March 15, 2010

Can Good Non-Members go to the Celestial


In D&C 76:71-74 it states that those who reject the gospel in this life but receive it in the spirit world will inherit the Terrestrial Glory. How strict will this be? I have a good Christian friend that is a great person that loves, serves others and tries to live a good honest life. He has however no desire at this point to accept, "Mormonism" as he calls it. How much should I keep pushing? Should I be worried? Or will he be ok since he's a good man...?

"And again, we saw the terrestrial world, and behold and lo, these are they who are of the terrestrial, whose glory differs from that of the church of the Firstborn who have received the fulness of the Father, even as that of the moon differs from the sun in the firmament. Behold, these are they who died without law; And also they who are the spirits of men kept in prison, whom the Son visited, and preached the gospel unto them, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh; Who received not the testimony of Jesus in the flesh, but afterwards received it." D&C 76:71-74


Inside us all there is what we could describe as a graph. I want you to imagine for a moment this graph. It shows all of our qualities. On the right there is one area that shows the depth of people's understanding of God. In Protestants and Catholics this is virtually empty.

Then there is a collection of other virtues and vices, such as love, forgiveness, hate, anger, greed, sympathy, desire for revenge, desire for service, compassion, lust, selfishness, self-image, etc. Then on the extreme left there is the rate of understanding of the relationship between actions and consequences at an eternal level. In Protestants and Catholics this is at absolute zero. They believe in a totally magic God that rewards by magic: There is no relationship between actions and rewards other than those puffed up by God at his good will and pleasure.

I know one woman who has all those great inner qualities at a high rate. But she can't go any further. And the reason why, is because her impression of what she is makes it that she can't. She is beautiful in those other areas. But we are out to become as Heavenly Father or Heavenly Mother. These require exceptionally high rates.

We can question as to whether we feel these people can cross that line into the Celestial and abide Heavenly Father's presence. And maybe one day they will. But it would appear that they are going to have to accept the gospel first.

The best of them are abiding the presence of the Son. But have no understanding of the Father. Additional to this, if they hear the Father or the Son too much they will be told to join the church. So a degree of them blocking this exists.

Can I build a palace, if all I do is learn to build houses? I may make wonderful houses. But I must still learn to build a palace at some time, in order to build one.

As Alma states, the same spirit that posssesses our bodies when we die [our spirit], will be the spirit that possesses our bodies at the resurrection (Alma 34:34). If a person rejects truth in this life they have created a barrier against it.

These people have a beautiful house. But, at present, they have refused to build a palace. And the time will come when they have set their course. God waits for everyone to come to that point of no return. Only he knows when they have reached it. But they do reach it. And for those with full hearing in this life, and absolute rejection, they have set that course.

But your friend may be one that will eventually hear. Keep trying with your friend, and know that if he is one that has the heart to accept, then he will accept eventually.


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