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

February 4, 2018

Adversity, Hymns

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Abide with me! fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens. Lord, with me abide!
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me!

 

Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day.
Earth’s joys grow dim; its glories pass away.
Change and decay in all around I see;
O thou who changest not, abide with me!

 

I need thy presence ev’ry passing hour.
What but thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
Who, like thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Thru cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me!

Abide With Me, Hymns 166

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February 3, 2018

Hugo, Resurrection, Salvation

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I feel in myself the future lie. I am like a forest once cut down; the new shoots are stronger than ever. I am rising, I know, toward the sky. The sunshine is on my head. The earth gives me its generous sap, but heaven lights me with the reflection of unknown worlds.

You say the soul is nothing but the resultant of the bodily powers. Why then is my soul more luminous when my bodily powers begin to fail? The nearer I approach the end, the plainer I hear around me the immortal symphonies of the worlds which invite me. It is marvelous yet simple. It is a fairy tale, and it is history.

When I go down to the grave I can say, like so many others, I have finished my life. My day’s work will begin the next morning. My tomb is not a blind alley. It is a thoroughfare. It closes in the twilight to open in the dawn.

Victor Hugo
quoted by Lynne Watkins Jorgensen, “Begging to Be in the Battle: A Mormon Boy in World War I,” Journal of Mormon History 29:1 (Spring 2003): 133
(paragraph breaks added to enhance online readability)

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February 2, 2018

Faith, Nature of Christ, New Testament, Words of Christ

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Be not afraid, only believe.

Mark 5:36

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And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side.

And when they had sent away the multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with him other little ships.

And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full.

And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish?

And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm.

And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith?

Mark 4:35-40

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February 1, 2018

Eternal Life, Exaltation, General Authorities, Kimball

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The Lord restored his kingdom in these days, with all its gifts and powers and blessings. Any church that you know of may possibly be able to take you for a long ride, and bring you some degree of peace and happiness and blessing, and they can carry you to the veil and there they drop you. The Church of Jesus Christ picks you up on this side of the veil and, if you live its commandments, carries you right through the veil as though it weren’t there and on through the eternities to exaltation.

President Spencer W. Kimball
The Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 49–50, quoted in Chapter 1: “To Live with Him Someday”, Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Spencer W. Kimball, Salt Lake City, The Church of the Latter Day Saints, 2006

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January 31, 2018

Chastity, General Authorities, Holland, Repentance

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I have declared here the solemn word of revelation that the spirit and the body constitute the soul of man, and that through the Atonement of Christ the body shall rise from the grave to unite with the spirit in an eternal existence. That body is therefore something to be kept pure and holy. Do not be afraid of soiling its hands in honest labor. Do not be afraid of scars that may come in defending the truth or fighting for the right, but beware scars that spiritually disfigure, that come to you in activities you should not have undertaken, that befall you in places where you should not have gone. Beware the wounds of any battle in which you have been fighting on the wrong side.

If some few of you are carrying such wounds—and I know that you are—to you is extended the peace and renewal of repentance available through the atoning sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ. In such serious matters the path of repentance is not easily begun nor painlessly traveled. But the Savior of the world will walk that essential journey with you. He will strengthen you when you waver. He will be your light when it seems most dark. He will take your hand and be your hope when hope seems all you have left. His compassion and mercy, with all their cleansing and healing power, are freely given to all who truly wish complete forgiveness and will take the steps that lead to it.

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Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
Personal Purity,  Ensign, Nov 1998, 75

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January 30, 2018

C.S. Lewis, Repentance

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The instrument through which you see God is your whole self. And if a man’s self is not kept clean and bright, his glimpse of God will be blurred.

C.S. Lewis
Mere Christianity

Now I say unto you that ye must repent, and be born again; for the Spirit saith if ye are not born again ye cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven; therefore come and be baptized unto repentance, that ye may be washed from your sins, that ye may have faith on the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world, who is mighty to save and to cleanse from all unrighteousness.

Alma 7:14

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January 29, 2018

Covey, Scripture

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To daily and prayerfully read the scriptures will enable us to divide truth and error in our lives, to tear down the contention and the craftiness of men, to be like a rod of iron, guiding us along the path of righteousness.

And when the mists of darkness or the temptations of Satan surround us so that we cannot see that strait path, we can rely upon the scriptures and the counsel of our present prophets—the word of God—and we can can feast upon it every day of our lives.

 

Stephen R. Covey
BYU Speeches, Feb 22, 1966
(Paragraph break added to enhance online readability)

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January 28, 2018

Burton, General Authorities, Nibley

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Hugh W. Nibley depicts atonement in this manner: “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).”

The Meaning of the Atonement, p. 26, quoted in Rulon T. Burton, We Believe – Doctrines and Principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Tabernacle Publishing Company, 1994

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January 27, 2018

C.S. Lewis, Immortality

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There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations–these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit–immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.

This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of the kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously–no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption. And our charity must be real and costly love, with deep feeling for the sins in spite of which we love the sinners–no mere tolerance, or indulgence which parodies love as flippancy parodies merriment.

Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbor is the holiest object presented to your senses. If he is your Christian neighbour, he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat, the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden.

C.S. Lewis
The Weight of Glory

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January 26, 2018

Encyclopedia of Mormonism, Fundamental Principles, Holland

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The Encyclopedia of Mormonism is a work that was undertaken by a group of professors at Brigham Young University. While it is not recognized as official Church doctrine, the Encyclopedia has been cited on a number of occasions by General Authorities in general conference and is a highly-reliable non-doctrinal resource.

As I was reading the entry for Atonement, I noticed that Jeffrey R. Holland was the author. Elder Holland was the president of Brigham Young University when the Encyclopedia project was begun.

Following is an excerpt from Elder Holland’s essay on the Atonement:

The universal, infinite, and unconditional aspects of the Atonement of Jesus Christ are several. They include his ransom for Adam’s original transgression so that no member of the human family is held responsible for that sin (A of F 2; see Original Sin). Another universal gift is the resurrection from the dead of every man, woman, and child who lives, has ever lived, or ever will live, on the earth. Thus, the Atonement is not only universal in the sense that it saves the entire human family from physical death, but it is also infinite in the sense that its impact and efficacy in making redemption possible for all reach back in one direction to the beginning of time and forward in the other direction throughout all eternity. In short, the Atonement has universal, infinite, and unconditional consequences for all mankind throughout the duration of all eternity.

Emphasizing these unconditional gifts arising out of Christ’s atoning sacrifice, Latter-day Saints believe that other aspects of Christ’s gift are conditional upon obedience and diligence in keeping God’s commandments. For example, while members of the human family are freely and universally given a reprieve from Adam’s sin through no effort or action of their own, they are not freely and universally given a reprieve of their own sins unless they pledge faith in Christ, repent of those sins, are baptized in his name, receive the gift of the Holy Ghost and confirmation into Christ’s church, and press forward with a brightness of hope and faithful endurance for the remainder of life’s journey. Of this personal challenge, Christ said, “For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent; but if they would not repent they must suffer even as I; which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit-and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink” (D&C 19:16-18).

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland
The Atonement of Jesus Christ
The Encyclopedia of Mormonism
Macmillan Publishing, 1992

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