Criticism of Mormonism/Websites/MormonThink/The Temple

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Response to MormonThink page "The Temple"

A FairMormon Analysis of: MormonThink, a work by author: Anonymous
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Response to claims made on MormonThink page "The Temple"

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Response to claim: "a strong connection between Masonry and the LDS temple ceremony"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

A detailed comparison between the endowment and Masonry shows beyond any doubt a strong connection between Masonry and the LDS temple ceremony.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim is based upon correct information - The author is providing knowledge concerning some particular fact, subject, or event

Early Church leaders did believe that they had "the true Masonry."


Question: What criticisms are associated with the temple ritual and its relationship to Freemasonry?

Critics of the LDS Church often point to similarities between the rituals of Freemasonry and the LDS temple endowment

Critics of the LDS Church often point to similarities between the rituals of Freemasonry and the LDS temple endowment and claim that since Joseph Smith was initiated as a Freemason in Nauvoo, Illinois shortly before he introduced the full endowment to the Saints (as opposed to the partial endowment given in the Kirtland Temple), he must have incorporated elements of the Masonic rites into his own ceremony. Implicit in this charge is the idea that Joseph Smith's ritual was not revealed to him by God and thus not a legitimate restoration of ancient Israelite and early Christian ordinances.

It is worthwhile to note that these critics are also often critical of Freemasonry, and thus attempt guilt by association.

Some of the endowment was developed and introduced in the weeks following Joseph Smith's initiation as a Master Mason, but other elements were developed prior to his association with Freemasonry

While it is true that some of the endowment was developed and introduced in the weeks following Joseph Smith's initiation as a Master Mason. This oversimplifies the issue considerably. The endowment and other parts of LDS temple worship developed slowly over a period of years. It did not happen all at once. Joseph Smith's critics want to label him as an intellectual thief by claiming that he stole some of the ritual elements of Freemasonry in order to create the Nauvoo-era temple endowment ceremony. The greatest obstacles to this theory are the facts that

  1. Joseph Smith claimed direct revelation from God regarding the Nauvoo-era endowment,
  2. Joseph Smith knew a great deal about the Nauvoo-era endowment ceremony long before the Nauvoo period—and thus long before his entry into the Masonic fraternity, and
  3. the Nauvoo-era temple endowment ceremony has numerous exacting parallels to the initiation ceremonies of ancient Israelite and early Christian kings and priests—parallels which cannot be found among Freemasons.

Furthermore, Joseph's contemporaries saw the parallels to Masonry clearly, and yet no one charged him with pilfering.

In order to understand this issue, a few facts need to be understood:

  1. Joseph Smith, Jr. was initiated as a Freemason in Nauvoo, Illinois on the 15th and 16th of March 1842; his brother Hyrum and (possibly) his father Joseph Sr. were Masons before the Church's organization in April 1830.
  2. A few of the early leaders of the Church were Masons before the Church's organization while many others were initiated into the Masonic institution after the Prophet was in 1842.
  3. Masonry was a well-known social institution in mid-19th century America.
  4. There are similarities between the rituals of Freemasonry and those of the LDS Temple endowment. These similarities center around
  • the use of a ritual drama—the story of Hiram Abiff is used by the Masons, while the LDS endowment uses the story of Adam and Eve and the creation (the LDS versions have parallels to ancient Israelite temple worship).
  • some similar hand actions in the course of the rituals (the LDS versions having distinct parallels to ancient Israelite temple worship and early Christian usage).

Symbolist F. L. Brink suggested that Joseph Smith successfully provided an "innovative and intricate symbology" that suited well the psychic needs of his followers. [1]


Question: When did Joseph Smith demonstrate knowledge of the elements of the endowment ritual?

Joseph Smith knew of Nauvoo-era endowment ritual, phraseology, vestments, and theology at least a year before he ever became a Freemason

Critics have noted that Joseph's initiation into Freemasonry (15–16 March 1842) predates his introduction of the full temple endowment among the Saints (4 May 1842). They thus claim that Masonry was a necessary element for Joseph's self-generated "revelation" of the Nauvoo-era temple ceremonies.

But one LDS author draws attention to the fact that there is much more to the history of the endowment restoration than critics of the Church are willing to admit.

Plenty of evidence...is available that Joseph Smith had a detailed knowledge of the Nauvoo temple ceremonies long before he introduced them in May 1842 and long before he set foot inside a Masonic hall...While Joseph Smith was translating the book of Abraham from Egyptian papyri, he wrote a series of short explanations for three of the illustrations that accompanied his translation. The Prophet noted that in Facsimile 2, figures 3 and 7 were related in some manner to "the grand Key-words of the Holy Priesthood" and "the sign of the Holy Ghost." When he came to figure 8, he explained that this area on the Egyptian drawing contained "writings that cannot be revealed unto the world; but is to be had in the Holy Temple of God."...

Other writers have used the Facsimile 2 material to sharpen the chronological argument against Joseph Smith. Facsimile 2 and its temple-related explanations were first printed in the 15 March 1842 edition of the Times and Seasons, the same day that the Prophet received the first of three Masonic initiation rites. Latter-day Saints have traditionally argued that this issue of the newspaper was published during the day while the Prophet's Masonic initiation did not occur until that evening. Thus Joseph Smith must have had temple knowledge before he had Masonic knowledge. But critics point out that the 15 March issue of the paper was not actually published until 19 March, several days after the Prophet witnessed the Masonic ceremonies.

This is where terminology becomes crucial. Some claim that the phrases employed by Joseph Smith in the Facsimile 2 explanations are Masonic and that it was not until several days after his Masonic induction that Joseph Smith "first spoke of 'certain key words and signs belonging to the priesthood.'" These critics assume the terms are necessarily "Masonic," yet it must be remembered that Freemasonry's rites are little more than borrowed baggage. Then what about the supposedly incriminating timing of these incidents? This is precisely the point at which the entire argument falls apart. On 5 May 1841 William Appleby paid a visit to Joseph Smith, who read to him the revelation on temple ordinances, now identified as Doctrine and Covenants 124, that was received 19 January 1841. After the two men discussed baptism for the dead, the Prophet got out his collection of Egyptian papyrus scrolls and, while exhibiting Facsimile 2, explained to Appleby that part of the drawing was related to "the Lord revealing the Grand key words of the Holy Priesthood, to Adam in the garden of Eden, as also to Seth, Noah, Melchizedek, Abraham, and to all whom the Priesthood was revealed."

It is also clear from Doctrine and Covenants 124 that Joseph Smith was well aware of the main ritual elements of the Nauvoo endowment ceremony at least as early as 19 January 1841. (See D&C :124.) [2]

The note from Appleby is found in his journal under the date of 5 May 1841, a little less than a year before Joseph's initiation into the Masonic Lodge at Nauvoo. [3] There is a great deal more historical evidence that the Prophet Joseph Smith knew of Nauvoo-era endowment ritual, phraseology, vestments, and theology long before he ever became a Freemason.

