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

November 11, 2017

Book of Mormon, Fundamental Principles, King Benjamin

Comments Off on This is the Means Whereby Salvation Cometh

The Book of Mormon is the Atonement Testament and few testify as well as King Benjamin.

6 I say unto you, if ye have come to a knowledge of the goodness of God, and his matchless power, and his wisdom, and his patience, and his long-suffering towards the children of men; and also, the atonement which has been prepared from the foundation of the world, that thereby salvation might come to him that should put his trust in the Lord, and should be diligent in keeping his commandments, and continue in the faith even unto the end of his life, I mean the life of the mortal body—

7 I say, that this is the man who receiveth salvation, through the atonement which was prepared from the foundation of the world for all mankind, which ever were since the fall of Adam, or who are, or who ever shall be, even unto the end of the world.

8 And this is the means whereby salvation cometh. And there is none other salvation save this which hath been spoken of; neither are there any conditions whereby man can be saved except the conditions which I have told you.

9 Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.

Mosiah 4:6-10

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October 31, 2017

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Fundamental Principles, Lyon, Repentance

Comments Off on Repentance – Central to God’s dealings With His Children

Repentance has been central to God’s dealings with his children since they were first placed on the earth. Old Testament prophets constantly called the children of Israel individually and collectively to repent and turn to God and righteous living from rebellion, apostasy, and sin. In New Testament times, the work of Jesus Christ on earth may be described as a ministry of repentance-that is, of calling on God’s children to return to their God by changing their thinking and behavior and becoming more godlike. The Savior taught, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” (Matt. 5:48). Christ’s apostles were called primarily to preach faith in Christ and to declare repentance to all the world (Mark 6:12). In modern times, few topics occur in the Lord’s revelations as pervasively as this one. He has given latter-day prophets and all messengers of his gospel repeated instructions to declare “nothing but repentance unto this generation” (D&C 6:9). The Prophet Joseph Smith identified repentance and faith in Jesus Christ as the two fundamental principles of the gospel (A of F 4). And the gospel itself has been called “a gospel of repentance” (D&C 13;84:27).

In modern as in earlier times, the term “repentance” literally means a turning from sin and a reversing of one’s attitudes and behavior. Its purposes are to develop the divine nature within all mortal souls by freeing them from wrong or harmful thoughts and actions and to assist them in becoming more Christlike by replacing the “natural man” (1 Cor. 2:14) with the “new man” in Christ (Eph. 4:20-24).

This process is not only necessary in preparing humans to return and live with God, but it enlarges their capacity to love their fellow beings. Those who have reconciled themselves with God have the spiritual understanding, desire, and power to become reconciled with their fellow beings. God has commanded all humans to forgive each other: “I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men” (D&C 64:10). As God shows his love by forgiving (“I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more”; Jer. 31:34), his children, as they forgive others, also reflect this love.

. . . .

Since repentance is an ongoing process in the mortal effort to become Christlike, the need for it never diminishes. It requires active, daily application as humans recognize and strive to overcome sin and error and in this way endure to the end. For this reason, the Lord has instituted a means whereby each person who has repented and entered into the baptismal covenant may renew it by partaking of the Sacrament in remembrance of him. This time of self-examination allows one to reflect on the promises made at baptism, which were to take Christ’s name upon oneself, to remember him always, and to keep his commandments. Thus, the process of repentance is kept alive by this frequent period of reflection as the participant partakes of symbols of Christ’s body and blood in remembrance of his sacrifice to atone for human sin.

James K. Lyon
Repentance
The Encyclopedia of Mormonism
Macmillan Publishing, 1992

As noted in previous posts, the Encyclopedia of Mormonism is not recognized as official Church doctrine, but is a respected source of well-informed commentary on doctrine.

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October 29, 2017

Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, General Conference, Grow

Comments Off on I Speak of the Miracle of the Atonement

I speak of the miracle of the Atonement.

The Messiah came to redeem men from the Fall of Adam. Everything in the gospel of Jesus Christ points toward the atoning sacrifice of the Messiah, the Son of God.

