40: “It Is Thy House, a Place of Thy Holiness” (Doctrine and Covenants 109–110)
Have you ever been to a temple dedication? If so, do you have any specific memories about the event? A temple dedication often brings a flurry of excitement and energy to an area, and that was certainly the case for the Saints who were eagerly awaiting the dedication of the Kirtland temple. This week we will dig into Doctrine and Covenants 109–110 to read the stories of Saints who attended the dedication. We'll see what their experiences teach us about attending temples, including the struggle we might sometimes have over feeling worthy to be there.
Title for Section 109: “Dedicatory Prayer–Kirtland Temple”
Quote: “President Hinckley spoke of an ‘unseen audience’ that he expected to be present for the dedication, including the Prophet Joseph Smith, his brother Hyrum, and ‘many others who gave their life and their time and their energies to the construction of [the original Nauvoo] temple.” (“Nauvoo Illinois Temple Dedicated,” Ensign September 2002).
Movie: The Ghost and Mr. Chicken
“One of my earliest recollections was the dedication of the Temple. My father took us up on his lap and told us why we were going and what it meant to dedicate a house to God. And although so very young at that time, I clearly remember the occasion. I can look back through the lapse of years and see as I saw then Joseph the Prophet, standing with his hands raised towards heaven, his face ashy pale, the tears running down his cheeks as he spoke on that memorable day. Almost all seemed to be in tears….” (as quoted in Karl Ricks Anderson, Joseph Smith’s Kirtland, 1996, 183)
Benjamin Brown letter to his wife about the events of the dedication:
“Sunday March 27th 1836: [one rule for the dedication] of the House of the Lord was that no small children would be admitted. One woman however not knowing the order brought her child about 2 months old - she stood at the door for a long time, manifested an anxious desire to enter - at length one of the Elders said Brethren, my faith is that this child will not cry in the House today - the woman & child entered and the child did not cry from 8am till 4 in the afternoon. But when the saints all shouted Hosana the child … shouted also when the saints paused it paused when they shouted it shouted for three times when they shouted amen it shouted also for three times then it resumed nursing without any alarm.”
“Sunday Evening after Joseph spoke opened & told them the day of Penticost was continued the the [sic] Brethren began to to [sic] prophesy many prophesied in the name of the Lord then began speaking in tongues and it filled as it were the whole house, perhaps there were forty speaking at once Cloven tongues of fire was seen to sit on many of them”
- Matthew 21:15-16 Sore displeased when children crying out in the temple
- Luke 19:40 “Even the stones would cry out”
Hebrew: “Crying” is from Hebrew word krad'-zo = to call aloud or cry (out).
First part of the prayer offered at the dedication: Doctrine and Covenants 109:1-21
Gathering broken china for temple walls: “Shining Walls,” by Jessica Larsen
Cross reference: Ezekiel 47:3-5
Second part of the prayer offered at the dedication: Doctrine and Covenants 109:24-36
Abraham’s sacrifice: Genesis 22:14
Hebrew: Jehovah-jireh = the lord will see, or provide.
Idaho Falls temple dedication: “Dedicatory Prayer,” 23 September 1945
Third part of the prayer offered at the dedication: Doctrine and Covenants 109:61-80
“Cloudy and dark day”:
- Doctrine and Covenants 109:61
- Cloud stones: see “5 Fascinating Symbols on the Salt Lake Temple + the Meanings Behind Them,” and Church of Jesus Christ Temples – Salt Lake Temple.
- 2 Corinthians 4:5-6
Bracket: Doctrine and Covenants 109:68-71: “Personal ask” from Joseph
Qualities of the Lord: Doctrine and Covenants 109:77
Title for Section 110: “Appearance of the Savior, Keys Restored”
“On Sunday, April 3, 1836, a sacrament meeting was held in the Kirtland Temple. During the meeting, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery went to an area of the temple where a veil separated them from the congregation. There they offered a prayer. After they rose from prayer, Jesus Christ appeared to them and accepted the newly dedicated temple. Moses, Elias, and Elijah then appeared, and priesthood keys were restored. Doctrine and Covenants 110 is an account of this vision” (Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Seminary Teacher Manual: Lesson 118).
Quote: “One week later, on Easter Sunday, the Lord appeared in a magnificent vision and accepted His temple. This occurred on April 3, 1836, almost exactly 182 years ago from this Easter Sunday. It was also the Passover season—one of those rare times when Easter and Passover overlap. After the vision closed, three ancient prophets, Moses, Elias, and Elijah, appeared and committed keys which were essential to accomplish the Lord’s purpose for His restored Church in this dispensation. That purpose has been simply, but eloquently, defined as gathering Israel, sealing them as families, and preparing the world for the Lord’s Second Coming” (Elder Quentin L. Cook, “Prepare to Meet God,” general conference, April 2018).
Appearance of Christ: Doctrine and Covenants 110:1-4
3 His aeyes were as a flame of fire; the hair of his head was white like the pure snow; his bcountenance shone above the brightness of the sun; and his cvoice was as the sound of the rushing of great waters, even the voice of dJehovah, saying:
Cross reference: John 4:26 Footnote A: Greek translation = “I am He that speaketh unto thee”
Quote: “What if, when the Savior returns to the Earth, to usher in the Millennium, an invitation is sent through our priesthood leaders that the Savior is in the Temple and we are invited to come and see Him…if we have a recommend. I will make you a promise. Should such an invitation be extended, your Bishops & Stake Presidents will not be in their offices signing recommends! They will be on their way to the temple. You and I must have our recommends!” (President Preston J. Checketts, Brigham City temple dedication, September 23, 2012, 9 AM session).
Second of two visions in Section 110: Doctrine and Covenants 110:11-16
Quote: “Were it not for the authority restored in the Kirtland Temple, the entire purpose for which the earth was created would have come to naught (Malachi 4:5-6; D&C 2). Here the authority to gather Israel from her long dispersion and to lead “the ten tribes from the land of the north” was restored by Moses; here the authority to perform eternal marriages and bind families together for eternity was given anew by the Elias from Abraham’s dispensation; and the sealing power, by which all gospel ordinances are sealed for both the living and the dead, was restored by Elijah” (Joseph Fielding McConkie, Ostler, Revelations of the Restoration, 2000, 884).
Quote: “If the repentance of a wayward child does not happen in this life, are the cords of sealing strong enough for them to repent in the next life? In the Doctrine & Covenants we are told, ‘The dead who repent will be redeemed, through obedience to the ordinances of the house of God (D&C 138:58–59). There are very few whose rebellion and evil deeds are so great that they have ‘sinned away the power to repent.’
That judgment must be left up to the Lord. He tells us, ‘I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men’ (D&C 64:10). Perhaps in this life we are not given to fully understand how enduring the sealing cords of righteous parents are to their children. There very well may be more helpful sources at work than we know. I believe there is a strong familial pull as the influence of beloved ancestors continues with us from the other side of the veil” (President James E. Faust, “Dear Are the Sheep That Have Wandered,” general conference, May 2003).
Joseph F. Smith’s dream, shared by President Hinckley: “I Am Clean” general conference, April 2007
Today's discussion of Doctrine and Covenants Section 109-110 is the Kirtland Temple dedication and it, too, will have an unseen and an even seen angelic audience, as well as being dedicated on a very symbolic day with some incredible stories that we will share with you today.
Welcome to the Sunday on Monday Study Group, a Deseret Bookshelf Plus Original and it's brought to you by LDS Living where we take the Come Follow Me lesson for the week, and we really dig into the scriptures together. I'm your host, Tammy Uzelac Hall.
Okay, so if you're new to our study group, we just want to make sure you know how to use this podcast. So follow the link in our description; it's going to explain how you can best use this podcast to enhance your Come Follow Me study, just like my friend, Kelly Nicole Webster, who listens. And we have some friends in common and it's been kind of cool to connect. So hi, Kelly. Now another incredible thing is, my favorite part of the study group is we're joined by two of my friends. It's like we're just sitting around the kitchen table, talking scripture. And so today, I've got Ron Case and Mark Christensen. Hi, guys.
Ron Case 1:35
Mark Christensen 1:36
All right. Now Ron, you've been on before. So thank you for being here again.
Ron Case 1:41
But Mark Christensen. So Mark was my Principal at East High School, at East Seminary, I should say. And we worked together for a couple of years. And now Mark and Ron, you both work at Ensign College. Is that right?
Ron Case 1:54
Correct. Right across the hall from each other.
Mark Christensen 1:57
We were at the U (University of Utah) though, before that together.
Ron Case 1:59
Yeah, we taught at the U, also, at the Institute there.
Oh, that's right. That's awesome. What's it like working together? Terrible?
