Zelophehad’s Daughters

Inconclusive Musings on Gays in Eternity

Posted by Kiskilili

Surgeon General’s Warning: This post may result in skyrocketing blood pressure. For those who find theological speculation distasteful, please, stop reading immediately. Show some self-discipline and click away.

Are there gays in heaven?

The answer is obvious, right? Of course not! Heavenly beings, like the creatures on Noah’s Ark, come in opposite-sexed pairs. Or maybe they come in prides. Either way, there’s simply no possibility in Mormon thought for accommodating same-sex partners into this picture. Is there? And if not, what happens to gays in the next life?

I’ve seen it suggested that gays who are faithful and celibate in this life will be given the opportunity to become ministering angels in the life to come. While I can neither confirm nor deny the veracity of this speculation, it strikes me as profoundly troubling on a number of fronts: unlike any other group, gays would be systematically excluded from exaltation, regardless of their level of faithfulness and in spite of the fact that they’re asked to sacrifice more for the gospel than heterosexuals. Why would the Atonement stop short of providing a way to usher gays into heaven with everyone else? This position ends up sounding like a form of pseudo-Calvinism in which heterosexual tendencies are a manifestation of inscrutable divine providence. It’s awfully convenient to short-circuit our moral reasoning process and our obligations to our fellow-beings by supposing what we see in others’ eyes is God’s mote, put there to signal their status as reprobates, but it also irresponsibly promotes chariness and insensitivity based on religiously unverified assumptions.

An alternate speculation holds that gays will indeed be allowed into those celestial realms, like everyone else. Just like everyone else, that is: they’ll be turned into straights. This idea–let’s call it the Transmogrification Hypothesis–holds more promise than the previous one: gays would not be eternally cut off from family ties or automatically turned away. However, neither is this model entirely free of its own disturbing aspects. As Lynnette has pointed out to me, women who find polygamy distasteful often recoil at the thought that God would forcibly recalibrate their sexual preferences in the next life in order to make them enjoy life as a virtual concubine. It would be a potential violation of one’s identity and experience of oneself, and turning gays into straights would be no different. Exaltation of families is meaningful to us for its very particularities; we place implicit value on particular identities by sealing families together rather than sealing everyone into an amorphous blissful blob. Some continuity between our experience of our particular selves in this life and the next is necessary in order for exaltation to have palpable meaning for us earthly mortals. If that line is ruptured–if I’m instantaneously transformed into a being I don’t recognize, or someone I love is–exaltation loses its gloss. Maybe God will twinkle me into someone who loves being subordinate to men. But I wonder why he didn’t just transform me into someone who hated sinning before I was born.

On the other hand, surely our opportunities for change, and thus the elasticity of our identities, will be expanded, perhaps enabling people themselves to change in ways they cannot in this life. Will gays turn themselves into straights in order to qualify to step through that pearly portal? Will they be required to?

(As a related issue, I wonder: are all distinctions eventually erased in the celestial sphere? (Except that all-important distinction of “gender,” which, one could argue, ceases to exist as women become increasingly invisible.) Where there are certainly sundry ways of sinning, is there a single way of behaving perfectly? What sorts variety does heaven allow–or does the very instability of variety (outside gender) threaten the fabric of perfection? Is heaven monochromatic?)

Even if both these options entail potentially troubling assumptions, the alternative–exalted homosexuals–is surely untenable in Mormon doctrine, is it not? The primary responsibility of deity is to reproduce, and then rear, offspring; gays can play no role in this natural propogation of divine generations, so they must be excluded. Their relationships are biological dead ends, unratified by God for pratical reasons: they are unratified by reproduction’s mandate.

Looked at from the other side, gays are invalid because God is the archetypal human. And if he’s not straight, where did we all come from? Christopher Bigelow makes this case in the latest issue of Sunstone:

“In order for same-sex marriage to be accepted by Mormons, we would need to become convinced that God himself could conceivably engage in such a union, including its sexual implications. To put it more bluntly, unless God himself could be gay and still be God, then there’s no room for homosexuality in Mormon doctrine.”

God is our model for life as an exalted, deified being, and anything outside his repertoire of activities is, in the eternal sense, illicit. It will probably surprise no one but the baffled passerby that my first thought upon reading this is as follows:

“Unless God himself could be a woman and still be God, then there’s no room for women in Mormon doctrine.”

Of course, we’ve weaseled around this problem through straightforward logical conjecture, falling back on the necessity of celestial reproduction: even if they’re not “God,” exactly, there must be women in heaven, lest reason gape, aghast. Otherwise how did we ever move past the stage of being twinkles in Heavenly Father’s eye? Although we have no unequivocal scriptural evidence for Heavenly Mother, no interaction with her, and only tentative, shadowy pronouncements about her, her silhouette nevertheless hovers persistently at the periphery of the celestial landscape. The very same logic that expels gays insists on her presence. (Observe, though, that with a near-absent and virtually unmentionable Heavenly Mother, Heavenly Father’s own sexual orientation is only tenuously articulated in our doctrine.)

But given this doctrine, coupled with our related practice of sealing husbands and wives for eternity, shouldn’t we expect our Godhead to consist of an exalted heterosexual male and his wife (or wives)? No one attains exaltation except as a couple. So how did it come about that we’re worshiping a Godhead comprised of three males and zero females!? We assume Heavenly Father is married. Surely, given our requirements, if Jesus didn’t marry in this life he did after death? (Has anyone done his temple work?) But who even invited the Holy Ghost!? Not only did he fail to show up on the arm of a significant other (is there a Holy Ghostess in the house?), he’s not even complying with the strict heavenly dress code: he’s naked of a body!

Exaltation, we learn in Gospel Essentials and Primary, is the final culmination of a process entailing coming to earth, getting a body, losing it, getting it back, living with God, and becoming like God. How exactly did the Holy Ghost circumvent one (or all) of these steps and still become a God?

Logically, in Mormon doctrine, just as there are no gays in that celestial world, there is no Holy Ghost. Neither of them fits the picture. On the other hand, Heavenly Mother, doctrinally, fits very well into the Godhead and yet was not invited.

(Some say her personality has been so absorbed into her husband’s she doesn’t need a separate invitation. But since all three of them behave completely in tandem anyway, if there are really four–or more–why not acknowledge those other members? Why was Heavenly Mother required to sacrifice her identity to God in a way that’s qualitatively different from, for example, Jesus, whom we still talk about as a separate member of the Godhead? The straightforward solution is that she is not a member of the Godhead.)

Some have attempted to resolve the discrepancy between our logical pantheon (Heavenly Father and Heavenly Mother) and our scriptural/revealed pantheon (Heavenly Father, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost) by suggesting Heavenly Mother is the Holy Ghost. While it at least acknowledges the incongruities of the picture, I think this only raises more problems than it solves. If corporality is so important to God’s plan, why does he deny it to exalted women? And why is the Holy Ghost referred to as a male? Similarly, we could solve two problems simultaneously by speculating that the Holy Ghost is gay–his role as an exalted being does not seem to entail biological reproduction, yet he’s nevertheless been apotheosized. Like other proposed solutions, this only raises its own set of problems and is, I think, ultimately unsatisfactory, but at least it illustrates the unnecessary rigidity of thought of those confidently excluding gays from the celestial sphere.

