Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Atonement: The Very Root of Christian Doctrine

As Easter is approaching I am drawn to one of my favorite talks given by Thomas B. Griffith at a BYU Devotional in March 2006. It is called “The Very Root of Christian Doctrine.”
Introducing his topic, Brother Griffith quoted Elder Boyd K. Packer from a General Conference address titled “The Mediator.” In that address Elder Packer said:
“The Atonement of Christ is the very root of Christian doctrine. You may know much about the gospel as it branches out from there, but if you only know the branches and those branches do not touch that root, if they have been cut free from that truth, there will be no life nor substance nor redemption in them.”
Brother Griffith then confessed that he had taught many lessons that were, “although interesting and motivational, according to Elder Packer’s guide had ‘no life nor substance nor redemption in them’ because they weren’t directly linked to the Atonement of Christ.” Because of this revelatory insight, as a member of a newly called stake presidency, a rule was given to their stake that every Sacrament meeting talk and every lesson in Sunday School, Relief Society, and Priesthood meetings must be related to the Atonement of Christ in a direct and express way.
I pondered this counsel and wondered if I had thought to tie all lessons back to this “root” of the Atonement that Elder Packer described. I believe that I too may have fallen short of this instruction and have decided to conscientiously try to take this challenge.
I know that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is the greatest love story ever. Because of this great gift of love I have been given the possibility to return to live with my Father in Heaven. I am grateful for my Savior and Redeemer and understand that application of this gift is my choice. It is the root from which my Eternal Family Tree will be fed with the living waters of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the good news that He lived, He died, and He lives again.

Join me in taking the challenge extended by Brother Griffith, make sure you are teaching the very root of Christian Doctrine, the Atonement of Jesus Christ in all you do.


Mona said...

Hurray! Hurray! Thank you for this reminder to us all!

jcgk said...

I am desperately trying to get my hands on a copy of this article...every link I click on to get there gives me a window that says: webpage ccnnot be found. Do you have a copy saved as a file that you could send as an attachment?

Kathryn Skaggs said...

Great talk. Great reminder.

I often find it interesting on Easter Sunday, that many speakers address more the "atonement" versus the Resurrection, of which we are actually celebrating.

Perhaps if the Atonement were a constant topic of our meetings in general, this seeming need would not be so prevalent.

Just sayin;)