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Question

 

Hey Gramps,

I have always wondered and more recently others have asked me the same question. What happens if someone is unworthy and blesses/passes the sacrament? Or when giving a blessing?  Do the receivers of the blessings lose out? Or is the greater sin placed upon the unworthy one and the blessing still works as intended? Same thought with someone who gets sealed while unworthy. Does that mean the sealing wasn’t valid? I would love any thoughts you have!

Thanks,

Nathan

 

Answer

 

Nathan,

That is an understandable question. With any work that is performed through the priesthood (particularly ordinances and blessings) there are two components always involved: faith and worthiness. With ordinances and blessings then we have the faith and worthiness of the giver, and the faith and worthiness of the receiver. An easy question to ask ourselves, would a just God deny his blessings if a worthy son or daughter receives the ordinance or blessing from someone who is unworthy? The easy answer would be, no. It would not be just to deny the receiver of blessings who acts in faith and worthiness to receive the blessings from God.

When a son or daughter of God comes to Church they aren’t there to judge the intent of heart of the other members. The only person in the ward who has been granted that privilege is the bishop of the ward, and even the bishop isn’t looking out in the congregation to see who isn’t unworthy. Each of us members attend church in good faith in order to receive the promise blessings of the gospel. When a young man, who isn’t worthy, blesses or passes the sacrament the Lord isn’t going to remove the blessing of his atonement if the person receiving the sacrament is faithful and worthy.

The same principle and concept applies for all worthy and faithful members who are receiving ordinances, as it isn’t their place to judge the worthiness of the giver. They are simply there to receive the ordinance. Will the giver’s worthiness affect the Spirit of the ordinance. Yes, but it will not affect the work being done.

Now, if the people receiving the ordinance are unworthy that is a different story. One time going through the temple performing work for the dead in a sealing room one of the sealers said the following, “The hardest experience as a sealer is when a young couple comes to be sealed and you know they aren’t worthy. The reason why you know is because the Spirit did not seal the ordinance. The work is performed. The sealing from heaven is removed. And you know if they don’t repent then the ordinance will have no affect in the next life.” The sealer then mentioned you just hope they repent so that the Spirit can seal the ordinance. They would not have to redo the work as the work is already performed. They would simply need to repent.

As receivers, the most important thing is our own faithfulness and worthiness. As givers (if we are the ones performing or administering the ordinance or blessing) we should be concerned about our worthiness. The Lord doesn’t withhold his blessings, his ordinances, from the receiver if they are worthy.

 

Gramps

 

 

 

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