“Some day we will live the law of consecration again, but until then we must be ‘willing’ to live it.”
“It is Church doctrine that the full Law of Consecration was suspended by the Lord through the Prophet in 1834.”
“My belief is that things will get progressively worse until the actual Second Coming when Christ will institute the law of consecration.”
Have you ever heard these types of statements before? Each one comes from active, church-going, temple-attending, members of the Church. Each of them was said to me in conversation over the past two weeks. Each one is also, unfortunately, untrue. [Read more…]
To continue my research I wanted to know as accurately as possible the story about this symbol, the “seal of Melchizedek,” as it was used in the San Diego Temple. I couldn’t find a good account online, so I decided to go to the source. Who better would know than the design architect of the temple? So I gave him a call. [Read more…]
Video created by the LDS Church to commemorate and celebrate the 30th anniversary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ action in June 1978 to extend its lay priesthood to men of all races – entitled “He Inviteth Us All.” The revelation from God came quite clear from heaven to prophets and apostles of God, gathered in the upper rooms of the Salt Lake Temple. I imagine the revelatory experience was somewhat like Peter’s when he was commanded by God to take the gospel to the Gentiles, previous to which it had been taken only to the Jews (Acts 10:9-48). Surely the Lord God has His own timetable (Isa. 55:8).
When you come to the temple you will love your family with a deeper love than you have ever felt before. The temple is about families. . . . It extends to parents, brothers and sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, forebears, and especially our grandchildren! This is the Spirit of Elijah, which is the spirit of family history work; and when inspired by the Holy Ghost, it prompts the turning of the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers. Because of the priesthood, husbands and wives are sealed together, children are sealed to their parents for eternity so the family is eternal and will not be separated at death. ((Richard H. Winkel, “The Temple Is about Families,” Ensign, Nov. 2006, 9))
Other parts of Elder Winkel’s talk are equally good:
Like you, I don’t want to lose any of my children. I want to be together forever with all of my family. The temple gives all of us extra hope of continuing and improving these relationships, even after this life. Sealings bestowed in the temple promise additional blessings.
“The Prophet Joseph Smith declared-and he never taught more comforting doctrine-that the eternal sealings of faithful parents and the divine promises made to them for valiant service in the Cause of Truth, would save not only themselves, but likewise their posterity. Though some of the sheep may wander, the eye of the Shepherd is upon them, and sooner or later they will feel the tentacles of Divine Providence reaching out after them and drawing them back to the fold. Either in this life or the life to come, they will return. They will have to pay their debt to justice; they will suffer for their sins; and may tread a thorny path; but if it leads them at last, like the penitent Prodigal, to a loving and forgiving father’s heart and home, the painful experience will not have been in vain.” . . .
President Hinckley has told us that “just as our Redeemer gave His life as a vicarious sacrifice for all men, and in so doing became our Savior, even so we, in a small measure, when we engage in proxy work in the temple, become as saviors to those on the other side who have no means of advancing unless something is done in their behalf by those on earth.” . . .
The temple is a place to know the Father and the Son. It is a place where we experience the divine presence. The Prophet Joseph Smith made this plea: “I advise all to … search deeper and deeper into the mysteries of Godliness.” And where shall we search? In the house of God. ((ibid.))
Most people in the Church by now are probably familiar with the hymn that Janice Kapp Perry wrote a couple of months ago to accompany a poem written by President Hinckley. President Hinckley published his poem in the May 1988 Ensign article entitled, “The Empty Tomb Bore Testimony,” but he notes that he penned the words many years previous to that at a friend’s funeral.
If you’ve received an email about the hymn you might already know the story behind it. If not, head over to Meridian Magazine which has an article posted detailing the creation of this hymn, including links to the sheet music. The circumstances surrounding the production of the hymn are certainly a “tender mercy” of the Lord, as Janice Kapp Perry describes it. She received official approval of the arranged hymn in the mail from President Hinckley the day after his death.
I think this hymn epitomizes the LDS belief and feelings surrounding mortal death. To members of the LDS Church death is nothing to fear, but a passing into and a beginning of a different stage of our existence. It is progression. Death is not the end, but a beginning of greater things! These doctrines and principles could not be taught more clearly and purely than in the Lord’s temples which dot the earth today. President Hinckley was pivotal in nearly tripling the number of these sacred edifices around the world.
This hymn was sung by the Tabernacle Choir at President Hinckley’s funeral (video link). Since then, Janice Kapp Perry has just recently produced vocal and instrumental recordings of the song with Prime Recordings, Inc. These recordings are very well done. She has made them freely available for all, so I have posted the vocal here for your listening:
What Is This Thing That Men Call Death?
Words by Gordon B. Hinckley, Music by Janice Kapp Perry
What is this thing that men call death,
This quiet passing in the night?
’Tis not the end, but genesis
Of better worlds and greater light.
O God, touch Thou my aching heart,
And calm my troubled, haunting fears.
Let hope and faith, transcendent, pure,
Give strength and peace beyond my tears.
There is no death, but only change
With recompense for victory won;
The gift of Him who loved all men,
The Son of God, the Holy One.