• Roger Martin

First Born - the highest in us

The following was taken from -

https://emp.byui.edu/SATTERFIELDB/Papers/firstborn.html

Yes I added some verses to it and now some comments -


Note - this is high and deep doctrine - it's not for beginners in the Church or new members - this is for temple going members that have been in the church for some time and want to be exalted to their fullest potential - with the help of God and righteous works, faith and grace...


From BYU - CHURCH OF FIRST BORN


By - Bruce Satterfield

Department of Religious Education,

Brigham Young University - Idaho

PDF Version


Becoming part of the Church of the Firstborn should be the goal of every Latter-day Saint.

( The above statement is a great understatement - more then a goal or desire - it should be one of our greatest and highest desire in our hearts and minds - to say the least - why because with out this burning desire and a willingness to put your whole being on the alter - you may never get to where you need to go - in the highest degree of celestial glory - where the Gods had went before you... this is not an easy task or effort - it will require all you have and more at times - many times along this life and into the future life )!


( Remember this covenants begin in the Temples of the Church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints )!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLXYxmaHWQs&t=77s


( Now I believe many things in this video but not all! )


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vnkisux33ZU&t=2247s


{ From here on out all of my comments will be in ( ) - the exception is copied scriptures - }


Though the phrase "church of the Firstborn" is used in the scriptures (see Hebrews 12:23; D&C 76:54, 67, 71, 94, 102; 77:11; 78:21; 88:5; 93:22; 107:19), many in the Church are unfamiliar with its meaning. The following is an examination of the scriptures and the words of the brethren concerning the doctrine of the church of the Firstborn.

D&C 76: 54 They are they who are the church of the Firstborn.

66 These are they who are come unto Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly place, the holiest of all.


( Many if not all of these verses - talk about the highest blessing of God that will be given to man - they are not given out to any one and they must be given out - to only those that have been cleansed by the Blood and Grace of God - as witnesses by the Holy Ghost - yes the third member of the God head - a God - who knows all things about us - This is a must! Not an option - so there is no - deception in this understanding and relationship - because of false churches - who are apostates and who are involved in polygamy - with out divine authority - they can not get these blessing without the approval of God! )


67 These are they who have come to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of Enoch, and of the Firstborn.

68 These are they whose names are written in heaven, where God and Christ are the judge of all.

71 And again, we saw the terrestrial world, and behold and lo, these are they who are of the terrestrial, whose glory differs from that of the church of the Firstborn who have received the fulness of the Father, even as that of the moon differs from the sun in the firmament.

( This fullness is nothing less then the full power of Godliness - in short to became as GOD is not - that is what we are talking about here - as sons and daughters of Heavenly Parents - we have a right and responsibility to become as they are a god - this does not make them any less of a God - and it does not make us any more Godless or Perfect in time to become what they are - to wrap you heart and mind around this is powerful and scary because - it makes us more responsible for what we do with our lives and times, talents and blessings God had given us - and more responsible to obey and live closer to our heavenly parents and God head! All of them and their angels! )


92 And thus we saw the glory of the celestial, which excels in all things—where God, even the Father, reigns upon his throne forever and ever;

93 Before whose throne all things bow in humble reverence, and give him glory forever and ever.

94 They who dwell in his presence are the church of the Firstborn; and they see as they are seen, and know as they are known, having received of his fulness and of his grace;

95 And he makes them equal in power, and in might, and in dominion.

96 And the glory of the celestial is one, even as the glory of the sun is one.

102 Last of all, these all are they who will not be gathered with the saints, to be caught up unto the church of the Firstborn, and received into the cloud.

&&

D&C 77:11 Q. What are we to understand by sealing the one hundred and forty-four thousand, out of all the tribes of Israel—twelve thousand out of every tribe?

A. We are to understand that those who are sealed are high priests, ordained unto the holy order of God, to administer the everlasting gospel; for they are they who are ordained out of every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, by the angels to whom is given power over the nations of the earth, to bring as many as will come to the church of the Firstborn.


( This is what will happen before Christ comes in great power and glory and many members will be working with these celestial beings! )

D&C 78:21 For ye are the church of the Firstborn, and he will take you up in a cloud, and appoint every man his portion.

22 And he that is a faithful and wise steward shall inherit all things. Amen.

D&C 88:4 This Comforter is the promise which I give unto you of eternal life, even the glory of the celestial kingdom;

5 Which glory is that of the church of the Firstborn, even of God, the holiest of all, through Jesus Christ his Son—

6 He that ascended up on high, as also he descended below all things, in that he comprehended all things, that he might be in all and through all things, the light of truth;

7 Which truth shineth. This is the light of Christ. As also he is in the sun, and the light of the sun, and the power thereof by which it was made.

