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Lesson 9 - Identifying the Kingdom of God


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I'm into lesson 9 of the manual (Religion 275) now and had a question on this quote.

Pages 40-41 - Explain that the "kingdom of God" has at least two separate meanings—one earthly 
and one celestial. Invite a student to read aloud the following statement by Elder Bruce R. 
McConkie (1915–85) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and help students understand that in 
Alma 7:19 the "kingdom of God" refers to the celestial kingdom:

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as it is now constituted is the kingdom of 
God on earth. ... In the eternal worlds, the celestial kingdom is the kingdom of God. ... The 
gospel is designed to prepare men for an inheritance in the celestial kingdom of God" (Mormon 
Doctrine, 2nd ed. [1966], 415–17.)

Page 42 - Sin leads to spiritual death and prevents us from entering God's kingdom.

If the earthly and celestial divisions constitute the Kingdom of God as the church teaches, 
then will the misery of the telestial inhabitants be just as severe as the terrestrials 
because both groups did not endure to the end and were cast out; where there will be weeping 
and gnashing of teeth (Alma 11:40; 2 Nephi 31:16, 20; 3 Nephi 27:17; Matthew 8:11-12; 
Luke 13:27-29)?

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3 minutes ago, marineland said:

I'm into lesson 9 of the manual (Religion 275) now and had a question on this quote.

Pages 40-41 - Explain that the "kingdom of God" has at least two separate meanings—one earthly 
and one celestial. Invite a student to read aloud the following statement by Elder Bruce R. 
McConkie (1915–85) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and help students understand that in 
Alma 7:19 the "kingdom of God" refers to the celestial kingdom:

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as it is now constituted is the kingdom of 
God on earth. ... In the eternal worlds, the celestial kingdom is the kingdom of God. ... The 
gospel is designed to prepare men for an inheritance in the celestial kingdom of God" (Mormon 
Doctrine, 2nd ed. [1966], 415–17.)

Page 42 - Sin leads to spiritual death and prevents us from entering God's kingdom.

If the earthly and celestial divisions constitute the Kingdom of God as the church teaches, 
then will the misery of the telestial inhabitants be just as severe as the terrestrials 
because both groups did not endure to the end and were cast out; where there will be weeping 
and gnashing of teeth (Alma 11:40; 2 Nephi 31:16, 20; 3 Nephi 27:17; Matthew 8:11-12; 
Luke 13:27-29)?

Do you mean before resurrection and residence in a kingdom of heavenly glory?  Because I think by the time someone is either Terrestrial or Telestial, they are doing just fine and no gnashing of teeth is required. Unless they just enjoy doing it. 
 

If you mean prior to judgment where they are in Spirit Prison, not sure rating who suffers more works, but if it isn’t actually irrelevant I suppose the Telestials suffer the most because they do not really repent out of love of Christ or anyone else or desire to be good, which I think would make a big difference on how much they on their own must go through to be purified.  Having Christ’s help likely makes a difference even if there isn’t a full out acceptance of the Atonement, giving of one’s will to God. 

Edited by Calm
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4 minutes ago, Calm said:

Do you mean before resurrection and residence in a kingdom of heavenly glory?  Because I think by the time someone is either Terrestrial or Telestial, they are doing just fine and no gnashing of teeth is required. Unless they just enjoy doing it. 

Supposing I avoid outer darkness, I'll let you know what it's like down there in the telestial. 

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You think you qualify for Outer Darkness?  Do you actually know Christ is Lord and yet you are denying he exists?  I just don’t see it. 
 

From the description, maybe a prophet (little p, which means it could be the guy next door as not all prophets are called to be church leaders imo) can make it to Outer Darkness if after accepting the fullness of the Atonement and a revelation of Christ that turns faith into pure knowledge, they then become actual Satanists for some bizarre reason (as in actually worshiping evil, not the religious version out there today).

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Just now, Calm said:

You think you qualify for Outer Darkness?  Do you actually know Christ is Lord and yet you are denying he exists?  I just don’t see it. 
 

