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The New and Everlasting Covenant - Insight Into D&C 132
TitleThe New and Everlasting Covenant - Insight Into D&C 132
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsBlack, Susan Easton
Book TitleRestoration Voices Volume 2: Insights and Stories of the Doctrine and Covenants
Volume2
Number of Volumes2
Chapter132
PublisherBook of Mormon Central
CitySpringville, UT

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God the Father established the new and everlasting covenant to enable us to return to His presence and inherit eternal life. In the preface to the Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord said, “Wherefore, I the Lord, knowing the calamity which should come upon the inhabitants of the earth, called upon my servant Joseph Smith, Jun., and spake unto him from heaven ... that mine everlasting covenant might be established” (D&C 1:17, 22). The covenant, referred to as the “new and everlasting covenant,” encompasses the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ, which includes all covenants and ordinances for the salvation of man.

In the gospel vernacular, a covenant is an “agreement between God and a person (or persons) who receives priesthood ordinances performed by one with priesthood authority and who agrees to abide by the terms and conditions of the associated covenant.”[1] The new and everlasting covenant is defined as “the sum total of all gospel covenants” participated in anciently and restored in the latter days.[2] Because the covenant has been restored in the last days, it is “new,” and because it continues through eternity, it is “everlasting.”

In the Doctrine and Covenants we learn that baptism is “a new and an everlasting covenant, even that which was from the beginning” (D&C 22:1). In Doctrine and Covenants 132:4, eternal marriage is referred to as “a new and an everlasting covenant.” Yet as Elder Marcus B. Nash wrote, “Neither baptism nor eternal marriage is the new and everlasting covenant; rather, they are each parts of the whole.”[3]

The promise for all who enter into the new and everlasting covenant and keep their covenants is “[They] shall come forth in the first resurrection ... and shall inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, all heights and depths” (D&C 132:19). Of the promises of the new and everlasting covenant, Elder Nash said,

The supernal blessings available through the new and everlasting covenant are central to the grand purpose of the Father’s plan and the Restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ in these latter days. The “perfect brightness of hope” this glorious covenant inspires in the faithful provides “an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God” [Ether 12:4; D&C 59:23]. For all who abide the terms of the new and everlasting covenant, the reward is joy and peace in this world and eternal life in the next.[4]

Elder Richard G. Scott, in his general conference address in April 2009, spoke of the personal value of the new and everlasting covenant:

We had the blessing of having children. A daughter, the first child, continues to be an enormous blessing in our lives. A couple of years later a son we named Richard was born. A few years later a daughter was born. She died after living only a few minutes.

Our son, Richard, was born with a heart defect. We were told that unless that could be cured, there was little probability that he would live more than two or three years. This was so long ago that techniques now used to repair such defects were unknown. We had the blessing of having a place where doctors agreed to attempt to perform the needed surgery. The surgery had to be done while his little heart was beating.

The surgery was performed just six weeks after the birth and death of our baby daughter. When the operation finished, the principal surgeon came in and said it was a success.

And we thought, “How wonderful! Our son will have a strong body, be able to run and walk and grow!” We expressed deep gratitude to the Lord. Then about 10 minutes later, the same doctor came in with an ashen face and told us, “Your son has died.” Apparently the shock of the operation was more than his little body could endure.

Later, during the night, I embraced my wife and said to her, “We do not need to worry, because our children were born in the covenant. We have the assurance that we will have them with us in the future. Now we have a reason to live extremely well. We have a son and a daughter who have qualified to go to the celestial kingdom because they died before the age of eight.” That knowledge has given us great comfort. We rejoice in the knowledge that all seven of our children are sealed to us for time and all eternity.[5]

[1] Marcus B. Nash, “The New and Everlasting Covenant,” Ensign, December 2015.

[2] Bruce R. McConkie, Doctrines of Salvation: Sermons and Writings of Joseph Fielding Smith, 3 vols. (Salt Lake City, UT: Bookcraft, 1956), 1:156.

[3] Nash, “The New and Everlasting Covenant,” December 2015.

[4] Nash, “The New and Everlasting Covenant,” December 2015.

[5] Richard G. Scott, “Temple Worship: The Source of Strength and Power in Times of Need,” Ensign, May 2009.

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Scripture Reference

Doctrine and Covenants 132:6

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