The following quotes come from the book Selections from Doctrines of Salvation: Sermons and Writings of Joseph Fielding Smith, authored by tenth President Joseph Fielding Smith. It compiled the three volumes of the 3-volume series “Doctrines of Salvation.” This was an employee gift by the First Presidency in 2001 and is a unique book, never before published. To visit the site with all of the books and quotes from these, go here.
Introduction: “Included are classic statements on such topics as the Godhead, the Atonement, premortality, marriage, salvation for the dead, the Second Coming, and the Millennium” (p. vii).
Adam and Eve
“The transgression of Adam did not involve sex sin as some falsely believe and teach. Adam and Eve were married by the Lord while they were yet immortal beings in the Garden of Eden and before death entered the world. [DS 1:114-15.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 85. Italics in original.)
“Gospel taught from beginning. These principles were taught to Adam after he was driven from the Garden of Eden, who repented and was baptized in water for the remission of his sins, and received the Holy Ghost (see Moses 6:51-68). . . .” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 109. Bold and ellipsis in original).
“God the Father married Adam and Eve. Marriage as established in the beginning was an eternal covenant. The first man and the first woman were not married until death should part them, for at that time death had not come into the world. The ceremony on that occasion was performed by the Eternal Father himself whose work endures forever” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 169-170. Bold in original).
“Adam received the holy priesthood and was commanded by the Lord to teach his children the principles of the gospel. Moreover, Adam was baptized for the remission of his sins, for the same principles by which men were saved in the beginning. In that day as many as repented and were baptized received the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands. Adam made all these things known to his sons and daughters (see Moses 5:11-15, 57-59; 6:1-9, 50-68; D&C 20:17-28). [DS 3:81-82.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 328).
Apostasy, The Great
“We believe that when he was on earth in his ministry, our Savior, Jesus Christ, established his Church upon eternal principles, fundamental to the salvation of mankind. We believe that following the death of the ancient apostles, these eternal principles were corrupted and became mixed with pagan philosophy. We believe that the essential ordinances of the gospel were changed and modified by man’s will and not by divine instruction . . . The church had become so corrupted and changed that it became necessary for the opening of the heavens, the coming of heavenly messengers, and a restoration of the primitive faith and divine authority. [DS 1:274.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 311. Ellipsis in original).
“To believe that the Lord damns little children because parents, in a thoughtless mood, fail to have them sprinkled or otherwise baptized, and therefore, should they die, they are forever damned. . . is a doctrine of the devil. There is no truth in it” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 541. Italics and ellipsis in original).
“Salvation of mentally deficient persons. Mentally deficient persons, those who are incompetent of understanding, are classed among those who are redeemed as little children through the atonement of our Redeemer. They need no baptism (see Moroni 8:22)” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 546. Bold and italics in original).
Baptism for the Dead
“Meridian Saints practiced baptism for dead. Salvation for the dead was understood in the days of the primitive Christian Church, and to some extent baptisms for the dead continued to be performed until A.D. 379, when the Council of Carthage forbade any longer the administration of this ordinance and ‘holy communion’ for the dead’” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 220. Bold in original.)
“We are one family. And we all have to be joined to that family. So it is not merely enough that we be baptized for our dead or for ourselves, but also we have to be sealed to our parents. We must have the parents sealed to their parents and so on, as far back as we can go, and eventually back to Adam. There will be cases where some of our ancestors will not be worthy and will drop out, but the links will have to be joined without them. So when the Prophet says we cannot be saved or exalted without our dead, he had this in mind (see Joseph Smith, Teachings, 337-38; D&C 128:15). Suppose we do not do any work for our ancestors. Then where are we? We are out on a limb. We leave ourselves on the side lines. We are not joined into this great family. We may be born under the covenant and thus belong to our parents, but where there are breaks in the lineage we are not united. [DS 2:173-74.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 226).
“Some hymns profane Deity. Even in some of the sacred hymns that are universally used, the frequent and familiar use of the name of the Lord enters, and spoils their use so far as we are concerned. A few hymns of this nature, with noble, uplifting thoughts, have found their way into the musical exercises of the Latter-day Saints. [DS 1:14)” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 13. Bold in original.)
Book of Mormon
“If the Lord had followed the thoughts of men and had commanded Joseph Smith to place the plates in some repository where they could have been inspected by the curious public, it would have led to endless disputations. Enemies of the Church would not have been convinced and would have contended most bitterly that the plates were spurious. No one could have read them for the characters engraved on them are unknown to the savants of the present age” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 282. Italics in original).
