Monday, October 5, 2015
I recently heard a widower of a few years -- and a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints -- reflecting on his wife's passing. His wife had said that she looked forward to meeting Jesus in "Paradise" (the Spirit world) -- and her departed family members.
I did not have the heart to correct he, nor his late wife's incorrect understanding directly.
A significant number of newspaper obituaries of LDS Church members wrongly declare that a deceased person has gone back to their Heavenly Father.
I wish more LDS Church members would have a more accurate understanding of the Spirit World.
Jesus Christ is NOT present in the Spirit world, nor does he likely visit there.
Because he could only spend 3 days there, as a spirit, after his mortal death.
It IS the world of spirits after all, and all inhabitants do live by faith there, much as they do here. To have Christ, or God the Father there defeats the purpose of the Spirit world.
Yes, the Holy Ghost and Light of Christ can be felt in the Spirit world by the repentant, but that's all. I suspect even prayer is present in the Spirit world.
(One's knowledge of life before birth also ISN'T automatically restored in the Spirit world, despite some past teachings that it is.)
This myth of meeting your make right after death keeps being perpetuated most often in the LDS Church during funerals -- he or she was "called home" or they will "meet their maker."
This incorrect doctrine may make people feel "comforted," but it simply isn't accurate.
This myth is also present in some oversimplified LDS artwork (see the above photograph from a St. George, Utah funeral home).
Perhaps only those who have been dead briefly and then returned to life have ever been to the Spirit world before. So, how can one correctly say "they were called home" when they have never been there before?
No deceased person likely meets Christ until they are at the judgment bar, or after they are resurrected.