Gospel Ideals

Selections from the discourses of David O. McKay

Synopsis: Gospel Ideals is a collection of teachings taken from the discourses of David O. McKay, from the time of his call to the apostleship in 1906 to circa 1952, or just prior to the publication of the book in 1953.

Strong Points: This is an inspiring and often powerful book. It contains poignant teachings about home and family, liberty, patriotism, the Constitution, and anti-communism, education and the need to raise youth of character, and a host of other topics. The book is large and covers a very wide scope of topics. The book contains President McKay's signature mixture of scripture with classic literature and anecdotes, and often contains much that is philosophical in nature, though it is the philosophy of heaven. Most powerful and impressive to me was President McKay's powerful testimony of Jesus Christ and the Prophet Joseph Smith. I found reading this book to be highly sanctifying.

Weak Points: The book was printed in 1953 as a collection of the teachings of the new President of the Church, and therefore does not capture the vast majority of President McKay's long 19-year tenure as President of the Church. Many more significant teachings were yet to be given which were unfortunately not captured in this book. Also, some chapters are less interesting than others, like the one about "Ward Teaching."

Interesting: 3.9/5

Must Read: 4/5

Overall: 4.2/5

Selected Quote: "Brethren, I know as I know I am looking into your faces that the gospel of Jesus Christ is true and that he is my Savior, as real as he was when Thomas said, with bowed head, 'My Lord and my God!'" (p. 45).


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