Doctrine and Covenants 54: Covenants and Consequences

Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Student Study Guide, (2005), 64


It can be disappointing and challenging when we strive to do the Lord’s will but the disobedience and wickedness of others make it difficult. A simple example of this might be attending a Church class, king to learn and feel the Holy Ghost, but the attitude and actions of others in the class make it difficult for you to have the kind of experience you hoped for.Doctrine and Covenants 54deals with a situation where a group of people striving to keep the Lord’s commandments are hindered because of the disobedient actions of others.In this study guide’s introduction toDoctrine and Covenants 51you read about a group of Saints from Colesville, New York, who settled in Thompson, Ohio, on the farm of Leman Copley. Brother Copley, after returning from a mission to the United Society of Believers in Christ’s Second Appearing (the Shakers; D&C 49), broke the covenant he had previously made to consecrate his land and refused to allow the Colesville Saints to settle on “his” property. Faithful Church members—especially the branch president, Newel Knight—sought the Lord’s guidance through the Prophet Joseph Smith regarding their situation. The revelations inDoctrine and Covenants 54and 56 came in response.

Understanding the Scriptures

Doctrine and Covenants 54

Stand fast(v. 2)Be faithful, keep serving 
Contrite(v. 3)Sorry for sin and willing to obey 
Void(v. 4)No longer valid or binding 
Tribulation(v. 10)Troubles, affliction 

Studying the Scriptures

Do activity A or B as you studyDoctrine and Covenants 54.

Activity A iconPut It in Perspective

Review the historical background toDoctrine and Covenants 54( the section heading and the introduction in this study guide). Notice how the Lord introduced Himself in verse 1.

  1. 1.

    What message do you think the Lord was sending to Leman Copley and the Colesville Saints by the way He introduced Himself?

  2. 2.

    How might this perspective affect your words, thoughts, and actions today?

Activity B iconThe Importance of Covenants

What doesDoctrine and Covenants 54teach about covenants? Consider the revelation’s historical background as you write your answer.