Cedar Fort Publishing and Media: Behind the Scenes

Finding the Temple in the Book of Mormon

Episode Summary

There are no Temple ordinances specifically talked about in the Book of Mormon but Valiant Jones has discovered that the entire book is a guidebook for the covenants we make in the temple. He believes that Joseph Smith was prepared to receive the covenants for the temple by translating the Book of Mormon. Find out more about how to find the temple in the Book of Mormon!

Episode Notes

There are no Temple ordinances specifically talked about in the Book of Mormon but Valiant Jones has discovered that the entire book is a guidebook for the covenants we make in the temple. He believes that Joseph Smith was prepared to receive the covenants for the temple by translating the Book of Mormon.  Find out more about how to find the temple in the Book of Mormon! 

Episode Transcription

welcome to Cedar Fort Publishing and  

Media behind-the-scenes. I'm Valerie  

Loveless and I will be your host today,  

and with me I have Valiant K Jones. he is  

the author of the Covenant path finding  

the temple in the Book of Mormon  

welcome Valiant thank you it's good to  

be here and you go by Val so that's what  

we'll be calling you for the rest of the  

podcast  

okay I do not go by Val so don't call me  

that  

all right good confused that way good so  

welcome thank you thank you it's good to  

be here yes so let's talk about your  

book I mean that's why you're here your  

book it's already out so in some places  

it's I think everybody can get it  

probably on  

have you checked cedar for comment sir  

yeah I don't I know Amazon doesn't have  

it yet today it goes out in the area  

bookstores good in desert books today  

good so what's the official launch day  

then we'll have it by the time this airs  

maybe so  

yeah hopefully they will they should  

unless it's unless it's sold out already  

unless they've they've gotten too many  

pre-orders or something Amazon should  

have it by the time this airs so tell me  

about the premise of your book the  

Covenant path finding the temple in the  

Book of Mormon the the idea for the book  

began in 1996 we were studying the Book  

of Mormon we'd been doing it every four  

years for a long time now I think since  

since Spencer W Kimball and that year in  

the gospel doctrine class that I  

attended in Midland Michigan a friend  

taught the class and he's just a great  

gospel scholar and he just kind of been  

passing right in the first or second  

week said said something that I point  

out in the preface of the book he said  

something like this Nephi was a great  

example of obedience  

and he and his family made great  

personal sacrifices as they traveled  

through the wilderness and across oceans  

to reach their new promised land Lehi  

taught his family the gospel and Jacob  

taught the importance of chastity and  

this brother this gospel doctrine  

teacher continued I also expect that  

when they arrived in the promised land  

they probably had a special prayer and  

consecrated themselves to God so this  

this caught my attention you know yeah  

he was he was speaking a pattern that I  

recognized it was obedience sacrifice  

the gospel chastity and consecration and  

and he didn't make a big point of that  

and didn't draw any connection to the  

temple he just said that but several s  

of us in the room drew a connection to  

the covenants of the temple and some of  

his points were conjecture you know to  

say they maybe had a prayer of  

dedicating themselves or consecrating  

themselves and and and it wasn't real  

firm but some were so obviously there is  

like we all know that that Nephi and  

obedience it was it was his theme of his  

life you know I will go I will do and  

and I'd never really thought about how  

much sacrifice their family had to go  

through but it was obviously their  

Jacobs sermon on chastity is that the  

strongest sermon on chastity in all of  

Scripture his point that Lehi taught the  

gospel intrigue me and chaste and and  

and no consecration where is that so I  

started thinking about it and started  

studying it and just kind of mulling it  

over in my mind and and as I read my  

scriptures I think about it and as I  

went to the temple I would think about  

it and things just started falling into  

place to where I started to see that  

there was actually a very strong pattern  

in the early part of the Book of Mormon  

primarily this  

all plates of Nephi but extending even a  

little bit farther into King Benjamin's  

sermon which I really point out is about  

consecration Minh other-- thing that  

came into play was on my mission  

this was 1976 preparing for my mission I  

had heard the phrase the law of the  

gospel and it cost me to wonder what is  

meant by the term the gospel I was in  

Argentina and there weren't a lot of  

resources books around but I did it just  

a scripture study on what is the gospel  

and I found lots of verses that define  

the gospel and they define it as it's  

focused on the atonement of Jesus Christ  

particularly his his crucifixion and  

resurrection and and the atonement and  

how he will decide that many people are  

are saved at the day of judgment so it  

focuses on Christ but then it also  

teaches the what we call the first  

principles of the gospel faith  

repentance baptism holy the ghost and  