In evidence of this fact, we find that upon his initiation into Masonry Joseph Smith was already explaining things which the Masons themselves did not comprehend. According to one witness:

"the Prophet explained many things about the rites that even Masons do not pretend to understand but which he made most clear and beautiful." [4]


Question: Why would Joseph Smith incorporate Masonic elements into the temple ritual?

There are two aspects of temple worship: The teaching of the endowment, and the presentation of the endowment

In order to understand the relationship between the temple endowment and Freemasonry it is useful to consider the temple experience. In the temple, participants are confronted with ritual in a form which is unknown in LDS worship outside of that venue. In the view of some individuals the temple endowment is made up of two parts:

  1. The teachings of the endowment, i.e., the doctrines taught and the covenants made with God.
  2. The method of presenting the endowment, or the "ritual" mechanics themselves.

It is in the ritual presentation of the endowment teachings and covenants that the similarities between the LDS temple worship and Freemasonry are the most apparent. The question is, why would this be the case?

Joseph's challenge was to find a method of presenting the endowment that would be effective

It is the opinion of some people that in developing the endowment Joseph Smith faced a problem. He wished to communicate, in a clear and effective manner, some different (and, in some cases, complex) religious ideas. These included such abstract concepts as

  • the nature of creation (matter being organized and not created out of nothing)
  • humanity's relationship to God and to each other
  • eternal marriage and exaltation in the afterlife

The theory is that Joseph needed to communicate these ideas to a diverse population; some with limited educational attainments, many of whom were immigrants; several with only modest understanding of the English language; all of whom possessed different levels of intellectual and spiritual maturity—but who needed to be instructed through the same ceremony.

Ritual and repetition are important teaching tools

Joseph Smith's very brief experience with Freemasonry before the introduction of the full LDS endowment may have reminded him of the power of instruction through ritual and repetition. Some people believe that Joseph may have seized upon Masonic tools as teaching devices for the endowment's doctrines and covenants during the Nauvoo era. Other people are of the opinion that since these elements were previously present in the worship of the Kirtland Temple they were not 'borrowed' by the Prophet at all.

Regardless, the use of symbols was characteristic of Joseph Smith's era; it was not unique to him or Masonry:

Symbols on buildings, in literature, stamped on manufactured goods, etc. were not endemic to Mormons and Masons but were common throughout all of mid-nineteenth century American society (as even a cursory inspection of books, posters, buildings and photos of the periods will bear out.) So, assuming [Joseph] Smith felt a need to communicate specific principles to his Saints, he might naturally develop a set of easily understood symbols as were already in familiar use about him. [5]


Question: Why is confidentiality associated with the temple ordinances?

The LDS temple ceremony was, and still is, considered to be sacred, and was not to be exposed to the view or discussion of outsiders

Joseph Smith was of the view that some of the Saints were not good at keeping religious confidences:

The reason we do not have the secrets of the Lord revealed unto us, is because we do not keep them but reveal them; we do not keep our own secrets, but reveal our difficulties to the world, even to our enemies, then how would we keep the secrets of the Lord? I can keep a secret till Doomsday. [6]

A few of the early leaders of the Church pointed out that one of the aims of Masonry was to teach adherents proper respect for promises of confidentiality. [7] For instance,

  • Joseph Smith: "The secret of Masonry is to keep a secret." [8]
  • Brigham Young: "The main part of Masonry is to keep a secret." [9]

This institutionalized Masonic principle was a trait that would be necessary for the Saints to incorporate into their lives once they were endowed, because certain elements of the temple ritual were considered to be very sacred and were not to be divulged to the uninitiated. This may be the key for understanding why the Prophet encouraged so many of the Nauvoo-era Saints to join the Masonic brotherhood.


Question: How do the goals of Freemasonry compare to those of the Latter-day Saint endowment?

The goals of Masonry and the LDS endowment are not the same

It is worth noting that some of the similarities between the endowment and Freemasonry which are highlighted by Church critics are only superficial. For example, critics typically focus on the common use of architectural elements on the Salt Lake Temple and in Masonry, even though the endowment makes no reference to such elements. In almost every case, shared symbolic forms have different meanings, and thus should not be seen as exact parallels.

It should also be emphasized that the goals of Masonry and the LDS endowment are not the same. Both teach important truths, but the truths they teach are different. Masonry teaches of man's relationship to his fellow men and offers no means of salvation; i.e., it is not a religion. The temple endowment, on the other hand, teaches of man's relationship to God, and Latter-day Saints consider it to be essential for exaltation in the world to come.


Question: Where did 19th-Century Latter-day Saints believe that Freemasonry came from?

It was a common 19th century belief of both Mormons and Masons that Masonry had it origins in the Temple of Solomon

The Saints of Joseph Smith's era accepted the then-common belief that Masonry ultimately sprang from Solomon's temple. Thus, Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball understood Masonry to be a corrupted form of a pristine ancient temple rite. [10] One author later wrote that masonry as an "institution dates its origins many centuries back, it is only a perverted Priesthood stolen from the Temples of the Most High." [11]

It was a common 19th century belief of both Mormons and Masons that Masonry had it origins in the Temple of Solomon. A few Masons cling to this view even today. An opinion not, it turns out, supported by the historical evidence but it was only an opinion. When studying the relationship between Mormonism and the fraternal order known as Freemasonry it is important to acknowledge and understand the perspective expressed by nineteenth century Latter-day Saints. Below are seven examples of what some Mormons thought about where the rites and teachings of the Masons came from (some of these people were also Masons). Notice that some of these quotes purport to reflect the view of the Prophet Joseph Smith on this subject.

Early Latter-day Saints' views of Freemasonry

Joseph Fielding wrote during the Nauvoo period:

Many have joined the Masonic institution. This seems to have been a stepping stone or preparation for something else, the true origin of Masonry. This I have also seen and rejoice in it.... I have evidence enough that Joseph is not fallen. I have seen him after giving, as I before said, the origin of Masonry. [12]

Heber C. Kimball wrote of the endowment:

We have received some precious things through the Prophet on the Priesthood which would cause your soul to rejoice. I cannot give them to you on paper for they are not to be written so you must come and get them for yourself...There is a similarity of Priesthood in Masonry. Brother Joseph says Masonry was taken from Priesthood but has become degenerated. But many things are perfect. [13]

Thus, to Joseph's contemporaries, there was much more to the LDS temple endowment than just warmed-over Freemasonry. None of Joseph's friends complained that he had simply adapted Masonic ritual for his own purposes. Rather, they were aware of the common ritual elements, but understood that Joseph had restored something that was both ritually and theologically ancient and God-given.

