Celestial Marriage- In A Very Confused World About Marriage, Their Is Hope-
Russell M. Nelson - [The] proclamation on the family helps us realize that celestial marriage brings greater possibilities for happiness than does any other relationship. https://www.lds.org/general-conferenc...
The Magnitude of the Sealing Ordinances
Any of you would go around the world for the sealing ordinance if you knew its importance, if you realized how great it is. No distance, no shortage of funds, no situation would ever keep you from being married in the holy temple of the Lord.
Some aspects inherent in the sealing power of the priesthood are more perceptible and obvious than others. One dramatic and visible aspect is control over the elements: the sealing and unsealing of the heavens and the invocation and revocation of famine (see 1 Kings 17:1; 18:41–45; Helaman 10:7; 11:5). Thus, the sealing power gives its possessor power over all things on earth and the right and ability to have his actions recognized and ratified in heaven by the Father. (Smith,Doctrines of Salvation, 2:17.) It is stunning to realize that the sealing together of husbands, wives, and children is done by the same power that seals shut the heavens or changes the elements of the earth.
Once sealed, husbands, wives, and children are changed — they belong to each other. In a way we cannot explain scientifically or even understand completely, the sealing power welds together a husband, wife, and children for eternity. The sealing power is a real power in the universe. It affects the physical elements; it changes them, whether it be the heavens, the weather, the waters and seas, or the binding together of families. The sealing power, which is put in force by the Holy Ghost (D&C 132:7), is like the other powers that are under the control of the third member of the Godhead. Elder James E. Talmage explained:
In the execution of these great purposes, the Holy Ghost directs and controls the varied forces of nature, of which indeed a few, and these perhaps of minor order wonderful as even the least of them appears to man, have thus far been investigated by mortals. Gravitation, sound, heat, light, and the still more mysterious and seemingly supernatural power of electricity, are but the common servants of the Holy Ghost in His operations. No earnest thinker, no sincere investigator supposes that he has yet learned of all the forces existing in and operating upon matter; indeed, the observed phenomena of nature, yet wholly inexplicable to him, far outnumber those for which he has devised even a partial explanation. There are powers and forces at the command of God, compared with which electricity is as the pack-horse to the locomotive, the foot messenger to the telegraph, the raft of logs to the ocean steamer. With all his scientific knowledge man knows but little respecting the enginery of creation; and yet the few forces known to him have brought about miracles and wonders, which but for their actual realization would be beyond belief. These mighty agencies, and the mightier ones still to man unknown, and many, perhaps, to the present condition of the human mind unknowable, do not constitute the Holy Ghost, but are the agencies ordained to serve His purposes (Talmage, Articles of Faith, 145-46).
Brigham Young declared that:
Elder Bruce R. McConkie added this significant insight: “Since these sealing blessings are conferred by the laying on of hands of those who hold the keys of this power, it follows that John’s description of placing a seal in the forehead is not just apocalyptic imagery but a literal description of what takes place. As with other sacred things, however, the devil has a substitute seal to place; he puts a mark in the ‘foreheads’ of his followers also (Rev. 13:16–1.”Four destroying angels [are] holding power over the four quarters of the earth until the servants of God are sealed in their foreheads, which signifies sealing the blessing upon their heads, meaning the everlasting covenant, thereby making their calling and election sure. When a seal is put upon the father and mother, it secures their posterity so that they cannot be lost, but will be saved by virtue of the covenant of their father and mother.
The sealing of men and women (couples) to eternal life is predicated upon continued faithfulness in mortality over time, after their temple marriage, and is not automatic or inherent in the marriage ceremony when a couple is first married in the temple, as temple instruction makes clear. Said President Joseph Fielding Smith, “Blessings pronounced upon couples in connection with celestial marriage are conditioned upon the subsequent faithfulness of the participating parties” (Smith, Doctrines of Salvations, 2:46). In fact, exaltation comes as a result of proven loyalty to the Lord and his kingdom “at all hazards” (Smith, Teachings, 150). The Prophet Joseph Smith not only described the kind of complete devotion to righteousness that is required to receive this ultimate blessing but showed us the way (Smith, Teachings, 149-51). In 1843, after years of serving the Lord at all hazards, Joseph heard the Lord say: “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” (D&C 132:49).
…How much we owe to the sealing power of the priesthood. All who receive the associated ordinances and live worthy of their temple covenants will enjoy the ultimate blessings of the sealing power. They will become exalted beings, heirs of God, and participants with the Gods in eternal family relationships. I am sobered and humbled to think (and it is no exaggeration to say) that not only am I sealed to kings and queens, gods and goddesses, but I was born to be a king, to become royalty in the eternities — and so were you. All those who gain exaltation in the celestial kingdom “receive the fullness of the power, might, and dominion of that kingdom. They overcome all things. They are crowned as priests and kings [priestesses and queens] and become like [God]” (Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 2:24). That is the essence of everything we learn in the Lord’s temples.
