In the Old Testament the Lord invited the Elders of Israel to come up into the Mountain with Moses. However, initially as he spoke with them, he caused the elders to stand at the base of the mountain and gave them the 10 Commandments and come other laws and requirements of purification that he expected they observe before coming up into the Holy Mountain. Unfortunately, while Moses was away, the people made the golden calf, and engaged in idol worship. Consequently, a preparatory Law of Moses was given to the people with additional outward rules and requirements of purification to enter the Jewish Temple.
Today, temples and the everlasting gospel are available to all kingdoms, nations, tongues, and peoples, and not just one nation. However, the rules and requirements of individual inward purification are still required. Paul in 1 Corinthians 5:11 says "But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat."
Now, while no one is absolutely perfect in this life, their is a minimum standard of holiness and inward purity that we can achieve and which the Lord expects. 1 Cor 5:11 is the basis for the purification requirements of the New Testament Temple:
Fornication: all moral sin is forbidden. All Christian disciples are expected to observe strict abstinence before marriage and complete fidelity within marriage.
Covetous: we are to live God more than money. A wonderful measure and gauge of this is that all Christian disciples are required to pay a full tithing or 10% of their increase to Christ's Church. In the temple we covenant to consecrate and devote all we have to God, but 10% is the minimum to enter the temple. It doesn't make sense to want to covenant to give 100%, when we can't give 10%.
Idolater: All Christian disciples should posses a love and testimony of Jesus Christ as their Savior, as well as their faith and testimony in the Restoration of the Gospel in the Last Days through Joseph Smith which continues on to the present with our current Prophet President Thomas S. Monson.
Railer: Christian disciples worthy of the Lord's House should never be guilty of any type of abuse to wife or offspring.
Drunkard: Isaiah warns us of "following after strong drink" and allowing "wine to inflame us". Similarly, the Word of Wisdom which is the Lord's Latter-day law of health which requires that we abstain from any alcohol, tobacco, coffee, tea or any other type of illicit drugs.
Extortioner: We should be honest in all our dealings with our fellow man avoiding any type of lying, cheating, or stealing.
During the time of the Law of Moses, if a Jew were to become unclean, he would have to come before the Priest and confess his uncleanliness, and submit to the requirements of purification, and return to the Priest after fulfilling these requirements and be declared ritually pure to enter into the Temple. Today, the New Testament LDS Bishop serves as a Judge in Israel in the same way the Priest did in the Old Testament. LDS Bishop's are not necessarily "preachers." Sermons and lessons on Sunday are assigned out and given by the members to members. Bishop's are tasked with receiving confession, assisting with repentance and the determination of the requirements of purification, and in determining ritual purity for a person to participate in the rites and ordinances of the gospel such as the Lord's Supper or Sacrament every Sunday and in determining worthiness to go to the LDS Temple. The Bishop also helps with the poor and needy under his stewardship.
Someone asked why the requirements to not drink beer will keep you out of the temple while the Word of Wisdom requirement to "eat food in its season" is not generally observed in America and is not required. The answer is that 1 Cor 5:11 discusses drunkenness as the requirement. Nevertheless, the American people are not immune from the grave health consequences of eating foods loaded with preservatives.
It is well recognized in scripture in D&C 1, that the people of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are far from perfect. The Lord says he is pleased with His church "collectively and not individually". And in another place, the Lord says that the church is under condemnation for neglecting the Book of Mormon. So, it can be said, that the LDS Church is under some degree of condemnation. The people of the church have not become perfected yet and therefore, we are not enjoying all the blessings me might enjoy and will one day enjoy in the Millennium when Christ's Kingdom will become perfected. In a way, we are sojourning through the Deserts of Sinai. I am sure there weren't many converts who saw Israel out in the desert and were attracted to come join God's people as they suffered through their days of chastisement.
Temple, Constitution, and Self-Government
If you really understood and loved the great Constitution of the United States, then you should immediately love the LDS Temple as a great institution and mechanism of freedom and social therapy and rehabilitation. The Money Elite who control this world are ready to destroy the American Empire they have Infiltrated, Corrupted, and Subverted and move on to China. They would like us in America, who will survive the great tribulations that they have already begun to unleash upon us, to believe that Constitutional and Representative Democracy is a failed experiment no more noteworthy than Greece or Rome.
In the mind of the Power and Money Elite, man is incapable of governing himself. According to them, man is corrupt, completely controlled by his passions, and requires some sort of monarchy, or oligarchy to rule over him. The Constitution, on the other hand, is established on the premise that all men are created equal, all men should be subject to the same laws, and that man can and should be able to govern himself. However, as Alexis De'Tocqueville commented in "Democracy in America" the Christian Churches and the peoples faith in Christ is what makes Self Government work.
However, we have seen a failure of Christianity in America. Christian Churches are no longer supporting our Constitutional Government by helping their people to govern their own behavior. While the US does not endorse any one Church over another, we do have a national faith that 1. all men will stand before God to be judged. 2. all men are subject and all laws should support and reflect natural law which is the "golden rule" that no man should do to another when he wouldn't want another to do to him. Instead the Money Elite practice a different golden rule: "he who has the gold makes the rules."