From the description, maybe a prophet (little p, which means it could be the guy next door as not all prophets are called to be church leaders imo) can make it to Outer Darkness if after accepting the fullness of the Atonement and a revelation of Christ that turns faith into pure knowledge, they then become actual Satanists for some bizarre reason (as in actually worshiping evil, not the religious version out there today).

I'm just in a sarcastic mood today. Sorry if my joke fell a little flat.

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It is rather arrogant Imo to believe one might be headed towards Outer Darkness, to believe that out of all the billions of humans that have lived, you are one of the UnChosen Few.

Have you had the experience that the third part had, the heavens open and given you a perfect knowledge of God and you are now in open rebellion, warring with God?  If not, you are not headed for OD. 
 

If you aren’t sure you are headed for OD, you are not headed for it. And chances are even if you are, you are not. We are talking Big Evil here.

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7 minutes ago, jkwilliams said:

I'm just in a sarcastic mood today. Sorry if my joke fell a little flat.

I have known a few people who claim they are going or that if they lost faith, they would, so I see it as quite possible for people to have the wrong idea on what gets you there. 
 

Unless you are basically teaming up with Satan, you don’t qualify (speaking generically)…though you might end up fighting him for boss rights.  I think it takes that level of arrogance and self-absorption. 

Edited by Calm
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Just now, Calm said:

It is rather arrogant Imo to believe one might be headed towards Outer Darkness, to believe that out of all the billions of humans that have lived, you are one of the UnChosen Few.

Have you had the experience that the third part had, the heavens open and given you a perfect knowledge of God and you are now in open rebellion, warring with God?  If not, you are not headed for OD. 
 

If you aren’t sure you are headed for OD, you are not headed for it. And chances are even if you are, you are not. We are talking Big Evil here.

True enough. I'd say D&C 76:79 is spot on with me, so maybe there's hope for the terrestrial. 

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20 hours ago, Calm said:

Do you mean before resurrection and residence in a kingdom of heavenly glory?  Because I think by the time someone is either Terrestrial or Telestial, they are doing just fine and no gnashing of teeth is required. Unless they just enjoy doing it. 
 

If you mean prior to judgment where they are in Spirit Prison, not sure rating who suffers more works,

Regarding your first point, I think those passages refer to after resurrection.

Regarding your second point, the introduction notes to Alma 40 says, "The righteous dead go to paradise
and the wicked to outer darkness to await the day of their resurrection
."

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2 hours ago, marineland said:

Regarding your first point, I think those passages refer to after resurrection.

Why?  Why would there be suffering in heaven?

Quote

Regarding your second point, the introduction notes to Alma 40 says, "The righteous dead go to paradise
and the wicked to outer darkness to await the day of their resurrection
."

https://www.churchofjesuschrist.org/study/manual/gospel-principles/chapter-41-the-postmortal-spirit-world?lang=eng
 

Quote

What Are the Conditions in the Postmortal Spirit World?

The prophet Alma in the Book of Mormon taught about two divisions or states in the spirit world:

“The spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow.

“And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of the wicked, yea, who are evil—for behold, they have no part nor portion of the Spirit of the Lord; for behold, they chose evil works rather than good; therefore the spirit of the devil did enter into them, and take possession of their house—and these shall be cast out into outer darkness; there shall be weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth, and this because of their own iniquity, being led captive by the will of the devil.

“Now this is the state of the souls of the wicked, yea, in darkness, and a state of awful, fearful looking for the fiery indignation of the wrath of God upon them; thus they remain in this state, as well as the righteous in paradise, until the time of their resurrection” (Alma 40:12–14).

The spirits are classified according to the purity of their lives and their obedience to the will of the Lord while on earth. The righteous and the wicked are separated (see 1 Nephi 15:28–30), but the spirits may progress as they learn gospel principles and live in accordance with them. The spirits in paradise can teach the spirits in prison (see D&C 138).

