The role of the temple

by Rusty Lindquist on March 29, 2008 · 0 comments

We know from a careful study of the scriptures that God prepares us in stages, in steps, line upon line, and precept upon precept, here a little there a little. 

First he gave us the true gospel of Christ, which includes the basic principles of exaltation, of repentance and redemption, of prayer and faith, of hope and happiness.  We received the scriptures which gave us the ability to study and increase our individual understanding of these things.  Then was organized the church of Christ on the earth, where we could come and receive further instruction.  We were given a prophet, for regular inspired (and timely) guidance.

But Heavenly Father knew that here on earth life would be fraught with trials, tribulations, and the troubles of the world.  He knew that our minds would become inevitably bogged down in the mire of mortality.

He knew that for our eternal welfare, we needed something special.  We needed a place where we could transcend the trials and tribulations of the world.  A place that would more fully lift us out of the plane of our existence and provide us a complete and compelling view of our nature, and true condition before God.  A place where we could receive further instruction and enlightenment, and a place where we could better behold the fullness of Gods plan. 

So He gave us the temple.

The temple therefore becomes an instrument we can use to connect with God, his will and his plan, and communicate with him.  It’s an environment where we can be immersed in His spirit and enveloped in His light.

As Mormons, we too often take for granted, one of the most precious gifts we’ve been given.  Let us appreciate the temple, and let it play a more active role in our lives.

Rusty

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 ditchu March 31, 2008 at 10:26 PM

I have heard some people find the teachings in the temple weird. They were unprepaired for the experience. I think the Temple has a lot to offer those whom take time and put in effort to perpair for the experience and are ready to learn when they approach the temple.

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2 Rusty Lindquist April 1, 2008 at 10:53 AM

I completely agree. In fact, I’m the temple preparation instructor for our ward (so I’m a bit biased), but an unprepared visit is just unwise. There’s a very real ammount of context you should know and understand before just going.

The temple isn’t a club. You don’t just drop in out of the blue, unprepared. It’s a sacred experience. It’s the house of God. There’s a reason you have to go through two interviews, having to answer the same set of questions two timesbefore you can even get permission to go. That should be a clue.

I’m saddened when I find that someone had a bad experience, because that should never be the case.

I believe it was President Hinckley that said that when he first went to the temple, he was “scared to death”, and said that “we’re sending far too many people to the temple unprepared”.

The committments you make in the temple are eternal, and not to be taken lightly. But when someone goes who is prepared, who is humble and hungering, the experience is boundlessly enriching.

Thanks for your wise comment.

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3 C Jones April 9, 2008 at 1:10 PM

I have a son who is getting ready to serve a mission. He is attending a YA branch and they don’t really have a temple prep class going on.

I’d like to have some Family Home Evening lessons on preparing for the temple, but I’m feeling kind of overwhelmed. Where to start? What teachings about the temple does a missionary need most?

Do you have any favorite talks or other sources that you use in your teaching that you could recommend?

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4 Rusty Lindquist April 9, 2008 at 2:18 PM

I sure do. I’ll tell you what, I’ll do a dedicated post on “Preparing for the temple”, wherein I’ll answer these questions and more. I think it’s an inspired idea for sure, and I love the topic.

Check back tomorrow, I’ll try to do it tonight (I’ve got three soccer games tonight for my kids – all on different fields, LOL), if not I’ll get to it tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by, please come back often, and feel free to let others know about the blog.

Thanks.

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5 ditchu April 9, 2008 at 2:42 PM

I recomend the book: The Holy Temple by Boyd K. Packer. But the basic classes usually use a booklet that is excerpts from the this book.

Also I recomend he keep current on his scripture study and have a desire not only to go on his mission but to enter the temple.

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6 Rusty Lindquist April 9, 2008 at 4:01 PM

I agree there’s nothing like “The Holy Temple”, and it’s true that the Temple Prep Manual contains MANY excerpts directly from that book.

It can be a bit weighty, depending on your sons personality, he may have a hard time getting into it. Some do, some don’t – but there is no comparison.

I also agree that if nothing else – someone who reads their scriptures daily, and really ponders them, will naturally find them selves largely prepared for the temple experience, because they’ll be so closely tuned to the spirit that it will make up all the difference.

I’ve jotted some notes down and plan on posting the full thing tonight. It’s such a valuable topic (if anyone else has ideas, please share them!)

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7 Lilola April 24, 2008 at 7:00 PM

I believe that people who attend the temple for the first time should be instructed to listen closely. They should know that they won’t remember everything, maybe not anything after the first time. But if they listen, especially in the initiatory ordinances, they will come away with the feeling of having been greatly blessed. Of course, whenever possible, they/we should go back frequently. When I was endowed, Salt Lake was the closest temple (almost 2000 miles away). It was several years before I was in a temple again. Then came Washington DC and then Chicago – fabulous! And now we have a temple only an hour’s drive. We are there almost every week and the understanding continues to grow.

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8 Rusty Lindquist April 28, 2008 at 12:04 PM

I agree. You won’t get it all the first time, and that’s okay, you’ve got lots of time to come back. Thanks for sharing. The push of President Hinkley to build more temples has been such a tremendous blessing.

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