enduring to the end so I had that  

background of understanding what the  

gospel is so that came into play and so  

I look at the small place of Nephi and I  

see that in first Nephi we've got  

Nephi's focus on obedience the families  

struggle and their sacrifices so I say  

Oh first Nephi is all about obedience  

and sacrifice and I look at 2nd Nephi  

and the entire book can be claimed to  

follow the theme of the gospel  

it starts with chapters 2 and 9 that are  

the that greatest dissertations in all  

of scripture on the atonement of Jesus  

Christ his his resurrection what he does  

for us in the Day of Judgment and then  

at the end of the book  

we get Nephi's dissertation on the  

doctrine of Christ which is an  

equivalent term for the gospel and he  

teaches about faith repentance baptism  

the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end  

and in the middle chapters including the  

Isaiah chapters we get again more focus  

on Christ what we get chapter 25 where  

Nephi writes we talk of Christ we preach  

of Christ and we get the witnesses of  

Isaiah and we get a lot about apostasy  

and restoration which are parts of the  

gospel so I begin to see this pattern  

and so I analyzed each book through what  

I call a sub theme and the sub theme  

then of second Nephi is the gospel then  

Jacob as I said has the most powerful  

sermon on on chastity in all of  

Scripture but I analyzed his entire book  

through the lens of family and and  

chested the law of chastity and I I find  

even that the the allegory that he has  

in the in that we sometimes get bogged  

down in the allegory of zenith at the  

end there's a lot about nourishing and  

and there's a lot we can relate to  

families there when when we need to  

nourish and we need to nourish the the  

good vines and and and and sometimes  

discard the the the wild vines of our  

nature and also nourish our families let  

me say at this point before I talk about  

the other books I searched for  

consecration I'm like consecrations  

gotta be here someplace you know it's  

just gotta be everything else is here  

and and those that know the pattern of  

the the covenants of the temple which  

I'll speak of a little  

more later and and how elder Bednar has  

given us permission to talk about those  

know that the final one then is  

consecration and I found then at the end  

of the book of Omni that the final  

writer a Malachi says come unto Christ  

and offer your whole souls as an  

offering unto Him and I'm like wow is  

there any better description of  

consecration to that but also I thought  

about King Benjamin who talked so much  

about service about losing yourself to  

the Lord about you can't give enough to  

the Lord we're unprofitable servants we  

can't do enough and I discovered quotes  

from elder Maxwell who just said that  

King Benjamin is such a tremendous  

example of consecration and that his  

whole sermon is about consecration and  

so there it was I found consecration so  

then I'm saying okay but there's a  

couple more books in there there's eNOS  

and jerem and I remember the day  

standing in a prayer circle in the  

temple and it just dawned on me that  

there's so much correlation between eNOS  

prayer and what I was experiencing at  

that moment and we prayer circles are  

openly acknowledged in the church that  

they exist we have prayer roles we can  

there's websites that give phone numbers  

to put people's names on prayer roles  

and I decided to analyze eNOS not just  

through normal prayer but through  

prayers and temples and then jerem where  

does jerem fit in well jeremy introduces  

his book using speaking of family like  

everybody else does with their book but  

then he used the word genealogy he says  

that his father told him to write this  

book so that their genealogy  

could be kept and it struck me  

jerem is a witness that we need to be  

doing family history research when we do  

we sometimes search out people that we  

have very little written about and jerem  

as well as the early the first few  

writers of the book of omne some of them  

only wrote a verse they have very little  

to go on but they left a little bit of a  

record telling us that they exist so I  

analyzed the Book of Jeremiah first few  

writers of the book of Omni through the  

lens of family history research each of  

these early books in in the Book of  

Mormon are meant to be handbooks and to  

understand the temple and our covenants  

that we make in the temple now we know  

that the main purpose purposes of the  

Book of Mormon they're stated in in the  

title page it's to come into Christ and  

to to remember our covenants and to know  

our covenants well those are the main  

purposes I propose that there are sub  

those are the main themes and the main  

purpose of the book but there are sub  

themes that support that if we if we are  

going to know our our covenants then  

would it make sense that God would put  

within this book specific instruction on  

those specific covenants that we are to  

me let's talk about analyzing things you  

say analyzing it through the lens and  

you're finding these overarching  

principles in each of these books so how  

does that work can you take me through  

your process a little bit and explain  

how you do that and how other people can  

do that how we can kind of look at the  