Or maybe it’s a mistake to conflate heaven (a place) with exaltation or divinity (a status)? Heavenly Mother attained the former but not necessarily the latter, where the Holy Ghost was awarded the latter without the former. If so, our model for life after death only grows more intricate and bizarre.

Over time, our view of heaven has undergone a series of tectonic shifts. The authors of the Hebrew Bible seemed to lack any conception at all of a paradisiacal realm after death. The authors of the Book of Mormon knew of only two tiers: heaven and hell. I learned in seminary that blacks would turn into whites on the other side (the teacher knew this how?!). Even without gays, our current vision of heaven is grossly inconsistent and riddled with interstices. If we cannot say what heaven definitively is, how can we say what it definitively is not?

I agree with Christepher Bigelow in that it certainly looks like there are no gays in the celestial realm. I just have less faith in the acuity of our spiritual telescope. Like Percival Lowell, who saw the blood vessels in his eyes reflected onto his telescope lens and believed he was looking at canals on Mars,  we probably all mix some of our own reflections, viewed through the glass darkly, when we construct our maps of eternity.

I don’t have the answer. But I doubt you do either.

68 Responses to “Inconclusive Musings on Gays in Eternity”

  1. 1.

    (Some say her personality has been so absorbed into her husband’s she doesn’t need a separate invitation. But since all three of them behave completely in tandem anyway, if there are really four–or more–why not acknowledge those other members? Why was Heavenly Mother required to sacrifice her identity to God in a way that’s qualitatively different from, for example, Jesus, whom we still talk about as a separate member of the Godhead? The straightforward solution is that she is not a member of the Godhead.)

    Isn’t there an idea that “God” is a couple? That if you believe HM is sacrificing her identity to “God”, then so is HF? (That’s the interpretation I’ve heard of this idea.)

    Dunno.

    I think a mistake made about the expections about exalted identity is that we think we have all the answers, already. As you point out, Over time, our view of heaven has undergone a series of tectonic shifts. Why can’t this continue? This works both ways of course. Our prophets and apostles gain increasing understanding and may have their understanding and teaching altered. But on the same token, our limited view of identity may not be correct either (just because we consider something abhorrent in this life doesn’t mean it may not still be the right answer).

  2. 2.

    I agree with your second paragraph, Queuno. As to whether “God” means a couple, if they’re absorbed in each other, not one into the other, why would it be forbidden to pray to Heavenly Mother, for example? Wouldn’t that be the same as praying to Heavenly Father? The very proscription on it rests implicitly on the idea that they’re separate.

  3. 3.

    Very well written and thought-out. One thing I think we have been missing in all these debates is a serious discussion about the nature of sexuality, both hetero and homo. The answers to these complex issues/questions aren’t simply an important aspect of these debates, they form the very heart and foundation. Is sexuality (in particular, homosexuality) a biological given or is it socially constructed? (The same with gender, a la Judith Butler). Or is there some of both (which is where I lean). I don’t think there is a definitive, universally accepted answer to any of these questions. Studies (so many of which have a socio-political agenda, whether generated by scholars and scientists who lean Right or Left) are ongoing and, it seems to me, inconclusive.

    But it is crucial to understand the parameters of the biological and social science surrounding the study of sexuality because it can shed light on both social and doctrinal issues. If sexuality is a wholly biological construction, what can we fairly say to a gay or lesbian person regarding their place in society? Biology would seem to preclude agency on a lot of levels. On the other hand, if sexuality is purely a social construct, is it possible–and just as importantly, is it moral and ethical–to change one’s social construction from one to the other? But just how much “freedom” does one have regarding his/her sexuality if socially and not biologically constructed? Social construction doesn’t entail complete autonomy. But is it as determinative as biology? These are questions we need to be asking more often and more intelligently. They affect the way we see and use our doctrine. For example, if sexuality is socially constructed, what could LDS doctrine have to say about socio-sexual construction in the pre-mortal life? Does it apply there? What about in the Hereafter? Can social construction continue? Are there good reasons for wanting to remain in our current mortal condition for all eternity? And what if it’s all biologically determinative? If it’s a mix, what can we then say or believe?

    As you say, it is unlikely there is an answer with how much culture is mixed into our doctrine. They are often difficult to separate, and we suffer, as a colleague of mine in a class on Mormon Theology wisely said, from the “fallacy of the native exegete.” It is sometimes difficult to see outside our own dark glass. But I believe the issues I have addressed above are important, and shape what we believe about classes of persons within a society as well as religious doctrines.

  4. 4.

    First off I would just like to say that I love all Mormons I think they’re a wonderful branch of Christianity and some of the most devoted and loyal subjects. And let me also say that homosexuality is disgusting. I like to make fun of gays and to laugh about how gay they are. But I have to say I dont understand where you getting all this information. Ive read the book of Mormon but I didnt see anything about most of the stuff your talking about are you getting your information from another source because I would like to read it. I think this was a very informative and well put together post however theres just a few things according to my opinion. I dont know if you can classify God as being just a Man so that theres no place for woman in Mormon theology. I dont think any of us can determine the true nature of Gods existence. Also why dont Mormons believe in the holy spirit. The holy spirit is just Jesus’s spirit come down to guide to the Lord. And Jesus’s bride is the church, Gods congregation of the Faithful Id really love to find out more about your theology because I find it fascinating. Also I dont think you can say that all gays dont get into heaven I dont think anyone can really determine the extent of God mercy and forgiveness even though they make us puke and make God puke but knows what he’ll do with em….

  5. 5.

    I suppose I can’t prove it, but #4 and his website look completely fake, as well as unbelievably poorly done. “I like to make fun of gays and to laugh about how gay they are?” Either you’re trying too hard or not hard enough, my friend. If you are in fact sincere, I suggest you moderate the shovelfuls of foot you are piling into your mouth. On the other hand, we must consider the possibility that you genuinely have subaverage cognitive functioning and simply cannot articulate your opinions any better. In which case I hope they are moderated out.

  6. 6.

    I prefer to give people the benefit of the doubt where possible, so here goes.

    Thanks for reading and participating, David. You’re right that most of what is unique to Mormonism is not found in the Book of Mormon. A little extra background material might be helpful:

    (a) In contrast to traditional Christianity, Mormons believe God is a physical man, with a wife. See D&C 130:22. God’s wife (Heavenly Mother) is rarely discussed.

    (b) You write that you “dont think any of us can determine the true nature of Gods existence.” Apophatic theology, with which you may be familiar, holds that God can only be understood in terms of what he is not, because he is himself ineffable and incomprehensible. Given (a) above, I think the Mormon God, a physical being like us who lives in our universe, is less incomprehensible than the traditional Christian God. However, to bring it back to the context of the post, I think it’s fair to say we have serious trouble imagining heaven and severe limitations on our knowledge.

