I came across some references to early Christian ritual vestments this morning in Matthew Brown’s The Gate of Heaven. He cited The Awe-Inspiring Rites of Initiation by Edward Yarnold, and The Archæology of Baptism by Wolfred N. Cote. I looked up these references and they were intriguing in describing an early Christian practice of face veiling during initiation rites: [Read more…]
I’ve built an online store for TempleStudy.com using Amazon.com, and today is its grand opening! I did this primarily for three reasons:
- Readily available Temple-related Products: All the products that I’ve been able to find that have to do with LDS temples or ancient temples from Amazon.com I have individually selected and gathered together, sorted, and categorized. They include temple products from many categories including books (44 items), home & garden (191 items), office (18 items), toys & games (29 items), music (22 items), apparel (8 items), jewelry (32 items), DVD (6 items), and miscellaneous (26 items). If you are looking for a temple-themed book, tie tack, stationery, photograph, music, game, or other such item, the TempleStudy.com store is a great place to start looking because I’ve already narrowed down the search for you. The store itself currently includes a total of 376 temple-related products, but there are also many more products available from the “Listmania!” or “Similar Items” links on the right-hand side of the store which change and rotate automatically as you browse the store.
- No Anti-Mormon Material: You can browse the entire TempleStudy.com store without a worry of running across any critical propaganda, which can often become a distraction from the positive, faith-promoting material that you’re looking for, and many times it is hard to detect from the cover or description alone. I have hand-picked every item here, and have filtered out all of that diversion. Have peace of mind when you are looking for just the right temple product. Note, however, that I can’t choose what appears in the Listmania! or Similar Items lists.
- Supporting TempleStudy.com: A portion of each sale from this store will go to help support TempleStudy.com. [Read more…]
The account of the garden of Eden in Genesis is a very interesting story indeed. We learn much about the experiences of our first parents and their interactions with God. It was a very intimate relationship, one in which God walked and talked with Adam and Eve in the garden (Gen. 3:8).
When Adam was first placed in the garden of Eden, he was given a charge to take care of it:
And the Lord God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. (Gen. 2:15)
The Hebrew word for “dress” is avad, which means to work, labor or serve. Closely related is the word avodah, which means service. Even at this early date man was given a stewardship over the earth, and to take good care of it, even while it was still paradisaical! When Adam and Eve transgressed the law of God and fell they were sent from the garden into the dreary world, but with the same charge of stewardship: [Read more…]
I was driving in my car on Saturday listening to a radio program called “The Other Side” with Steve Godfrey. Steve believes himself to be a psychic medium, someone through whom people can connect with loved ones who have passed on to the “other side.” I do not deny the possibility of communicating with those who are on the other side of the veil, as many have done just that within the Church, but the way these so-called psychics say they connect with relatives on the other side just seems a little shady to me. To me it seems like more of a show than any actual communication going on – Steve asks the person lots of questions in order to divine what the person on the “other side” might be saying. A lot of “wait a minute,” and “hold on,” and “just a second,” are thrown into the mix as Steve receives his revelations from passed loved ones. His website says his “mission in life is to help you believe that there is life after death, and love eternal,” which is a good cause, but I am very skeptical of his methods and motives.
But he said something on the program that night which resonated with me, and with LDS beliefs. [Read more…]
A reader has asked, “Do you have any insight into what happened to the washing of feet? Could the washing of feet have been preparatory to the full ordinance of washing as we now have it in the initiatories?”
The ordinance of washing of feet is still performed in the temple, for it is a restored ordinance, but it is part of the culminating sealing ordinances which are reserved for those who make their calling and election sure through faith. Temple scholar Matthew Brown has offered this:
The Lord mentioned in a revelation on 1 November 1831 that he had granted unto his disciples the authority to “seal both on earth and in heaven” (D&C 1:8). During the same month he indicated that God the Father would reveal to his servants who should be sealed up “unto eternal life” by this power (D&C 68:12). The ordinance of the washing of feet was then introduced by the Lord as the means whereby someone could be rendered “clean from the blood of this generation” (D&C 88:138-141), and when Joseph Smith administered this ordinance, he stated that those who received it were not only “clean” in a ritual sense but were also “sealed up unto eternal life” (HC, 1:323-24; see also MD, 829-32). ((Matthew B. Brown, The Gate of Heaven, 235.))