Posted by: blackfootsmj1 | April 29, 2011

Marriage for Time and Eternity–A doctrine unique to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that marriages performed in holy temples are “sealed,” or blessed to last for eternity. The concept that the family unit can continue after death is a core, unique, belief of Mormons.

The concept of eternal families comes from scripture and modern-day revelation. For instance, in the New Testament in Matthew 16:19, Jesus Christ tells the Apostle Peter: “And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” The Church equates the word “bind” with “seal.” It is this power to bind that also seals children to their parents and is the basis of Church teachings regarding eternal families.

However, the statement by Paul, “neither is the man without the woman, neither the woman without the man, in the Lord”,in 1 Corinthians 11 isn’t just good just good advice, or a good philosophy. It is central to our Father’s plan for us.

Consider also the statement by the Lord in Matt 19:16, the Savior himself settles the question on the divine destiny of those who have their marriage sealed by proper Priesthood authority. “Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.”

President Spencer W. Kimball, in a talk entitled the Importance of Celestial Marriage says:

“Now, since life is eternal—and that is absolutely certain—true marriage must also be eternal. It is a most important event and a most necessary one. Marriage by civil officers or local leaders is “till death do you part,” and terminates with death. Only celestial marriage extends beyond the grave. Celestial marriage is performed in holy temples erected and dedicated for that special purpose. Only such marriage transcends the grave and perpetuates the husband/wife and parent/child relationships.”

Civil marriages are definitely ended when death comes. That is absolute. The Lord has so declared it. (In Matt 22)

23 The same day came to him the Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him,

 24 Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.

 25 Now there were with us seven brethren: and the first, when he had married a wife, deceased, and, having no issue, left his wife unto his brother:

 26 Likewise the second also, and the third, unto the seventh.

 27 And last of all the woman died also.

 28 Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her.

 29 Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.

 30 For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven.

For me there has always been a simple example of the truth of this doctrine. As a young boy, I lived on a farm in Southeastern Idaho. I remember the times when we would always wean the calves from their mothers, the cows. The first few days the calves and the cows would cry and moo for the other. It would last all through the night. However, after about a week, both have completely forgotten about each other and the relationship ends. No more mother and her calf. They are on their own, separated and forgotten.

Compare the love of a spouse or the love of a mother for her child. I know the love is eternal. Even if a mother were to lose a baby in a miscarriage or even as baby–never, never, would she forget that child. That is because the intention of our Heavenly Father is to allow and facilitate that love to continue forever. And as we are faithful, we show God that we are capable to take care of our own family, and He will trust us with them for eternity.

Some may say that it’s just wishful thinking on my part. Others it’s just that we’ve developed some close ties here on this Earth. As grand as heaven may seem for some. Heaven would not be heaven, for me, without my family or future wife and children. I could not imagine life without them. I find hope in knowing that families can and will be together forever through our Heavenly Fathers plan.

I know that God has a plan for each of us. I know that His ways are eternal. I know that He intends for our families to be together forever. That is His hope for each of us. And we can all know this doctrine to be true through the power of the Holy Ghost. And as it is said in the Book of Mormon, truly the “sting of death is swallowed up in Christ” (Mosiah 16:8). I testify of this truth. I know I will be with my wife and family long after this life is over. I am so grateful for that knowledge and for a loving Heavenly Father who created the perfect plan for us all.

Oquirrh Mountain Temple Sealing Room

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