“Parental claim on children born under covenant. All children born under the covenant belong to their parents in eternity, but that does not mean that they, because of that birthright, will inherit celestial glory. The faith and faithfulness of fathers and mothers will not save disobedient children. Salvation is an individual matter, and if a person who has been born under the covenant rebels and denies the Lord, he will lose the blessings of exaltation. Every soul will be judged according to his works and the wicked cannot inherit eternal life. . . . When a man and a woman are married in the temple for time and all eternity and then separate, the children will go with the parent who is justified and who has kept the covenants. If neither of them has kept his covenants, the children may be taken away from both of them and given to somebody else, and that would be by virtue of being born under the covenant” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 180. Bold and italics in original. Ellipsis mine).
“All children saved in celestial kingdom. ‘And I also beheld that all children who die before they arrive at the years of accountability are saved in the celestial kingdom of heaven’ (D&C 137:10). . . . It does not make any difference whether it is a Catholic baby, a Protestant baby, or a Mohammedan baby: no matter whose baby it is, it is not responsible for original sin; it is not responsible for any sin; and the mercy of God claims it; and it is redeemed” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 543. Bold and italics in original. Ellipsis mine).
“Modern inventions part of fulness of times. Yet I maintain that had there been no restoration of the gospel, and no reorganization of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, there would have been no radio; there would have been no airplane, and there would not have been the wonderful discoveries in medicine, chemistry, electricity, and the many other things wherein the world has been benefited by such discoveries” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 249. Bold in original).
“Church membership alone will not save. We are not going to be saved in the kingdom of God just because our names are on the records of the Church. It will require more than that. We will have to have our names written in the Lamb’s Book of Life; that is the evidence we have kept the commandments. Every soul who will not keep the commandments shall have his name blotted out of that book” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 509. Bold and italics in original).
“Renew covenants in sacrament meeting. We have been called upon to commemorate this great event and to keep it in mind constantly. For this purpose we are called together once each week to partake of these emblems, witnessing that we do remember our Lord, that we are willing to take upon us his name, and that we will keep his commandments. This covenant we are called upon to renew each week, and we cannot retain the Spirit of the Lord if we do not consistently comply with this commandment” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 146. Bold and italics in original).
“Violation of covenant of sacrament. Again, I have wondered how members of the Church can go to the sacrament service and partake of these emblems, and make these solemn covenants, and then immediately after the close of the meeting go out to some place of amusement, to attend a picture show, a baseball game, or some resort, or to gather at some home to play cards” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 150. Bold in original).
“I say unto you the Lord is not bound, unless you keep the covenant. The Lord never breaks his covenant. When he makes a covenant with one of us, he will not break it. If it is going to be broken, we will break it. But when it is broken, he is under no obligation to give the blessing, and we shall not receive it. There are people who go into the house of the Lord and receive covenants which are based on faithfulness, who go out and are unfaithful, shall they not receive their reward? [DS 2:256-57.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 156. Italics in original).
“Lord has created many earths. The Lord never created anything for nothing, nor out of nothing. Everything has a place and was created for a purpose. Man was not created to be destroyed. This work has been going on forever. There never was a time when there was not an earth; never a time when there were not people on it, for that is the work of the Lord, and the heavens are innumerable, and so are the earths that have passed away to their exaltation and glory. As they pass away others take their places. This is not the only world (see Moses 1:29-35; 7:29; D&C 76:22-25; Hebrews 1:1-2).” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 48. Bold in original).
“Many earths inhabited by our brothers and sisters. We are not the only people that the Lord has created. We have brothers and sisters on other earths. They look like us because they, too, are the children of God and were created in his image, for they are also his offspring (see Moses 7:29-31, 36). His great work is to create earths and people them with his children who are called upon to pass through the mortal probation like unto this we are now in.” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 48-49. Bold in original).
“Devils denied mortal bodies. The punishment of Satan and the third of the host of heaven who followed him, was that they were denied the privilege of being born into this world and receiving mortal bodies. They did not keep their first estate and were denied the privilege of being born into this world and receiving mortal bodies. They did not keep their first estate and were denied the opportunity of eternal progression. The Lord cast them out into the earth, where they became the tempters of mankind—the devil and his angels” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines Salvation, p. 51. Bold in original).