    (c) Mormons do indeed believe in the Holy Ghost (although Mormon parlance favors this more archaic expression over “Holy Spirit”). Although a spirit, the Holy Ghost is a member of the Godhead and thus is, in Mormon thought, a God. I’m not denying his existence in this post but just pointing out it’s hard to explain.

    (d) I don’t know whether gays can get into heaven. I’d certainly like to hope they can, exactly, as you say, because I want to believe God is merciful and invested in people’s eternal happiness, and gays are as much his children, and as valued, as any of the rest of us. I’m heartened that we’re in agreement on this point. Personally, gays don’t make me puke, and I take exception to jokes about them. I hope you can understand why I’m editing out the link to your website, and I appreciate your not making a joke at anyone’s expense on our blog. Laughing at gays is, in my view, un-Christian. We try to keep it friendly to all sorts of people here, even if we disagree with them.

    If you’re interested in reading more about Mormonism, one helpful place to start might Mormon America.

    I hope this is helpful information and answers your questions!

  7. 7.

    President Kimball pointed to masturbation as a homosexual act and as such any one who has masturbated would be at least a little bit gay. I would propose most men that reach heaven will fit this category.

  8. 8.

    Wow, K. This is quite a detailed post.
    Leave it to you to find a feminist argument hiding behind the homosexual debate.
    As for the nature of the Godhead, I’ve been reading Margaret Starbird’s The Woman with the Alabaster Jar and it discusses some of these issues. (Have you read it?)
    She suggests that the Holy Spirit was considered feminine, which makes sense to me, but I see your concern about the physical body.
    Regarding whether or not gays would want to be turned gay or straight in heaven, I’d like to think it would be up to them.
    I’m sure there are gay people who wish they weren’t, and would like to be attracted to people of the opposite sex. I’m sure that’s not universally true, but maybe heaven is a lot more of what we want to make us happy and not God forcing us into anything.
    At least that’s what I hope.

  9. 9.

    JTB, thanks for a substantive comment. The questions you ask are all excellent and very relevant to the discussion. Like you, I wonder what sort of freedom we have in constructing our sexuality, and what factors are at play (both social and biological, as you say). And I really like that you’ve extended it both to the pre-mortal life–did our psychosexual development begin there?–as well as the post-mortal existence–what sort of “me” is it that returns to God, and how has that self been influenced by my mortal experience? Frankly I don’t even begin to understand the Mormon view of the self, spanning the pre- to the post-mortal existence, so I’m left with all sorts of questions and basically no answers. But thanks for asking them–I agree they need to be asked.

    The Church’s statements on the issue only confuse things, in my view. In the debate over SSM, the Church keeps pointing to the FamProc’s statement that “gender is eternal.” I don’t begin to know how to make sense of that. Gender in the sense that there will always be culturally constructed differences between the sexes, even in heaven–regardless what those differences are? In order to even make such statements relevant to SSM, we might suppose the essence of what the Church means by “gender” is being attracted to the opposite sex–but as you wonder, how much freedom do we have in that? And what’s the relationship between that and homosexuality? Gays aren’t confused about their “gender,” or why would they be attracted specifically to people of the same “gender”? I do suspect, though, that the heart of the Church’s resistance to homosexuality lies in a fear that gender roles will be dissolved. But the Church won’t even tell us what those gender roles are, or why, if they’re “eternal” (innate?), they would even need to be enforced. So the entire situation is, in a word, a mess.

  10. 10.

    I just have less faith in the acuity of our spiritual telescope.

    That pretty much sums it up for me. Given how many different marriage iterations we have had in the Church over the last 180 years (monogamy, dynasty marriage, communal / inter-marriage sealing, polygamy, monogamy again, the constant current of post-mortal polygamy of some sort), I have no clue what the Celestial Kingdom will look like. None whatsoever. No idea. Blank slate.

    I believe, however, that homosexuals can make it to the Celestial Kingdom for two reasons:

    1) I agree with the current Church stance that homosexuality often is not chosen and often is deeply ingrained (to the point of being a fundamental mortal characteristic for many).

    2) I believe the Atonement of Jesus Christ covers the natural effects of the Fall – that we have been saved from those things we neither chose nor can control perfectly. (2nd Article of Faith) I know there are unchosen and deeply ingrained characteristics within myself which are such a part of me that I probably will not overcome them in this life. I believe I have a shot regardless, so I must grant that same shot to all.

    Summary: If homosexuals have no shot due to a natural inclination they did not choose, I have no shot either – for the exact same reason. I can’t accept that, even if I can accept the general counsel to abstain from homosexual activity. I understand the paradox of the last sentence, but I support teaching LOTS of ideals that I think can’t apply to all in every situation.

  11. 11.

    Oh, and the idea that sexual activity as we know it just must be part of heaven – so sexual orientation just must matter . . .

    I wish we would admit that we have NO clear revelation (really no revelation at all of substance) on how spirits are created. None. Why, then, do we assume it involves any kind of “sexual” activity at all? We just don’t know, and I wish we would stop speculating.

  12. 12.

    #7 Anon:

    President Kimball said that sometimes masturbation is the introduction to exhibitionism and homosexuality, not that masturbation in its essence is a homosexual act. See this . I’m not going to debate the veracity of his statement, simply point out that your comment is not entirely accurate.

    #9 Kiskilili:

    The Mormon view of the self has been historically ambiguous, and it all centers on what an “intelligence” is (something speculated on ad nauseum throughout Mormon history, including the Bloggernacle). Bruce R. McConkie, following Orson Pratt places emphasis that God is Creator in a more traditional sense. There has always existed some sort of amorphous mass of “intelligence” that is eternal, and from which God created our individual spirits. BH Roberts interpreted the word “intelligence” in D&C and some of JS’s teachings that intelligence is an eternally–without beginning or end–individuated, self-autonomous, self-directing, free “essence” capable of growth and enlargement. God’s creation of our “spirits” is thus presumably an enlargement of our individuated intelligences that have always existed. Each of us individually is as metaphysically necessary as God (meaning we cannot fail to exist from all eternity). What part does sexuality play in all this? Who knows. Is sexuality also an eternal attribute of intelligences, or did we “acquire” it at some point? If so, what sense does it make to say that it is eternal?

    I think that sometimes in LDS discourse the word “eternal” means something different from “without beginning or end” or “unending time.” I think sometimes we say something is “eternal” to refer to the fact that it will continue to exist after this life or that it existed before this life, but not necessarily that it “always existed.” For example, many times i have heard General Authorities and regular members refer to anything occurring after this life as “eternity,” as in, “in eternity things will be different.” But technically, by definition, every moment takes place “in eternity.” I wonder if this notion is not at play in ascribing eternity to gender, meaning that our gender will continue into the next life, or was a part of our pre-mortal lives, but not necessarily that gender has “always existed.”

  13. 13.

    Sorry, the link didn’t post. It’s here:

  14. 14.

    anon #7, 95% of men who achieve the CK will have that background, and the other 5% will be lying.