Ron Case 2:07
You know, the problem is, we hardly ever see each other. Yeah, we're always in class. In the summer, like we've been hanging out for the last few days. I haven't been able to get any work done because we just talk to each other about stuff. We both love movies. We love the same movies. Anything Tom Cruise does we love. So (laughs)
Mark Christensen 2:29
Yeah, we're crazy. We're crazy about church history. So that's a really, it's hard to not be interesting, because there's so many commonalities. And so yeah, we have a lot of fun.
That is so true. That's why I thought of you two when Section 109 and 110 came; I'm like, these two have to be on. They know so much about church history. But going back to the movie thing. I think it's so funny because I do remember that about Mark; we used to talk movies. In fact, you love scary movies. And so we would talk about all the scary movies we'd seen. (laughters)
Mark Christensen 2:59
I've repented of that time. I don't like those anymore. They're too scary.
Ron Case 3:03
Oh, come on.
Not the terrible scaries.
Mark Christensen 3:05
Ron Case 3:06
Just the quiet place.
No, "Watcher in the Woods". I mean stuff like that.
Mark Christensen 3:11
"Ghost and Mr. Chicken".
Mark Christensen 3:15
No, really just Marsh and I and
Alright, we'll put a link to "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken". A few of you guys are like, what in the world? which many of you are because it's so old.
Ron Case 3:23
I love it. I love it. Well, if you want to know more about my guests and see their pictures, you can find that information in our show notes which are found at LDSLiving.com/ SundayonMonday. I mean, I've said this before, and I'm just gonna say it again. I'm here with two master teachers. And they're excellent storytellers, which is also going to make this episode so much fun. So I have asked them to just kind of help me; the three of us are going to teach these two sections and I think it's going to be a really cool experience. How you guys feel about it going into it?
Mark Christensen 3:52
Good. I'm ready.
Ron Case 3:54
Okay. So friends, grab your scriptures and let's dig in. Okay, so everybody who's listening, you're just gonna want to get some popcorn, pull up a chair, get a blankie. And you know, a nice Diet Coke or whatever you want to drink, because we are going to hear some amazing stories about the Kirtland Temple Dedication. So I'm going to go first, because this is my favorite thing. And I'm gonna let you guys just tell stories.
Okay, so this is what I love about section 109. Go to the section heading. And I want you to look at the date: it says March 27th, 1836. Here's what's so cool about that date. At this time, it's Palm Sunday, and I love Palm Sunday. In fact, I'll try to go to other churches, just to join them in their Palm Sunday celebration. So if you're wondering what Palm Sunday is, it's the Sunday before Easter, and other Christian faiths celebrate it because it represents Christ's triumphant entry into Jerusalem spoken of in Matthew chapter 21, verses 1-11.
So, six days before the Savior was crucified he rode through the city of Jerusalem on a donkey and as He rode, people spread out their garments and palm fronds and other foliage-like. And when I say garments, I mean, like coats and clothing and all of that. Because this is a sign of royalty, like you're bowing down to royalty, and riding in on a donkey was a sign of royalty. I thought this was so fascinating. And then - this is so incredible, in Matthew, - everybody there grabbed palm fronds and waved them in the air while they shouted this: "Hosanna to the Son of David. Blessed is He that cometh in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest." And so this is actually where we get the 'Hosanna Shout'. And that is where we get the waving of the white hanky, right?
Ron Case 5:33
Mark Christensen 5:33
Ron Case 5:34
Since we don't have palm trees in most of the US.
Exactly. So I think it's so cool that they're welcoming into the city. But on this day, March 27th, 1836, we are welcoming Christ into His home. And that's what we do when we raise, wave the hankie and do the 'Hosanna Shout'. And so there's that really cool connection. So that's my favorite thing. Palm Sunday. I love it. Mark it somewhere on there. Alright, gentlemen, what do you got? Tell me some other incredible stories from this.
Ron Case 6:02
Can I just, first of all say that I totally agree with you about the dedication of the Nauvoo Temple. I remember it distinctly; it's one that I remember, even though it was almost 20 years ago. It was like, unlike any other temple dedication I've ever attended. And so I feel like I got a little taste of what it would have been like to be at the Kirtland Temple, original Kirtland Temple dedication.
Mark Christensen 6:29
Can I add to that really quick? So we went in 2000, the temple was still under construction. And I thought, we're not going to go there, like all these crazy people like Ron and his family. (laugh) Because I just hate fighting crowds, etc., you know. And so we were there, it was an incredible experience, just to come in to Nauvoo. And just like what Ron said, we, we felt something even then, that we HAD to go back. So we did go back in 2002. But it was after the dedication and we were able to go through and, and do baptisms for the dead for some of our relatives, for our kids, because they were quite young then, and then for the rest. My wife and I did an Endowment Session and just want to kudos, it was an amazing experience.
Well, me being from Missouri, I was so excited, because we'd go to Nauvoo for a lot of our summers. And so after it was dedicated, I could not wait to go there and do a session. And so my friend flew me there for my birthday. And I walked up those stairs, up to the doors, and we walk in and I am just so excited. I'm emotional. Like here it is, we're finally going to the Nauvoo Temple.
And I hand him my recommend, and it's expired! True Story, expired the day before. And he had this southern drawl and he goes, "Well, ma'am. Your recommend's expired." And I was like, "What are you talking about? I'm a seminary teacher." "Still expired, ma'am." And I go, "But I work in the Temple every Saturday in the baptistry. I'm a volunteer." "Still expired, ma'am." And they're like, can't you call her Bishop or Stake President? "Nope, 'cuz it's expired." Like if I had forgotten it, they could have called somebody. Nope. Expired means you got to go through the whole process again. Haven't been back since.
Ron Case 8:15
You know, but at least the feeling that you felt is, is what these people would feel in Kirtland.
Yeah. Well, what is it about the Kirtland dedication that sets it apart from all others as far as stories go? Is there something, is there a significant story?
Mark Christensen 8:29
You know, one thing that really was amazing as we reviewed this, first of all, this is one of those spectacular times in church history, really is. When you have the dedication of the Kirtland Temple, it's, remember it is a dedication, as was mentioned earlier in your, in your introduction when President Hinckley said "others are here", is the idea that this is both sides of the veil. This has been much, much time that has gone by. And so when the Kirtland Temple is being dedicated, there are others on the other side of the veil that are rejoicing over this.
And so the common, and I hate to say that, common - because what they're talking about is not uncommon - and that is the spiritual manifestations of seeing angels, and hearing singing, right? And having the gifts of the Spirit poured out. That is mentioned over and over by all sorts of different people, leaders and regular members alike. And so that is incredible that that happens the way it does. And so I just want to mention, that's a constant of everyone that talks about it.
Ron Case 9:36
I would say that it's true of every temple dedication, but it's especially true of this one, because it's the first one in the dispensation. And it's this Pentecostal, you know, - that's the word they're using at that time - outpouring of the Spirit harkens back to Acts, chapter two. And it's the Lord's way of letting the saints know that, "This is my true church. This is the same church I organized, you know, 2000 years ago. It is the same church with the same gifts of the Spirit, the same power." I mean, we take those things for granted today, because most of us have had them in our lives for a long time. But these early saints, I mean, this is new
This is new stuff. What are some of the things they saw? Or what are some things people said they saw?
Mark Christensen 10:27
Well, as we mentioned, there were, there were that they saw angels. Children, if you remember, standing even on the outsides seeing angels on top of the temple, which adults see also. And one thing is, Ron and I have discussed this since we have our offices close by each other, is that people did not all have the same manifestations. Now, they did all feel the spirit very strongly, but it was dependent upon your personal spiritual gifts. And so people saw angels, specifically testified that Peter was seen entering the temple, which is very interesting that then almost as a forrunner, you know, because the Savior is not mentioned as being seen at the dedication. He's seen at later meetings, all right, and He accepts the temple a week later, and He appears and says, "I have accepted this house."
But it's interesting that Peter is sent; that there's nowhere mentioned at the dedication that the Savior was seen. But angels, and voices, and singing and all that was, was manifest. But one of my favorite little moments, because it's from a child's view, is this little Silvia Cutler Web. She says this, "I love visualizing church history, what would it have been like to sit in that meeting?" All right, there it is. There are 1000 people in there. And so this little girl was sitting on her parent's lap. And she said this, and I just thought it was beautiful, because it's so simple, but I think profound and give you the feeling that was in there.
She said, "One of my earliest recollections was the dedication of the Kirtland Temple. My father took me on his lap, and told us why we were going, what it meant to dedicate a house of God. And although so very young at the time, I clearly remember the occasion. And here's this little thing. I look back through the lapse of years. And I see, as I saw then, the Prophet Joseph, standing with his hands raised toward heaven, tears running down his cheeks as he spoke on that memorable day. Almost everyone was in tears."
That's a great story, Mark. I am so glad that you shared that; that is so cool. Thank you for sharing that. You know, as you're, as you're talking and I'm, I'm thinking of this, the, you know, the dedicatory prayer, that is what Doctrine and Covenants Section 109 is, the dedicatory prayer. That the three of us can definitely agree as teachers that much of religious study or religious courses you'll take in your lifetime are subjective. It's kind of like whatever stands out to us as teachers, that's what we're going to teach you, because we really like it.
