Lesson 45 now online. I discuss how Revelation is a temple endowment. Don’t worry, I walk carefully through it all, and had to omit many things in the public realm that would have been too sensitive on the temple. But I hope you’ll like it.
Read there, comment here!
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Gerald (Rameumptom) Smith is a student of the gospel. Joining the Church of Jesus Christ when he was 16, he served a mission in Santa Cruz Bolivia (1978=1980). He is married to Ramona, has 3 stepchildren and 7 grandchildren. Retired Air Force (Aim High!). He has been on the Internet since 1986 when only colleges and military were online. Gerald has defended the gospel since the 1980s, and was on the first Latter-Day Saint email lists, including the late Bill Hamblin's Morm-Ant. Gerald has worked with FairMormon, More Good Foundation, LDS.Net and other pro-LDS online groups. He has blogged on the scriptures for over a decade at his site: Joel's Monastery
(joelsmonastery.blogspot.com). He has the following degrees: AAS Computer Management, BS Resource Mgmt, MA Teaching/History.
Gerald was the leader for the Tuskegee Alabama group, prior to it becoming a branch. He opened the door for missionary work to African Americans in Montgomery Alabama in the 1980s. He's served in two bishoprics, stake clerk, high council, HP group leader and several other callings over the years. While on his mission, he served as a counselor in a branch Relief Society presidency.
I have to admit, I’ve always avoided the Book of Revelation because I thought it was only apocolyptical — not really a fan of the doom and gloom. But, that was very interesting and it makes sense that in having a vision of the whole world, John would also learn about the temple and the endowment.
Thanks rameumptom, that was a beautiful and insightful analysis. I haven’t read Revelations since I abandoned my literalistic readings in favor of a more gnostic approach. Your essay got me excited to read Revelations with new eyes.
Deep stuff Rame. I will have to read this several times to let it all sink in.
Great explanation. I’ve learned to love Revelation, especially after reading an article by Gerald N. Lund that explains the backbone structure. It oriented me so that I wasn’t so lost. Also, there’s a great film called “The Apocalypse of John” starring Richard Harris (yep, Dumbledore) as John. Some of the special effects are obviously TV-movie-quality, but it was really fun to see chapters 4-12 illustrated on the screen. It really helps you to picture parts of the vision, and to remember the sequence. Someone has clipped together all the visionary scenes at YouTube. There’s an English version that omits a few clips, but the subtitled Italian version has all of them, about 40 minutes’ worth.
Sadly, many of the things I researched I could not include in the blog post, simply because they come too close to the LDS endowment. However, I will say that I hope someday to attend the temple someday with Kerry Shirts in order to discuss some Masonic symbols that tie the ancient temple (particularly the pillars) with the modern temple.
Do I have my thoughts on what the Beast, etc, are? Of course. But that is secondary to what I’ve written here. I look forward to next year’s Book of Mormon lessons, because much of it will focus on the endowment found in the Book of Mormon, and the concept of returning into the presence of the Lord.
This concept is the main concept of the major prophets from day one. Adam sought to return to the Garden and God’s presence, finally achieving God’s presence 3 years before his death (D&C 107). Moses wanted to take Israel up Sinai to see God’s face (D&C 84). Enoch and Melchizedek prepared their cities to reach heaven and God’s presence. Joseph Smith sought to build Zion anew, preparing a place for the Lord to dwell. When he could not build the city, the temples became his new focus as smaller places for God to dwell on earth. I will never forget the first dedication service for the Nauvoo Temple. Pres Hinckley, in speaking, suddenly choked up and announced that he felt the presence of God, Jesus and Joseph Smith! Every time we go through the endowment, we practice this entering into the presence of the Lord, in anticipation of the real thing.