President Lorenzo Snow gives us a picture of the importance of celestial marriage:
Brigham Young explained further:When two Latter-day Saints are united together in marriage, promises are made to them concerning their offspring that reach from eternity to eternity. They are promised that they shall have the power and the right to govern and control and administer salvation and exaltation and glory to their offspring worlds without end. And what offspring they do not have here, undoubtedly there will be opportunities to have them hereafter. What else could man wish? A man and a woman in the other life, having celestial bodies, free from sickness and disease, glorified and beautified beyond description, standing in the midst of their posterity, governing and controlling them, administering life, exaltation and glory worlds without end!
I think it has been taught by some that as we lay our bodies down, they will so rise again in the resurrection with all the impediments and imperfections that they had here; and that if a wife does not love her husband in this state she cannot love him in the next. This is not so.Those who attain to the blessing of the first or celestial resurrection will be pure and holy, and perfect in body. Every man and woman that reaches to this unspeakable attainment will be as beautiful as the angels that surround the throne of God. If you can, by faithfulness in this life, obtain the right to come up in the morning of the resurrection, you need entertain no fears that the wife will be dissatisfied with her husband, or the husband with the wife; for those of the first resurrection will be free from sin and from the consequences and power of sin. This body “is sown in corruption, it is raised in incorruption; it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body.” “And, as we have borne the image of the earthly, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.”
Brigham Young was once approached by two women who were seeking a divorce, and he gave the following counsel.
Elder James E. Talmage wrote:If that dissatisfied wife would behold the transcendent beauty of person, the Godlike qualities of the resurrected husband she now despises, her love for him would be unbounded and unutterable. Instead of despising him, she would feel like worshipping him. He is so holy, so pure, so perfect, so filled with God in his resurrected body. There will be no dissatisfaction of this kind in the resurrection of the just. The faithful elders will have then proved themselves worthy of their wives, and are prepared then to be crowned gods, to be filled with all the attributes of the gods that dwell in eternity. Could the dissatisfied ones see a vision of the future glorified state of their husbands, love for them would immediately spring up within you, and no circumstance could prevail upon you to forsake them.
Now, some are going to say, “I don’t quite understand, because we are taught, aren’t we, that the spirit we leave this life with we will have in the next life, and everything we take there by the way of failure and sin is going to be perpetuated. So what you’re saying sounds like it’s sort of a magical cure-all.”
. . .When the frailties and imperfections of mortality are left behind, in the glorified state of the blessed hereafter, husband and wife will administer in their respective stations, seeing and understanding alike” — oh, hasten the day! — “and co-operating to the full in the government of their family kingdom. Then shall woman be recompensed in rich measure for all the injustice that womanhood has endured in mortality. Then shall woman reign by Divine right, a queen in the resplendent realm of her glorified state, even as exalted man shall stand, priest and king unto the Most High God.” And then he adds in full confirmation of what Brother Brigham said: “Mortal eye cannot see nor mind comprehend the beauty, glory, and majesty of a righteous woman made perfect in the celestial kingdom of God.” Now, it also works the other way around, that if the husband could only see his wife in her glorified condition, he would be so moved he would feel to worship. You might pause and say, “Wait, wait, wait. We are talking idolatry. We are not supposed to worship each other.” In the ultimate scheme of things we will feel to do so when the person is worthy of it.
This quotation does not say that it is all automatic. According to Elder Bruce R. McConkie there is a fallacy in the Church, and that is that in order for us to be worthy of a celestial resurrection we must be perfect before we leave this life. It is false. While each of us is expected to make all the progress possible in mortality, we cannot be fully perfected in this world. There will be more to be done in the spirit world, but in the glorious celestial resurrection much improvement will take place. And that vision — that really it is going to happen and if we live consistently it will happen — can make a lot of difference during the hours of discouragement and despair. There are problems in some marriages and in some families that will not all be resolved here, and it is pointless to hope that they will. But it is not pointless to have long-range faith that as you continue doing your all, they will be resolved, and that’s the promise that these prophets have given us.
We don’t know how extensive and detailed the organization of the family was in the premortal life, but we were family there. We were a family. And according to George Q. Cannon (see Utah Genealogical and Historical Magazine, 21:124) and Orson F. Whitney (see Improvement Era 13:100-1), who gave this a lot of thought, it may well be that some of the kinships we feel for each other here are but the trailing of the impressions and expressions of those former associations.
