LILY Letter 141: Wrapping Up the New Testament

December 19, 2023

Early on in our courtship, Jeff referred to us as "New Testament" Mormons (before President Nelson asked that we become more deliberate about using the official name of the church). Cathy had never come up with that name for her approach to membership in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but it seemed to fit.

We do not bring up this terminology because we believe in hyphenated discipleship or factions in the church, nor because we prefer the New Testament to other books of scripture. The word "testament" can also be translated to "covenant." We call those books written in and shortly after the time of Jesus Christ the New Testament because they explain the new covenant made effective by the atonement of Jesus Christ. The gospel of repentance and forgiveness replaces strict adherence to complex rules and carnal commandments. A legal code encompassing a large number of stringent regulations is replaced by the inner commitment to love God with everything we have and everything we are, and to love our neighbors as ourselves.

For us, being New Testament Latter-day Saints simply means that: (1) we focus more on the atonement of Jesus Christ, love, forgiveness, and mercy toward others than on trying to attain technical perfection in a wide array of duties and performances; and (2) we embrace the expansive view of truth set forth by the prophet Joseph Smith when he said, "One of the grand fundamental principles of Mormonism is to receive truth, let it come from whence it may."

As we have studied the New Testament individually and as a family this year, we have been inspired with repeated reminders that we will receive the mercy we extend to others (Matt 5:7, 6:12-14, 7:1-5, 12; James 2:13-18). We all need mercy so this is a gospel of good news!

Many of us who have been divorced have felt the condemnation of those around us, much like the sinners and tax collectors of Jesus' time who he was condemned for dining with (Matt 9:10-17). We, in turn, must be ever vigilant not to be judgmental or harsh toward others who suffer, even if our human wisdom tells us they have brought it on themselves. (We are often wrong when we think this.)

As we enter this coming year and focus more intensely on the Book of Mormon: another testament of Jesus Christ, let us remember a faith founded on the gospel of repentance through the atonement of Jesus Christ, a moral code based on a change of heart toward loving God and our fellow beings, and embracing truth wherever we find it.

Merry Christmas & Happy Holidays 2023!

Love, Jeff & Cathy Teichert

NEW PODCAST

Jeff & Cathy discuss an endearing term they nick-named themselves while dating and the process of reading the entire New Testament as a family in 2023 as part of the Come Follow Me program for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

LINK TO LISTEN: New Testament Latter-day Saints

Enjoy other FREE holiday podcasts & videos we created for you. We love you and wish you a joyful holiday season!

WEBINAR REPLAY: Life & Relationships in 2024

LILY POD: Keeping Christ in Christmas

CHRISTMAS MUSIC: Away in a Manger - Violin Solo

CHRISTMAS MUSIC: Still, Still, Still - Stars Were Gleaming

CHRISTMAS MUSIC: O Come O Come Emmanuel - Violin Solo

LILY TUBE: Am I Lying to My Children About Santa?

LILY TUBE: Single Parenting & The Holidays

LILY TUBE: Creating New Love in the Holidays

LILY TUBE: Divorce & The Holidays

To heal from relationship loss and create more love in your life, read Intentional Courtship (available on Amazon).

LILY Coaching is available to support you personally. Simply visit loveinlateryears.com to schedule a FREE Consult with Jeff or Cathy. We will provide you with a roadmap to your desired destination!

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