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Hi Gramps!

I was reading about the first and second resurrections and I keep seeing that people will be resurrected based on the level of glory they are to receive.  If that’s already determined (what glory level a person will inherit) then what’s the point of continuing to do missionary work during the 1000 years?  Can your degree of glory change based on what happens during the millennium?   Can a person have a change of heart somewhere in there and get ‘promoted’ to a new level?






Dear Rebecca,

You seem to be under the mistaken perception that everyone in the Millennium will be a resurrected being.  That is not so.  Yes, anyone who is worthy of either celestial or terrestrial glory, who is already dead at the time of the Lord’s coming, will be resurrected.  But those who are alive at the Lord’s coming, who are worthy of those same two glories (or who are not found worthy of condemnation), will continue as mortals.  Therefore, missionary work on earth will focus on those who have not accepted the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

How do we know there will be mortals?  Many scriptures in the Doctrine & Covenants make this clear.  Doctrine & Covenants 88:95-96 describes how the Lord’s face will be revealed “And the saints that are upon the earth, who are alive, shall be quickened and be caught up to meet him.”  While this may sound like they’re going to be resurrected, I believe that in this case “quickened” means they are somehow changed into a state that will allow them to endure the Lord’s glory, but given the following scriptures, that cannot be the same as resurrection. (See also the footnote for verse 96.)

Doctrine & Covenants 45:57-58 talks about those who had “taken the Holy Spirit for their guide” living in the Millennium and their “children shall grow up without sin unto salvation”. And Doctrine & Covenants 63:51 describes how those children will grow up until they become old and die, but will not be buried.  Rather, they will be “changed in the twinkling of an eye”. (See also Doctrine & Covenants 101:23-34.)  Resurrected beings do not bear mortal children.  So the only way there can be mortal children is if mortal people live in the Millennium.

You may wish to study the Gospel Topics entry for the Millennium and Chapter 45: The Millennium in the Gospel Principles manual for more information.

As to your other question, everything that has been revealed on the subject of resurrection and the degrees of glory says that one cannot be “promoted” from one glory to another.  The glory with which one is resurrected is and will remain their final state for eternity.  Some scriptures to review on this topic include the following, speaking of those resurrected to the telestial glory:

Doctrine & Covenants 76:112 And they shall be servants of the Most High; but where God and Christ dwell they cannot come, worlds without end.

Note the finality of the statement.  Similarly, Doctrine & Covenants 131 talks about those who inherit the celestial kingdom, but not the highest degree thereof, in this way:

1 In the celestial glory there are three heavens or degrees;


2 And in order to obtain the highest, a man must enter into this order of the priesthood [meaning the new and everlasting covenant of marriage];


3 And if he does not, he cannot obtain it.


4 He may enter into the other, but that is the end of his kingdom; he cannot have an increase.

…and the wording in Doctrine & Covenants 132 is even more final:

16 Therefore, when they are out of the world they neither marry nor are given in marriage; but are appointed angels in heaven, which angels are ministering servants, to minister for those who are worthy of a far more, and an exceeding, and an eternal weight of glory.


17 For these angels did not abide my law; therefore, they cannot be enlarged, but remain separately and singly, without exaltation, in their saved condition, to all eternity; and from henceforth are not gods, but are angels of God forever and ever.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie was concerned enough about this teaching that he labeled it number five in his list of “The Seven Deadly Heresies“. If an apostle of the Lord rejected this idea so soundly, I think we would be wise not to embrace it, but instead, to do all we can in this life to come unto Christ and help others to do the same, doing all we have been taught is required to receive celestial glory.

I hope this answers your questions about missionary work in the Millennium and about the finality of our resurrected state.







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