To receive this blessing, we must follow the principles and ordinances of the gospel see Articles of Faith We must:.
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Turn to God through sincere repentance, having a change of heart and confessing and forsaking sins. Be confirmed a member of the Church and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands. These principles have been taught since the days of Adam. As we come to understand and believe these truths and gain a firm testimony of Jesus Christ, we strive to obey His commandments and want to share our blessings with our family and others see 1 Nephi — With this secure foundation of testimony, other elements of Church activity follow naturally.
Personal spiritual growth takes place as we draw close to God through prayer, scripture study, pondering, and obedience. Nephi taught:. Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save.
Each of us is accountable before God to learn and keep His commandments and to live the gospel. We will be judged according to our actions, the desires of our hearts, and the kind of people we have become. As we live the gospel of Jesus Christ, we grow line upon line, becoming more like the Savior in loving and serving others. Priesthood and auxiliary leaders and teachers strive to help others become true followers of Jesus Christ see Mosiah — To assist individuals and families in this effort, they:.
Strengthen individuals and families in their efforts to keep their sacred covenants. In addition, certain priesthood leaders have the authority to oversee the performance of the saving priesthood ordinances. Sacred temple ordinances and covenants, faithfully kept, help us return to the presence of God, united eternally with our families. Exaltation in the highest degree of the celestial kingdom can be attained only by those who have faithfully lived the gospel of Jesus Christ and are sealed as eternal companions.
It is the foundation of an eternal family. The nature of male and female spirits is such that they complete each other. Men and women are intended to progress together toward exaltation. The Lord has commanded husbands and wives to cleave to each other see Genesis ; Doctrine and Covenants In this commandment, the word cleave means to be completely devoted and faithful to someone. Married couples cleave to God and one another by serving and loving each other and by keeping covenants in complete fidelity to one another and to God see Doctrine and Covenants A couple is to become one in establishing their family as the basis of a righteous life.
Latter-day Saint husbands and wives leave behind their single life and establish their marriage as the first priority in their lives. They allow no other person or interest to have greater priority in their lives than keeping the covenants they have made with God and each other. Nonetheless, married couples continue to love and support their parents and siblings while focusing on their own families.
Similarly, wise parents realize that their family responsibilities continue throughout life in a spirit of love and encouragement. Being one in marriage requires a full partnership. For example, Adam and Eve worked together, prayed and worshipped together, sacrificed together, taught their children the gospel together, and mourned over wayward children together see Moses , 4, 12, They were united with each other and with God. By divine design, both a man and a woman are essential for bringing children into mortality and providing the best setting for the rearing and nurturing of children.
Complete sexual abstinence before marriage and total fidelity within marriage protect the sanctity of this sacred responsibility.
Parents and priesthood and auxiliary leaders should do all they can to reinforce this teaching. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. When there is no father in the home, the mother presides over the family. Wise parents teach their children to apply the healing, reconciling, and strengthening power of the Atonement within their family. Each family member has a responsibility to strive for family unity. Children who learn to strive for unity at home will find it easier to do so outside the home.
All members, even if they have never married or are without family in the Church, should strive for the ideal of living in an eternal family. This means preparing to become worthy spouses and loving fathers or mothers. In some cases these blessings will not be fulfilled until the next life, but the ultimate goal is the same for all. Faithful members whose circumstances do not allow them to receive the blessings of eternal marriage and parenthood in this life will receive all promised blessings in the eternities, provided they keep the covenants they have made with God.
In the teachings and practices of the restored gospel, the family and the Church help and strengthen each other.
To qualify for the blessings of eternal life, families need to learn the doctrines and receive the priesthood ordinances that are available only through the Church. To be a strong and vital organization, the Church needs righteous families. God has revealed a pattern of spiritual progress for individuals and families through ordinances, teaching, programs, and activities that are home centered and Church supported. Church organizations and programs exist to bless individuals and families and are not ends in themselves. Priesthood and auxiliary leaders and teachers seek to assist parents, not to supersede or replace them.
For more information on home-centered and Church-supported curriculum, see 1. Priesthood and auxiliary leaders must endeavor to strengthen the sacredness of the home by ensuring that all Church activities support the lives of individuals and families. Church leaders need to be careful not to overwhelm families with too many Church responsibilities. Parents and Church leaders work together to help individuals and families return to our Father in Heaven by following Jesus Christ. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, ortransmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other—except for brief quotations in printed reviews, without the prior permission of the publisher.
Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved. I learned to let the bible talk about the issue of church planting, and be more submis- sive to its authority and guidance. It was an eye opening resource for me. By applying these principles, we are experiencing revival in our families and churches in Zambia, and it is spreading to surrounding countries. Now the church is looking and acting more like the early church in Acts.
You ask how and why? This manual is a powerful tool which contains biblical principles inspired by the living word of God which are applicable to personal life, family, church and mission especially to plant more new churches in new areas where none exist. I had a solid biblical and practi- cal teaching through Acts book.
It was a very fruitful time and as a fruit we put a strategy to plant three churches within three years; we started on January 1, I highly recommendthis book for personal use as well as for church group studies. It was a solid teaching built on the book of Acts and the principles used by Apostle Paul.
It gave me a new perspective and approach in the areas of evangelism and witness for the Lord Jesus Christ. When I used this manual in the ministry, I went from an educator to biblical church planter. The training method used to teach this manual is very simple.
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Each question presented makes the participants rely on the Holy Spirit to answer the truth from the Bible. The best thing about the manual is it is very practical. It is clear, complete and very useful in training church planters to establish new churches and to strengthen existing churches.
After getting to know and under- stand what God wants from me as a church planter, I now follow the plan of God. He is building His church today from district to state and from state to other countries.
This manual can help you discover that plan. It cuts through all the junk man has added over 2, years and goes right back to those timeless principles of the New Testament church. God has worked in my life through this book and I have seen him work in the lives of many in Bhutan.
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Our church is acting more like the one that the Scriptures talk about and many are blessed because of it. The author teaches the need to multiply churches and how to develop a sustaining church planting movement. His chart showing accelerators and inhibitors to a church planting movement was extremely helpful. Is it the manual itself? No, it is the effectiveness and simplicity of the material pointing the reader back to the scripture and focusing on the early church—how it started, how it grew, the structure, the family, how to handle discipline and develop leadership!
AcknowledgmentsI have developed this church planting manual to be used for the glory of our Lord and Savior,Jesus Christ! I am grateful for many church leaders who have been blessed by the previous edi-tions and revisions as well as the many translations of the Church Planting Manual used through-out the world. I want to particularly thank my dear brothers, Sherman Driver and Phil Largent,who have come along side and made this manual possible through their wisdom, encouragementand partnership in the gospel. Any revenuefrom this material will not be used for the personal gain of the author or anyone else.
ForewordOver the years, I have watched as God linked spiritually ready indigenous leaders with this train-ing manual. Tim Bunn has beencaptured by the Spirit of God and brought to develop this training manual out of decades of bibli-cally based, multi-cultural ministry. What you have in hand has been in use though in earlier forms for two decades by indigenousministry leaders in Asia and South America. It is in use in the USA as well.