scriptures differently maybe take a  

bigger picture I am NOT a seminary  

teacher an Institute teacher I you know  

we all have different callings in the  

church and I've taught classes and and  

studied the gospel like we all do  

but I grew up loving math and science  

and loving the logical approach of it  

and in my career which I stayed in the  

technical side of my career and I had to  

a chemical engineer takes what the  

chemist does on his lab bench with  

beakers and flasks and translates it to  

a very large industrial process so I  

would sit down with chemists who figured  

out a process of how to make a new  

chemical and I make lots of notes as  

they explained all of the steps they go  

through and I'd have to lay that out  

step by step break it down into  

incremental steps because a computer is  

going to control this process on an  

industrial level in a 10,000 gallon  

reactor and you can't just pick up your  

beaker and stick it in an ice bath what  

it needs cooled and you have to you have  

to consider all of the different side  

reactions that could go on and the  

thermodynamic ramifications of runaway  

reactions and so you had to break  

everything down into minut steps and you  

had to consider all of of the side  

things that could go on you had to I had  

to program all kinds of different alarm  

situations for every reaction and then I  

would program these or lay out someone  

else usually do the program but I had to  

design the programming for how computers  

would would control these reactions on  

in  

Industrial skill so I was used to taking  

something and breaking it apart into  

substance and trying to figure out how  

things interacted and so that's how I  

approached the small plates of Nephi so  

first of all I went through it many  

times like I said this began in 1996 and  

I started writing some things in the  

early 2000s but I got so busy with my  

career and raising family and church  

callings took a copy of the Book of  

Mormon and at noon at work I'd go to our  

work fitness center and I'd be on a  

treadmill or on a bike and I I took a a  

paperback copy of the Book of Mormon  

tore the cover off tore out pages this  

is before cellphones  

this is the early 2000s took pages with  

me and set them in front of me you know  

a a a chapter or two and set them in  

front of me as I exercised and another  

sheet of paper and it's kind of hard to  

make notes while I'm pedaling a bike but  

I did it and excellent multitasking yeah  

and I just would just calm as I as I'd  

write and and it just start coming on by  

seeing the Book of Mormon through this  

lens and reading first Nephi as once  

you've got to say about obedience and  

sacrifice just I'm just focused on  

obedience and sacrifice and picking out  

the bits and pieces about that and then  

second Nephi once it got to say about  

the gospel and I make these notes and  

they all ended up in a folder - and then  

when I retired a few years ago these  

folders finally came out and I shifted  

from a full-time job as a chemical  

engineer to a full-time job is taking  

all these years of notes and some  

scrawling x' that i could hardly read  

because they were written while i was on  

a  

exercise exercise like and trying to  

make some sense of those but you know in  

the meantime I've had new insights and  

new thoughts and at first I just I just  

got a write pot of god and then try to  

put it back together and redo it and I  

in the act on the exercise bike I hadn't  

gotten past second Nephi I may be a  

little bit into into Jacob but I still  

had a lot more to analyze and I just  

went through it all over again and would  

read each chapter and make notes on how  

how it applied to this sub-theme each  

book and insights would come and more  

insights came while I was writing then  

while I was reading and making notes I  

it was amazing I have such respect for  

writers now I think that's a great  

example of anybody who's out there  

listening who wants to be a writer but  

you feel like you can't write a gospel  

base book because you're not a BYU  

professor you know you don't have to be  

a B wipe you professor I mean the way  

I've talked to quite a few of them I'm  

related to some of them and I mean the  

way they get to where they're at is by  

diligent study and and constant you know  

just review of these things and deep  

thought and pondering and any of us can  

do that we don't have to be that is  

exactly right  

we are all we're all just people yeah we  

are we are all gifted with with an  

intellect and with pondering boy the  

pondering  

I think the twenty some years of  

pondering really played into the final  

product too if I I thought I wanted to  

write an article to submit to the ensign  

in the early 2000 that's what I was  

working on and they're just there just  

wasn't the time and and and I plus the  

more I got into it it's like no this  

isn't an art  

this is a book and but the continued  

pondering and I I loved going to the  

temple because it gave me an extra way  

to look at the endowment and so I would  

think about these things there and it  

and and sometimes I get so excited with  

a new insight I could hardly wait to get  

to the celestial room and share with my  

wife a new thought that came because I  

was while I was at home reading the Book  

