The Articles of Faith are thirteen statements of basic belief for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (referred to as the Mormons). They were written as a part of a document called the Wentworth Letter, which Joseph Smith wrote in 1842 to John Wentworth of the Chicago Democrat. Later, these brief statements were set to music by American composer Vanja Watkins. In this series, we will examine the truths presented in the Articles of Faith.

Elder Dallin H Oaks mormonArticle of Faith 3:

We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.

(Articles of Faith)

Once we have established the basic idea of the existence of God and acknowledged our responsibility for our actions before Him, what doctrine could be more important than the doctrine of Christ? Apostle Dallin H. Oaks stated:

What do members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints think of Christ?

Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God the Eternal Father. He is our Creator. He is our Teacher. He is our Savior. His atonement paid for the sin of Adam and won victory over death, assuring resurrection and immortality for all men.

He is all of these, but he is more. Jesus Christ is the Savior, whose atoning sacrifice opens the door for us to be cleansed of our personal sins so that we can be readmitted to the presence of God. He is our Redeemer.

(What Think Ye of Christ? October 1988)

Apostle Boyd K. Packer used this Article of Faith in effectively teaching young people about the Atonement:

The study of behavior is greatly improved when linked to standards and to values. Practical values, useful in everyday life, are found in the scriptures and the doctrines they reveal. I will give you one example: “We believe that through the Atonement of Christ, all mankind may be saved, by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel.”

You should learn while you are young that while the Atonement of Christ applies to humanity in general, the influence of it is individual, very personal, and very useful. Even to you beginners, an understanding of the Atonement is of immediate and very practical value in everyday life. . .

I say to you again that a knowledge of the principles and doctrines of the gospel will affect your behavior more than talking about behavior.

(Washed Clean, April 1997)

To his teaching, I add my testimony that the Atonement of Jesus Christ is not a vague idea, but a practical, real power. We can all access it by obedience to His commandments. The Atonement of Jesus is the power by which we can be brought back into the presence of the Father. It can change hearts and actions. It can move worlds. I thank God for Jesus Christ and the power of His sacrifice for me.

MP3 Recording of The Third Article of Faith children’s song

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