Is there a more important event in the history of the Earth than the resurrection of our Lord and Savior?
In speaking of the atonement of Jesus Christ, we often hear:
- In prayers
- In testimonies
- In General Conference
“I am grateful for the atoning sacrifice of our Savior,” or “We are grateful for Thy atoning sacrifice.” Often, His glorious resurrection is not mentioned or included in our gratitude for His infinite atonement. Most Christians look to His suffering on the cross to pay for their sins, as they believe in Him.
What Does the New Testament Teach Us?
Paul – 1 Corinthians 15:
17 And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
18 Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.
19 If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.
20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.
21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
The Savior Taught in John Chapter 5
26 For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.
28 Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
29 And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation.
Clearly, the infinite atonement includes the resurrection for all.
The Book of Mormon is Very Clear
Jacob (2 Nephi 9:) 6 For as death hath passed upon all men, to fulfill 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.
7 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. And if so, this flesh must have laid down to rot and to crumble to its mother earth, to rise no more.
8 O the wisdom of God, his mercy and grace! For behold, if the flesh should rise no more 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.
25 Wherefore, he has given a law; and where there is no law given there is no punishment; and where there is no punishment there is no condemnation; and where there is no condemnation the mercies of the Holy One of Israel have claim upon them, because of the atonement; for they are delivered by the power of him.
26 For the atonement satisfieth the demands of his justice upon all those who have not the law given to them, that they are delivered from that awful monster, death and hell, and the devil, and the lake of fire and brimstone, which is endless torment; and they are restored to that God who gave them breath, which is the Holy One of Israel.
Alma 42:21 And if there was no law given, if men sinned what could justice do, or mercy either, for they would have no claim upon the creature?
22 But there is a law given, and a punishment affixed, and a repentance granted; which repentance, mercy claimeth; otherwise, justice claimeth the creature and executeth the law, and the law inflicteth the punishment; if not so, the works of justice would be destroyed, and God would cease to be God.
23 But God ceaseth not to be God, and mercy claimeth the penitent, and mercy cometh because of the atonement; and the atonement bringeth to pass the resurrection of the dead; and the resurrection of the dead bringeth back men into the presence of God; and thus they are restored into his presence, to be judged according to their works, according to the law and justice.
Making Easter Paramount
As Christians, we celebrate Christ’s birth at Christmas. What a triumphant day it was when He was born. Humanity had waited for 4000 years for his arrival. Finally, Christ would fulfill his prophesied mission. For mankind, His perfect life taught us how to love and His infinite atonement gave us deliverance from death and hell, providing resurrection for all as He perfectly overcome the effects of the Fall of Adam and Eve. His infinite mercy allows us to overcome the spiritual death brought about by the Fall as we come unto Him in full faith and repent of all our sins.
Because of Him we will all be resurrected and live again. Because of Him we can now look forward to a New Jerusalem and a restored Old Jerusalem. Because Him we anticipate a pure in heart Zion society to be prepared to meet Him at His Second Coming, and for him to reign for a thousand years as King of kings and Lord of lords, as He prepares a people to be presented to the Father. Because of Him we will have a new heaven and a new earth. We cannot say enough good about He has done, is doing, and will do for Father’s children.
When we were in West Africa, we learned that the Muslims, the Jews, and the Christians celebrate a common holiday and are not aware that they all are celebrating the glorious resurrection of our Savior.
Careful scripture study reveals 49 steps to His infinite atonement: there are seven incredible steps and seven sub-steps — CAPSTONED with His Glorious Resurrection. Seven is the number of completeness or perfection in the Lords’ arithmetic.
Perhaps we should make Easter the pinnacle of all our celebrations, since there is no more important event in the history of the Earth.
May we make this Easter and every Easter hereafter our most celebrated holiday as we contemplate how His Glorious Resurrection brings us back into the presence of God. Celebrate by drawing closer to Him, contemplating the infinite atonement, its enormous blessings, studying His word, and being valiant in our testimony of what He has done, is doing, and will do.
I pray that we may replace the phrase, “atoning sacrifice” with “His infinite atonement,” which is the phraseology of President Nelson. We cannot comprehend in this mortal sphere His infinite atonement, but we can feel it to the core of our souls. We can rejoice in all that the Savior has done for us, is doing now, and will do as He brings us back into the presence of the Father. May we be true BELIEVERS in His infinite atonement, which includes His Glorious Resurrection, by living and sharing His message of gladness.
David W. Allan