Temple Worship

4 genius ways to study the temple from one of our favorite scholars (+ her book recommendations)

We can deepen learning about our covenants throughout our lives.

On a recent episode of the Magnify podcast, Melinda Brown, author of Eve and Adam: Discovering the Beautiful Balance, shared some study tips and book recommendations to deepen learning about temple worship, our covenants, and the temple garment. We found her ideas so helpful as we pursue the lifelong learning that comes from temple worship, we compiled them into a list we can refer back to again and again.

Study Tips

  • When reading the scriptures, look for examples of how people use their bodies and how physically participating in something makes a difference.  
  • With the three ideas in mind—learning through symbols, how much our bodies matter, and we’re meant to be happy now—look at the ordinances and practices you’re familiar with such as tithing, baptism, fasting, and others. Try to study to understand them better and then connect them to what we learn in the temple. “We have a lot more connection points than sometimes we think we do,” Mindy says. 
  • On the Church’s website, search for a phrase or term that you remember from the temple then study when and how it appears in scripture and conference talks.  
  • Mindy’s advice: “Just open your mind, think expansively, wonder. Go on a walk in nature and look up into the sky and leaves, and listen to the birds and just wonder. It’s just amazing what your mind will open up to and invite the spirit in to teach you.”  

Study References

Let's Talk about Temples and Ritual by Jennifer C. Lane

“As we participate in temple ordinances, our sinful life ritually dies with Christ, and we emerge victorious through Him, empowered by covenant to live unto God. ‘Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him: Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God’ (Romans 6:8–10). Going forth from the temple, as we wear the temple garment, we remember that we have been redeemed from sin and are living unto God.” (p. 58-59)

Let's Talk about Temples and Ritual

In this book, Dr. Jennifer Lane draws on scripture and the history of ancient and modern temples to share how, in the temple, we can find redemption through Christ.

The Temple Experience: Passage to Healing and Holiness by Wendy Ulrich

Temple ordinances depict simultaneously a journey and a destination. The temple is God's map for this journey of healing, his blueprint for a house of personal holiness. The journey involves birthing, bandaging, creating, covenanting, discerning, loving, and receiving. The house requires healing and sanctifying principles and tools for turning the raw materials of our daily experience into a House of the Lord. Along that journey and within that house is a strait and narrow passageway that leads us to the pearl of greatest price. The temple shows us where. (Ch 1)

The Temple Experience: Passage to Healing and Holiness

Perfect for new and longtime temple worshipers alike, this priceless volume is guaranteed to help you use the temple experience and its rich symbolism to find healing and hope that will let you see yourself more truthfully, then seek God more trustingly.

Other Titles to Deepen Learning

The Holy Invitation by Anthony Sweat

“While it isn’t necessary to literally see God in this lifetime, what is required is for us to learn the patterns to be in the Lord’s presence spiritually. We must become members of Christ’s kingdom.” (Part 1: A History)

The Holy Invitation: Understanding Your Sacred Temple Endowment

Learn how you can accept the invitation the Lord has extended to you personally and find profound meaning in the sacred temple endowment.

The Holy Covenants by Anthony Sweat

“Regardless of your age or temple experience, understanding and living temple promises is crucial to becoming endowed with heavenly power in everyday life. ... There is a difference, you know, in receiving your temple endowment—or participating in the ceremony—and becoming “endowed with power from on high” (D&C 38:32) in your life. We have to pursue receiving the endowment of power in a similar way we pursue receiving the Holy Ghost.” (Author’s note)

The Holy Covenants: Living Our Sacred Temple Promises

In The Holy Covenants, religion professor Anthony Sweat helps us better understand the major covenants of the temple endowment as a pattern of divine living.

Eve and Adam: Discovering the Beautiful Balance by Melinda Wheelright Brown

“In a profound way, Eve represents all of us. On close examination, we see ourselves reflected in her faith. We each chose mortality, even knowing it would be hard and often painful, because we trusted that Divine Council who assured us we could learn and progress, ultimately not only returning to Them but becoming like Them. Exaltation isn’t just a destination, a grand event that happens once we finally cross the finish line; it’s also a journey, a sanctifying process that happens gradually, line upon line, all along the way.” (Introduction)

Eve and Adam: Discovering the Beautiful Balance

Examining truths about Eve allows us to better understand Eve and Adam's mission and their beautiful, balanced interdependence.

The Priesthood Power of Women by Barbara Morgan Gardner

“Since the temple is the Lord’s house, all that we do in the temple—every covenant we make and every ordinance we participate in—reminds us of, is symbolic of, draws us closer to, and helps us become more like Jesus Christ.” (p. Ch 4)

The Priesthood Power of Women: In the Temple, Church, and Family

This powerful book will help all members, especially women, more completely understand God's power and take full advantage of the powers, blessings, and privileges available to them in this mortal journey.

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