in him, so that in this respect their faith can be without wavering.”[5] Knowing God therefore produces complete trust in him and confidence concerning his commands.

Furthermore, we must know that God, as stated in Lectures on Faith, “is merciful, and gracious, slow to anger, abundant in goodness, and that he was so from everlasting, and will be to everlasting.”[6] If he were not, “such is the weakness of human nature, and so great the frailties and imperfections of men, that unless they believed that these excellencies existed in the divine character, the faith necessary to salvation could not exist; for doubt would take the place of faith, and those who know their weakness and liability to sin, would be in constant doubt of salvation, if it were not the idea which they have of the excellency of the character of God. . . . An idea of these facts does away doubt, and makes faith exceedingly strong.”[7]

Because of God’s constant grace, justice, and mercy, we may know that willingly following his path will lead us to eternal life and becoming more like him.

The essence of the Greek verb ginosko, translated into English as “to know,” suggests the most complete sense of understanding which “relates to the knowledge acquired through experience . . . achieved in all the acts in which a man [or woman] can attain knowledge, in seeing and hearing, in investigating and reflecting.”[8] New Testament scholars have also concluded that the Christian view of “knowledge” is shaped and informed by the concept of ginosko in the Septuagint and other Greco-Jewish sources. As such, “an obedient and grateful acknowledgement of the deeds and demands of God is linked with knowledge of God and what he has done and demands. It is . . . a gift of grace.”[9]

For example, the Savior taught, “If any man will do [God’s] will, he shall know of the doctrine” (John 7:17; emphasis added), and “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21; emphasis added). When Jesus observed that eternal life is inseparably connected with knowing him and the Father, he conceived a depth of understanding that requires a willing heart, an engaged mind, active ears, and authentically living that knowledge in everyday life.

Other New Testament linguists have noted that this expanse of knowledge is a never-ending process of grateful obedience: “The knowledge of God from the creation (Rom. 1:19f) does not rest on a logical conclusion involving cause and effect but instead requires a recognition in obedience of the Creator. . . . [It is] a process that is never concluded (Eph. 1:17).”[10]

When we consider the Savior’s teachings, prophetic experience, and the meaning of ginosko, we must conclude that knowing God is a dynamic concept borne of gratitude and profound love. Its potential for growth is infinite as is the fruit that it bears: increased reverence for the gift and the Giver.

Kno​wing God through Willing Obedience and Service

John’s writings underscore that the earliest Christians understood that keeping the commandments of the Father and following the example of the Son is requisite to gaining knowledge unto eternal life. John taught the litmus test for knowing God: “And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments” (1 John 2:3). Again, to profess that we know him therefore means that we “walk, even as he walked” (1 John 2:6). The test includes, however, our motive for keeping God’s commands; we obey him because we love him (see John 14:15; 1 John 2:5). Expressions of love are not limited to words; as John wrote, “My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue only; but in deed and in truth” (Joseph Smith Translation, 1 John 3:18 [in 1 John 3:18, footnote a]). As we more fully develop the mind of Christ, we discover that “blessings from above” include “commandments not a few” (D&C 59:4). Furthermore, scripture informs us that when we love God and our neighbors, God’s “commandments are not grievous” (1 John 5:3) because they actually inspire us (see D&C 20:7). When we know God, we love and show reverence for his commandments not as mere stepping stones to something greater but as a foundation to life with God. Building upon “the rock of our Redeemer” is not episodic but an approach to living woven into our very natures (see Helaman 5:12).