“Adam and others helped in Creation. It is true that Adam helped to form this earth. He labored with our Savior Jesus Christ. I have a strong view or conviction that there were others also who assisted them. Perhaps Noah and Enoch; and why not Joseph Smith, and those who were appointed to be rulers before the earth was formed? We know that Jesus our Savior was a Spirit when this great work was done. He did all of these mighty works before he tabernacled in the flesh (see Abraham 3:24). [DS 1:74-75.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 60. Bold and italics in original).
“Endowments essential for exaltation hereafter. These blessings insure to us, through our faithfulness, the pearl of great price the Lord has offered us, for these are the greatest blessings we can receive in this life. It is a wonderful thing to come into the Church, but you cannot receive an exaltation until you have made covenants in the house of the Lord and received the keys and authorities that are there bestowed and which cannot be given in any other place on the earth today” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 153-154. Bold and italics in original.)
“Eternal life is the reward a man shall receive who is obedient to all the laws and covenants of the gospel, and who has, because of his faithfulness, been sanctified through the blood of Jesus Christ” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 464).
“What is eternal life? It is to have ‘a continuation of the seeds forever and ever’ (D&C 132:19). No one receives eternal life except those who receive the exaltation. Eternal life is the greatest gift of God; immortality is not” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 505. Italics in original).
“I realize that it must eventually come to pass in the case of those who gain the exaltation and become sons of God, that they must, in the eternities, reach the time when they will know all things. They must know mathematics; they must know all the principles of science; they must be prepared in all things—by learning, by study, by faith—to comprehend these principles of eternal truth, even as our Father in heaven comprehends them; and unless men will put themselves in harmony with him and his Spirit and seek the light which comes through that Spirit, they never will reach the goal of perfection in these things. It is, however, knowledge of the principles of the gospel that will save men in the kingdom of God. [DS 1:291-92.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 116-117. Italics in original.)
“Exalted beings belong to Church of the Firstborn. Those who gain exaltation in the celestial kingdom are those who are members of the Church of the Firstborn; in other words, those who keep all the commandments of the Lord (see D&C 76:54, 67, 71, 94-95, 102; 77:11; 78:21; 88:5; 93:22). There will be many who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who shall never become members of the Church of the Firstborn” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 533. Bold and italics in original).
“So being ordained an elder, or a high priest, or an apostle, or even President of the Church, is not the thing that brings the exaltation, but obedience to the laws and the ordinances and the covenants required of those who desire to become members of the Church of the Firstborn, as these are administered in the house of the Lord” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 533).
“The man who will not keep his commandments, the Lord will not exalt. The woman who rejects the light and refuses to abide by the doctrines of our Redeemer shall not be exalted. Those who will be exalted shall be crowned with glory, immortality, and eternal life in the presence of our Father” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 535).
“Mankind damned by ‘faith alone’ doctrine. Notwithstanding the apparently narrow construction of the Latter-day Saints pertaining to the scriptures—and we most emphatically declare that all men must obey these laws if they would be saved, excepting those who die without law (see Moroni 8:22), and therefore are not judged by law—we are broader and more liberal in our teachings than the believers in the faith-only theory of salvation” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 205. Bold in original).
“Outside of the celestial kingdom there is no family organization. That organization is reserved for those who are willing to abide in every covenant and every obligation which we are called upon to receive while we sojourn here in this mortal life” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 166. Italics in original).
Garden of Eden
“Now when Adam was in the Garden of Eden, he was not subject to death. There was no blood in his body and he could have remained there forever. This is true of all the other creations (see 2 Nephi 2:22). This statement may not be very pleasing to our evolutionists, but it is true. [DS 1:76-77.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 62. Italics in original).
“God is literally our Father. We are taught in the scripture that God is literally, and not in a figurative sense, our very Eternal Father. . . . the truth of the Fatherhood of God is emphatically pronounced by his Only Begotten Son, who declares that he is our brother and that we have the same Eternal Father. [DS 1:1.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 1-2. Bold in original, ellipsis mine).
“God is an exalted man. Some people are troubled over the statements of the Prophet Joseph Smith as found in the King Follett sermon delivered in Nauvoo in 1844. The matter that seems such a mystery is the statement that our Father in heaven at one time passed through a life and death and is an exalted man” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 9. Bold in original.).
