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theplains

The pre-mortal life and progression

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I had some questions about two sections in the "Preparing for Exaltation - Teacher's Manual" and
Gospel Principles.

Lesson 2 - Agency: The Power to Choose

"Testify that each of us possesses the gift of agency, the freedom to choose between good and evil. 
We exercised our agency wisely to earn the right to come to earth. Now, in this life, we are 
responsible for each choice we make. Making righteous decisions puts us on the path toward eternal 
exaltation."

Lesson 3 - "The Fall of Adam and Eve."

"Because the Garden of Eden was a place of innocence, while Adam and Eve lived there they could 
not change or progress in any way, including having children (see 2 Nephi 2:22-23)."

What specifically does "innocence" imply?

Gospel Principles says, "Our Heavenly Father knew we could not progress beyond a certain point 
unless we left Him for a time."

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?

This following statement is present in the 1997 version of GP but was omitted from the 2009 version:

"Because Satan had introduced evil into the world, Adam and Eve and their children were separated 
from God both physically and spiritually."

What specific evil did Satan first introduce to Adam and Eve?

Thanks,
Jim

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11 minutes ago, theplains said:

"Because Satan had introduced evil into the world, Adam and Eve and their children were separated 
from God both physically and spiritually."

This may have been removed because Satan did not introduce evil in the world. The potential for evil existing is always there when man has been given the knowledge of good and evil. 
"For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam" (Mosiah 3:19)

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, theplains said:

What specifically does "innocence" imply?

Well IMO it really means a lack of knowledge at a deep level,  not just someone telling you facts but deeper.  We look at our children at an age below 8 years old and when a six year old hits some one we say they are not accountable because they have not got deep knowledge of the harm they are doing. Interesting side note at around 8 years old is when the two sides of the brain start to talk to each other.  

Edited by Metis_LDS
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56 minutes ago, theplains said:

..........................

What specifically does "innocence" imply?

As with children too young to make informed decisions, it implies no guilt and no blame for anything.

56 minutes ago, theplains said:

.................................

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?

The mature spirit children of God were not innocent, and were able to make crucial decisions to either obey or disobey God.  However, mortal life offered additional challenges to them, which they could not get in pre-mortal life.  Mortal experience and decision-making is crucial to advancement.

56 minutes ago, theplains said:

.............................What specific evil did Satan first introduce to Adam and Eve?..................

This can be taken to mean his ritual introduction of knowledge of good and evil to Eve and Adam by giving them "fruit" from a symbolic tree.  Only when they were aware of the law of opposition (see Lehi) could they make any good or evil choices.  It is like human children coming to the age of accountability.  Only then can they do evil.  Only then are they aware of the meaning of free agency.

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56 minutes ago, theplains said:

I had some questions about two sections in the "Preparing for Exaltation - Teacher's Manual" and
Gospel Principles.

Lesson 2 - Agency: The Power to Choose

"Testify that each of us possesses the gift of agency, the freedom to choose between good and evil. 
We exercised our agency wisely to earn the right to come to earth. Now, in this life, we are 
responsible for each choice we make. Making righteous decisions puts us on the path toward eternal 
exaltation."

Lesson 3 - "The Fall of Adam and Eve."

"Because the Garden of Eden was a place of innocence, while Adam and Eve lived there they could 
not change or progress in any way, including having children (see 2 Nephi 2:22-23)."

What specifically does "innocence" imply?

Gospel Principles says, "Our Heavenly Father knew we could not progress beyond a certain point 
unless we left Him for a time."

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?

This following statement is present in the 1997 version of GP but was omitted from the 2009 version:

"Because Satan had introduced evil into the world, Adam and Eve and their children were separated 
from God both physically and spiritually."

What specific evil did Satan first introduce to Adam and Eve?

Thanks,
Jim

1. Innocence here probably refers to the fact that with the veil drawn but a state of immortality they had no comprehension of birth, mortal life, death, good vs evil.  That is why Eve said in that state they would never have had children and would have been unable to fulfill God's command to multiply.

2. Yes, premortality was not as innocent a state as unfallen Eden.  There was conflict, understanding of mortality past and future, and rebellion.

3. Well the evil of rebellion, but more importantly through the fall to mortality by breaking laws of immortality.  

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I'm having a flashback of a deja vu...