Early Church leaders believed that Freemasonry was an "apostate" form of the Endowment

  • Willard Richards (16 March 1842): “Masonry had its origin in the Priesthood. A hint to the wise is sufficient.” [14]
  • Heber C. Kimball (17 June 1842): “There is a similarity of priesthood in Masonry. Brother Joseph [Smith] says Masonry was taken from priesthood.” [15]
  • Benjamin F. Johnson (1843): Joseph Smith “told me Freemasonry, as at present, was the apostate endowments, as sectarian religion was the apostate religion.” [16]
  • Joseph Fielding (December 1843): The LDS temple ordinances are “the true origin of Masonry.” [17]
  • Saints in Salt Lake City (1849–50): “Masonry was originally of the church, and one of its favored institutions, to advance the members in their spiritual functions. It had become perverted from its designs.” [18]
  • Heber C. Kimball (9 November 1858): “The Masonry of today is received from the apostasy. . . . They have now and then a thing that is correct, but we have the real thing.” [19]
  • Church Authorities (1842–1873): “The Mormon leaders have always asserted that Free-Masonry was a . . . degenerate representation of the order of the true priesthood.” [20]


Response to claim: "We were somewhat startled to find that FAIR admits that Masonry does not date back to Bible Times"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

We were somewhat startled to find that FAIR admits that Masonry does not date back to Bible Times. They openly state that the Masonry Rituals that resemble the LDS Temple Ceremony date from the 1700s and definitely were not used in Solomon's temple.
....

Many of the prophets and early leaders of the Church unmistakably said that Masonry had the true temple ceremony from Solomon's time.

Heber C. Kimball, a Mason himself said, "We have the true Masonry. The Masonry of today is received from the apostasy which took place in the days of Solomon, and David. They have now and then a thing that is correct, but we have the real thing."

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

Why is MormonThink "startled" that FairMormon agrees with historical facts?


Question: Where did 19th-Century Latter-day Saints believe that Freemasonry came from?

It was a common 19th century belief of both Mormons and Masons that Masonry had it origins in the Temple of Solomon

The Saints of Joseph Smith's era accepted the then-common belief that Masonry ultimately sprang from Solomon's temple. Thus, Brigham Young and Heber C. Kimball understood Masonry to be a corrupted form of a pristine ancient temple rite. [21] One author later wrote that masonry as an "institution dates its origins many centuries back, it is only a perverted Priesthood stolen from the Temples of the Most High." [22]

It was a common 19th century belief of both Mormons and Masons that Masonry had it origins in the Temple of Solomon. A few Masons cling to this view even today. An opinion not, it turns out, supported by the historical evidence but it was only an opinion. When studying the relationship between Mormonism and the fraternal order known as Freemasonry it is important to acknowledge and understand the perspective expressed by nineteenth century Latter-day Saints. Below are seven examples of what some Mormons thought about where the rites and teachings of the Masons came from (some of these people were also Masons). Notice that some of these quotes purport to reflect the view of the Prophet Joseph Smith on this subject.

Early Latter-day Saints' views of Freemasonry

Joseph Fielding wrote during the Nauvoo period:

Many have joined the Masonic institution. This seems to have been a stepping stone or preparation for something else, the true origin of Masonry. This I have also seen and rejoice in it.... I have evidence enough that Joseph is not fallen. I have seen him after giving, as I before said, the origin of Masonry. [23]

Heber C. Kimball wrote of the endowment:

We have received some precious things through the Prophet on the Priesthood which would cause your soul to rejoice. I cannot give them to you on paper for they are not to be written so you must come and get them for yourself...There is a similarity of Priesthood in Masonry. Brother Joseph says Masonry was taken from Priesthood but has become degenerated. But many things are perfect. [24]

Thus, to Joseph's contemporaries, there was much more to the LDS temple endowment than just warmed-over Freemasonry. None of Joseph's friends complained that he had simply adapted Masonic ritual for his own purposes. Rather, they were aware of the common ritual elements, but understood that Joseph had restored something that was both ritually and theologically ancient and God-given.

Early Church leaders believed that Freemasonry was an "apostate" form of the Endowment

  • Willard Richards (16 March 1842): “Masonry had its origin in the Priesthood. A hint to the wise is sufficient.” [25]
  • Heber C. Kimball (17 June 1842): “There is a similarity of priesthood in Masonry. Brother Joseph [Smith] says Masonry was taken from priesthood.” [26]
  • Benjamin F. Johnson (1843): Joseph Smith “told me Freemasonry, as at present, was the apostate endowments, as sectarian religion was the apostate religion.” [27]
  • Joseph Fielding (December 1843): The LDS temple ordinances are “the true origin of Masonry.” [28]
  • Saints in Salt Lake City (1849–50): “Masonry was originally of the church, and one of its favored institutions, to advance the members in their spiritual functions. It had become perverted from its designs.” [29]
  • Heber C. Kimball (9 November 1858): “The Masonry of today is received from the apostasy. . . . They have now and then a thing that is correct, but we have the real thing.” [30]
  • Church Authorities (1842–1873): “The Mormon leaders have always asserted that Free-Masonry was a . . . degenerate representation of the order of the true priesthood.” [31]


Response to claim: Joseph Smith "may have introduced the temple ceremony as a way of keeping polygamy a secret"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

The temple ceremony coincided with plural marriage as practiced by the early saints. As Joseph did not want to let the masses know about polygamy, he may have introduced the temple ceremony as a way of keeping polygamy a secret while introducing select members into the practice of plural marriage. As an important element of the temple ceremony is to never reveal what happens in the temple, even under penalty of death (before 1990), this would help keep the polygamous marriages a secret by the people that knew about them.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim is false

The claim is ridiculous: hundreds of people received their endowment in the Nauvoo temple before heading west, and most of them were not practicing plural marriage. How does this accomplish "keeping polygamy a secret"?


Question: Did Joseph Smith create the temple ceremony as a way of teaching polygamy to certain members while keeping it a secret from the general public?

Hundreds received their endowment prior to traveling west, most of whom did not practice plural marriage

The temple ceremony coincided with plural marriage as practiced by the early saints. This has caused some to speculate that Joseph Smith create the temple ceremony as a way of teaching polygamy to certain members while keeping it a secret from the general public?

The endowment was given to hundreds of people before the Nauvoo Temple was abandoned and the Saints traveled west. Nobody has ever claimed that all of those were involved in plural marriage. It would have been impossible to use the endowment to teach polygamy to only "certain members" while keeping it from the rest. Everyone who received their endowment would have known about it.

In fact, in 1864 George A Smith indicated that at the first endowment, approximately 60 of those who participated apostatized.

