“Be Peaceable Followers of Christ”

Elder Quentin L. Cook

2023 October General Conference

“I love the words of Mormon, quoted by his son Moroni, commending “the peaceable followers of Christ … because of your peaceable walk with the children of men.” For those of us in the Church striving to be peaceable followers of Christ, a brighter day awaits us as we focus on our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Trials are a part of mortality and occur in everyone’s life throughout the world. This includes major conflicts between countries and individuals.

Church leaders are frequently asked, “Why does a just God allow bad things to happen, especially to good people?” and “Why are those who are righteous and in the Lord’s service not immune from such tragedies?” We do not know all the answers; however, we do know important principles that allow us to face trials, tribulation, and adversities with faith and confidence in a bright future that awaits each of us. 

No better example exists in scripture with respect to passing through tribulation than the word of the Lord to Joseph Smith, the Prophet, while he was a prisoner in Liberty Jail. The Lord in part declared: “If the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.

“The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he? “… Fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever.” It is clear we have a Father in Heaven who knows and loves us personally and understands our suffering perfectly. His Son, Jesus Christ, is our Savior and Redeemer.

President Russell M. Nelson and President M. Russell Ballard have both strongly emphasized the significance of the new second edition of Preach My Gospel. I share their enthusiasm. This new edition, amplifying sacred scripture, powerfully proclaims: “In His atoning sacrifice, Jesus Christ took upon Himself our pains, afflictions, and infirmities. Because of this, He knows ‘according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities’ (Alma 7:12; see also verse 11). He invites, ‘Come unto me,’ and as we do, He gives us rest, hope, strength, perspective, and healing (Matthew 11:28; see also verses 29–30).

“As we rely on Jesus Christ and His Atonement, He can help us endure our trials, sicknesses, and pain. We can be filled with joy, peace, and consolation. All that is unfair about life can be made right through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.”

We can joyfully be peaceable followers of Christ. Our Father’s plan of happiness for His children includes not only a premortal and mortal life but also a potential for eternal life, including a great and glorious reunion with those we have lost. All wrongs will be righted, and we will see with perfect clarity and faultless perspective and understanding.”