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On 5/23/2019 at 5:01 PM, JAHS said:

This may have been removed because Satan did not introduce evil in the world. The potential for evil existing is always there when man has been given the knowledge of good and evil. 

Helaman 6:30 says Satan is the author of all sin.

What first sin do you believe Adam and Eve committed on Earth?

"For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam" (Mosiah 3:19)

What is "the natural man"?

Thanks,
Jim

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3 hours ago, theplains said:

Helaman 6:30 says Satan is the author of all sin.

What first sin do you believe Adam and Eve committed on Earth?

He may be the author of it but he did not introduce it to Adam and Eve. Once they knew the difference between good and evil they committed the sins authored by Satan on their own. He did not have to explain them to Adam and Eve. The Bible does not say what their first sin was. 
 

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On 5/23/2019 at 4:46 PM, theplains said:

I had some questions about two sections in the "Preparing for Exaltation - Teacher's Manual" and
Gospel Principles.

Lesson 2 - Agency: The Power to Choose

"Testify that each of us possesses the gift of agency, the freedom to choose between good and evil. 
We exercised our agency wisely to earn the right to come to earth. Now, in this life, we are 
responsible for each choice we make. Making righteous decisions puts us on the path toward eternal 
exaltation."

Lesson 3 - "The Fall of Adam and Eve."

"Because the Garden of Eden was a place of innocence, while Adam and Eve lived there they could 
not change or progress in any way, including having children (see 2 Nephi 2:22-23)."

What specifically does "innocence" imply?  There was no knowledge between good and evil - there was simply being. God talked to them and they followed him, not by actual choice, but because there was no concept of "me" and "my wants and desires". 

Gospel Principles says, "Our Heavenly Father knew we could not progress beyond a certain point 
unless we left Him for a time."

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?  No, I don't think so. The statement is incomplete. The pre-mortal life was spiritual and without a physical body. The purpose of this life was to gain experience and determine for ourselves what and who we would choose to follow. 

This following statement is present in the 1997 version of GP but was omitted from the 2009 version:

"Because Satan had introduced evil into the world, Adam and Eve and their children were separated 
from God both physically and spiritually."  Satan introduced the knowledge of good and evil by tempting our first parents to partake of the forbidden fruit. Before Satan's temptation, there was not a concept of disobeying God - God spoke and Adam and Eve followed. Satan was allowed to tempt our first parents and they succumbed to that temptation. 

What specific evil did Satan first introduce to Adam and Eve?  Ditto

Thanks,
Jim

Hello Jim, as is evident, I answered your questions using my understanding above. Always enjoy your thoughts and questions. 

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10 billion plus of our brothers and sisters exercised their agency in the premortal world in such a way as to be promised eternal life in the Celestial Kingdom.  

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On 5/23/2019 at 1:46 PM, theplains said:

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?

 

I would not call it "non-innocence" but free choice was obviously in operation since Lucifer, son of the Morning fell and took others with him.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, let’s roll said:

10 billion plus of our brothers and sisters exercised their agency in the premortal world in such a way as to be promised eternal life in the Celestial Kingdom.  

Promised a chance or promised for sure?  You mean those who died before 8?  If so, that implies all their deaths (even if murdered) were intended by God.

Or do you mean something else.

Edited by Calm

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26 minutes ago, Calm said:

Promised a chance or promised for sure?  You mean those who died before 8?  If so, that implies all their deaths (even if murdered) were intended by God.

Or do you mean something else.

Promised for sure.  Section 137 says they “are saved in the celestial kingdom of heaven.”

It illustrates that our premortal life was far more than the oversimplified narrative we too often use which implies the only significant event in our premortal life was the choice between God’s plan and Satan’s plan.  Our premortal life was much longer and included sufficient agency and opportunities for valiance so that billions of God’s children did not require the mortal probation we require to return to God’s presence.

I don’t believe this fact implies that God intended their deaths.  Rather, my belief is that those valiant saved souls were given the choice as to their sojourn in mortality.  The apt analogy being the Savior’s disciples in mortality whose valiance led to Jesus granting them the desire of their heart.  Some chose to be reunited quickly with Him in heaven, while others (e.g. 3 Nephites) chose to remain in mortality until He comes again.

