Topic Study: Atonement

(July 2013.  Started as part of my personal study of the Atonement and Article of Faith 3)

The other day when starting this study, I attempted to list significant scriptures on the Atonement.  I was surprised at how few I could list.  So this is an attempt to understand what the scriptures say on this important topic.


  • Lev. 17:11 blood that maketh an a. for the soul
  • Zech. 9:11 by the blood of thy covenant
  • Matt. 26:28 my blood … shed for many for the remission of sins
  • Luke 22:44 his sweat was as it were great drops of blood
  • Rom. 5:9 justified by his blood, we shall be saved
  • 1 Jn. 1:7 blood of Jesus … cleanseth us from all sin
  • Mosiah 3:16 blood of Christ a. for their sins
  • Hel. 5:9 saved, only through the a. blood of Jesus Christ
  • Moro. 10:33 sanctified … through the shedding of the blood [copied 3]
  • D&C 38:4 by the virtue of the blood which I have spilt, have I pleaded [copied 4]


  • Luke 22:19 my body which is given for you
  • John 6:51 my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world


  • Isa. 53:6 (Mosiah 14:6) Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all
  • Matt. 8:17 Himself took our infirmities, and bare our sicknesses
  • 1 Pet. 2:21 Christ also suffered for us
  • 1 Pet. 2:24 his own self bare our sins
  • 1 Pet. 3:18 Christ also hath once suffered for sins
  • 1 Jn. 3:5 he was manifested to take away our sins
  • Alma 7:11 take upon him the pains and the sicknesses
  • Alma 34:8 he shall a. for the sins of the world
  • D&C 18:11 he suffered the pain of all men
  • D&C 19:16 I, God, have suffered these things for all


  • John 10:15 I lay down my life for the sheep
  • John 11:25 I am the resurrection, and the life
  • Heb. 2:9 that he … should taste death for every man
  • 1 Ne. 11:33 he was lifted up upon the cross and slain for the sins [copied 1]
  • Alma 42:23 the a. bringeth to pass the resurrection
  • 3 Ne. 11:14 God of the whole earth … slain for the sins of the world [copied 2]


  • Matt. 20:28 (1 Tim. 2:6) Son of man came … to give his life a ransom
  • John 12:32 (3 Ne. 27:15) if I be lifted up … will draw all men unto me
  • Rom. 8:32 spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us
  • Philip. 2:8 obedient unto death, even the death of the cross
  • Heb. 7:27 this he did once, when he offered up himself
  • Heb. 9:28 Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many
  • 1 Ne. 11:33 he was lifted up upon the cross and slain for the sins [copied 1]
  • 2 Ne. 2:7 he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin
  • Mosiah 14:10 thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin
  • 3 Ne. 11:14 God of the whole earth … slain for the sins of the world [copied 2]
  • D&C 38:4 by the virtue of the blood which I have spilt, have I pleaded [copied 4]
  • D&C 138:2 the great a. sacrifice that was made by the Son
  • Moses 5:7 a similitude of the sacrifice of the Only Begotten

The Way/Plan

  • John 14:6 no man cometh unto the Father but by me
  • John 17:4 finished the work which thou gavest me to do
  • 2 Ne. 11:5 great and eternal plan of deliverance
  • Mosiah 4:6 come to a knowledge of … a. which has been prepared
  • Mosiah 13:28 were it not for the a. … they must unavoidably perish
  • Moro. 8:20 setteth at naught the a.
  • D&C 29:1 I Am, whose arm of mercy hath a. for your sins
  • D&C 74:7 little children are holy … through the a.
  • D&C 76:69 Jesus … wrought out this perfect a.
  • Moses 6:54 Son of God hath a. for original guilt
  • A of F 3 through the A. of Christ, all mankind may be saved


  • John 17:19 for their sakes I sanctify myself
  • Acts 13:38 (13:38–41) through this man is preached … forgiveness of sins
  • Rom. 3:25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation
  • 2 Cor. 5:18 hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus
  • Eph. 2:16 reconcile both unto God … by the cross
  • 1 Jn. 2:2 he is the propitiation for our sins
  • 1 Jn. 4:10 sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins
  • Jacob 4:11 reconciled unto him through the a. of Christ
  • Moro. 10:33 sanctified … through the shedding of the blood [copied 3]


  • Rom. 5:11 (5:6–21) Christ, by whom we have now received the a.
  • Heb. 5:9 author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey
  • 2 Ne. 9:7 it must needs be an infinite a.
  • 2 Ne. 10:25 May God raise you from everlasting death by the power of the a.
  • D&C 45:4 behold the sufferings and death of him who did no sin

So the earliest reference to the Atonement is likely this verse:

4  And Adam and Eve, his wife, called upon the name of the Lord, and they heard the voice of the Lord from the way toward the Garden of Eden, speaking unto them, and they saw him not; for they were shut out from his presence.

