ILIGAN - i just want to ask WHAT IS THE
DIFFERRENce BETWEEN THE PRE-MORTAL LIFE AND CELESTIAL
KINGDOM? Because b4 we came here on earth we lived
in the pre-existence and we are here now in
the earth and we always hear that we come back in
the presence of Heavenly Father, meaning we go back
in the pre- mortal life.
JOEL - The pre-mortal world might be considered the Celestial kingdom for our heavenly parents where we were created as spirit beings.The scriptures tell us it resides somewhere near a star called Kolob (Abraham 3:1-4)
It is from this realm that our spirits come to inhabit our bodies.
When we die we do not go back into the pre-mortal life; we go to the spirit world (D&C 138: 7-16), which somehow occupies the same space as we do here on this planet
Joseph Smith taught:
"The spirits of the just are exalted to a greater and more glorious work; hence they are blessed in their departure to the world of spirits." The Prophet then added that "they are not far from us, and know and understand our thoughts, feelings, and motions, and are often pained therewith." (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, comp. Joseph Fielding Smith (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1976), p. 326)
In speaking of the nearness of the world of spirits, Parley P. Pratt wrote that "it is here on the very planet where we were born. The earth and all other planets of a like sphere, have their inward or spiritual spheres, as well as their outward, or temporal. The one is peopled by temporal tabernacles, and the other by spirits. A veil is drawn between the one sphere and the other, whereby all the objects in the spiritual sphere are rendered invisible to those in the temporal." (Parley P. Pratt, Key to the Science of Theology, 9th ed. (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1965), pp.126-27)
Our own future Celestial kingdom will be like God's Celestial kingdom(our pre-mortal world), but it will be made from the planet we live on now when it is changed. (D&C 130:8-10)
Until that happens and before the resurrection we will all reside in the spirit world. When the scriptures say things like, "the spirit shall return unto God who gave it." (Eccl 12:7); it does not mean that we will literally return to God's own Celestial kingdom. President Brigham Young explained that to speak of the spirit returning to the God means that our spirits "are prepared then to see, hear and understand spiritual things." To go into the "presence" of God is not necessarily to be "placed within a few yards or rods, or within a short distance of his person." (JOD 3:368, JOD 16:365).
Acccording to President Joseph Fielding Smith, when Alma says, that 'the spirits of all men, as soon as they are departed from this mortal body .... are taken home to that God who gave them life,' (Alma 40:11-14), he does not intend to convey the thought that all spirits literally go back into the presence of God. "Taken home to God," (Eccl 12:7.) simply means that their mortal existence has come to an end, and they have returned to the world of spirits, where they are assigned to a place according to their works with the just or with the unjust, there to await the resurrection." (Answers to Gospel Questions, vol. 2)
God presides over the activities in the spirit world. This fact certainly qualifies as meaning that we really are returning to Him when we enter that realm.
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