Similarly, I believe those who gained the Celestial Kingdom in our premortal life were given the choice to sojourn on the earth only briefly and return to His presence before reaching the age of accountability or tarry.  Many clearly chose the former.  Others chose to live longer in mortality without gaining accountability (I have an adult son who is mentally unaccountable), that through their extended mortal lives the glory of God might be made manifest to those with whom they come in contact.  That has certainly been my experience with my son.

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Posted (edited)
19 minutes ago, let’s roll said:

Section 137 says they “are saved in the celestial kingdom of heaven.”

It doesn't say predestined to be saved though.

Do you believe all who die or are mentally unaccountable were destined in premortality, or are there some who die young, etc. who could have ended up in the other kingdoms in different circumstances (wasn't injured during the birth process or didn't get in a car accident as a baby that killed them)?

Edited by Calm

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8 hours ago, Calm said:

It doesn't say predestined to be saved though.

Do you believe all who die or are mentally unaccountable were destined in premortality, or are there some who die young, etc. who could have ended up in the other kingdoms in different circumstances (wasn't injured during the birth process or didn't get in a car accident as a baby that killed them)?

So some who are guaranteed salvation in the Celestial Kingdom before mortality receive that guarantee because of their valiance in our premortal life and some who have that same guarantee receive it as a result of unfortunate (or fortunate in the eternal sense) circumstances entirely outside their control?  I haven’t seen anything in scripture or prophetic teaching that supports anything but the former.  Additionally, the latter idea seems inconsistent with the eternal law of agency.

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On 5/23/2019 at 1:46 PM, theplains said:

I had some questions about two sections in the "Preparing for Exaltation - Teacher's Manual" and
Gospel Principles.

Lesson 2 - Agency: The Power to Choose

"Testify that each of us possesses the gift of agency, the freedom to choose between good and evil. 
We exercised our agency wisely to earn the right to come to earth. Now, in this life, we are 
responsible for each choice we make. Making righteous decisions puts us on the path toward eternal 
exaltation."

Lesson 3 - "The Fall of Adam and Eve."

"Because the Garden of Eden was a place of innocence, while Adam and Eve lived there they could 
not change or progress in any way, including having children (see 2 Nephi 2:22-23)."

What specifically does "innocence" imply?

I've had my own issues understanding that. 

2 Nephi 2:2-23 says 

22 And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.

23 And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin.

So, does this imply heavenly beings do not have children? Or does it imply that having children is part of the fall? Is it sinful to have children? Were they made incapable of having children until they fell? I have concluded that it is speaking in a spiritual sense. That to have spiritual children, they must fall, and then return to their parent(s). As Yeshua says, we must be born again. So, I have a somewhat different take on that scripture than the Church presently does perhaps. I personally believe there were humans on the earth before Adam, but that Adam represents the introduction of God's word to man, and therefore the beginning of sin. Adam could therefore not lead man back to God unless they fell. Being spiritually born requires a fall is how I interpret it.

On 5/23/2019 at 1:46 PM, theplains said:

Gospel Principles says, "Our Heavenly Father knew we could not progress beyond a certain point 
unless we left Him for a time."

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?

See above. Our pre-mortal life was a place of innocence. Nevertheless, we had agency, and could accept God's plan to come here and be tested, or could be thrust out with Satan to follow his will and plan. Having the ability to choose evil, is not evil in itself. 

On 5/23/2019 at 1:46 PM, theplains said:

This following statement is present in the 1997 version of GP but was omitted from the 2009 version:

"Because Satan had introduced evil into the world, Adam and Eve and their children were separated 
from God both physically and spiritually."

What specific evil did Satan first introduce to Adam and Eve?

Thanks,
Jim

Lying and breaking commandments given. Otherwise, man remained innocent, and God's word could have no effect on man.

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6 hours ago, let’s roll said:

some who are guaranteed salvation in the Celestial Kingdom before mortality 

Where does it say this in the scriptures?  That anyone has been guaranteed in premortality?

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, RevTestament said:

2 Nephi 2:2-23 says 

22 And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.

It just occurred to me that maybe the reason they could not have children is that they were in an eternal unchanging state.

The garden was theirs in perpetuity no new members acceptable.

Or something like that.

