Subject: Can temple ordinances change, and have they?
Date: Jan 18 12:55
Author: Deconstructor

Can temple ordinances be changed?

Here's a quote from a recent Ensign Magazine article on temples.

From August 2001 Ensign (page 22), in big bold print above a large colorful portrait of Joseph Smith:

"The Prophet Jospeph Smith taught, 'Ordinances instituted in the heavens before the foundation of the world, in the priesthood, for the salvation of men, are not to be altered or changed.'"

This is from an article specifically on the temple ordinances. The author of the article is a General Authority, so he must know that the temple ordinances have gone through MAJOR revisions over the last 160 years.

To back up the Joseph Smith quote used in the August 2001 issue of the Ensign Magazine:

"No jot, iota, or tittle of the temple rites is otherwise than uplifting and sanctifying. In every detail the endowment ceremony contributes to covenants of morality of life, consecration of person to high ideals, devotion to truth, patriotism to nation, and allegiance to God." Apostle James E. Talmage, The House of the Lord, 1968, p. 84

"Now the purpose in Himself in the winding up scene of the last dispensation is that all things pertaining to that dispensation should be conducted precisely in accordance with the preceding dispensations.... He set the temple ordinances to be the same forever and ever and set Adam to watch over them, to reveal them from heaven to man, or to send angels to reveal them." Joseph Smith, History of the Church, vol.4, p. 208

"As temple work progresses, some members wonder if the ordinances can be changed or adjusted. These ordinances have been provided by revelation, and are in the hands of the First Presidency. Thus, the temple is protected from tampering." W. Grant Bangerter, executive director of the Temple Department and a member of the First Quorum of Seventy, Deseret News, Church Section, January 16, 1982

"...God is unchangeable, the same yesterday, today and forever... The great mistake made down through the ages by teachers of Christianity, is that they have supposed they could place their own private interpretation upon scriptures, allow their own personal convenience to become a controlling factor, and change the basis of Christian law and practice to suit themselves. This is apostacy." Prophet's Message, Church News, June 5, 1965

"...the endowments have never changed and can never change; as I understand it; it has been so testified, and that Joseph Smith Jr., himself was the founder of the endowments." Senator Reed Smoot, Reed Smoot Case, vol. 3, p. 185

" a house to my name, for the Most High to dwell therein. For there is not a place found on earth that he may come to and restore again that which was lost unto you, or which he hath taken away, even the fulness of the priesthood.... And verily I say unto you, let this house be built unto my name, that I may reveal mine ordinances therein... For I deign to reveal unto my church things which have been kept hid from before the foundation of the world, things that pertain to the dispensation of the fulness of times. And I will show unto my servant Joseph all things pertaining to this house, and the priesthood thereof, and the place whereon it shall be built." Jesus Christ Himself, Doctrine and Covenants 124:27-28, 40-42

"The Gospel can not possibly be changed.... the saving principles must ever be the same. They can never change.... the Gospel must always be the same in all of its parts.... no one can change the Gospel... if they attempt to do so, they only set up a man-made system which is not the Gospel, but is merely a reflection of their own views.... if we substitute 'any other Gospel,' there is no salvation in it.... the Lord and His Gospel remain the same--always." Prophet's Message, Church News, June 5, 1965

Here's the Paradox:

The temple sealing ceremony (which is required for salvation) itself has gone through major changes over the years. so have the very covenants in the teple. In fact, the ordinances and teachings in the temple endowment ceremony went through a significant change as recently as April 1990!


If these were divinely restored in their complete form from "the foundation of the world" then why have they kept changing? And if Smith says they can never be altered OR changed, how come the Church did it? Who got it wrong, the prophet Smith or his only true Church? Either way, it smells like a hoax.

The pure falsity of the church is right there in their own magazine. If you dare, tell your TBM friends and families to read that quote and explain the paradox.

Don't take my word for it. Here' a comprehensive list of all the changes in the temple covenants, ceremonies and ordinances made in April 1990:

Watch out for TBMs that will try squirming around the contradiction by saying the ceremony is just a vehicle for the ordinance. If it's just a vehicle, then what IS the ordinance? If it includes the covenants, oaths, handshakes, signs, keywords or even words at the veil, then they HAVE changed.

We're not talking about a blessing or a prayer that can be changed. We're talking about revealed temple ordinances.

The words in the temple ordinances are just as revealed and un-alterable as the words in the sacrament prayer. The ordinance of sealing must be said correctly, just like the temple endowment ceremony or it's not valid. TBMs know the reason for this is that they are revealed as the saving ordinances that can't change. Christ in the BoM said this very thing when he gave the Nephites the exact same words used today for the sacrament. The temple ordinances are no different.

If it's true that current practices in mormon ordinances are just vehicles that can be altered, then who's to say that baptism wont change? Maybe sprinkling of water is enough for baptism. It's just a vehicle, right?

What about those poor young Priests in Sacrament Meeting who happen to say a word wrong in the sacrament prayer? Why embarrass them and make them say it EXACTLY right, if the words are just a "vehicle?"

No, this just reveals another damning paradox in Mormonism that is too hard for TBMs to handle honestly.

