What Is the Godhead?
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“What Is the Godhead?” Liahona, June 2021

Gospel Basics

What Is the Godhead?

Heavenly Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are three separate beings with one purpose.

First Vision, by Walter Rane

A newspaper editor once asked the Prophet Joseph Smith what members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believed. In response, the Prophet wrote 13 statements of belief we call the Articles of Faith. The first statement says, “We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith 1:1). These three make up what we call the Godhead.

God, the Eternal Father

God has a resurrected body of flesh and bones. He is the Father of our spirits. He loves each of His children perfectly. God is perfect, has all power, and knows everything. He is just, merciful, and kind. We lived as spirits with God before we were born. He sent us to earth to learn and grow. God’s greatest desire is for each of His children to return to live with Him again after we die. God teaches us that we must follow Jesus Christ to return to God’s presence.

Jesus Christ

Listening, by Michael Jarvis Nelson

Jesus Christ also has a resurrected body of flesh and bones. He is God’s firstborn Son. Before we were born, God chose Him to be our Savior. This means Jesus came to earth to be an example for us, teach His gospel, atone for our sins, and rescue us from death. Because of Jesus Christ, we can be forgiven of our sins when we repent. Jesus Christ also suffered many things so that He could understand and help us. Jesus Christ died and then lived again, making it possible for everyone to live again.

The Holy Ghost

The Holy Ghost is the one member of the Godhead who does not have a physical body. He is a spirit. The Holy Ghost is able to communicate directly with our spirits. He testifies to us that God is real and that Jesus Christ is our Savior. The Holy Ghost acts as God’s messenger to give us feelings of love, guidance, or comfort. When we are baptized and confirmed, we receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. After our baptism, the Holy Ghost can always stay with us as we keep God’s commandments.

Joseph Smith’s First Vision

Over time people have been confused about the Godhead. People have disagreed about what God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are like. This is one reason why the First Vision that Joseph Smith had was so important. He saw that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have bodies and are two separate beings.

Separate but United

Photograph by Tyler Lewis

Scriptures and modern prophets teach us that God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost are separate beings with one purpose: our immortality and eternal life (see Moses 1:39). Like members of the same team, They work together to help us every day. We can feel closer to Them when we repent of our sins and choose the right.

Scriptures about the Godhead