For teachers: To help class members or family members understand the differences between paradise and spirit prison, consider drawing a vertical line in the middle of the board or on a large piece of paper, making two columns. At the top of one column, write State of the Righteous. At the top of the other column, write State of the Wicked. Ask members to describe each state in the spirit world, based on their reading in this section. Summarize their comments in the appropriate columns.

Paradise

According to the prophet Alma, the righteous spirits rest from earthly care and sorrow. Nevertheless, they are occupied in doing the work of the Lord. President Joseph F. Smith saw in a vision that immediately after Jesus Christ was crucified, He visited the righteous in the spirit world. He appointed messengers, gave them power and authority, and commissioned them to “carry the light of the gospel to them that were in darkness, even to all the spirits of men” (D&C 138:30).

The Church is organized in the spirit world, and priesthood holders continue their responsibilities there (see D&C 138:30). President Wilford Woodruff taught: “The same Priesthood exists on the other side of the veil. … Every Apostle, every Seventy, every Elder, etc., who has died in the faith as soon as he passes to the other side of the veil, enters into the work of the ministry” (Deseret News, Jan. 25, 1882, 818).

Family relationships are also important. President Jedediah M. Grant, a counselor to Brigham Young, saw the spirit world and described to Heber C. Kimball the organization that exists there: “He said that the people he there saw were organized in family capacities. … He said, ‘When I looked at families, there was a deficiency in some, … for I saw families that would not be permitted to come and dwell together, because they had not honored their calling here’” (Deseret News, Dec. 10, 1856, 316–17).

Spirit Prison

The Apostle Peter referred to the postmortal spirit world as a prison, which it is for some (see 1 Peter 3:18–20). In the spirit prison are the spirits of those who have not yet received the gospel of Jesus Christ. These spirits have agency and may be enticed by both good and evil. If they accept the gospel and the ordinances performed for them in the temples, they may leave the spirit prison and dwell in paradise.

Also in the spirit prison are those who rejected the gospel after it was preached to them either on earth or in the spirit prison. These spirits suffer in a condition known as hell. They have removed themselves from the mercy of Jesus Christ, who said, “Behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent; but if they would not repent they must suffer even as I; which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit” (D&C 19:16–18). After suffering for their sins, they will be allowed, through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, to inherit the lowest degree of glory, which is the telestial kingdom.

 

Edited by Calm
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Russell, do you mean before they became inhabitants of these kingdoms or during the eternities to come they will be suffering?  If the latter….Why would there be misery in Heaven?

I think it highly confusing to label anyone terrestrial, Telestial, or Celestial for any state before judgment and resurrection. It seems quite inaccurate to me. 

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On 8/1/2022 at 2:20 PM, marineland said:

I'm into lesson 9 of the manual (Religion 275) now and had a question on this quote.

Pages 40-41 - Explain that the "kingdom of God" has at least two separate meanings—one earthly 
and one celestial. Invite a student to read aloud the following statement by Elder Bruce R. 
McConkie (1915–85) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and help students understand that in 
Alma 7:19 the "kingdom of God" refers to the celestial kingdom:

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as it is now constituted is the kingdom of 
God on earth. ... In the eternal worlds, the celestial kingdom is the kingdom of God. ... The 
gospel is designed to prepare men for an inheritance in the celestial kingdom of God" (Mormon 
Doctrine, 2nd ed. [1966], 415–17.)

Page 42 - Sin leads to spiritual death and prevents us from entering God's kingdom.

If the earthly and celestial divisions constitute the Kingdom of God as the church teaches, 
then will the misery of the telestial inhabitants be just as severe as the terrestrials 
because both groups did not endure to the end and were cast out; where there will be weeping 
and gnashing of teeth (Alma 11:40; 2 Nephi 31:16, 20; 3 Nephi 27:17; Matthew 8:11-12; 
Luke 13:27-29)?

It's a matter of degree. The description of the "two ways"  illustrates the potential in either direction.

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58 minutes ago, Russell said:

I agree with your second statement, and I would not be calling them "___________ inhabitants" if they were not inhabitants of those ____________ divisions in heaven.  So I'm talking about after those people are resurrected and inhabiting those particular divisions of heaven.