    K., part of the reason I favor gay marriage is that I see it as a possible way of keeping our gay brothers and sisters within the fold of the faith, rather than losing all but the most dedicated Ii.e., celibate). Personally, I would be happy to extend that to sealings and exaltation, but who knows whether such an idea will ever gain traction within Mormonism.

    My own feeling is that most Church pronouncements affecting blacks, women and gays are profoundly grounded in culture rather than honest to goodness revelation from God to man, so I’m quite willing to look at such pronouncements with a jaundiced eye.

    I just reread the Ed Kimball article on the priesthood revelation that was reprinted in the latest BYU Studies. And when I read that, I think “How could we have been so blind? That this was culturally constructed and not revelatory is so patently obvious!” I feel that the day will come when we’ll look back at our notions about women and gays with a similar sense of hindsight.

  15. 15.

    - The Holy Ghost can be a god without a physical body just like Jehovah, the pre-mortal Jesus, was a god without a physical body.

    - In one of the interviews (in the LDS newsroom) that Elder Oaks and another GA did a while back, Elder Oaks stated that homosexuality (he may have used the term “homosexual orientation” or “same sex attraction”) was a temporary condition, implying it would be “healed” or “fixed” in the spirit-world at some point prior to resurrection, just like any other physical or mental/emotional problem. So whether it’s genetically determined or has any other cause or origin, the condition would not exist for anyone post-resurrection.

  16. 16.

    Gays have no place in Mormon heaven(s.) Hence the prop. 8 debacle. My 1/2 cent.

  17. 17.

    Yeah, I don’t understand actually how Jesus got to be a God without a body either. Actually, I don’t understand why we need a Holy Ghost in Mormonism: God lives in our ontological neighborhood and is not compromised by movement/change in the world, so why can’t he just communicate with us by influencing our feelings? Also, the Holy Ghost didn’t get inducted into the Trinity until the period when Mormons believe Christianity was apostate. Was that nevertheless an inspired innovation? But all of this probably deserves its own post: Toward a Mormon Pneumatology.

    “Healing” homosexuality seems like the easiest solution in many ways, and it has some official endorsement, as you note. The trickiest thing about it, I think, like turning blacks into whites, is whether people want to be “healed”–whether that’s subjectively experienced by the individual as curative or as a violation. Obviously all of this, like everything else, is subject to drastic change after death.

  18. 18.

    I couldn’t stop watching the video…

  19. 19.

    I think we have to accept a lot of I don’t knows in Mormonism. This is clearly one of them. I am completely unclear of how eternity works but my understanding is we will have almost to be trained into eternity.

    I am also pretty aware of a lot of non-canonical teaching of what state man will be in after exaltation but I could not honestly say whether any of it can be taken as more than conjecture. We love speculation in this church, I think because we are generally more educated on average and so there is a lot of deep thinking that goes on.

    All this it is tinged by our personal and cultural perceptions. Rarely do I feel the need to get that far in. I am not convinced, as Kevin is, that at some point we will have some epiphany which will drive us to accept gay marriage as co-equal with traditional sealings. Then again I would also suspect that our current polemic against polygamy would be a big surprise to the pioneers.

    The fluidity of a gospel not hung to creeds means we can progress in different ways as time moves along. I remember the quote from Men in Black which says, “A person is smart, people are dumb… 1500 years ago everybody KNEW that the earth was the center of the universe, 500 years ago everybody KNEW the earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago you KNEW people were alone on this planet. Imagine what you will know tomorrow?”

  20. 20.

    I love that quote, Jon.

  21. 21.

    That’s a fun quote, but it goes both ways. I think the time will come when we’ll be terribly ashamed of our presentism–er, our past-presentism.

  22. 22.

    Yup – I’m sure it will surprise us in both ways.

  23. 23.

    Why do you assume those who don’t care for theological speculation must be Care Bears fans? [sigh] More ugly stereotyping.

  24. 24.

    Madhousewife, are you suggesting there are people out there who aren’t Care Bear fans!? If it’s true, it’s news to me! This is my favorite song in Care Bears II although I have to wonder whether Cheer Bear’s voice was modified post-production or whether she was snorting helium in order to speak that high . . .

  25. 25.

    Ray:

    I wish we would admit that we have NO clear revelation (really no revelation at all of substance) on how spirits are created. None. Why, then, do we assume it involves any kind of “sexual” activity at all? We just don’t know, and I wish we would stop speculating.

    This is a good point, and one that we should keep in mind. Most members of the Church assume that the creation of spirit children requires a male and female and some sort of “sexual” act just because that’s the way we do it here in earth when we make physical bodies.

    As far as we know, God created bodies for Adam and Eve without female assistance. Within a few decades we puny humans will be able to create life from two sperm or two egg cells. If a god (and possibly a human, in the near future) can create a body without an opposite-gender partner, why not a spirit?

    Of course this is every bit as speculative as the sexual theory, but it’s speculation that would allow for the exaltation of gay people.

  26. 26.

    I really like your thoughts about how Heavenly Mother fits (or doesn’t) into the Godhead. I think we care about this for two reasons.

    1-We are interested in what our relationship with the Godhead and with Heavenly Mother should be.
    2-We are interested in the role of exalted women.

    I think the second question gets really confusing if you start thinking about it. Say, a couple gets married in the temple, lives a faithful life and is exalted. What will their relationship be with their spiritual sons and daughters? If the man becomes exactly like Heavenly Father, will he become part of his own Godhead? I see a couple of possibilities here.

    1-Each exalted man will become a member of his own Godhead. Thus, his oldest son will become a Savior for his spiritual children and one of his children will become a Holy Ghost. The role of his wife in this scenario is unclear.

    2-Since the atonement is eternal, Christ’s suffering covered all the sins of everyone for eternity. However, what about the spirit children of the couple mentioned above? Will they worship their spirit father as well as Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost (but not our Heavenly Father)? Or will they worship their spiritual grandfather and his Godhead and not their spiritual father? Once again the role of the wife is unclear.

    3-The spiritual children of said couple will worship both of them (husband and wife). This makes more sense in the grand scheme of things. Spiritual children will all worship their spiritual parents. However this doesn’t fit with our current doctrine of worshiping the Godhead.

    We often say that we can become “just like God” but if you start thinking about it, it is unclear what that means. Do all men and women have the potential to become “just like God.” A lot of our current doctrine suggests that both men and women should strive to become like Heavenly Father and Jesus Chirst. Or do men have the potential to become like Heavenly Father and women have the potential to become like Heavenly Mother? If we are working towards different goals, why do women know so little about the goal they are working towards?

  27. 27.

    This position ends up sounding like a form of pseudo-Calvinism in which heterosexual tendencies are a manifestation of inscrutable divine providence.

    Some wisdom, finally.

  28. 28.

    Though most discussion of the Holy Ghost concludes that the Holy Ghost is in a pre-ressurection state rather than post-ressurection, without a body, and a number of speculations have concluded that the Holy Ghost is an office, filled by differening persons at different times.

