Rose Guide to the Temple

By Randall Price

Synopsis: This book is a pictorial tour of the ancient Temple, complete with beautiful and full-colored illustrations, diagrams, charts, and tables on every single page. It also has plastic overlays that the reader can peel away to see behind layers into the structure of the Temple. The book explains the function and meaning (in a Protestant Christian context) of every important element and feature of the Temple, including explanations of the sacred Feasts, the sacrifices, the duties of the priests and Levites, history and timelines, and each object located both without and within the Temple. A detailed look at the three iterations of the temple are given, as well as an analysis of the future temple described by Ezekiel. It is printed on glossy paper, and ring bound, yet with a binder-like hard cover. This book is part of a series of Rose Guides.

Strong Points: This book is a fantastic aid in understanding the look and function of the Temple(s) in ancient Israel. It is remarkably successful in giving the reader a clear understanding of everything about the Temple that they might want to know. The reader will not be disappointed with the quality of the diagrams and illustrations and will be very pleased with the range of topics covered in this short book. As far as a resource on information on the ancient Temples, there is no need to look elsewhere: This book is really the quintessential study of the ancient Temples and reading it will help the reader understand so much about the context within the Bible, the life of ancient Israelites, and the activities of Christ during his mortal ministry. In addition to being a valuable treasure trove of information, this book is a visual delight that will dazzle the reader.

Weak Points: One thing that will be troubling for the Latter-day Saint is the book’s use of unfamiliar versions of the Bible, instead of the authorized King James Version with its beautiful poetic rendering of the text. One thing that was strange was that the book only considered there to be two Temples: The Temple of Solomon and the Temple of Zerubbabel/Temple of Herod. I think it’s more proper to consider the Temple of Herod a third Temple, although it was a renovation of the second Temple, the existing structure had to be removed entirely before the superior Temple of Herod could be constructed in its stead. Of course, the biggest problem with the book is that it was written from a Protestant Christian perspective, and not a Latter-day Saint perspective, which resulted in a few doctrinal differences when it came to things like interpreting the meaning of the New Jerusalem.

Interesting: 5/5

Must Read: 3.5/5

Overall: 4.5/5

Pages: 143

Selected Quote: “It was said that this court [of the Women] was often filled with singing and dancing. One occasion when such a celebration occurred in this court was the annual water-drawing ceremony when a priest drew spring water from the Pool of Siloam and carried it to the temple to pour on the altar. This ceremony took place during the conclusion of the annual celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles (Booths), and its purpose in this act was to ask God to send rain which was necessary for a successful harvest. It was on this last day of the Feast of Tabernacles that Jesus taught in the Court of the Women saying, 'Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink’ and ‘rivers of living water will flow from within them’ (John 7:37-39). Jesus was speaking about the outpouring of the Holy Spirit – the promise associated with the Messiah’s coming – which like the rain, depended on the proper response from Israel.
“In each of the four corners of the Court of the Women stood two immense menorot (lampstands). These were lit day and night, especially at festival occasions such as the Feast of Tabernacles. During this festival, Jesus took the opportunity, while these majestic lampstands were still lit, to point to his own messianic purpose to be ‘the light of the world’ (John 8:12).” (p. 80).


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