The Word: Temples in the Old Testament

Published 10:31 am Saturday, February 4, 2023

All are invited to an open house for the Richmond Virginia Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, located at 10915 Staples Mill Road in Glen Allen. The general public is invited to tour the temple from Saturday, March 25, through Saturday, April 15, with no tours held on Sundays or on Saturday, April 1. The temple will be dedicated on May 7, by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

Excitement among Latter-day Saints in the greater Richmond area is growing as the temple open house and dedication draw near. 

The temple is the House of the Lord, where members learn about God’s eternal plan and make covenants to keep His commandments and follow Jesus Christ.

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The temple was central to worship in ancient times, as recorded in the Old Testament.

The children of Israel were commanded to build a tabernacle to make covenants, offer sacrifices, and meet the Lord (Exodus 25:8, 29:43, 40:12-16; Deuteronomy 31:15).

When Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem, he did so utilizing the finest materials and employing the most talented craftsmen (1 Chronicles 22:11-16, 29:4). 

At the temple’s dedication, King Solomon taught that the temple was a house of prayer, of repentance, and of forgiveness (see 1 Kings 8). 

The prophet Isaiah clearly saw the temple in vision, including its role as a place of learning: 

“And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the tops of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.

“And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem” (2:2-3).

Many psalms extol the peace and perspective that comes from worshiping God in His holy temple. 

“I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth” (Psalm 138:2). 

“The Lord is in his holy temple” (Psalm 11:4; Habakkuk 2:20). 

“One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple” (Psalm 27:4).

The temple is a place where we can inquire of God, seek His will, and receive the inspiration, guidance, and strength we need.

I extend a heartfelt invitation to attend the open house and experience the temple for yourself.

For more information about temples, please visit 

Dr. Brent Roberts is the Branch President in the Sandy River Branch, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and also Dean of Greenwood Library at Longwood University. He can be reached at