    I don’t know, but the discussion loses something by not bringing in those thoughts.

  29. 29.

    Stephen: I don’t remember the source, but I recall reading that the Holy Ghost will be (among) the last to be born in the Millennium. If I recall correctly, it came from one of the Brethren during Brigham Young’s presidency. However, it’s not in anything current, so it probably carries no more weight than any other comments made by the Brethren as recorded in Journal of Discourses.

    Other than being a member of the Godhead, and his four major job functions (testifier, revelator, comforter, sanctifier), we don’t really know anything about the Holy Ghost or who he is.

  30. 30.

    Kiskilili,

    I want to thank you so very much for this post. I have been trying all weekend to find time to leave a comment but had to wait until this morning.

    As an active, gay LDS convert, your comments hit the mark EXACTLY on what makes it so difficult for me to remain true and faithful to the Church. I have no problem with my testimony of the Book of Mormon, the Prophet Joseph, and the Restoration. I have no problem in following President Monson. My biggest challenge is the attitude of the members and the lack of any understanding as to where gays and lesbians fit into the plan of salvation.

    As you stated above, the question has not been answered. I know that my feelings of attraction are very natural and I have no guilt about who I am. However, it has not always been so. I went through a period of tremendous sorrow and guilt over something I did not choose and could not change. That is, the most basic of feelings – the desire for companionship and for love.

    The easy answer is for everyone to tell us the feelings are chosen and, therefore, can be unchosen if the desire is strong enough. However, for the large majority of us, this is simply a lie.

    If we can picture God our Father as a married monogamous God or as a polygamist God, we cannot picture his as a gay God. It is this limitation that clouds the picture so greatly.

    I have also pondered upon the role of the Holy Ghost and where he fits into the picture. It is something that is so intriguing and mysterious.

    Until there is additional revelation on the question, we shall forever remain in the dark and the disconnect between how gays and lesbians live their lives and how they are viewed in terms of the restored gospel will grow larger. We will only be more demonized by our brothers and sisters in the gospel.

    I refuse to allow my access to the Temple and the blessings of the Holy Ghost to be nullified by romantic desires so I have chosen to live the “Law of Celibacy” which is much more strict than the “Law of Chastity” as it takes away all hope of companionship and allows for no comforting touch, cuddling, or that most famous of Mormon treats, the BYU “NCMO” with those to whom I am naturally attracted.

  31. 31.

    Thanks, Michael. I’m glad you appreciated the post. Obviously there are no easy answers, but I think too often we accept as a definitive solution (for example, that gays don’t fit into the plan of salvation) our standing assumptions born of the simple fact that until now we’d simply never given the issue much thought.

    Honestly, I’m not exactly sure why, at least in theory, gays couldn’t be sealed to each other, as Kevin Barney proposes above. If the early Church could tolerate “dynastic” sealings that weren’t intended to produce offspring, and if the concept of sealing is vague anyway, the point being to connect all of us to each other in some way, why not? I doubt the Church is headed down that avenue of reasoning, though.

    But I do think the Church needs to think through celibacy better. I was always taught in seminary that celibacy was a bizarre apostate practice God would never command that was evidence medieval monks had strayed from the Spirit. Now it appears the Church is preaching that some people–as in the Middle Ages?–are, effectively, called to a celibate life. If we’re serious about that, we should think through what its implications are and work harder to make room in the Church for celibacy as one valid path to salvation.

    Anyway, best wishes in your religious journey! You’re definitely not in an enviable position, and your commitment is certainly commendable.

  32. 32.

    Jon W
    Actually 500 years ago most people new the world was round. Sure there were some that thought the world was flat. There was a Harvard graduate that thought New Mexico was bordered by an ocean. (on TV) :) Oh, New Mexico is bordered with Arizona, Colorado, Texas and Mexico. No oceans. I am pointing this out because every time I use this as an example of “the dumbing down of America” someone says “Maybe the thought the gulf of Mexico is an ocean.”
    The church didn’t say homosexuality was bad, God did. He said it in the begining of humanity and I don’t recall Him changing His mind. But it has only been about 500 years. :)

  33. 33.

    IN the Bible it speaks of eunuchs for the kingdom of God’s sake. I wonder if homosexuals are the eunuchs-many have families and raise tolerant, loving human beings.

  34. 34.

    The holy ghost is a member of the GOdhead, and as such will have a companion- I think we will have to wait & see & continue to read the teachings of the prophets, ancient & modern, to know the truth.

  35. 35.

    K: it’s not just homosexuals, but all who remain unmarried for a variety of reasons (some temporary, some permanent) are expected to be celibate as part of living the law of chastity.

    I would dare say that there are far more heterosexual “permanent singles” in the church than homosexuals.

  36. 36.

    Dear Bookslinger,

    With all due respect, you are very mistaken. Heterosexual singles in the church live the “law of chastity”. Homosexual singles live the “law of celibacy”. There is a very big difference. Living the law of chastity does not require you to give up all hope of ever being united in love or companionship. It also does not preclude you from dating, snuggling, cuddling, holding hands, kissing, and, in general, seeking to find someone.

    On the other hand, the law of celibacy does not allow for any of these things. You must give up all hope of ever having love or companionship, you can never date those you are attracted to, and you cannot show any kind of physical affection during your lifetime that may lead to further feelings.

    Imagine you are a straight 25 year old woman who has not yet married and are returning home after graduation from BYU. Now imagine you are a gay 25 year old man who is cannot marry and are returning home after graduation from BYU.

    Which life still provides hope and a reason for living day to day? Which life takes away all hope and is a day to day struggle just to find meaning? Which one can bring a close friend to church and express affection in Sacrament meeting?

  37. 37.

    Kim,

    There are very strong reasons to believe that gay men and women are the eunuchs spoken of by the Saviour in Mathew 19 and in Isaiah 56. There is a young man that has thoroughly researched this. His website can be found here:

    http://www.well.com/~aquarius/

    It is the most reasoned approach to the history of eunuchs that I have found.

  38. 38.

    Isaiah 56
    4 For thus saith the Lord unto the eunuchs that keep my Sabbaths, and choose the things that please me, and take hold of my covenant;
    5 Even unto them will I give in mine house and within my walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off.

    You can have an everlasting name if you keep covenant, the Sabbaths and choose things that please me.

    You still have to take hold of the covenant even if you had been castrated and can‘t have children. I don’t think homosexuality is “choosing the things that please me”. That doesn’t change the fact that God calls homosexuality an abomination.

  39. 39.

    KingOfTexas, please take your rudeness somewhere else. Michael just explained how he’s making a huge sacrifice to remain active in the Church. Responding to his comments by repeatedly calling homosexuality an abomination–particularly when you’re clearly failing to even distinguish the desire from the act–is uncalled for.

    I’m also not all that convinced that God called homosexuality an abomination. Sure, it gets a few passing references in the Bible. But it’s clearly not an issue that was near the top of the priority list of its authors to address.

  40. 40.

    I don’t think homosexuality is “choosing the things that please me”.

