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At church on Sunday the Relief Society teacher said something that struck me, something I think I knew already but I liked how or that she said it. She said, "Eternal is a way of being as much as a length of time, isn't it?"
Interestingly, the hour before I had just taught a lesson on eternal marriage. The last two weeks of study on that topic, along with her statement, gave me some more great insight on this seemingly simple subject.
In D&C 131 we read that in order to enter the highest degree in "the celestial glory" one must enter into the new and everlasting covenant of marriage. Why? Why is it so necessary for marriage to occur in order for that placement to occur?
Well, the obvious and most quoted answer to that question would be, "Without marriage you cannot procreate." Verse 4 of section 131 hints at this as well saying that if one does not enter into this covenant, 'he cannot have increase;" increase often being referred to as posterity.
But I have to say, as essential and true as that principle is, there has to be a more to it than just that. I mean, marriage here on earth is more about having children, right? And we know that whatever is bound on earth is bound in heaven (D&C 132:7).
In D&C 132:6 we read, "And as pertaining to the new and everlasting covenant, it was instituted for the fulness of my glory... (italics added)." What is the fulness of His glory?
Moses 1:39 tells us it is "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man."
How do we does the marriage covenant help in bringing about the fulness of God's glory?
Well, further in section 132 we read:
For strait is the gate, and narrow the way that leadeth unto the exaltation and continuation of lives, and few there be that find it, because ye receive me not in the world neither do ye know me. But if ye receive me in the world, then shall ye know me, and shall receive your exaltation; that wehre I am ye shall be also. This is eternal lives - to know the only wise and true God, and Jesus Christ, whom he hath sent (vv.22-24, emphasis added)."
ETERNAL: A away of being as much as a length of time.
I cannot imagine any other relationship more sacred than marriage and yet I cannot imagine any other relationship where character is tested more profusely!! In marriage we learn in no better way how to forgive, how to repent, how to respect and listen, how to compromise and serve. In essence, marriage is where we truly learn to LOVE as.
"But if ye receive me in the world, then shall ye know me, and shall receive your exaltation." We have the choice to make our marriages eternal NOW. It's not truth when we say, "I'll just muddle through and everything will come out all right in the end." What we bind on earth is what we will receive in heaven. If we are to know and receive our Savior we must know how He loves. We practice that kind of love in our marriages. Our marriages must be progressing to this kind of love and oneness in order to receive our exaltation.
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"Wherefore...pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hat bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. Amen."
- - Moroni 7:48 - -