And so as we read Section 109, those of you who are listening, I really want you to do this: I want you to take the time to read Section 109. And I'm going to ask you this week on Instagram and Facebook to share what stood out to you. Because Mark, when you said that people were having different spiritual experiences at the Kirtland Temple dedication based on their spiritual gifts, I feel like we could have a whole discussion about that. I mean, that was so cool, because I feel like that applies to reading Doctrine and Covenants section 109. In fact, the title for Section 109 is "Dedicatory Prayer, Kirtland temple".
And so as you are reading that this week, I want you to mark what stands out to you based on your spiritual gifts. And then I'm going to ask you to share it this week on Instagram and Facebook. I want to know what stands out to you as you read that. And in the next segment, we are going to jump into Doctrine and Covenants Section 109. And we're going to share with you what stood out to us. This is gonna be great.
Segment 2 13:59
Okay, here we are, we are in Doctrine and Covenants Section 109. And before we jump into these verses, let's start out with another story. Ron, what do you got?
Ron Case 14:07
Well, I don't know why this is my favorite story. But I think cuz it harkens back to the triumphal entry of Jesus. A woman shows up to Kirtland for the dedication of the temple with a two-month old baby in her arms. And the men at the door saying, "I don't know if you know the rule, but there's no babies in arms allowed in the temple." And it was going to be a long meeting. I mean, Sidney Rigdon spoke for two and a half hours in the morning. So, you know, there
Yeah, let's point that out. It wasn't a quick, like one and like, yeah, it was a long dedication.
Ron Case 14:41
It wasn't like the ones we have today. It was like the whole day from eight to four. And so it was tough for little kids to be there; couldn't have babies in there. That's what I'm saying. And so when she shows up and she didn't know this, she goes to Joseph Senior, Joseph Smith's father and says, "I don't know what to do with my baby. I don't know anyone that could watch him", (or her, I can't remember if it's a boy or girl). And he said, "Don't worry, I'll take care of it."
And said to the men at the door, "You know, I have faith. We need to have faith. Do you guys have enough faith that we could ask the, you know, Lord to bless this child that it wouldn't cry for the whole meeting?" And they all agreed and they let her in. And this baby, they said, did not make a sound the whole time until they got to the Hosanna Shout. And when they got to the Hosanna Shout, and this is told by Eliza R. Snow - Benjamin Brown corroborates this - that when they all shouted, they did the shout, the child, the baby shouted with them. When they paused, the baby paused. When they shouted three times, the baby shouted, shouted the amens. Which is, I mean, you know, if you think about that today, you would be like, Oh my gosh, that's the weirdest thing. But, right? But remember
But what, which part? That the baby was quiet? or where the baby shouted, I mean, the whole story, I'm
Ron Case 16:12
But, yeah. But remember what happens in Jesus' triumphal entry, right? They are waving the palm leaves and shouting "Hosanna to the Son of David." And when Jesus finally gets to the temple, which is the whole thing, they're welcoming to a Temple, right? It says in
Matthew 21:(15) ".....when the chief priests and scribes saw the wonderful things that he did, and the children crying in the temple, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David;" (This is that Hebrew word, 'to shout,' right? 'to cry'.) "they were sore displeased." and they said to Jesus, do you hear what these say?
Jesus said unto them, 16 "Yea, have (you) never read, Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings thou has perfected praise?"
I mean, this child was nursing at the time of the shout, and interrupted its nursing to do the shout, and then went back to nursing.
Oh, my gosh.
Ron Case 17:09
Isn't that crazy? I mean, and another in Luke 19, the Lord tells them, you know, if if I told my followers to be quiet, the very stones would cry out. That's how powerful the spirit was, you know, that they can't hold their peace. Even a little baby can't help but be caught up in this.
Mark Christensen 17:31
And yet it was peaceful for seven hours. It's crazy.
So crazy, especially when you consider, you know, an hour-long sacrament meeting, if that's the
Ron Case 17:41
Ron Case 17:43
But you know how it is in Sacrament meetings sometimes when the Spirit comes in? And everything gets quiet, and even the babies stop crying. It's like, Whoa, okay. We know how that is.
We do. Oh, Ron, that is such a great setup for these verses we're going to talk about, because we're only going to cover verses 1-23. What are some significant things that stood out to you in these verses and how Joseph starts out this dedicatory prayer? Which, I just have to say, I think is very interesting, that it is only one of two inspired prayers in the Doctrine and Covenants. Section 65 is the other one. This is an inspired prayer that Joseph pre-wrote, and then read at the dedication.
Ron Case 18:20
And you could say, I think accurately, that every temple dedication prayer is an inspired prayer, like scripture, and you can read them all on the church's website, and they sound like scripture, just like scripture.
I absolutely agree. Yeah
Mark Christensen 18:37
I think it's significant, too, that here the Lord is really helping us understand what He wants us to pray for. Just like in the Bible Dictionary, when you look under prayer, that wonderful theory there that He wants us, here's what I want you to understand that you ought to be praying for,' all right, 'so that I can bless you with these things.' And I love the way it starts out, you know. Lord, thou that keeps covenants. You who keeps covenants, and shows mercy. And I'm adding my own, 'to those of us who don't keep them perfectly like You.' I love that thought.
And then to just just as a kind of an overview, and I'm not going to go through all these, but early on in my teaching career, I was introduced to this idea and it's never left me when I read this prayer. If you look for every blessing, all right, and then you look for what the Lord expects us to do, okay?
Mark Christensen 19:27
But if you start looking for blessings, you know, the temple is a place where, and I love verse 5, for example, the second half of the verse. The temple is a place where the Son of man might have a place to manifest himself to his people. And there's different ways that that happens to each of us. Or the temple is the place where, for example, verse 10, we ask the Lord to assist us with His grace. Or the temple is a place where, in verse 12, His glory which is, - remember the glory of God is intelligence, or in other words, light and truth - where his light and truth may rest down upon us. In the bottom of the same verse, The temple is a place where his holy presence may be continually felt. I love that idea.
Hold on Mark, I want to write that at the top of my page. Okay, I love that mark. The temple is the place where that is so cool.
Ron Case 20:27
That's really cool. I underlined most of the same things that you said, including in verse 13. A place where they may feel thy power.
Mm hmm. Well, I thought of, too, the temple is a place where, for me verse 15. The temple is the place where "they may grow up in thee." I love that. Because I just feel like from the time that I went to the temple versus now, it's, it is I'm growing up, for sure. I came in there, I remember the first time, someone said, "Don't try to take in anything, just feel the spirit. That's all you need to do. Just go and sit and feel the spirit. And things will come later and then you'll want to start learning stuff." And I'm like, yeah, I'm still at that phase, where I just it and feel the spirit. I'm not, I mean, I'm learning stuff. But the temple is a place where I'm growing up in Thee. I love that idea. Ah, so good.
Ron Case 21:15
I like too, in verse 5, that first part where he says, you know, we've done this work through great tribulation and out of our poverty, we've given of our substance. You know, the stories of, the pioneers told these stories even later in Utah, when they were little children in Kirtland going out to their garbage piles. Because every home had one where you threw away your broken stuff, and searching through the garbage pile for broken bits of china and glass. Because the builder, I think his last name was Millett, the guy that was doing the exterior, wanted to mix in bits of glass and china with the plaster, to make the temple walls shine when the sun hit them. Mark and I have been there, you probably've been there. You can still feel the rough, sharp bits of glass and china in the exterior of that temple.
Well, it's been re-plastered, and I don't think, they didn't, they didn't put that back in there, did they Ron? I do know that when we went to the museum.
Oh, it's at the museum.
Yeah, and so they have chunks of the actual original plaster.
That's where it is.
Mark Christensen 22:24
And so you can see bits of pottery in there. And there was exactly what Ron said, but the whole temple has been replastered. So that one, but it's correct. And there were pottery mills around, or I don't know if you call them Mills. But anyway, they made pottery there, and they would have junk piles of pottery. And so members of the church, little children, too were asked to go get that. So that's one way they participated in bringing in the materials to help do that. But over the years, it wasn't till way later that suddenly it was 'and they donated their china', right. And I remember teaching that as an early Seminary Teacher. So I was, cuz that's what I heard.
Ron Case 23:01
We all taught false history.
Which of us hasn't, seriously!
Mark Christensen 23:05
We might get to the other side of that somebody will come forward and say "I gave my china and all sorts of
Ron Case 23:10
"I actually did break my best china to put in that temple wall." (laughs)
I'm sure there was someone. Well, and I like verse 5, too, because I'm thinking, you know, the story about how Emma Smith gathered the women out of great poverty to sew things and to make things for those who were working on the Kirtland temple. So the role that the women played in this was pretty significant too.