Robert L. Millet observed, “I am convinced that if we will seriously call upon the Lord and ask him regularly to bless us to feel what we ought to feel and see what we ought to see, we will sense the divine hand upon our shoulder, nudging us onward and upward, all the days of our lives. We will then begin to balance the divine discontent (a constant inner enticement to repent and improve) with what Nephi called ‘a perfect brightness of hope’ (2 Nephi 31:20) and thereby find peace and lead happy and productive lives.”[11]

The Apostle Paul calls this authentic manner of knowing having “the mind of Christ” (1 Corinthians 2:16). Through a lifetime of selfless love and sacrifice, we may receive the mind of Christ, not as a single event but through a sacred journey built on doing truth rather than merely professing faith (see John 3:21). It is not a fanatical attempt to force spiritual knowledge, but a process whereby we learn to “wait on him,” rely on him, develop deeper trust in him, and cheerfully serve him. By consequence, we may experience “the rest of the Lord,” even in mortality, which President Joseph F. Smith described as “entering into the knowledge and love of God, having faith in his purpose and in his plan, to such an extent that we know we are right, and that we are not hunting for something else.”[12]

Similarly, Eliza R. Snow wrote of unexpected blessings that accompany obedience:

When you are filled with the Spirit of God, and the Holy Ghost rests upon you . . . do you have any trials? I do not think you do. For that satisfies and fills up every longing of the human heart, and fills up every vacuum. When I am filled with that spirit my soul is satisfied; and I can say, in good earnest, that the trifling things of the day do not seem to stand in my way at all. But just let me lose my hold of that spirit and power of the Gospel, and partake of the spirit of the world, in the slightest degree, and trouble comes; there is something wrong. I am tried; and what will comfort me? You cannot impart comfort to me that will satisfy . . . Is it not our privilege to so live that we can have this constantly flowing into our souls?[13]

Nothing is impossible. Fear dissipates. We sense a growing confidence in our ability to obey because of our deepening knowledge, love, and trust in God. This is not self-confidence; it is God-confidence.

Near the end of his life and the annihilation of the Nephite people, the prophet Mormon wrote a letter to his son Moroni in which he recorded a sermon he had preached to “the peaceable followers of Christ,” who had “obtained a sufficient hope by which [they could] enter into the rest of the Lord, from this time henceforth until [they would] rest with him in heaven” (Moroni 7:3). Even amid continual war and civil unrest, Mormon judged these hopeful few to have found rest “because of [their] peaceable walk with the children of men” (Moroni 7:4). Their knowledge of and love for the Father and Son had been nourished through years of good deeds for others motivated by gratitude and reverence toward their Creator and Redeemer.

The Parable of the Unprofitable Servant

Through his timeless teachings and parables, Jesus encouraged all who would listen to trust God and walk in faith—to learn truth by doing truth. For example, after giving the Twelve a better appreciation for the tremendous power inherent in having faith in him, Jesus responded to their request for an increase in faith by relating the parable of the unprofitable servant. This is one of the lesser-known and lesser-cited parables, perhaps because its connection to a plea for increased faith appears obscure or even disjointed. The Apostles asked Jesus to increase their faith, or perhaps their knowledge of the Father and Son. In essence, they were asking, “Teach us to really know you.” In response, Christ told them this parable:

But which of you, having a servant plowing or feeding cattle, will say unto him by and by, when he is come from the field, Go and sit down to meat?

And will not rather say unto him, Make ready wherewith I may sup, and gird thyself, and serve me, till I have eaten and drunken; and afterward thou shalt eat and drink?

Doth he thank that servant because he did the things that were commanded him? I [think] not.

So likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: We have done that which was our duty to do. (Luke 17:7–10)

The Savior is clearly the Master in the parable. He tells us that we are the servant, or more accurately the “slave” (doulos), as the Greek renders it. Important doctrines are alluded to in the parable that teach us how faith is strengthened during challenging times. Slaves were essential to the social and economic structure of the Roman Empire and an accepted norm among the Jews for generations. Considering the empire as a whole, an estimated one in six people was enslaved.[14] In contrast to American history, in New Testament times, slaves were neither recognized by race, nor a lack of education, nor even by necessarily being at the bottom of the socioeconomic ladder. Rather, slavery was a product of the widespread patron-client dynamic.

