14) JUSTIFICATION: What is the role of the Holy Ghost in justification?

Prophetic Statements

Joseph Smith

“The nearer man approaches perfection, the clearer are his views, and the greater his enjoyments, till he has overcome the evils of his life and lost every desire for sin;” [1]

Scripture

D&C 132:7

Moses 6:60

Supporting Statements

“What then is the law of justification? It is simply this: “All covenants, contracts, bonds, obligations, oaths, vows, performances, connections, associations, or expectations” [2], in which men must abide to be saved and exalted, must be entered into and performed in righteousness so that the Holy Spirit can justify the candidate for salvation in what has been done. [3] An act that is justified by the Spirit is one that is sealed by the Holy Spirit of Promise, or in other words, ratified and approved by the Holy Ghost. This law of justification is the provision the Lord has placed in the gospel to assure that no unrighteous performance will be binding on earth and in heaven, and that no person will add to his position or glory in the hereafter by gaining an unearned blessing.

As with all other doctrines of salvation, justification is available because of the atoning sacrifice of Christ, but it becomes operative in the life of an individual only on conditions of personal righteousness.” [4]


  1. Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, selected and arranged by Joseph Fielding Smith [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1976], 51
  2. D&C 132:7
  3. 1 Nephi 16:2 ; Jacob 2:13-14 ; Alma 41:15 ; D&C 98; 132:1, 62
  4. Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 2d ed. [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1966], 408

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