Ron Case 23:29
Sewing all the curtains for inside. That's a lot of work.
Yeah, so much work.
Ron Case 23:34
Can I say something again, about this "growing up inThee"? Because it is our Father in Heaven's house, right? It is our Father's, it's our house, right? And we are His children. And we go there to grow up. And you know. But I'm like you and I wonder if Ron had the same experience. But when I went to the temple for the first time, they didn't have the temple prep class. And when I went there, I think I heard through one of my friends that one of his priesthood leaders said, "Oh, just read the pearl of great price." So I did, and I'm in the temple, and, and believe me, it wasn't like a face-shaking experience at all. It was just a total bewilderment experience.
Mark Christensen 24:15
And the reason I mentioned that, if it's okay, this idea of growing up, it's just like what Ezekiel said back in Ezekiel, Chapter 47, verses 3-5, he gives this incredible image about the waters getting deeper. He's seen the temple,the latter-day temple but out and then he says, and this is symbolic but beautiful. He sees this water that comes out from the doors of the temple, symbolic living water, right. And wherever it goes, it gives life in this dry desert. And when I, And then he says this: When he first goes there, he measures the depth of the water, and it's only up to his ankles. But then he goes again and it's up to his knees. And then he goes again, it's up to his waist. And finally it says it was waters that were deep enough to swim in and that you couldn't even pass over.
For me the first time I went, it was like splashing, barely over my toes. But now I have to confess that I go there, and it's waters, definitely to swim in. And I still haven't crossed to the other side, you know, in my understanding of it, by any means. But I understand a lot more why people love the temple.
That's some great imagery, Mark, I appreciate you sharing that scripture. Well, and I feel like verse 15 just compounds even more when I'm thinking about, that they may grow up in me. Like, everyone, we are all His children. Like, we're all in His house, just trying to grow up. Trying to learn the best we can, every one of us, and we're not getting it right all the time. And that's okay. I almost feel like that verse now is sort of like, when someone does something stupid, I'll just remember, they're just 'growing up in thee.'
Ron Case 25:55
You know, by the way, Jesus had to do this, too, you know. Jesus went to the temple when he was 12. And, you know, he was just a little immature and didn't tell his parents where he was gonna be. And they get, you know, half-way home, and they're like, we lost the Son of God. And so they have to go back and try to find him. And he's like, didn't you know I would be in my father's house? I mean, it's, I guess they should have, but I mean, come on. He's got some growing up to do. And that's okay. And he says, remember back in Section 93. Grace, for grace, and, and you can do it the same way I did it. And it takes time. And it's a process, it's not an event.
Yeah, I love that connection to 93. That's all we're doing. So, wow, thank you. That's a great discussion of those verses. Oh, my gosh, I'm so excited to get into the next one. So let's do it. Okay, in the next segment, we're going to go over verses 24-60. And I'm just wondering if anyone else will be as surprised as I was about how there's sort of a shift in the tone. And I'm excited to talk about that.
Segment 3 26:58
Okay, so I don't know, did anyone else feel that, Ron? Mark? Is there kind of a shift in the tone in the prayer and in the things he prays for in verses 24-36?
Ron Case 27:09
I mean, I'll say this. I know that prayer is inspired by the Lord. But I also know that the Lord allows us to, you know, put our own thoughts in our prayers sometimes. Cuz not everything we say is inspired. And I'm not saying that that's true here. But you get a little sense of Joseph's emotions here, and how he's feeling and how they're all feeling about the persecution that they've been getting in Missouri. And they're really wondering, and you see this in, in the Liberty jail, too, right? Where Joseph's praying, "Lord, where art thou?", you know, "When are you going to come and take care of our enemies?" And at least he's praying, right? It's still a prayer, but I'm not sure how perfectly inspired everything is. I know the Lord wants justice. He wants it in the end. But it's got to be in His timetable. And I love how Joseph will say something in the prayer. And then he'll say, Oh, and we love our enemies and have mercy on them. But if you want to destroy them, that's fine, too. It's just, it kind of goes back and forth.
It totally does. I'm like
Ron Case 28:16
Like one of the things that I really love is his reference to the Father. And just keeps, says, keeps saying, "Holy Father, oh, Father", right? But then he also,
I've marked it every time; if you have your highlighters, it's says that "Holy Father". That stood out to me, so good.
Ron Case 28:35
It says that alot. And then but b,y the end of those verses, he is starting to shift into, Oh, Lord, oh, Jehovah. And it's like, hey, he has seen both of them at the same time. He knows they're both there. He's talking to both of them in a way. And that's okay, too. I think that's pretty cool.
Well, what I love about the use of the word Jehovah is for me, it goes back to the story of Abraham. So Abraham is about to sacrifice his son Isaac, and right before it happens, an angel of the Lord stops Abraham, and then shows Abraham a ram in the thicket that he's supposed to sacrifice instead. And then Abraham names the place where this happened. And he calls it, in Genesis chapter 22, verse 14, he names it, "Jehovah Jireh", which in Hebrew means, 'the Lord will be seen or provide'. And so here they are in their moment of need. The Lord has mercy for Abraham and Isaac, they were seen.
And here in this temple dedication in verse 34, Joseph prays, "O Jehovah, have mercy upon this people". And then the rest of these verses for me are covenant language. And so I just thought this was so cool, because it's really one of the first places in the book of Genesis that 'Jehovah' is used, meaning that the Lord will be seen or provide. And I feel like this whole section leads up to seeing Jehovah in the temple, and then Section 110. So I just loved all of this.
Ron Case 29:56
You know, I'm jumping ahead a little bit, but in verse 53 I love this where he says,
53 "But inasmuch as they will repent," (talking about their enemies), "thou art gracious and merciful, and wilt turn away thy wrath when thou lookest upon the face of thine Anointed."
I think he's speaking to the Father there, about the Son and His Atonement. You know, remember back in Section 45, in verses 3-5, where the Lord says, Look, I am pleading your cause before the Father. I'm always there pleading your cause before the Father and He, it's just like they're next to each other. They hear each other. They are with each other. If you're praying to One, you're probably, the other One's hearing it, too.
Oh, absolutely. That's so cool. Thank you. I'm marking all of this in my scriptures. So cool. Okay, keep going. Thank you.
Ron Case 30:51
The one last thing,I mean, because there's so much in here, but the one last thing I would mention is just that, if you read this carefully, if you read this section and all of Scripture carefully, that you will see phrases, that if you're in endowed in the temple, will just jump out at you. right? And verse 24 is one of those.
24 "We ask thee, Holy Father, to establish the people that shall worship, and honorably hold a name, honorably hold a name, and standing in this house, to all generations and for eternity."
That's just one of those phrases that I just love.
Mark would jump in.
Mark Christensen 31:32
I was just, the very next verse, "no weapon formed against them shall prosper". And then skipping to verse 26, and "no combination of wickedness shall have power to rise up and prevail over" (and note the word prevail. Just keep that in your mind, you know, prevail with God) "shall prevail over thy people upon whom thy name shall be put in this house".
Way back in Section 38, when they were commanded to leave New York to go to the Ohio to build a house and or to receive an endowment of power. It has this interesting phrase, in verses 11 and 12. And I mention them because what they'll say later in the dedicatory prayer. He says, in verse 11,
11 "For all flesh is corrupted before me; and the powers of darkness prevail upon the earth, among the children of men, in the presence of all the hosts of heaven -
12 "Which causeth silence to reign, and all eternity is pained, and the angels are waiting the great command to reap down the earth, to gather the tares that they may be burned; and" (then this interesting phrase), "behold, the enemy is combined."
Right? And then now, in the dedicatory prayer, he says, "No combination of wickedness shall have power to rise up and prevail over the people upon whom thy name shall b put in this house."
Ron Case 33:03
Ron Case 33:04
Love that so much. And we have to remember that, when things are looking dark. Sometimes in your own personal family, you have a family member who says, you know, I'm just gonna, I can't be in the church anymore, I'm just going to disassociate myself or leave the church because of this or that or whatever. And, you know, no matter what you say or do, sometimes it feels like you don't have any power to stop that from happening, but you just have to, like the Prophet says, Let God prevail. And in the end, it's gonna be okay, because you've been endowed in the temple. You've been sealed.
Well, that goes, even though it was last segment, but we didn't talk about verse 22. We'll just go back to it. Because I love that as a woman,
22 ".....we ask thee, Holy Father, that thy servants" (that means me) "may go forth from this house armed with thy power, and that thy name may be upon them, and thy glory be round about them, and thine angels have charge over them;"
And I just think how cool that I can leave the house of the Lord armed with power.
Ron Case 34:09
Absolutely. You wear the garment of the Holy Priesthood just like we do.
Yeah, I love that you just connected power to the garments. And that I am promised all of those blessings as a woman, as a wife, as a mother, as a friend, as a daughter. Wherever it is, whatever aspect of my life that I need power in and angels around me to help me. That is the key to having no combination succeed. I love that you taught us that Mark.
