A period that is considered as the most important in human history is the period when Jesus Christ, the Only Begotten Son of our Heavenly Father, took upon Himself the suffering of all humankind past, present and future. He took upon Himself the sins of the world, which caused Him suffering and pain that in His own description, “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” (D&C 19:18), all so that we may not suffer the same fate on condition of repentance. In this same period He became the firstfruits of them that slept by conquering the bands of death, that all may be resurrected never to die again (see 1 Corinthians 15:20).
On April 3, 1836, which was coincidentally Easter Sunday, the resurrected Lord appeared to the Prophet Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery in the Kirtland Temple and declared, “I am He who liveth, I am He who was slain” (D&C 110:4). This knowledge gives me peace, hope and joy that because of Him, you and I are able to take up our deceased bodies and live again with an immortal body eternally. I know that He lives today and is running the affairs of His church through prophets and apostles. He heals wounded souls and broken hearts today. Indeed, nothing would go wrong if mankind would put our whole trust in Him.
When beset with personal and family challenges, it is assuring to know that He who travelled the very same route and more—the one who suffered all forms of pain during the Atonement—is beside us cheering us on. He understands every physical pain that we can imagine—from a sprained muscle to the most severe chronic illness and any form of rejection—it was Him who was rejected by His own. When Pontius Pilate found no fault with the Saviour and asked the people whom to free—Jesus Christ, the perfect sinless being or Barabbas, the notorious robber and murderer—they shouted with fervent vigour for Barabbas to be freed, and Jesus be crucified (see Matthew 27:17-23).
As we celebrate the Easter season, our family has developed an understanding that gifts were bestowed upon us: a gift of life eternal, a gift of forgiveness for our debts on condition of repentance, and personal revelation as a Liahona to guide us back to the presence of our Heavenly parents (see 1 Nephi 16).
Surprisingly, there are millions around us who are not aware of these supernal gifts. We have made it an Easter family tradition to share and invite our fellow brothers and sisters to be partakers of these special gifts. We prayerfully select three families with whom we share this special knowledge that has the potential to change their whole existence. The results have been phenomenal as we become partakers with our neighbours and extended family members. A new vision of hope and confidence is created as we travel hand in hand with our loved ones towards our eternal home to be reunited with our Heavenly Parents.
From the words of latter-day prophets, we learn: “What He did could only be done by Deity. As the Only Begotten Son of the Father in the flesh, Jesus inherited divine attributes. He was the only person ever born into mortality who could perform this most significant and supernal act. As the only sinless Man who ever lived on this earth, He was not subject to spiritual death. Because of His godhood, He also possessed power over physical death. Thus He did for us what we cannot do for ourselves. He broke the cold grasp of death. He also made it possible for us to have the supreme and serene comfort of the gift of the Holy Ghost”1.
Indeed, when we are faced with challenges in life that may seem insurmountable, let us be comforted by the knowledge that the Son of Man can truly make the impossible possible. He was able to heal the woman who had an issue of blood for twelve years by her simply touching the hem of His garment. He was able to raise Lazarus to life who was dead in the tomb for four days. He was able to say a word and the servant of the centurion was restored to health. He was able to command the boisterous sea to be still. He was able to identify the very fish that had a coin in its belly to pay taxes.
It is indeed He who lives, the great I Am, the Creator of heaven and earth and all that is in it.
Dunstan G.B.T. Chadambuka was called as an Area Seventy in April 2019. He is married to Pertunia Mudarikwa; they are the parents of three children.