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

By , on November 2, 2015

Faith, General Authorities, Maxwell, Obedience

[T]he idea of straightness or exactitude appears in a number of scripture passages as a reflection of universal laws with predictability about what obedience or disobedience to the laws will produce. Ambiguity is not a helpful thing; God has repeatedly and clearly advised us as to what we must do in order to have eternal life – and in order for us to escape the miseries of sin and the inadequacies of self that the gospel of Jesus Christ is designed to help us overcome.

We cannot help others in salvational terms unless we ourselves are on the straight path. Having found the only passage to eternal life and exaltation, we should behave tolerantly and lovingly as vital guides who have found (sometimes at great pain and sacrifice) the solitary corridor to salvation and who must show others the way. There will be bitter irony if the guides end up following the meandering multitudes, for to follow the multitudes is to fail them. To leave our posts is a special kind of desertion.

It is natural in a world filled with so many individuals, of whom such a small portion has found the way, that we should wonder why it is that we are so fortunate. Why me? Why us?

. . . .

[T]he simplicity of the saving messages of Jesus Christ poses a special paradox for many people: “… because of the simpleness of the way, or the easiness of it, there were many who perished.” (1 Ne. 17:41.) Alma (Alma 37:46) warns us not to be “slothful because of the easiness of the way.” Jacob (Jacob 4:14) comments on the human folly of those who are always “looking beyond the mark,” who desire ecclesiastical embroidery on the simple gospel messages. We need to avoid complicating the content of Christ’s clarion call to mankind.

Elder Neal A. Maxwell
On the Straight and Narrow Way“, New Era, Aug. 1971, 42
Elder Maxwell was Church Commissioner of Education when this article appeared

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