The plan of salvation could not be brought about without an atonement. “Therefore God himself atoneth for the sins of the world, to bring about the plan of mercy, to appease the demands of justice, that God might be a perfect, just God, and a merciful God also.”

The atoning sacrifice had to be carried out by the sinless Son of God, for fallen man could not atone for his own sins. The Atonement had to be infinite and eternal―to cover all men throughout all eternity.

Through His suffering and death, the Savior atoned for the sins of all men. His Atonement began in Gethsemane and continued on the cross and culminated with the Resurrection.

“Yea, … he shall be led, crucified, and slain, the flesh becoming subject even unto death, the will of the Son being swallowed up in the will of the Father.” Through His atoning sacrifice, He made “his soul an offering for sin.”

As the Only Begotten Son of God, He inherited power over physical death. That allowed Him to sustain His life as He suffered “even more than man can suffer, except it be unto death; for behold, blood cometh from every pore, so great [was] his anguish for the wickedness and the abominations of his people.”

Not only did He pay the price for the sins of all men, but He also took “upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.” And He took “upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, … that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.”

The Savior felt the weight of the anguish of all mankind―the anguish of sin and of sorrow. “Surely he has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows.”

Through His Atonement, He heals not only the transgressor, but He also heals the innocent who suffer because of those transgressions. As the innocent exercise faith in the Savior and in His Atonement and forgive the transgressor, they too can be healed.

There are times when each of us needs “relief from feelings of guilt that come from mistakes and sins.” As we repent, the Savior removes the guilt from our souls.

Elder C. Scott Grow
The Miracle of the Atonement, General Conference, April, 2011

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October 20, 2017

Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, General Conference, Hinckley

Comments Off on The Substance of Our Theology

“We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in His Son, Jesus Christ, and in the Holy Ghost” (Articles of Faith 1). This is our primary declaration of faith. We speak unabashedly of the living reality of the Lord Jesus Christ. We declare without equivocation the fact of His great act of Atonement for all mankind. That act brought assurance of universal resurrection and opened the way to exaltation in our Father’s kingdom.

This is the burden of our declaration to the world. It is the substance of our theology. It is the wellspring of our faith. Let no one ever say that we are not Christians.

President Gordon B. Hinckley

Our Testimony to the World,” Ensign, May 1997, 83

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October 19, 2017

Doctrine & Covenants, Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, Joseph Smith

Comments Off on Are sav’d by the very same Saviour of ours

I beheld round the throne holy angels and hosts,
And sanctified beings from worlds that have been,
In holiness worshipping God and the Lamb,
For ever and ever. Amen and amen.

And now after all of the proofs made of him,
By witnesses truly, by whom he was known,
This is mine, last of all, that he lives; yea, he lives!
And sits at the right hand of God on his throne.

And I heard a great voice bearing record from heav’n,
He’s the Saviour and only begotten of God;
By him, of him, and through him, the worlds were all made,
Even all that [careen] in the heavens so broad.

Whose inhabitants, too, from the first to the last,
Are sav’d by the very same Saviour of ours;
And, of course, are begotten God’s daughters and sons
By the very same truths and the very same powers.

Joseph Smith, commenting on Doctrine and Covenants 76, including verses 21-24

“A Vision,” Millennial Star, Aug. 1843, 51

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October 15, 2017

Faith, Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, General Conference, Holland, Trust

Comments Off on That introductory phrase, “come unto me,” is crucial

In this promise, that introductory phrase, “come unto me,” is crucial. It is the key to the peace and rest we seek. Indeed, when the resurrected Savior gave His sermon at the temple to the Nephites in the New World, He began, “Blessed are the poor in spirit who come unto me, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” . . . .

.

It seems clear that the essence of our duty and the fundamental requirement of our mortal life is captured in these brief phrases from any number of scenes in the Savior’s mortal ministry. He is saying to us, “Trust me, learn of me, do what I do. Then, when you walk where I am going,” He says, “we can talk about where you are going, and the problems you face and the troubles you have. If you will follow me, I will lead you out of darkness,” He promises. “I will give you answers to your prayers. I will give you rest to your souls.”