We tend to think that the reason was that reproduction was part of the Fall but this other view avoids that.

The implication of the other view is that sex is wrong and a "fallen" act. They had to fall for it to work.

This avoids that.

What do you think?

Edit

And this also accounts for Eve having to leave the garden because a change of her state had occurred. She had transgressed the deliberately ambiguous rule. She no longer qualified for the state of Innocence by breaking the rule, the Only Rule they had, ambiguous or not.

 And so she could not stay in the garden. But they also had the Commandment to multiply and replenish the Earth.

So with her outside the garden and Adam inside the garden that could not happen.

So it really was not that they could not reproduce unless they fell first it really was a practical consideration of a change in their Eternal state and how they would solve the issue.

Excuse extraneous capitals the word to text app I am using does that.

Edited by mfbukowski

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On 5/23/2019 at 1:46 PM, theplains said:

I had some questions about two sections in the "Preparing for Exaltation - Teacher's Manual" and
Gospel Principles.

Lesson 2 - Agency: The Power to Choose

"Testify that each of us possesses the gift of agency, the freedom to choose between good and evil. 
We exercised our agency wisely to earn the right to come to earth. Now, in this life, we are 
responsible for each choice we make. Making righteous decisions puts us on the path toward eternal 
exaltation."

Lesson 3 - "The Fall of Adam and Eve."

"Because the Garden of Eden was a place of innocence, while Adam and Eve lived there they could 
not change or progress in any way, including having children (see 2 Nephi 2:22-23)."

What specifically does "innocence" imply?

Gospel Principles says, "Our Heavenly Father knew we could not progress beyond a certain point 
unless we left Him for a time."

Does this mean the pre-mortal life was a place of non-innocence, where spirits were progressing with 
evil present so they could use their agency for or against?

This following statement is present in the 1997 version of GP but was omitted from the 2009 version:

"Because Satan had introduced evil into the world, Adam and Eve and their children were separated 
from God both physically and spiritually."

What specific evil did Satan first introduce to Adam and Eve?

Thanks,
Jim

These are great questions - I believe the Garden symbolizes all of our need to descend here in order to progress or descend into a lower sphere / state of existence in order to progress. There absolutely was some level of opposition during the premortal war - and synthesizing the state of innocence with the war against evil is important to understanding our own progression. 

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2 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

It just occurred to me that maybe the reason they could not have children is that they were in an eternal unchanging state.

The garden was theirs in perpetuity no new members acceptable.

Or something like that.

We tend to think that the reason was that reproduction was part of the Fall but this other view avoids that.

The implication of the other view is that sex is wrong and a "fallen" act. They had to fall for it to work.

This avoids that.

What do you think?

Edit

And this also accounts for Eve having to leave the garden because a change of her state had occurred. She had transgressed the deliberately ambiguous rule. She no longer qualified for the state of Innocence by breaking the rule, the Only Rule they had, ambiguous or not.

 And so she could not stay in the garden. But they also had the Commandment to multiply and replenish the Earth.

So with her outside the garden and Adam inside the garden that could not happen.

So it really was not that they could not reproduce unless they fell first it really was a practical consideration of a change in their Eternal state and how they would solve the issue.

Excuse extraneous capitals the word to text app I am using does that.

I don't take the garden of Eden story so literally. There was no literal fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, just like there is no literal fruit of the tree of life. They ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, the same way we do - by breaking commandments. When there were no commandments from God, man was in a state of innocence living simple lives as hunter-gatherers.. God gave Adam and Eve a commandment. They fell from innocence when they broke it. BTW Eve represents the Church. The Church sinned forcing Yeshua to lower Himself to the mortal state of man - much like Adam had to eat, so that man could be. The garden of Eden story represents the gospel in a nut shell. It represents the things of the temple. God made a temple for man - later ones man had to build. 

Without the fall, we could not become Yeshua's children - He could not beget us. There would be nothing to redeem us from. The same with Adam and Eve. They could not beget children spiritually, so the purpose of creation would be frustrated. Adam and Eve could apparently conceive children, but they could not beget them like God does. It's a deep teaching lesson about the nature of God....

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On 5/28/2019 at 9:18 PM, JAHS said:

He may be the author of it but he did not introduce it to Adam and Eve. Once they knew the difference between good and evil they committed the sins authored by Satan on their own. He did not have to explain them to Adam and Eve. The Bible does not say what their first sin was.

