In President Packer’s characteristic warmth and authoritative manner, he examines in appropriate detail the doctrines and practices surrounding the holy temples that dot the world. This timely and valuable book will help members at every stage of life as it focuses on a temple’s purpose, beauty, and the blessings it offers.
Part one offers the Lord’s invitation: “Come to the temple.” It sets forth the requirements for attendance—basically, preparation through worthiness—and the attitude and behavior appropriate for those attending that holy place on the first and all subsequent occasions. Part two deals in brief fashion with the ancient temples, then turns to the central human figure in the work of the temple—Elijah the Prophet, who anciently held the keys relative to the sealing power of the priesthood. Malachi’s prophecy and the human tradition about Elijah’s return in the latter days are impressively set forth.
Elijah’s return and all that it means for the happiness and salvation of man-kind are the themes of parts three and four. Following early Restoration scenes, the Kirtland Temple is built at great personal sacrifice. Dedicated, it fulfills a major purpose in the glorious visions of April 3, 1836, the Savior himself introducing three heavenly beings who then convey priesthood keys. One of these is Elijah. Thereafter the revelations progressively develop the doctrine of temple work for both the living and the dead; under divine direction temple ceremonies are introduced, and participants eagerly flock to the Nauvoo Temple; through President Wilford Woodruff the supporting work of lineage linking is clarified by revelation; and the spirit of Elijah is manifest both in and out of the Church as genealogical research and temple work blossom, temples multiply, and those beyond the veil assist those involved in the work here.