“Page after Page Says We Believe,” Liahona, June 2018
“Mormons aren’t Christians.”
The statement from one of my high school classmates caught me off guard.
“Of course we are,” I said.
“Then why do you read the Book of Mormon?” he said as he walked away, leaving me no chance to reply.
I thought about his question a lot. The answer is, of course, that Mormons are Christians and the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ. We read it along with the Bible to learn even more about the Savior.
I had read the Book of Mormon before. I knew it was true. But because of my classmate’s question, I felt prompted to study it in a new way, keeping track of how often it mentions Jesus Christ. As I did, I was amazed.
I had hardly opened the book when I read on the title page that the Book of Mormon is written to convince readers “that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations.”
In the introduction to the Book of Mormon, I read, “The crowning event recorded in the Book of Mormon is the personal ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ among the Nephites soon after His resurrection.” It said that those who gain a witness from the Holy Ghost that the record is true “will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world.”
I turned to “he Testimony of Three Witnesses,” who said that an angel showed them the plates from which the Book of Mormon was translated, and that “we know that it is by the grace of God the Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, that we beheld and bear record that these things are true.”
Next, “The Testimony of the Prophet Joseph Smith” told of the visit of angel Moroni, who said the Book of Mormon contains the fulness of the everlasting gospel “as delivered by the Savior to the ancient inhabitants” of America.
I hadn’t even made it to 1 Nephi, and already I had found a lot!
My search continued. In 1 Nephi, I found that Lehi knew about the coming of the Messiah (see 1 Nephi 1:19). I read his prophecies about the Redeemer, “who should take away the sins of the world” (1 Nephi 10:10; see verses 4–10). I read Nephi’s description of the birth of Jesus Christ, His ministry, death, Resurrection, and future visit to ancient America (see 1 Nephi 10–12).
I read prophesies that the Book of Mormon would affirm Bible truths that “the Lamb of God is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world; and that all men must come unto him” (1 Nephi 13:40). And I read Nephi’s testimony that “all nations, kindreds, tongues, and people shall dwell safely in the Holy One of Israel if it so be that they will repent” (1 Nephi 22:28).
After one day, I was on page 53. I had finished just one of the books in the Book of Mormon, but what powerful witnesses I had already received!
In the weeks that followed, I found page after page of testimonies of Jesus Christ, visions in which He appeared to prophets, and the detailed description of His ministry among the ancient Americans. I concluded my reading with Moroni’s powerful testimony of Jesus Christ (see Moroni 9); his challenge to, “ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if [the Book of Mormon is] true” (Moroni 10:4; emphasis added); and, on the last page, his tender and compelling invitation to “come unto Christ” (Moroni 10:30, 32).
I found that the Book of Mormon refuted my classmate’s statement completely. If a Christian is someone who believes in Jesus Christ, then page after page in the Book of Mormon says, “We believe!”
Eventually, I saw my friend again. I told him about my experience and invited him to read the Book of Mormon. He politely declined but said he was happy that I accept Jesus Christ as my Savior. And after our discussion, I think he understood better what I mean when I say, “Of course we are Christians.”