I once had the opportunity to ask a related question to Elder Joseph Fielding Smith. I was at the Church offices doing some research when I ran into his wife. Since she was going into his office, which was then in the Historical Department, she took me with her. “Let’s go see Daddy,” she said. I knew who Daddy was. As the great Church scripturalist, he overawed me. He looked up with a smile and said, “Brother Madsen, you can have one question.” So I asked, “Brother Smith, do you think marriages are made in heaven?” Well, I had him over a barrel — his wife was standing right there. And he hesitated, so she kind of punched him. “Daddy, Daddy, don’t you think our marriage was made in heaven?” Now, he had to be honest. So he said, “Well, it’s in heaven now.”
Many of us have heard the statement made — and ascribed to either Joseph Smith or Brigham Young — to the effect that if a person could see the glory of the telestial kingdom he would commit suicide to get there. If only we could get the fundamental doctrines across to Church members as rapidly as we get across rumors, everyone would be saved. Am I saying that’s a rumor? Well, I am saying this, that over a period of many years I have combed everything Joseph Smith said and wrote, and I can’t find it. Hugh Nibley has done the same with Brigham Young’s words, and he can’t find it. It is hard to prove a negative, of course. What I can say is that we have found a statement from Joseph via Wilford Woodruff that says something else that is close, and I suspect it is the origin of the alleged statement (see Diary of Charles C. Walker, August 1837, in Church Historical Department). Elder Woodruff said the Prophet taught this, roughly: that if we could see what is beyond the veil we couldn’t stand to stay here in mortality for five minutes. And I suggest from the context that he was not talking about the telestial kingdom. He was talking about what it was like to be in the presence of God and the family.
The values of a temple marriage are high when we consider the future existence of man. The first value is a continuation of the married state in that future existence and the possibility of having children there. Concerning this the Prophet Joseph Smith said:
A second blessing is the promise of a resurrection, man and wife together, in the resurrection of the just. From the revelations we read:Except a man and his wife enter into an everlasting covenant and be married for eternity, while in this probation, by the power and authority of the Holy Priesthood, they will cease to increase when they die; that is, they will not have any children after the resurrection. But those who are married by the power and authority of the Priesthood in this life, and continue without committing the sin against the Holy Ghost, will continue to increase and have children in the celestial glory. The unpardonable sin is to shed innocent blood, or be accessory thereto. All other sins will be visited with judgment in the flesh, and the spirit being delivered to the buffetings of Satan until the day of the Lord Jesus. . . . In the celestial glory there are three heavens or degrees; And in order to obtain the highest, a man must enter into this order of priesthood [meaning the new and everlasting covenant of marriage]; And if he does not, he cannot obtain it. He may enter into the other, but that is the end of his kingdom; he cannot have an increase (HC5:391-392).
Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; therefore they shall be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them. Then shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them. (D&C 132:19-20)And again, verily I say unto you, if a man marry a wife by my word, which is my law, and by the new and everlasting covenant, and it is sealed unto them by the Holy Spirit of promise, by him who is anointed, unto whom I have appointed this power, and the keys of this priesthood; and it shall be said unto them — Ye shall come forth in the first resurrection; and if it be after the first resurrection, in the next resurrection; and shall inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, all heights and depths — then shall it be written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, that he shall commit no murder whereby to shed innocent blood, and if ye abide in my covenant, and commit no murder whereby to shed innocent blood, it shall be done unto them in all things whatsoever my servant hath put upon them, in time, and through all eternity, and shall be of full force when they are out of the world; and they shall pass by the angels, and the gods, which are set there, to their exaltation and glory in all things, as hath been sealed upon their heads, which glory shall be a fulness and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.
One could hardly ask a greater promise of God for those who obey His law of marriage. Although we cannot in this life realize in full the significance of these possible blessings, we can grasp enough to cause us to have an earnest desire so to live that we may merit them.
The consciousness of our human weaknesses and frailties and the ease with which we give way to temptation causes all to wonder if the covenant would not be broken despite our willingness to accept it and an honest desire to live its requirements. Concerning subsequent sins of those married in the temple, the Lord has said:
The above passage is significant. No man or woman, though married in the temple, may escape punishment for his or her sins, or for violations of their sacred covenants. For the breaking of God’s laws they will suffer in mortality, and will be delivered to the “buffetings of Satan” in the spirit world. Nevertheless, after one or both of them, as the case may be, have paid the penalty for their sins, if the marriage covenant has not been renounced by them or broken by the shedding of innocent blood they will be resurrected together into the same glory, as God has promised.Verily, verily, I say unto you, if a man marry a wife according to my word, and they are sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise, according to mine appointment, and he or she shall commit any sin or transgression of the new and everlasting covenant whatever, and all manner of blasphemies, and if they commit no murder, wherein they shed innocent blood — yet they shall come forth in the first resurrection, and enter into their exaltation, but they shall be destroyed in the flesh, and shall be delivered unto the buffetings of Satan unto the day of redemption, saith the Lord God (D&C132:26).
