Apostles and prophets bear witness to Christ and His divine mission. This Easter season, we have compiled some of our favorite quotes from apostles on the Atonement.
Russell M. Nelson
"Let us . . . ponder the deep meaning of the word atonement. In the English language, the components are at-one-ment, suggesting that a person is at one with another. Other languages employ words that connote either expiation or reconciliation. Expiation means 'to atone for.' Reconciliation comes from Latin roots re, meaning 'again'; con, meaning 'with'; and sella, meaning 'seat.' Reconciliation, therefore, literally means 'to sit again with.'
"Rich meaning is found in study of the word atonement in the Semitic languages of Old Testament times. In Hebrew, the basic word for atonement is kaphar, a verb that means 'to cover' or 'to forgive.' Closely related is the Aramaic and Arabic word kafat, meaning 'a close embrace'—no doubt related to the Egyptian ritual embrace. References to that embrace are evident in the Book of Mormon. One states that 'the Lord hath redeemed my soul . . . ; I have beheld his glory, and I am encircled about eternally in the arms of his love' (2 Nephi 1:15). Another proffers the glorious hope of our being 'clasped in the arms of Jesus' (Mormon 5:11).
"I weep for joy when I contemplate the significance of it all. To be redeemed is to be atoned—received in the close embrace of God with an expression not only of His forgiveness, but of our oneness of heart and mind. What a privilege!"
Boyd K. Packer
"When we are racked or harrowed up or tormented by guilt or burdened with grief, He can heal us. While we do not fully understand how the Atonement of Christ was made, we can experience the peace of God which passeth all understanding."
Neal A. Maxwell
"Having 'descended below all things,' He comprehends, perfectly and personally, the full range of human suffering! A spiritual sung in yesteryear has an especially moving and insightful line: 'Nobody knows the troubles I’ve seen, nobody knows but Jesus.' Truly, Jesus was exquisitely 'acquainted with grief,' as no one else."
David A. Bednar
"The Savior has suffered not just for our iniquities but also for the inequality, the unfairness, the pain, the anguish, and the emotional distresses that so frequently beset us. There is no physical pain, no anguish of soul, no suffering of spirit, no infirmity or weakness that you or I ever experience during our mortal journey that the Savior did not experience first. You and I in a moment of weakness may cry out, 'No one understands. No one knows.' No human being, perhaps, knows. But the Son of God perfectly knows and understands, for He felt and bore our burdens before we ever did. And because He paid the ultimate price and bore that burden, He has perfect empathy and can extend to us His arm of mercy in so many phases of our life. He can reach out, touch, succor—literally run to us—and strengthen us to be more than we could ever be and help us to do that which we could never do through relying upon only our own power."
Dieter F. Uchtdorf
"We all depend on the Savior; none of us can be saved without Him. Christ’s Atonement is infinite and eternal. Forgiveness for our sins comes with conditions. We must repent, and we must be willing to forgive others. . . Remember, heaven is filled with those who have this in common: They are forgiven. And they forgive. Lay your burden at the Savior’s feet. Let go of judgment. Allow Christ’s Atonement to change and heal your heart. Love one another. Forgive one another. The merciful will obtain mercy."
Thomas S. Monson
"One of God’s greatest gifts to us is the joy of trying again, for no failure ever need be final."
Dale G. Renlund
"In His mercy, God promises forgiveness when we repent and turn from wickedness—so much so that our sins will not even be mentioned to us. For us, because of the Atonement of Christ and our repentance, we can look at our past deeds and say, '’Twas I; but ‘tis not I.' No matter how wicked, we can say, 'That’s who I was. But that past wicked self is no longer who I am.'"
Jeffrey R. Holland
"Brothers and sisters, one of the great consolations of this Easter season is that because Jesus walked such a long, lonely path utterly alone, we do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought great company for our little version of that path—the merciful care of our Father in Heaven, the unfailing companionship of this Beloved Son, the consummate gift of the Holy Ghost, angels in heaven, family members on both sides of the veil, prophets and apostles, teachers, leaders, friends. All of these and more have been given as companions for our mortal journey because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the Restoration of His gospel. Trumpeted from the summit of Calvary is the truth that we will never be left alone nor unaided, even if sometimes we may feel that we are. Truly the Redeemer of us all said: “I will not leave you comfortless: [My Father and] I will come to you [and abide with you]."