The good news of Jesus Christ does not alleviate His followers from sacrifice.
Followers of the Great Shepard live a life of personal sacrifice unto Him for the progression of themselves and the benefit of mankind. It is the great tool used to conform the follower into His imagine: love.
As we choose to fulfill the tasks commissioned to us from Heaven, by inspiration of His Spirit, we walk the path of transformation. By surrendering our will daily to the Holy Spirit, or the mind of God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ, we:
” […] put off the natural man, and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.” – Mosiah 3:19
These daily tasks build within us the necessary faith to eventually surrender all things to obtain life unto salvation. We must be proven to the point where we will hold nothing back from God. You will know the sacrifice being asked of you is from Him, because only He will require it of you.
Christ is the great prototype of this principle. He was sent by our Father to be the propitiation for our sins. His great work was accomplished by His great faith. His great faith birthed the greatest sacrifice of all time: His life.
Make no mistake about it, the process to giving His life for us all was not easy.
“Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit—and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink—Nevertheless, glory be to the Father, and I partook and finished my preparations unto the children of men.” – Doctrine and Covenants 19:18-19
And it will not be easy for us.
If we choose to follow the example of Christ by walking the path of transformation – the path of personal and ultimate sacrifice – we too must experience, in part, what He experienced. Something so painful, so bitter, so unique to us, that it will literally bring us to the place of a broken heart and contrite spirit. It’s been said that Joseph Smith taught the following:
“You will have all kinds of trials to pass through. And it is quite as necessary for you to be tried as it was for Abraham and other men of God. . . God will feel after you, and he will take hold of you and wrench your very heart strings, and if you cannot stand it you will not be fit for an inheritance in the Celestial Kingdom of God.”
This is the way, and there is no other.
Here are a collection of sayings from true messengers of Christ:
“The trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls” – Peter
“But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ. Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ, and be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death.” – Paul
“Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and contrite spirit,; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered.” – Lehi
“And now, my beloved brethren, I know by this that unless a man shall endure to the end, in following the example of the Son of the living God, he cannot be saved . . . . Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.”- Nephi
“For a man to lay down his all, his character and reputation, his honor and applause, his good name among men, his houses, his lands, his brothers and sisters, his wife and children, and even his own life also, counting all things but filth and dross for the excellency of the knowledge of Jesus Christ, requires more than mere belief, or supposition that he is doing the will of God, but actual knowledge: realizing, that when these sufferings are ended he will enter into eternal rest; and be a partaker of the glory of God.” – Joseph Smith
I’ll end with this: What think ye of Christ?
Will you walk this path of sacrifice like He did?
Will you trust Him while doing so?
Will you do it so you can be a vessel of love for mankind like He was?
Will you do it so that when He appears, you shall be like Him?