The first thing that we learn from the First Vision is that God speaks to His prophets in modern times and that the heavens are not silent.
- An essential truth we learn from the First Vision and the Prophet Joseph Smith is that God calls prophets, seers, and revelators to instruct, guide, warn, and lead us. These men are God’s mouthpieces on earth, with the authority to speak and act in the name of the Lord. By strictly following their counsel, we will be protected and receive choice blessings in our journey on this earth.
The second thing we learn from the First Vision is that God has a body of flesh and bone and that we are literally made in His image. He literally hears and answers our prayers and sends blessing to us from on high. We can grow to become like Him on earth and throughout eternity.
- Another truth we learn because of the First Vision and the Prophet Joseph Smith is the true nature of God. Just imagine how blessed we are to know that God is a being with a body of flesh and bones as tangible as ours, that we can worship a God who is real, whom we can understand, and who has shown and revealed Himself and His Son to His prophets—both prophets of old and prophets in these latter days. He is a God who hears and answers our prayers; a God who watches us from heaven above and is constantly concerned about our spiritual and temporal well-being; a God who gives us agency to decide for ourselves to follow Him and obey His commandments without coercion; a God who gives us blessings and allows us to face trials so we can grow and become like Him. He is a loving God who provided a plan through which we can enjoy happiness in this life and in eternity.
Finally, the third thing we learn from the First Vision is the divine mission of the Lord Jesus Christ. We know that Christ overcame death and sin through the atonement. We can once again return to live with God though the sacrifice that the Savior made for us.
- From the First Vision and the Prophet Joseph Smith, we received knowledge of the reality and sacred mission of the Lord Jesus Christ, who is the cornerstone of our religion. Because death was introduced into the world, as surely as we live now, we will all die one day. One of the effects of death would be the permanent loss of our physical body; we wouldn’t be able to do anything to reclaim it. In addition, because we all sin during our journey here on earth, we would never be able to return to our Heavenly Father’s presence. A Savior and Redeemer was needed to free us from death and sin. Under Heavenly Father’s direction, Jesus Christ came to earth, suffered, died on the cross, and was resurrected so that we too can be resurrected and, with sincere repentance and the making and keeping of sacred covenants, be once again in the presence of God.
These essential truths are doctrine of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They are the basis of our faith and our understanding of salvation. The Prophet Joseph Smith gave of light and knowledge that the world didn't understand in the grove of trees that day. Through his experience, we have so many blessings in our lives and we are able to act on the essential truths that he learned that day. I am grateful for the First Vision and have prayed to know that it was a real and personal vision for the Prophet. We are blessed today to have prophets that do the will of God.