My name is Jared White, I am 50 years old and have been a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints my entire life. I have often been asked to share how I came to know that the Book of Mormon is the true word of God and another testament of Jesus Christ (just like the Holy Bible). It has been said that everyone must be “converted” to the truth of the Book of Mormon whether they are born into the church or are introduced to it later in life. I suppose this is true, but for me, the conversion process happened at a very early age. One of my earliest memories is sitting on my mother’s lap as she read the Book of Mormon to me. Although, I was only three or four years old, I remember clearly the impact of feeling the Holy Spirit testify to my young heart that what I was hearing was truth.
As I grew older, I never questioned my testimony of the truth of the Book of Mormon, as happens with many other adolescents… My testimony of its truthfulness just continued to grow as my study and knowledge of it increased. When I was a 19-year-old missionary called to serve in Guatemala, I remember challenging an investigator to read the Book of Mormon, and to pray and ask our Heavenly Father if it was true. I told them that I had read it many times (which I had) and that I had asked God in prayer if it was true (which I actually never had done), and that He had blessed me with the witness from the Holy Spirit that it was truly His word (which, again, was true, but not exactly as an answer to prayer). That night as I knelt down to say my prayers, I reflected on the “white” lie I had told that investigator. I remember telling God that I was almost ashamed to ask if the book was true, because I already knew that it was true. But I felt I had to do it, so as to be completely truthful when testifying to other people. After some anxiety over the possibility of offending God, I asked him in prayer.
I will never forget the awesome power of the Holy Spirit that came over me. What I experienced was not the “still, small, voice” of the Spirit that I had known all of my life. It was an almost consuming fire of confirmation! I felt the answer in such a powerful way as to penetrate my entire being and leave me weak and shaking… not with fear, but with awe.
Since that day, I have continued to grow in my knowledge of the Book of Mormon, and I can honestly say that my testimony has only grown stronger as to its truthfulness, although I have never again “asked” in prayer for further confirmation. I know it is true! It is the word of God! I am so thankful for that knowledge. Because of my testimony of the Book of Mormon, I know that Joseph Smith was truly a prophet of God, and that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is God’s true and living church. What a blessing the Book of Mormon has been in my life! From those tender days on my mother’s lap, to that wonderful night on my knees in Guatemala, until my middle-age… I have always been blessed to know that Jesus is the Christ, that He is my redeemer, and that testimony has come through the Spirit testifying to me that the Book of Mormon is true.