    Is homosexuality a choice, then? Obviously homosexual sex is, but is sexual orientation a choice?

    That doesn’t change the fact that God calls homosexuality an abomination.

    There is no concept of “homosexuality” in the Bible. What’s condemned is homosexual sex. If “homosexuality” is not chosen by individuals, but is nevertheless an “abomination” to God, who exactly has committed the abomination? Has God?

    The church didn’t say homosexuality was bad, God did. He said it in the begining of humanity and I don’t recall Him changing His mind.

    If we’re going to be biblical literalists about homosexual sex, we may as well also point out that God does in fact apparently change his mind. See for example Exodus 32:7-14, in which God plans to destroy the people but Moses reigns him in.

  41. 41.

    Kiskilili, this is a fascinating post! I had wondered before about the question of sexual orientation in the next life, but you’ve thought through far more alternatives than I have.

    I particularly like your point that “if I’m instantaneously transformed into a being I don’t recognize, or someone I love is–exaltation loses its gloss,” which is an argument against so many convenient solutions where God changes our natures in this way or that so we’re happy with the afterlife. I wonder, though, don’t we already kind of believe that the Atonement will allow us to be perfected into the kind of beings that are quite different from how we are now? It doesn’t seem too much of a stretch to think that perhaps God could also tinker with us in extra ways to change our sexual orientation, make us like polygamy, etc. It’s not a comforting thought, but it seems to me that perhaps it’s not without precedent.

    But on to more rampant speculation: Just as there are more straight than gay people in this life, it seems like there is probably more a need for ministering angels than for gods in the next. Why shouldn’t God make gay people straight and exalt them to become gods, and then make straight people gay, and let them be ministering angels? Maybe the numbers would work out better. It would also be fairer to force everyone to suffer with a new sexual orientation.

    Or maybe we could all be asexual–remaining female or male, but losing our attraction for either sex. Since, as Ray pointed out, we really don’t know anything about the creation of spirits, why couldn’t this be a solution?

  42. 42.

    I’m also not all that convinced that God called homosexuality an abomination. Sure, it gets a few passing references in the Bible. But it’s clearly not an issue that was near the top of the priority list of its authors to address.

    What I’d like to know is, when the heck did we even start reading the book of Leviticus? Sure, it condemns male homosexual sex in unequivocal terms, but it also condemns wearing clothing of mixed materials (see Leviticus 19:19).

  43. 43.

    But on to more rampant speculation: Just as there are more straight than gay people in this life, it seems like there is probably more a need for ministering angels than for gods in the next. Why shouldn’t God make gay people straight and exalt them to become gods, and then make straight people gay, and let them be ministering angels? Maybe the numbers would work out better. It would also be fairer to force everyone to suffer with a new sexual orientation.

    Ha–I love it!

    These are all good questions. I have no idea about anything, really, but why not ramble anyway? It’s true the Atonement allows people to change, but given the Mormon premium on agency, does it actually change those people or just give them more power to willfully change themselves? I’m sure Lynnette is more qualified than I am to weigh in on whether God will “save” people against their wills, whatever that salvation entails.

    An important unknown variable is whether gays will want to change in the next life, and (either way), why? One stereotype is that gay men tend to be more emotionally sensitive and expressive than straight men. Will they be asked to give up that part of their personalities? And why in heaven should they, if we have a God who weeps and mothers his flock? So even if gays become straight in terms of sexual attraction, might straights become more “gay” in personality?

    Which brings us back to the thorny topic of the parameters of approprate masculinity (and by extension femininity), in eternal view. Hmmm.

  44. 44.

    Ziff
    Michael isn’t sacrificing; he may suffer but he is doing the only thing he can do at this time. He is doing far more than most of us. You saying God only mentioning something a few times means it’s not important is silly.

  45. 45.

    KingOfTexas, you’re conflating God and the scriptures.

  46. 46.

    ziff, KingOfTexas is conflated. You should get a dictionary and give examples.

  47. 47.

    Re 41 and 43, that’s such a fascinating question. What does it mean, really, to say that the self is saved? Sometimes it gets framed as a kind of restoration, returning you to your true pristine identity, so to speak. But it’s also referred to as a radical change, a “new creation.” The problem is–if what is saved is this “new creation,” what happened to the old you? Was it saved, or was it just replaced by this new and improved version? It seems to me that, as Kiskilili points out, even if you talk about radical change (and in Christianity, I think you have to), you also have to assert some kind of continuity if you want salvation to be at all meaningful. Though that gets us into the murky waters of precisely what aspects of the self might be eternal or enduring–which becomes even more troublesome if, like me, you want to avoid conceptualizing the self as a static sort of “thing,” a reified essence.

    And I think a related problem, when we’re dealing with the question of homosexuality, is that of relationships. In addition to the problem of whether it would be a troubling violation of identity for God to reorient people’s sexuality, there’s the question of what happens to the relationships of gay couples in the eternities. I’m reminded of comments I’ve heard from more than one person who happens to be married to a non-LDS or inactive spouse that they aren’t too excited about any prospect of exaltation which involves dumping their spouse in favor of one who qualifies for celestial glory. I would image that gays might have a similar reaction to the suggestion that in the next life, they’ll get someone of the opposite sex to replace their current partner.

  48. 48.

    Lynette (47),

    I think the question of what changes in this regard can happen on the other side of the veil or on the other side of resurrection harkens back to whether homosexual sexual orientation is a “disorder” or not. It’s only been since 1973 when homosexuality was dropped from being considered a disorder by the American Psychiatric Association. It is no longer politcally correct to consider it a disorder, but most of the APA members did not go along with the decision of APA leadership back in 1973. Many psychs and counselors today still believe that environmental factors and certain distorted family relationships can influence sexual orientation. There is much more evidence pointing to environmental factors and family-relationship matters having an influence on sexual orientation than there is evidence for it having genetic origens. (Environmental factors observed include elevated hormone levels of the mother during pregnancy correlating to effiminate behavior of the sons.)

    Anyway, all inhabitants of all three kingdoms of glory will have all disorders, illnesses and injuries healed, regardless of whether they are physical, mental/emotional, or spiritual, and regardless of the origin, whether genetic, environmental, or the result of accident, or sin, or by choice on the part of the individual or on the part of another person.

    Everybody, even inhabitants of the Telestial, get healed of everything. Whether it’s cancer, Down’s Syndrome, congenital blindness or deafness, a missing hand or leg, schizophrenia, depression, whatever. Everybody gets resurrected to a perfected immortal body. The only difference is in the degree of glory, but even the inhabitants of the Telestial will be whole and complete.

    (And only those in the highest degree of the Celestial will be married on the other side of the resurrection.)

    One of the promises of the scriptures is that all things will be revealed (at various points in time) prior to the final judgement (the last day of the Millennium). Not just to the souls still living in mortality, but to all children of God regardless of their state, location, and final destination.

    From that, I deduce that all necessary information of what is right or good will be made known to everyone. Therefore, everyone will not only have the opportunity to allow the healing power of the atonement and resurrection to apply to them, everyone will have the desire (based on revealed knowledge of what is good and right) to have the healing power of the atonement/resurrection apply to them.

