No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

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SilentDawning
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No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by SilentDawning » 04 Apr 2017, 07:05

I have a question -- do you believe the only way to have eternal family is through ordinances and "enduring to the end"? I have a feeling that God won't do that to us eventually. First, I think it's pretty impractical. I know he's all powerful, but put a bunch of single people together in the same place for eternity, how could people NOT form social bonds, and want committed, romantic relationships? And if our bodies are like they are now , but perfect, hormones will rage.
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LookingHard
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by LookingHard » 04 Apr 2017, 07:21

I would agree with you. In my mind once my God had open arms to hug me he didn't have a way to hold a clipboard and a big red pen to checkoff items.

I also feel that the "eternal sealing" can make people feel good, but I think many people feel that God will allow them to be with their loved ones after this life if they live good lives. What loving God wouldn't want that?

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SilentDawning
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by SilentDawning » 04 Apr 2017, 07:48

LookingHard wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 07:21
I would agree with you. In my mind once my God had open arms to hug me he didn't have a way to hold a clipboard and a big red pen to checkoff items.

I also feel that the "eternal sealing" can make people feel good, but I think many people feel that God will allow them to be with their loved ones after this life if they live good lives. What loving God wouldn't want that?
And think how hard it is to prevent it from happening naturally!
"It doesn't have to be about the Church (church) all the time!" -- SD

"Stage 5 is where you no longer believe the gospel as its literally or traditionally taught. Nonetheless, you find your own way to be active and at peace within it". -- SD

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. No price is too high to pay for the privilege of owning yourself."

My introduction: viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1576

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Always Thinking
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by Always Thinking » 04 Apr 2017, 07:48

I agree with LH, I can't imagine a loving God keeping families apart because they don't want a temple sealing or they have become unworthy to go in the temple. I think like LH said, as long as we live good lives and try our best, God knows our hearts. The plan of 'eternal families' purpose is to create a comfort that we'll all be together in the eternities. However, this isn't the case if we aren't all perfectly righteous? That doesn't create much comfort since no one has control over their family members' righteousness. Also, here's a scenario, let's say a family who isn't lds were all the same amount of righteous and all entered the terrestrial kingdom. Doesn't that mean they'll still be together forever? They'd all be on the same heavenly level so technically there wouldn't be a need for a sealing if everyone in the family is the same level of righteousness. Idk why God would keep a family who's on the same level away from each other. That'd be messed up. Idk how heaven works, but I'm using the lds's version of it to theorize a bit. I know that I personally feel like God completely understands why I'm struggling with the church right now. I think He knows I'm trying my best and I don't think a loving God would keep me from my family if I wasn't temple worthy when I died. Just going off of the idea of God as a parental figure, I wouldn't keep my son from seeing his kids in the eternities if he didn't do a specific temple ordinance. Or let's say he went through a similar thing to what I did, getting a prayer answer wrong and losing my trust in prayer answers. I would completely understand why he lost trust in things. I can't imagine myself being like 'sorry, you were supposed to blindly believe even if things were incorrect so now you can't be with your family.' Doesn't work for me
ETA: I would also be understanding if my son had some of the reasons you all have for struggling with the church. Most people I've talked to have reasonable reasons for struggling with the church and I think God understands
Last edited by Always Thinking on 04 Apr 2017, 07:48, edited 1 time in total.

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Heber13
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by Heber13 » 04 Apr 2017, 07:57

I am currently sealed to my ex wife. Our situation is messy, and our kids deal with it.

I have an eternal love for my wife, who is sealed to her ex-husband.

My wife can't have her sealing ordinance canceled without a lengthy process with the 1st presidency, and I likely wouldn't get mine canceled to my ex unless she is remarrying someone.

Because none of that makes a lot of sense to me, and I can't believe we are "stuck" to who we were sealed to at the temple before we were 22 years old, the flip side is I have a hard time believing the opposite...that no family can be eternal without ordinances either.

I think the ordinances are there to help us work and commit as a family to becoming an eternal family. But it is all a part of a process. Ordinances are for our faith in the promises. They help with commitment. And so they are NOT useless.

I don't think they become rules or guarantees of anything. Life gets too messy. My situation will get worked out with my faith and through my actions and choices and who I become as I approach the judgement seat of God.
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LookingHard
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by LookingHard » 04 Apr 2017, 08:38

And when we are just past the teens, it sure seemed like a really great thing to do.

And I have to say when the complexities like Heber's case are brought up and members often say, "Oh God will sort it all out in the end" I vacillate between wanting to say
- Exactly! God will let families be together even if they were not sealed here.
and
- Saying that just weakens the doctrine of sealing to be rather insignificant. "You MUST be sealed, unless it is messy then you don't HAVE to be sealed"

The latter always reminds me of the saying, "Just shoot 'em all and let God sort 'em out." Which is often said in jest, but probably reflects one of the worst aspects of religion - the ability to kill others in the name of MY faith/God. I think I heard about an athiest saying, "God does not kill people, people that think God is telling them to kill people are the ones that kill people."