George A. Smith, General Conference, Thursday, April 7, 1864 forenoon. [Deseret News 13. 29 April 13, 1864): 224-5; Millennial Star 26. 23 (June 4, 1864): 353-7; Journal History 6-10 April, 1864]. Elder George A. Smith delivered a discourse on the influence of false spirits. The Gospel was preached to accomplish the salvation of the people, and with that object they received it, and knew that they had the world afterwards to contend with; yet, many had permitted some trifling, unimportant object thrown in their path, to cause them to stumble. He had been acquainted with the Church almost from the beginning, and dark clouds had almost constantly attended its growth and progress….After the first endowment was given, some sixty persons apostatized and essayed to form a new church, that would get along easier with the world than the Church established by the commandment of God, but they had dropped into oblivion. [32]

One of those first to leave the Church were the van Deusen couple. Craig Foster wrote about them, and included this comment, taken from their book, published almost immediately after they left:

The initiates are led through a series of rooms which are said to represent the Garden of Eden and the fall of Adam and Eve, as well as what he describes as "a Burlesque on all the Sects." The final room, representing the celestial kingdom of God, is the setting for the teaching of the "Spiritual Wife Doctrine," or polygamy. The people are told that all former marriage contracts, as well as the laws of the land, have been "cut asunder"[1]: "It is now the woman's privilege to choose whom she sees fit; if she likes the one she has been living with, she can keep him; if not, she is at liberty to ship him and take another; and it is the man's privilege to have one, two, four, ten, or twenty . . ."[33]


Response to claim: "Another possibility is that Joseph believed in magical and mystical things such as seer stones; he believed that putting symbols on clothing would protect him from harm"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

Why would Joseph Smith want to wear garments?...One answer of course, is that God commanded Joseph to institute the wearing of garments. Another possibility is that Joseph believed in magical and mystical things such as seer stones; he believed that putting symbols on clothing would protect him from harm. When Joseph was killed, they found a Jupiter Talisman on his body. This supports his belief in magical ornaments and symbols.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

This is simply pure speculation with no basis in anything found in contemporary sources. There is not one shred of evidence to support this assertion.


Response to claim: "Garments are the Mormon burqas - just worn on the inside"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

Non-Mormons don't believe that the LDS garments are required by God, but rather than feel sorry for garment-wearing members, they just think we're strange. Garments are the Mormon burqas - just worn on the inside.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

This is an utterly absurd claim.


Question: Is the Mormon temple garment simply "magic underwear"?

Latter-day Saints wear the garment as a private reminder of covenants and promises made to God

Hostile critics of the Restoration often mock the Latter-day Saint practice of wearing temple garments. They refer to these ritual items of clothing as "magic underwear" or "Mormon burquas' in order to shock, ridicule and offend.

Latter-day Saints wear the garment as a private reminder of covenants and promises made to God. The blessings and protection which derive from it come by God's will through keeping the covenants associated with it. The promised protection is primarily spiritual, but this does not mean that God may not also grant physical protection as he sees fit. In either case, the blessing is not because of the clothing, it is because of what the clothing represents.

Latter-day Saints are in good company with the early Christians, who used similar clothing as part of their worship. Other religions likewise use items of clothing which they consider to have sacred significance.

To mock or demean these items is in the poorest taste, and not worthy of anyone who claims to be a disciple of Christ. Patriotic readers might consider how they would feel if someone took a flag ("a mere piece of cloth") and burned or soiled it in anger at a protest or demonstrations. Our negative reaction to this is not the disrespect to an object, but what the object represents.

Members of the LDS Church are often subjected to critics—generally conservative Protestants—who picket their meetings and temple dedications. It is not unusual for such protesters to openly display Latter-day Saint temple garments, subject them to ridicule, and treat them with great disrespect. Protesters and authors alike have insisted that the Mormon use of temple garments is an unChristian and unbiblical practice. (See here for photos and videos of several anti-Mormon demonstrations. Click here for a graphic example of disrespect to an item considered sacred by Latter-day Saints)

Such treatment of an object connected with sacred worship is highly offensive to Latter-day Saints. Only an attack on the character or name of Jesus Christ would be worse, since the garment is closely connected with the Savior's own teachings and attributes. (See Evelyn T. Marshall, "Garments," in Daniel H. Ludlow, ed., Encyclopedia of Mormonism [New York: Macmillan, 1992], 534-35).

Misrepresentations of the purpose of the garment by critics

An anti-Mormon protester at April 2004 LDS General Conference criticizes the LDS use of the temple garment.

In the critical book Mormonism 101. Examining the Religion of the Latter-day Saints, under the heading of Pre-endowment Instructions, the authors enter into a discussion on the nature of the 'temple garments.' In regard to this vestment, the authors write: "By wearing the garments at all times, it is taught that the individual Mormon, depending on his or her faithfulness, is protected both physically and spiritually." [34] It is apparent from the ensuing discussion that rather than focusing on the fundamental belief in the 'spiritual protection' offered by this clothing that the authors, in trying to sensationalize their account, are much more interested in the idea of 'physical protection.' At the end of their book section they compare the garment to a "proverbial rabbit's foot or talisman." In an attempt to bolster this claim they utilize a quotation from a prominent LDS leader -- Spencer W. Kimball -- which seems, at a quick glance, to support such an interpretation. The quote reads as follows:

"Temple garments afford protection. I am sure one could go to [the] extreme in worshiping the cloth of which the garment is made, but one could also go to the other extreme. Though generally I think our protection is a mental, spiritual, moral one, yet I am convinced that there could be, and undoubtedly have been, many cases where there has been, through faith, an actual physical protection. So we must not minimize that possibility." [35]

President Kimball here expresses his view that the protection is generally spiritual, though one cannot rule out the possibility that God could grant physical protection as well. Surely the Lord can dispense blessings as He sees fit.

The authors have somewhat misrepresented the statement by Spencer Kimball. They introduce the citation with these words: "For instance, President Spencer W. Kimball said on 31 May 1948." It needs to be pointed out that Brother Kimball was not the President of the LDS Church in 1948 when these remarks were made. He was, however, an apostle -- having been ordained to that calling in 1943. He would not become the President of the Church until 1973. It should be further noted that this information was not delivered to the public but was rather written down in a private letter. While it is true that this information originated with Apostle Kimball it certainly does not carry the weight of authority which is lent to it by some anti-Mormons. This statement simply represents a personal opinion and NOT a doctrinal declaration that is binding upon Mormonism. It is clear that while Elder Kimball believed that the garment had acted as a physical protection in "many cases" he never stated that it was supposed to function that way in ALL instances.


Question: Do Mormons believe that the temple garment will protect them from physical harm?

The 'protection' of the garment is spiritual, not physical

The First Presidency of the LDS Church has explained in plain terms that the temple garment serves as "a protection against temptation and evil" and instead of it being some type of 'lucky talisman' the "promise of protection [associated with it] is conditioned upon worthiness and faithfulness." (First Presidency Letter, 10 October 1988; see Ensign, August 1997, 19-).

Elder Boyd K. Packer of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles has published a similar view about the kind of protection that is provided by the temple garment. He said that it "fosters modesty and becomes a shield and a protection to the wearer. . . . For many Church members the garment has formed a barrier of protection when the wearer has been faced with temptation." [36]

Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Twelve has said -- using symbolic language -- that "we wear the [temple] garment faithfully as part of the enduring armor of God." (Ensign, May 2001, 32-). Spiritual 'armor' is certainly designed to give a person spiritual protection, not to prevent numerous forms of physical harm.


