Elder Tyson Walker
28 April 2011
The Atonement and the Doctrine of Christ
The Atonement of Jesus Christ is the foundation to all happiness and to my purpose as a His representative. My commission is to bring the message of salvation and the doctrine of eternal joy to my brothers and sisters; I do this by fulfilling my purpose of “inviting others to come unto Christ…through…Jesus Christ and His Atonement.” The Atonement, although difficult to define, is our means of receiving eternal life with the Supreme Creator; God, our loving Heavenly Father.
I heard this quote by Elder McConkie, "the Atonement isn't apart of the gospel, it is the gospel." The Atonement is central to God's plan and to the gospel of Jesus Christ. We’ve been trained on a principle from Elder Hallstrom of the presidency of the Seventy of how important our purpose is in fulfilling the plan of the Atonement. He teaches us, the doctrine of Christ or the missionary purpose is: faith in the Atonement, repentance through the Atonement, baptism because of the Atonement, and receiving the cleansing power of the Holy Ghost by the Atonement. This is our great purpose; when we fulfill this purpose it is then that we are one with the Godhead. Remember Christ's words, "If ye are not one ye are not mine." (D&C 38:27)
I've recently studied in 2 Nephi 25 and I love verse 20 that reads, "...as the Lord God liveth, there is none other name given under heaven save it be this Jesus Christ, of which I have spoken, whereby man can be saved." I testify of what the prophet Nephi has said that it is only through Him, by Him, and of Him that we can be saved.
May we all increase our testimony of the Atonement and the Savior Jesus Christ. The promise is real in Preach my Gospel that as our testimony of the Atonement increases our desire to share the restored gospel with others will increase.
This knowledge has helped me internalize my purpose as I strive to understand the Atonement for myself. I too must invite myself to the same purpose as those I interact with. I am a witness that from the past 18 months of my life as a full-time missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints my desire to share the restored gospel has indeed increased as my knowledge of what my Savior has done for me increased. Because of the Atonement I am here today standing as His witness in word and deed.
I testify as His witness that Jesus Christ is the living Son of the living God; He truly lives and reigns. The Savior is our Master, our Redeemer, our Lord, and our God. I know that by following His example we can and will find peace in this life and eternal joy in the life to come. His Atonement is real and because it is real we too will live again and become perfect spiritually, after all we can do, and physically because we have followed Him before. The best feeling in the world is to testify that God is our loving Heavenly Father and that Jesus is His son; the reason this is the best feeling in the world is because the Spirit will testify to each of us time and time again that this is true.
I leave you with the words of Elder Holland who says, "may we stand by Jesus Christ 'at all times and in all things, and in all places that [we] may be in, even until death,' for surely that is how He stood by us when it was unto death and when He had to stand entirely and utterly alone."
In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.