Why we can't remember the 'Pre-existence'?

by Rocky Hulse

October 2003

Mormonism teaches that we all lived in a pre-existent life before we were born on this earth. Is this doctrine taught in the Bible? NO! So this whole concept is outside the teachings of Christianity - it is in fact, anti-Christian!

For those who have been to our seminar, find the "Mormon Plan of Eternal Progression" chart that we handed out and review the left hand side. In the top left corner the chart begins with a globe labeled "Intelligences-Eternal Matter." Mormon doctrine believes that everyone who ever lived, or will ever live on this earth, always existed as 'pure intelligence'.

On the chart, the globe directly below "Intelligences-Eternal Matter" is labeled "Spirit World" and in between the two globes is inserted the statement: "Spirit Children born of God & Wife." The Mormon belief is that God has celestial sexual relations with his wife(s) and when she (they) become celestially pregnant, through a cosmic phenomena, some of the eternally existing 'pure intelligence' becomes the spirit that is carried by the celestial wife of God, and nine months later is born as an infant spirit into the "Spirit World."

If we lived before, as the Mormon doctrine claims, why don't we remember it? Well, the Mormon Church has a rather bizarre explanation as to why we cannot remember our pre-existence. Mormon Apostle Orson Pratt provided this explanation from a speech recorded in the "Journal of Discourses" and from his book "The Seer."

(1) "A great many people have supposed that the spirit which exists in the tabernacle [human body], for instance, of an infant, is of the same size as the infant tabernacle [human body] when it enters therein; No one will dispute that it is of the same size when it is enclosed therein; but how large was the spirit before it entered the tabernacle? Was it a full grown male or female spirit, or was it a little infant spirit in its pre-existent state? We have no account that I know of, in any revelation which God has given, of any infant spirit coming from the eternal worlds to take infant bodies; but we have an opposite account in the revelations which God has given; for if we turn to the Book of Ether [Book of Mormon] we shall find that the Lord Jesus, who was one of these spirits, and the first-born of the whole family, was a personage like unto a man, without flesh, blood or bones, but a full-grown spirit, thousands of years before he came to take his infant tabernacle...When all these spirits were sent forth from the eternal worlds, they were, no doubt, not infants; but when they entered the infant tabernacle, they were under the necessity, the same as our Lord and Savior, of being compressed, or diminished in size so that their spirits could be enclosed in infant tabernacles. If their bodies die in infancy, do their spirits remain infants in stature between death and the resurrection of the body? I think not." (Journal of Discourses, Vol 16, pp 333-335)(brackets mine)

So, we have seen thus far that Mormonism believes we all existed in the pre-existent 'Spirit World' as adult sized spirits. When we were born into this world, we had to be compressed to fit into our infant bodies. Now, let's see Mormon Apostle Orson Pratt's explanation as to why we can't remember our pre-mortal state:

(2) "When Jesus was born into our world, his previous knowledge was taken from Him: this was occasioned by His spiritual body being compressed into a smaller volume than it originally occupied. In His previous existence, His spirit, as the Scriptures testify, [Mormon scriptures] was of the size and form of man; when this spirit was compressed, so as to be wholly enclosed in an infant tabernacle, it had a tendency to suspend the memory; and the wisdom and knowledge, formerly enjoyed, were forgotten. ...So it is with man. When he enters a body of flesh, his spirit is so compressed and contracted in infancy that he forgets his former existence, and has to commence, as Jesus did, at the lowest principles of knowledge, and ascend by degrees from one principle of intelligence to another. Thus he regains his former knowledge; and by showing himself approved through every degree of intelligence, he is counted worthy to receive more and more, until he is perfected and glorified in truth, and made like his elder brother, possessing all things. (The Seer, p. 21)(brackets mine)

Mormon Apostle Orson Pratt, who would have been the fourth Prophet of the Church had he lived long enough, says the reason we cannot remember the 'Pre-existence' is because our adult sized spirits could not fit into our infant bodies at birth and when our adult spirits were compressed to infant size, we forgot: "When he enters a body of flesh, his spirit is so compressed and contracted in infancy that he forgets his former existence.."

Folks, there is no Biblical support for 'Pre-existence', it is anti-Christian. It is purely a Mormon unique doctrine; just one of many. There is no fundamental or historical Christian support for this doctrine. All Christian doctrines come from the Bible, God's inerrant word. To advocate that humans do not recall their 'pre-existent state' because their adult sized spirit had to be compressed to fit into an infant body, and that compression caused memory loss, is simply ludicrous!