RESTORED DOCTRINES 8
WEDDINGS FOR THE DEAD
It is “From Egypt that the largest number of manuscripts on papyrus and parchment from the early Christian period have been found. One pottery jar contained fifty rolls of which one came into the hands of Cardinal Stefano Borgia and published in 1778…[from] upper Egypt…sixty miles south of Asyut in … Akhumim [Panopolis in Greek]… a great city…on a hill…are Egyptian tombs and a Christian cemetery …in the winter of 1886/1887 the French Archaeological Mission was excavating…found the tomb of a monk and in it …Greek manuscripts… including Greek text of the Book of Enoch…in 1895/1896 …Grenfell…Hunt…and …Branch of the Egypt Exploration Fund in London…started their excavations …in the [depression of] Fayum… at ancient Oxyrhynchus …found …sayings of Jesus…known from Cannonical Gospels and others previously unknown…for six seasons until 1907,…also purchased documents up until 1920…the remains of a Christian [s] Library… who may have perished about 303 AD under Diocletian [published] …in a series of volumes, [Until] the Oxyrhynchus Papyri (OP) …by Lobel in 1967.” (Finegan p. 110)
Continuing discoveries have been made including the great discovery of the Nag Hammadi, Coptic Documents, in 1946, many of these were listed and described by Finegan in 1969. (Finegan pp. 108-117)
THE BRIDECHAMBER -MARRIAGE
In the Church are ordinances which provides for the continuation of the family unit in eternity. “Celestial marriage is a holy and eternal ordinance, as an order of the priesthood, it has a name: the New and Everlasting Covenant of Marriage. Adam was the first one on this earth to enter into this type of union, and it has been the Lord’s order in all ages when the fulness of the gospel has been on earth, its importance in the Plan of salvation and exaltation cannot be overestimated. The most important things that any member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints ever does in this world are 1. To marry the right person, in the right place, by the right authority and 2. To keep the covenants made in connection with this holy and perfect order of matrimony-thus assuring the obedient persons of an inheritance of exaltation in the celestial kingdom.” (McConkie p. 118)
One of the ancient documents found in Egypt says: “The women is united to her husband in the bridal chamber… those who have been united in the bridal chamber shall no longer be separated.” (Foerster 11, p. 91) For Mormons marriage is for time and eternity, forever! “Some are in… the priesthood, these will able to enter within the veil with the high priest.”( Ibid p. 100)” “The older writings make frequent mention of the term maskna, ‘abode, temple’ a word that goes back to the Hebrew name of the tabernacle.” (Foerester p. 131) ‘The cult life runs its course…above all baptism…mass for the dead …consecration of priests…weddings...the most is important ceremonies and also the oldest are baptism and the ‘ascent of the soul’ ceremonies.” (Ibid p. 131) [See Restored Doctrine 9, of this series] “Nearly all ceremonies Including even the wedding ritual, are in some way associated with a rite which value for the souls of the dead.” (Foerster p. 133) Weddings? What are they doing? Note that ordinances for the dead are separate from weddings, just as they are for Mormons. Baptisms for the dead are generally only performed in the Temple, in a place especially built for baptisms. Nearly every chapel has a place to baptize for the living. But rivers, lakes, and springs have also been used. Anywhere there is water enough for immersion has been used.
We discussed the first two items of Saying 68 in Part 7 of this series. “The fifth item in Saying 68 is “a bride chamber, … Irenaeus [a church father] …describes the rites: for some of them prepare a bridechamber … and perform a mystical rite…with those who are being perfected…i.e. initiated, pronouncing certain invocations…and they affirm that it is a spiritual marriage…which is celebrated by them, after the likeness of the unions above.” (Finegen p. 285)
“in the gospel of Philip, [one of the Nag Hammadi books] the “bridechamber” seems to be very important…In Saying 68, however the Bridechamber [or sealing rooms] …stands in a sequence of items including baptism…the spiritual marriage simulates the unions above…the sacrament is intended to celebrate and prefigure on earth what is to be enjoyed in ultimate entry into the Pleroma [heavens], …in Saying 75 …entry into the kingdom is synonymous with entry into the bridal chamber. In Saying 76, although it is fragmentary, the bridechamber seems to be accorded the highest place among the sacraments for we read in part: “Baptism… is the holy house the holy of holies is the bridechamber…if anyone becomes a son of the bridechamber, he will receive the light. This light must be received in this place i.e. in this world. Otherwise it will not be possible to get it in the other place…He who does receive the light cannot be seen or detained by the hostile powers…he lives as a citizen in the world…Saying 77…where the “powers”…are explicitly mentioned: and Saying 106, … nor can anybody trouble … him even if he lives as a citizen …in the world….While we are in the world …it is fitting for us to acquire the resurrection [keys, sealings, or exaltation assurance] for ourselves…If one does not first receive the resurrection [sealings] and have “the baptism, the sign and the name,” (Foerester p.133) while he is alive, [hostile powers will detain him], he will not receive anything when he dies.” (Finegan 287)
Some excerpts from section 132 might emphasize this hard doctrine “D&C Section 132:7 …all covenants, contracts, bonds, obligations, oaths, vows, performances, connections, associations…not entered into and sealed by the Holy Spirit …that are not made to this end…for time and all eternity…have an end when men are dead. 14: … Whatever things are not by me shall be shaken and destroyed. 15: If a man marry him a wife in the world, and he marry her not by me nor by my word, and he covenant with her so long as he is in the world and she with him, their covenant and marriage are not of force when they are dead. 19: if a man marry a wife by my word…and it is sealed unto them [through the endowment and sealings] ... when they are out of the world …they shall pass by the angels and the gods which are set there to their exaltation and glory in all things…20: and they shall be gods…21: except ye abide my law ye cannot attain to this glory.” (D&C 132:14-37)
One should become fully aware of verses 4 to 37. (D&C 132:4-37) The ancient Sayings makes it quite clear the ancients were aware of these doctrines and covenants, the promises and conditions and bitter law if not acquired and lived in this world.
JESUS THE SON OF THE FATHER
“(Saying No, 82, Plate 119, 3-15) speaks of Jesus…and presents the Sonship quite literally, by saying that “the Farther of the All” united with the virgin…who came down…his body [Jesus]…which came into being on that day, came out of the bridal chamber…as one who came into being from the bridal chamber... here, since it is the “Father of the All” who acts, the bridal chamber, also called.... “the great bridal chamber” may be nothing else but the Pleroma [heaven] …itself.” (Finegan p. 280; 1 Ne. 11:13-20; 2 Ne. 17:14: D&C 93; Mosiah 3:8; Alma 2:4)
Without the Sealing Rooms (Bride Chambers) and the ordinances performed in the temple the LDS member has little assurance or expectation of celestial life, exhalation or Eternal Life.
FINEGAN, Jack. Hidden Records of the Life of Christ, Pilgrim Press, Philadelphia, 1969
FOERSTER, Werner, Gnosis 11, Coptic and Mandean Sources, Oxford at the Clarendon Press, 1974
MCCONKIE, Bruce R., Mormon Doctrine Bookcraft, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1966