Romans 6:23; “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
The Ministry of Prophets and Apostles Today, ‘Our Savior’s Atonement’, February 19, 2016 M. Russell Ballard, Apostle
Earlier this year, Mormon apostle Russell Ballard delivered a speech about the atonement of Christ. We’ve taken the main comments he made and used them in this article to expose how the Church erroneously defines the word ‘atonement’.
A link for the entire speech is provided above.
“…Thankfully, Jesus Christ courageously fulfilled this sacrifice in ancient Jerusalem. There in the quiet isolation of the Garden of Gethsemane, He knelt among the gnarled olive trees, and in some incredible way that none of us can fully comprehend, the Savior took upon Himself the sins of the world.
This isn’t true. According to Mormon doctrines, there are three sins that can’t ever be forgiven.
From our article Interesting Facts of the 3-in-1 –
Even though His life was pure and free of sin, He paid the ultimate penalty for sin—yours, mine, and everyone who has ever lived.
What penalty did the Mormon Jesus pay for when the Mormon people are still left with a laundry list of ‘must-dos’ in order to gain salvation?
As we stated in an article earlier this week, the stress from knowing what laid ahead would have done this, but bleeding like this did not constitute sacrificing His life. Remember beloved, scripture tells us a death must take place.
Hebrews 9:16; “For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.”
As horrible the anguish was for our dear Lord, He didn’t die in Gethsemane. He died at Calvary, the ‘place of the skulls’, aka, Golgotha.
And yet Jesus suffered willingly so that we might all have the opportunity to be washed clean—through having faith in Him, repenting of our sins, being baptized by proper priesthood authority, receiving the purifying gift of the Holy Ghost by confirmation, and accepting all other essential ordinances.
Yes, Jesus died willingly so that we can be washed clean, however, that is only for those who accept He is the Savior, not us!
Isaiah 64:6 tells us that our works are as filthy rags. The Hebrew word for this is ʿiddâ. It means ‘the menstrual flux (as periodical); by implication (in plural) soiling :- filthy’.
(See Strong’s Talking Greek & Hebrew Dictionary #H5708.)
“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.”
We pray the Mormon people will remember this is the worth of what they consider ‘works’.
Without the Atonement of the Lord, none of these blessings would be available to us, and we could not become worthy and prepared to return to dwell in the presence of God.
Those ‘blessings’ are the worthless works we just spoke about. How could this be a blessing???
I believe that if we could truly understand the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ, we would realize how precious is one son or daughter of God. I believe our Heavenly Father’s everlasting purpose for His children is generally achieved by the small and simple things we do for one another.
The atonement Jesus provided was all that was necessary for us to be found righteous in the eyes of God, thereby securing our salvation in Him! This isn’t about us, or what we can do. This is exclusively about the things Jesus Christ did for us when He was whipped and beaten, and then nailed on Calvary’s Cross!
At the heart of the English word atonement is the word one. If all mankind understood this, there would never be anyone with whom we would not be concerned, regardless of age, race, gender, religion, or social or economic standing.
If Mormons really believed this, why aren’t they out serving in the slums of America instead of trying to convert people who are already Christians? Why not go to countries who are known for worshiping Buddha, or other false gods?
Moreover, even though they’ve now ‘accepted’ blacks into their priesthood, why does their sacred canon still reflect the racist doctrines of Joseph Smith’s day? This includes the Book of Mormon, the book of Moses, and the book of Abraham.
We would strive to emulate the Savior and would never be unkind, indifferent, disrespectful, or insensitive to others…we would seek out the wayward boy and girl and every other wayward child of God. We would help them to know of the love Christ has for them. We would do all that we can to help prepare them to receive the saving ordinances of the gospel.
The Bible does give us a step-by-step plan on how to be saved! Here it is –
Romans 10:9-10; “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.”
Another most beneficial item in the Bible is known as the Romans Road to Salvation! Check it out!
I pray that you will seek to know the blessings of the Atonement and that you will strive to be worthy to serve the Lord in the mission field.
Specifically, how is one ‘blessed of the Atonement’?
The irony of the Atonement is that it is infinite and eternal, yet it is applied individually, one person at a time.
The true irony of the atonement is how it wasn’t performed in secret, nor was it done in a darkened Garden at nighttime. In keeping with the requirements of the Law, it was done in the morning, in a very public place, taking six hours to complete.
Never, never underestimate how precious is the one. Remember always the simple admonition of the Lord: “If ye love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). Always strive to live worthy of the sacred full blessings of the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. …
May you give to others and receive for yourselves every blessing the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ offers.
This is a sad, sad statement for the Mormon people! They must live an exemplary life so they can work for their salvation. How dismal for them. Worse yet is how they’ve shunned the work Jesus already did and have turned Him away with His most gracious offer to us. May God have mercy on each of them, and turn them from this blasphemous doctrine.
As it always the case, we’re asking you to come alongside us and pray for these dear people!
With Love in Christ;