“The Prophet Joseph Smith said that Elijah held the sealing power of the Melchizedek Priesthood and was the last prophet to do so before the time of Jesus Christ. He appeared on the Mount of Transfiguration with Moses and conferred the keys of the priesthood on Peter, James, and John (Matt. 17:3). He appeared again, with Moses and others, on 3 April 1836, in the Kirtland Ohio Temple and conferred the same keys upon Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery (D&C 110:13–16)” (The Guide to the Scriptures, page).
I testify that the prophecy of Malachi has been fulfilled. We have the keys for carrying out the work in the “Holy Temples.”
What would happen if those ordinances are not administered? The Prophet Joseph Smith said: “All men who become heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ will have to receive the fulness of the ordinances of his kingdom; and those who will not receive all the ordinances will come short of the fulness of that glory” (Teachings of the Presidents of the Church - Joseph Smith- Page 419).
This instruction is final, there is no other option; if we do not receive those ordinances, we will not be able to receive the greatest things that the Lord has in store for us.
As part of the dedicatory prayer in the Kirtland Temple, which the Prophet Joseph Smith received by revelation, and which later was recorded in Section 109 of Doctrine and Covenants, the Prophet prayed: “And we ask thee, Holy Father, that thy servants may go forth from this house armed with thy power, and that thy name may be upon them, and thy glory be round about them, and thine angels have charge over them; and from this place they may bear exceedingly great and glorious tidings, in truth, unto the ends of the earth, that they may know that this is thy work, and that thou hast put forth thy hand, to fulfil that which thou hast spoken by the mouths of the prophets, concerning the last days.”
I testify that the prophecies uttered by the Prophet Joseph Smith are being fulfilled. The prophets of our time utilize the temples to arm themselves with His power, in those sacred places making inspired decisions that affect the development of the work throughout the world. Also, each one of us can utilize the temple for that purpose in order to more effectively fulfill the stewardship that we have.
Likewise, those of us who have already entered the temple can bless those who have passed away without having had the opportunity to make those covenants while they were alive. The only way to fulfill this responsibility is to go to the temple. The same happiness that we feel when we enter for the first time is surely the same happiness felt by those who receive the ordinances vicariously.
The story of when construction of the Salt Lake Temple began has been one of teaching and inspiration to me. After working hard for nine years on the construction of said temple, they had to cover up the foundations in the face of the arrival of the U.S. Army to put down a supposed rebellion in Utah, based on an entirely erroneous interpretation of the facts, founded on vile calumnies.
Upon their arrival, they found a field, plowed and walled, and a peaceful settlement was reached between the army and the people. When removing the dirt, one year later, they found that some parts of the foundation were not in good condition.
The architect doubted that those foundation stones could uphold the structure of the temple. President Brigham Young asked them to leave him alone. He would stay there until he received the confirmation from the Lord of what he ought to do. Elder Wilford Woodruff went to see him, and he told him that several of those who were knowledgeable told him that they should re-make some parts of the foundation.
Elder Woodruff added: “I fear, President, that we will have to bring out all the foundation stones.” President Young exclaimed, “It took us nine years of work. Our men’s hands and feet froze while they worked in the rain and wind; the task was superhuman. But I know that this temple must remain during the millennium. Many generations will receive their endowments here.” The prophet of the Lord had made the decision: “We shall pull out the foundation stones, and we shall start over.” (Movie “The Mountain of the Lord,” produced by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
This extraordinary faith and determination manifested by the prophet Brigham Young is the kind that should move us to do our duty as members of the Church of Jesus Christ. We feel moved, as an Area Presidency, by the faithfulness of many members of the Church, who have very clearly in mind the importance of working in the temples, but we can still do much more, especially those stakes that are in close proximity to the temples.
I encourage all those who do not have their temple recommend to eliminate from their lives those less than adequate foundation stones and “start over.”
How happy and thankful we are to have a temple in the Caribbean Area, but we must be aware of our great responsibility. The Lord asks us to show Him our thanks by going to His House as often as possible. I testify, as one of His witnesses, that if we do so, we shall be blessed personally, as families, and as a people. We shall see many miracles in the Caribbean Area and around the world through greater service in “His Sacred Temples.”
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