“How God is from eternity to eternity. However, the thing that seems so puzzling is the statement that God is ‘the same yesterday, today, and forever’; that he is ‘from all eternity to all eternity.’ Well, is not this true, and is there any conflict with the thought that he has passed through the same states that we are destined to do? From eternity to eternity means from the spirit existence through the probation which we are in, and then back again to the eternal existence which will follow” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 11. Bold and italics in original).
“Sectarian controversy over grace and works. There are throughout the Christian world various opinions regarding what is necessary to bring about the salvation of men. Some there are who have accepted very literally, but without comprehending the meaning of it, the expression that was uttered by Paul to the Ephesians: ‘For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast’ (Ephesians 2:8-9). Those who accept that view as literally as it is recorded, without any reference to the context, disregard or reject the epistle of James which, apparently to them teaches a very different doctrine” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 130-131. Bold in original.)
“As a Spirit personage the Holy Ghost has size and dimension. He does not fill the immensity of space, and cannot be everywhere present in person at the same time” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 25. Italics in original).
“Avoid speculating on destiny of the Holy Ghost. The Holy Ghost is not a personage with a body of flesh and bones, and in this respect differs from the Father and the Son. The Holy Ghost is not a woman, as some have declared, and therefore is not the mother of Jesus Christ” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 26. Bold in original).
“It is a mistake, when we are called upon to confirm someone a member of the Church, to say, ‘Receive ye the gift of the Holy Ghost.’ We should say, ‘Receive the Holy Ghost.’ (I do not say “ye” because that is a plural pronoun.) That covers everything, and they get the gift. [DS 1:39-40.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 27).
“The omnipresent Holy Spirit. The Holy Ghost should not be confused with the Spirit which fills the immensity of space and which is everywhere present. This other Spirit is impersonal and has no size, nor dimension; it proceeds forth from the presence of the Father and the Son and is in all things. We should speak of the Holy Ghost as a personage as ‘he’ and this other Spirit as ‘it,’ although when we speak of the power or gift of the Holy Ghost we may properly say ‘it.’ [DS 1:49-50.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 36-37. Bold in original).
“Christ Worked Out His Own Salvation. Christ began mortality as men do. Our Savior was a God before he was born into this world, and he brought with him that same status when he came here. He was as much a God when he was born into the world as he was before. But as far as this life is concerned it appears that he had to start just as other children do and gain his knowledge line upon line” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 23. Bold in original).
“Christ not begotten of Holy Ghost. I believe firmly that Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God in the flesh. He taught this doctrine to his disciples (see John 3:18). He did not teach them that he was the Son of the Holy Ghost, but the Son of the Father. Truly, all things are done by the power of the Holy Ghost. It was through this power that Jesus was brought into this world, but not as the Son of the Holy Ghost, but the Son of God. . . . Christ was begotten of God. He was not born without the aid of Man, and that Man was God! [DS 1:18.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 15-16. Bold and italics in original. Ellipsis mine).
“Every person who embraces the gospel becomes of the house of Israel. In other words, they become members of the chosen lineage, or Abraham’s children through Isaac and Jacob unto whom the promises were made. The great majority of those who become members of the Church are literal descendants of Abraham through Ephraim, son of Joseph. Those who are not literal descendants of Abraham and Israel must become such, and when they are baptized and confirmed they are grafted into the tree and are entitled to all the rights and privileges as heirs (see Abraham 2:8-11; 3 Nephi 20:26-27; Joseph Smith, Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, sel. Joseph Fielding Smith , 149-50). . . . [DS 3:245-46.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 287. Italics in original. Ellipsis mine).
“It is clearly shown from these blessings and the interpretations given to the scriptures that the brethren from the beginning of the Church in these last days believed and taught that lineage is a matter of blood relationship. However, if a person should join the Church, and he is a pure Gentile, the Prophet has said the old blood would be purged out and he would be grafted into the house of Israel. In such a case the individual could be properly assigned to one of the tribes, probably to Ephraim. [DS 3:248-49.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 290. Italics in original).
“We must remember that there are some blessings which come to us through faithful membership in the Church. Those who are obedient, and who keep the covenants which the Lord requires of those who obtain exaltation, are to be throughout all eternity, the children of Abraham, while those who rebel against the truth will be cut off, just as were the Jews in the days of our Savior” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 292. Italics in original).
