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When Joseph Smith dragged his feet on building the Kirtland Temple, the Lord rebuked him saying,“Ye have sinned against me a very grievous sin in that ye have not considered the great commandment” in the “building of mine house.” (D&C 95:3)

The Lord, in fulfillment of Acts 3:19-21, appeared in the temple to accept the temple. This was followed by the appearance of Elijah, who restored the keys of sealing of families and Moses, who restored the keys of the gathering of Israel, yet the RLDS/CofC don't see either as binding on the church. Apostle Orson Hyde was subsequently dispatched to the Holy Land to exercise the keys of the gathering of Judah, which began within two decades thereafter.

Why, if the RLDS/CofC was going to ignore these important keys, did the church value the Kirtland Temple? It would be like valuing (as a relic) the cross Jesus was crucified on, while wholeheartedly rejecting the Atonement. It makes little sense. I've wondered about this for years.

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RLDS: Why Was Kirtland Temple Holy?

There are several reasons why the Community of Christ, known from 1872 to 2001 as the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS), consider the Kirtland Temple to be holy!

Like other Christian churches and temples sacred places places of other Christian denominations is was dedicated in a seven-hour service on March 27, 1836. Churches (temples) of other Christian denominations are of dedicated to God through a series of dedications prayers that consecrate a particular building to the glory of their religion. For the the Community of Christ this is equally true in the sight of their faith.

There are others points that the Community of Christ take into consideration to maintain the sacredness of this dwelling.

  • This is in effect, the first temple constructed and dedicated the the service of God within the LDS and RLDS communities.

  • In December 1832, Smith stated he received a revelation that called for the construction of a house of worship, education, and order.

  • On May 6, 1833, Smith stated he had received a revelation from God, directing members of the church to construct "a house ... wholly dedicated unto the Lord for the work of the presidency," "dedicated unto the Lord from the foundation thereof, according to the order of the priesthood."

  • The First Presidency, Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, and Frederick G. Williams, presided over the laying of the temple cornerstone at a ceremony held on July 23, 1833.

  • The temple was dedicated in a seven-hour service on March 27, 1836. A reported "one thousand persons" attended the gathering, which introduced such traditional dedication rites as the Hosanna Shout and singing of the hymn written by W. W. Phelps entitled "The Spirit of God Like a Fire Is Burning." Following a two-and-a-half hour sermon given by church leader Sidney Rigdon, Smith offered a dedicatory prayer that had been prepared by a committee of church leaders, which he indicated was given to him by revelation.

  • On Easter Sunday, April 3, 1836, coinciding with the Jewish Passover, Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery reported experiencing a significant event at the Kirtland Temple. It is recounted that the Lord manifested Himself to them, expressing acceptance of the temple. This event involved the restoration of certain priesthood keys through ancient prophets, namely Moses, Elias (understood to be the Biblical prophet Malachi), and Elijah. These keys were said to represent various aspects of religious authority, including the gathering of Israel, the gospel of Abraham, and sealing powers.

Kirtland Temple

The Kirtland Temple is the first temple built by adherents of the Latter Day Saint movement. It is located in Kirtland, Ohio, United States, and was completed and dedicated in March 1836. Designed by Joseph Smith, the founder and original leader of the movement, the architecture mixes the Federal, Greek Revival, and Gothic Revival styles.[2] The temple was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1969 and named a National Historic Landmark in 1977. Prior to March 5, 2024, it was owned and operated by Community of Christ (previously known as the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (RLDS)) for more than a century. Since that date, it has been owned and operated by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) as a historic site open year-round for guided tours, meetings, and other programming.

Beginning in 1831, members of the Church of Christ (Latter Day Saints), under the direction of church founder Joseph Smith, began to gather in the Kirtland area. In December 1832, Smith stated he received a revelation that called for the construction of a house of worship, education, and order. On December 27, 1832, Smith announced that the temple would be built. On May 6, 1833, Smith stated he had received a revelation from God, directing members of the church to construct "a house ... wholly dedicated unto the Lord for the work of the presidency," "dedicated unto the Lord from the foundation thereof, according to the order of the priesthood." The First Presidency, Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, and Frederick G. Williams, presided over the laying of the temple cornerstone at a ceremony held on July 23, 1833. The first cornerstone was laid at the southeast corner with construction immediately following. - Kirtland Temple

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