The Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ is the heart and core and center of revealed religion.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie Christ and the Creation

The Holy Ghost is a sanctifier….

One who lives worthy of the guidance and cleansing influence of the Spirit will, in process of time, become sanctified.  Sanctification is the process whereby one comes to hate the worldliness he once loved and love the holiness and righteousness he once hated.  

To be sanctified is not only to be free from sin but also to be free from the effects of sin, free from sinfulness itself, the very desire to sin.  One who is sanctified comes to look upon sin with abhorrence (cf .Mosiah 5:2; Alma 13:12; Alma 19:33).

McConkie and Millet, Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, vol. 1, p. 263
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I think we must never lose sight of our Father’s transcendent declaration: “For behold, this is my work and my glory-to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39).

When all is said and done, this is the purpose of our being, to assist our Father in the accomplishment of His work and His glory. For this reason He sent His Son into the world to take upon himself the sins of the world, to offer his life in a wondrous atonement for those sins, to suffer and die upon the cross in a supreme sacrifice for the blessing of all mankind, to come forth triumphant from the tomb as the master of life and death, of mortality and immortality.

President Gordon B. Hinckley
General Authority Training Meeting, September 27, 1994
Included in Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley
Deseret Book Company, 1997

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October 16, 2016

Adversity, Hymns

Comments Off on I Am Thy God and Will Still Give Thee Aid

Fear not, I am with thee; oh, be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid.
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
Upheld by my righteous, upheld by my righteous,
Upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.

When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of sorrow shall not thee o’erflow,
For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee, and sanctify to thee,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.

When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
My grace, all sufficient, shall be thy supply.
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, thy dross to consume,
Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine.

This hymn draws extensively from Isaiah.  See Isaiah 41:10, 51:10, 1:23,25

How Firm a Foundation
Hymn 85

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October 15, 2016

General Authorities, Gratitude, Joseph F. Smith

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The grateful man sees so much in the world to be thankful for, and with him the good outweighs the evil. Love overpowers jealousy, and light drives darkness out of his life. Pride destroys our gratitude and sets up selfishness in its place. How much happier we are in the presence of a grateful and loving soul, and how careful we should be to cultivate, through the medium of a prayerful life, a thankful attitude toward God and man!

President Joseph F. Smith
Gospel Doctrine, 5th ed. [1939], 263

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October 14, 2016

Adversity, Charity, Enabling Power, General Authorities, General Conference, Maxwell

Comments Off on We need essential ordinances, but we also need essential attributes

Christ paid such an enormous, enabling price for us! Will we not apply His Atonement in order to pay the much smaller price required for personal progress? (see Mosiah 4:2).

Being valiant in our testimony of Jesus, therefore, includes being valiant in our efforts to live more as He lived (see D&C 76:79).

We certainly cannot enter His kingdom without receiving the restored ordinances and keeping their associated covenants, but neither can we enter His kingdom without having significantly developed our charity and the other cardinal attributes (see Ether 12:34).

Yes, we need the essential ordinances, but we also need the essential attributes. Yes, we need to keep our covenants, but we also need to develop our character.

Do we not sing, “More holiness give me,” pleading that we can be “more, Savior, like thee”? (Hymns, no. 131).

Elder Neal A. Maxwell
““Apply the Atoning Blood of Christ””, Ensign, Nov. 1997, 22
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October 13, 2016

Fundamental Principles, Nibley, Preexistence, Rescue

Comments Off on Volunteering to Go Down and Pay the Price

Joseph Smith took the gospel of Christ back even before Abraham to Adam and beyond, revealing the Atonement as “the plan of redemption … prepared from the foundation of the world” (Alma 12:30)—that is, when it was approved at the Council in Heaven. This event is often mentioned in the earliest Christian and Jewish literature, 13 one of the most notable texts being the “Discourse on Abbaton” by Timothy, Archbishop of Alexandria (circa a.d. 380). 14 When the plan was voted on, according to this account and others, it was turned down. The earth herself complained, as in the Book of Moses and other Enoch literature, of the defilement it would bring upon her, knowing the kind of inhabitants to come (see Moses 7:48–49); and the heavenly host objected to a plan that would cause such a vast amount of sin and suffering.

The Only Begotten broke the deadlock by volunteering to go down and pay the price. This opened the way; the plan could go forward; and the sons of God and the morning stars all sang and shouted for joy (see Job 38:7) in a great creation hymn that has left an indelible mark in ancient literature and ritual. The Lord had made it all possible, leaving men their agency, and obeying the Father in all things. But Satan and his followers refused to accept the majority vote; for that, Satan was deprived of his glory in a reversal of the ritual endowment and was cast out of heaven, which was the reverse of at-one-ment. 15

Only in such a context does the Atonement, otherwise so baffling, take on its full significance. There is not a word among those translated as “atonement” which does not plainly indicate the return to a former state or condition; one rejoins the family, returns to the Father, becomes united, reconciled, embracing and sitting down happily with others after a sad separation. We want to get back, but to do that, we must resist the alternative: being taken into the community of “the prince of this world.” (John 12:31.)

Hugh W. Nibley

“The Atonement of Jesus Christ, Part 2” Ensign, Aug 1990, 30

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October 12, 2016

Hymns, Tests

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We may not know, we cannot tell,
What pains he had to bear,
But we believe it was for us
He hung and suffered there.

There is a Green Hill Far Away

Hymn 194

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October 11, 2016

Adversity, General Authorities, General Conference, Monson

Comments Off on Enduring All Things and the Atonement

In a heart-wrenching account of the terrible difficulties encountered by a Latter-day Saint woman making her way as a refugee across war-torn Europe following World War II, President Monson quotes a prayer this woman offered after burying her baby daughter, the last of her children, in a grave that she dug with her bare hands.

“Dear Heavenly Father, I do not know how I can go on. I have nothing left—except my faith in Thee. I feel, Father, amidst the desolation of my soul, an overwhelming gratitude for the atoning sacrifice of Thy Son, Jesus Christ. I cannot express adequately my love for Him. I know that because He suffered and died, I shall live again with my family; that because He broke the chains of death, I shall see my children again and will have the joy of raising them. Though I do not at this moment wish to live, I will do so, that we may be reunited as a family and return—together—to Thee.”

President Thomas S. Monson

Be of Good Cheer,” Ensign, May 2009, 89–92

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October 10, 2016

General Authorities, General Conference, Jensen, Remembering

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We often speak of remembering our sacred covenants and God’s commandments and of remembering and performing saving ordinances for our deceased ancestors. Most importantly, we speak of the need to remember our Savior Jesus Christ and not just when convenient, but always, as He asks (See 3 Nephi 18:7, 11) We witness always to remember Him as we partake of the sacrament. In return, we are promised His Spirit will always be with us. Interestingly, this is the same Spirit sent by our Heavenly Father to “bring all things to [our] remembrance.” (John 14:26) Thus, by worthily receiving the sacrament, we are blessed by the Spirit to enter into a wonderfully beneficial circle of remembering, returning again and again in our thinking and devotion to Christ and His Atonement.

Elder Marlin K. Jensen
Remember and Perish Not,” Ensign, May 2007, 36–38

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October 9, 2016

Caring for the Poor, Charity, Mother Teresa

Comments Off on The Success of Love

The success of love is in the loving – it is not in the result of loving. Of course it is natural in love to want the best for the other person, but whether it turns out that way or not does not determine the value of what we have done.

Mother Teresa of Calcutta

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