Posted in Agency, The Fall

The Fall and Atonement Provide Agency For Man

Adam and Eve were innocent before the Fall, in which they had choice, but not agency. For agency is the ability to do good, under the knowledge of good and evil. They used their choice to chose to be given agency, by surcombing to the Fall. But there had to be an opposition to the Fall to allow this to take place, and for mankind to be given the opportunity to be reconciled with the Father. Only Jesus could do this. He is the perpetuation of the plan of God for man. It was God’s holy will to offer up His Son, and to swallow up sin, via the bitter cup (literally speaking). But he shank not, and drank the utter dregs, finishing His preparations for man, as was His father’s will.

Before this time in Adam and Eve’s innocents, there could be no good, for there was no evil. See 2 Nephi 2:11 below.

11 It must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility. (2 Nephi 2:11)

Adam and Eve chose to trust in the feelings they had, and in their redeemer, without fully knowing the import of their decision’s outcome. It was a well thought out, as well as well felt out decision, relying on the feelings of their hearts and spirits, which helped them to ultimately make their choice.

God knew that they would eventually come to the point where they would realize that they needed more to help them grow, in which they would choose to and need the Lord’s saving atonement. This is why a redeemer was chosen and prepared from before the foundations of the earth.

The Fall, or Adam’s transgression, is a spiritual death because Adam and Eve were separated from the presence of God and given agency to act for themselves and not to be acted upon. See 2 Nephi 2:26

They were also given the great power of procreation, so that they could keep the commandment to multiply, and replenish the earth and have joy in their posterity. See Genisis 1:28

In this new state, God gave them the bodily change to have children. This is so because God gave them the commandment to multiply, and He always provides a way to obey Him.

If it were possible for them to have had children before the Fall, God would have had no purpose in the Earth for our mortal test period of probation.

We needed death in both the separation from God spiritually, as well as our death physically, for us to progress onward to become like Him. This is why resurrection is so important. We need to be tried, reproved and repent, in order grow up to become like Him, even as a child can grow up to be like their parents.

God had to create Adam and Eve in innocence, and give them the commandments He did, for God is a God of righteousness, and cannot create a state of sin or Fall.

It is an eternal principle that to everything good there is a little bad, and to everything bad there is a little good. This is why out of all the trees in the garden of Eden (which is our Earth’s real mortal name), there was only one poisened tree, which was the fig tree (which has changed over the years now from being what it once was in the beginning).

  • The principle of perfection

Because it is not within Heavenly Father’s nature to do or introduce error, He had to say to them, Do not eat, or you shall surely die, all of which is true. Yet, He also wanted us to become like Him. In doing so we would have to walk where He has walked, do as He has done, and follow the course He has gone.

See Teachings of the Presidents of the Church- Joseph Smith, pg 41 below.

God Himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret. If the veil were rent today, and the great God who holds this world in its orbit, and who upholds all worlds and all things by His power, was to make Himself visible,—I say, if you were to see Him today, you would see Him like a man in form—like yourselves in all the person, image, and very form as a man. (Teachings of the Presidents of the Church – Joseph Smith, pg 41)

Now, speaking of God’s plan, the adversary is very much a part of it. We need opposition to permit, or rather give us permission to grow. This need is stated in the afore mentioned scripture in 2 Nephi 2:11, that there must be an opposition in all things.

Because the Lord took on all sins, and the source from which they spring, He also takes the ones from which they spring. Yes, somewhere, sometime, in the great eons of the eternal lives and onward, the ultimate prodigal son will, having burned and purged clean in the lake of fire and brimstone of outter darkness, come to himself, and begin his long trek home. For God is a perfect God with perfect love, and a perfect plan, and He will not lose any of His children.

So, is there hope for the rest of us? Definitely!

Shane

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Posted in Atonement, The Fall

Adam and Eve and Us: Part Two

Note: A lesson as is geared towards younger children.

Adam & Eve are our first parents. They were created by God in a state similar to how children like you are, except that they looked like grown up adults.

They lived in a beautiful garden called after the name of our mother earth: Eden.

They were very pure and also very smart like adults can be, but they didn’t understand that there was such a thing as bad. They were innocent and good.