. . .Not all the marriages that are dissolving around us in such depressing numbers fall apart because of trivialities. Reasons for getting divorced are, after all, almost as individual as the reasons for staying married. In these days of redefinition of a woman’s role, some among us come to grief because of the disparities between the Latter-day Saint view of the interlocking relationship between men and women and the present fashion outside the Church in which women are applauded for putting their own fulfillment ahead of everything else. To put your own ambition on the back burner, even temporarily, is castigated as hollow martyrdom. A woman should be free to be whatever she can be, the argument goes, and if her husband can’t or won’t accept that, that’s tough. When you’re having problems figuring out how to make room for what you want to be in your marriage, the voices urging you to keep your eyes fixed on your own goals can be tempting sirens. The plain fact is that unselfishness isn’t easy. Deciding to wait to do your own thing and help your husband do his instead isn’t a once-and-for-all decision. It has to be made day after day, and when there are a lot of people around you who clearly think you’re nuts, that doesn’t make it any easier. We were never promised a world in which all the frustrations would be conveniently removed as soon as we have embarked on an unselfish course. (It often feels as if they get even worse!) It is hardly surprising that some sisters figure it’s not worth it and bail out to try their own wings. Some marriages creak with the strain and survive, and some marriages don’t.
. . . Marriage isn’t easy, and if it is to play its part in preparing us to move along to a life in which even more will be expected of us, I don’t see how it ever could be easy. Getting along with each other and simultaneously progressing in the same direction is the most complicated job any of us will undertake. Compared to that, raising children is a part-time job. They grow up and go out and take responsibility for themselves; husbands and wives have to go on getting along as working partners for the rest of our lives here and hereafter. Marriage takes all the possibilities and problems of all the rest of human relationships and compresses them into a nutshell. You respect and obey your parents, and there is an element of that in your relationship with your husband. You tend and nurture your children, and when you or your husband are ill or feeling defeated, you tend and nurture each other. You have the pleasures of companionable equality with your friends, and you have exactly the same relationship in your marriage.
. . .Among all the other things marriage gives us is the unavoidable opportunity for service. It is only in service that we discover who our truest selves are, that we gain our greatest dignity, whether the service is something as visible and gratifying as putting together a flawless company dinner for his important guests, or something as humble and ordinary as making sure that his socks match and there’s a clean shirt available, morning after morning and year after year. Sometimes we serve the men we love; sometimes — and we mustn’t let even the loudest cynics encourage us to forget it — the men we love serve us.
Marriage is too complicated to fit into any simplified formulation. It doesn’t always work, but we have been given the promise that it can, that we can — that men and women, different as they are, are meant to give themselves wholly to each other to build a relationship of such depth and profundity that it can’t develop any other way. Marriage is meant to be a relationship that transcends the whole issue of equality, a relationship in which one and one add up to something greater than the sum of the parts. It might not always be easy, but there’s no other way to get to where we want to go. And if we get it right, the potential is breathtaking.
 Spencer W. Kimball, Temples and Eternal Marriage, Ensign, February, 1995.
 Spencer W. Kimball, First Presidency Message, “The Importance of Celestial Marriage”, Ensign, October, 1979.
 Andrew Skinner, Temple Worship, Ch. 8, “The Sealing Ordinances”.
 Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 9:269, April 6, 1862.
 Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, 683
 Andrew Skinner, Temple Worship, Ch. 8, “The Sealing Ordinances”.
 Andrew Skinner, Temple Worship, Ch. 11, “Adam and Eve Received the Sealing Ordinances”.
 Lorenzo Snow, The Deseret Weekly, 3 Apr. 1897, p. 481.
 Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses, 10:24.
 Church Historical Department document Ms/d/1234 box 49/FD8.
 In Young Woman’s Journal, October 1914, pp. 602-3.
 Truman G. Madsen, The Radiant Life , p. 88-90.
 William E. Berrett, Restored Church, “Marriage and the Family”.
 Various authors, Beppie Harrison, LDS Women’s Treasury: Insights and Inspiration for Today’s Woman, pp. 195-206.