Many Christian churches make no requirements and have no expectations of their people. They do not receive confession, they do not assign punishment, and they do not provide social rehabilitation. Most Churches today allow anyone to go through the motions of Christian observance, without any expectations. You can pretty much do whatever you want, and as long as you haven't been arrested, you can be baptized, and partake of the Lord's Supper unworthily. Sure, many Christian Churches will excommunicate if a particular member commits some terrible crime out of embarrassment, but Churches rarely provide mechanisms which allow people to confess their sins before they become public scandals. Consequently, many people look at the hypocrisy of Christianity and become disillusioned with organized religion altogether.
So, I am not saying that there have never been temple-going LDS members who have never committed a terrible crime. There is nothing to prevent a person from lying to their bishop. And there is nothing about being baptized, or taking the Lord's Supper, or going to the Temple that guarantees Eternal Life by themselves. But, what the LDS Church provides is a great system which provides opportunities for all people to make confession, receive correction, receive social/spiritual rehabilitation and rewards and positively reinforces righteous self-government. The LDS Church will forever uphold the foundation principles of our Constitutional Government.
One of the many complaints against the LDS Temple and it's worthiness requirements, is that so many of the requirements are very socially acceptable behaviors. Because of this, it is very easy for people to excuse themselves and rationalize, "Drinking coffee cannot possibly be all that bad since most of good Christian people I know do it." You cannot tell me that only good little LDS people who go to the temple and refuse coffee are going to be blessed and rewarded more than everyone else. God absolutely hates this argument. In fact, this is precisely the argument that God says make a nation ripe for total destruction.
Mosiah 29: 26-27 Now it is not common that the voice of the people desireth anything contrary to that which is right; but it is common for the lesser part of the people to desire that which is not right; therefore this shall ye observe and make it your law—to do your business by the voice of the people. And if the time comes that the voice of the people doth choose iniquity (sin becomes socially acceptable), then is the time that the judgments of God will come upon you; yea, then is the time he will visit you with great destruction even as he has hitherto visited this land.Today, America has and is further undergoing a process of Ideological Subversion and Demoralization. The Power and Money Elite want us to lose faith in the Constitution and America. To do that they need to fill our head with false ideas and propaganda. To get people to accept lies and false propaganda, they need to be corrupted and demoralized. A demoralized person cannot determine truth because truth would cause pierce their conscience and cut them to the very center. The truth tells a wicked demoralized person to change and repent. Change is difficult and painful so, the demoralized person would rather accept lies as reality.
But, the key here is that the real threat to the US is our demoralization and that for the past decades, fornication, pornography, drunkenness, use of other illicit psychoactive substances and drugs is commonplace. The sins of abortion, and same-sex marriage have become false civil rights issues totally neglecting the rights of the child to live and to be raised in a home with both a father and a mother when possible. And if you speak out against the behavior of homosexuality, you are labeled a "homophob" and a "bigot." All these are grave sins, that the true and living God has clearly stated are sinful and are forbidden. While there will aways be a minority of people who struggle with sin and addiction, the problem for America is that we have allowed ourselves to become Demoralized to the point where all these things are now socially acceptable and are not any longer even considered sin.
Why is using any type of psychotropic drug wrong. The brain develops via positive and negative feelings and reinforcement. We are emotional creatures, therefore, good feelings and negative feelings reinforce certain connections in the brain and therefore certain behaviors that lead to better health and better survival fitness. Buy taking psychoactive substances for the purposes of getting "high", this totally short-circuits these mechanisms. In a very real sense, Doing drugs is stealing. You didn't earn that "high" feeling. The feelings of elation should be reserved for moments of accomplishment, discovery, and natural social interactions with family and friends.
Even if you don't believe in God, if you are any student of history, you must recognize that the Power and Money Elite of this world have used the importation of drugs to demoralize, economically drain, and then destroy one empire after another. The economic drain of a nation requires a massive expansion of territory via a military industrial complex to keep an advanced economy going and keep pace with the economic drain from the trade deficit. However, eventually the cost to maintain the trade deficit and the empire becomes to great and the entire Ponzi scheme comes crashing down.
S0, if you love freedom, and you love the Constitution of the United States, come join in the cause to save America by preaching repentance, supporting the re-moralization, and Social and Spiritual Rehabilitation of this country. Many Christians ask why LDS Missionaries preach to other Christians. One main reason is because many Christians require the social and spiritual rehabilitation. LDS Missionaries and Members alike could be considered trained Social and Spiritual Therapist. And we do it all free of charge.
Remember the purpose of the New Testament Temple is inscribed on each one "Holiness to the Lord." The purpose of the LDS Temple is to help reward and reinforce righteous behavior and habits. The covenants and promises of the temple are to consecrate your life to Christ, and to help the poor and needy in exchange for the promise of sanctification or a decrease in the desire for sin. Christ taught the rich young man to have eternal life, "'if thou wilt be made perfect, sell all that thou hast, give to the poor, and come and follow me." Consecration is the covenant of the temple, and Sanctification is the blessing.