From the time of Augustus Caesar’s Pax Romana, slaves in the Roman Empire were less likely to be prisoners of war or victims of kidnappers. More frequently, they were born to slaves, or forced into slavery to pay their debts, or abandoned by their family; some volunteered to become slaves. Because a slave’s individual social standing, honor, and economic opportunity were dependent on the status of his or her owner, chances for improved social standing and careers enticed some individuals to sell themselves into slavery for a time. In contrast to the free poor, slaves may have enjoyed material advantages.[15] Not only did slavery offer job security when employment opportunities were thin, but slaves were exempt from heavy taxes levied against noncitizens and could inherit an improved lifestyle when manumitted. Not infrequently, freed slaves were even granted citizenship in recognition of their life’s service to the empire.[16] No laws, however, protected slaves from abuse by the hand of their owners. Without control of their living conditions in times of sickness or health, and without possessions, even of their own bodies, slaves would have likely experienced psychological distress. On the other hand, a gracious and benevolent owner created living conditions so inviting that manumitted slaves sometimes elected to remain a working member of the owner’s household.[17]

Understanding the potential for first-century slaves to receive added freedom and opportunities in life after years of dedicated service may inform our appreciation for the Lord’s likening us to slaves in the parable. Certainly the Apostle Paul, a Roman citizen and freeman from birth, was not offended by such imagery because he also used it to describe his willingness to turn over his life to the Master; he rejoiced at his good fortune to have become a slave in the service of Christ (see 1 Corinthians 7:22; 9:19). A similar teaching is found in the Book of Mormon. Amaleki invited us to “come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption. Yea, come unto him, and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved” (Omni 1:26; emphasis added). Optimum trust is implicit in a person’s willingness to give her soul to another, to selflessly serve indefinitely.

In the parable, we are not only the Lord’s slaves, but we acknowledge that we are his “unprofitable servants.” Jesus asked his disciples whether the servant in the parable who has been working all day in the fields should expect to be richly rewarded and finally served by the Master in return. Anticipating that his listeners would see the fallacy of such an expectation, Jesus instead explained that the servant would hasten to prepare and serve dinner to the Master before preparing something to eat for himself. Likening his disciples to the servant, the Savior concluded, “Likewise ye, when ye shall have done all those things which are commanded you, say, We are unprofitable servants: We have done that which was our duty to do.”

We don’t much like being called unprofitable. In this great era of entitlement, when consulting companies are reportedly hired for the sole purpose of stroking egos of new employees, when workers expect bonuses for merely showing up to work, and when students anticipate “A” grades because they attended and completed the class, the Savior’s parable is difficult to swallow. On those days when our confidence is shattered, or we feel responsible for all the world’s problems, the lesson that Jesus teaches in this parable is not particularly welcomed. It can sound like the Lord is asking us to add even more work to our already impossible daily demands. Instead of reminding us of our “nothingness” without Christ, we prefer a scripture which reads, “Thou art fine just the way thou art, my daughter, and hast worked hard enough, kick back now and rest, for I will do thy work for thee.” After all, just five chapters later, Luke records another of Christ’s parables that does indeed reverse the roles: “The lord . . . shall gird himself, and make [his servants/slaves] to sit down to meat, and will come forth and serve them” (Luke 12:37). The fact that the Lord has served and does indeed serve us daily, however, does not indicate that we are no longer indebted to him.

Through the parable of the unprofitable servant, Jesus provided a vital lesson for knowing God and thereby better appreciating his service to us. As in the parable, King Benjamin called his people unprofitable servants, even when they were previously described as “a diligent people in keeping the commandments” (Mosiah 1:11). In his sermon, this beloved Nephite monarch testified that everything that we are we owe “to that God who has created [us], and has kept and preserved [us], and has caused that [we] should rejoice” (Mosiah 2:20). All that God asks of us in return is to follow him, and when we do, he immediately blesses us all the more, increasing our debt to him. King Benjamin concluded, “Therefore, of what have ye to boast?” (Mosiah 2:24). Aaron, a great Nephite missionary, taught King Lamoni’s father that “since man had fallen he could not merit anything of himself; but the sufferings and death of Christ atone for their sins, through faith and repentance” (Alma 22:14). The closer we come to the Savior, the easier it is to admit that we are nothing without the grace and power of Jesus Christ.