Question: Is the wearing of the temple garment not supported by the Bible?

This claim of 'no biblical support' has no foundation in fact

The authors of Mormonism 101 also attack the LDS temple garment by claiming that the Mormon ideology associated with it is not supported by the Bible. They write:

"There is also no biblical support for this unusual practice. In the Old Testament, only priests from the line of Levi and not the common Jew wore the linen undergarments. Still we find no biblical support for the notion that the priestly garments offered any special protection as described by various LDS authorities." [37]

This claim of 'no biblical support' has no foundation in fact, as shown by the following evidence.

Elder Theodore M. Burton -- as an Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles -- stated publicly (at Brigham Young University) that the LDS temple garment has a distinct connection with the garments that were made by God for the progenitors of the human race (see Genesis 3:21). [38]

In Exodus 28: the Lord commanded that the priests who served in His temple were to wear white garments next to their skin that were considered to be of a "holy" nature. And like the garments that God made for Adam and Eve, the Israelite temple garments were designed to "cover [the priest's] nakedness."

As plainly stated in verses 42 and 43 of Exodus 28, the ancient temple garments of Israel needed to be worn if the priest wanted to be protected from a lethal degree of harm.

It is clear from biblical texts that only those persons who served in God's temple in an official priesthood capacity were allowed to wear the "holy" garments associated with it. By comparison, it is openly acknowledged that the innermost LDS temple clothing is designated as "the garment of the holy priesthood." (Ensign, August 1997, 19-; New Era, June 2000, 20-; Ensign, February 2007, 12-17).

While it is true that in Old Testament times only members of the tribe of Levi could wear the temple vestiture it is equally true that in New Testament times Jesus Christ granted priesthood privileges to His entire "nation" of authorized disciples (see 1 Pet. 2:9; Rev. 1:5-6).

Sacred clothing is described by early Christian literature

LDS scholar Hugh Nibley detailed the sacred clothing described by early Christian literature:

[In] the Pistis Sophia, a very early Christian writing, written in the third century but sounding as if it belongs to the forty-day literature [we learn more]. When the Lord spoke to the disciples after the resurrection, he formed a prayer circle: his disciples, men and women, stood around behind Jesus, who himself stood at the altar, thus facing, as it were, the four corners of the world, with his disciples who were all clothed in garments of linen (quoting the disciples). Jesus proceeded to give the prayer. The Pistis Sophia claims to be derived from 2 Jeu, a book allegedly written by Enoch and then hidden up in the cleft of a rock. Second Jeu says: "All the apostles were clothed in linen garments, . . . their feet were placed together and they turned themselves to the four corners of the world." And Jesus, taking the place of Adam, proceeded to instruct them in all the necessary ordinances. The point is that when they formed a prayer circle, they always mentioned "clothed in their garments" or "clothed in white linen."

Next comes the passage I cited from Cyril of Jerusalem; it is the fullest description we have, the only definite mention of particular garments. We see why it was not well known and was not followed through: "Yesterday, . . . immediately upon entering you removed your street clothes. And that was the image of putting off the old man and his works. . . . And may that garment, once put off, never be put on again!" "As Christ after his baptism . . . went forth to confront the Adversary, so you after your holy baptism and mystic anointing [the washing and anointing] were clothed in the armor of the Holy Ghost [a protective garment], to stand against the opposing . . . power." "Having put off the old man's garment of sorrow, you now celebrate as you put on the garment of the Lord Jesus Christ." "Having been baptized in Christ and having put on Christ (cf. Galatians 3:27) [notice the imagery that follows: you put on Christ, you put on the new man, you put on the new body; this is very closely connected with the putting on of clothes], like a garment, you come to resemble (symmorphoi gegonate) the Son of God."

The next day Cyril continues, "After you have put off the old garments and put on those of spiritual white, you should keep them always thus spotless white. This is not to say you must always go around in white clothes [these clothes were real; furthermore, we know of the baptismal garments, for we have references to them], but rather that you should always [be] clothed in what is really white and glorious." Then he cites Isaiah 61:10: "Let my soul exult in the Lord, for he hath clothed me in a robe of salvation and clothing of rejoicing."

This is the fullest of early Christian references to the vestments. But these are not vestments in the modern sense at all. They are worn by all Christians — but not all the time, not as a sign of clerical vocation within the church, and not as a public sign.

The combination of the items that make up the full clothing comes from the description of the high priestly garments at the beginning of Exodus 28. [39]

It is ironic that the early Christians used sacred clothing based upon Exodus 28, and it is exactly this which modern conservative Protestant critics attack in the Latter-day Saints (see above).


Question: Are sacred garments used in other religious traditions?

Latter-day Saints and early Christians are not the only religions who use an article of clothing to remind them of important religious principles

Other examples include:


1. The use of the "scapular" in various monastic and other devotional orders in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox traditions:

A scapular (from Latin scapula = shoulder) is a length of cloth suspended both front and back from the shoulders of the wearer, that varies in shape, colour, size and style depending on the use to which it is being put, namely whether in Christian monasticism or in Christian devotion.

The monastic scapular is part of the garb, the habit, of many Christian religious orders, of both monks and nuns, at least since the time of St Benedict. In its basic form it is a shoulder-wide floor-length piece of cloth covering front and back, and worn over the traditional tunic or cassock, almost like a sleeveless surcoat, traditionally in the case of some orders even during the night. It is the equivalent of the analavos worn in the Eastern tradition. From its mention in the Rule of St Benedict it may be argued that according to his mind the purpose of the scapular is solely of a spiritual nature, namely like an "apron" to be a sign of the wearer's readiness to serve, in this case that of the workman in the service of God. This understanding of the purpose of the monastic scapular as a purely symbolic apron is supported by the fact that monks and nuns, when engaged on some manual labour, tend to cover it with a protective apron or carefully tuck it up or throw the front length back over their shoulder to prevent it from getting in the way and possibly soiled and maybe even damaged….

In various Christian traditions the term scapular is also applied to a small devotional artifact worn by male and female non-monastics in the belief that this will be of spiritual benefit to them. The Roman Catholic Church considers it a sacramental. It consists of two small squares of cloth, wood or laminated paper, bearing religious images or text, which are joined by two bands of cloth. The wearer places one square on the chest, rests the bands one on each shoulder and lets the second square drop down the back. Some scapulars have extra bands running under the arms and connecting the squares to prevent them from getting dislodged underneath the wearer's top layer of clothes. In lieu of it, the "scapular medal" may be worn. [40]


2. The Jewish "tallit kattan" (or "tallis kattan") which is separate and different from the "tallit/tallis gadol" (the Jewish so-called prayer shawl). The "tallit/tallis kattan" is an undershirt made sacred by fringes in each corner. Wearing it is a matter of Jewish law (see, for example, Kitzur Shulchan Arukh 9:1). While a "tallit/tallis gadol" is worn during most morning prayers, the "tallit/tallis kattan" is worn every day, throughout the day.

