“The Spirit and the Body Is Restored to Itself Again”

Joseph F. McConkie, Robert L. Millet

All will be raised [in the resurrection by the power of God, having spirit in their bodies, and not blood (Teachings, pp. 199-200). The resurrected body will be incorruptible—whole, complete, pure, and no longer subject to aging, sickness, and decay. Indeed, “to possess the gift of immortality is to have the power to live forever, the capacity to endure every obstacle to life.

The scriptures speak expressly of immortality as one of the wondrous gifts to man through the atonement of Jesus Christ. And yet we recognize that the spirit of man is already an immortal entity, a conscious personality which cannot cease to exist. Even if there had been no atonement, the spirit of man would live on everlastingly. But the immortality of which the scriptures almost always speak is that immortality associated with the immortal soul or resurrected body—the inseparable union of body and spirit equipped thereafter for a kingdom of glory. Only through the actions of a God—the redemptive labors of Jesus the Messiah—can such an immortal state be attained.” (The Life Beyond, pp. 131-32).

“Wherefore It Must Needs Be an Infinite Atonement”

The atonement of Jesus Christ is infinite and eternal. First, it is infinite in the sense that it is timeless—embracing past, present, and future. Our Savior is the Lamb “slain from the foundation of the world” (Revelation 13:8), and the effects of his atonement reach back to Eden and forward to the Millennium’s end. Adam and Eve were taught to call upon God in the name of the Son for a remission of their sins, by virtue of an atonement which would be worked out some four thousand years hence (Moses 5:8).

Enoch saw and bore witness some three thousand years before the events of Gethsemane and Calvary: “The Righteous is lifted up, and the Lamb is slain from the foundation of the world” (Moses 7:47).

Jesus Christ offered himself a ransom for sin in one singular moment in earth’s history, so “that as many as would believe and be baptized in his holy name and endure in faith to the end, should be saved—not only those who believed after he came in the meridian of time, in the flesh, but all those from the beginning, even as many as were before he came, who believed in the words of the holy prophets … , as well as those who should come after, who should believe in the gifts and callings of God by the Holy Ghost, which beareth record of the Father and of the Son” (D&C 20:25-27; cf. Alma 39:17-19).

Those who lived before the meridian of time were taught to repent and believe in the name of the Holy One, “to look forward unto the Messiah, and believe in him to come as though he already was” (Jarom 1:11).

Doctrinal Commentary on the Book of Mormon, Vol. 1