Eternal Lives, Chapter 6

This entry is part 6 of 17 in the series Eternal Lives

Immortal Bodies

“A man may act as proxy for his own relatives; the ordinances of the Gospel which were laid out before the foundations of the world have thus been fulfilled by them, and we may be baptized for those whom we have much friendship for; but IT MUST FIRST BE REVEALED TO THE MAN OF GOD, LEST WE SHOULD RUN TOO FAR.” History of the Church, Vol.6, Ch.17, p.366

As we put the pieces of Mormon Doctrine together the picture becomes clear: Adam was once a faithful mortal on another planet. He was faithful and was resurrected and went to the celestial kingdom. Then, after ages of additional progression, with the help of “morning stars” he organized this earth and came down here with his celestial body and eventually made it physical and mortal again to create a physical seed for himself. That’s two lives for Adam right there. How can one deny it? One may say that Brigham Young did not know what he was talking about, but if one claims superior revelation to Brigham where are his works and words to show evidence of this intelligence? Art thou greater than Brigham or Joseph who taught Brigham?

Interestingly, a celestial spirit can also slow his vibrations to create a physical body. Church authorities generally believe that Jesus Christ was once Jehovah and that he lived as a spirit only before his birth, but on the contrary we find the Jehovah and two associates appeared to Abraham in PHYSICAL BODIES: “And the Lord (Lord is from the Hebrew YAHOVAH which means Jehovah) appeared to him (Abraham) in the plains of Mamres and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day; And he lift up his eyes and looked, and, lo, THREE MEN stood by him: and when he saw them, he ran to meet them from the tent door, and bowed himself toward the ground, and said My Lord (This Lord is from the Hebrew ADONAY meaning master), if now I have found favor in thy sight, pass not away, I pray thee, from thy servant: Let a little water, I pray you, be fetched, and WASH YOUR FEET, and REST yourselves under the tree: And I will fetch a MORSEL OF BREAD, and comfort ye your hearts; after that ye shall pass on: for therefore are ye come to your servant. And they said, SO DO, AS THOU HAST SAID. And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said, Make ready quickly THREE measures of fine meal, knead it, and make cakes upon the hearth. And Abraham ran unto the herd, and fetched a calf tender and good, and gave it unto a young man; and he hastened to dress it… And he took butter and milk, and the calf which he had dressed, and set it before them; and he stood by them under the tree, AND THEY DID EAT… And the MEN rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way. And the Lord (Again YeHOVAH translated Jehovah) said shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do?… And the men (two of them) turned their faces from thence, and went toward Sodom: but Abraham stood yet before the Lord”(YeHOVAH) Gen 18:1-8; 16-17, & 22. Then after the two men went to Sodom Abraham made his famous bargain with Jehovah to save the two cities, then we are told: “And the Lord (YeHOVAH) went his way…” Verse 33

In the next chapter we are told: “And there came two angels to Sodom at even..,”’ Gen. 19:1 Lot met them and offered them his house to sleep in and suggested they wash their feet and he made a feast also “and they did eat”. Verse 3. “But before they lay down, the men of the city, even the men of Sodom, compassed the house round about, both old and young, all the people from every quarter: and they called unto Lot and said unto him, Where are the men which came in to thee this night? Bring them out unto us, that we may know (have sex with) them.” verses 4-5 Later, as they were about to burst the door down to get the two men and Lot was trying to hold them back “the men (the two angels) put forth their hand, AND PULLED LOT INTO THE HOUSE to them, and shut the door,” verse 10.

Who can doubt that all three of three heavenly beings had physical bodies! They rested, they ate, they washed their feet, they slept, their bodies were seen by both the righteous and the wicked with no apparent glory. Lastly, their bodies were able to make physical contact with mortal men. The two angels “pulled Lot into the house.”

How were these non mortal men able to produce their physical bodies when there was no resurrection yet? Perhaps they were translated you say? That would really throw our doctrine for a loop if Jehovah was merely translated. Most would rule that out. Joseph Smith told us how to recognized resurrected angels from heaven. He said: “offer him your hand and request him to shake hands with you. If he be an ANGEL he will do so, and you will feel his hand. D & C 129:4-5. This is how we tell the messenger is not a spirit, but an resurrected Angel according to Joseph. (Read the whole section). How is it that Jehovah fits Joseph Smith’s description of a resurrected angel?

