Doctrine & Covenants/Church History
Lesson 23
“Seek Learning, Even by Study and Also by Faith”

Lesson Highlights

A study of this lesson will encourage us to learn “by study and also by faith” throughout our lives (D&C 88:118).

Scripture references for study:  Class Member Study Guide
    Note: Underlined scripture references have been hyperlinked to the LDS Scriptures at and will open in a new window.

Lesson 23 Handout (PDF)

A Latter-day Commitment To Education

The Kirtland Era

The School of the Prophets - A Pattern for Learning.

The School of the Elders was organized in November 1834. It replaced the School of the Prophets and was sometimes referred to as the same.

After the Kirtland Temple was completed (1836) the School for the Elders was reorganized under the name School of the Prophets.

In January 1836 a new class or school was created, called the Hebrew School.

The Kirtland School.

During the Kirtland era, other schools were established.

The Tradition Continues

As the early Church developed during the Kirtland era, education became a important part of life for the Saints. That commitment has continued forward from the Kirtland period.

Schools were erected in Independence and Far West.

Along with other schools established during the Nauvoo period, the Nauvoo charter included a provision for the University of the City of Nauvoo.

As the Saints evacuated Nauvoo, one might think that the entire focus would be on survival and the mechanics of the journey.

As publicly supported schools became more fully established in Utah, the Church began to close its academies. To supplement secular education with religious teaching, the Church established the seminary program.

Similar to the seminary program, the Church established the Institute of Religion, giving university students an opportunity to advance their religious education.

The Church now sponsors four institutions of higher education: Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah; Brigham Young University-Hawaii in Laie, Hawaii; Brigham Young University-Idaho in Rexburg, Idaho; and LDS Business College in Salt Lake City. The Church also sponsors a handful of schools in Mexico and in the islands of the Pacific.

At the April 2001 General Conference, President Hinckley announced the latest Church program to support education of LDS students through out the world.    

The Church has a long and wonderful tradition in education, both temporal and spiritual. I recall a college professor telling the class that the majority of university graduates do not complete reading a single book within five years after graduation. The Latter-day Saints have a much different attitude towards education. We not only support formal education, but the ongoing process of learning throughout one's life.

Seek Learning By Study & By Faith

"And as all have not faith, seek ye diligently and teach one another words of wisdom; yea, seek ye out of the best books words of wisdom; seek learning, even by study and also by faith." (D&C 88:118)

The Temple - The University of Eternity.

For additional information on this topic see Gospel Learning at

Gospel Doctrine Notebook

Record your thoughts on education and learning as discussed in this lesson. What can you do to further your education, both in temporal and spiritual topics?

Resources Used In This Lesson

Answers: Straightforward Answers To Tough Gospel Questions by Joseph Fielding McConkie.

Come Unto Christ by Ezra Taft Benson.

Conference Reports (CR).

Doctrines of Salvation by Joseph Fielding Smith.

Encyclopedia of Mormonism edited by Daniel H. Ludlow.


History of the Church (HC).

Learning for the Eternities by Marion G. Romney.

Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith (TPJS).

The Gospel Kingdom by John Taylor, edited by G. Homer Durham.

The Heaven's Resound:  A History of the Latter-day Saints in Ohio, 1830-1838, by Milton V. Backman, Jr.

The Holy Temple by Boyd K. Packer.

The Lord's Way by Dallin H. Oaks.

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Changes last made on:  10 April 2017