24 April 2015
Temples of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints throughout the world testify of Jesus Christ. These sacred buildings, beautifully furnished and landscaped, serve as houses of worship where Church members go to learn of God’s plan for His children, to make sacred promises to God and to contemplate spiritual things — especially the life, ministry and Atonement of Jesus Christ.
The religious experience at each temple consists of ceremonies that allow Latter-day Saints to continue the spiritual progression that begins with baptism. In these ceremonies, which are the same in each temple, Latter-day Saints promise to be better people and to follow Christ. They receive in-depth teaching about Church doctrines, especially the central doctrine of the Church, which is that Jesus Christ is the Savior and Redeemer of the world.
In the temple, the Savior’s atoning sacrifice is placed in the context of God’s plan for the happiness of all of His children. God the Father’s plan for His children began before the world was created. As part of this plan, Jesus Christ agreed to come to earth to redeem all people. Under the Father’s direction, Jesus created the world as a place for us to learn to choose good instead of evil.
In temple ceremonies, Latter-day Saints are reminded that Adam and Eve, the first people placed on the earth, experienced the consequences of choosing something that God had prohibited. As a result of the Fall, they were exiled from the peaceful Garden of Eden. They entered the mortal world, where life was harsh. They learned that during mortality, they could learn how to return to God’s presence by keeping His commandments, repenting of their sins and accepting the healing power of Christ’s Atonement. The temple ceremonies teach that all of God’s children must learn these same things in order to return to their Father in Heaven.
Every aspect of the temple ceremonies testifies that Jesus Christ is God’s Son and that through His atoning sacrifice, He has provided the way for God’s children to be redeemed from the effects of the Fall and from their own sins. Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the life, and He provides the only path back to God. The temple teaches that those who want to receive the full blessings of the Atonement must have faith in Jesus Christ, repent of their sins, receive the ordinances of salvation and obey the commandments of God.
Latter-day Saints believe that becoming like Jesus Christ is the central purpose of life. The Savior asked, “Therefore, what manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am” (3 Nephi 27:27). Throughout His mortal life, Jesus Christ served as the ultimate example for everyone to follow. Temple attendance solidifies Church members’ resolve to follow Christ’s teachings, providing a place where they renew their commitment to live as Christ did.
This commitment to live as Christ did includes obeying the Ten Commandments and other commandments from God that are found in the scriptures. It means that Latter-day Saints strive to reach out in love to those in need around them, as the Savior did. They are committed to strengthening their households, their Church congregations and their communities.
As Church members leave the temple with increased faith in Jesus Christ, they are lifted above the turmoil of their everyday lives. Their faith in Jesus’s atoning sacrifice sanctifies, heals and strengthens them. Each Sunday they take the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper as a weekly reminder of Jesus’s sacrifice for the sins of all mankind and the sacred promises they have made to follow Him throughout their lives.