Jesus Christ Is Central to Heavenly Father’s Plan09282_000_014
Heavenly Father prepared a plan to help us become as He is and to receive a fulness of joy. He said, “This is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39).
As spirit children of our Father in Heaven, we lived in His presence in our premortal life. This is called our first estate. We gathered together in a great Council in Heaven in which Heavenly Father presented His plan to us: We would come to earth, our second estate, and gain a physical body. We would also “prove” that “we [would] do all things whatsoever … God [would] command [us]” (Abraham 3:25). A Savior would atone for the sins of all mankind, making it possible for us to repent and become clean again. (See Alma 42:23–26.)
We chose to accept our Heavenly Father’s plan and Jesus Christ as our Savior. Because of the Savior’s Atonement and Resurrection, we can return to our Heavenly Father’s presence and live the kind of life He lives.
See Gospel Principles (2009),
We met in a great Council in Heaven with our Heavenly Father to hear His plan.
God’s plan required a Savior to atone for our earthly sins. God asked, “Whom shall I send?” (Abraham 3:27).
Jesus Christ, the Firstborn of our Heavenly Father’s children, knew we must be free to choose to obey God. Jesus said, “Here am I, send me” (Abraham 3:27). “Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever” (Moses 4:2).
Lucifer, another of God’s children, did not believe that we should be free to choose to obey God. He said, “Here am I, send me. … I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost … ; wherefore give me thine honor” (Moses 4:1).
Our Heavenly Father said, “I will send the first”—Jesus Christ (Abraham 3:27).
We “shouted for joy” (Job 38:7).
Because Jesus Christ was to be the Savior, Lucifer became angry and rebelled. A third part of the hosts of heaven followed him. (See D&C 29:36–37.)
We chose to accept God’s plan and follow Jesus Christ. We kept our first estate and progressed to our second estate, where we received a mortal body.
We receive the benefits of the Atonement of Jesus Christ by having faith in Him, repenting of our sins, being baptized by His priesthood authority, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and keeping God’s commandments throughout our lives (see 2 Nephi 31:16–20; Articles of Faith 1:3–4).
“Ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, … but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you” (1 Peter 1:18–20).
Left: Detail from Christ at Emmaus, by Carl Heinrich Bloch; illustrations by Robert T. Barrett; photo illustration of baptism by Matthew Reier