The Bible teaches about the first sin in Romans 5:12-21.  Death is a reference to spiritual
death initially; physical death followed later.

Alma chapter 42 mentions it too; using Adam and Eve as the prime examples of
the justice of God in the punishment of the sinner.

We also have these LDS Church teachings:
  
https://www.lds.org/study/ensign/2008/03/the-atonement-of-jesus-christ?lang=eng

The Gifts of Christ’s Atonement

Some gifts coming from the Atonement are universal, infinite, and unconditional. These 
include His ransom for Adam’s original transgression so that no member of the human 
family is held responsible for that sin.

For example, while all members of the human family are freely given a reprieve from 
Adam’s sin through no effort of their own, they are not given a reprieve from their 
own sins unless they pledge faith in Christ ...


https://www.lds.org/bc/content/shared/content/english/pdf/language-materials/35744_eng.pdf?lang=eng

Teachings of Presidents of the Church - Joseph F. Smith, chapter 10.

Death came upon us without the exercise of our agency; we had no hand in bringing it 
originally upon ourselves; it came be-cause of the transgression of our first parents. 
Therefore, man,who had no hand in bringing death upon himself, shall have no hand in 
bringing again life unto himself; for as he dies in consequence of the sin of Adam
so shall he live again, whether he will or not, by the righteousness of Jesus Christ, 
and the power of his resurrection. Every man that dies shall live again.


https://www.lds.org/ensign/1988/11/what-think-ye-of-christ?lang=eng

Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God the Eternal Father. He is our Creator. He 
is our Teacher. He is our Savior. His atonement paid for the sin of Adam and won victory 
over death, assuring resurrection and immortality for all men.

What are your thoughts about these teachings?

Thanks,
Jim

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, RevTestament said:

I don't take the garden of Eden story so literally. There was no literal fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, just like there is no literal fruit of the tree of life. They ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, the same way we do - by breaking commandments. When there were no commandments from God, man was in a state of innocence living simple lives as hunter-gatherers.. God gave Adam and Eve a commandment. They fell from innocence when they broke it. BTW Eve represents the Church. The Church sinned forcing Yeshua to lower Himself to the mortal state of man - much like Adam had to eat, so that man could be. The garden of Eden story represents the gospel in a nut shell. It represents the things of the temple. God made a temple for man - later ones man had to build. 

Without the fall, we could not become Yeshua's children - He could not beget us. There would be nothing to redeem us from. The same with Adam and Eve. They could not beget children spiritually, so the purpose of creation would be frustrated. Adam and Eve could apparently conceive children, but they could not beget them like God does. It's a deep teaching lesson about the nature of God....

Oh I don't take it literally either- in fact as you know it was clearly stated that it was only "figurative"- at least as to particular parts.

I just see my take on it to be another story - a way to make the stories work better that is more in line with the presentation.

I have never seen how reproduction had much to do with the story line making sense or why they could not fulfill all commandments while still in the garden, but I think that passage in 2 Nephi makes the story line stronger.  That's all I am saying.  

I suppose my point of view is a little different than most- as I see things all scripture COULD be literal- God could have done it that way if he wanted- I am certainly not up to the task of telling God what he cannot do!

On the other hand, I can see these all as allegories and symbolic presentations of ways of teaching that Jesus did on earth- he used parables and lessons which were not literal.

So I really don't take a position on whether something is literal or not typically because to me what is important is the LESSONS to be learned that make a difference in my life.  It is belief that makes a difference- not foundational "facts" that can never be known as facts except spiritually - and that gets us back to belief once again, as a matter of personal revelation. So for me testimony is all about- not facts and details, but learning the lessons we need to learn and knowing what principles God wants us to follow.  :)

In religious matters you only get to "knowledge" in ways that will not communicate to others who have not received the knowledge.

 

Edited by mfbukowski

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, mfbukowski said:

Oh I don't take it literally either- in fact as you know it was clearly stated that it was only "figurative"- at least as to particular parts.

I just see my take on it to be another story - a way to make the stories work better that is more in line with the presentation.

