katmr wrote:I just want to say thank you for all the thoughts on this thread and thank you for letting me share some of my experience. RabbanahLlama, I just have a question for you. I think I have some understanding on your thoughts but just have some sincere questions. Do you think members who have been rebaptized for this sin, should never be allowed rebaptism which is necessary to return to the Celestial Kingdom? Do you think once they have been rebaptized and repented with a complete and broken heart and turned to the Lord, that they are still not clean through the Atonement?
Do you think a person who has committed this sin has completely given themselves over to Satan and that there is absolutely no way back for them? Are you saying the Church is operating differently than God would have it operate by allowing rebaptism? or Priesthood blessings?
I know this isn't your intention but as gmetz stated, there may be those earnestly trying to repent who's hopes may be dashed and believe me when you're going through a repentance process of that severity, it doesn't take much to dash those hopes and give in to the lie that you are forever claimed by Satan (which Satan has worked so hard on me to believe time and time again.) but I do bear my testimony that my Savior has claimed my soul and he remembers this no more. How absolutely amazing is that? I testify and bear testimony of His Atonement for me and I am so thankful for his mercy and love that we can not even begin to comprehend. I'm truly hoping to be able to have my temple blessings restored soon and have worked for it with all of my heart. It is the most difficult and long way back and if you have any understanding what it takes to make it back, (literally going through hell and back) judgements would cease and those people would be welcomed back with love just as the Savior does. I only say this because of what I have experienced. You are free to your beliefs and I do respect those but for me personally to say that me or anyone else that has committed this sin has no chance at entering the Celestial Kingdom is for me to deny the Atonement made for me by the Savior and for anyone else that is truly repentant. Christ offers perfect hope and his promises to the truly repentant are that their sins are remembered no more. This is what I believe and know to be true and I hope for anyone struggling with a sin this severe they will turn to the Savior for deliverance. They do not have to be claimed by Satan. I am so thankful for the Atonement in my life and I need it every single day and so thankful that the Savior provided a way back for me.
katmr.... I think everyone here appreciates you sharing your experience. I thank you for your testimony.
There are, however, many who are guilty of this grievous sin who do not relate to your experience even slightly. There are those who commit adultery and simply bide their time for the year when all is (supposedly) restored. There is no "hell and back" for them. There is sometimes little if any guilt whatsoever. They believe the Atonement covers their willful disobedience. They do not take seriously the warnings in the endowment about what will happen if they break those covenants. They divorce the old one and marry the new one a year later in the temple and everything's back where it was. They are surrounded by so many who are walking the same path. Surely they is safety in numbers. They have no fear of hell - they are in perfectly good standing with the Church and expect their Celestial rewards alongside all the ancient Patriarchs such as Joseph who was imprisoned rather than fall to this sin. They are just as good. Just as clean. Just as deserving. There was a time when adulterers were stoned and we wouldn't even be having this conversation. We've come a long way.
I appreciate Llama's quotes he posted. (And really, if they upset anyone... it's Brother Joseph and Joseph Fielding Smith, Jr. that you are upset with.) I think this is a good reminder of the grievous nature of this sin next to murder in its seriousness. Sin darkens the mind. The more one has sinned the more one's light and truth is taken away. The more one sins, the less they see things as they really are. They should, like Corianton, listen to and follow the counsel of those who have not been guilty of such grievous sins for the remainder of their lives.
Some don't agree with the Church raising the bar on missionaries. I do. As times get closer we need men (and women) who have the Holy Ghost. Deception will be even more rampant and the blurring of good/evil more subtle. Let's not be deceived into thinking adultery or other sins breaking the law of chastity are easy to overcome. Or that we can know good and evil, willingly choose the evil, easily be forgiven and then be in the same boat as those who knew good and evil and chose, sometimes at great cost, the good.