3. The Sikh are obligated to wear breeches, known "kacha", as part of the Five Ks which Sikhs wear to distinguish themselves (the others being a steel bangle ("karha"), not cutting the hair and preserving it with a turban ("kesh" (hair) or "keski" (turban)), dagger ("kirpan"), and comb ("kanga").

4. Zoroastrians wear an undershirt known as "sudra," which is obligatory for Zoroastrians initiated into the faith. There is a special pocket to remind the person to fill his/her day with good deeds.

5. In Islam, those performing the hajj wear special clothing:

During the Hajj, male pilgrims are required to dress only in the ihram, a garment consisting of two sheets of white unhemmed cloth, with the top draped over the torso and the bottom secured by a white sash; plus a pair of sandals. Women are simply required to maintain their hijab - normal modest dress, which does not cover the hands or face.[8]

The Ihram clothing is intended to show the equality of all pilgrims in the eyes of Allah: there is no difference between a prince and a pauper when everyone is dressed the same. The Ihram also symbolizes purity and absolution of sins. [41]


Response to claim: "There seems to be an absence of love in the actual temple marriage ceremony"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

There seems to be an absence of love in the actual temple marriage ceremony. It seems to be more about obeying God and the Church.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim is false

This is a grave distortion. The critic simply wishes to trivialize the ceremony by claiming that it is all about obedience to the Church. The temple marriage ceremony is a very special experience that is performed in a quiet and sacred setting in the presence of immediate family and friends. The ceremony is also an ordinance which binds two people together for eternity. Claiming that there is an "absence of love" is utterly ridiculous.


Response to claim: "very few people honestly say that their first temple experience was a complete joy"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

Even among faithful members, very few people honestly say that their first temple experience was a complete joy or how they could really feel God's love or how Christ-centered they thought the experience was. At a minimum, people are kind and just say that it wasn't what they expected or that it just seemed strange to them.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

This is nonsense. We know many people for whom the temple is a very special experience. Just ask any temple-attending active member. If the temple makes them feel "strange," why do they keep going?


Response to claim: "We've been hearing more and more stories that temple names are being recycled"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

We've been hearing more and more stories that temple names are being recycled. Many people are reporting that temple patrons are performing endowments for the same deceased people multiple times. Some people report it as clerical errors while others state that sometimes the temples run out of names and just use names over again so the temple goers have someone to perform ordinances for.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

This is circular reasoning. The critics state that they have "been hearing more and more" stories and that "many people are reporting" things without any substantiation whatsoever. The critics end their summary by assuming that these "stories" are true and that they "understand" why it is necessary. The idea that temple work is in decline and that it is necessary to recycle temple names is a cherished talking point on ex-Mormon message boards.


Response to claim: "The St. George Temple endowment included a revised thirty-minute 'lecture at the veil'"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

"The St. George Temple endowment included a revised thirty-minute 'lecture at the veil' which summarized important theological concepts taught in the endowment and also contained references to the Adam-God doctrine."

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim is based upon correct information - The author is providing knowledge concerning some particular fact, subject, or event

This is correct.


Question: Was the "Adam-God" theory ever taught as part of the temple endowment ceremony as something called "the lecture at the veil"?

Brigham Young attempted to introduce the concept of Adam-God into the endowment, as far as it had been revealed to him and he was able to interpret it

The endowment was and is a ceremony that can be adapted to the needs of its audience. Brigham Young attempted to introduce the concept of Adam-God into the endowment, as far as it had been revealed to him and he was able to interpret it. He was not able to fully resolve the teaching and integrate it into LDS doctrine. After his death, Adam-God was not continued by his successors in the Presidency, and the idea was dropped from the endowment ceremony and from LDS doctrine. If there is anything true in that doctrine, one would expect that truth to be in harmony with what is already revealed. Only further revelation from the Lord's anointed can clear up the matter.

The full meaning of Brigham Young's teachings on Adam-God is not well understood, and the endowment ceremony was not written down until the late nineteenth century

Two points need to be made prior to any discussion of this subject:

  1. The full meaning of Brigham Young's teachings on Adam-God is not well understood. What he taught appears to have been a failed attempt to establish a new doctrinal belief. He did not live to reconcile it with LDS scripture, and later prophets did not continue his teaching. (See the main article on Adam-God.)
  2. The endowment ceremony was not written down until the late nineteenth century. Before and since that time, it was and has been modified occasionally by Church leaders to clarify and refine the presentation. (See the main article on temple endowment changes.)

How the endowment came to be written, and how Adam-God become part of it

The following is probably the best description of how the temple endowment came to be written, and what part Adam-God played in it:

Shortly after the dedication of the lower portion of the temple, Young decided it was necessary to commit the endowment ceremony to written form. On 14 January 1877 he "requested Brigham jr & W Woodruff to write out the Ceremony of the Endowments from Beginning to End," assisted by John D. T. McAllister and L. John Nuttall. Daily drafts were submitted for Young's review and approval. The project took approximately two months to complete. On 21 March 1877 Woodruff recorded in his journal: "President Young has been laboring all winter to get up a perfect form of Endowments as far as possible. They having been perfected I read them to the Company today." [42]

The St. George endowment included a revised thirty-minute "lecture at the veil" first delivered by Young. This summarized important theological concepts taught in the endowment and contained references to Young's Adam-God doctrine. In 1892 L. John Nuttall, one of those who transcribed Young's lecture, recalled how it came about:

In January 1877, shortly after the lower portion of the St. George Temple was dedicated, President Young, in following up in the Endowments, became convinced that it was necessary to have the formula of the Endowments written, and he gave directions to have the same put in writing.

Shortly afterwards he explained what the Lecture at the Veil should portray, and for this purpose appointed a day when he would personally deliver the Lecture at the Veil. Elders J. D. T. McAllister and L. John Nuttall prepared writing materials, and as the President spoke they took down his words. Elder Nuttall put the same into form and the writing was submitted to President Young on the same evening at his office in residence at St. George. He there made such changes as he deemed proper, and when he finally passed upon it [he] said: This is the Lecture at the Veil to be observed in the Temple.

A copy of the Lecture is kept at the St. George Temple, in which President Young refers to Adam in his creation and etc.