Another insight to knowing God becomes evident when we resist focusing on how long we work in the Lord’s service, or how hard we work, or even what we are specifically assigned to do. Instead of answering what and how, what if the Master is teaching us why we work and why we serve? What if his message is what we learn and become along the way when we trust God completely? Two scriptural examples, one from the New Testament and the other from the Book of Mormon, illustrate how our motives in serving others can transform our character.

The epistle of the Apostle Paul to Philemon in the New Testament tells of Onesimus, a slave whose name means “profitable” in Greek, who ran away from his master Philemon. In truth, Onesimus was not profitable when he deserted his duty in Colossae but ended up in another city where he met the imprisoned Paul. There Onesimus was converted to Jesus Christ and returned to Philemon with a letter from Paul requesting that Philemon forgive his repentant slave. In a delightful play on words, Paul becomes a type of Christ who justified Onesimus because the slave was penitent, albeit still a work in progress. The Apostle Paul wrote to Philemon, “In time past [Onesimus] was to thee unprofitable, but now [is] profitable to thee and to me” (Philemon 1:11). Through his faith in the healing power of Christ, Onesimus was declared profitable, worthy, or righteous. Through the grace of Jesus Christ, he was made worthy of God’s blessing.

Ammon, a Nephite missionary to the wicked Lamanites, embraced the blessing of being about the Lord’s work without expectation of praise along the way. Captured by the Lamanites and taken as a prisoner to their king, the young missionary was given an offer to marry the king’s daughter. Instead, Ammon requested to be the king’s servant. He volunteered to be a slave for Christ. After hearing the incredible report of Ammon’s labors during his first day at work in the king’s field—gathering scattered sheep and fighting off those who attempted to steal them—King Lamoni inquired as to the whereabouts of this faithful servant, only to learn that Ammon was already preparing the king’s horses and chariots as he had been previously directed. Upon hearing this, King Lamoni exclaimed, “Surely there has not been any servant among all my servants that has been so faithful as this man; for even he doth remember all my commandments to execute them” (Alma 18:10). Through his selfless service, Ammon inspired Lamoni to trust him and thereby come to know God. In a similar way, Jesus may have been telling his Apostles that as indentured servants their faith would increase when they lost themselves in the work, found joy and satisfaction in helping others, and did not seek recognition.

In his analysis of the parable of the unprofitable servant, Elder John K. Carmack of the Seventy observed, “Perhaps the Savior was teaching us [in the parable] that if we are serious about desiring greater faith, nothing short of maintaining a constant eternal perspective will do. If we place any condition on our willingness to serve the Lord with all our hearts, we diminish our faith. If we have complete trust in him . . . we will continue with pure intent and total commitment the rest of our lives.”[18]

In a day when we may hear more criticism and mocking than praise for our work, the Master reassures us in the parable that he knows our heart and that he has not left us to serve alone. An oft-repeated phrase in the Book of Mormon promises prosperity for those who keep the commandments of God, and being “cut off from the presence of the Lord” for those who do not (Alma 50:20; see also 2 Nephi 1:20; Alma 37:13). When considered as a pair of opposites, God’s blessing of prosperity is his presence, not necessarily wealth or health or family. In coming to know God, we count it a pleasure to serve him every hour of every day, forever and ever, because such service invites us into his presence. In the parable of the unprofitable servant, the blessing is not having an overabundance of time, money, or ease. The blessing is being in the presence of God, a gift he freely offers through the companionship of the Holy Ghost to all who covenant with him.

