(Disclaimer: These views are all based on my knowledge and interpretation as an active Latter Day Saint, or “Mormon”, only the actual article of faith I list should be considered “official”. Still, I try to be accurate and do my homework 😉
We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.
Surely one of the most beautiful of beliefs and refreshing of realizations is the reality of the Atonement. The third Article of Faith is meant to address the efficacy of the Atonement, and the profound role it plays in our lives.
We believe that through the atonement of Christ all mankind may be saved… ALL mankind! What more encouraging words could you possibly encounter?
That tells me that no matter where I am in life, no matter how far astray I may have gone, no matter what I’ve done, the atonement of Christ can save me from my sins.
How often Satan – ever our adversary – seeks to engulf us in the belief that we’ve gone too far, or done too much. Enveloped with despair he tries to overwhelm us with our past, and blind us to the hope to which we are entitled because of the atonement. But such is not the case. Hope is ever ours to have.
Through the crucifixion of Christ and his unimaginable suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane, He took upon himself the sins of the world, the sins of you and me. All this that we might not have to pay the price for those sins – for indeed a price there must be, for mercy cannot rob justice.
But herein enters an important principle, the second part of this article of faith. While the resurrection of Christ makes it possible for all mankind to be resurrected, a free gift with no prerequisite price to pay from us, the atonement of Christ is ours to have also, but is conditional.
For us to benefit from the Atonement, for us to “be saved”, we must first acknowledge and accept the Savior and His sacrifice. He has cast us the lifeline, but we must exert ourselves to grab hold. Said so simply, it sounds easy, but it requires genuine humility, which proves ever difficult for all.
And it doesn’t stop there… a portion of this principle that creates an unmistakable and compelling distinction between Mormonism and most other Christian beliefs. The notion that after we have accepted Christ, and been baptized in His name, we must continue in the faith, abounding in good works, keeping the commandments of God, and continually repenting along the way.
But a life so led, where one struggles to stay on the path as he is frequently beset by the inevitable mistakes of mortality, is one that is acceptable in the eyes of God, and is one that leads to salvation. We must first grab hold, and then endure to the end.
If you’ve enjoyed this post, please bookmark it by clicking on the button below, and selecting a service so others can find it too. Many thanks.