Great Posts at TempleStudy.com

Imitation of Bryce\'s LogoAlthough most of you who are viewing my page are likely already familiar with his, I wanted to make note of a couple of excellent posts (well, he always has excellent posts) over at Bryce Haymond’s TempleStudy blog. His last two posts are of great interest to me, so I thought I would make special notice of them.

 

Enoch’s Anointing and Investiture During Ascension in 2 Enoch

In this post, Bryce gives us one of the greatest examples of the Heavenly Ascent in all known religious literature (hence the especial appropriateness of my making mention of it here). Enoch, the antideluvian patriarch, is taken up through the various heavens to the Highest Heaven and there beholds the face of God.  The result of this experience is the transfiguration of Enoch’s mortal body into a celestial body and the bestowal of glory and a throne next to God’s. Quoting from his post:

This Enoch, whose flesh was turned to flame, his veins to fire, his eye-lashes to flashes of lightning, his eye-balls to flaming torches, and whom God placed on a throne next to the throne of glory, received after this heavenly transformation the naGod took Enoch - Illustrated by Gerard Hoet (1648-1733)me Metatron.1

Bryce does an excellent job of pointing out the similarities between these themes in Enoch and our modern LDS Temple practices.  

In the celestial realm, Enoch is anointed, clothed, and given a new name. Bryce comments:

The symbolism of the temple is quite clear. This text covers the themes of ascension, deification (theosis), exaltation, anointing, investiture, the garment of priesthood, and being made like one of His glorious ones.

 I believe that these types of ascension stories preserve ancient Temple belief and ritual. As Latter-day Saints, there is much that we can learn and enjoy by studying such texts.

If you haven’t already, please take the time to take a good look at Bryce’s great post over at www.TempleStudy.com.

 

God Dwelleth Not in Temples Made With Hands? –Part I

 Cartoon for St. Paul Preaching in Athens - Raphael. c1513-1514. Mixed media on paper, mounted on canvas. Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK. This is Bryce’s newest post. The general purpose of the post was to respond to an evangelical reader who had a question involving the legitimacy of a physical post-Messianic temple. In his question to Bryce, he cites Acts 17:24-25 which states that God does not “dwell in houses built by hands.”

In the first of a multi-part post, Bryce answers the question respectfully and convincingly. He analyzes the scriptures in question, showing how they are often misunderstood. He proposes:

But do Paul’s words suggest that God’s presence cannot be had within earthly temples which mirror the heavenly temple? I don’t believe so, because I don’t believe they are earthly. Dr. John Tvedtnes has explained that the words “‘without hands’ suggest something not made by mortals, but by God” (cf. Col. 2:11)3. In every case of God’s dealing with man on earth He has commanded his servants to build sacred sanctuaries (temples) wherein He may reveal Himself and His will to His people. In such cases God has been the director of the building of these structures, not man.

He continues on to give good evidence that Christians did continue to worship in the Temple after Christ’s ascension and that the Temple was considered by Christians to be the place of God’s presence.

I believe that Margaret Barker tackles and answers this question well in her book Temple Themes in Christian Worship, which I am commenting on here on my blog. In Part II of my commentary, I review the evidences she provides for Christians employing Temple traditions in their worship and their hope that they would have a physical temple of their own one day.

Another great post from www.TempleStudy.com. I look forward to seeing the rest of Bryce’s response.

Published in: on June 7, 2008 at 2:40 pm  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Wow!! Thank you for the reviews of my posts and the links! I’m so grateful to have such great friends and colleagues in this corner of the Bloggernacle.

  2. No problem, Bryce. Your hard work is certainly deserving of recognition. Your site is a shining example for the rest of us.


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