Many people will be sent to the lower kingdoms "because they were not willing to enjoy that which they might have received" (D&C ), namely exaltation in the celestial kingdom.
Even so, according to Mormon theology, all three kingdoms are kingdoms of glory, and even the lowest is more glorious than man can currently comprehend.
Like many conservative Christians, the Latter-day Saints believe that Jesus will return to earth to establish Zion, the paradisiacal Promised Land, but the Mormons believe specifically that Jesus will establish his new kingdom on the American continent.
This expectation derives from revelation given through the prophet Joseph Smith, and it is in harmony with the history laid out in the Book of Mormon, a modern scripture that came into being through the agency of the prophet.
Mormons believe that after death, the spirit leaves the body and moves on to the spirit world to wait for resurrection.
Another important element of the Latter-day Saints' doctrine is their concept of a "plan of salvation" that encompasses the spirit's existence before, during and after time spent on earth.
The Saints believe that prior to being born, each person has a pre-mortal life.
This text, which reads something like the Old Testament, tells the story of an ancient Hebrew patriarch and prophet named Lehi, who, in roughly 600 B.
C., was called by God to lead a group of Jews from Jerusalem to the New World.
They base this contention on the fact that the Mormon conception of God -- summarized by LDS President Lorenzo Snow, who said, "As man is God once was, and as God is man may become" -- differs from traditional Christian ideas.