Suggest a Site
General LDS Information
Basic LDS Beliefs
Music and Arts
LDS Online Stores
Priesthood, Humor, Miscel.
Now accepting banner ads!
TOM - When will the veil be taken from our minds? President Woodruff and President Snow both said that the conditions in the spirit world would be a thousand times more favorable for those there to accept the gospel than it is for people in mortality. Might the fact be that the veil will be removed at death be one of the reasons that will make conditions their so much more favorable? Or will the veil be taken from our minds at judgment, or at some other time?
JOEL - A couple of quotes that suggest when the veil is taken from our minds:
President George Q. Cannon said:
"You have heard of men who have been drowning or have fallen from a great height describe that in about a second or two every event of their lives passed before them like a panorama with the rapidity of lightning. This shows what power there is latent in the human mind, which, when quickened by the power of God, will make men and women recall not only that which pertains to this life, but our memories will stretch back to the life we had before we came here, with the associations we had with our Father and God and with those bright spirits that stand around His throne and with the righteous and holy ones." (Gospel Truth: Discourses and Writings of President George Q. Cannon, p. 60)
Elder Boyd K. Packer said:
Resurrection is our redemption from temporal death, from the grave. There is also a redemption from the spiritual death and an exaltation for those who are worthy to receive it. We shall receive celestial, terrestrial, or telestial bodies in the resurrection. Those who inherit the celestial glory shall inherit bodies like unto the Father, bodies which have a glory akin to the glory of the sun. Our memory of premortal life will be restored in perfect clarity. Those who have been endowed, sealed, and have kept their covenants will assemble with their families.
(Mine Errand from the Lord, by Boyd K. Packer)
So in other words our minds need to be quickened by the power of God to be able to remember the premortal life, and apparently that will not happen for everyone; only at the time of resurrection for those who are resurrected to exaltation. So we can't rely on that to make things easier for us in the spirit world.
We teach that the spirits in prison who never had the opportunity to hear and accept the gospel in this life will receive that chance there and be able to obtain exaltation (1 Pet. 3:18-20, 4:6, D&C 138:27-32).
One might ask however, how are those spirits in Spirit prison able to prove themselves worthy of exaltation if they are not subjected to the same temptations from Satan and his angels like we are in this life?
We know from the scriptures that the natural man is an enemy to God:
"For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord" (Mosiah 3:19)
Therefore we are all quite capable of committing sin or being sinful without the help of Satan and his angels.
We also learn the following:
"And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed.
Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world." (Alma 34: 33-34)
So even though when we die and realize that there is indeed a heaven and hell, that knowledge is not going to make it any easier for us to change who we are. We will still be subject to the natural man within us and will have to repent for our sins and change our nature to prepare us for eternal life.
Elder Melvin J. Ballard said,
"Do not let any of us imagine that we can go down to the grave not having overcome the corruptions of the flesh and then lose in the grave all our sins and evil tendencies. They will be with us. They will be with the spirit when separated from the body. So, men won't know any more when they are dead than when they are living, only they will have passed through the change called death. They will not understand the truths of the gospel only by the same process as they understand and comprehend them here. . . . When you die and go to the spirit world, you will labor for years, trying to convert individuals who will be taking their own course. Some of them will repent; some of them will listen. Another group will be rebellious, following their own will and notion, and that group will get smaller and smaller until every knee shall humbly bow and every tongue confess." (Sermons and Missionary Services of Melvin J. Ballard, 240, 245)
Elder Neal A. Maxwell made it clear that we continue to walk by faith in the postmortal spirit world:
"We do not now know precisely how God handles things in the spirit world so that life there is an extension of walking by faith. Death does not suddenly bestow upon the disbeliever full awareness of all reality, thereby obviating the need for any faith. Instead, what follows death is a continuum of the basic structure in mortality—until the Judgment Day, when every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus is the Christ (see Romans 14:11; Philippians 2:10; D&C 76:110). Until then, we 'walk by faith, not by sight' (2 Corinthians 5:7).
How will God ensure this condition in the spirit world? We do not know. Yet He has certainly so handled the second estate in relation to the first estate, hasn't He? The memories of the first estate are not accessible in the second estate. The spirit world will be so arranged that there will be no legitimate complaints later over the justice and mercy of God (see Mosiah 27:31: Alma 12:15).
The gospel, when preached in the spirit world, will bring the same responses as here: 'some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not' (Acts 28:24)."(Maxwell, That Ye May Believe, 94)
So we still have to overcome our sinful nature and repent of our sins either in this life or the next. Not sure about what President Woodruff and President Snow said about it being easier,because according to the above quotes it doesn't sound like it will be any easier there than it is here in this life.
Satan will probably still have the ability to reach us even in the Spirit world. Elder Harold B. Lee. said:
"Where is the spirit world? Is it away up in the heavens? That isn't what the scriptures and our brethren explain. They have told us the spirit world is right here round about us, and the only spirits who can live here are those who are assigned to fill their missions here on earth. This is the spirit world. And if our eyes could be opened we could see those who have departed from us—a father, mother, brother, a sister, a child." (Teachings of Harold B. Lee, 58; see also Discourses of Brigham Young, 376–77; Pratt, Key to the Science of Theology, 126)
And Brigham Young makes the connection between those in the spirit world and Satan and his evil spirits when he said,
"Those who have died without the Gospel are continually afflicted by those evil spirits, who say to them—'Do not go to hear that man Joseph Smith preach, or David Patten, or any of their associates, for they are deceivers.'" (Young, Journal of Discourses, 3:731)
Therefore, knowing that Satan and his spirits were cast down to this earth and that the spirit world is here on earth with us, we must conclude that Satan and his evil spirits must have access to both the physical world to tempt the living and the spirit world to tempt the dead. They function in their role as tempters to those trying to prove themselves worthy in both realms.God is fair and just and would not give an unfair advantage or disadvantage to anyone when it comes to their eternal life. On this Joseph Fielding McConkie said:
"If God is just, then all of his children must have an equal opportunity to accept or reject the gospel before the Day of Judgment. As Latter-day Saints, we know that those who did not have the opportunity to accept the gospel in this life will have it in the spirit world before they are called forth from the grave. These, Peter said, will then "be judged according to men in the flesh" (1 Pet. 4:6). This statement means that the standard of discipleship is the same in this world and in the next.
In principle it should be neither easier nor harder to exercise faith or to repent in the spirit world. Were that not the case, those in that estate could not be judged according to men in the flesh. For some it will be natural and easy to accept and live gospel truths, for that will have been the practice of a lifetime. For others it will be very difficult to do so, for eschewing the things of the Spirit will have been the practice of a lifetime. The difference is not in the gospel but in the hearts and souls of those to whom the message is being presented. We must allow, however, for circumstances in which people were prisoners to experiences in this life that prevented them from having a fair chance to embrace gospel principles here. When they are freed from those bitter chains, many of them will seek the blessings of the gospel." (Straightforward Answers to Tough Gospel Questions, Joseph Fielding McConkie)
I think if we were to obtain a memory of our premortal life before we have overcome sin and become saved it would give an unfair advantage to those who procrastinated their repentance until the next life.