From this we can at least gather that Jehovah was able to produce a physical body before any recorded birth on the earth. This is also indicated in the Book of Mormon. When Jesus appeared to the brother of Jared he said: “Behold, this body which ye now behold is the body of my spirit; and man have I created after the body of my spirit; and EVEN AS I APPEAR UNTO THEE TO BE IN THE SPIRIT WILL I APPEAR TO MY PEOPLE IN THE FLESH.” Ether 3:l6. Even though Jesus had a celestial body, the faith of the Brother of Jared was so great that the vibrations of that celestial body were lowered so it actually became physical. The Brother of Jared actually saw Christ in a physical body for he saw him even as he would appear in the flesh. That the body was physical to the Brother of Jared is also indicated by his statement: “I knew not that the Lord had flesh and blood.” Ether 3:8

Jacob also wrestled with and angel who he later called “God” indicating it was Jehovah. Interestingly, Jacob actually got the best of him. Whoever this personage was, Jacob certainly touched him to prove that he had a physical body and even got his thigh out of joint. See Gen. 32:24-30. According to D&C 129 this person would have been resurrected. For resurrected persons capable of physical manifestation are often called angels as contrasted to beings of spirit only. This is especially indicated in: “IF HE BE AN ANGEL he will do so, and you shall feel his hand. If he be the spirit of a just man made perfect he will come in his glory; for that is the only way he can appear.” These persons spoken of above did not appear in glory so they must have been “Angels, who are resurrected personages, having bodies of flesh and bones.” D&C 129:1

These facts bring up questions that just cannot be answered by orthodox doctrine. What was Jehovah doing producing a physical body when we are told a spirit from God can only appear in Glory? Did Christ have some resurrection or translation before he was born to Mary? If not, how did he or some other being appear to Abraham in a physical body??? Again the doctrine of reincarnation supplies the answers. If Adam experienced mortality on another world previous to his coming here then surely Christ, being up there with Adam, also had much experience, and had also experienced mortality on other worlds to prepare him to be the master of this one. Someday, you and I will do what Adam and Jesus did when we experience our “eternal lives in the eternal worlds.” Is it not glorious to contemplate eternal life you can understand?

Another LDS stumbling block to accepting the doctrine of reincarnation is the doctrine of salvation for the dead and eternal marriage, The question arises as to why should one be baptized for the dead if he is going to come back into mortality in the future and continue to work out his salvation?

First let us point out that some scriptures used to support baptism for the dead are misunderstood. When Moroni appeared to Joseph Smith he quoted Malachi 4:5-6 a little differently than it reads in the Bible: “Behold, I will reveal unto you the Priesthood by the hand of Elijah the prophet, before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And he shall plant in the hearts of the children THE PROMISES MADE TO THE FATHERS, and the hearts of the children shall turn to their fathers. If it were not so, the whole earth would be utterly wasted at his coming.” D&C 2:1-3

Has anyone stopped to ask, after reading this scriptures, what are the promises made to the Fathers? If I did not stop now and then to ponder and question what I read I would not be writing this and would yet be “at ease in Zion”. But to continue, there are, of course, a number of important promises made to our fathers, but there is one promise which is written about more than any other, and that is the gathering of Israel (the gathering of Lights).

Many today are not aware of the significance of the gathering and think that members are accomplishing it when they merely convert people to the church so they can gather each Sunday. But that’s not gathering any more than the sectarians. If Joseph Smith were to speak to you today, he would say the LDS have become sectarians. Joseph Smith began the gathering of Israel and Brigham Young and others tried to continue it so the saints could “come out of Babylon.” If the early leaders were here today they would call to mind the parable of the wheat and the tares and behold the good seed is being strangled by the tares and declare : “An enemy hath done this.” Matt 13:28.

The original gathering as outlined by the earlier prophets failed and now it has to be done all over again. We must gather upon “a land of promise, a land flowing with milk and honey, upon which there shall be no curse when the Lord cometh.” D&C 38:18 Is Utah such a land? Verily, no. There are as many curses in Utah as any typical U.S. state. Utah residents are in “the midst of wickedness, which is spiritual Babylon” D&C 133:14

Many times in the scriptures the saints are commanded to come out of spiritual Babylon. “O ye house of Israel whom I have spared, how oft will I gather you as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, if ye will repent and return unto me with full purpose of heart. but if not, O house of Israel, the places of your dwellings shall become desolate until the time of the fulfilling of the covenant to your fathers.” III Nephi 10:6-7.

The LDS think they will be safe if they have their year’s supply of food and yet remain in spiritual Babylon – they are at ease in Zion. But if a calamity should occur none will be spared peril who remain in Babylon, years supply or not. When a hundred hungry men with clubs and sticks come at your door for food where will be your salvation then? The gathering is “for a defense, and for a refuge from the storm, and from wrath when it shall be poured out without mixture upon the whole earth.” D&C 115:6 The gathering failed as it had in other dispensations, the storm was delayed, but now it must be done all over again. This time we will succeed. The Lord knew that the gathering started by Joseph Smith and Brigham Young would not be permanent; nevertheless, much good has been accomplished, and the way has been prepared for a future gathering in the fullness of the glory of the Father.

The church today teaches that baptism for the dead must be done for all people clear back to Adam, but such a teaching is contrary to the scriptures and a very clear teaching by Joseph Smith who stated:

“A man may act as proxy for his own relatives; the ordinances of the Gospel which were laid out before the foundations of the world have thus been fulfilled by them, and we may be baptized for those whom we have much friendship for; but IT MUST FIRST BE REVEALED TO THE MAN OF GOD, LEST WE SHOULD RUN TOO FAR.” History of the Church, Vol.6, Ch.17, p.366

Now this is not a quote from Joseph that you will hear soon in General Conference.

