The Command to Build Temples
June 2009

“The Command to Build Temples,” Friend, June 2009, 44–45

From the Life of the Prophet Joseph Smith

The Command to Build Temples

Adapted from Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith (Melchizedek Priesthood and Relief Society course of study, 2007), 13–14, 413–16.

The Command to Build Temples, left page

Illustrations by Sal Velluto and Eugenio Mattozzi

In many of the places where Church members lived, the Lord commanded them to build a temple.


I know we don’t have much—many of you don’t even have homes—but the Lord has commanded us to build a temple.

Although they were not always able to build a temple because of persecution, the Saints did try.

Far West

Brothers and sisters, let us build a temple.


Our most important work is to build a temple.

The Command to Build Temples, right page

Joseph worked hard alongside the Latter-day Saints to build the Nauvoo Temple.

This will be a beautiful building when it’s finished.

Not just a building but the house of the Lord.

Joseph was killed before the temple was finished. But the Saints worked day and night to finish it. They wanted to receive in the temple the spiritual gifts that the Lord had promised them.

We must give all we can to finish this temple.

The Saints enjoyed the Nauvoo Temple for only a short time. The temple was destroyed, but not before many Saints received temple ordinances.

After the Latter-day Saints arrived in Utah, Brigham Young received revelations to build more temples.

St. George (dedicated April 6, 1877)

Logan (dedicated May 17, 1884)

Manti (dedicated May 2, 1888)

Salt Lake (dedicated April 6, 1893)