“Church stands or falls with Joseph Smith. Mormonism, as it is called must stand or fall on the story of Joseph Smith. He was either a prophet of God, divinely called, properly appointed and commissioned, or he was one of the biggest frauds this world has ever seen. There is no middle ground. If Joseph Smith was a deceiver, who wilfully attempted to mislead the people, then he should be exposed; his claims should be refuted, and his doctrines shown to be false, for the doctrines of an impostor cannot be made to harmonize in all particulars with divine truth. If his claims and declarations were built upon fraud and deceit, there would appear many errors and contradictions, which would be easy to detect. The doctrines of false teachers will not stand the test when tried by the accepted standards of measurement, the scriptures. [DS 1:188.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, pp. 252-253. Bold and italics in original).
“No salvation without accepting Joseph Smith. If Joseph Smith was verily a prophet, and if he told the when he said that he stood in the presence of angels sent from the Lord, and obtained keys of authority, and the commandment to organize the Church of Jesus Christ once again on the earth, then this knowledge is of the most vital importance to the entire world. No man can reject that testimony without incurring the most dreadful consequences, for he cannot enter the kingdom of God. It is, therefore, the duty of every man to investigate that he may weigh this matter carefully and know the truth [DS 1:189-90]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 254. Boldface and italics in original).
“Every attack has failed, whether that attack has been waged against Joseph Smith in person or against the Book of Mormon, which by the power of God he translated from ancient records, or against the revelations received by him personally from the Lord. No error in his doctrine has ever been shown. The organization effected by him through the blessing and guidance of the Lord harmonizes with the Church of Jesus Christ in former days [DS 1:190-191]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 255. Italics in original).
“Joseph Smith became an Apostle in 1820. In the spring of 1820, after the vision was given to Joseph Smith of the Father and the Son, he stood as the only witness among men who could testify with knowledge that God lives and Jesus Christ is verily his Son. In this knowledge he became a special witness for Christ, and thus an apostle before the priesthood had been restored” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 379. Bold and italics in original).
Kingdom of God
“Fulness of truth gained only through the Church. A man cannot receive the fullness of truth except in the kingdom of God, in other words, if you please, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. No man—no matter how great his education, no matter how much he studies in the things of the world, no matter what he does in the eternities to come—will ever reach the goal of perfection in truth or the fullness of light and understanding outside of the kingdom of God. And when I say the kingdom of God, I have reference to the celestial kingdom” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 122. Bold and italics in original).
“Church members may go to any kingdom. We have our agency and many, very, very many members of this Church, when they come to the judgment and are judged according to their works, are going to be consigned to the telestial kingdom; others to the terrestrial kingdom; because that is the law that they have willed to obey; and we are going to get our reward according to the law that we obey (see D&C 88:21-33)” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 520. Bold and italics in original).
“The celestial and terrestrial and telestial glories, I have heard compared to the wheels on a train. The second and third may, and will, reach the place where the first was, but the first will have moved on and will still be just the same distance in advance of them. This illustration is not true! The wheels do not run on the same track, and do not go in the same direction. The terrestrial and the telestial are limited in their powers of advancement, worlds without end. [DS 2:31-32.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 524. Italics in original).
“Lucifer became perdition by rebellion. If Lucifer had not known the effects of his rebellion, how would he ever become perdition? If he were ignorant, he could not have become perdition. He was not ignorant, and therefore he became perdition, and they who followed him were sons of perdition, because he and they sinned knowingly. They did what they did with their eyes open, and were in rebellion against God. However, Lucifer did not know all the purposes of the Father as we learn from the Pearl of Great Price, Moses 4:6. Therefore the Lord used Satan’s evil acts to accomplish his own purposes. [DS 2:225.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 462. Bold and italics in original).
“Saints commanded to marry for eternity. The Lord has commanded us, as it is recorded in the revelations, that marriage among members of the Church should be performed in his holy house, and not for time only, but from time and all eternity. Therefore, those who are satisfied to receive a ceremony for time only, uniting them for this life, and are content with that, are ignorant of this fundamental principle of the gospel and its consequences, or they are in rebellion against the commandments of the Lord . . . . It fills my heart with sadness when I see in the paper the name of a daughter or a son of members of this Church, and discover that she or he is going to have a ceremony and be married outside of the temple of the Lord, because I realize what it means, that they are cutting themselves off from exaltation in the kingdom of God (see D&C 124:37-42; 132). [DS 2:60.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 159. Bold and italics in original. Ellipsis mine.)
“No exaltation without marriage. Since marriage is ordained of God, and the man is not without the woman, neither the woman without the man in the Lord, there can be no exaltation to the fullness of the blessings of the celestial kingdom outside of the marriage relation” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 164. Bold and italics in original).