Mark Christensen 34:38
I want to come back to "the temple is a place where ", repeating what you just said in verse 22, "where you are armed with His power, where His name is put upon you. And the glory is around you." Again, glory, light and truth. And the angels have charge over you.
Ron Case 34:55
For all generations for eternity. It's eternal. This is eternal stuff.
This is so powerful. Oh, my gosh, I love this discussion. I can't write fast enough, please. And when you said for 'all eternity and all generations', I mean that includes your kids.
Ron Case 35:17
To all generations and for eternity, that's right; that it does include your kids. It's not over. It's not over if it's looking bad sometimes in this life. No power of the adversary is going to prevail in the end.
He just won't.
Ron Case 35:34
It started right here. I mean, once you get the temple, you've got the covenants. Now you get the promised blessings. You gotta keep the covenants, but, and you got to have your temple recommend, Tammy.
Yeah. (laughs) Not expired!
Ron Case 35:49
But you know. You have that, you're good.
Mark Christensen 35:52
That's how you honorably hold a name in His house, Tammy. Just sayin'
Yeah, thanks, Mark. (laughter)
Ron Case 35:59
Maybe that's because you know, Tammy, no unclean thing shall be permitted to come into the house to pollute it. And that's why, you know,
all right, you jerks. I was clean, all right? I just forgot to have my interview; I was busy at the time. In fact, my friend who was with me, she even got up in the face of the Recorder and said, "She's Relief Society President!" He goes, "Well, ma'am, that might be fine. But she, it says here it's expired."
Ron Case 36:25
It's so sad. That's got, that's kind of how it's gonna be at the last day like, you need to have your recommend - current.
Yes. And no matter how many positions you've had, totally. In all of this discussion, we just have to turn the page in Section 109. Because Ron, when you were just talking about how eternity, generations, he (the adversary) will not prevail. You know, it kind of just reminded me of verses 55 and 56. And for me, 59 was one of my favorite verses, because he's talking about, Joseph's saying, Please remember the kings and the princes and the nobles of the earth, and let their hearts be softened. And I wrote to the outside of that 'China', because we had a guest last week or a couple of weeks ago, Monica Alvarado, who's living in China. And we talked about what the church is like there and how we decided at the end, we're going to pray for the hearts of the people that are in China so that they can have the gospel of Jesus Christ there. And they have a temple there. I mean, it just has to happen. Right? It has to prevail.
Ron Case 37:25
Another one is, President Nelson announced one in Shanghai a couple years ago, right?
Yeah. And so it's so cool that we're seeing this happen in verses 55 and 56. And then I loved verse 59 because it is 100% me. He says the whole reason why we're praying for all of these people everywhere in the world.
59 "We ask thee to appoint unto Zion other stakes besides this one which thou has appointed, that the gathering of thy people may roll on in great power and majesty, that thy work may be cut short in righteousness."
And when I read "that thy work may be cut short in righteousness", I'm like, that's me. That is so, if there is a way to find something to do it quicker and faster and more efficient, I'm going to figure it out. And so that is just, I love that, like, can we 'cut short in righteousness' His work? Like let's put all of our efforts into bringing about the gathering and doing what the Lord needs us to do? I just love that part of that verse.
Ron Case 38:17
We're seeing this happen in our day, aren't we? The hastening of the work, the work being cut short in righteousness, you know, and I love verse 54, too. Lord, have mercy on all the nations of the earth; have mercy upon the rulers of our land. And he mentions the principles of the Constitution, right? If you want a cool temple dedication prayer to read besides this one, go look up the Idaho Falls temple dedication by George Albert Smith in the 1945 after,right after World War II, how he talks about our Constitution and the freedom that we have. And could it please go to all the world that their governments could adopt these principles so that their people could have freedom? It's just the kind of same language here that Joseph's using in the very first temple dedication prayer.
I love that connection, because that's what we're praying for for the world right now. So cool.
Ron Case 39:16
Yeah, we have to pray for that.
Yep, definitely. Okay, well that ,we're going to kind of end right there because in the next segment, we are going to jump into verses 61-80 and I'm excited to see what you guys have marked and Mark, I'm gonna have you kind of lead us through this; it's gonna be really fun. So we'll do that in the next segment.
Segment 4 39:34
Okay, so what we're going to jump into now is this is the end of the dedicatory prayer. We are going to talk about verses 61-80. And let's just start; I want to know what stands out to you and especially how we ended the prayer. I think that is incredible. So Mark, hit it.
Mark Christensen 39:51
Well, I have to admit Tamara, that the thing that stood out, really was right there in verse 61. And it follows nicely with what you just talked about in verse 59. But he says this about the children of Israel. We are very connected to the Bible. We are connected to the Abrahamic Covenant, like I would imagine few Christian churches aren't. I don't mean that as a bad comparison, I love anybody that's trying to do good. And, but this is what he says about the children of Israel.
61 "But thou knowest that thou hast a great love for the children of Jacob, who have been scattered upon the mountains for a long time, in a cloudy and dark day."
That's an interesting phrase, "a cloudy and dark day." And when I read that, this time, I immediately thought of the Salt Lake Temple. If you've never noticed, on the center spire, on the east side of the, toward the top, there are two what they call cloud stones. You can look it up on the internet. They're funny, kind of funny-looking, right? But they're called the clouds stones. And I love the idea that the light of the gospel - this is how I interpret it - the light of the gospel is shining through that darkness. And in II Corinthians chapter 4, verses 5 and 6, of thinking about what we are here for in the world, it says, this is Paul ofcourse,
5 "For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus, the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.
6 "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."
And I think one thing we must never lose sight of, even though he said, Oh, we know that is the temple is all about the Savior and the atonement. And that is what the main message is that we need to make sure they understand this and just, this is our Holy Temple. This is our sacred space, which it is, but it's all about bringing people unto Christ.
Ron Case 41:54
Amen. Hey, what was the, what were the verses on that?
Mark Christensen 41:58
II Corinthians chapter 4, verses 5 and 6.
Mark Christensen 42:03
And I love that. And then he says,
62 " We therefore (verse 62,) ask thee to have mercy on the children of Jacob, that Jerusalem, from this hour, may begin to be redeemed."
Anyway, there's more to it. But notice that the scriptures, the latter-day scriptures are completely connected, not just to the New Testament, but to every part of the Bible. The record is there for us. And then he does that again for the end as he cries for mercy for all of us. I'm just going to mention this. And I want to hear what you guys have to say, too, starting in verse 72-76 is probably one of my favorite segments of this last part. "Remember all thy church, O Lord". Now with, before this, he said, "Remember Joseph and his family", and then he's like, remember our connections, that's our relatives, our brothers, and our sisters, my brothers, meaning Joseph's brothers and sisters and their family.
In fact, I bracketed off 68-71. And just wrote 'personal ask', like, it's a moment where Joseph has his own personal ask for him and his family. And so for those of you listening, if you want to mark those. Just put 'personal ask'. I love those. And then 71, hit it Mark.
Mark Christensen 43:11
Yeah, then it's to the presidents, meaning those that serve in the church. And he says the presidents here, but it would be with everybody that we're serving in our wards and our stakes with. And then of course, remember all thy church, O Lord, with their families, and all their immediate connections, the sick and the afflicted, "that the kingdom which thou has set up without hands may become a great mountain, and fill the whole earth;"
Now we can go through the rest of it. But I love the vision of this, that this is really, this tiny little rock this, really the Kirtland Temple, which we look to in great affection, is not that spectacular, you know, compared to other wonderful Christian and other churches that are built all over the world. But what it represents is absolutely significant. And it has done exactly what Joseph prayed for in spreading throughout the entire world until it fills the prophecy of Daniel.
That's incredible. I love that verse 72. I didn't,I mean, I read it and liked it. But I didn't have it marked, and now I do because of what you were able to talk about it. So cool. Ron, what about you, what stood out in these verses?
Ron Case 44:24
Oh, I love all that. The church is the bride. Right? Christ is coming as the groom and that's what Joseph is alluding to here, you know, that the church can come out of the wilderness of darkness and shine forth. Now that next part of verse 73 is is a reference too, it that he uses a lot. It's probably the only Song of Solomon verse ever, you know. That was inspired right though, the one and only verse, the rest of that book is like adult religion class on marital intimacy and passion but that verse - Joseph really likes, you know.
And you know, I think, I know Joseph wished that he could be alive to be there when the Lord comes and the church would be ready. And he just prayed for that always and he wanted it. But by the end of his life, he knew it wasn't gonna happen. But that verse 76, don't you love that?
