1. Religion & Spirituality
You can opt-out at any time. Please refer to our privacy policy for contact information.

Discuss in my forum

Premortal Existence

By

The first part of the Plan of Salvation is the Premortal Existence, which is that we lived (as spirits) before we were born, in a place called the Pre-Existence (or heaven) with God, who is our Heavenly Father, and the father of our spirits. God presented to us his Plan of Salvation; a Savior was chosen; and Satan rebelled.

We Lived Before We Were Born:

Before we were born on the earth we existed as spirits and lived in a spirit world in the presence of God, our Eternal Father. We developed talents and gained knowledge. We created friendships and made promises. We also had our agency to choose.

First We Were Spirit Children of God:

Latter-day revelation teaches the eternal nature of spirits, that all things (including us) were first created spiritually, before physically:
"For I, the Lord God, created all things, of which I have spoken, spiritually, before they were naturally upon the face of the earth.... And I, the Lord God, had created all the children of men; and not yet a man to till the ground; for in heaven created I them" (Moses 3:5.)
Not only were we spirits before we were born on Earth, but our spirits are the literal offspring of God. He is the father of our spirits, which is why we call Him our Heavenly Father.

All Spirit is Matter:

Latter-day prophets have also revealed that all spirit is made of matter:
"There is no such thing as immaterial matter. All spirit is matter, but it is more fine or pure, and can only be discerned by purer eyes; We cannot see it; but when our bodies are purified we shall see that it is all matter" (D&C 131:7-8.)

We Are Children of God and We Lived With Him:

God, the Eternal Father, is literally the Father of our spirits; he is our Heavenly Father. He created us in His image from the intelligence (or spirit) that has existed from all eternity. God endowed each of us with our individual agency. During our premortal life we prepared ourselves for our earthly life.

God's Plan Was Presented:

Even though we were happy in our premortal life Our Father in Heaven knew that we would not be able to progress beyond a certain point unless we left His presence for a time. He knew we needed to be tested and learn to choose good over evil. He knew we needed to gain physical bodies to house our spirits. To help us accomplish these things he called us together in a Grand Council and presented His plan, the Plan of Salvation, also known as the Plan of Happiness, Plan of Redemption, and the Plan of Mercy.

A Savior Was Chosen:

Our Heavenly Father knew that for us to be tested we needed to be able to make choices between good and evil and that we would sometimes sin. In God's plan he needed to choose someone to be a savior, to atone for the sins of all mankind:
"And the Lord said: Whom shall I send? And one answered like unto the Son of Man: Here am I, send me. And another answered and said: Here am I, send me. And the Lord said: I will send the first" (Abraham 3:27.)
Jesus Christ was the first, who was chosen, and Lucifer was the second.

There Was a War:

Satan wanted God's glory and power. His plan was to force every soul to choose good by taking away our agency. But that would have defeated God's purpose- to test us.
"And I, the Lord God, spake unto Moses, saying: That Satan... is the same which was from the beginning, and he came before me, saying—Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor.

"But, behold, my Beloved Son, which was my Beloved and Chosen from the beginning, said unto me—Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever.
"Wherefore, because that Satan rebelled against me, and sought to destroy the agency of man, which I, the Lord God, had given him, and also, that I should give unto him mine own power... I caused that he should be cast down" (Moses 4:1-3.)
When Lucifer rebelled 1/3 of all God's spirit children followed him. The other 2/3 supported God and his plan. And there was a great war! Satan and his followers tried to take God's power and were thrust out of the presence of God, becoming the devil and his angels.

Our First and Second Estates:

Keeping our first estate was when we chose to support God and his plan, which was the 2/3 of his spirit children. Because of our righteousness all of us were blessed to:
  • Be born on the earth that God created
  • Receive a physical body to house our spirits
  • Live a mortal life and progress, and
  • Prove ourselves to see if we will keep our second estate: which is to choose good over evil.
Satan and his followers were denied temporal bodies and cannot progress, but they have not forgotten their choice in the pre-existence when they rebelled against God. Because they are miserable they seek to make each of us miserable as well by destroying our souls if they can. This means that every single person born on this earth are those who kept their "first estate." We are the 2/3 of Heavenly Father's children who supported his plan!

Continue reading to learn about the second part of the Plan of Salvation, The Creation, the Fall, and Birth, which involves the creation and fall of Adam and Eve.

Poll: Do you believe we lived before birth? Share your belief with us.

Don't forget to sign up for the Plan of Salvation E-Course!

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.