5  And he gave unto them commandments, that they should worship the Lord their God, and should offer the firstlings of their flocks, for an offering unto the Lord.  And Adam was obedient unto the commandments of the Lord.

6  And after many days an angel of the Lord appeared unto Adam, saying: Why dost thou offer sacrifices unto the Lord?  And Adam said unto him: I know not, save the Lord commanded me.

7  And then the angel spake, saying: This thing is a similitude of the sacrifice of the Only Begotten of the Father, which is full of grace and truth.

8  Wherefore, thou shalt do all that thou doest in the name of the Son, and thou shalt repent and call upon God in the name of the Son forevermore.

9  And in that day the Holy Ghost fell upon Adam, which beareth record of the Father and the Son, saying: I am the Only Begotten of the Father from the beginning, henceforth and forever, that as thou hast fallen thou mayest be redeemed, and all mankind, even as many as will.

Moses 5:4 – 9

The next earliest reference is this by Enoch:

48  And he said unto them: Because that Adam fell, we are; and by his fall came death; and we are made partakers of misery and woe.

49  Behold Satan hath come among the children of men, and tempteth them to worship him; and men have become carnal, sensual, and devilish, and are shut out from the presence of God.

50  But God hath made known unto our fathers that all men must repent.

51  And he called upon our father Adam by his own voice, saying: I am God; I made the world, and men before they were in the flesh.

52  And he also said unto him: If thou wilt turn unto me, and hearken unto my voice, and believe, and repent of all thy transgressions, and be baptized, even in water, in the name of mine Only Begotten Son, who is full of grace and truth, which is Jesus Christ, the only name which shall be given under heaven, whereby salvation shall come unto the children of men, ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, asking all things in his name, and whatsoever ye shall ask, it shall be given you.

53  And our father Adam spake unto the Lord, and said: Why is it that men must repent and be baptized in water?  And the Lord said unto Adam: Behold I have forgiven thee thy transgression in the Garden of Eden.

54  Hence came the saying abroad among the people, that the Son of God hath atoned for original guilt, wherein the sins of the parents cannot be answered upon the heads of the children, for they are whole from the foundation of the world.

55  And the Lord spake unto Adam, saying: Inasmuch as thy children are conceived in sin, even so when they begin to grow up, sin conceiveth in their hearts, and they taste the bitter, that they may know to prize the good.

56  And it is given unto them to know good from evil; wherefore they are agents unto themselves, and I have given unto you another law and commandment.

57  Wherefore teach it unto your children, that all men, everywhere, must repent, or they can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God, for no unclean thing can dwell there, or dwell in his presence; for, in the language of Adam, Man of Holiness is his name, and the name of his Only Begotten is the Son of Man, even Jesus Christ, a righteous Judge, who shall come in the meridian of time.

58  Therefore I give unto you a commandment, to teach these things freely unto your children, saying:

59  That by reason of transgression cometh the fall, which fall bringeth death, and inasmuch as ye were born into the world by water, and blood, and the spirit, which I have made, and so became of dust a living soul, even so ye must be born again into the kingdom of heaven, of water, and of the Spirit, and be cleansed by blood, even the blood of mine Only Begotten; that ye might be sanctified from all sin, and enjoy the words of eternal life in this world, and eternal life in the world to come, even immortal glory;

60  For by the water ye keep the commandment; by the Spirit ye are justified, and by the blood ye are sanctified;

61  Therefore it is given to abide in you; the record of heaven; the Comforter; the peaceable things of immortal glory; the truth of all things; that which quickeneth all things, which maketh alive all things; that which knoweth all things, and hath all power according to wisdom, mercy, truth, justice, and judgment.

62  And now, behold, I say unto you: This is the plan of salvation unto all men, through the blood of mine Only Begotten, who shall come in the meridian of time.

Moses 6:48 – 62

Many of the references above also speak to the life of the Savior.  The earliest version of this might be this

53  And the Lord said: Blessed is he through whose seed Messiah shall come; for he saith—I am Messiah, the King of Zion, the Rock of Heaven, which is broad as eternity; whoso cometh in at the gate and climbeth up by me shall never fall; wherefore, blessed are they of whom I have spoken, for they shall come forth with songs of everlasting joy.

54  And it came to pass that Enoch cried unto the Lord, saying: When the Son of Man cometh in the flesh, shall the earth rest?  I pray thee, show me these things.

55  And the Lord said unto Enoch: Look, and he looked and beheld the Son of Man lifted up on the cross, after the manner of men;

56  And he heard a loud voice; and the heavens were veiled; and all the creations of God mourned; and the earth groaned; and the rocks were rent; and the saints arose, and were crowned at the right hand of the Son of Man, with crowns of glory;

57  And as many of the spirits as were in prison came forth, and stood on the right hand of God; and the remainder were reserved in chains of darkness until the judgment of the great day.

Moses 7:53 – 57

So what have I learned from this?  I guess perhaps the basic structure is in the P of GP for this analysis for my slide.

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