    When “every knee shal bow, and every tongue confess…”, then apparently everyone will also know what is good and right in the eternal perspective.

    Since only the exalted ones are married, it might be said that among everyone else there won’t be any “sexual orientation” at all, since they’ll all be living singly and separately. Still men and women, since gender is eternal. But sex, and therefore sexual orientation, will be moot or non-existent among everyone who is not exalted. There just won’t be any. No dating, no romantic love, no marriage, no husbands/wives, just people living “separately and singly“.

    Our preferences and prejudices here in mortality are temporal also, formed and framed in a fallen world.

    I think it was Brigham Young who said that crossing the veil, leaving mortality and arriving in the spirit world and seeing a whole new “world” (or plane of existence), by itself effectuates a huge attitude change in a person.

  49. 49.

    Our preferences and prejudices here in mortality are temporal also, formed and framed in a fallen world.

    Which is why God will likely not be relying on the human nosologies developed in any edition of the DSM when he sets out to define the norms for “wholeness” and then “heal” people accordingly. After all, the earlier incarnations of the DSM that pathologized homosexuality also pathologized religious behavior.

  50. 50.

    Bookslinger, you have a gift for conjecture, and it’s clear you think that homosexuality is a disorder that needs to be healed.

    I’m not going to say if I agree with you or not. Just wanted you to know that your opinion comes through clearly.

  51. 51.

    J & K: It’s interesting that “whatever everyone knows” is that homosexuals are born that way, and much press seems to be given to people who claim they were aware of their same-sex attraction at a young age. Yet in my social circles and those of some friends, we’ve observed a common (though not exclusive or universal ) factor that also likely had a determinative effect, that of childhood sexual abuse.

    And, i’ve personally heard the stories of three young adult males who were targeted and “groomed” or “steered” into homosexual behavior. There’s a lot more to the homosexual culture and lifestyle than what is shown on “Will and Grace.” There are a lot of dirty secrets of the homosexual culture and lifestyle, things which are common and widespread, which are not spoken of in polite society, and are not mentioned in the press or entertainment media.

    There was a recent thread on FMH in which someone commented about several factors including “hard coded” and “soft coded” sexual orientation; that some would be hard-coded hetero- or homosexual regardless of outside factors; and others were soft-coded such that they could be influenced by external factors if those factors were present.

    I think too much of the current “common knowledge” about homosexuality is shaped and restricted by the desire to be politically correct; to the degree that many past studies and observations about causations and correlations of homosexuality have been incorrectly thrown out. Because a particular cause or group of causes is not universal, doesn’t mean they don’t apply in some, or even most cases.

    In the issues of legal rights, it shouldn’t matter why one is homosexual. But if one wants to muse or speculate on the eternal nature of sexual orientation, then I think the causes or origens of being attracted to the same sex are germane.

    (And in the case of social engineering, such as the SSM issue, I think causes and origens also need to be taken into consideration in order to consider the effect of such social engineering on future generations.)

    I’m sorry if the points I’ve brought up are uncomfortable. I admit that I do have a tendency to be bombastic. And perhaps I’ve hijacked the thread or taken it too far off original course.

    Perhaps if you know any long-time (age 55 or older) psychologists or CSW’s you might ask them whether they or many of their peers still believe things like childhood emotional development, family issues, relationships with parents, childhood sexual abuse, or even being “groomed/seduced” as a confused teen/young adult can factor into a person being homosexual.

  52. 52.

    37. Michael
    It seams to me if you continue as you are I’m sure you have a better chance than most. If we steal or lust after someone of the opposite sex (proper sinning) J do we just remember the sin or do we try to fence the pearly gates? I thought that was one of the biggies about having a body. There are things we can experience here and not in heaven. (without a body)

  53. 53.

    Since this post is about inconclusive musings, I will toss out one that I’ve had for a few years now.

    We teach that in the Celestial Kingdom there are three degrees, and that one must sealed to a(n opposite gendered?) spouse to attain the hightest.

    We are further taught that those who are otherwise Celestial, but do not enter into eternal marriage, will be in the Celestial Kingdom but not exalted to this highest degree.

    Since we further teach that no blessing will be denied because of lack of opportunity, it stands to reason that some Celestial beings will choose to not be sealed and will remain single and separate. Again, Celestial but not exalted. (For this sections inconclusive musing, lets assume that this is the 1% equivalent of Celestial people who are termed a-sexual in today’s parlance).

    So, first off, we have one level of the Celestial Kingdom for sealed couples. We have another level for those who choose to not be sealed to someone else.

    So, what is the remaining level of the Celestial Kingdom for? If it is the case that at least two levels are defined by the interpersonal relationship involved (or lack thereof), is it not (inconclusively) possible that the other “degree” of the Celestial Kingdom is for gays and lesbians. They are neither sealed in opposite-sex relationships, nor desiring to be single.

    Isn’t it possible that this otherwise enigmatic teaching from the Doctrine and Covenants actually points the way to reconciling the place of gays and lesbians in Eternity?

    Just some more inconclusive musings….

  54. 54.

    Kiskilili, I’m pretty sure we read Leviticus (and the rest) once every four years … though once you get out of it and into the New Testament What’s condemned is homosexual sex. — by married heterosexuals using it as a form of entertainment and birth control, for what that is worth.

    What does it mean, really, to say that the self is saved?

    I think about that, and have for years. Consider, just what happens when we are born to the personality and memories we have before birth? What returns after we die? It doesn’t seem like much. What is biology, what is environment, how much is me? I guess I’ve been wondering about related issues since I was eleven or so.

    The theme of recovered personality used to be a major theme in some literature genres back then (I’m almost 53 now) and hit me at a time it made me think, and I still do.

    More recently I’ve been dealing with a child who has Tourettes and all of the associated complications (including ADHD, OCD, etc.). Medication creates incredible transformations in her behavior and personality, for which I am grateful. I prefer to think of it as allowing her personality to emerge, but it is still dramatic.

    I think we may overemphasize the sexual and under-emphasize the charity and love that we need to feel for each other.

    http://mormonmatters.org/2008/01/23/polygamy-what-it-really-implies-part-two/ is my examination of part of that.

    It is easy to say we are just children, but most people I hear saying that really mean it only about others. It is easy to be forty and call a two year old a child. Or be fifty and think a twelve year old is a child.

    But seriously, how that that really differ when I say I’m 52 and there are those who are five hundred or a thousand years old? Everyone who died before Christ was born is to me as I am to that two year old.

    I may think I’m pretty bright and know a lot, but so does my eight year old. I have serious doubts about my own level of understanding and as to just how important many things are that I value in my fifties, just as I look back at things I valued in my twenties.

    I think we owe each other a good deal more love and kindness.

  55. 55.

    BTW, let me add these two links:

    http://www.usatoday.com/life/people/2008-11-12-elton-john_N.htm (which proves absolutely nothing)

    and

    http://www.massresistance.org/docs/events07/Michael_Glatze/index.html

    which shows that anomaly will always occur.

