In their infinite goodness and grace, our eternal Mother and Father hold each of us in their hands and hearts, and have given us everything; everything that we need as infinite beings to progress and increase, advance and improve. Here we live out our lives and move about on this one small rocky outcrop of life called earth, struggling in a world of contending voices and differing opinions regarding truth and the meaning of our existence. Have you ever stopped to ponder and imagine the immensity of time that you have already existed and will continue to exist for eternities beyond eternities and incalculable infinities— It staggers the mind and brings one to their knees when considering the ramifications of such mental exercises, especially when combined with the limitations of our lifeless and uninspiring doctrines of stagnation and stationary salvation in Mormonism.
Rather than embrace the grandeur and glory of an infinite plan of salvation as taught by the holy prophets, we have embraced death and boredom and a monotonous lackluster eternal life in kingdoms of hopelessness without progression, advancement, development, or improvement. All because of our belief in a theology of a limited God with a limited offering of three kingdoms and a hell to provide us with stimulus to last the uncountable ages of time. Given these four choices as taught in the Mormon sitcom of salvation, none of these choices is better than the next, because they all eventually lead to oblivion as forward momentum ceases and we become inert, still, motionless, static, and dead. We’ve written about Dead Works in the Strong Delusion Topic, and I suppose we could just as well title this paper “The Salvation of Death as defined by the Doctrine and Covenants.”
D&C Section 76 portrays for the adherents of Mormonism, the most austere, bleak, unwelcoming, and isolated infinite existence ever exclaimed by religion. In the doctrine of Joseph Smith we would find ourselves cast into this world of darkness and trouble and given this one chance only to overcome the obstacles hurled at us day after day in hopes of SOMEHOW qualifying for the undefined requirements of entrance into the Mormon celestial kingdom. The church is very clear about one of the qualifications of admittance. It’s the entrance fee of 10% of your money.
As we search the Holy Scriptures for truth, it’s clear that God has something much better for us in mind than the lethargic doldrums defined in Mormon doctrine; He is bringing all of mankind along the road of salvation, and all are given an equal chance. The Infinite and Most High God has spoken through His holy prophets and through His Son, and in turn, they have taught God’s true plan of salvation eloquently in the Bible and Book of Mormon. We’ve previously provided numerous passages of scripture regarding this concept we call eternal lives, and we turn to the prophet Alma now to consider his insightful words:
2 Yea, I would declare unto every soul, as with the voice of thunder, repentance and the plan of redemption, that they should repent and come unto our God, that there might not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth.
3 But behold, I am a man, and do sin in my wish; for I ought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me.
4 I ought not to harrow up in my desires the firm decree of a just God, for I know that he granteth unto men according to their desire, whether it be unto death or unto life; yea, I know that he allotteth unto men, yea, decreeth unto them decrees which are unalterable, according to their wills, whether they be unto salvation or unto destruction.
5 Yea, and I know that good and evil have come before all men; he that knoweth not good from evil is blameless; but he that knoweth good and evil, to him it is given according to his desires, whether he desireth good or evil, life or death, joy or remorse of conscience.(Alma 29:2-5)
I do not see in Alma’s words or anywhere in his book a reference to three degrees of glory, nor will you find that doctrine taught anywhere in scripture outside of the D&C despite Mormon Church attempts to hijack Paul’s words used to describe levels or grades of bodies (1Cor 15:40).
Let’s pause here and set the record straight about Smith’s further related claims to his three degrees of glory. Joseph Smith taught that all exalted men dwell in “everlasting burnings” enthroned with everlasting power by the side of God. (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 347, 361, 367). Furthermore, he stated, “God Almighty Himself dwells in eternal fire; flesh and blood cannot go there, for all corruption is devoured by the fire.” (TPJS, p. 367). That’s a strange contradictory statement given his “revelation” in D&C 130:22 where he states that God has a body of flesh. Go figure!
This claim about “everlasting burnings” being the dwelling place of God is counter to the Book of Mormon and the Bible. In Mosiah 27:28 the prophet Alma writes, “Nevertheless, after wading through much tribulation, repenting nigh unto death, the Lord in mercy hath seen fit to snatch me out of an everlasting burning, and I am born of God.” The term, “everlasting burning” is used by Alma to describe the bowels of the pit of hell or the “potter’s wheel” from which he was rescued. Isaiah also speaks of “everlasting burnings” as something to be fearful of which again proves Smith’s incorrect usage of this term in his claims:
14 The sinners in Zion are afraid; fearfulness hath surprised the hypocrites. Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings? (Isa 33)
Returning to the matters at hand, the plan of our Heavenly Mother and Father is to provide opportunities for their children to grow. Line upon line. Degree by degree. Step by merciful step. With eternal lives as the mechanism of progression, God provides an infinite number of worlds that fill the Fibonacci sequence-like infinities for His children to progress. Can you imagine a plan so inadequate that a soul is only given a single chance to roll the dice of destiny in hopes of landing the correct combination of numbers in order not to be cast off forever— Mormonism teaches us that ONLY those destined for the highest degree of the celestial kingdom will be with God. If such was the plan of our God, then count me out. Let me off this train right now and I will eat, drink, and be merry all the remaining days of my life because there is no hope for me or for any of my fellow beings on this earth. Perhaps those on other earths were more fortunate than us—
We all fall short. And having my well-meaning Mormon friends and family say, “Jesus will make up the difference to get you into the celestial kingdom,” just doesn’t get me excited about a place in Smith’s 3-ring circus of celestial, terrestrial, and telestial destinations. As a sentient being of light, I want to choose either life or death for myself, and I want to explore and experience all that eternal lives has to offer me. Otherwise what is the purpose of mortality if not for God’s children to grow and advance? Alma knew and understood the plan of redemption and all that God provides to climb the staircase before us, or to descend into darkness and death. The choosing will be our own over a very long existence in this infinitely munificent and bountiful plan where Mother and Father are leading the way and we are following in their footsteps if we choose to do so. Alma said we can choose death and destruction likewise, following other steps into the dark.
Eternal lives answers all of the difficult questions about our experiences on earth. We are here to gather light unto ourselves! This is our primary purpose in mortality. We search the scriptures even The Word of God to find the truth and to lay aside the precepts of men which have entangled us in a web of lies and deceit. The church has imposed upon us the fraud and theology of one man who built a wall and his successors who daub it with untempered mortar (Ezek 13), all of whom stand in opposition to the weight of the Bible and Book of Mormon.
Reason for yourselves! Think these things out for yourself! Get out of the box you’re trapped in and ponder the infinite eternities and your place in it and God’s purpose as defined in scripture. God would no more cast off an errant or wayward soul who made some mistakes in one mortal life, than a mother would cast off her child for making mistakes. No wonder Jesus said to the Pharisees that the adulterer and publican will enter into the kingdom of God before them. Looking back over a lifetime of learning, it’s appalling that we ever allowed ourselves to believe this nonsense. My 11-year old self knew better, when I heard the Mormon plan of salvation preached the very first time. I instinctively shouted loudly in my mind, “That’s not true!” Please forgive the personal nature of this post. These things run deep in my soul.