“Do not marry out of Church. For the reasons previously stated, it is a most serious error for a young man or a young woman to marry outside of the Church, for they cannot then be married with a promise of eternal union. No matter who should perform such a ceremony of marriage, it must be for time only, and then death will separate the contracting parties who will not have claim upon their children after they are dead” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 174. Bold in original).
“Marry right or not at all. I have heard President Joseph F. Smith say on several occasions that he would rather take his children one by one to the grave in their innocence and purity, knowing that they would come forth to inherit the fullness of celestial glory, than to have them marry outside of the Church, or even outside the temple of the Lord. Why should he have been so emphatic? Because he had perfect knowledge of what marriage, according to the law of the Lord, means; and because he knew the consequences attending the rejection of this covenant in the house of the Lord. For those who refuse to receive this ordinance, as the Lord ordained, cannot enter into the fullness of celestial glory” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 175. Bold in original).
“My advice is to our girls, if you cannot find a husband who would be true to his religion and have faith in the gospel of our Lord, it is better to abide in ‘single blessedness.’ It is better to suffer some denial in mortal life and receive life everlasting than to lose your salvation in the kingdom of God. Remember the Lord will make up to you in joy and eternal union more than you have temporarily lost if you will be true and faithful” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 177).
“Celestial marriage essential to exaltation. Another thing that we must not forget in this great plan of redemption and exaltation, is that a man must have a wife, and a woman a husband, to receive the fullness of exaltation. They must be sealed for time and for all eternity in a temple; then their union will last forever, and they cannot be separated because God has joined them together, as he taught the Pharisees (see Matthew 19:3-8)” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 535. Bold and italics in original).
“Nonmembers of Church during Millennium. Some members of the Church have an erroneous idea that when the millennium comes all the people are going to be swept off the earth except righteous members of the Church. That is not so. There will be millions of people, Catholics, Protestants, agnostics, Mohammedans, people of all classes, and of all beliefs, still permitted to remain upon the face of the earth, but they will be those who have lived clean lives, those who have been free from wickedness and corruption. All who belong, by virtue of their good lives, to the terrestrial order, as well as those who have kept the celestial law, will remain upon the face of the earth during the millennium” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 67. Bold in original).
“When Christ comes, the political kingdom will be given to the Church (see Daniel 7:27). The Lord is going to make an end to all nations; that means this nation as well as any other (see D&C 87:6; Revelation 11:15). The kingdom of God is the Church, but during the millennium, the multitudes upon the face of the earth who are not in the Church will have to be governed, and many of their officers, who will be elected, may not be members of the Church. [DS 1:229-30.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 302. Italics in original).
“Men damned by rejecting covenants. But when we get to thinking that one of the covenants belonging to the gospel of Jesus Christ is ‘the’ new and everlasting covenant, that is where we make a mistake, and I am going to point it out to you now. See how clearly and definitively the Lord speaks. I begin by reading verses 4 and 5, section 132:
‘For behold, I reveal unto you a new and an everlasting covenant; and if ye abide not that covenant, then are ye damned, for no one can reject this covenant and be permitted to enter into my glory. For all who will have a blessing at my hands shall abide the law which was appointed for that blessing, and the conditions thereof, as were instituted from before the foundations of the world.’
That applies to any covenant. It is not merely this one that the Lord is speaking of here that is going to bring upon us a condemnation if we violate it or refuse to receive it. That is true of every covenant that belongs to the gospel. Take for instance the covenant of baptism. If you will not have that covenant, you will be damned. If you will not have the covenant of repentance, you will be damned. If you will not take upon you the covenant of faith, you will be damned. And so it is with any covenant of the gospel.
The Lord says in section 84 of the Doctrine and Covenants that ‘we shall live by every word that proceedeth forth from the mouth of God’ (v. 44)—not by this word and that word and reject these others. We have got to accept every covenant that he gives us if we want exaltation. So the Lord is speaking here of introducing what he calls ‘a new and an everlasting covenant.’ Now mark what he says in verse 6: ‘And as pertaining to the new and everlasting covenant, it was instituted for the fulness of my glory; and he that receiveth a fulness thereof must and shall abide the law, or he shall be damned, saith the Lord God.’ [DS 1:156-57.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 106. Bold and italics in original).
