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The Second Comforter

by Thomas E. Sherry

The term "Second Comforter" refers to Jesus Christ in his role of ministering personally to his faithful followers (John 14:21-23; D&C 93:1; 130:3). Jesus taught his disciples that the Holy Ghost was a comforter (John 14:26), but he also spoke of a second comforter (John 14:16-21). Latter-day Saints have been given additional understanding about the Second Comforter by the Prophet Joseph Smith:

After a person has faith in Christ, repents of his sins, and is baptized for the remission of his sins and receives the Holy Ghost (by the laying on of hands), which is the first Comforter, then let him continue to humble himself before God, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and living by every word of God, and the Lord will soon say unto him, Son, thou shalt be exalted. When the Lord has thoroughly proved him, and finds that the man is determined to serve Him at all hazards, then the man will find his calling and his election made sure, then it will be his privilege to receive the other Comforter, which the Lord hath promised the Saints, as is recorded in the testimony of St. John, in the 14th chapter, from the 12th to the 27th verses…

Now what is this other Comforter? It is no more nor less than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself; …when any man obtains this last Comforter, he will have the personage of Jesus Christ to attend him, or appear unto him from time to time, and even He will manifest the Father unto him, and they will take up their abode with him, and the visions of the heavens will be opened unto him, and the Lord will teach him face to face, and he may have a perfect knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of God; and this is the state and place the ancient Saints arrived at when they had such glorious visions—Isaiah, Ezekiel, John upon the Isle of Patmos, St. Paul in the three heavens, and all the Saints who held communion with the general assembly and Church of the First Born [TPJS, pp. 150-51].

The Lord has counseled his Saints to "seek his face" (D&C 101:37-38). No sinful person can endure his presence, and hence will not obtain the blessing (D&C 67:10-13; JST Ex. 33:11, 20). In God's wisdom, some faithful individuals are blessed with the Second Comforter while remaining in mortality.


McConkie, Bruce R. A New Witness for the Articles of Faith, pp. 492-99, 549. Salt Lake City, 1985.

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Vol. 2, Jesus Christ, Second Comforter

Copyright 1992 by Macmillan Publishing Company

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