Learn of Me

An Evening with Elder D. Todd Christofferson

Address to CES Religious Educators • January 26, 2018 • Salt Lake Tabernacle


 

I am grateful to be with you tonight. May I offer a word of love and appreciation to the teachers of the rising generation in seminary, institute, and religious education in the Church’s schools, colleges, and universities. I love you, and I am grateful for your wonderful work. I am also grateful for your families and the support they give you. You are a great blessing to the youth and young adults you teach.

Tonight I want to share a thought with you that I hope will be helpful as you seek to help your students learn deeply in the gospel of Jesus Christ. Deep learning in the gospel, learning of the whole heart and soul, occurs when our students increase in their power to do three things:

  1. 1.

    Grow in gospel knowledge and understanding, with their minds and their hearts.

  2. 2.

    Build on that knowledge to develop capacity for effective, righteous action.

  3. 3.

    Grow in Christlike attributes and character to become more and more like Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.

The Lord Jesus Christ extends an invitation to learn deeply in two scriptures. The first is Matthew 11:28–29: “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”1

The second is Doctrine and Covenants 19:23: “Learn of me, and listen to my words; walk in the meekness of my Spirit, and you shall have peace in me.”2

In both passages the Lord extends the invitation: learn of me. As Elder Neal A. Maxwell noted many years ago, this invitation is centered in the redeeming power of the Lord Jesus Christ, and it is an invitation to learn deeply. Elder Maxwell said: “There are many specific ways in which we can liken to ourselves … scriptures about Jesus and the Atonement, but all are covered under this conceptual canopy: ‘Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me.’3 In fact, there is no other way to learn deeply!”4

The only way to learn deeply is the Lord’s way—by revelation and inspiration through the power of the Holy Ghost, by active diligent study and effort, and by teaching one another attended by the grace of Jesus Christ.5

This means that the Savior’s invitation to “learn of me” has two interrelated meanings that correspond in a beautiful way to the Lord’s way to learn deeply.

The first meaning of “learn of me” is: Learn to know me.

We learn to know Jesus Christ by having faith in Him and turning to Him to repent, to seek His forgiveness and His redeeming power, and to keep His commandments. To know Him is to be spiritually born of Him, experiencing a mighty change of heart, becoming His sons and daughters. Learning to know Jesus Christ opens our hearts and minds to the influence of the Holy Ghost and brings us assurance of the Lord’s love.

The second meaning of “learn of me” is: Learn from me.

The Lord Jesus Christ knows exactly what we need. His knowledge and understanding, His intelligence and His character, are all perfect, complete. As we immerse ourselves in the scriptures, we learn from His perfect example. Because He is the personification of every divine attribute and characteristic, our gospel study should focus on Him. As we come to know Him, He promises to help us learn deeply from Him. Of course, we must act with faith in Jesus Christ to do our part, but as we do, He promises to give us knowledge and quicken our understanding through the Holy Ghost. He promises to magnify our capacity for righteous action and help us become more like Him. This is deep learning.

You and I know these things are true. If we are faithful, the Lord will teach us line upon line, precept upon precept all through our lives.

My dear brothers and sisters, I invite you to take to heart the Savior’s invitation to learn of Him. As you do, you will learn deeply, and you will help your students learn deeply too. I also invite you to bear witness in the first person of these eternal truths. It will be so powerful for your students to hear you bear witness of your own experience in knowing the Lord and learning from Him.

And so I close tonight my remarks with my own first-person witness. I know that God lives and that Jesus is the Christ! I know the Savior’s love and His redeeming power from my own experience and by revelation through the Holy Ghost. It is humbling and joyous to be taught by the Lord Jesus Christ. I testify that His promises are true. Deep learning is real, and it is our privilege and the privilege of our precious students. I so testify in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

© 2018 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. English approval: 11/17. Translation approval: 11/17. Translation of “Learn of Me.” Language. PD60005340 xxx

Show References

    Notes

  1.  

    1. Matthew 11:28–29.

  2.  

    2. Doctrine and Covenants 19:23.

  3.  

    3. Matthew 11:29.

  4.  

    4. Neal A. Maxwell, “Plow in Hope,” Ensign, May 2001, 61.

  5.  

    5. This pattern is established most clearly in Doctrine and Covenants 88. Please see verses 63–64, 67, 77–79, 118, 122, 125.