Given the available evidence, the most likely date that Joseph Smith experienced the First Vision was on Sunday, March 26, 1820. Two hundred years ago today Joseph Smith walked into a woods with a sincere heart and a burning question. When he emerged from the woods, the world would never be the same again!
“Joseph Smith marveled at the unexpected revelation that opened the skies in 1820, and its promise still stands, giving us reason to marvel, too, that the Restoration rolls forth with us and through us, that any one of us can seek for and taste open visions, revelation, inspiration, guidance, and knowledge of God. The promise of the First Vision is that we are just getting started. The invitation of the First Vision is that the story is still unfolding. The challenge the First Vision poses to us is that we add line upon line, precept upon precept as we follow the humble example of Joseph Smith, who sought in childlike and pleading expectation the wisdom that comes only from the Father of our souls.” (Taylor Halverson and Lisa Halverson Beautiful Truths from the First Vision, Covenant Communication, Inc., 2020, p. 1)
Joseph’s vision taught us so many beautiful truths. We know that God lives. We know that His Son Jesus Christ is our Savior. We know that God hears and answers prayers. We know that God has a plan for us. We know that God is intimately aware of our lives and is personally concerned with us. We learned that God loves us.
To honor this transformative event, my wife Lisa Halverson and I recently wrote and released a new book called Beautiful Truths from the First Vision (available at Deseret Book). This book is filled with stunning visual imagery, inspiring quotes, and beautiful prose to celebrate Joseph’s First Vision. The team at Covenant Communication was incredible in what they pulled off!
During this bi-centennial year of reflection, we hope you feel hope and encouragement that God is still pouring out light and truth through visions and revelation.
And we hope you reflect on how your life is immeasurably better because of the First Vision.