Sometimes understanding even basic aspects of a scriptures can be a matter of many years. Consider these verses, and ask yourself the simple question “when and where is Christ speaking this to his apostles?”
D&C 45:16 And I will show it plainly as I showed it unto my disciples as I stood before them in the flesh, and spake unto them, saying: As ye have asked of me concerning the signs of my coming, in the day when I shall come in my glory in the clouds of heaven, to fulfil the promises that I have made unto your fathers,
17 For as ye have looked upon the long absence of your spirits from your bodies to be a bondage, I will show unto you how the day of redemption shall come, and also the restoration of the scattered Israel.
18 And now ye behold this temple which is in Jerusalem, which ye call the house of God, and your enemies say that this house shall never fall.
20 And this temple which ye now see shall be thrown down that there shall not be left one stone upon another.
When we read verse 17 it sounds like it is being spoken to the apostles in the spirit world long after they had died, for it says that they have looked on the long absence of their spirits from their bodies as a bondage. But verse 20 makes it clear that this is being said before the temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in 70 A.D. and the whole text makes you feel like you are listening to an account of Christ’s sermon in Matthew 24.
This all seems to contradict itself at first.
Until we realize that Christ is speaking to his disciples during their mortality, that it is an account of the sermon in Matthew 24, but that the disciples knew things we don’t give them credit for. We think, and teach, that they thought the second coming would be very imminent. But in reality, they knew at the very least that the resurrection was a long way off, and they looked on the long time they would live in the spirit world without their physical bodies as a bondage.
And THAT is what Christ is saying in verse 17. His disciples knew that the resurrection was a long ways off (not the resurrection of those who had lived before Christ, but the resurrection of those who lived after). And they saw the time without their bodies as a bondage.
And why did they look at the separation of their spirit from their body as a bondage? Because they could not partake of the joy of marriage and children without a body.