On 1 February 1877, when Young's lecture was first given, Woodruff wrote in his journal: "W Woodruff Presided and Officiated as El[ohim]. I dressed in pure white Doe skin from head to foot to officiate in the Priest Office, white pants vest & C[oat?] the first Example in any Temple of the Lord in this last dispensation. Sister Lucy B Young also dressed in white in officiating as Eve. Pr[e]sident [Young] was present and deliverd a lecture at the veil some 30 Minuts." The copy of the veil lecture which Nuttall describes is not presently available. But on 7 February Nuttall summarized in his diary additions to the lecture which Young made at his residence in Nuttall's presence:

In the creation the Gods entered into an agreement about forming this earth, and putting Michael or Adam upon it. These things of which I have been speaking are what are termed the mysteries of godliness but they will enable you to understand the expression of Jesus, made while in jerusalem, "This is life eternal that they might know thee, the ony true God and jesus Christ whom thou hast sent." We were once acquainted with the Gods and lived with them, but we had the privilege of taking upon us flesh that the spirit might have a house to dwell in. We did so and forgot all, and came into the world not recollecting anything of which we had previously learned. We have heard a great deal about Adam and Eve, how they were formed and etc. Some think he was made like an adobe and the Lord breathed into him the breath of life, for we read "from dust thou art and unto dust shalt thou return." Well he was made of the dust of the earth but not of this earth. He was made just the same way you and I are made but on another earth. Adam was an immortal being when he came on this earth; He had lived on an earth similar to ours; he had received the Priesthood and the keys thereof, and had been faithful in all things and gained his resurrection and his exaltation, and was crowned with glory, immortality and eternal lives, and was numbered with the Gods for such he became through his faithfulness, and had begotten all the spirit that was to come to this earth. And Eve our common mother who is the mother of all living bore those spirits in the celestial world. And when this earth was organized by Elohim, Jehovah and Michael, who is Adam our common father, Adam and Eve had the privilege to continue the work of progression, consequently came to this earth and commenced the great work of forming tabernacles for those spirits to dwell in, and when Adam and those that assisted him had completed this kingdom our earth[,] he came to it, and slept and forgot all and became like an infant child. It is said by Moses the historian that the Lord caused a deep sleep to come upon Adam and took from his side a rib and formed the woman that Adam called Eve—This should be interpreted that the Man Adam like all other men had the seed within him to propagate his species, but not the Woman; she conceives the seed but she does not produce it; consequently she was taken from the side or bowels of her father. This explains the mystery of Moses' dark sayings in regard to Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve when they were placed on this earth were immortal beings with flesh, bones and sinews. But upon partaking of the fruits of the earth while in the garden and cultivating the ground their bodies became changed from immortal to mortal beings with the blood coursing through their veins as the action of life—Adam was not under transgression until after he partook of the forbidden fruit; this was necessary that they might be together, that man might be. The woman was found in transgression not the man—Now in the law of Sacrifice we have the promise of a Savior and Man had the privilege and showed forth his obedience by offering of the first fruits of the earth and the firstlings of the flocks; this as a showing that Jesus would come and shed his blood.... Father Adam's oldest son (Jesus the Saviour) who is the heir of the family, is father Adam's first begotten in the spirit world, who according to the flesh is the only begotten as it is written. (In his divinity he having gone back into the spirit world, and came in the spirit to Mary and she conceived, for when Adam and Eve got through with their work in this earth, they did not lay their bodies down in the dust, but returned to the spirit world from whence they came.)

Brigham Young died August 29, 1877, shortly after introducing this version of the veil lecture. The evidence is indeterminate as to whether the St. George lecture with its Adam-God teaching was included in all temples or that it continued to the turn of the twentieth century. Buerger writes:

It is not clear, in fact, what did become of the lecture. The apparent ignorance of the subject matter implied by Abraham Cannon's [1888] account—despite his having been a General Authority for six years—suggest it was not routinely presented in the temple. Similar ignorance among some missionaries [in 1897] and their president ... who also presumably had been through the temple prior to their missions supports this conclusion. Although exposes of the temple ceremonies published about this time do not include any reference to this lecture, "fundamentalist" authors have asserted without serious attempt at documentation that Brigham's lecture was an integral part of the temple ceremony until about 1902-1905. In support of this has been placed the testimony of one individual who in 1959 distinctly remembered hearing during his endowment in the temple in 1902 that "Adam was our God." On returning from his mission in 1904 he noted that these teachings had been removed. While one would expect more extensive evidence than this were it true that the lecture was regularly given for twenty-five years, it ... should also be recalled that other "discredited" notions were still being promulgated in some temples by a few individuals during the early years of the twentieth century—such as the continued legitimacy of plural marriage, also a cherished fundamentalist tradition. [43]


Response to claim: "Why would the church place such emphasis on the temple?...Money...Control...Church importance...Peer pressure"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

Why would the church place such emphasis on the temple?...Money...Control...Church importance...Peer pressure.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim is false

The Church emphasizes temple attendance as a way of helping members understand the importance of the plan of salvation and the atonement of Jesus Christ. It is a way for us to renew and remember the covenants that we have made with God. If the Church were emphasizing temple attendance simply for the purposes of acquiring money and exercising control, then why would they emphasize attending the temple often? Would that not simply use up more Church resources such as power, heat and time?


Response to claim: "If they were just used for public weddings, sealings and special worship services, then the temple would be viewed by members and nonmembers alike as holy places"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

Temples are beautiful buildings that many Latter-day Saints have pictures of hanging on the walls of their homes. If they were just used for public weddings, sealings and special worship services, then the temple would be viewed by members and nonmembers alike as holy places. Baptisms for the dead might still be looked at as a strange practice, but at least it perhaps may have some Biblical justification.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

This is an arrogant assertion. The critics are claiming that if the Church simply removed several of its most important ordinances and turned the temples into something similar to public cathedrals, then everyone would be happy? Latter-day Saints view the temple as a sacred space, and do not have any desire to modify ordinances to make the rest of the world comfortable.


Response to claim: "The temple ceremony seems almost pagan in nature... Very few members are really spiritually uplifted when they first go through the temple"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

the temple endowment ceremony seems so foreign to the nice, friendly worship services we attend every Sunday in the LDS chapels. The temple ceremony seems almost pagan in nature. It's like a ritual we would expect the Druids to practice. Very few members are really spiritually uplifted when they first go through the temple to take out their endowments. Most feel confused, shocked and not quite sure what to make of their experience in what is supposed to be one of the holiest places on earth. We were always offended when members of other churches referred to our church as a cult. We never really understood why -- until we went through our first temple endowment ceremony.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

Comparing temple ceremonies to pagan practices is offensive. Many currently active members are spiritually uplifted when they first go through the temple, and revisit the temple often. Just because the critic was not uplifted does not give him or her the ability to speak for the majority of Latter-day Saints and assume that "very few" members are uplifted.


Response to claim: "the temple ceremony is not factual, as Adam and Eve are very likely a myth"

The author(s) of MormonThink make(s) the following claim:

Adam and Eve play a major part in the temple ceremony and are treated as actual, real, historical people (the first humans on the planet), which indicates that the temple ceremony is not factual, as Adam and Eve are very likely a myth.

FairMormon Response

Fact checking results: This claim contains propaganda - The author, or the author's source, is providing information or ideas in a slanted way in order to instill a particular attitude or response in the reader

This is circular reasoning. The critic draws a conclusion that the temple ceremony is invalid based upon an assumption that Adam and Eve did not exist. Latter-day Saints believe that Adam and Eve were real people.