79 "That our garments may be pure, that we may be clothed upon with robes of righteousness, with palms in our hands," Hey, this is the end, you know, this is what we're looking for to happen in the, in the end, this is going to happen. The Lord is going to come back and He's going to come to his temples. He's going to visit every one of them. And hopefully, we can be there with our robes of righteousness and palms in our hands, you know, symbolically, to welcome him. There, our white handkerchiefs, and verse 78, too.
Yeah, let's talk about that.
Ron Case 45:59
Three times: "Oh, hear, oh, hear, oh hear".
And it's so cool, because we've talked this year, of the significance of threes in Hebrew. And you know, when you say something three times, it's like the MOST, like you cannot go beyond what we're saying here. It's the most we could possibly say with all of our hearts, every energy of our soul we are asking for this. I love that you brought that up.
Ron Case 46:24
He's so passionate. This is probably that spot where that little girl looks up and she sees the Prophet weeping with his hands uplifted. That's cool.
Yeah. Powerful. And I like how in verse 77, it describes Him. And I just think all of those words, I could spend a whole month just studying those words individually when he says that He is enthroned with glory, honor, power, majesty, might, dominion, truth, justice, judgment, mercy, and an infinity of fullness from everlasting to everlasting. I mean, if you were to have somebody be over you as a ruler, I'm choosing that guy, you know, I'm, I, those qualities, there's no other quality.
Ron Case 47:09
You know that Joseph Smith saw the Lord, you know it. Just like you know John the Revelator saw. This is almost word for word what John the Revelator says in the book of Revelations about his vision of God in the Celestial kingdom. It's just cool.
What's remarkable, too, is that in all of the Kirtland experience, of course, the temple was the pinnacle of that. Joseph Smith is very ope;, he wants everyone to have the experiences that he has had. He's not just saying,just come to me, because I'm the all- knowing. It is, I have seen the Lord, I know Him, and you can too. And this is how we do it. This is how he has taught us to come unto Him. And to know Him.
Well, that is a perfect ending for us right here, because we're gonna go into Doctrine and Covenants Section 110, in the next segment, and everything about what we've talked about is preparing us for what will happen seven days later. I just think it's, it is not a coincidence that we would talk about Jesus Christ. And like you said, the whole purpose of this temple is for Christ to come and return to his people. So, we'll talk about that in the next segment.
Segment 5 48:16
So go to your section heading of Doctrine and Covenants Section 110, and mark the date April 3rd, 1836. So this was a Sacrament meeting that took place a week later. And there are some pretty incredible things that happened in this sacrament meeting, it was in the Kirtland Temple, and Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery, they went to an area of the temple where there was this veil that separated them from the congregation and they offered a prayer there. And some incredible things are going to happen in this section. But before we get into that, there's a really great quote from Elder Cook. And so let's read that. Mark, I want you to read it and tell us about it.
Ron Case 48:53
Thank you, yeah. April 2018,
Mark Christensen 48:55
Elder Cook said this, "One week after the dedication of the Kirtland Temple, on Easter Sunday, the Lord appeared in a magnificent vision and accepted this temple. This occurred on April 3rd, 1836, almost exactly 182 years ago from this Easter Sunday. It was also the Passover season, one of those rare times when Easter and Passover overlap. After the vision closed, three ancient prophets appeared."
And we're going to talk about that, but I love how he, even an Apostle wants to make that.
Yeah, make that connection. I mean, here we are Easter Sunday. Again, there are no coincidences. Thank you, Mark. That's awesome. Alright, so here we go. Let's talk about Section 110. And the three of us agree we could spend an entire episode just on Section 110. It was very hard for us to condense it to only two segments, right?
Ron Case 49:50
Let's just go in, guys. Start talking about it. Ron, lead us through this segment and things that stood out to you, both of you.
Mark Christensen 49:59
Well, you know, having been to Kirtland, I'm so grateful that that temple is still there. Because you can go in there on their tour and you can see a spot on the earth, an actual place that we know of for sure that the Lord, Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ stood. He stood on that pulpit. And I remember when I was at, I was 19, I was going on my mission, my parents said, "Hey, let's go look at the church history sites."
We drove clear back East. We went to the Kirtland Temple, you know, it was owned by the Reorganized Church, and now the Community of Christ. And sometimes you walk in there, you think, Ah, we're not gonna feel the spirit in here because it's not our church, or whatever. And, oh my gosh, the guide was a believer. He believed in Joseph Smith. He pointed at that pulpit.He said, "Right here is where the Lord stood." And I just got chills, you know, I was like, Whoa. Because we've been to the sacred grove already, but I didn't know where in the sacred grove that happened. But right here's the spot where you know the Resurrected Lord stood on Easter Sunday. That's just cool to me, that the resurrection was real. And you got two more witnesses now - add Oliver Cowdery there - to the resurrected Lord. I just love that.
Ron Case 51:25
Can I make a quick, it just popped in my head, because I agree with Ron. I've been there, you know, I've been to the Kirtland Temple two times. And I've been there when there's a tour guide that just kind of takes you through, and I'm not complaining. But I've been there when one was a believer and did exactly what Ron just talked about, and it was a beautiful experience.
Mark Christensen 51:46
But Tamara, when we were at East, remember we used to have 'missionary weeks'? And we had wonderful missionaries come but when there was a convert to the church, like a converted missionary, I was always curious what brought them in, and we'd always ask. And I remember one missionary, he was really sharp, and he told us that he was actually as a non-member on a tour of the Kirtland Temple. And I remember that as he shared this, he got, he got very emotional again. When they told him of the Savior's appearance in the Kirtland Temple on that site, the Spirit, he said, he said, "I was so moved. I was so engulfed in that feeling that I knew that it had really happened." And then he sought out, obviously, and was taught and baptized and went out to testify the same to the rest of the world. It is a powerful place.
That's so cool. Well, write below where it says Section 110, somewhere there, the title for Section 110 is "Appearance of the Savior, Keys Restored". And then I also added Doctrine and Covenants 109, verse 5, and then I wrote next to it "Fulfilled", because we talked about that in Section 109. They said "a place where the Savior can come" and then He really did. So let's just read these verses in Section 110, verses 1-4. This is the appearance of Jesus Christ. So I'm so grateful for the stories you shared. So Mark we'll start with you and then Mark, Ron, and then myself will each read a verse.
Ron Case 53:12
1 "The veil was taken from our minds, and the eyes of our understanding were opened.
2 "We saw the Lord standing upon the breastwork of the pulpit,before us; and under his feet was a paved work of pure gold, in color like Amber.
3 "His eyes were as a flame of fire; the hair of His head was white like the pure snow; his countenance shown above the brightness of the sun; and his voice was as the sound of the rushing of great waters, even the voice of Jehovah, saying:
Mark Christensen 53:41
4 "I am the first and the last; I am He who liveth, I am He who was slain; I am your advocate with the Father."
Thank you. Okay, He says, "I am'"so many times in that verse and what I love about that is that is how the Lord announces Himself. He did it in the Old Testament with Moses, "I am that I am", which hello, I cannot wait till we discuss that next year for Old Testament. So we're not gonna do that today. All I want us to recognize is that He's consistent. And so in the Old Testament He says, "I am", that's who He is. And then when He announces his Messiahship to the woman at the well, if you go to John chapter 4, verse 26, and look at the footnote letter A, the actual Greek translation translates as "I am he that speaketh unto thee." So He uses this same "I am" to announce Himself, even to us in this dispensation, and I just, I love that.
Ron Case 54:34
Cool. Well, I think it's important to never take these too literally, you want to look at the words "as" and "like". They're in there a lot. You know, what does it mean that His eyes were as a flame of fire? What does it mean that his voice was, was like, the sound of rushing waters you know. It's just a comparison. Sometimes His voice is still in small. This is just one of those big, grand, you know. Not every revelation or experience is like this, this is pretty special. This is really a big one. So it's really described as best they can. But it's hard to do it.
We once had someone asking year ago, why the Savior or God is always described as having a head of hair of white snow? Like, why are they really that old? Do they really have white hair? I like, I looked up some stuff about it in the Old Testament. And then the Hebrew idea is that it just is a connotation of age. And so someone with hair that color is the oldest and the most wise, and that's what it means. So does He really have white hair? I don't know. But this tells us a lot about Him; doesn't matter.
Ron Case 55:53
When Joseph describes Moroni, remember, he says his countenance was truly white, you know lighter. It was truly like lightning. So he's trying again to make this comparison,
The brightest thing you've ever seen.
Yeah, yeah. Well, and what do you think about verse 5, then? I mean, how incredible that here He is, and the first thing he says, "(Behold,) your sins are forgiven, you are clean before me; therefore, lift up your heads and rejoice."
Ron Case 56:18
I all I know is that's the first thing I want Him to say to me when I see Him. Cuz that's what I need.