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nibbler
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by nibbler » 04 Apr 2017, 08:38

I see ordinances as things that help people gain confidence. People worry about whether or not god is listening so an ordinance is created which gives us a little assurance that god listened and approved.

In the case of eternal marriage, the bible verse "For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven." sows a seed of doubt. People worry about not being along side their partner that has been with them through thick and thin and we get an eternal marriage ordinance to help put that worry to rest so we can get on with our lives.

I think there's been a shift lately, now I believe more and more religious people outside the church are starting to view eternal families as the default. There's no ordinance hurdle to having an eternal family (other than perhaps the civil marriage) and that's just the way it is.

OTOH I believe endurance is necessary. Relationships that aren't actively maintained can wither. DW and I are eternal because we grow together. If we didn't "endure" each other the relationship would likely wane. If we grew apart then wouldn't that be the opposite of endure, and if we grew apart why would we still want that relationship to be eternal?

- - -

What would be the alternative to eternal families in heaven? When two married people attempt to get close to one another would god appear between them, extend arms, and put a hand on each person's forehead to prevent them from reuniting? Does god keep people locked up in a room so they can't interact with others? Would people be placed in different dimensions so they couldn't interact with other people?

To answer the question, "Do we get to be together?" I'd have to spend a little time answering the question, "What's going to keep us apart?"

- - -

Maybe I'm unique but here's another exercise I go through when contemplating the eternal nature of families. As an emancipated adult are you in a hurry to move back in to live with your parents (assuming your parents do not have needs)?

For me the answer is an emphatic "NO" so why am I concerned so much over families being eternal? "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh."

I get that as parents of young children it's sweet to think of them as being "yours" for forever and ever but I project that same logic I apply to my parents onto my children. They aren't going to want to keep up that desire to be with me for forever, they're going to want to strike out and become their own person. So is the concept of eternal families really about families or about worrying whether a relationship that we currently enjoy (be it side-by-side spouse, golf buddy, or "oh, so that's why I moved out" kid that visits on the holidays) will dissolve in the afterlife?
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Ann
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by Ann » 04 Apr 2017, 08:50

SilentDawning wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 07:05
I have a question -- do you believe the only way to have eternal family is through ordinances and "enduring to the end"?
No. I think my nuclear family is just as together on the other side as my neighbor's. They don't need another sealing; their love is it. It endured.

I assume that whatever constitutes "me" at that point will be further down the road of perfect love. And as an example, my enormous love and respect for my mother will not be diminished if I learn to Iove her abusive, alcoholic father. To me, that's sealing - creating a place holder or space in our hearts for future love.

It seems to me that the forever family/sealing idea - which I assume was originally mostly to comfort surviving family members - has gotten horribly knotted up on itself, and the church will need to reframe it pretty soon.
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Minyan Man
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by Minyan Man » 04 Apr 2017, 09:14

SilentDawning wrote:
04 Apr 2017, 07:05
-- do you believe the only way to have eternal family is through ordinances and "enduring to the end"?
I try not to complicate the teaching & doctrines of the church. We really don't know for certain what lies in eternity. There are many possibilities.
I believe there are going to be many surprises for everyone. I do like the idea that everyone is connected over time.

How the work is physically done, to seal generations of families on this side of the veil seems to be a monumental task.

Then there is the question of "enduring to the end". I don't know where to begin with this part of your question.

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DarkJedi
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Re: No Eternal Family without Ordinances and Endurance?

Post by DarkJedi » 04 Apr 2017, 09:40

I don't think the ordinances themselves are anything more than symbolic and mostly for our benefit. I was baptized to symbolically demonstrate that I wish to follow Christ. I was sealed in the temple to symbolically represent that I hoped to be with my wife and (future) children forever. I honestly think we're actually OK without them. I can follow Christ without being baptized (and over and over again he asked us people to believe in or follow him). I know many family members and friends who believe their marriages and relationships will carry on after this life and none of them are LDS. Have you ever heard a Christian say they thought anything other than they would be met by their loved ones when they die? How many obituaries (and I suppose I have to be specific to outside the Corridor here) have you read that say something like "Fred went to join his loving wife Ethel in Jesus's arms?" Part of my faith crisis dealt with the loving Heavenly Father thing. I hope God is loving enough to allow us to be with each other should we desire for eternity. What else is he going to do with us, put us on little separate islands?

Endurance is also something I have contemplated a bit. I get it, it's part of basic theology (see Ray's signature line). But what does "endure" really mean? I have endured some pretty awful Sunday School lessons - to the end (I have also left some). So what about those who don't endure to the end? Isn't that what mercy, grace, and the atonement are for? Or are we so caught up in using fear as a weapon that we forget that?

And while I'm at it, I'm not sure everybody believes the stuff about ordinances and enduring anyway - possibly even some top leaders. However, at this point there's no way to save face and back of those things. We can't have taught how necessary temple sealing is and we can't have allowed people to spend thousands of hours researching and in the temple doing proxy work for others only to turn around and say, "Well, that stuff wasn't all really necessary, you see, there's a spiritual component to all of this."

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