of Mormon I was reading The Book of  

Mormon through the lens of the temple  

and when I was at the temple I was  

viewing the temple ceremony through the  

lens of what I was reading in the Book  

of Mormon and I think that that time is  

important sometimes how do you write  

about the sacredness of the temple with  

and keep the respect of the ordinances  

and the things that we've been asked you  

know to keep yeah sacred yes and I was  

worried about that all along and I was  

like you know I wouldn't tell many  

people about what I was thinking about I  

mostly just shared with my wife and and  

when I told people when I was retiring I  

told him I'm gonna do a book that  

analyzes the small plates of Nephi and I  

just left it at that because I wasn't  

sure myself how how much I should draw  

correlation but the more I got into the  

research the more I found all these  

quotes from prophets and other leaders  

were they they list the the covenant  

topics of the temple and as I point out  

in the introduction to my book it's kind  

of like what the Lord says in Doctrine  

and Covenants  

that we know that the name of the  

Melchizedek Priesthood wasn't always  

called that it was called the holy  

priesthood after the order of the son of  

God but out of respect and to not  

overuse that those terms  

the Lord said let's call the Melchizedek  

Priesthood after the name of this Great  

King Melchizedek but that doesn't mean  

that we don't know the ER  

name we just don't use it every day  

mm-hmm and that's why I what I point out  

is the truth with the covenants of the  

temple there's there have been many  

prophets that have pointed out what they  

are but we don't see it very often  

because we respect it and and so that's  

the approach I took and also the other  

approaches I'm not going to talk about  

the temple I'm going to talk about the  

principles behind the covenants and  

those how many talks are there on  

obedience on sacrifice on the gospel on  

chastity on consecration you can go do a  

search and find all kinds of conference  

talks on every one of those and so I  

became more and more comfortable laying  

it out just talking about those  

principles and and last March about  

mid-march I felt pretty good with my  

manuscript and I was ready to send it to  

publishers but I thought you know  

conference is two weeks away I'm gonna  

wait because there there could be  

another good quote that I just want to  

throw in there and then elder Bednar  

says and I'm gonna read it from the back  

cover of my book he said we may discuss  

the doctrine and principles associated  

with temple ordinances and covenants and  

then he laid out what they are the law  

of obedience the law of sacrifice the  

law of the gospel the law of chastity  

and the law of consecration well like  

many of you I was watching a conference  

in my own home and I just blurted out I  

can't believe it I jumped out of my  

chair that's what my book is about and  

and so I I swapped out a quoted them in  

the introductory chapter by President  

Hinckley and put it in my appendix of  

all these quotes I have on the topic and  

put elder Bednar right right up front  

where he said this and it  

just struck me the timing and I I think  

that the Lord is opening up many people  

to this approach now is the time as we  

prepare for his second coming now is the  

time to speak a little more openly not  

about the ceremony per se but about  

these covenants and and the this  

covenant path and that that President  

Nelson is emphasizing so much so I I  

think there are many people and we're  

gonna see more and more books that are  

gonna talk about this and I'm grateful  

to be one and to have mine right right  

ready to go when he gave us permission  

to to talk more openly but I I don't  

really talk about the ceremonies of the  

temple very much very little very little  

but these these topic principles so so  

with that background  

you asked about about the experiences  

one of them I mentioned I think just  

standing in a prayer circle and  

realizing eNOS went to the woods to pray  

and how many temples are we surrounded  

by a scene of a wooded Garden of Eden  

and beautiful type scenery and eNOS had  

a very structured prayer where he prayed  

first for his family and fellow Nephites  

second for for the the Lamanites and  

then for the future descendants of Lehi  

it was a very structured prayer we could  

call it he gave us an ordered of prayer  

an order of Prayer and president Nelson  

has used the term an order of Prayer  

saying that it is a prayer that is given  

under the influence of the Holy Ghost  

and  

and when the Holy Ghost can guide you in  

what to pray for I I realized that eNOS  

was being guided in what he was praying  

for because the things he prayed for are  

exactly the things that that Nephi and  

Lehi and his father Jacob had prayed for  

that that the that even if the Nephites  

lost the truth that the Lamanites would  

save it forever and we who know the end  

of the book know that eNOS the yeah that  

eNOS is prayer was an inspired prayer he  

was guided by the Holy Ghost in what to  

pray for and I realized that I was in  

that temple receiving a similar  

experience in in in that prayer that was  

one choice thing there there are other  

choice choice experiences one just not  