D&C 93:21 And now, verily I say unto you, I was in the beginning with the Father, and am the Firstborn;

22 And all those who are begotten through me are partakers of the glory of the same, and are the church of the Firstborn.


( This offer is because we have with Jesus Christ worked out our salvation and exaltation - that is the Highest Glory that can bestowed upon man - to become as God is. )


23 Ye were also in the beginning with the Father; that which is Spirit, even the Spirit of truth;

D&C 107:18 The power and authority of the higher, or Melchizedek Priesthood, is to hold the keys of all the spiritual blessings of the church—


( No one can do this - meaning become a member or the church of the firstborn with out taking upon themselves the covenants of the temple and the power of Melchizedek priesthood - doesn't matter if they are a man or woman and they can not do this with out a companion - given to them in this life or in the here after - this is not a single individual glory - Just like heavenly father is Not single - he is marries or sealed to a wife... )

19 To have the privilege of receiving the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, to have the heavens opened unto them, to commune with the general assembly and church of the Firstborn, and to enjoy the communion and presence of God the Father, and Jesus the mediator of the new covenant.

20 The power and authority of the lesser, or Aaronic Priesthood, is to hold the keys of the ministering of angels, and to administer in outward ordinances, the letter of the gospel, the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, agreeable to the covenants and commandments.

Three Kingdoms of Glory

Just hours before the Savior performed the atoning sacrifice that ended in his death and resurrection, he told the Apostles, "In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you" (John 14:2). The atonement made possible salvation for God's children in a one of several kingdoms prepared by the Savior. Brigham Young taught, "The kingdoms that God has prepared are innumerable. . . How may kingdoms there are has not been told to us" (Journal of Discourses 8:154).

On February 16, 1832, the Lord gave to the Prophet Joseph Smith a series of visions revealing that the "many mansions" the Savior prepared for God's children are divided into three general categories: the celestial, terrestrial, and telestial kingdoms (see D&C 76).

Celestial Kingdom: The Place of the Church of the Firstborn


In the same revelation, Joseph Smith was told what one must do to qualify for entrance into the celestial kingdom:

They are they who received the testimony of Jesus, and believed on his name and were baptized after the manner of his burial, being buried in the water in his name, and this according to the commandment which he has given--

That by keeping the commandments they might be washed and cleansed from all their sins, and receive the Holy Spirit by the laying on of the hands of him who is ordained and sealed unto this power;


And who overcome by faith, and are sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise, which the Father sheds forth upon all those who are just and true. (D&C 76:51-53).

Of those who qualify to enter the celestial kingdom, the Lord declared: "They are they who are the church of the Firstborn" (D&C 76:54).


Highest Level of Celestial Kingdom is the Church of the Firstborn

But the phrase "church of the Firstborn" does not have reference to the celestial kingdom in general. In May, 1843, twelve years after the vision of the celestial kingdom found in D&C 76, the Prophet taught,


"In the celestial glory there are three heavens or degrees" (D&C 131:1). Joseph Fielding Smith taught that only those who achieve the highest level of the celestial kingdom or exaltation are of the Church of the Firstborn: "Those who gain exaltation in the celestial kingdom are those who are members of the Church of the Firstborn; in other words, those who keep all the commandments of the Lord. There will be many who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who shall never become members of the Church of the Firstborn. (Doctrines of Salvation, 2:41; emphasis added).


Again, he said: "Eternal life is life in the presence of the Father and the Son. Those who receive it become members of the 'Church of the Firstborn' and are heirs as sons and daughters of God. They receive the fulness of blessings. They become like the Father and the Son and are joint-heirs with Jesus Christ" (Doctrines of Salvation, 2:9).


Therefore, only those have been exalted are members of the Church of the Firstborn. Bruce R. McConkie taught: "as The Church of Jesus Christ is [God's] earthly church, so The Church of the Firstborn is [God's] heavenly church, albeit its members are limited to exalted beings, for whom the family unit continues and who gain an inheritance in the highest heaven of the celestial world" (The Promised Messiah, p.47).


Temple Ordinances Necessary to Enter Church of Firstborn

The sacred ordinances performed in the temple are essential in becoming a member of the Church of the Firstborn. This was made clear by Joseph Smith. On May 4, 1842, the day the Prophet introduced the temple ordinances of the washing and anointing and the endowment in this dispensation, he wrote:


I spent the day in the upper part of the store . . . in council with General James Adams, of Springfield, Patriarch Hyrum Smith, Bishops Newel K. Whitney and George Miller, and President Brigham Young and Elders Heber C. Kimball and Willard Richards, instructing them in the principles and order of the Priesthood, attending to washings, anointings, endowments and the communication of keys pertaining to the Aaronic Priesthood, and so on to the highest order of the Melchizedek Priesthood, setting forth the order pertaining to the Ancient of Days, and all those plans and principles by which any one is enabled to secure the fullness of those blessing which have been prepared for the Church of the Firstborn, and come up and abide in the presence of the Eloheim in the eternal worlds. (History of the Church 5:1-2; Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.237; emphasis added)


In line with this, Brigham Young who was in attendance on this occasion later stated: "The ordinances of the house of God are expressly for the Church of the Firstborn" (Discourses of Brigham Young, p.397; and Journal of Discourse, 8:154).


