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CHAD - I've heard for years that after final judgement, if you end up assigned to any kingdom lower than the Highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom, that you will live through eternity in the sphere that you are assigned, without a spouse, and since you'll have no spouse, intimacy will no longer be needed or allowed, therefor you'll need no sexual parts, and you won't have any. Have you heard this or read this anywhere? Even if so, I would not be surprised if Heaven had even greater experiences in store for our existence, that far exceeds the Earthly experiences of intimacy. Although sex may continue only for those in the highest kingdom, those in the lower kingdoms may have other joyful experiences surpassing what we know here, in this carnal state.

JOEL - Don't believe everything you have "heard". I know of no doctrine that describes what kind of intimacy we will experience in the Celestial Kingdom nor have I seen anything that tells us we will loose any body parts. The only thing we know we will not have is blood, nor any physical infirmaties we had in life.

Joseph Fielding Smith said:
"Those who receive the exaltation in the celestial kingdom will have the 'continuation of the seeds forever.' They will live in the family relationship. In the terrestrial and in the telestial kingdoms there will be no marriage. Those who enter there will remain 'separately and singly' forever. Some of the functions in the celestial body will not appear in the terrestrial body, neither in the telestial body, and the power of procreation will be removed." (Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 2:28788)

I don't think removing the power of procreation equates to the removal of body parts. Those in the two lower degrees of the Celestial Kingdom will indeed not have eternal spouses (D&C 131:1-4), but will be ministering angels to those in the highest level and perhaps to those in lower kingdoms (D&C 132:16).

If we somehow become Gods we will in some way produce spiritual offspring; the same as our Father and Mother in heaven did; but we don't know exactly how it will be done.

Spencer W. Kimball wrote,
"Our spirit matter was eternal and co-existent with God, but it was organized into spirit bodies by our Heavenly Father" (The Miracle of Forgiveness, p. 5, Salt Lake City, 1969).

Marion G. Romney, of the First Presidency, speaking of people's divine origin as children of God, stated, "Through that birth process, self-existing intelligence was organized into individual spirit beings" (Ensign 8 [Nov. 1978]:14).

So how does a Heavenly Mother and Father "organize" spirit bodies? We can't even speculate as to how an immortal exalted resurrected husband and wife with physical bodies can produce spirit offspring. But here's an interesting quote from Elder Melvin J. Ballard:

"What do we mean by endless or eternal increase? We mean that through the righteousness and faithfulness of men and women who keep the commandments of God they will come forth with celestial bodies, fitted and prepared to enter into their great, high and eternal glory in the celestial kingdom of God; and unto them, through their preparation, there will come children, who will be spirit children. I don't think that is very difficult to comprehend and understand. The nature of the offspring is determined by the nature of the substance that flows in the veins of the being. When blood flows in the veins of the being, the offspring will be what blood produces, which is tangible flesh and bone, but when that which flows in the veins is spirit matter, a substance which is more refined and pure and glorious than blood, the offspring of such beings will be spirit children. By that I mean they will be in the image of the parents. They will have a spirit body and have a spark of the eternal or divine that always did exist in them." (--Melvin J. Ballard, Teachings of the Latter-day Prophets, SLC: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 1986, pg. 386.)

Interpret that as you will.

CHAD - Also, I wonder if lower kingdom's of Heaven could ever really be Heaven, to those members of the church who continue to try to be faithful and try to keep all the commandments, but live a life of struggle, failure, repentance, and growth & improvement, then back through the same cycle again - but in the end, fall short because of what some general authorities have called a few favorite sins that we keep in our back pocket, that we might struggle with for years, or until this life is over. It seems like we all live this cycle to some degree.

Joel - We do all live such a cycle to varying degrees, but as long as we keep trying and don't give up we will be allowed to progress towards exaltation. Noone can become completely perfect in this life. Therefore our journey towards perfection will continue after the second coming in the Millennium. Those who truly want it and keep working at it will eventually succeed and will end up at least somewhere in the Celestial Kingdom. The key point being to never give up or in other words endure to the end (Matt 24:13). Those who do end up in a lower kingdom will have some regrets. Joseph Fielding Smith said:

"Of course, those who enter the telestial kingdom, and those who enter the terrestrial kingdom will have the eternal punishment which will come to them in knowing that they might, if they had kept the commandments of the Lord, have returned to his presence as his sons and his daughters. This will be a torment to them, and in that sense it will be hell." (Answers to Gospel Questions, 2:208-10, TLDP:127).

But they will still exist in comfort and some state of happiness in a kingdom that corresponds to what they have become(D&C 88:2224).

CHAD - I know for many people, in other churches, who never believed in eternal marriage, and only believe that Heaven is a wonderful place of paradise, without pain or suffering or fear, - they will get exactly what they expect, or maybe even better. If they live a half way decent life, without hurting others, but without interest in the Lord's full teachings, their Heaven will be exactly or better than what they expect. The Terrestrial Kingdom may be better than they ever imagined Heaven would be. I believe Brigham Young said that if we could get a glimpse of even the lowest Kingdom, we might end our life to get there, because it's so wonderful. Even so, to me, none of it means anything without my wife.

JOEL - I agree.

CHAD - But for members of our church, who are striving and struggling toward being with their families forever, to be with their spouse forever, if they end up with anything less, even as wonderful as perhaps the middle portion of the Celestial Kingdom will be, if they end up with less than eternity with the spouse they love, I would think that it would be difficult to feel like Heaven was "Heaven" ~ and that's forever. Do you think Heaven will ever be Heaven to those who fall just a hair short, and end up in the middle kingdom of the Celestial Kingdom?

JOEL - I have no idea. But God knows the desires of our hearts; knows what we can and can't do and sees our strugglings as sincere efforts to do what is right. I hope His grace will make up the difference and allow all those who want it to receive exaltation with their spouses.

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