One way I can imagine telestial inhabitants being miserable, even in the telestial division of heaven, is by them realizing they could have fared much better in the end if they had made better choices in their lives by repenting when they thought they should have repented.  If they do realize where they are, I think they may also realize that they could have ended up living in either the terrestrial or celestial divisions of heaven, and why they didn't end up in one of those better divisions of heaven.  But maybe I am wrong and they would not be miserable in any way at all, maybe not even realizing where they are except for calling that place heaven, obliviously ignorant of how much better their lives could have been while believing they are in the best place they could have possibly ended up in.  

I see happiness and misery as subjectively relative terms.  Some people can be happy in a place where some other people would only be miserable there, and those miserable people would want somewhere else to live where they would be happy or happier.  Some people do not like what other people like, or choose to call good.  Our Father in heaven knows all of this and will be taking everyone's personal preferences in mind when determining where to send everybody.

Hi Ahab.  That was a quick reincarnation this time. 

Edited by pogi
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11 minutes ago, Russell said:

Have you reviewed the board rules recently?  Let's just focus on sharing and debating the topics of threads rather than making straw men, shall we?

 

BANNED BEHAVIORS include but are not limited to:

• Insulting language, or statements meant to do nothing more than provoke others

• Personal attacks or squabbles (dispute opinions not persons)

• Derailing threads with irrelevant or unwanted commentary

• Violating standard rules of debate such as extreme comparisons and hyperbole

• Spreading malicious gossip

• Posting personal or identifying information about others

 

My name is Russell and I forbid you to refer to me by any name other than Russell. 

Are you categorically denying you have ever used any another alias on the board that has been banned?

Because using a different alias to get around a ban is also a banned behaviour.

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46 minutes ago, Russell said:

Have you reviewed the board rules recently?  Let's just focus on sharing and debating the topics of threads rather than making straw men, shall we?

 

BANNED BEHAVIORS include but are not limited to:

• Insulting language, or statements meant to do nothing more than provoke others

• Personal attacks or squabbles (dispute opinions not persons)

• Derailing threads with irrelevant or unwanted commentary

• Violating standard rules of debate such as extreme comparisons and hyperbole

• Spreading malicious gossip

• Posting personal or identifying information about others

 

My name is Russell and I forbid you to refer to me by any name other than Russell. 

I would be genuinely and politely confused at the friendly and yet misdirected salutation from a stranger.  But I guess that hasn't worked for you in the past either... 

You seem to be rather triggered and not surprised or confused at all at my friendly salutation.  Generally, people don't forcefully forbid strangers over simple mistakes.  It's like you know me, dislike me, and understand exactly where I am coming from.   Why is that "Russel"?  

If you cared about the board rules Ahab, you wouldn't be here. 

 

Edited by pogi
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20 minutes ago, Russell said:

Sheesh.  

Classic!

26 minutes ago, Russell said:

less straw men and distraction.

I'll tell you what, if you agree to fewer sock puppets and deception (as in, stop it), I'll commit to fewer strawmen and distraction. Deal? 

You are really not being fair to new board members in causing us to suspect ever. single. one.   That is not fair to us or them.  

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On 8/1/2022 at 11:20 AM, marineland said:

I'm into lesson 9 of the manual (Religion 275) now and had a question on this quote.

Pages 40-41 - Explain that the "kingdom of God" has at least two separate meanings—one earthly 
and one celestial. Invite a student to read aloud the following statement by Elder Bruce R. 
McConkie (1915–85) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, and help students understand that in 
Alma 7:19 the "kingdom of God" refers to the celestial kingdom:

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as it is now constituted is the kingdom of 
God on earth. ... In the eternal worlds, the celestial kingdom is the kingdom of God. ... The 
gospel is designed to prepare men for an inheritance in the celestial kingdom of God" (Mormon 
Doctrine, 2nd ed. [1966], 415–17.)

