Elder Bruce R. McConkie is particularly known for his forceful testimony of Jesus Christ. However, his witness of the prophet Joseph Smith was also especially powerful.
In April 1976, he put the question of whether Joseph truly was a prophet into stark relief:
All men may well ask themselves where they stand with reference to Joseph Smith and his divine mission. Do they inquire after his name and seek that salvation found only in the gospel of Christ as revealed to his latter-day prophet, or do they deride and despise the Lord’s living oracles and say that God no longer speaks to men in the way he did anciently? The great question which all men in our day must answer–and that at the peril of their own salvation–is: Was Joseph Smith called of God?
Ultimately, all seekers of Christ must decide for themselves whether Joseph was a prophet of God. For our day, Joseph Smith was the prophet of the restoration and restored fundamental truth necessary to help us truly know Christ. Even though salvation only comes through Christ, without his servants we would not truly be able to understand Christ. This is truly the great question, because if answered in the affirmative, everything else follows.
Or at least it did for me. My testimony of Joseph Smith was a foundational building block in developing faith in the modern prophets and in the Church. I’m grateful for the powerful witness I received that Joseph was a prophet and for the countless reassurances I have experienced since then.