D & C 132, part 3

Further on Section 132:
Joseph taught that we can’t expect to achieve the same glory as the ancients if we do not make a similar sacrifice as they did.  It’s all in Lecture 6 of the Lectures on Faith.  I’ve quoted that stuff in several books and won’t repeat it here.  If you don’t have a copy you should get one.  And read it.
Anyway, it is quite important to note the necessity of sacrifice to produce the kind of faith which saves.  Joseph’s explanation required us to sacrifice all things to be able to lay hold on saving faith.  Without the knowledge that we would give up everything, even our own lives if necessary, we cannot receive eternal life.  We have to trade this life for the next.  No trade, no exaltation.
So when a man or woman reaches the point where she/he can be tested, the Lord will supply a test to them to prove (to themselves) that they will sacrifice all things.  [The Lord already knows, but we don’t.  And it is OUR faith which is required to be tested.]
For most women, they make this kind of sacrifice when they marry.  They literally “give up their lives” and become a wife.  Even to the point  they surrender their prior name and become known by a new name and begin a new life.  The sacrifice for them is completed in childbirth, where they risk their life and then shed their blood to bring a new person into the world.  For women, therefore, this estate provides a ready-made opportunity for the development of this faith.  For men that is much different.  That is why we produce so few men worthy of preservation into the next life in an exalted state.
Joseph Smith succeeded in receiving his calling and election.  His promise of eternal life appears within Section 132.  That is no accident.  If the revelation is a series of communications, beginning in either 1829 or 1831, and continue through nearly the time of the recording in 1843, all of which are on the same subject, then they are all interrelated.
Joseph’s sealing authority is confirmed in verse 46 and his calling and election is confirmed in verse 49.  This would have been after Joseph had received the beginning of Section 132 and had actually begun to live it.  Meaning that Joseph was doing what he was commanded to do, and that in so doing he was sacrificing everything.  Even his own life was being sacrificed.  He was developing the faith necessary to know he would surrender everything to God by this principle.  Later, when he would go to Carthage and die, it was not as difficult for him to do because he had earlier lived a principle which proved to him that he would obey God at all costs.  Death under such circumstances was not a test, merely a confirmation of what Joseph already knew.
Plural marriage was so difficult for Joseph that it was THE means by which he advanced in faith to the point he knew he would surrender all things to God.  It was the key to his exaltation.  Not because plural wives are needed, but because of the difficult sacrifice this practice imposed upon him.
Now if that were true for Joseph, then we should not think the practice of plural marriage, with all its difficulty and sacrifice, something desirable to undertake. Nor should we be fooled into thinking that Joseph wanted or welcomed it. The revelation belies this notion.
Therefore I take it as a given that plural marriage was introduced as a test.  Not as a reward or as a holiday for Joseph Smith and his close associates.  It was a difficult, trying ordeal. 
Now there’s more to be said, so I’ll add another post at some point on this as well.

3 thoughts on “D & C 132, part 3

  1. I disagree. Polygamy is not even close to the sacrifice women make by pregnancy & giving birth & caring for babies & children or the sacrifice women make in even going along with polygamy when forced.

    Polygamy, or at least having multiple women, is the natural man’s carnel lustful desire that most all men have had throughout the history of the world & thus the men in many, if not most, societies have created that perk for themselves, even when not commanded by God to live it.

    The reality is, the more evil a man is the more women he usually desires to have. Polygamy is no sacrifice to most men, in fact God must command men to NOT DO IT unless he commands it, for it is so alluring to the carnel minds of men.

    To consider it a sacrifice for men, is like thinking it’s a sacrifice for children to eat candy.

    But, a rare ‘righteous men’ who has True Love for his wife, would be repulsed at the idea of polygamy, even more than his wife would be. He would rather die than live it or do anything to injure his wife’s feelings. He would not desire to look around at women & date & try to get women to marry him.

    If a righteous man was forced to live polygamy by his wife & God, he would let his wife do all the choosing & looking around, while he kept his eyes, mind & heart on his wife, like Abraham did.

    And Monogamy is actually the ‘grand test’ to see if a man could even be worthy of another wife. For men also ‘give up their life’ to the wife at the altar, just as women ‘give up their life’ to the man. Men must give the same sacrifice at marriage as women, even before women do. Not childbearing, but instead, total submission to the wife.

    The test for men is to see if he will continue to love & serve his wife the rest of his life & put her needs & desires & wishes 1st above his own & all else, no matter what.

    Having True Love for ‘one wife’ is the test a man must pass to recieve Exaltation, let alone become worthy of more than his one wife.

    But a man with True Love for his wife is so rare in this world, that most people never witness it, let alone pass the test of Monogamy & True Love. Thus, plural marriage will probably be rare in the Celestial Kingdom, at least for men.

  2. What?? Where do you live? You said, “a man with true love for his wife is so rare in this world, that most people never witness it..” That is a very sad statement and one with which I heartily disagree. I’m sorry that has been your experience.

  3. True Love is usually only visible & proven when it’s put to the test.

    It does seem rare to see men still show True Love when their wife hates them & does something like break her covenants to him & leave him & go off with some other man for years or maybe the rest of her life.

    Most every man will then just sadly move on & break his covenants to her too, by dating or remarrying. It’s just so hard for men to be alone. It’s hard for women too of course.

    It seems rare for a man to keep his covenants to his wife & wait for her to return & repent.

    It’s even rare to hear of righteous kind husbands who are staying faithful to & serving & ‘madly in love’ with their abusive, cold, unfaithful wife who stays with him.

    A righteous man, like Moroni, will also show such his love by always doing all he can to stand up for & protect ‘other women’ around him from the abuse, adultery & abandonment of their husbands & others, instead of just going along with it, like everyone does. That kind of man IS very rare.

    Do you know many men who do these things? I hope there are more out there than I have seen. I know they are out there but they do appear to be rare.

    Even the ‘belief’ in ‘True Love’ is very rare.

    How many would give their life, even one lonely day at a time, to wait for & eventually save their eternal marriage & wicked prodical spouse til they returned & repented, maybe not until the next life, if their spouse left & remarried someone else?

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