so much related to the the ceremony but  

just my own sacred experience with with  

the ancestors and grandfather beyond the  

veil that just as a witness to me that  

sacred things happen in sacred places  

and I tell about that when talking about  

how Nephi went to the Mount to seek  

guidance from God and our Mount is the  

mount of the temple and so I tell about  

a choice experience of going to the  

temple and and being blessed just just  

have my deceased grandfather with me and  

and having a conversation in in my mind  

through the spirit and receiving  

instruction from him in my own life so  

some of that initially I didn't I wasn't  

going to have person  

experiences but my elder sister who read  

an early draft of it said Val you gotta  

put stories in there and she point now  

you need a story here you need a story  

here you need a story here and so I and  

I I wasn't even I was only about halfway  

through the first draft and and I kind  

of shifted to start putting the stories  

in and added stories at the beginning  

and try to make it more personal along  

with the doctrinal because I otherwise  

would tend to be a little more doctrinal  

it seems to me like kind of something  

you've stumbled upon is I mean it in the  

Book of Mormon it doesn't really mention  

a lot of specific ordinances or things  

that we do in the temple probably for a  

good reason  

right well all of that came through  

revelation to Joseph Smith but the way  

you're putting it is that having  

translated the Book of Mormon set him up  

with like this base level of knowledge  

to better receive those revelations of  

the temple don't you think that's  

exactly right that's that's so true in  

fact I point out that when when Moroni  

visited Joseph Smith September 21st 1823  

he had four visits that night in the  

next morning he he recited the third and  

fourth chapters of Malachi which and  

with the famous prophecy of the coming  

of Elijah that we associate with temple  

work ad that four times when and and  

this is the first that Joseph Smith is  

hearing at all about this sacred record  

and along with telling about the sacred  

record he's telling about the coming of  

of Elijah in the and and quoting from  

Milligan and they are connected yet The  

Book of Mormon had to come forth because  

yeah  

lays out the foundational principles  

upon which the covenants of the temple  

would be established and the fascinating  

thing is finding this pattern in the  

sacred small plates of Nephi two hundred  

years after I didn't it's not found now  

but having it published two hundred  

years after the first vision a hundred  

and ninety years after the Book of  

Mormon is published Joseph Smith didn't  

point out that  

oh I cleverly stuck in the beginning  

here in the same order even these same  

principles that I also installed in the  

endowment is because it wasn't Joseph's  

work it's God's work and the reason I  

believe that it isn't coming out until  

now is it's part of the Lord's plan in  

the ongoing restoration as we prepare  

for the second coming of the Lord  

sometimes we see the restoration as one  

event and the second coming of Jesus  

Christ as a second event if you look at  

how Isaiah saw it as you read the Isaiah  

chapters a second Nephi he saw them as  

one period and from his perspective  

6,000 years earlier you can see that he  

would because it was so far off but also  

they are one period because there is no  

apostasy between Joseph Smith and the  

second coming of Jesus Christ when you  

see that the events of the restoration  

the 1,800 events of the restoration  

because the events are going on now but  

when you see that those early 1800  

events were preparing for the second  

coming of Jesus Christ  

the restoration becomes a  

christ-centered  

event not a Joseph Smith centered event  

the gospel is restored this last time to  

prepare for the earth to receive Jesus  

Christ and that is why the Gospels  

resort and as we get closer things are  

speeding up and more things are coming  

out and the temple is even more  

accessible not until we have temples  

across the globe do we get more  

revelation on what the temple is and how  

the temple relates to to the scriptures  

I I say early I tell a story early in in  

the first chapter my wife and I watched  

a movie once that had a scene of a in a  

Jewish synagogue and this this rabbi  

walks in from the back of the hall with  

the Torah and he's holding it up as he's  

walking through and there's people are  

reaching out from that from the balcony  

above and from the aisles and wanting to  

touch the Torah and there's all this  

drama and then he gets right up to the  

front of the hall of this synagogue he  

lifts his scriptures high above his head  

and then he lays them on an altar and I  

go oh I know the roots of that Jewish  

practice of raising the scriptures and  

laying them on the altar and there is a  

connection between the scriptures and  

the temple and we have not yet fully  

tapped in to that and I hope that this  

book that has come out I I hesitate to  

say my back but because it's not my book  

it's Lourdes  

witness of his book of the Book of  

Mormon this  

I hope this opens other people to search  

for temple connections through all of  

scriptures because it's there it's there  

the two the two are linked do you think  