“The Lord redeemed us with his blood; he gave us salvation, provided—and there is this condition which we must not forget—that we will keep his commandments and always remember him. If we will do that, then we shall be saved, while the ideas and the foolishness of men shall perish from the earth. . .” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 127. Ellipsis in original.)
“But remember the Lord says if we fail to keep his word, if we walk in the ways of the world, they will not pass us by, but we shall be visited with floods and with fire, with sword and with plague and destruction. We may escape these things through faithfulness. Israel of old might have escaped through faithfulness, but they refused to keep the commandments of the Lord and they were not saved (see Deuteronomy 28; 29; 30). Therefore I plead with you: Pay your tithing (see Malachi 3:7-12), keep the Word of Wisdom (see D&C 89:18-21), pray unto the Lord, honor him in all things by keeping his commandments, that his blessings may be poured out and that we may receive them in abundance (see D&C 59:7-24), and in humility we may walk before him and be entitled not only to the blessings that come to us in this mortal life, but to the blessings of eternal life, the greatest gift of God. [DS 3:34.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 422. Italics in original).
“Very gladly would the Lord give to everyone eternal life, but since that blessing can come only on merit—through the faithful performance of duty—only those who are worthy shall receive it. [DS 2:4-5.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 501).
“Complete obedience brings eternal life. But to be exalted one must keep the whole law. This is the great love he shows forth for his children: notwithstanding they sin and close their eyes against the truth, yet his arm is stretched out still, and he will feel after them and bring them back if they will keep his commandments; and if not, he will do for them just the best he can. . . the commandments of the Lord must be kept in all things. [DS 2:6.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 502. Bold and italics in original. Ellipsis mine.)
“The Father has promised through the Son that all that he has shall be given to those who are obedient to his commandments. They shall increase in knowledge, wisdom, and power, going from grace to grace, until the fullness of the perfect day shall burst upon them. They shall, through the glory and blessing of the Almighty, become creators. All power, and dominion, and might shall be given to them, and they shall be the only ones upon whom this great blessing shall be bestowed. All others, no matter how much learning, wisdom, and power, they may obtain, shall nevertheless be restricted in their several spheres, for they cannot attain to the fullness which is held in reserve for those who are permitted to pass by the angels and the gods who are set to guard the way to this great exaltation. [DS 2:35-36.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation pp. 527-528. Italics in original).
“Full obedience leads to joint-heirship. Now if we want to become heirs, joint-heirs with Jesus Christ, possessing the blessings of the kingdom, there is only one thing required of you and of me, and that is that we keep the whole law, not a part of it only. Do you think it would be fair, just, proper, for the Lord to say to us: ‘I will give unto you commandments; you may keep them if you will; you may be indifferent about the matter if you will; keep some, reject others; or, partially keep some; and I will punish you, but then I will make it up to you, and all will be well.’ [DS 2:37.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 528. Bold and italics in original).
“Full obedience leads to sonship. Now how are we going to become the sons of God and, of course, daughters as well? How is it done? Can we become the sons and heirs of our Eternal Father simply by being baptized for the remission of our sins after we have repented and have had faith, and have had hands laid upon us for the gift of the Holy Ghost, and have come into the Church? No, it takes more than that” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 531. Bold and italics in original).
“Ordinances performed without authority are invalid. I have no right, notwithstanding I belong to the Council of the Twelve, to baptize one of my own children without first going to the bishop in the ward where I live and getting his consent, because he holds the keys for that ward to which I belong as a member. I have never baptized any of my children except—and I have baptized nearly all of them as far as I could do and on their birthdays, too, when they were eight years old— I have gone to the bishop and gained his sanction to perform that ordinance and to confirm them members of the Church” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 370. Bold in original).
“Saints have knowledge of spirit life. The Latter-day Saints are the only people in the world, as far as my knowledge goes, who have a clear, distinct doctrine in regard to the questions: Where did we come from? Why are we here? And, Where are we going? I believe we are the only people in the world who believe in the pre-existence of the human family” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 43. Bold in original).
“We lived as spirit beings. We lived in the presence of God in the spirit before we came here. We desired to be like him, we saw him, we were in his presence. There is not a soul who has not seen both the Father and the Son, and in the spirit world we were in their presence (see D&C 88:47-50; Abraham 3:22-28).” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 43. Bold in original).