Jesus Christ as Exemplar

Considered yet another way, the servant in the parable can also be seen as a type of Christ who patiently waits on his Father and glorifies him in the process. As the Great Exemplar, Jesus never asks us to do what he does not do himself. Earlier the same evening that he offered his intercessory prayer, Jesus washed the Apostles’ feet in the upper room and explained to them, “For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you. Verily, verily, I say unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord; neither he that is sent greater than he that sent him” (John 13:15–16). Throughout the Gospel of John, Jesus Christ is shown as the one who continually serves, obeys, and imitates the Father. To know the one is to know the other (see John 14:7–10):

The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

For the Father loveth the Son, and sheweth him all things that himself doeth. (John 5:19–20)

I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things.

And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him. (John 8:28–29)     

Many good works have I shewed you from my Father. . . .

If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.

But if I do . . . believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him. (John 10:32, 37–38)

For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.

And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak. (John 12:49–50)

Jesus became like his Father by turning his life over to him, doing all that was asked of him, and doing this service with love. Even after paying the ransom for each of us with his perfect blood, Jesus Christ continued to serve, just as in the parable. He taught the righteous spirits in the spirit world and prepared a way for those who had died without receiving sufficient knowledge of him (see D&C 138), returned to report to his Father (see John 20:17), and afterwards ministered to his disciples in the old and new worlds as the Resurrected Lord (see Acts 1:1–8; 3 Nephi 11–28). His service to the Father and humankind never ends.

Conclusion

By entering into the covenant of baptism, we demonstrate to the Father, to the Son, and to ourselves that we need a Redeemer. We desire to make their work our work. In short, we choose to become servants, or slaves to the Lord, to go where he calls us to go, to say what he directs us to say, and to become what he alone enables us to become. Following Christ’s example is how we grow in faith, obedience, and knowledge of the Father and the Son. To know them is the supreme mode of being, whether in this life or the next. It is founded on personal motivation to follow their commands because we love them and know that we were and are perfectly loved by them.

Notes


[1] Robert J. Millet, Coming to Know Christ (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1985), 90–91.

[2] James R. Clark, comp., Messages of the First Presidency, 6 vols. (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1965), 5:9.

[3] In a discourse to the general Church membership on April 7, 1844, Joseph Smith taught, “I want to go back to the begin & so get you into a more lofty splen than what the human being generally understands I want to ask this cong: every man wom: & child to ansr. the questn. in their own heart what kind of a being is God I agn. rept. the questn. what kind of a being is God does any man or woman know have any of you seen, him heard him, communed with him, here is the questn. that will peradventure from <this time> henceforth occupy your attentn.— the Apos: says this is Eternal life to know God & J. C [Jesus Christ] who he has sent— that is eternl. life if any man enquire what kind of a being is God if he will search deligently his own heart that unless he knows God he has no eternal life—my first object is to find out the character of the true God.” General Church minutes, 2 (in handwriting of Thomas Bullock, who recorded the sermon), Church History Library. I am indebted to Michael MacKay for his assistance in finding this account.

[4] Lectures on Faith (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1985), 2:4.

[5] Lectures on Faith, 3:19.

[6] Lectures on Faith, 3:14.

[7] Lectures on Faith, 3:20.

[8] Gerhard Kittel, ed., Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, 10 vols. (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1964), 1:690.

[9] Kittel, Theological Dictionary, 1:707.

[10] Horst Batz and Gerhard Schneider, eds., Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, 3 vols. (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1999), 1:249.

[11] Millet, Coming to Know Christ, 49.

[12] Joseph F. Smith, Gospel Doctrine (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1986), 58.

[13] Eliza R. Snow, Woman’s Exponent, September 15, 1873, 62.

[14] William A. Simmons, Peoples of the New Testament World (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 2008), 311.

[15] Simmons, Peoples, 90–92.

[16] Simmons, Peoples, 306–22.

[17] Keith R. Bradley, Slavery and Society at Rome (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994), 92.

[18] John K. Carmack, “Lord, Increase Our Faith,” Ensign, March 2002, 56–57.