    I need to write a post about anomaly and what it may or may not mean.

  56. 56.

    [...] alternate plan of salvation for gay people (it’s not like there’s not room for it, see this interesting musing on eternal gender from ZD’s). What if God had a special role for gay people just as He (supposedly) has a special role for [...]

  57. 57.

    First off Kiskilili you must think of heaven as a home where you have set ground rules to keep it neat and orderly. Now let me ask you, would you allow crack heads , hookers, rapists and murders into your home in your desire to be inclusive and loving to all people, or would you require them to repent and be willing to follow your house rules, to prevent the kind of chaos that would enter into your home with this crowd. After all its your home and you make the rules. Should these types of people be allowed to dictate how they are going to enter in, or should you? Think of Gods kingdom in this regard. Secondly, I am married but many co-workers assume that I am single because I never talk about my wife. Why? Because so many of them defame their own spouses and other peoples spouses that I do not want them defaming mine. I am sure that with all the abuse God takes from us and because of his love for our Mother in Heaven, that he does not want us defaming her as we defame him and so is very tight lipped about her. When my kids berate or sass their mother I get pretty upset about it. I may swallow it being done to me sometimes, but I won’t allow them to do it to her. I believe that God keeps quiet about Heavenly Mother so that we don’t berate her. I believe this is done as a protection for her feelings sake. Knowing somewhat of the feminine feelings she would probably be very hurt if we disrespected her virtue and all the insults we could throw at it. Its pretty disgusting what we as a human race throw at the females we already know. The Holy Ghost is a male spirit and his time will come to get a body, but right now he has a mission to perform while yet in spirit as an influence of truth. Even Jesus had a mission to do while yet in spirit until it was his time to obtain a body. All of us must eventually conform to the Celestial house rules if we want to get there in a resurrected body and become like God. No exceptions. If you allow the crack heads and hookers etc. into your house as they currently are, well I am sure you know that answer. If the crack heads want to live in your house, I am sure you being the maker of your house rules will require them to throughly conform or they will not be allowed to enter to disrupt your idea of joy in your home.

  58. 58.

    In the pamphlet God loveth his Children, the First Presidency states that same sex attraction was not present on the life before and will not be present after this life. Another school of that out there is that people are not born gay and that same sex attraction can be diminshed or eliminated. Also, people who have same sex attraction and remain faithful and do no act on their desires will achieve full blessings in the eternities.
    http://www.evergreeninternational.org

  59. 59.

    in the life before

  60. 60.

    I think this is an interesting and potentially helpful idea, Jon Miranda. I guess I wonder, though, whether gays will necessarily want “full blessings” if it entails a fundamental shift in identity, in who they feel they are at their core. It’s an open question.

    N. G. Laing, based on the New Testament, I think Jesus would let the hookers in. The murderers will be out of a job in the immortal realm, and the crackheads will surely be in a different environment–can celestial bodies get high? The rapists are a big problem, though. (I’m a little afraid to ask what this has to do with the post, so let’s just say this conversation is 100% unrelated to the topic at hand.)

    When it comes to Heavenly Mother, I’m wondering why it’s even Heavenly Father’s choice what she does, and not her own. And it’s not a matter of shielding your wife from your coworkers, but from your own children. Would we find it acceptable in the Church if a mother abandoned her children–cut off all contact from them completely–because she was afraid they might insult her? Do you deny your children the opportunity to interact with their mother lest they’re not sufficiently respectful? This explanation sounds absurd to me.

  61. 61.

    First off Kiskilili, I did not say that hookers would not get in , I said that they would not get in under their present condition. A repentance of such a life is in order to qualify for entrance and as they conform to Celestial standard they then qualify for entrance. Jesus came to save us FROM our sins , not IN our sins.

    The main topic of the post I believe was that should gays be allowed to marry each other and still enter into the Celestial Kingdom as a gay couple. The answer is simple and straight forward by God himself, yet you continue to muse on it. Gay’s who don’t conform to Celestial law remain IN their sin and do not enter. God has set the Celestial rules for his own purpose and in order to enter in we must obey those Celestial rules .

    The trouble with todays world is that the politically correct can’t swallow Gods decision, which he alone is responsible for and therefore wish to remake God and his rules to fit their agenda, or idea of how things should be, as they see only through the glass darkly, while God sees through the glass clearly, seeing what we do not see.

    One thing I will say about God which is troubling to many equality for all seeking people, is that God is the greatest class and people divider in the worlds history. He divided the classes at the tower of babel through the giving of different languages, breaking the people up into different groups, language creating a barrier between the people, this all because of their wickedness. Many of our skin colors, which divide the people of the world were given by God according to scripture.

    In the next life Jesus said there are many mansions and that he would go to prepare a place for us according to our level of conformity to his law and it is conformity to his law that makes us all equal. Otherwise it is our own wickedness that brings about Gods class barriers, because he has said no unclean thing can dwell with him. The Celestial, the Terrestrial, the Telestial, are all class barrier kingdoms based on merit, though we may consider it unfair during our earthly view. Those who don’t make the Celestial will be SERVANTS of those who are worthy of a far more exceeding weight of glory. Now there’s a class distinction right there, servants versus those who aren’t.

    . Gay marriage is not in the same class as heterosexual marriage because God himself has said so and is not approved by him. What higher authority do you need. Barack Obamas authority doesn’t go high enough, neither does the Supreme Court, neither does the World Court. God has considered gay marriage inferior to straight marriage, his view being the Supreme View. Earthly straight marriage is considered inferior to Temple marriage in God’s eyes. The scriptures and the Prophets are before you, stop musing and start reading.

  62. 62.

    N.G. Laing, did you not read the first paragraph of the post?

    For those who find theological speculation distasteful, please, stop reading immediately.

    Since you’re clearly sure you have all the answers, might I suggest you might be happier somewhere else rather than trolling through our little blog of speculation?

  63. 63.

    Sorry , this debater didn’t mean to interrupt your speculative revere for political correctness. BY by.

  64. 64.

    I guess since I never received the memo from God outlining how marriage works in the hereafter (have we satisfactorily resolved how many Heavenly Mothers there are and what they’re up to?), I think much of the “doctrine” surrounding the status of gays in eternity is equally speculative, extrapolating from the information we do have and our assumptions. So I have no problem engaging in my own speculations.

  65. 65.

    This is exactly the kind of musing I muse. I can’t figure it out.

  66. 66.

    [...] There Another Approach” Kiskilili’s “Fathers are Irreplaceable” Kiskilili’s “Inconclusive musings on gays in eternity” LDS Philosophers two conflicting Paradigms series Lynnette’s “Repentance as a [...]

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    [...] Kiskilili’s “Inconclusive musings on gays in eternity” [...]

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    [...] his/her parts)? I think it’s already unpalatable enough that some folk* doctrine basically suggests a person will be changed at a fundamental level to “enjoy” the Celestial King… (this is a big deal for me for much of Christianity in general. “Losing myself” to gain [...]

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