God told them about a tree called The Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, and said that they shall not eat of it, and that in the day they do, they shall surely die.

God wanted to introduce them to a way in which they could learn and become like Him. This could only happen if they were to know what bad was, and experience it as an opposite to their good.

Eve thought and thought, and was even tempted by an unwise evil spirit, who had fallen out of the presence of Heavenly Father for rebelling against Him. He was sent to earth to tempt us here to do wrong, but Adam and Eve could do no wrong, until it was introduced to them, and they were to disobey their Father.

Adam never would have eaten the fruit, which fruit was a called a fig, except that God had commanded Adam and Eve to stay together, and God had told them that they would be cast out, if they had eaten of the fruit. Eve was very thoughtful, and realized that they would need something to change for them, if they were to become like their Heavenly Father. She partook of the fruit, and Adam then partook, so that he could stay with His wife Eve, as Heavenly Father had commanded him to.

Their bodies soon changed after they partook of the fruit, which was not good for them, and they began to die. This was also disobeying their Heavenly Father, and was wrong.

Once Adam and Eve were knowingly introduced to this plan of Happiness, in which they would understand from their experiences the difference between good and bad, they had to work their best to always do what is good, for this is what will help us all to be happy. In this way, they could appreciate good, and understand it better.

Let’s consider a song that will help us understand that we are here from God, to also learn from our experiences, as Adam and Eve did. I Am a Child of God (Page 301, LDS Hymnal)

Adam and Eve were introduced to this fruit by a bad spirit whose name is Lucifer.

Soon after Eve and Adam partook of the fruit, their bodies started to fall unto death through this unhealthy fruit, and their spirits also for disobeying their Heavenly Father, who they knew and loved. The atonement literally is what keeps them alive, both spiritually and physically.

With this change, their spirits now had to fight to do good things, for their bodies now wanted and craved things that were not right or healthy.

This dying of their bodies, and disobeying of our Father is what is called The Fall, which happened during the earth’s Fall season of existence, and caused them to no longer have their spirits and bodies in unison, meaning that before the fall, what their spirits perceived and thought, is what their bodies experienced also.

From that time forth, their bodies would want to do bad. Adam and Eve would see and comprehend things with their body’s natural senses, thoughts and feelings, and would now have to fight for their spirits to be the ones in control.

This condition is what is known as having a veil placed over our spirits, so that we don’t remember our pre-earth life with God, His presence, or what His love feels like. Our bodies are our veil.

As children, we can have a better understanding and love for God, but as we grow older, we need to rekindle that love and affection for God, by learning of His great love, merciful plan to live with Him again, and return to having our spiritual hearts and minds as our understandings in life, similar to as Adam and Eve did before their bodies fell, except that we now have the opportunity to understand opposition, just as Adam and Eve, once they had partaken of the fruit.

We can choose to become better and better like God every day, and understand that good is different than bad, and we can choose the good because we love God and happiness.

It is because of the atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ, that we can do this good. This is what is called agency, or, the ability to do good, even when we are fallen.

The light of Christ, which is a fruit of the atonement, is in all of us, and is what keeps us all alive, so that we can learn to repent and do good.

We are out of the presence of God, and will all physically die, as was said by Heavenly Father, but Jesus Christ will make us all live again, through His own resurrection. 

Because of the atonement, we can be made whole spiritually and physically, this time having the ability to progress like unto our Father in Heaven, because of our earthly experiences.

As we always repent and follow our Savior Jesus Christ and keep His commandments, we can be happy and have joy, and ultimately become like our Savior and our Father in Heaven, who is our true Father. This will happen long after we have been resurrected and live with Them, for they will personally teach us how to be like Them.

Jesus is the Christ. He is the Great Mediator and Head of The Plan of Salvation for the children of our beloved Father in Heaven who cherishes us. We are here because of Him. We will return because of Him. We will one day be like Him because of Him. What blessing our redeemer is to all. May we honor Him and love Him by keeping His commandments. I know we can all do this, and I bare my testimony that we will all do this, and return in glory to be an eternal family with our Father in Heaven.

Truly Jesus Christ is not some back up plan, He is the plan. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Shane