Notes

  1. T. L. Brink, "The Rise of Mormonism: A Case Study in the Symbology of Frontier America," International Journal of Symbology 6/3 (1975): 4; cited in Allen D. Roberts, "Where are the All-Seeing Eyes?," Sunstone 4 no. (Issue #15) (May 1979), 26. off-site off-site
  2. Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site (citations omitted)
  3. William I. Appleby Journal, 5 May 1841, MS 1401 1, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah.
  4. Horace H. Cummings, "True Stories from My Journal," The Instructor 64 no. 8 (August 1929), 441.; cited in Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site
  5. Allen D. Roberts, "Where are the All-Seeing Eyes?," Sunstone 4 no. (Issue #5) (May 1979), 26. off-site off-site(emphasis added)
  6. Joseph Smith, Jr., Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, selected by Joseph Fielding Smith, (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1976), 194–195, (19 December 1841). off-site Direct off-site; see also History of the Church, 4:478–479. Volume 4 link
  7. See footnote 20 of Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site
  8. Joseph Smith, Jr., Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, selected by Joseph Fielding Smith, (Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1976), 329. off-site{15 October 1843)
  9. Wilford Woodruff, Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, 9 vols., ed., Scott G. Kenny (Salt Lake City: Signature Books, 1985), 5:418, (22 January 1860, spelling standardized). ISBN 0941214133.
  10. See Footnote 30, Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site
  11. H. Belnap, "A Mysterious Preacher," The Instructor 21 no. ? (15 March 1886), 91.; cited in Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site
  12. Andrew F. Ehat, "'They Might Have Known That He Was Not a Fallen Prophet'—The Nauvoo Journal of Joseph Fielding," Brigham Young University Studies 19 no. 2 (1979), 145, 147, spelling and punctuation standardized.
  13. Heber C. Kimball to Parley P. Pratt, 17 June 1842, Parley P. Pratt Papers, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah, spelling and punctuation standardized.
  14. Letter, 7–25 March 1842, Willard Richards to Levi Richards, published in Joseph Grant Stevenson, ed., Richards Family History (Provo, UT: Stevenson’s Genealogical Center, 1991), 3:90.
  15. Stanley B. Kimball, Heber C. Kimball: Mormon Patriarch and Pioneer (Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 1981), 85.
  16. Benjamin F. Johnson, My Life’s Review (Heber City, UT: Archive Publishers, 2001), 113.
  17. Brigham Young University Studies, vol. 19, no. 2, Winter 1979, 145; hereafter cited as BYUS.
  18. John W. Gunnison, The Mormons, or Latter-day Saints, in the Valley of the Great Salt Lake (Philadelphia: Lippincott and Company, 1856), 59.
  19. BYUS, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 1975, 458.
  20. Thomas B. H. Stenhouse, The Rocky Mountain Saints (New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1873), 698.
  21. See Footnote 30, Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site
  22. H. Belnap, "A Mysterious Preacher," The Instructor 21 no. ? (15 March 1886), 91.; cited in Matthew B. Brown, "Of Your Own Selves Shall Men Arise, Review of The Mysteries of Godliness: A History of Mormon Temple Worship by David John Buerger," FARMS Review of Books 10/1 (1998): 97–131. off-site
  23. Andrew F. Ehat, "'They Might Have Known That He Was Not a Fallen Prophet'—The Nauvoo Journal of Joseph Fielding," Brigham Young University Studies 19 no. 2 (1979), 145, 147, spelling and punctuation standardized.
  24. Heber C. Kimball to Parley P. Pratt, 17 June 1842, Parley P. Pratt Papers, LDS Church Archives, Salt Lake City, Utah, spelling and punctuation standardized.
  25. Letter, 7–25 March 1842, Willard Richards to Levi Richards, published in Joseph Grant Stevenson, ed., Richards Family History (Provo, UT: Stevenson’s Genealogical Center, 1991), 3:90.
  26. Stanley B. Kimball, Heber C. Kimball: Mormon Patriarch and Pioneer (Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 1981), 85.
  27. Benjamin F. Johnson, My Life’s Review (Heber City, UT: Archive Publishers, 2001), 113.
  28. Brigham Young University Studies, vol. 19, no. 2, Winter 1979, 145; hereafter cited as BYUS.
  29. John W. Gunnison, The Mormons, or Latter-day Saints, in the Valley of the Great Salt Lake (Philadelphia: Lippincott and Company, 1856), 59.
  30. BYUS, vol. 15, no. 4, Summer 1975, 458.
  31. Thomas B. H. Stenhouse, The Rocky Mountain Saints (New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1873), 698.
  32. Increase McGee Van Dusen and Maria Van Dusen, Positively True. A Dialogue between Adam and Eve, The Lord and the Devil, called the Endowment: As was acted by Twelve or Fifteen Thousand, in Secret, in the Nauvoo Temple, said to be revealed from God as a Reward for Building that Splendid Edifice, and the Express Object for which it was built (Albany: C. Killmer, 1847). 10, 15-16.
  33. Ibid., 16. in From Temple Mormon to Anti-Mormon: The Ambivalent Odyssey of Increase Van Dusen Craig L. Foster. Dialogue, 27. 3, (Fall 1994): 276
  34. McKeever and Johnson, Mormonism 101, 210.
  35. This citation is referenced in Mormonism 101 as "Kimball, Teachings of Spencer W. Kimball, 539." This is actually a composite work edited by Edward L. Kimball after President Kimball's death. The original text came from a personal letter dated May 31, 1948.
  36. Boyd K. Packer, The Holy Temple (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1980), 75ff.
  37. McKeever and Johnson, Mormonism 101, 212.
  38. Genesis 3:7,10,21
  39. Temple and Cosmos: Beyond This Ignorant Present (Vol. 12 of the Collected Works of Hugh Nibley), edited by Don E. Norton, (Salt Lake City, Utah : Deseret Book Company ; Provo, Utah : Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies, 1992), 95–97.. Nibley cites Pistis Sophia II, 99; III 134; IV, 136, lines 16-22, in Carl Schmidt, ed., Pistis Sophia, tr. Violet MacDermot (Leiden: Brill, 1978), 353; 2 Jeu 42, 114 in Carl Schmidt, ed., The Books of Jeu and the Untitled Text in the Bruce Codex, tr. Violet MacDermot (Leiden: Brill, 1978), 99. He also cites Cyril, Cyril of Jerusalem, Catecheses (Instructions) XX [II], 2; XXI [III], 4; XIX [I], 10. Other references silently removed.
  40. "Scapular," on Wikipedia (accessed 14 December 2008). Internal references silently removed. (italics added) off-site
  41. "Hajj: Preparations," on Wikipedia (accessed 14 December 2008). (italics added) off-site
  42. David John Buerger, The Mysteries of Godliness (Smith Research Associates, 1994), pp. 110–13.
  43. David John Buerger, "The Adam-God Doctrine," Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 15 no. 1 (Spring 82), 14–58.