As simple as that sounds, that is so important, because one of the requirements to receive all the blessings of the temple is to be clean. That's in the dedicatory prayer. And the Lord delights in forgiving us of our sins. And whenever we sincerely repent, we are truly forgiven. And I remember and I don't know if it just sounds silly, I know because, you know, I was a grown man, and I was going to the temple. And I wasn't doing anything bad, right? But I'm also very sensitive to, you know, we're trying to make sure we're clean. And I'm crossing the street with my bag to go in the Salt Lake Temple, and in the middle of street I just had this horrible feeling, this like, and it just said, at me just in my mind, there's this feeling came in and said, "You're not worthy." I'm serious. That sounds so weird.
Mark Christensen 57:08
And as I was crossing the street, I couldn't stop because that's a bad place to stop. And I went and I kept, I kept going across the street, I kept walking. But part of me was going, and I, was revealed - reevaluatin, is there something wrong? Is there something that I am not doing? I remember as I walked and kept I walking toward the temple, I kept evaluating. Is there something that you know, I, and I remember as soon as I got in the temple, that voice, that spirit was completely gone. And it only happened once in my life but it was almost enough to keep me from going to the temple that day, to find out, is there something I need to do?
And I think it's important for people to know that 'you are clean, and the Lord is there.' And in the temple, you can know that. And if you have any questions, then go to your priesthood leader. That's why you have a temple recommend. So that if there is any question that you can, and so the adversary has nothing against you, you know, where you can kind of say, No, I was wondering about that, but but I have a common judge in Israel. And He says this is where I should be. And then you can go in there with confidence.
And so I don't know; there's a lot of people that stay out of the temple, they shouldn't, because they are more than welcome in their Father's House. So I think that right there you are clean before me. That is the world. That's the voice that I felt as soon as I walked through those doors.
Ron Case 58:26
They were literally perfectly clean at that moment. They were Celestial; they were in the presence of the Lord. And yeah, of course, Satan wants to stop us from going, so when Satan reminds you of your past that you've already been forgiven of and repented of, just remind him of his future and just go on in faith.
Amen. That was a powerful story, Mark, I appreciate you sharing that. Because I think a lot of us get caught up in that downward spiral. So thank you for sharing that. I appreciated verse 9, because then it goes, it kind of goes to us. It says,
9 "Yea the hearts of thousands and tens of thousands shall greatly rejoice in consequence of the blessings which shall be poured out, and the endowment with which my servants have been endowed in this house."
And that's your story, you know, face the temple, keep walking because the hearts of, I love it. "Thousands and tens of thousands shall greatly rejoice." It's so awesome.
Ron Case 59:19
I just love that word 'rejoice' that you highlighted in verse 9. It's in those four verses or five verses four times
He says it often, yeah.
Ron Case 59:27
And the Prophet, President Nelson is using that word a lot lately. If you listen to him in his talks about the temple, especially, he's saying this is a great time to rejoice. We've got all these temples; we're gonna put a temple nearby you, you know,? Rejoice, what a great day. But verse 8,
8 "I will appear unto my servants, and speak into them with mine own voice, if my people will keep my commandments, and do not pollute this holy house."
He has to throw that in there because you have to keep your covenants. And if you sin, you have to repent. But you can come here. And you can, I will manifest myself, verse 7, to my people in mercy in this house. You may not see Him there, but He's there. And you, it just might be the still, small voice like Mark heard. "It's okay, you're worthy. It's good. Glad you're here."
And going back to Section 109, how we started. We're all growing up unto hHm. Like, we're all growing. And so rejoice in that. Rejoice in your recommend, go get one if you don't have one, even if your temple's closed, just hold on to that recommend because, it'll open and you don't want it to be expired. So (laughs)
Ron Case 1:00:44
You know, Tammy, I remember the Brigham City Temple dedication very vividly. I took my family and we sat in the front. And I didn't bring anything to take notes on but I should have because the Temple President gave a talk. And in that talk, he said, and I'm going to quote from him if you don't mind. He said, "What if when the Savior returns to Earth, to usher in the millennium, an invitation is sent out through our priesthood leaders that the Savior is in the Temple, and we're invited to come and see him if we have a recommend." He said, I'll make you a promise should such an invitation be extended. Your bishops and Stake Presidents will not be in their offices signing recommends, they'll be on their way to the Temple."
You and I must have our recommends, He's, I mean I never forgot that. And I just remember after that talk, thinking, I am never going to let my recommend lapse even one day because what if that's the day that I got an invitation to come meet the Lord in the Temple? Because He's going to visit every one of them; He already does, right?
Oh, that's cool.
Ron Case 1:01:47
It is cool.
I'm so glad you shared that, Ron. That's a great story. Thank you. Okay, well, all of this is such a great discussion, because in the temple, amazing things happen. And so they did see the Savior. And then that vision ends. And in the next segment, another vision opens, and we're going to learn about what they saw.
Segment 6 1:02:08
So in Doctrine and Covenants, Section 110, there are two visions. The second vision opens in verse 11. And we are just going to do verses 11-16. And I'm gonna let you guys go for it. So hit it.
Ron Case 1:02:21
I mean, you've got first of all, in verse 11,
11 "(After this vision closed,) the heavens were opened again unto us, and Moses appeared before us, and committed unto us the keys of the gathering of Israel from the four parts of the earth, and the leading of the 10 tribes from the land of the North."
Now, I'm not going to touch that last part, because I don't really understand it fully, if it's a literal thing. But the point is, I think we had missionaries out in the church already for six years before this happened. But Moses is bringing these keys of gathering Israel from the four parts of the earth. We've only been gathering locally in the US and places nearby, Canada, maybe before that point, but now it's like the Lord saying to His apostles, in Acts chapter one, "now I want you to go into all the world and preach the gospel to all the nations." I think that's what Moses is doing.
Mark, tell us about Elias in verse 12.
Yeah, Mark, tell us about Elias.
Ron Case 1:03:17
Well, Elias. Elias is a forerunner. Who that exactly was we don't know. We have our opinions and we may or may not be right. But it's interesting what it says, that this Elias restored, and that is the gospel of Abraham, right? Well, let me just read it - says,
Mark Christensen 1:03:35
12 ".....Elias (appeared and) committed the dispensation of the gospel of Abraham, saying that in us and our seed all generations after us should be blessed."
Now, that is amazing. Because we always talk about the Abrahamic covenant. Well, the Abrahamic covenant is simply the gospel of Jesus Christ. And so he's saying that you are members of the church, are the fulfillment of the promise made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; that through you and your children, all of the earth will be blessed with the blessings of the gospel.
Just a quick thought about that. The birthright, remember, that's such a big deal in the Old Testament. But to make it real simple, the birthright son simply got a double portion of what everybody else got, meaning that if a person had four children, now you would divide it five ways and the oldest would get two of those portions, okay.
But where much is given, much is required. And so with that he was to take care of and bless others. Well, we are through the Abrahamic Covenant, we have received the blessings of the restored gospel: scriptures, the temple, the covenants, the priesthood, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and where that much is given, much is now required in a wonderful way. So he's saying that it is through you that the families of the earth are all going to be blessed. through you.
And just again, let me just make one clarification. If I could read this because I know that Ron and I were talking how confusing this sometimes is, these three keys. Two of them are pretty easy. But if I could read this quote, I thought it was pretty good. All right. Is that okay?
Mark Christensen 1:05:17
All right. This is from McConkie and Ostler's Commentary - Revelations on the Restoration, one of the best commentaries that's no longer in print. This is what they said,
"Were it not for the authority restored in the Kirtland Temple, the entire purpose for which the earth was created would have come to naught."
Remember Joseph Smith's revelation and Moroni quoting that to him. Here, the authority to gather Israel from her long aspersion, to lead the 10 tribes from land of the north was restored by Moses. Now the next: the authority to perform eternal marriages and bind families together for eternity was given anew by Elias. Now that's an easy connection to the Abrahamic Covenant, that through him and his seed, all the nations of the earth be blessed. And from, then the sealing power with which was Eliza, the ordinances are sealed, both for the living and the dead.
Mark, that is such a good quote, I am so glad that you shared it. And for those of you who are listening, you can find it in our show notes. Well, my question I asked both of you to think about, I want to know what your thoughts are like, Why? Why was it here that these keys are restored and not somewhere on the bank at the Susquehanna River? Like why here now?
Ron Case 1:06:33
I think it's a test. I think it's a test for these people, will you sacrifice everything you have and do what I asked you to do to build this house in your poverty? And if you will, I will reward you with this amazing, everything. I'll give you everything, all power in heaven and earth. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven. Think about that power. That's using the Savior's Atonement, in a priesthood ordinance - to bind families together forever worlds without end. And I
Mark Christensen 1:07:08
It's a fundamental way that even in the, throughout the temple endowment, in order to receive more light and truth, we're simply obedient. In fact, he says that at the beginning of the dedicatory prayer, we've done what you've asked us to do. Now, bless us as you promised us, right? Now the Lord's saying, Ah, good. Because now as I bless you, you're ready to receive more. All right? And so I think that's one reason it had to happen there. There had to be that sacrifice made, and then the blessing came, and the same is true in any way that we progress.
