Monday, October 25, 2010

The Fall of Adam and Eve

The presence of the two trees in the garden provided the necessary choices for Adam and Eve to keep their agency, or break their covenants. It was given to Adam to choose, but God forbad the eating of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

In the pre-mortal life God instructed Man and Woman to have children:

“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth...” (Genesis 1:28)40

“...[F]or they [wives] are given unto him to multiply and replenish the earth, according to my commandment, and to fulfil the promise which was given by my Father before the foundation of the world, and for their exaltation in the eternal worlds, that they may bear the souls of men; for herein is the work of my Father continued, that he may be glorified.” (emphasis added Doctrine and Covenants 132:63)

This commandment and promise in the pre-mortal world are part of the Covenant of Creation. Family associations are central to the gospel plan.<1> In mortality Adam was again commanded to have Eve stay with him, to multiply, and the replenish the earth.

Lucifer, also know as Satan had been cast out of the pre-mortal realm, to a spirit realm in which he could interact in earth.

 Satan told a partial truth and Eve bought into the lie, and she ate the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (she was beguiled, or tricked). She approached Adam in an attempt to have him sin along with her, and he first refused. After a discussion, he realized two things:

1.) He would be alone in the world, and would not be able to keep Eve with him, and not keep that commandment (which was not his fault and would not have been a sin for him). Because of Eve’s sins Adam was faced with a problem, he could still keep the commandment, but some of the purposes of another commandment would not be met, he would be alone.

2.) Adam also understood that having children was central to God’s plan, and he would be alone in the Garden of Eden, yes there would have been no fall, but there also would have been no children (because Eve would not be there).<2> 

Adam made a choice, ate the fruit and brought sin and death into the world. “...Because that Adam fell, we are; and by his fall came death; and we are made partakers of misery and woe.” (Moses 6:48)

Adam could have kept all of God’s commands, it was within his power. The dichotomies came into play after Eve disobeyed. 

Just as the atonement was in effect prior to the crucification (applied to many worlds), the effects of the fall existed prior to Adam’s arrival to earth too.


The fall was a universal fall, it applied to all the world, for the time of the temporal world, forward and backward.

 The justice, or reaction, for the sins in the Garden of Eden was:

• Physical death. Death came upon man and all of earthly creation. God said that man shall surly die.

• Spiritual death.<4> God can not dwell with the least amount of sin, man could no longer dwell in the Kingdom of God, in any of it’s degrees. Without some intervention Adam and the rest of us are all going to hell, outer darkness, and endless separation from God. (Moses 5:57)

 Spiritual death is the same state of being that the Sons Of Perdition are in. LDS theology includes a “Universal Fall.”

Adam and Eve explained their reasons for the fall to God. And God explained to them the consequences (justice) of their actions. Their eyes were opened, they would die physically, they would be cast out of the Garden of Eden, they would be separated from God, they were spiritually dead, Eve would suffer in child birth, and Adam would have to work by the sweat of his brow. Thus, the state of man. 

This spiritual death that Adam and Eve experienced brought some changes to them and to us. Man inherited a fallen nature, we became devilish, carnal, sensual, and sinful. We became subject to, and servant of the devil:

“For they [the wicked] are carnal and devilish, and the devil has power over them; yea, even that old serpent that did beguile our first parents, which was the cause of their fall; which was the cause of all mankind becoming carnal, sensual, devilish, knowing evil from good, subjecting themselves to the devil.” (Mosiah 16:3)

This is the state of mankind, unless and until a change takes place, we are sons of perdition. It is critical that we understand our fallen nature and position before God. We did not become recipients of the Terrestrial or Telestial Kingdoms because of the fall, we are justly cast out to outer darkness, separated from God forever.

“Wherefore, I, the Lord God, caused that he [Adam] should be cast out from the Garden of Eden, from my presence, because of his transgression, wherein he became spiritually dead, which is the first death, even that same death which is the last death, which is spiritual, which shall be pronounced upon the wicked when I shall say: Depart, ye cursed.” (Doctrine and Covenants 29:41)

The “first death” or the spiritual death is the “same” thing that is pronounced at the final judgement on the sons of perdition at the “second death.” And, unless there is some intervention we are all sons and daughters of perdition.

“And thus we see that all mankind were fallen, and they were in the grasp of justice; yea, the justice of God, which consigned them forever to be cut off from his presence.” (Alma 42:14)

“Wherefore, all mankind were in a lost and in a fallen state, and ever would be...” (1 Nephi 10:6)

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned...” (Romans 5:12)

“...the fall came by reason of transgression; and because man became fallen they were cut off from the presence of the Lord.” (2 Nephi 9:6)

“Wherefore, it came to pass that the devil tempted Adam, and he partook of the forbidden fruit and transgressed the commandment, wherein he became subject to the will of the devil, because he yielded unto temptation.” (Doctrine and Covenants 29:40)

“...Now we see that Adam did fall by the partaking of the forbidden fruit, according to the word of God; and thus we see, that by his fall, all mankind became a lost and fallen people.” (Alma 12:22)

“...spiritual death; for all mankind, by the fall of Adam being cut off from the presence of the Lord, are considered as dead, both as to things temporal and to things spiritual.” (Helaman 14:16)

“For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless...” (Mosiah 3:19)

The fall that came upon Adam and Eve, and to each of us is real, and drastic. God did not spare the fallen angels in the pre-mortal life for their sins, and if we don’t find a resolution, he will not spare us.