that it is worthwhile for someone who's  

going through the temple for the first  

time to read this first or after why I  

don't know I you know I I've written the  

people who've been to the temple you  

know for 40 years like I have will well  

this will just add on to what  

understanding they already have but I  

think it so I had i beliee thought it  

was for mature temple goers but as I  

have shared this concept with so many  

others I'm shifting I have given a  

couple of fire sites in my stake on this  

and I had a sister say who was at one  

fireside that I now want to go back to  

the temple she found the temple very  

difficult to understand and she she's  

actually was closer to my age but she  

had only initially gone to the temple  

and had not been repeated and it was a  

two hour drive for us but after hearing  

my presentation she's like oh I think I  

think I see what it's about and she  

wanted to go back to the temple more and  

so now that shifted my thinking oh this  

might help this might remove some of the  

mystery of it and to teach if if we can  

focus on the covenants of the temple and  

then see how some of the other symbols  

might play into those I think we'll get  

more and I think those who are going for  

the first time might might actually gain  

a lot by reading this because this is  

from the scripture and then going to the  

temple they might say oh oh okay I see I  

see I see what they're trying to teach  

me here in the temple so initially I  

thought I was writing a book for the  

mature temple goer but I'm now seeing  

it's for everyone how can we use this  

this year in conjunction with the come  

follow me manuals  

well this applies especially for the  

early part of the Book of Mormon first  

Nephi through King Benjamin's sermon you  

will find so much in in those areas and  

I I only regret that we're already just  

starting in the second Nephi in come  

follow me but readers will enjoy  

backtracking a little bit into first  

Nephi but hop right into second Nephi  

today and read my chapter on that and  

you will gain I think some wonderful  

insights on how the gospel is taught so  

thoroughly in 2nd Nephi you'll see how  

the Isaiah chapters fit in in a way that  

anybody can understand you don't have to  

be a gospel stall scholar to to get to  

glean from the Isaiah chapters the  

points that I think the Lord's want  

wants us to get from the Isaiah chapters  

that they witness of Christ in that they  

witness of apostasy and revelation are  

restorations apostasy zand restorations  

and how those fit into the gospel when  

you get into the end of 2nd Nephi and  

you get into the doctrine of Christ  

you'll I think you'll love the insights  

there and just continuing through Jacob  

eNOS jerem Omni and King Benjamin's  

sermon I just increase  

readers to read the chapters from the  

Covenant path alongside those scriptures  

and I think you'll see great insights so  

you're not one of our Utah Mormons  

you're from a different state where did  

you fly into are you from yeah yeah yeah  

I got here yesterday from Michigan from  

Michigan yeah it's even colder and  

snowier they're like balmy weather for  

you right now and the ski ski slopes we  

have but the skiing isn't quite as good  

but but it's a whole lot cheaper nothing  

quite like the Rocky Mountains I'm from  

Southern California and so we had  

equivalent mountains there but pretty  

much anywhere else in the country you're  

not going to get the mountains like like  

we've got them here in Utah that's for  

sure are you married you what tell me  

about your family yes yes so I I was  

born in in Murray Utah cottonwood  

Maternity Hospital like 80% of the  

Mormons born in the 50s and 60s but in  

the early 60s my dad moved us to Indiana  

he had served as his mission in the  

Great Lakes states in Michigan and  

Illinois and he said he wanted to raise  

us in the mission field but Marius in  

the West so we lived out there 13 years  

and started getting the oldest ones  

marrying ages while they were on their  

missions we moved to to Idaho to  

Meridian Idaho so my my growing up years  

school years were in Indiana then Idaho  

went to BYU where I met and married my  

wife Lori ransom from Pocatello Idaho  

and we got married just just before we  

left to Michigan where I obtained  

employment and  

so our entire married life was there had  

a career there in the chemical industry  

and raised five children there and trips  

occasionally back to visit with family  

and and get kids to school and now have  

eight grandchildren as well and I was  

comfortable moving to the Midwest  

because I'd grown up in the Midwest and  

and we loved it there and we love being  

latter-day saints in a community that's  

not predominantly latter-day Saint where  

you have opportunities to share the  

gospel but yet we do have a good strong  

basis of strong members of the church  

and yet plenty of work to be done to  

build the kingdom and strengthen the  

church out there yeah it's it's  

different having had grown up outside of  

the state myself as well it is different  

being latter-day saint outside of Utah  

first of all there's more of an  

opportunity to choose for yourself how  

you want to live the gospel and and to  

what degree you want to follow the  

gospel because if you just want to fall  

