Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Some Online Resources for Better Appreciating the LDS Temple

Among the many great resources that can help LDS people better understand and respect the majestic restoration of the ancient Temple, a few I recommend include:
  • The Sacred and the Profane by Mircea Eliade, one of the great classics in comparative religion that identifies common patterns in ancient and worldwide religious ritual and paradigms, much of which is so foreign to modern man but so inherent to the LDS Temple. LDS people preparing to go to or return to the Temple will be aided by understanding the ancient perspective of sacred space and time, of ritual reenactment of creation and the triumph of Deity over evil and chaos, of the role of sacred centers in bringing together the world of deity and the world of the living, the symbolism of the ancient altar, etc. The link is to Google Books.
  • King Benjamin's Speech, ed. by John Welch and Stephen Ricks. While this book is really about the fascinating ancient Hebraic and other ancient elements found in Mosiah 1-6 of the Book of Mormon, Chapter 8 in the printed book (section 10 online) indirectly sheds insight on the LDS Temple by discussing the pattern of ancient covenant making that is so well preserved (or restored) in the LDS Temple. Chapter 9 deals with the theme of entering into the joy of God's presence through participating in the covenant relationship, which can be related to the LDS Temple as well.
  • Sinai and Zion: An Entry into the Jewish Bible by Jon Levenson, a scholar now at Harvard. My favorite book on the temple!
  • Restoring the Ancient Church by Barry Bickmore. Has a chapter on the Temple and some surprising aspects of ancient Christianity.
  • "Deuteronomy: A Covenant of Love" by Stephen Ricks, Ensign, April 1990.

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