I have never seen how reproduction had much to do with the story line making sense or why they could not fulfill all commandments while still in the garden, but I think that passage in 2 Nephi makes the story line stronger.  That's all I am saying.  

I suppose my point of view is a little different than most- as I see things all scripture COULD be literal- God could have done it that way if he wanted- I am certainly not up to the task of telling God what he cannot do!

On the other hand, I can see these all as allegories and symbolic presentations of ways of teaching that Jesus did on earth- he used parables and lessons which were not literal.

So I really don't take a position on whether something is literal or not typically because to me what is important is the LESSONS to be learned that make a difference in my life.  It is belief that makes a difference- not foundational "facts" that can never be known as facts except spiritually - and that gets us back to belief once again, as a matter of personal revelation. So for me testimony is all about- not facts and details, but learning the lessons we need to learn and knowing what principles God wants us to follow.  :)

In religious matters you only get to "knowledge" in ways that will not communicate to others who have not received the knowledge.

I'm not sure if you are gently chastising me for imparting knowledge to those who have not received it, but I think the BoM teaches the same thing I am saying:

Helaman 14:16, 18

16 Yea, behold, this death bringeth to pass the resurrection, and redeemeth all mankind from the first death—that spiritual death; for all mankind, by the fall of Adam being cut off from the presence of the Lord, are considered as dead, both as to things temporal and to things spiritual.

Now Alma 42 does speak of a temporal death, but I read it in the sense of Alma 12:

Alma 12:16

16 And now behold, I say unto you then cometh a death, even a second death, which is a spiritual death; then is a time that whosoever dieth in his sins, as to a temporal death, shall also die a spiritual death; yea, he shall die as to things pertaining unto righteousness.

Alma 42:9

9 Therefore, as the soul could never die, and the fall had brought upon all mankind a spiritual death as well as a temporal, that is, they were cut off from the presence of the Lord, it was expedient that mankind should be reclaimed from this spiritual death.

So I read Alma 42 not saying the fall brought about temporal death - I guess that is different from prior leaders. It is just saying the spiritual death brought about by the fall is in addition to the temporal death man already experienced. To me the BoM makes it abundantly clear that the fall brought about spiritual death. It talks about it several times. This implies that they could not have children spiritually either until they could be led back from a spiritual death reborn into life. Again, to me this is talking about heavenly things - not temporal things. It is speaking in the same sense as things are in heaven. God cannot beget us in heaven, because we are in a state of innocence. Hence, necessitating a place where we can fall, and be tested. Adam was our leader and teacher in this regard, thus, he is father Adam in D&C, and we are their children. 

Edited by RevTestament
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On 5/29/2019 at 7:02 PM, theplains said:

The Bible teaches about the first sin in Romans 5:12-21.  Death is a reference to spiritual
death initially; physical death followed later.

Alma chapter 42 mentions it too; using Adam and Eve as the prime examples of
the justice of God in the punishment of the sinner.

We also have these LDS Church teachings:
  
https://www.lds.org/study/ensign/2008/03/the-atonement-of-jesus-christ?lang=eng

The Gifts of Christ’s Atonement

Some gifts coming from the Atonement are universal, infinite, and unconditional. These 
include His ransom for Adam’s original transgression so that no member of the human 
family is held responsible for that sin.

For example, while all members of the human family are freely given a reprieve from 
Adam’s sin through no effort of their own, they are not given a reprieve from their 
own sins unless they pledge faith in Christ ...


https://www.lds.org/bc/content/shared/content/english/pdf/language-materials/35744_eng.pdf?lang=eng

Teachings of Presidents of the Church - Joseph F. Smith, chapter 10.

Death came upon us without the exercise of our agency; we had no hand in bringing it 
originally upon ourselves; it came be-cause of the transgression of our first parents. 
Therefore, man,who had no hand in bringing death upon himself, shall have no hand in 
bringing again life unto himself; for as he dies in consequence of the sin of Adam
so shall he live again, whether he will or not, by the righteousness of Jesus Christ, 
and the power of his resurrection. Every man that dies shall live again.

https://www.lds.org/ensign/1988/11/what-think-ye-of-christ?lang=eng

Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God the Eternal Father. He is our Creator. He 
is our Teacher. He is our Savior. His atonement paid for the sin of Adam and won victory 
over death, assuring resurrection and immortality for all men.

