April 22, 2010

Leadership Positions and Eternal Life


How does leadership play into eternal life? Obviously our Savior Jesus Christ and Father in Heaven are the ultimate in leadership examples, we are to be like them. So if someone is never a bishop, or Stake President, or called to some other leader position does that tell us something about that individual?
Or maybe that is a worldly perspective...


Doctrine and Covenants 121:34-40 inform us that few church leaders will gain eternal life. It could be argued that positions give a person the opportunity they require to grow to become one of the few. And with some people I wouldn't dispute that. But the Scriptures do inform us that people with no church position can become quite effective people and gain eternal life.

For example Lehi had no position whatsoever when called upon to lead his family out. And even then he would be called the leader of an extremely small branch today.

While Elijah had an official position, he had no church. Yet he will have eternal life.

John the Baptist had some disciples, but had no official position within a church.

Jeremiah was just a priest, not the leader of the church either.

And how much of a church did Noah have? - an even smaller branch than Lehi.

And what size church did Ether have?

Moroni wandered around with no church either.

The prophetess Deborah had no official position.

And what of Mary, the mother of Jesus? - she will have eternal life.

Far more women will have eternal life than men, yet how many have had some glorified position?

You are right in assuming it to be a worldly perspective.

It is up to us to use the Spirit and create our own positions of service. We can be far more effective home teachers than visiting only once a month. We can be far better class secretaries than just marking the roll. As we seek for the Spirit's help in being more effective he will give us leadership opportunities.

The greatest leader is the greatest follower. Jesus Christ was the greatest leader because he followed Heavenly Father better than anyone else. As you seek to follow Heavenly Father through Jesus Christ some people will begin to follow you. God will open up opportunities to you as you strive to serve. Don't seek the position. He will just give it to you (which could be official or unofficial) at the appropriate time.

April 20, 2010

Parental Sealing Power Able to Raise to Celestial?


My friend and I had a discussion the other day about the sealing power. He seems to believe that righteous parents who seal their children to themselves, have the power to bring their children up to the Celestial kingdom who may have fallen short and are able to do this because of the power of the "sealing power". What are your thoughts on this?


I've heard this optomistic claim before. Before getting into it, I would have to say that it doesn't sit right with free agency. It also opposes righteous judgement, by making some in better positions only because of someone else's righteousness. Someone could argue, "well, what about Christ and his atonement for us, doesn't his action rob justice occuring to us?"

That is true, but we still must change from that time forth and become sanctified through a process, to be a true saint (perfect person). Whereas this idea is proposing that a person doesn't need to change their character.

In regard this, Doctrine and Covenants 88:21 says _

"And they who are not sanctified throught the law which I have given to you, even the law of Christ, must inherit another kingdom, even that of a terrestirial kingdom, or that of a telestial kingdom."

So sanctification (which is done by the Holy Ghost through a lengthy process) is necessary to gain the Celestial Kingdom. Also to live in a particular kingdom you must be prepared to abide the law of that kingdom.

In spite of popular belief, people won't change afterward. Alma 34:34-35 presents the following _

"You cannot say, when you are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. No, you cannot say this; for that same spirit which does possess your bodies at the time you go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world. For look, if you have procrastinated the day of your repentance even until death, see, you have become subjected to the spirit of the devil, and he does seal you his; therefore, the Spirit of the Lord has withdrwan from you, and has no place in you, and the devil has all power over you; and this is the final state of the wicked."

What Alma is saying is that our spirit will not be any different in the resurrection. If we were not willing to live a righteous lifestyle in this time then we will not be willing to do so later either. Who our parents were will make no difference to that.

Note it says that the devil will seal you his.

A further thought is given in Alma 12:11 _

"And they that will harden their hearts, to them is given the lesser portion of the word until they know nothing concerning his mysteries; and then they are taken captive by the devil, and led by his will down to destruction. Now this is what is meant by the chains of hell."

If a person refuses to learn the mysteries of the kingdom now, a binding upon them will be by the devil, with "the chains of hell."

1 Nephi 15:33 states _

"... they must be brought to stand before God, to be judged of their works; and if their works have been filthiness they also must be filthy; and if they are filthy it has to be that they cannot dwell in the kingdom of God; if they can then the kingdom of God must be filthy also."

So for a person to be able to live in the Celestial Kingdom he cannot be doing things that are filthy.