The resolution is Christ.
<1> “We, the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, solemnly proclaim that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.” The Family: A Proclamation to the World.

<2> “And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden [alone]. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.” 2 Nephi 2:22

<3> “[plants and animals] ...lived and died, age after age, while the earth was yet unfit for human habitation." (Elder James E. Talmage, The Earth and Man.)

<4> “...from my presence, because of his transgression, wherein he became spiritually dead, which is the first death...” Doctrine and Covenants 28:41

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Agency and Choice

In the pre-mortal world of spirits, the great Michael was chosen to come and represent all of us, and by our signing onto the plan, Michael represented each of us vicariously.

In Hebrew, Adam (אדם) means “man” and means “human.”<1> We are all Adams, following the path of the fall and redemption of our father Adam. In Hebrew the phrase “the man” is the word “the Adam” (חאדם). 

Michael’s spirit was breathed into a body on earth, and his earthly name was Adam. This was true with Adam with his mate Eve. They were introduced into a garden that represented a Terrestrial Glory.

Pursuant to the Covenant of Creation Adam and Eve were given their agency, “ the Garden of Eden, gave I unto man his agency.” (Moses 7:32) God gave this agency specifically to Adam and Eve, and that gift extended to all humanity since they represented all men and women. 

Agency is not the same as free choice. The concept of free choice implies a choice without repercussions. If a person meets a beggar on the street and is asked for charity the person may choose to give or not give, but if the possible donor has made a covenant to give to the poor, he is an agent of that covenant and can’t withhold charity without a violation of the covenant.

God deals with man, and builds a relationship with man, by covenants, one covenant upon another, till a full reconciliation is achieved. 

Adam and the rest of humanity were never given “free choice,” we were given agency, and the choice to choose to keep our covenants, or turn away from them.

We all entered into the Covenant of Creation, and thereby accepted Adam as our representatives before God in the garden. This was a family event, our father Adam and his children.

 Adam was given commandments that defined the limits of his agency. Adam and Eve received the two commandments, one that Adam and Eve remain together, and second, that they do not eat of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

A part of true agency is choice. Within the garden humanity was given agency and the choice to keep the agency or turn away from it. Without the choice to keep our agency or not, the purposes of the Covenant of Creation can not be met.

 “And to bring about his eternal [Covenant of Creation] purposes in the end of man, after he had created our first parents, and the beasts of the field and the fowls of the air, and in fine, all things which are created, it must needs be that there was an opposition; even the forbidden fruit in opposition to the tree of life; the one being sweet and the other bitter.”

“Wherefore, the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself.

Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other.” (2 Nephi 2:15 & 16)

In this life we have choice and agency, and we should understand each.


<1> Strongs Hebrew #120

Friday, October 22, 2010


In the pre-mortal world there was a plan put forward by God the Father that we now call the Plan of Salvation. Lucifer responded to the plan with a counter offer. His counter offer masqueraded as an acceptance, it contained limits and changes to the plan, and was geared to his personal benefit.

Lucifer is the archetype of an non-consecrated heart.

The Law of Consecration is the law of the Celestial Kingdom. If we wish to inherit a celestial glory we need to start demonstrating that we can live this law.

We follow Satan’s example when in our lives we wish to have, or attempt to negotiate a change from the plan. Before this world was created, certain rules were set in place that we must all abide by, that we trust will bring certain results.(1)

When we refuse to live by these rules we attempt to institute our own laws. As we become the instituter of new laws, we think to change the rules in opposition to God’s will. This is called becoming a law unto ourselves. The Plan of Salvation is the only way to Salvation and Sanctification.

“That [whoever] which breaketh a law, and abideth not by law, but seeketh to become a law unto itself [themselves], and willeth to abide in sin, and altogether abideth in sin, cannot be sanctified by law, neither by mercy, justice, nor judgment. Therefore, they must remain filthy still.”(2) (Doctrine and Covenants 88:35)

If someone in this life decides they don’t want the saving ordinance of baptism for example (assuming it has been properly presented to them), thinking that they have some unique relationship with God, and they can have the blessing of salvation, and reject the ordinances, they seek to become a law unto themselves. Thinking they have carved out some special rules for themselves, and that God will have to take them as they come. What they will find is that they will either repent, or be cast off to outer darkness.

A consecrated heart is born of the understanding that there is not more than one plan, and that any counter offer is a rejection of the plan. A consecrated heart doesn’t resist God at some point of opposition (The trials of this world) and in effect say “this is as far as I go” as though they can stop the plan from working upon them. In the throws of opposition, a consecrated heart seeks strength, relief, healing, enlightenment, sanctification, patience, and the determination to endure to the end. A sanctified heart clings to the covenants, ordinances, and the knowledge of the plan.

The temple is where we receive the covenant of consecration.

(1) “There is a law, irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated— And when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated.” Doctrine and Covenants 130:20-21.

(2) These people can’t be sanctified by law because they break the laws. They can’t be sanctified by mercy because they reject Christ and His mercy. Justice would condem them. They can’t be sanctified by judgment because they will be judged worthy of outer darkness, being filthy still.