Page 42 - Sin leads to spiritual death and prevents us from entering God's kingdom.

If the earthly and celestial divisions constitute the Kingdom of God as the church teaches, 
then will the misery of the telestial inhabitants be just as severe as the terrestrials 
because both groups did not endure to the end and were cast out; where there will be weeping 
and gnashing of teeth (Alma 11:40; 2 Nephi 31:16, 20; 3 Nephi 27:17; Matthew 8:11-12; 
Luke 13:27-29)?

The Terrestrial and Telestial kingdoms are kingdoms of glory.  Whatever suffering that exists in those kingdoms is self inflicted on the individual.  The kingdom itself is not causing the suffering. I think for those who get those kingdoms and have the memories of their premortal life returned to them, they will know what they lost.  It will be an eternity of regret of "if only I did this" and "if only I did not do that" they would have arrived at something far better.  Decisions made that can never be undone.  That is the source of the weeping.  Not that they are living in a terrible place.  Quite the opposite.

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1 hour ago, carbon dioxide said:

The Terrestrial and Telestial kingdoms are kingdoms of glory.  Whatever suffering that exists in those kingdoms is self inflicted on the individual.  The kingdom itself is not causing the suffering. I think for those who get those kingdoms and have the memories of their premortal life returned to them, they will know what they lost.  It will be an eternity of regret of "if only I did this" and "if only I did not do that" they would have arrived at something far better.  Decisions made that can never be undone.  That is the source of the weeping.  Not that they are living in a terrible place.  Quite the opposite.

And scripture backs that up:

Quote

Mosiah 2:36–39

36 And now, I say unto you, my brethren, that after ye have known and have been taught all these things, if ye should transgress and go contrary to that which has been spoken, that ye do withdraw yourselves from the Spirit of the Lord, that it may have no place in you to guide you in wisdom’s paths that ye may be blessed, prospered, and preserved—  37 I say unto you, that the man that doeth this, the same cometh out in open rebellion against God; therefore he listeth to obey the evil spirit, and becometh an enemy to all righteousness; therefore, the Lord has no place in him, for he dwelleth not in unholy temples.  38 Therefore if that man repenteth not, and remaineth and dieth an enemy to God, the demands of divine justice do awaken his immortal soul to a lively sense of his own guilt, which doth cause him to shrink from the presence of the Lord, and doth fill his breast with guilt, and pain, and anguish, which is like an unquenchable fire, whose flame ascendeth up forever and ever.  39 And now I say unto you, that mercy hath no claim on that man; therefore his final doom is to endure a never-ending torment.

And so does Joseph Smith:

"A man is his own tormentor and his own condemner. Hence the saying, They shall go into the lake that burns with fire and brimstone.  The torment of disappointment in the mind of man is as exquisite as a lake burning with fire and brimstone. I say, so is the torment of man."  (History of the Church, Vol.6, Ch.14, p.314)

Edited by InCognitus
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5 hours ago, pogi said:

Classic!

I'll tell you what, if you agree to fewer sock puppets and deception (as in, stop it), I'll commit to fewer strawmen and distraction. Deal? 

You are really not being fair to new board members in causing us to suspect ever. single. one.   That is not fair to us or them.  

I wonder if he were able to get out of banned jail if he could come on here as Ahab and that would solve the problem.

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On 8/1/2022 at 12:23 PM, Calm said:

Do you mean before resurrection and residence in a kingdom of heavenly glory?  Because I think by the time someone is either Terrestrial or Telestial, they are doing just fine and no gnashing of teeth is required. Unless they just enjoy doing it. ...

:D :rofl: :D :rofl: :D 

P.S.: Now, if you'll excuse me, I haven't gotten my exercise for the day yet.  I think I'll go gnash my teeth a little. :D 

Edited by Kenngo1969
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On 8/2/2022 at 1:05 PM, Calm said:

Why?  Why would there be suffering in heaven?

Not suffering in heaven, but suffering after their mortal death (Alma 40:11-14); continuing after
their resurrection (Alma 40:23-26).

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