Tuesday, February 16, 2010

From Kirtland to San Diego- LDS Temple Dedicatory Prayers

My last post was a comparison of the dedicatory prayers that were offered at the dedication of both the Temple built during the reign of King Solomon, and the one which was given by Joseph Smith in dedication of the Kirtland Temple built by the Latter Day Saints in Ohio. In my study I decided to look at another dedicatory prayer to see if I could find any similarities to either of the previously mentioned prayers. I chose to look at the San Diego Temple dedicatory prayer simply because of the proximity of this beautiful temple. I believe that you could compare any dedicatory prayer offered and find similarities of interest... try it on the temple location nearest you.

I focused primarily on Kirtland and San Diego.

It is interesting to note that the Kirtland Temple dedicatory prayer was a prayer of “asking”. In contrast, the majority of the San Diego Temple dedicatory prayer was offered by way of “thanking”. When I noticed this, I decided to see if any of the thanking going on in San Diego was a direct result of the asking that took place at Kirtland. The results are stunning.

Some “asks” that were requested in Kirtland are as follows:

-to accept the Temple

-that glory might rest upon the Temple continually

-that all who enter might feel of thy power, and acknowledge it as a place of holiness

-that all who worship may be taught words of wisdom

-that all may “grow up in thee”, receive a fulness of the Holy Ghost, become organized according to thy laws, and become prepared to obtain every needful thing

-that those who transgress will speedily repent and return to thy House

-that servants may go forth from this House armed with power, with thy name put upon them, bearing glorious tidings, in truth, unto the ends of the earth

-that a people might be established to honorably hold a name and standing in this House, for all generations and eternity

-that no weapon can be formed against this people and all lying reports against them be given shame and confusion

-to bless those nations who uphold the constitution

-to soften the hearts of the rulers of the world that they may allow the message of the gospel to be preached in their lands

-to appoint other stakes for the gathering of the Saints

-to have mercy upon Jerusalem, and return Judah to his lands of inheritance and become converted to the gospel

-Bless the prophet, leaders of the Church, and families of the Church individually.

It is apparent to me that many of the requested blessings that were asked for in Kirtland at the opening of this great outpouring of the Spirit, have been granted by the Lord. By observing this simple pattern it is easy for me to see the “hand of the Lord” in all things.

Some of the “thanks” given at the San Diego dedication are as follows:

-for the consecrated tithes of the saints across the earth that have made this Temple possible

-for the “fullness of the priesthood” which will be exercised therein

-for the eternal plan, including the ordinances that will be performed in the holy house, for the living and the dead of all generations

-for the spread of thy work across the world and the power to open the doors of nations to thine ordained messengers

-for remembering the ancient covenant made with Father Lehi and for the faithfulness of his posterity from whose eyes the shackles of darkness are now falling

-for the work moving forward to dedicate more temples across the earth

-for this nation under whose inspired Constitution we enjoy the freedom to worship

-for the Atonement of Jesus Christ making all these blessing possible

I believe that these blessings are a direct result of the obedience and sacrifice given by those who offered their consecrated efforts by building the Kirtland Temple as directed by the Lord. They are a gift to us as their posterity. When I then looked at the "asks" given in the San Diego Temple dedicatory prayer, I could not help but wonder if 100 years from now my posterity would be thanking the Lord for the blessing given them as a direct result of the requests made in my generation.

It is with great humility that I desire to concentrate on the final request given at the San Diego Temple dedication:

“In accepting thy gospel we have become a covenant people. We have taken upon ourselves the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and have promised to keep His commandments. Strengthen us in our resolutions and guard us against failure in observing the obligations we have accepted. In thy sacred temples we make further covenants with thee. Give us the will to live above sin and selfishness. Save us from pride and arrogance. Smile with favor upon us we humbly pray thee. Bless us with a spirit of benevolence toward all who are in distress wherever they may be or whatever their circumstances... On this day of dedication may a new spirit of consecration come into our hearts that we may serve thee more acceptably through service to they sons and daughters- those who dwell upon the earth and those who have gone before.”

I hope that my grandchildren will be able to see the realization of the blessings given, that are attached to these requests because of my obedience and sacrifice, like I now enjoy the blessings given as a result of those who consecrated themselves in Kirtland.

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