Though D&C 76:51-53 (quoted earlier) does not specifically state that temple ordinances are necessary for entrance into the Church of the Firstborn, it is, however, implied in verse 53 which states that one of the prerequisites for those who qualify for the celestial kingdom are those "who overcome by faith." In 1835, Joseph Smith taught the Quorum of the Twelve that temple ordinances were a necessary part of overcoming all things: "You need an endowment, brethren, in order that you may be prepared and able to overcome all things" (History of the Church, 2:309; Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.91).


( This power to overcome all things - is through covenants and righteousness - it is through Holiness - it is through godliness and the power of God and Jesus Christ - also the Holy Ghost and the calling and election made sure! - more on this in the future... )


Joseph Fielding Smith taught necessity of temple ordinances to become a member of the Church of the Firstborn in these terms:


The higher ordinances in the temple of God pertain to exaltation in the celestial kingdom. . . . In order to receive this blessing, one must keep the full law, must abide the law by which that kingdom is governed; for, "He who is not able to abide the law of a celestial kingdom cannot abide a celestial glory." So being ordained an elder, or a high priest, or an apostle, or even President of the Church, is not the thing that brings the exaltation, but obedience to the laws and the ordinances and the covenants required of those who desire to become members of the Church of the Firstborn, as these are administered in the house of the Lord.


He then stated:

To become a member of the Church of the Firstborn, as I understand it, is to become one of the inner circle. We are all members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by being baptized and confirmed, and there are many who seem to be content to remain such without obtaining the privileges of exaltation. (Doctrines of Salvation, 2:42).


Again, on another occasion, he wrote:

Each person baptized into the Church is under obligation to keep the commandments of the Lord. He is under covenant, for baptism is a "new and an everlasting covenant." (D.C. 22:1.) When he has proved himself by a worthy life, having been faithful in all things required of him, then it is his privilege to receive other covenants and to take upon himself other obligations which will make of him an heir, and he will become a member of the "Church of the Firstborn." (The Way to Perfection, p.208)


Finally, he taught:

The Lord has made it possible for us to become members of the Church of the Firstborn, by receiving the blessings of the house of the Lord and overcoming all things. Thus we become heirs, "priests and kings, who have received of his fulness, and of his glory," who shall "dwell in the presence of God and his Christ forever and ever," with full exaltation. Are such blessings worth having? (Doctrines of Salvation, 2:42-43)


Likewise, Bruce R. McConkie testified: "The temple ordinances open the door to gaining all power and all wisdom and all knowledge. Temple ordinances open up the way to membership in the Church of the Firstborn" (Conference Report, October 1955, p.13).

Temple Marriage Gate into Church of the Firstborn


The temple ordinances of washing and anointing, endowment, and sealings are not isolated ordinances but are interrelated. The marriage ordinance is the culmination of all ordinances of the priesthood. Elder Boyd K. Packer has noted that all other ordinances of salvation "were preliminary and preparatory to your coming to the altar to be sealed as husband and wife for time and for all eternity (The Holy Temple, p. 69). As the culminating ordinance, temple marriage is gate into the highest level of the celestial kingdom and thus the gate into the Church of the Firstborn. Bruce R. McConkie has written:


( Notice he said Gate - meaning you have started on a path that will lead you there - you went through a Gate you are in the road but you will have a long ways to go on that path! It's not all to be done in this life! You have started it - now it has to be worked on and perfected until it is finished - until you are perfected and finished! )

The Church of the Firstborn is the church among exalted beings in the highest heaven of the celestial world. It is the church among those for whom the family unit continues in eternity. In a sense it is the inner circle within the Lord's church on earth. It is composed of those who have entered into that patriarchal order which is called the new and everlasting covenant of marriage. As baptism admits repentant souls to membership in the earthly church, so celestial marriage opens the door to membership in the heavenly church. (A New Witness for the Articles of Faith, p.337)


On an earlier occasion, he stated:

We believe something more, as several of these brethren have said during this conference: that neither is the man without the woman nor the woman without the man in the Lord, but that the gate to exaltation and the fullness of eternal life in the kingdom of the Father is the new and everlasting covenant of marriage; and just as men may enter in at the gate of repentance and baptism, and work out for themselves a salvation hereafter by faith and diligence, so they may enter in at the gate of celestial marriage, and, conditioned upon keeping that covenant, come up in the resurrection as husband and wife, the family unit continuing through all eternity, and thus, eventually -- as members of the family of God, members of the Church of the Firstborn -- become joint heirs with Jesus Christ, and receive, inherit, and possess all things. (Conference Report, October 1954, p.125)


The Earthly Church Prepares People for Church of Firstborn

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints exists to prepare God's children to enter the Church of the Firstborn. Elder McConkie wrote: "The purpose of the church on earth is to prepare us for an inheritance in the church in heaven" (A New Witness for the Articles of Faith, p.337).


Hence the Lord stated that those who are ordained to the priesthood in the last days are "ordained unto the holy order of God, to administer the everlasting gospel; for they are they who are ordained out of every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, by the angels to whom is given power over the nations of the earth, to bring as many as will come to the church of the Firstborn" (D&C 77:11; emphasis added).


Blessings of the Church of the Firstborn


Joseph Smith declared the blessings of those who enter the Church of the Firstborn in these words: "They who dwell in his presence are the church of the Firstborn; and they see as they are seen, and know as they are known, having received of his fulness and of his grace; And he makes them equal in power, and in might, and in dominion" (D&C 76:94-95). In other words, those who receive the highest level of the celestial kingdom become as God, exalted beings who are equal in power, might, and dominion with the Father. To them "the Father has given all things" even of "his fulness, and of his glory" (D&C 76:55-56). They "inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, all heights and depths" (D&C 132:19).


Thus they become gods themselves. Having been made equal with God's power, dominion, and authority, they do the work of gods: "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life" of their own offspring.


Communication With Church of the Firstborn

( The Church of the Firstborn already exists and it does so in the highest parts of the Celestial Kingdom - there they rule over all things - and in time we will too! We will take orders from them and Christ - before and after he comes in great power and glory... )


It is the privilege of those who have received temple ordinances and have been faithful in the covenants made therein to be able to communicate with the Church of the Firstborn. Concerning this, the Lord has said: "The power and authority of the higher, or Melchizedek Priesthood, is to hold the keys of all the spiritual blessings of the church--To have the privilege of receiving the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, to have the heavens opened unto them, to commune with the general assembly and church of the Firstborn, and to enjoy the communion and presence of God the Father, and Jesus the mediator of the new covenant" (D&C 107:18-19; emphasis added).


How and when does this communication take place? This is one of the privileges of those who make their calling and election sure (though it is possible that certain circumstances may require that this communication take place prior to one's calling and election is made sure- see Parley P. Pratt's talk given at the laying of the cornerstones of the Salt Lake Temple on April 6, 1853 in Journal of Discourses, 2:43-47). In June of 1839, Joseph Smith taught the Church:


After a person has faith in Christ, repents of his sins, and is baptized for the remission of his sins and receives the Holy Ghost, (by the laying on of hands), which is the first Comforter, then let him continue to humble himself before God, hungering and thirsting after righteousness, and living by every word of God, and the Lord will soon say unto him, Son, thou shalt be exalted.


When the Lord has thoroughly proved him, and finds that the man is determined to serve Him at all hazards, then the man will find his calling and his election made sure, then it will be his privilege to receive the other Comforter . . .


He then stated:


Now what is this other Comforter? It is no more nor less than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself; and this is the sum and substance of the whole matter; that when any man obtains this last Comforter, he will have the personage of Jesus Christ to attend him, or appear unto him from time to time, and even He will manifest the Father unto him, and they will take up their abode with him, and the visions of the heavens will be opened unto him, and the Lord will teach him face to face, and he may have a perfect knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of God; and this is the state and place the ancient Saints arrived at when they had such glorious visions -- Isaiah, Ezekiel, John upon the Isle of Patmos, St. Paul in the three heavens, and all the Saints who held communion with the general assembly and Church of the Firstborn. (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.150).

Such communication with the Church of the Firstborn is for personal edification and is not shared publicly. Joseph Smith spoke of certain Biblical saints who had communicated with the "general assembly and church of the firstborn" (see Hebrews 12:22-23).


He asked: "What did they learn by coming to the spirits of just men made perfect? Is it written? No. What they learned has not been and could not have been written" (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p.325)


(These things are so sacred that they can not be written or given to any one - you must get them from Jesus Christ himself - and they are commanded not to record these things because of the level of sacredness etc. - So they are only give to those worthy of this honor and not shared with the world! )



1 view
  • White Facebook Icon

© 2023 by TheHours. Proudly created with Wix.com