Archive for the ‘fall of adam’ Tag

The Fall and the Garden of Eden

Reading: 2 Nephi 2:22-23,

Sorry about the break in posts.  This past Friday we left on a mini-vacation, and then Monday my husband was off work so we were out running the errands we didn’t run on Saturday.

It is the belief of some Christian sects that if Adam had not fallen then we would all be living happy, idyllic lives in the Garden of Eden.  However, in 2 Nephi 2:22-23, Lehi tells us that this is not the case:

And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. 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. And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin.

If Adam and Eve had never partaken of the fruit they would still be in the Garden of Eden, but they would be alone without any children.  They needed the knowledge of good and evil that came from partaking of the forbidden fruit in order to be able to have children.  They also would not be happy, or sad, but just neutral forever.  If it were up to me, I would choose to have some pain and risk in order to have the ability to choose for myself and gain true happiness.

When I think of some of the ideas that other people have about God, I can understand why so many other people revolt against religion.  If your idea of God is one that would create a beautiful perfect world, then give arbitrary rules, and then rip his creation away from that lovely state just because the silly rules were broken, then you would not want to believe in that kind of God.  However, when you see that God had a plan from the beginning, and that the things he does are necessary for that plan, and that the plan he has is the only way for any of us to gain joy, then you rejoice in having such a great God and Father.

If you’re just finding this post I would encourage you to go back and look at the posts in the past couple of weeks that further explain the things I talked about today.

Today I am going to start gathering some talks and scriptures about gratitude.  I have been working lately on being more grateful.  When I am grateful for the goodness of God and all that he has done for me I find it much easier to keep the commandments.

Are there some ideas about God that you have heard that cause you to not want to follow him?  Are there some ideas about God that have you heard that make it easier for you to follow him?  How can you know the true characteristics of God so you are not deceived?

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On Probation

Reading: 2 Nephi 2:20, Alma 12:24, Alma 34:2

When Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit one of the consequences is that they would die.  They would die spiritually, in that they would be separated from God.  And, they would die physically in that their spirits would be separated from their bodies.  However, this second physical death did not come right away.  This allowed Adam and Eve time to repent before their death, giving the opportunity to also reclaim spiritual life and become worthy to be reunited with God.  In 2 Nephi 2:20 it says:

And the days of the children of men were prolonged, according to the will of God, that they might repent while in the flesh; wherefore, their state became a state of probation, and their time was lengthened, according to the commandments which the Lord God gave unto the children of men.

We also, like Adam and Eve, are currently in a probationary period where we are given the opportunity to repent and return to God.  In Alma 12:24 it says:

And we see that death comes upon mankind, yea, the death which has been spoken of by Amulek, which is the temporal death; nevertheless there was a space granted unto man in which he might repent; therefore this life became a probationary state; a time to prepare to meet God; a time to prepare for that endless state which has been spoken of by us, which is after the resurrection of the dead.

Sometimes in my life I find it hard to keep focused on improving spiritually.  There is so much to do, and much of it is important, so it is easy for me to procrastinate spiritual goals for a “better time.”  However, we only have this life to repent so every day is precious.  We may be able to progress in the spirit world after death, but it will be much harder than it is during this life.  For the past month I have been trying hard to put spiritual goals first and it has been a great blessing for me as I am progressing faster spiritually than I have for a long time.

Today I am going to read the lesson for Relief Society and Sunday School this Sunday.  Almost every Saturday I plan to read the lesson, but since Saturdays are usually very busy I rarely actually follow through and read them.  So, instead of procrastinating until the last minute I’m going to read them early this week.

What spiritual goals do you procrastinate? How do you fight the habit of procrastination?

Adam and Eve Chose to Fall

Reading: 2 Nephi 2:15-16, LDS.org – Fall of Adam

We (Mormons) have some very different beliefs about the fall of Adam than other religions.  While many blame Adam for our fallen state, we believe that fall of Adam was a necessary part of the plan because if Adam did not fall from grace we would never have the opportunity to be born on the Earth, or to learn the differences between choosing good and evil.  You can read the following in the Gospel Topics section on the fall on LDS.org:

The Fall is an integral part of Heavenly Father’s plan of salvation (see 2 Nephi 2:15–16; 9:6). It has a twofold direction—downward yet forward. In addition to introducing physical and spiritual death, it gave us the opportunity to be born on the earth and to learn and progress.

It is important to understand the fall was part of the plan before you can understand 2 Nephi 2:15-16, which says:

And to bring about his eternal 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.

This scripture is saying that in order to fall Adam and Eve had to choose for themselves to break a commandment.  God could not simply cause them to fall because to do so would be unjust, and God is perfectly just.  So, God gave them a choice between the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  Eve (and Adam) partook of the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil of their own free will, thus bringing about the fall and plan of God.

Adam and Eve also later came to realize that it was necessary for them to fall in order to bring to pass the purposes of God and the happiness and exaltation of men.  In Moses 5:11-12 it says:

And Eve, his wife, heard all these things and was glad, saying: Were it not for our transgression we never should have had seed, and never should have known good and evil, and the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient. And Adam and Eve blessed the name of God, and they made all things known unto their sons and their daughters.

In my life it would be impossible for me to make any choices for myself unless I have more than one option to choose from.  For example, if I only had bread in my cupboard I could not choose to have chili for lunch.  God gives us options because he knows that we can only grow and be happy if we are able to choose for ourselves.  Sometimes he gives us bad options and tells us they are bad, but we are still free to choose for ourselves the right or the wrong so that we can know the joy of choosing right over wrong (or the pain of choosing wrong, which would also help us to learn).

I have a tendency to be extremely independent.  When I feel that I am being forced to do even simple things my instinct is to rebel, even if I would have made the same choice for myself anyway.  However, I rarely feel the need to rebel against God because I know that he has given me the ability to choose, and that he truly wants what is best for me.  I am grateful for a Heavenly Father who is willing to let us make bad choices so that he can preserve our right to choose.

Today I am going to choose to set up a babysitter so that my husband and I can go to the temple.  I’ll try for tomorrow (which is Saturday) but if not tomorrow then sometime later this month.

What choices did you/will you make today?