PROVO — Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints counseled Brigham Young University students on establishing a secure foundation for life during Tuesday's devotional address at the Marriott Center on campus.

Elder Scott expanded on two points: scripture study and the Atonement of Christ.

"Profound personal pondering of the scriptures accompanied by searching, heartfelt prayer will fortify your understanding of and appreciation of the Atonement," he said.

Quoting Alma 7:23, Elder Scott said, "In that single verse, Alma gives an extremely effective formula for success and happiness in life."

Elder Scott told BYU students that regular application of the principles in this particular scripture would garner greater accomplishment, satisfaction and peace from their diligent efforts at the university.

Alma 7:23: "And now I would that ye should be humble, and be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive."

Elder Scott said his own personal pondering and meditation of scriptural references has awakened a "profound reverence for the unfathomable depth" of the capacities of God and Jesus Christ.

"It is overwhelming to realize that they focus all of this incredible ability on the accomplishment of their paramount purpose: that we attain sufficient personal growth, development and progress to inherit the highest and most comprehensive blessings of our Father's plan of happiness," he said.

Quoting from 3 Nephi, Chapter 17, Elder Scott spoke of the Atonement of Christ. "And when he had said these words, he wept, and the multitude bear record of it, and he took their little children, one by one, and blessed them, and prayed unto the Father for them."

Elder Scott said the depth of how Christ and Heavenly Father "feel when they see us make mistakes or not do the things they know can bring happiness in our life is beyond our capacity to appreciate, as is the height of their rejoicing when we are obedient."

"Therefore, let us resolve to ever live righteously," he said.

No mortal mind can adequately conceive, nor human tongue appropriately express, the full significance of all that Jesus Christ has done for our Heavenly Father's children through his Atonement, he said.

"Yet it is vital that each of us learn what we can about it," Elder Scott said. "The Atonement is that essential ingredient of our Father in Heaven's plan of happiness without which that plan would have no significant meaning."

Some 5,439 people were present in the Marriott Center to listen to Elder Scott, according to the BYU Special Events Office.

Elder Scott was sustained a member of the Twelve on Oct. 1, 1988, having previously served in the First Quorum of the Seventy for five years. He also presided over the Argentina North Mission in Cordoba, Argentina, from 1965 to 1969.

The George Washington University graduate completed a degree in mechanical engineering before continuing his studies at Oak Ridge, Tenn., where he focused on nuclear engineering.

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