GPC45: The Postmortal Spirit World, Gospel Principles Comments and Resources

Gospel Principles
Unit 10: Life after Death
Chapter 45: The Postmortal Spirit World
Comments and Resources

"The spirits of all men, as soon as they depart from this mortal body, whether they are good or evil...are taken home to that God who gave them life, where there is a separation, a partial judgment, and the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they expand in wisdom, where they have respite from all their troubles, and where care and sorrow do not annoy" (Joseph F. Smith, Improvement Era, June 1904, p. 621)"

"The great miser of departed spirits in the world of spirits, where they go after death, is to know that they come short of the glory that others enjoy and that they might have enjoyed themselves, and they are their own accusers" (Discourses of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 127)

During the study of this topic, we will learn more of the conditions existing in the spirit world and the work of preaching the gospel that is being done there.

Resources:
Gospel Principles: chapter 45 Chapter 41 (2010) manual
Jesus the Christ, chapter 36.
A Marvelous Work and a Wonder, chapter 13.

Scriptures:

2 Nephi 9:12-19
  "12 And this death of which I have spoken, which is the spiritual death, shall deliver up its deadwhich spiritual death is hellwherefore, death and hell must deliver up their dead, and hell must deliver up its captive spirits, and the grave must deliver up its captive bodies, and the bodies and the spirits of men will be restored one to the otherand it is by the power of the resurrection of the Holy One of Israel.
  13 O how great the plan of our God! For on the other hand, the paradise of God must deliver up the spirits of the righteous, and the grave deliver up the body of the righteousand the spirit and the body is restored to itself again, and all men become incorruptible, and immortal, and they are living souls, having a perfect knowledge like unto us in the flesh, save it be that our knowledge shall be perfect.
  14 Wherefore, we shall have a perfect knowledge of all our guilt, and our uncleanness, and our nakednessand the righteous shall have a perfect knowledge of their enjoyment, and their righteousness, being clothed with purity, yea, even with the robe of righteousness.
  15 And it shall come to pass that when all men shall have passed from this first death unto life, insomuch as they have become immortal, they must appear before the judgment-seat of the Holy One of Israeland then cometh the judgment, and then must they be judged according to the holy judgment of God.
  16 And assuredly, as the Lord liveth, for the Lord God hath spoken it, and it is his eternal word, which cannot pass away, that they who are righteous shall be righteous still, and they who are filthy shall be filthy stillwherefore, they who are filthy are the devil and his angelsand they shall go away into everlasting fire, prepared for themand their torment is as a lake of fire and brimstone, whose flame ascendeth up forever and ever and has no end.
  17 O the greatness and the justice of our God! For he executeth all his words, and they have gone forth out of his mouth, and his law must be fulfilled.
  18 But, behold, the righteous, the saints of the Holy One of Israel, they who have believed in the Holy One of Israel, they who have endured the crosses of the world, and despised the shame of it, they shall inherit the kingdom of God, which was prepared for them from the foundation of the world, and their joy shall be full forever.
  19 O the greatness of the mercy of our God, the Holy One of Israel! For he delivereth his saints from that awful monster the devil, and death, and hell, and that lake of fire and brimstone, which is endless torment."

Alma 40
"Christ bringeth to pass the resurrection of all men The righteous dead go to paradise and the wicked to outer darkness to await the day of their resurrection All things shall be restored to their proper and perfect frame in the resurrection.  About 73 B.C."

D&C 128:6-22
"An epistle from Joseph Smith the Prophet to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, containing further directions on baptism for the deaddated at Nauvoo, Illinois, September 6, 1842. HC 5:148-153.
6-9, Their records are binding and recorded on earth and in heaven 10-14, The baptismal font is a similitude of the grave 15-17, Elijah restored power relative to baptism for the dead 18-21, All of the keys, powers, and authorities of past dispensations have been restored 22-25, Glad and glorious tidings acclaimed for the living and the dead."

D&C 137
"A vision given to Joseph Smith the Prophet, in the temple at Kirtland, Ohio, January 21, 1836. HC 2:380-381. The occasion was the administration of the ordinances of the endowment as far as they had then been revealed.
1-6, The Prophet sees his brother Alvin in the celestial kingdom 7-9, The doctrine of salvation for the dead is revealed 10, All children are saved in the celestial kingdom."
  "1 The heavens were opened upon us, and I beheld the celestial kingdom of God, and the glory thereof, whether in the body or out I cannot tell.
  2 I saw the transcendent beauty of the gate through which the heirs of that kingdom will enter, which was like unto circling flames of fire
  3 Also the blazing throne of God, whereon was seated the Father and the Son.
  4 I saw the beautiful streets of that kingdom, which had the appearance of being paved with gold.
  5 I saw Father Adam and Abrahamand my father and my mothermy brother Alvin, that has long since slept
  6 And marveled how it was that he had obtained an inheritance in that kingdom, seeing that he had departed this life before the Lord had set his hand to gather Israel the second time, and had not been baptized for the remission of sins.
  7 Thus came the voice of the Lord unto me, saying: All who have died without a knowledge of this gospel, who would have received it if they had been permitted to tarry, shall be heirs of the celestial kingdom of God
  8 Also all that shall die henceforth without a knowledge of it, who would have received it with all their hearts, shall be heirs of that kingdom
  9 For I, the Lord, will judge all men according to their works, according to the desire of their hearts.
  10 And I also beheld that all children who die before they arrive at the years of accountability are saved in the celestial kingdom of heaven."

D&C 138
"A vision, given to President Joseph F. Smith in Salt Lake City, Utah, on October 3, 1918. In his opening address at the eighty-ninth Semiannual General Conference of the Church, on October 4, 1918, President Smith declared that he had received several divine communications during the previous months.  One of these, concerning the Savior s visit to the spirits of the dead while his body was in the tomb, he had received the previous day.  It was written immediately following the close of the conferenceon October 31, 1918, it was submitted to the counselors in the First Presidency, the Council of the Twelve, and the Patriarch, and it was unanimously accepted by them.
1-10, President Joseph F. Smith ponders upon the writings of Peter and our Lord's visit to the spirit world11-24, He sees the righteous dead assembled in paradise and Christ's ministry among them25-37, How the preaching of the gospel was organized among the spirits38-52, President Smith sees Adam, Eve, and many of the holy prophets in the spirit world who considered their spirit state before their resurrection as a bondage53-60, The righteous dead of this day continue their labors in the world of spirits."

Luke 16:19-31
  "19 ¶ There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
  20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
  21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
  22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried
  23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
  24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tonguefor I am tormented in this flame. 
  25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
  26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannotneither can they pass to us, that would come from thence. 
  27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
  28 For I have five brethrenthat he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
  29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophetslet them hear them.
  30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
  31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead."

1 Peter 3:18-20
  "18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
  19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison
  20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water

1 Peter 4:5-6
  5 Who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the quick and the dead.
  6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit."

Topical Guide:
                            Dead
                            Death
                            Grave
                            Gulf
                            Hell
                            Mortality
                            Paradise, Paradisiacal
                            Salvation for the Dead
                            Spirits, Disembodied
                            Spirits in Prison
                            Spirit World


Bible Dictionary:
                                Abraham's Bosom
                                Hell
                                Paradise


Guide to the Scriptures:
                                             Heaven
                                             Spirit Prison
                                             Spirit World
                                             Paradise
                                             Premortal Life

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Moroni 10:4-5
  "4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
  5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things."

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