Talents, traits developed in the premortal life carried into mortality

Jeremiah's call to be a prophet, recounted in the first chapter of the book of Jeremiah, verses 4 and 5, affirms the fundamental doctrines of the premortal existence and foreordination.

It reads: "Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,"Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations."

Writing in The Mortal Messiah, Elder Bruce R. McConkie stated: "When we pass from pre-existence to mortality, we bring with us the traits and talents there developed. True, we forget what went before because we are here being tested, but the capacities and abilities that then were ours are yet resident within us. Mozart is still a musician; Einstein retains his mathematical abilities; Michelangelo his artistic talent; Abraham, Moses and the prophets their spiritual talents and abilities. Cain still lies and schemes. And all men with their infinitely varied talents and personalities pick up the course of progression where they left it off when they left the heavenly realms.

"Michael the archangel, standing second only to Christ among the spirits destined to dwell on earth, came to Eden's vales with all the sense, wisdom and judgment that he had gained in pre-existence. He came as a son of God, into an Edenic state from which he soon fell, bringing with him the desires, inclinations, aptitudes and talents developed during long years of obedience in the Divine Presence.

" . . . And as with Adam, so with all men: all bring with them what was then theirs; all build in immortality upon the foundation laid in premortality. Abraham, who by obedience and devotion became one of the noble and great in pre-existence, came into mortality with every talent and capacity that then was his.

" . . . Jeremiah was chosen before he was born; before he came forth out of the womb, the Lord ordained him, and sanctified him, and called him to be a prophet; before he drew a mortal breath his mission was known and prepared, all because of the special talents and powers he came to have while yet a spirit being." (Jer. 1:5.)

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