What are your thoughts about these teachings?

Thanks,
Jim

Transgressions can mean the same as sins, but I was always taught that what Adam did was not really a sin but only a transgression of a commandment.
"We believe that we will be punished for our own sins and not for Adam's transgression."

He disobeyed a commandment of God but you can't really call it a sin because he did not know the difference between right or wrong yet.
The ability to choose between right and wrong is a requirement for someone to willfully and intentionally commit sin.
On those few places where church leaders use the word "sin" regarding what Adam did, if you asked them they would probably say they meant to say transgression. 
Or perhaps they used the word "sin" so the rest of the Christian world would know exactly what they are referring to.

Elder Richard G. Scott differentiates the two words:
"Broken law from sin or transgression causes anguish of mind and heart from an offended conscience. Knowing that all of His spirit children save His Only Begotten, Jesus Christ, would unintentionally (transgression) or intentionally (sin) violate His laws, our Eternal Father provided a means to correct the consequences of such acts. (Elder Richard G. Scott Peace of Conscience and Peace of Mind)

That's why I don't personally consider what Adam did was a sin. 

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On 5/29/2019 at 7:02 PM, theplains said:

The Bible teaches about the first sin in Romans 5:12-21.  Death is a reference to spiritual
death initially; physical death followed later.

Alma chapter 42 mentions it too; using Adam and Eve as the prime examples of
the justice of God in the punishment of the sinner.

We also have these LDS Church teachings:
  
https://www.lds.org/study/ensign/2008/03/the-atonement-of-jesus-christ?lang=eng

The Gifts of Christ’s Atonement

Some gifts coming from the Atonement are universal, infinite, and unconditional. These 
include His ransom for Adam’s original transgression so that no member of the human 
family is held responsible for that sin.

For example, while all members of the human family are freely given a reprieve from 
Adam’s sin through no effort of their own, they are not given a reprieve from their 
own sins unless they pledge faith in Christ ...


https://www.lds.org/bc/content/shared/content/english/pdf/language-materials/35744_eng.pdf?lang=eng

Teachings of Presidents of the Church - Joseph F. Smith, chapter 10.

Death came upon us without the exercise of our agency; we had no hand in bringing it 
originally upon ourselves; it came be-cause of the transgression of our first parents. 
Therefore, man,who had no hand in bringing death upon himself, shall have no hand in 
bringing again life unto himself; for as he dies in consequence of the sin of Adam
so shall he live again, whether he will or not, by the righteousness of Jesus Christ, 
and the power of his resurrection. Every man that dies shall live again.


https://www.lds.org/ensign/1988/11/what-think-ye-of-christ?lang=eng

Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God the Eternal Father. He is our Creator. He 
is our Teacher. He is our Savior. His atonement paid for the sin of Adam and won victory 
over death, assuring resurrection and immortality for all men.

What are your thoughts about these teachings?

Thanks,
Jim

Look at Moses 3:16, 17

God gave Adam an ambiguous commandment if we want to use that word. On one hand he said do not eat of the fruit of the tree, but on the other hand he said it is given unto thee. In the book of Moses at that time Eve had not even been created. However in the temple account she had been so there is a clarification there and the temple material which of course we will not discuss in detail.

The bottom line is that Eve had a different understanding than Adam did of the Commandment.

God had also commanded that they multiply and reproduce and fill the Earth. But they were unable to do that in the garden.

Eve was in a quandary. 

Eve saw the only solution is to to partake of the fruit, to make it possible for them to reproduce, and fulfill the other commandment God gave them.

It's not clear but it's possible that Eve saw that God actually wanted them to leave the garden so they could have free agency to make decisions.

And so she partook of the fruit. So was it a sin or not a sin? They had been given ambiguous instructions that Eve understood differently than Adam.

Long story short that is why it is understood as a transgression or a lesser offense than a full-fledged sin.

They were trying to make the best decision between two courses the good of which they could both see.

And in the long run that was actually God's will because that way we could come into the world and walk by faith and make our own decisions to be tested to see how we would be able to send or not send at this return to God. We are not compelled to do good we are not compelled to do evil. We may have a tendency to be carnal but our goal is to overcome that and live by faith and be saved by the grace of God after all that we can do to get a better reward than we might otherwise.

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