Well, Ron, I was going to ask because you said it's a way, and both of you both said this, it's a way to reward you. I want to know, how does the key of Elijah feel like a reward for both of you in your life?
Ron Case 1:07:51
Well, I can tell you personally, for me, it's a you know, I shared this with you in the past that our son took his own life in December. And having had a child pass away, and be worried about that child, and what's happening in the spirit world or whatever, what's going to happen in the future. The fact that my wife and I were sealed in the temple, that child is sealed to us and I could go to the temple after that child passed away and do the work for that child. Can I share a quote from Elder Faust, James E fast? You know, I've shared this before. You, you know that my child was somewhat wayward when he passed out of this life. President Faust says,
"If the repentance of a wayward child doesn't happen in this life, are the cords of sealing strong enough for them to repent in the next life? In the Doctrine and Covenants, we are told, the dead who repent will be redeemed through obedience to the ordinances of the House of God." And then he says, "There are very few whose rebellion and evil deeds are so great, that they have sinned away the power to repent. That judgment must be left up to the Lord. He tells us, "I the Lord will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men."
"Perhaps in this life–" And this is to me, this is Elijah because he's, he's transcending the veil. Right? This is the most important part of it: "Perhaps in this life, we are not given to fully understand how enduring the sealing cords of righteous parents are to their children. There very well may be more helpful sources at work than we know. I believe there is a strong familial pull as to the influence of beloved ancestors continues with us from the other side of the veil."
Holy cow. Wow.
Ron Case 1:09:45
Hey, I'm counting on that. I'm hoping for that.
Oh, Ron. I'm so grateful that you shared that quote, especially because when I see in verse 15, he'll turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, which is what happened to you as you've done your work for your son, and then the heart of your child back to you. How powerful that must feel for you and your wife. I love that. Oh, I love that so much. That's a great quote.
Mark Christensen 1:10:11
One thought, what we talked about were big deal, spiritual experiences. But for most of us, it's little tiny things, teeny tender mercies. There was a man that shared something - he was from Ireland. And if anybody hears this in Ireland, I apologize for not making sound out of your accent, and I don't do it well. I promise but, and I'm going to just kind of do it just because I want to give you the flavor of how I heard it.
This wonderful man in our stake, he was blind. But he shared something I've never forgotten. I think it applies to the temple and everything we do. He said, "You know, my sister and I, we were out picking blueberries or some kind of, I think it was blueberries. And we each were given a basket." And she said, he said, "I went looking for the biggest juiciest largest berries out there to find.
"And then when my parents said it was time to go home, we all we both came back and her basket was filled to overflowing. And mine was only half full. And she said, I wondered why she had so many berries. And then I noticed that she took every berry that was ripe, whether it was tiny or large, and her basket was full. There's a lesson in that for us spiritually he said." Now, I've never forgotten that. And I think that's true of the temple. Sometimes we fight to stay awake, but the truth of the matter is, is that every one of those little experiences will make a difference in your life.
Ron Case 1:11:34
You know, after our son passed away, it was hard. It was in, around Christmas time. And it was hard to go back to the temple in January. We knew we needed to do it. But we were going to see people we know. And we didn't want to have that hard conversation. Like, how is your family? How are your kids? You know, and so but we knew we had to go and so we just decided to go. And we sat in the back of the chapel. And of course, the guy came off the stand and he came right to us and asked us if we'd be the witness couple. And we were, what are you supposed to say? Now we're going to be in front of everyone and everyone's going to see us. But anyway, we did.
And so I think that was inspired on his part because had we not been asked to be the witness couple, we wouldn't have been in the prayer circle at the end. And when we were in the prayer circle, the other gentleman who was the other officiator who gave the prayer, said something in that prayer that I will never forget. And I've never heard it before or since. But he paused, he was an old guy. But he paused and you could tell that he was getting inspiration.
And he said, "Dear Father," I don't know if I can share this. "Please bless those in this circle who are here mourning the loss of a close loved one."
Mark Christensen 1:12:56
My wife and I are just, you know, standing there weeping. Because we knew the Lord knew us. But he told us he knew us through that man. Is the tender mercy. Just a sweet little tender mercy.
Wow, Ron, thank you for sharing that. That was an incredible moment. And for that story, Mark. Boy, I love you both so much. That was, well that's the end of our episode. Wow, that was so great. And the Spirit was so strong from the moment we started. And I knew it would be with these two sections. I mean, how could it not be? For everyone listening, just keep gathering those berries, because they really do matter. Those moments matter to all generations and for all eternity. Wow.
I just have to thank you, Ron, for sharing that personal story and Mark, for your contribution about the blueberry story. Like they tie perfectly for me. I, I'm so grateful for that. And for the spirit that those stories brought it like, gosh, I just feel, I feel peace and love and joy and patience, all of it right now. So thank you. Take a minute and just kind of gather your thoughts and is there just a quick takeaway, something that you learned today that maybe you didn't know before? Or that you're going to take with you after our discussion?
Ron Case 1:14:09
Tammy, I love that you told the story about going to the Nauvoo Temple and your recommend was one day expired. I know with all my heart that the greatest gift that we can give the Lord is to be, just to be worthy to attend His house. And if we are then the gift that He gives us, remember President Nelson saying this a year ago or so? The gift that you will receive from Him is this peace of knowing that you're worthy to meet Him whenever He comes. It doesn't matter when it is, but you'll be worthy to meet Him. If you're worthy to go to the temple. You're worthy to meet the Savior. It's not, the Lord isn't expecting perfection. He's just asking you to do these things and do, if you do them - You're good.
Oh, I love it. You just said that if you're worthy to go to the temple, you're worthy to meet the Savior.
Ron Case 1:15:03
Yeah, it's His house.
I want that framed in my home. That is good.
Mark Christensen 1:15:08
Well, I just, quick thought was what you said again. I like, I like you started off with your expired temple recommend that. And the reason that I love it is because we all make blunders. We all blow it sometimes, right, in little ways. That's not a, you know, that's very inconvenient when you're all the way in Nauvoo. But it reminded me just quickly of Joseph F. Smith's story, right. That where he sees the Prophet Joseph, where he's on his mission. He's running and he's trying to
Ron Case 1:15:36
In a dream.
Mark Christensen 1:15:37
He knocks, yeah, and he says, and Joseph Smith answers and says, "Joseph, you are late." And then he says, "Yes", because on the way there, he had taken a bath, if you remember in his dream. He said, "but I'm clean, I am clean." And the Lord, of course, opens the door. Remember the word that comes all the way through in the dedicatory prayer is mercy, and grace. Anyway, that's, so thank you. It was so good to be with you. Tamara and see,Ron's just a privilege to work with.
You two, men, you're the best. Well, my take away, I have so many notes. You can, I just wrote so fast. I have two takeaways. And from both of you when you said, I mean, Mark, when you just said that was so cool that the experiences are based on spiritual gifts, I'd never considered that. Because sometimes you have experiences with people like, "I felt the spirit so strong." And I'm like,I didn't, you know. But at the time, it doesn't mean that I'm not a less worthy person. And I just think I've had other spiritual experiences where other people haven't felt it. So I just love that.
And then Ron, I loved your idea that the combination of success is because of our power for all eternity and generations. When you pointed out that verse, all eternity, the other side of the veil. That is so cool. And your story, your story is proof of that - eternity in generations. So what a great discussion, I've loved today. Thank you. You're the best.
Well, there are so many takeaways from this episode. And so many things that I've asked, I just can't wait to hear what you guys have to say this week. If you haven't already joined our discussion group on Facebook or Instagram, go do it so that you can share what you learned from this episode and what you learned from the dedicatory prayer according to your spiritual gifts, I think that was so cool. Go there, because it's also a great place to study. And then if you have any questions, I try to answer them.
And if I can't, our whole community will which has been fun. So comment on the post that relates to the lesson at the end of the week. Usually on a Saturday, we post a big takeaway asking for what your takeaway was. You can get to both our Facebook and Instagram by going to the show notes for this episode on ldsliving.com/SundayonMonday. And now you're going to really want to go there, because that's where we're going to have a link to all the references that we used today, all the quotes that we used, as well as a complete transcript of this whole discussion. So go check that out.
The Sunday on Monday study group is a Deseret Bookshelf Plus Original brought to you by LDS Living. It's written and hosted by me, Tammy Uzelac Hall and today our so fabulous study your participants were Ron Case and Mark Christensen and you can find more information about these friends at LDS Living,comm/slashSundayonMonday. Our podcast is produced by Katie Lambert and me. It is recorded and mixed by Mix at Six Studios and our Executive Producer is Erin Hallstrom. Thanks for being here. We'll see you next week.
And boy, I hope you remember after today's discussion that God loves you and you really ARE his favorite.
Transcribed by Jenee Uzelac