“Councils were held in premortal existence. In the pre-existence we dwelt in the presence of God our Father. When the time arrived for us to be advanced in the scale of our existence and pass through this mundane probation, councils were held and the spirit children were instructed in matters pertaining to conditions in mortal life, and the reason for such an existence. In the former life we were spirits. In order that we should advance and eventually gain the goal of perfection, it was made known that we would receive tabernacles of flesh and bones and have to pass through mortality where we would be tried and proved to see if we, by trial, would prepare ourselves for exaltation” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 44. Bold in original).
“Why no remembrance of first estate. This mortal existence is conclusion evidence that all who receive it kept their first estate . . . he [God] took away from us all knowledge of our spiritual existence and started us out afresh in the form of helpless infants, to grow and learn day by day” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 47. Bold in original. Ellipsis mine).
“Prophets chosen in premortal existence. In the far distant past before the foundations of this earth were laid, a grand council was held in heaven. At that council plans were perfected and an organization formed for the government of this earth during its mortal probation. Our Eternal Father, knowing the end from the beginning, chose from among the spirits those to be his rulers and prophets to assist in carrying through his eternal purposes on this earth in relation to the final destiny of men (see Abraham 3:22-28; Jeremiah 1:5; Titus 1:1-2). . . . [DS 1:184.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 150. Bold in original. Ellipsis mine).
“All men to be resurrected. No person who has lived and died on this earth will be denied the resurrection. Reason teaches this, and it is a simple matter of justice. Adam alone was responsible for death, and therefore the Lord does not lay this to the charge of any other person. Justice demands that no person who was not responsible for death shall be held responsible for it . . . . “(Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 477. Bold in original. Ellipsis mine).
“Children in the resurrection. When a baby dies, it goes back into the spirit world, and the spirit assumes its natural form as an adult, for we were all adults before we were born. When a child is raised in the resurrection, the spirit will enter the body and the body will be the same size as it was when the child died. It will then grow after the resurrection to full maturity to conform to the size of the spirit. If parents are righteous, they will have their children after the resurrection. Little children who die, whose parents are not worthy of an exaltation, will be adopted into the families of those who are worthy. [DS 2:56.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 547. Bold and italics in original).
“Revelation since day of Joseph Smith. The Presidents of the Church from the Prophet Joseph Smith until now have received revelations from the Lord for the guidance of his people. While all these revelations have not been placed in the Doctrine and Covenants, they are none the less true. Not all the revelations given to Joseph the Seer were placed in the Doctrine and Covenants in his day; we have added many of his revelations to that volume since his death. And there are others that have not been placed in it. Some of them were for the Church and not for the world, and therefore, are given only to the saints. But many revelations have been given to the Church since the death of Joseph Smith. Some of these have been published; some have not. It has been my privilege to read and handle a number of them that are still in the manuscript and have not as yet been given to the world for a wise purpose in the Lord. But they are on file and will be preserved. [DS 1:279-280.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 316. Bold and italics in original.).
“The President sole source of revelation for Church. There is but one at a time who holds the keys and the right to receive revelation for the Church, and that man is the President of the Church. And when the First Presidency is disorganized through the death of the President, then, according to revelation, the Twelve Apostles become the presiding quorum of the Church, and then, if the Lord has any revelations to give to his people, they will come through the proper channel—the President of the Twelve” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 320. Bold and italics in original.)
“Isolated scriptures give wrong impression. . . . It is wrong to take one passage of scripture and isolate it from all other teachings dealing with the same subject. We should bring together all that has been said by authority on the question” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 189. Bold in original. Ellipsis mine).
“‘Transgression’ not ‘sin’ of Adam. I never speak of the part Eve took in this fall as a sin, nor do I accuse Adam of a sin” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 84).
“If you would become a son or a daughter of God and an heir of the kingdom, then you must go to the house of the Lord and receive blessings which there can be obtained and which cannot be obtained elsewhere; and you must keep those commandments and those covenants to the end. . . . The ordinances of the temple, the endowment and sealings, pertain to exaltation in the celestial kingdom, where the sons and daughters are” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation p. 532. Italics and ellipsis in original).
“North and South America constitute land of Zion. . . . We accept the fact that the center place where the City New Jerusalem is to be built, is in Jackson County, Missouri. It was never the intention to substitute Utah or any other place for Jackson County. But we do hold that Zion, when reference is made to the land, is as broad as America, both North and South—all of it is Zion. . . . [DS 3:72.]” (Joseph Fielding Smith, Selections from Doctrines of Salvation, p. 450. Bold, italics, and ellipsis in original).
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