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Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
Broken Things to Mend,” April 2006 General Conference

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October 14, 2017

Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, General Conference, Grace, McConkie

Comments Off on The Most Transcendent Event That Ever Has or Ever Will Occur

I feel, and the Spirit seems to accord, that the most important doctrine I can declare, and the most powerful testimony I can bear, is of the atoning sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ.

His atonement is the most transcendent event that ever has or ever will occur from Creation’s dawn through all the ages of a never-ending eternity.

It is the supreme act of goodness and grace that only a god could perform. Through it, all of the terms and conditions of the Father’s eternal plan of salvation became operative.

Through it are brought to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. Through it, all men are saved from death, hell, the devil, and endless torment.

And through it, all who believe and obey the glorious gospel of God, all who are true and faithful and overcome the world, all who suffer for Christ and his word, all who are chastened and scourged in the Cause of him whose we are—all shall become as their Maker and sit with him on his throne and reign with him forever in everlasting glory.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie

The Purifying Power of Gethsemane,” Ensign, May 1985, 9

 

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October 12, 2017

Fundamental Principles, Grace, Jacob, Mercy

Comments Off on How Great the Holiness of our God!

The Prophet Jacob is one of the great theologians of the Atonement.

O how great the holiness of our God! For he knoweth all things, and there is not anything save he knows it. And he cometh into the world that he may save all men if they will hearken unto his voice; for behold, he suffereth the pains of all men, yea, the pains of every living creature, both men, women, and children, who belong to the family of Adam. And he suffereth this that the resurrection might pass upon all men, that all might stand before him at the great and judgment day. [2 Nephi 9:20–22]

For as death hath passed upon all men, to fulfil the merciful plan of the great Creator, there must needs be a power of resurrection, and the resurrection must needs come unto man by reason of the fall; and the fall came by reason of transgression; and because man became fallen they were cut off from the presence of the Lord. Wherefore, it must needs be an infinite atonement—save it should be an infinite atonement this corruption could not put on incorruption. Wherefore, the first judgment which came upon man must needs have remained to an endless duration. . . .

Now the first judgment which came upon man was “thou shalt surely die.” It involved both of those deaths, the death of the body and the death as to things pertaining to righteousness, which the scriptures call spiritual death.

O the wisdom of God, his mercy and grace! For behold, if the flesh should rise no more [that is, if there were no resurrection of the body] our spirits must become subject to that angel who fell from before the presence of the Eternal God, and became the devil, to rise no more. And our spirits must have become like unto him, and we become devils, angels to a devil, to be shut out from the presence of our God, and to remain with the father of lies, in misery, like unto himself. . . .

O how great the goodness of our God, who prepareth a way for our escape from the grasp of this awful monster; yea, that monster, death and hell, which I call the death of the body, and also the death of the spirit. [2 Nephi 9:6–10]

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October 1, 2017

Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, General Conference, Packer

Comments Off on Packer – The Very Root of Christian Doctrine

[The Atonement of Christ] is the very root of Christian doctrine. You may know much about the gospel as it branches out from there, but if you only know the branches and those branches do not touch that root, if they have been cut free from that truth, there will be no life nor substance nor redemption in them.

Elder Boyd K. Packer

The Mediator,” Ensign, May 1977, 54

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September 25, 2017

Eternal Life, Fundamental Principles, General Authorities, Hinckley, Sacrifice

Comments Off on The Fact of All Life is that It is Eternal

The fact of all life is that it is eternal. That’s the great, salient truth. We have come into the world for a purpose, under a divine plan, and when we conclude this life we will go on to something that will be better, if we live worthy of it. And that great eternal course which we may follow is made possible through the sacrifice of the Son of God.

President Gordon B. Hinckley
Charlotte North Carolina Regional Conference, priesthood leadership session, February 24, 1996
Included in Teachings of Gordon B. Hinckley
Deseret Book Company, 1997

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