Sunday, July 26, 2009

Virginia Times

Being in Virginia I've come to meet new people and my perspectives on the whole church and being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS or Mormon) has changed and grown. I now have a better view on things. I was called and sustained to be a Sunday School teacher for the Gospel Doctrine class. Last sunday I was priveledged to teach the lesson about missonary work. Now, you could say that i have crushes on all missionaries. Seriously! I think they are the greatest things ever. Especially the one in my current branch where I am. Shhhh. . . Keep it a secret. Anyways, I was able to gain a lot more on the subject of missionary work. Specifically on the saints during the Nauvoo times. These saints had to overcome and sacrifice so much, in which they had so little. They had to overcome leaving their families, really no contact for two or MORE years, illness, persecution and so much more. Now in this dispensation, we also have a lot to overcome. And yes every member is a missionary, whether you know it or not (crazy concept, but also true). Anyways, our missionaries (this can also be applied to modern day LDS saints as well) today also have their fair (if you could call it that) share of trials. Well this whole ordeal about being a Sunday School teacher is SO COOL to me. I was talking to my friend last night and we were discussing my next lesson and it was so cool to talk to him about it. Seriously, I've never really TALKED gospel points before. It wasn't fear that held me back, I think it was more of pride. Wellll fear could be involoved in this too. Fear of my pride.

This brings my to my topic. My lesson in a few weeks is on doing temple ordinances for the dead. More concentrated on baptisms for the dead. Now I'm trying to view this from all different sides. SOOOO I need your help (like in Dora. ha)!! How, as a LDS member of the church, would you describe to a non-member what baptisms for the dead are? Why would they need or want to learn it, and how could it be of value to them? How do you feel when you do any ordinances for the dead?

For those of you who are not LDS (Mormon), what do you think when you hear about baptisms for the dead? No we don't baptize dead people! ha! But seriously, thoughts please welcome.

And I will post my lesson on here. Mainly, because it's going to be a SWEET lesson! If it is ok, i may quote you in my lesson too! So if you would not like to be quoted, please state. Thanks all for your help!



Sarah Blue said...

First, I love the new format of your blog. Very cute and very classy.

Second, in explaining baptisms for the dead you must first explain why baptism is important. Jesus said that for any person to enter into the kingdom of God he must be baptized. It was so important that Jesus himself, who had never sinned, was baptized. This shows that baptism isn't just about repenting of sins and being washed clean. Baptism is a covenant that you enter into with God, and are thus enabled to enter His Kingdom. Without this ordinance, a person cannot enter the Kingdom of matter how righteous they were in life.

So what if you weren't baptized during your lifetime? What if you never even heard of Christ,let alone baptism while you were alive? Well, sorry but you still can't enter. There are no freebie admissions. But Heavenly Father, being a kind and loving God, wants all His children to have the opportunity to come back to him. The way...Baptism for the Dead.

A person, acting as proxy for a relative who has passed on, is baptized in that person's place. They act as that person to make the baptismal covenant with God, thus ensuring that person a chance to enter into God's Kingdom. Now I say ensure the "chance" because even though the person was baptized by proxy, that person still has the choice to accept that baptism or reject it. A person's agency is not taken away when they die. It is still in full force. Therefore they must choose to accept the baptism.

It's the same for the other temple ordinances as well. A person acts as proxy for one who has died.

And I think that's enough rambling on that topic. I love you and wish you luck with your lesson. :)

QueenBee said...

I love Sarah's comment. Being married to Josh he pointed something out to me that you would THINK I would have figured out on my own but since I didn't serve a mission... yeah. Anyhow. It is important to mention how baptisms for the dead are symbolic in that the baptismal font is below ground. We bury our dead below ground as well. And you have to start off with baptism as the first ordinance to obtaining the rest of temple ordinances. Plus the way that LDS people do baptisms is SOOOO different from every other church and religion. We give children the opportunity at age 8 when they know what accountability is, to get baptized. Other churches do baptisms when people are babies but how does an infant know right from wrong? LDS members CHOOSE to take on the responsibility and become baptized into the gospel, and it's such a blessing and shuld be viewed as such. Those are my thoughts. P.S. you should totally ask Maria who got baptized laqter in life her thoughts and feelings and have her email them to you. She is so helpful!