This is a common question that most members of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints have been asked.
To begin to answer this question, we need to go back to Biblical times.
God has always commanded his people to build temples, as witnessed with the Israelites, Solomon, and others.
These temples were used in order to feel of God’s love, make sacred promises with Him, and perform ordinances.
Since we beleive that God is the same “yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8), we have been called to do the same here in the last days.
Why Can’t Just Anyone Enter LDS Temples?
To answer that question, let me ask you this-
Why can’t you drive without a license?
Why do you need a ticket to see a movie?
Why can’t you board an airplane without the proper documentation?
There are certain standards that qualify someone to do these things: taking and passing the driver’s test, purchasing a ticket (and being of age), being authorized for a passport, etc.
The standard for entering an LDS Temple is being a member of the church for at least one year and recieving a temple recommend from their Bishop or Branch President. It’s pretty simple.
There’s a conception that Mormons are “exclusive” because of they don’t allow non-members to enter Temples.
But this isn’t the case at all- in fact, we invite everyone to learn about and qualify to enter. Just as you would prepare for anything else that requires a certain standard, we invite all to begin on a path that would lead to recieving the blessings associated with the temple.
Elder Russell M. Nelson explained it this way:
“Anyone may enter who is willing to prepare well for that privilege. The concept of preparation prevails in other fields of endeavor. I remember when I was but a young boy, I told my parents I wanted to attend the university. They said I could, but only if I worked hard in preliminary schooling and met all the requirements for admission to the university. Similarly, we must qualify for admission to the temple. We prepare physically, intellectually, and spiritually.”
“Each [Temple] stands as a beacon to the world, an expression of our testimony that God, our Eternal Father, lives, that He desires to bless us and, indeed, to bless His sons and daughters of all generations.” -Thomas S. Monson
Go Inside a Mormon Temple – My Invitation
If any of this sounds interesting to you, here is your personal invitation from me to see the inside of an LDS Temple. Here in Meridian, Idaho, a temple was just finished, and we’re inviting you to the Open House.
This is your chance to go inside.
I’m happy to meet up with anyone who would like to attend this open house and answer any questions that you have.
The open house starts October 22, 2017 and goes through November 11. You can make a reservation here.
I encourage you, whether you’re a member of the church or not, to attend this open house. I’ve felt a great deal of peace in the temple, which is what this sometimes dark world needs right now.
Here is a preview of what you might see during a temple open house (this one is from the Rome, Italy temple):
Update: Since the Open House has now passed, you can go here to see temples that have Open Houses scheduled.
For more information on temples, visit LDS.org.