The Gospel of Jesus Christ Teaches the Reality of Our Premortal Existence

“The Gospel of Jesus Christ Teaches the Reality of Our Premortal Existence,” Ensign, June 2008, 67

Visiting Teaching Message

The Gospel of Jesus Christ Teaches the Reality of Our Premortal Existence

Teach the scriptures and statements that meet the needs of the sisters you visit. Bear testimony of the doctrine. Invite those you teach to share what they have felt and learned.

What Are We Taught about the Premortal Existence?

Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “We lived in the presence of God our Holy Father and His Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, in a premortal existence. … We were told:

“ ‘We will make an earth whereon these may dwell;

“ ‘And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;

“ ‘And they who keep their first estate [that is, to be obedient in the premortal existence] shall be added upon; … and they who keep their second estate [that is, to be obedient during mortal life] shall have glory added upon their heads for ever and ever’ [Abraham 3:24–26]. …

“… You were taught and prepared for the circumstances you would personally encounter in mortality. … Your memory of premortal life would be kept from you to assure that it would be a valid test, but there would be guidance given to show you how to live. Our Father’s plan for salvation in this life with the opportunity of returning to Him would be called the gospel of Jesus Christ” (“Truth Restored,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2005, 78–79).

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “In a premortal council at which we were all present, [Jesus Christ] accepted our Father’s great plan of happiness for His children and was chosen by the Father to give effect to that plan. He led the forces of good against those of Satan and his followers in a battle for the souls of men that began before this world was formed. That conflict continues today. We were all on the side of Jesus then. We are on the side of Jesus today” (“Christians in Belief and Action,” Ensign, Nov. 1996, 71).

Why Is It Essential to Understand the Premortal Existence?

Julie B. Beck, Relief Society general president: “Women have distinct assignments given to them from before the foundation of the world. … We know that in the great premortal conflict we sided with our Savior, Jesus Christ, to preserve our potential to belong to eternal families. We know we are daughters of God, and we know what we are to do. … We believe in the formation of eternal families. … We know that the commandment to multiply and replenish the earth remains in force. … We have faith that with the Lord’s help we can be successful in rearing and teaching children. These are vital responsibilities in the plan of happiness, and when women embrace those roles with all their hearts, they are happy!” (“What Latter-day Saint Women Do Best: Stand Strong and Immovable,” Liahona and Ensign, Nov. 2007, 110).

President Spencer W. Kimball (1895–1985): “If we looked at mortality as the whole of existence, then pain, sorrow, failure, and short life would be calamity. But if we look upon life as an eternal thing stretching far into the premortal past and on into the eternal post-death future, then all happenings may be put in proper perspective” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Spencer W. Kimball [2006], 15).

For additional study, see Jeremiah 1:4–5; D&C 138:55–56.

The Grand Council, by Robert T. Barrett; border: detail from Jesus Christ, by Harry Anderson