away from the church there's really  

nobody to you know jump on you and bug  

you about it and yes you know nobody  

would would know otherwise really if you  

just moved away and yes and stopped  

going to church so the I feel like the  

Saints that do live outside of Utah have  

a dedication to the gospel I'm not  

saying that Utah Saints don't but I'm  

saying that definitely the ones outside  

of the state have a dedication to the  

gospel that transcends cultural  

influences of the church don't you think  

the gospel is so the church is so global  

and the gospel is the same gospel where  

wherever you are but they the culture is  

is a little different i live we're  

serving in a branch a little remote  

branch of our steak right now and you  

know somebody might show up coming  

straight from there they're hunting  

blind in camo and show up to church with  

their guns locked in their car and we  

welcome them with open arms and and yeah  

those some people that might look a  

little bit rough around the edges  

we we love them and we're glad to have  

and we'll put them right to work well we  

don't have some of the cultural biases  

that exist when everybody tries to toe  

the line in one direction here so so  

yeah they're it's a little unique and  

and and our kids grew up where you have  

some people that are very focused on  

their own view of Christianity and who  

didn't want anything to do with Mormons  

but many others that totally respected  

my children for what they were and who  

they were but they had to have their own  

testimonies amongst that that area where  

there is a lot of strong Bible believing  

people but a lot of anti Mormon  

I think that terms still allowed in time  

orman so they had to have their own  

their own testimonies as well so it was  

good there's a pros and cons everywhere  

don't we we loved it and it was it was  

the right thing for our family and and  

it's still the right thing for my wife  

and I to remain there yeah yeah I think  

I  

do like to pick on my born and raised  

Utah friends a little bit it's just a  

little bit but I do love Utah so much  

I've lived in Utah one year more than I  

lived in California now so I'm a Utah  

now and I love it here I love I love the  

culture but I like to point it out  

sometimes just for fun to people who  

were born here because sometimes they  

don't notice it you know how why would  

you if you were born and raised here you  

may not notice this culture surrounding  

you but I think it's cute I think Utah  

cultures just adorable  

so yes I wouldn't be raising my kids  

here if myself you know what I'll add to  

that there were there's this kind of  

same dialogue of you know those Utah  

Mormons and they're just not as strong  

as we out here in the mission field so  

to speak and and I I had to point out to  

people have you noticed that the  

strongest members of our Wharton State  

came from Utah those Utah Mormons out  

here in Michigan we're glad to have them  

so be careful what you say about those  

Utah Mormons so and I don't think that's  

true at all  

I think that I have met just as many  

faithful strong members here as I ever  

knew growing up in my hometown yes I  

think that everyone's going to make a  

choice and like I said the difference is  

is that if you live in California or  

Michigan and you decide to walk away  

from the church nobody notices but in  

Utah people notice because it's  

everywhere  

and I think that's the big difference  

but well we noticed there too  

well you know you notice but the people  

outside of the church don't know yeah  

that's right yeah that you can easily  

slip into a social group and be  

comfortable in a social group ready to  

receive you without any discussion of  

your previous history but we were in the  

church notice and are gonna send the  

ministering brothers and sisters down  

after you yeah yeah no promises that the  

missionaries won't find you okay I heard  

of that happening plenty of times that's  

right  

and people I had a friend who his  

parents were from Utah and he knew this  

he was aware of this but he lived in  

Southern California his whole life and  

then one day his parents just up and  

moved them all back to Utah up to Ogden  

and and then it was then that he found  

out that his parents used to be members  

of the church and he knew in California  

he knew me and my friends that were  

members of the church everybody knew who  

we were because we were kind of the  

weird ones who liked to be in show choir  

and didn't go to the parties and you  

know we stood out and so he started  

going to church when he moved back up to  

Utah and got baptized and then  

immediately called me and my friends  

back in California and said guess what  

so and he still look remember he served  

a mission and as far as I know I haven't  

talked to him for a couple years but as  

far as I know he still lives in Utah so  

well I believe that sometimes our  

ancestors are working on the other side  

of the veil for their progenitors so  

that if if somebody chooses to abandon  

their covenants and leave the church  

sometimes those deceased ancestors will  

find a receptive person down the line to  

pull in the family line back again and  

I'm experiencing that with a sister in  

my branch who whose parents had become  