He said the following which is at odds with current Mormon Doctrine:

(1) Baptism for the dead is for those with whom we have “much friendship for.”

(2) We “must” have revelation as to whom we must be baptized.

(3) If we do not follow these guidelines we will go “too far.”

The too far is most probably the “endless genealogies” (I Tim 1:4) that Paul told us to avoid.

Unfortunately the LDS church has drifted far from these guidelines and have strayed into endless genealogies which have nothing to do with friendship or revelation.

Concerning the dead, Joseph Smith said: “Without us, the dead could not be made perfect, nor we without them.” History of the Church Vol. 6; Pg 252. Why do we need the dead for our salvation? Joseph answered: “We must have revelation from them.” (See same page) What kind of revelation will the dead give us? They will not only give us assistance on genealogy when needed, but they will aid us in the gathering, for they are very concerned that it is successful so Zion can be established and they can come forth in their next incarnation (the first resurrection) at the beginning of the millennium of peace. The dead want a peaceful world available when they have to come back here.

Another interesting point is that baptism in the temples is not only for the dead, but in the early church members were to also baptize those who were sick to effect a healing

There is really no conflict between the doctrine of reincarnation and baptism for the dead. Each life a person lives he accumulates guilt for certain sins that must either be atoned for or he must suffer for them in a future life. It was never intended that we should baptize the dead clear back to Adam, but the ordinance was mainly for friends and relatives who accepted the basic principles of the gospel and were honorable people. Joseph Smith said: “Every man who has a friend in the eternal world can save him, unless he has committed the unpardonable sin.” History of the Church Vol. 6 pg. 313. Thus the ordinance was instituted so we could help lift the burden of guilt from those who we love. Contrary to popular belief all do not need the physical act of baptism. All do need, however, that spiritual baptism of having their sins (guilt) washed away. Mormon helps us out here: “For behold all little children are alive in Christ, and also ALL THEY THAT ARE WITHOUT THE LAW (the non Christian nations: see D&C 45:54) For the power of redemption cometh on all them that have no law; wherefore, he that is not condemned, or that is under no condemnation, cannot repent; and unto such BAPTISM AVAILETH NOTHING.” Moroni 8:22.

Baptism will only help those who are subject to the laws of the gospel. Why baptize then for the dead who are not under the law when it “availeth nothing???” If we had enough faith we would have revealed to us the dead who are to be baptized, and such a baptism would be a great help to him in washing away guilt caused by the law, and thus releasing a burden he may have on the other side of the veil. He could then be born to the holy parents who shall bring again Zion, for such parents will truly “seek a Godly seed”. Malachi 2:15.

If a Godly seed is not produced and a gathering is not effected – that is that we “should gather together, and stand in holy places” D&C 101:22, then there will not be a people prepared to meet the Lord when he comes and the “whole earth would be utterly wasted at his coming.” D&C 2:3

Joseph Smith pointed out that the people at the time of John the Baptist and Jesus were rejected with their dead and if we are not faithful we will be rejected with our dead. This indicates that our generation is not responsible for saving the dead of a past age. This is clearly pointed out in the scriptures: “But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies…” Titus 3-9 “Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies…” I Tim 1:4 “We are just responsible for “OUR” dead; not for endless genealogies. Let me repeat: baptism for the dead is to help “our dead”.

Once you go back more than 200 years the person has often taken another body here in the physical plane. Sometimes, however, a person may be caught in a world of illusion for many centuries, but generally a few generations is about all that can do any good. Do you think that God is going to keep one person in prison for five thousand years and another equally righteous for only a few years and have the former’s long fate sealed merely because he had the misfortune of being born earlier than your Grandmother? Why should your grandmother only have to wait two years for salvation and someone else thousands?

Then, too, baptism for the dead is only effective for those that repent and “if they would not repent they must suffer EVEN AS I.” D&C 19:17 How can the dead “suffer both BODY and spirit” D&C 19:18 with no body??? Joseph Smith said that baptism for the dead is for those who would have received the gospel if it had been presented to them, and that even they would be judged according to the deeds done in the body.

This helps us to understand the words of Alma: “Do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity (the kingdoms of the spirit), behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the hour of darkness wherein there can be NO LABOR PERFORMED…for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal (spirit) world.” Alma 34:33-34

When Alma said that ‘“there can be no labor performed,” he was not teaching contrary to the doctrine of salvation for the dead as the anti-Mormons teach, but he was pointing out as did Joseph that we are judged by the deeds in the body and not out. There can be very little if any repentance in the spirit world for we are possessed by the same spirit as was in the earthly body. Bodily sins can only be paid for in the body. Between lives “there can be no labor performed” and the spirit must wait for another incarnation after the finish of his “rest” and then he can labor again: “And his works shall follow him, and also a reward in the world to come.” (the next incarnation) D&C 63:48.
Copyright 1996 by J J Dewey

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