SHAWN - I have a question regarding Moroni. In the
Introduction to the Book of Mormon, Moroni is
described as "a glorified, resurrected being".
"On September 21, 1823, the same Moroni, then a glorified, resurrected being, appeared to the Prophet Joseph Smith and instructed him relative to the ancient record and its destined translation into the English language." (BOM Intro)
In the Doctrine and Covenants, Moroni is said to be an angel.
"And again, what do we hear? Glad tidings from Cumorah! Moroni, an angel from heaven,..."
I am curious. Can we determine from this that Moroni did not receive exaltation since he has already been resurrected? For example, Doctrine and Covenants says that Abraham has been exalted.
"Abraham received all things, whatsoever he received, by revelation and commandment, by my word, saith the Lord, and hath entered into his exaltation and sitteth upon his throne."
According to verse 37, Isaac and Jacob also have received exaltation. It says that they are not angels but are gods. I realize that this has nothing to do with me personally, I am just curious (and possibly some others as well) if you know of any official statement that has been made regarding the eternal destination of Moroni.
JOEL - Even though Moroni was called an angel, it does not mean that he has not or will not be exalted. There are different kinds of angels serving in different capacities at different times.
Any messenger from God can be considered an angel, regardless of the status of their soul at the time. They can be spirits that have not yet received a body, a translated being, or one who has been resurrected.
There are certain of God's servants who have been resurrected so they could perform required priesthood ordinances relative to the restoration of the Church.
John the Baptist and Peter and James were resurrected so they could confer the priesthoods on Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. Moroni was resurrected so he could physically deliver the gold plates to Joseph Smith and interact with him.
So these "angels", although resurrected, have probably not yet actually received their exaltation, but certainly, being prophets of God, will be exalted some time in the eternal future after the final judgment.
I know of no other scriptures or "official" doctrine that specifically describes Moroni's current status as being anything other than a glorified resurrected being.
In D&C 132 where it says that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are not angels but are gods; it is not refering to the kind of angel that Moroni was, but rather those described in the following verses found earlier in Section 132, who were not married by the new and everlasting covenant:
"Therefore, when they are out of the world they neither marry nor are given in marriage; but are appointed angels in heaven, which angels are ministering servants, to minister for those who are worthy of a far more, and an exceeding, and an eternal weight of glory.
For these angels did not abide my law; therefore, they cannot be enlarged, but remain separately and singly, without exaltation, in their saved condition, to all eternity; and from henceforth are not gods, but are angels of God forever and ever." (D&C 132:16-17)
Neither Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, nor Moroni will ever be one of these kinds of angels, because they will have been married by the new and everlasting covenant and therefore will be exalted.
This subject brings up another question. We have been taught that everyone living on this earth(including Moroni) will not be exalted until the Celestial kingdom exists, which won't happen until this earth is changed into that kingdom after the resurrection.
The question we might ask is why are Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob described as already exalted Gods sitting in their thrones?
The D&C 132 scriptures could just be an indication that these prophets' calling and election has been made sure. Later in Section 132 God tells Joseph the following:
"For I am the Lord thy God, and will be with thee even unto the end of the world, and through all eternity; for verily I seal upon you your exaltation, and prepare a throne for you in the kingdom of my Father, with Abraham your father." (verse 49)
God declares here that Joseph's calling and election is sure and after he dies will enjoy the same status as father Abraham. Having this "sealed" on Joseph means that, like Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, it is as good as done.
The D&C 132 scriptures could also be an example of a biblical figure of speech called "prophetic perfect". Prophetic perfect is used when a prophecy that is certain to happen in the future, is talked about as if it has already happened. Another example of this figure of speech is found in the prophetic scriptures of Isaiah where he declares, “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given… ” (Isaiah 9:6), making it sound as if Jesus was already born, 700 years before it actually happened. It simply means that because it was prophesied by a prophet of God it is a sure thing and therefore is spoken of in present or past tense language. The same can be said regarding the scriptures describing the certain future exalted status of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
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