inactive and she was not raised in the  

church but as a sister in her 60s  

she is just  

drinking from the fire hose just soaking  

up everything about the gospel and just  

loving it and serving diligently in our  

branch Relief Society presidency and  

it's it's um you know the hearts of the  

children are being drawn to their  

fathers and you just can't escape it  

because of the promises that those  

fathers made sometimes they'll skip over  

someone because a free agency who chosen  

chooses to to abandon those but they'll  

bring in their descendants and bring  

them back into line you are so right and  

I actually know a story specifically  

about that we have an author here and  

her name is Jane MO and she died on the  

operating table and had a near-death  

experience and she met her at the time  

boyfriend's father and he started  

teaching her gospel principles on the  

other side he never said anything about  

your daughters yes well and then in  

subsequent years she continued to have  

dreams of his side of the family I think  

what was happening was they wanted they  

wanted them to do their temple work but  

for many many years they didn't know  

anything about the Church of Jesus  

Christ of Latter day Saints but they  

were learning all these principles about  

it about eternal families and and she  

had even had some visions I believe  

about Joseph Smith about or maybe it was  

her husband somebody somebody did have a  

vision about Joseph Smith who saw  

passado submit anyway so her his family  

they eventually got married so they're a  

family now and they're still together  

but it's just an excellent example of  

what you were saying access you're  

working so hard on the other side to get  

us to find the gospel and find and find  

the truth so  

her book is called visions of heaven if  

anybody would like to read that one it's  

an amazing story I'll have to yes it's  

really great well maybe I'll get you a  

copy while you're here let's do that  

let's see if they can grab one from the  

back for you so valiant thank you so  

much for coming in and talking with me  

about your book I'm looking forward to  

reading it throughout the rest of the  

year and I usually have about 5 to 10  

book industry and you get so many come  

in yeah yeah I try to get people's books  

read before they come in for interviews  

and sometimes like yours I just can't  

get it because you're just so recently  

came out and I just wasn't prepared but  

it was it was it was hurried as fast as  

as cedar fort could do it yeah yeah well  

I mean the the timing is really great  

with the the come follow me being about  

the Book of Mormon what better to  

publish right now than a book about  

finding the temple in the Book of Mormon  

so excellent timing and you said that  

Deseret Book was interested in it but  

they wanted to they didn't have room for  

it until like a year and a half from  

them all right  

that's right so I had to make a choice  

and and cedar Forge  

yeah yeah I asked desert book and they  

said well uh unfortunately our schedules  

full for 2020 and most of 2021 and and I  

asked cedar for it and they said we  

think we can have it out in January or  

February and I'm like okay I'm in and I  

just think I'm just really pleased with  

the partnership that I formed with cedar  

fort with with your staff with the  

professional attention here and with the  

agility of a smaller publishing company  

that they're able to work so quickly  

because I just I just think now's the  

time for this and just from the time of  

elder Bednar SQUOZE until now ten months  

later  

that's really pretty quick to go through  

all of the reviews the  

editing's the printing and everything  

else and and get it out and so I'm I'm  

grateful to work with cedar for it and I  

hope we continue this partnership in the  

future because I have some other ideas  

for the future oh good  

yeah I mean this is great timing if you  

had to wait a year and a half we would  

probably be into I don't know the Old  

Testament maybe or whatever and it could  

have just gotten lost in the piles of  

books that people need to read that year  

but it's so relevant for what we're  

talking about this year in the church so  

I'm really glad that we were able to get  

it out as soon as possible and also you  

know a cedar fort you don't have to we  

don't answer to the church so we don't  

have to wait for things to be reviewed  

by is anything that does a red book go  

ahead anything that does red book you  

know publishes has to be reviewed and  

represents the church so they're very  

very careful well they are and and they  

asked you to send beforehand to their  

intellectual properties group for review  

the manuscript and and anticipating I  

might publish through them I actually  

did that so this went through most of  

those hoops as well and got their  

approval and and but they then have  

later hoops to go through as well which  

they're receiving editor told me there's  

still some other hoops to go through and  

and whereas cedar fort is more just  

going through the editorial staff who  

who have a lot of experience and a lot  

of wisdom and and know what's  

appropriate and what's right and so it  

worked it worked and we're glad it did  

so thank you so much for coming in and  

visiting with me too  

thank you it's been a pleasure