The Celestial Costume Ball


“It is a sad fate for a man to die too well known to everybody else and still unknown to himself”- Sir Francis Bacon

The above quote reminds me of a verse in the New Testament. It is found in the thirteenth chapter of Corinthians. It is a well-known chapter because in it is found Paul’s wonderful writings on charity. It also contains the well-known verse of “…when I became a man I put away childish things” (vs. 11). But it’s the following verse that is not oft quoted, but packs a powerful message. It reads:

“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known” (vs.12)

What does “then shall I know even as also I am known” mean? It vaguely sounds like Sir Francis Bacon’s quote. Perhaps it was the inspiration of Bacon’s quote.

Section Seventy-Six of the Doctrine and Covenants gives us an answer. This great section is the revelation given by the Lord to Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon on the Kingdoms of Heaven.  Its one of the most informative and powerful revelation given to man on the next life. In it are these words, speaking of those obtaining the highest glory:

“They who dwell in his presence are the church of the Firstborn; and they see as they are seen, and know as they are known, having received of his fullness and of his grace…” (vs. 94-95)

One of the most powerful drives that all of us have is to gain an understanding of our true identity.  As Sir Francis Bacon opined, lucky is the man who is able to discover, in this life, the mystery of “himself”. Our true identity is important for us to know, so that we can reach our full potential! In this life we do see through a “glass, darkly” because we are temporarily separated from our Father, the source of all light. But through the restoration of the true gospel of Jesus Christ, all men are able to look through a more “clear glass” into our past existence, and into the next life. We are able to come to a greater understanding of our divine heritage and destiny! Paul was saying that he had a limited understanding of who he was, but that he had faith that if he lived righteously, he would be rewarded with a full understanding of his eternal identity. Anyone who has ever attended a sealing in the temple knows of the symbolic nature of the mirrors which create an endless reflection. The mirrors are located in a room highly lite and with glass of perfect clarity.

Because God is our creator, He sees us differently than we see ourselves. The day will come when invitations will go out inviting those qualified to attend a “Celestial Costume Ball.” At the appointed time at the ball, all masks will be removed revealing the true identities of everyone attending. Most intriguing, to us will be who is behind our own masks. It’s the Cinderella story, in reverse. You come in rags, and leave dressed as queens and kings. At the Celestial Ball you are likely to hear someone exclaim, “So it was you, who helped me get through the toughest times of my life!” Then as they embrace, with tears in their eyes, the words “Oh I always felt such special feelings for you my dear friend” and the reply, “And me for you!”Such are the glorious reunions that await those who live faithful lives and who will bask in God’s love for eternity.

It is a “sad fate” to live a life and not know who you are! Fortunately, through the restored gospel of Jesus Christ our identities have been more fully revealed.  May we all live our lives such that the day will come when  invitations to the “Celestial Costume Ball” arrive at our doors.  There, in his presence, all will be revealed.  It will then be our privilege to “know as we are known”.


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