Subject: Re: Can temple ordinances change, and have they?
Date: Jan 18 13:10
Author: Puffrider

One of many things that led to my severe doubting of the church was the change in the temple ceremony in 1990. For the record I left in 1991. As my ex-wife and I drove from the Seattle temple with another couple who went with us (also recently divorced, ironically), I started expressing my shock and surprise at the changes in the ceremony. I was severely chastised by the other three occupants in my vehicle for discussing sacred temple things outside the temple. I said that since we were all recommend holders we ought to be able to discuss in in a vehicle going down I-90 at 70 mph! Your post are always excellent and mind compelling Deconstructor, but your question may be technically flawed. The ceremony did change indeed, but as far as ordinances changing that is debatable.

Subject: Ceremony AND ordinances changed..
Date: Jan 18 13:49
Author: Deconstructor

What part of the temple rituals are ceremony and which are ordinances?

I'd like to see someone take a shot at that and create a list of what TBMs classify as temple ceremony and temple ordinance.

Aren't the covenants made in the temple considered ordinances?

Aren't temple sealings considered ordinances?

Isn't the temple washing and annointing an ordinance?

If so, they have all undergone multiple changes, the most recent in 1990. If the above are not ordinances, then what are they? And what is left to be considered as unchangeable ordinances?

What was Joseph Smith referring to when he said the temple ordinances are not to be altered or changed?

I'm not sure ceremonies are in a special "can be changed" category anyway. Who in authority ever said temple cermonies can change?

Subject: Yes, and yes.
Date: Jan 18 13:16
Author: edy

Political and social pressure can bring about many changes.
  • leaving the homeland
  • abandoning plural marriage
  • shortening the length of temple rituals
  • eliminating death oaths in the temple
  • allowing all races to hold the priesthood
  • abbreviating garments

These and dozens of other changes have been instituted by the brethren because of pressures from within and outside of the church. You see, the brethren know there is no divine mandate to keep things constant despite their assertions to the contrary.

Subject: the morgbots are so clueless, if they would just....
Date: Jan 18 13:38
Author: danboyle

if the so-called leaders would quit crediting GOD and REVELATION and EVERLASTING to all the hokey things they come up with, then changes would not be a problem. But these so-called leaders box themselves in every time, with these outlandish claims of direct revelation. it's entertaining to watch now that I'm ex-tbm

Subject: Yeah, that's a good question...
Date: Jan 18 13:59
Author: Deconstructor

Why do Mormon leaders, especially early Mormon leaders, make such a big deal out of the everlasting, unchangeable nature of God and their revelations?

For example, Brigham Young didn't just say blacks wouldn't have the priesthood for a dozen or so decades. He said they would never get it until after the millenium. Other church leaders said they would never get it.

Early church leaders said the "law" of plural marriage would always be a requirement for exaltation. They said the church would never reject polygamy as long as it was true.

Even now, church leaders and their "Proclamation on the Family" make eternal and unchangeable declarations.

All of these "never" "forever" and "unalterable" laws and claims by church leaders just get them into trouble. SO WHY DO THEY DO IT?

What value is there in declaring their teachings and doctrines to be eternal and unchangeable?

Subject: hey decon - not only that by BY said.............
Date: Jan 18 14:19
Author: justanotherexo

if a white person married a black person they would die on the spot. That's god's law and it will alway be that way and never change. I know this is not "verbatium" but it's basically what he said.

This is one of many BY quotes that helped me to say "that's it, I want out" after only a few years of being mormon.

BTW - keep it up, as usual your posts are great !!

Subject: Is it possible that...
Date: Jan 18 15:00
Author: JusThinkin

some of the leaders, being the strong willed individuals that they typically are, just want to have things 'their way' while they're here? Maybe they're not really very concerned about what happens to the church after they pass on, they just want to keep things the way they like them and consider it to be their right to do so.

More or less like the typical dictator, not that I'm saying that LDS prez's are dictators. I would guess that Saddam Hussein for example, isn't very concerned about what happens to anyone or anything after he's gone, but he sure wants to keep things going the way he wants them while he's here.

I dunno, just a thought, maybe I should quit JusThinkin now.

Subject: Re: Yeah, that's a good question...
Date: Jan 18 15:18
Author: MRM

That's a good point about ever lasting. A few years ago the SP spent the entire hour telling us the "Brethren" were very concern that we teach "correct principles" so that nothing will change for the next generation or forever.

I thought, "Gee, it has been less than 100 years that some of the 'Brethren' had several wives." Let along all the other changes.

If they really want to teach "correct principles" they should teach that many things will change over time. And I hope it does. There are many injustices in this world. Plus who wants to live in a world that doesn't change.

Subject: It still says that!
Date: Jan 18 15:52
Author: rpcman

Deconstructor wrote:
> Early church leaders said the "law" of plural marriage would always be a requirement for exaltation.

You can't read D&C 132 in context and not say that Mormons don't believe that plural marriage is not the new and ***everlasting*** covenant. That they now claim celestial marriage to be temple, rather than plural, marriage just means they can't comprehend, or don't want to comprehend, their own scriptures.

Subject: Regarding D&C: 132
Date: Jan 18 16:32
Author: justanotherex,p

The way I read verse 61 and 62 if you want to enter into plural marriage you (1) have to have permission from your first wife and (2) every woman you marry must be a virgin.

I really wonder how many of the plural wives of the leaders of the church were virgins?

This is another thing that I had problems with and made me say - that's it I'm out of here !!

Subject: All the statements regarding the non-changing nature of the
Date: Jan 18 15:13
Author: MoNoMo

ordinances were of course made by individuals who were speaking as a man. When those words were uttered, the spirit was grieved and withdrew itself.

Hey, this sounds like a good excuse as any, doesn't it?

"So let's keep changing this sh*t!!" Thus saith the Lord.


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