Thursday, August 6, 2015

The Special Chemistry of Contemplation: Glorifying Christ

Elder Neal A. Maxwell
"Jesus was at His perfect best when things were at their worst in Gethsemane and Calvary. There could have been no Atonement without the character of Christ! None of the precious lines I am going to share with you now and what occurred in connection with them could have occurred without Jesus’ perfect character. He entered Gethsemane, and the agony by then was so intense, so overwhelming that, at least initially, He “fell on His face” (Matt. 26:39). And then we read of Him that He let His will be “swallowed up in the will of the Father” (Mosiah 15:7), and He “poured out his soul unto death” (Isa. 53:12; Mosiah 14:12). Think of the imagery—pouring out His soul unto death and being swallowed up in the will of the Father!

He confides in us, in my opinion, what perhaps concerned Him most when He said, “Would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink” (D&C 19:18). In that connection, He felt “the fierceness of the wrath of Almighty God” (D&C 76:107). I never recite or read that line without some inner tremulation—“the fierceness of the wrath of the Almighty God,” during which He stood in our stead and paid for our sins. If we will let the foregoing imagery rest upon our minds and in our hearts more often, it will bring the special chemistry of contemplation, evoking an even deeper love for Christ and the Father and greater gratitude for what took place. Remember King Benjamin’s words about knowing Christ in our hearts and minds (see Mosiah 5:12–13). Remember, too, one of the gifts of the Holy Ghost is that He glorifies Christ." 

- Elder Neal A. Maxwell, The Holy Ghost: Glorifying Christ