Monday, January 19, 2009

Infinite Atonement

What exactly does the word infinity mean? I have heard from great men who teach that "infinite" implies the overcoming of time and space.

Jesus Christ suffered for the pain of all mankind, from Adam to the new born baby who was born 10 seconds ago. His Atonement passes all time.

It's also true that the atonement reaches to all mankind, from the island dweller to the city folk. It also reaches to all of God's children across the universe. His Atonement surpasses all space.

Put these thoughts aside for a moment and think about another example that deals with 'infinity'. What does infinity really mean? It defines a measurement with no beginning and no end. Incomprehensible, right? Suppose one were to add 10 units to infinity. What would be the result? Infinity. Suppose one were to add 10 million units to infinity. What then would be the result? Still infinity. Again, Darin has provided me with an insightful example:

Suppose that each individual on the earth can accomplish good, and we begin to rate ourselves based upon the good we do. The vilest of sinners will be a 1, and the most holy, unselfish person will be a 10. I probably stand somewhere around a 5. It's fairly depressing to begin comparing our personal numbers to the numbers of those around us. I suppose you would feel really good about yourself if you were a 7--because you are 2 points better than I am! However, comparing gets us nowhere.

Enter Jesus Christ. What's his number? It is infinity. How would you like to compare yourself to Christ? When I stand myself up against Christ, my number 5 is worth nothing. There is no way that my 5 will increase the number infinity. It's mathematically, hogwash. The atonement, in essence, makes us one with Christ. He adds his 'infinity' to our feeble 2 or 5 or 9. Do you see how our little number, even if it were a ten, stands as nothing compared to Christ? It doesn't matter if we're a 10 like Thomas S. Monson or Mother Teresa. These individuals still require Christ's infinity.

Jesus Christ is our redeemer. May we understand our complete reliance on His atonement. May we see our own nothingness, and finally, may we stop comparing ourselves. We're all as little children, in constant need of nourishment. Why don't we live together and laugh together in the journey of life. I say this as much to myself as to anyone else.

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