What Does It Mean to Be Steadfast?

After the people of King Benjamin prayed and received a remission of their sins, they made a covenant with God to obey His commandments for the rest of their lives. King Benjamin told them that they were now the children of Christ, and he urged them to follow through consistently on the promises they had made:

I would that ye should be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in good works, that Christ, the Lord God Omnipotent, may seal you his, that you may be brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life, through the wisdom, and power, and justice, and mercy of him who created all things, in heaven and in earth, who is God above all. Amen (Mosiah 5:15)

These words are similar to an admonition the Apostle Paul would later give to members of the church in Corinth after teaching them about the resurrection: “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58).

In Old English, the word stede meant “place or position.” The word fæst meant “firmly fixed,” “constant,” or “fortified.” So the compound word stedefæst meant “secure in position, steady, firm in its place” (See “steadfast,” Online Etymology Dictionary.)

The word “steadfast” (or “steadfastness” or “steadfastly”) appears 16 times in the Book of Mormon, always in reference to followers of Christ.

  • Lehi named a valley after his son Lemuel, urging him to be steadfast like the valley, “firm…and immovable in keeping the commandments of the Lord” (1 Nephi 2:10).
  • Nephi challenged his readers to “press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men” (2 Nephi 31:20).
  • King Benjamin admonished his people to stand “steadfastly in the faith of that which is to come” (Mosiah 4:11).
  • Alma told the members of the church in Zarahemla that the Savior would take away the sins of every person “who steadfastly believeth on His name” (Alma 5:48).
  • Samuel the Lamanite contrasted the fickleness of the Nephites with the steadfastness and firmness of the Lamanites when they were converted (Helaman 15:8-10). (See also 3 Nephi 6:14.)
  • When the Savior visited the American continent, the people “looked steadfastly toward heaven.” They later “[looked] steadfastly upon him” hoping He would stay a little longer. The following morning, they prayed “steadfastly, without ceasing” (3 Nephi 11:5, 3 Nephi 17:5, 3 Nephi 19:30).
  • Moroni taught that faith and hope provide our souls with an anchor which make us “sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God” (Ether 12:4).

Today, I will strive to be steadfast in my faith. I will remember that the Savior will continue to bless me as I exercise faith in Him over time. I will strive to be a dependable disciple—reliably looking toward Him and anchored firmly to His gospel.

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