What's in a Word: Temple

(Time and a Word)

     Ok, here's a word for you: Temple.
     Know what it means? Of course you do. But why? You see, this is how you learn: Ask the questions so obvious no one else asks them, like Joseph Smith did one day. So, what does temple mean? The answer still remains in our modern language, but, turning to Wiktionary, we see that Temple comes from the old English, Tempel, which comes from the old French, Tempel, which comes from the Latin, Templum, meaning an enclosed shrine.
     A shrine.
     That's just how it's used. The name actually means something more, something older. Something from our now largely extinct common, ancestral, Proto-Indo-European language, or PIE. And the meaning there is, temp. Yes, temp. Just like you'd use it today to describe a 'stretch' (the word's technical meaning) or span of time.
     Now, why is this significant?
     Christ, upon being resurrected, was not recognized by his own wives, Mary and Martha (who had a rivalry between them something like Peter and John had). It's not the first time, either. When he passed through the crowd, it was because they were blind to him. They didn't recognize him. Nor was it the last. Every single time Christ reappeared to his apostles and other disciples, they didn't recognize him, sometimes even refusing to believe it was him until they felt the wound in his side. Peter and John saw him standing on the shore while they were fishing. They suspected it might be him, but they really didn't dare ask him. Can you imagine being so inured to the elephant in the room that you never think to ask about it? NO! Of course not. Neither were they. Scripture is very clear that they didn't DARE ask. But why not? Better still, why didn't they ask why he was doing that to them?
     He wanted them to ask, for a change.
     The apostles were weary of being made to feel stupid for not knowing what they really ought to have, so they more or less gave up, looking, instead, for round-about ways of getting at the point. So far, they've been trying to get him to reveal the time of his return, and have already been rebuffed gently: Matthew 24:36 "But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only."
     In fact, read all of Matthew 24. It's all about Christ explaining what's coming, and how to tell when, by which order, and them trying to get him to ... Tell us, when shall these things be?
     Verse 25 is good, too, with Christ repeating its unpredictability, and the need to be prepared.
     In verse 26 Here he moves along to saying essentially, 'Well, it's about time for me to go.' (Hint: You'll find out then.)
     But, at this point, Peter still hasn't even reached the point Christ told him would be the awakening that would require him to enlighten the others. Luke 22:32 "...when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."
     Peter is an apostle now. He's seen Christ heal deformed limbs, restore sight to the blind, even raise the dead, and all that right before his eyes. Moreover, Peter was up on the Mount of Transfiguration (You know why it's called that, right?) with Christ, and saw Moses, Elias, and others.
     Peter's NOT converted yet?! What on earth will it take?!
     The ascension.
     You can practically feel the scene...
     1 The former treatise have I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,
     [This is being written in retrospect to support earlier records of events.]
     2 Until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen:
     3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God:
     [Witnesses kept seeing Christ for a long time, '40' days]
     4 And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.
     5 For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
     [At one of their meetings to discuss their immediate plans/orders...]
     6 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?
     [There's that question again! Not that saints aren't always wanting to know this, but they have a special reason this time: Every time they've seen him, they haven't recognized him. And that's a big problem. Because Christ has been warning them about false Christs. Well, if they can't recognize the true Christ, how will they know the false Christs? Simple! Find out WHEN he'll be back. We'll mark it on our calendars! We'll even make it a national holiday. No one will miss it. Right? Right? ? Right??? But look what Christ tells them.]
     7 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.
     [That's a bit blunter and more direct than Matthew 24 was. But, wait, we're talking times and seasons here?! This is about nature?! And you haven't (yet) inherited EVERYTHING from your Father? He keeps his control over/knowledge of that? He's Eternity?! Father Time?! Kolob?! Abraham 3:3-10 and Facsimile # 2 Ah, just look up Kolob's MANY appearances throughout Abraham. They all refer to time.]
     8 But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.
     9 And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight.
     10 And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, ...
     [Ok, catch the scene being described here. These guys who've seen all that they've seen now get to see him rise into heaven, and that leaves them slack-jawed. I'm not exaggerating. Read it right there for yourselves. And Christ even predicted this in John 6:62 "What and if ye shall see the Son of man ascend up where he was before?"]
     ... two men stood by them in white apparel;
     [Same 2 that were in the tomb? And who were they?]
     11 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.
     [To paraprase/liken unto us: Hey! Yo! Dudes! Snap out of it! Don't you get it yet? The way he went is the way he'll return. Do you really think any impostor can do that? You won't have any problem avoiding the false Christs, now, will you? Notice, though, that the apostles haven't even asked that question. Ever. They were afraid to! But Christ knew very well what question they were beating around the bush with by asking him WHEN he'd return, and he'd already tried explaining it to them, but they still weren't getting it, so he showed them instead. NOW they get it. How do we know? Look at 'timid' Peter's immediate 180.]
     12 Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a sabbath day's journey.
     13 And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.
     14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.
     15 And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
     16 Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.
     17 For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.
     18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.
     19 And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
     20 For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take.
     21 Wherefore of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us,
     22 Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection.
     23 And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias.
     24 And they prayed, and said, Thou, Lord, which knowest the hearts of all men, shew whether of these two thou hast chosen,
     25 That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place.
     26 And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell upon Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles.
     [Peter just took charge. And he's talking about the death he so feared finding Judas instead, bursting like a dropped watermelon, and getting a replacement apostle, Matthias, appointed in his stead. This is a far cry from the man who denied Christ. This is far from the guy who had no more ambition or inspiration than to go back to fishing after Christ was resurrected. This is the brand new Peter. Why? What did he just see? What if we saw it? Can we? Will we ever be truly converted without that vision? The APOSTLE, Peter, wasn't.]
     So, the Father has to do with time, eh?
     And Christ describes himself as Alpha and Omega, a specific stretch of time, the lifespan of the earth, perhaps?
     A Temple is, as Christ himself called it, His Father's house, for a stretch of time, aka temporary, a temple, a shrine to eternity.
     Ever wonder why temples concern themselves with eternal ordinances, while those performed in the chapels are temporal, even our own baptism? (We will eventually be baptized into the church of the firstborn, according to Revelation, so our current baptism is for the temporal church.)
     And that's not all. Spencer Kimball expressed the 3-fold mission of the church in terms of time: Proclaim the Gospel (reach through the womb, into someone's future, to prepare a soft landing here on earth for them); Perfect the Saints (reach across the pew to someone here and now); Redeem the dead (reach through the tomb, into the past, to rescue those who've gone on before).
     Past, Present, Future. Christ's church is the church of time. The Father's church is the church of eternity. As can also be seen in D&C 88:5 "Which glory is that of the church of the Firstborn, even of God, the holiest of all, through Jesus Christ his Son--"
     So, the church of the firstborn is the church of God, the holiest of all, through Jesus Christ his Son.
     And in D&C 76 ...
     54 They are they who are the church of the Firstborn.
     55 They are they into whose hands the Father has given all things--
     ... including time, I wonder?
     But then there's this:
     67 These are they who have come to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of Enoch, and of the Firstborn.
     Enoch?! More on that later.
     Temple = The temporary House of the God of Eternity

~~ Marcus Aurelius ~~