Recently at work I received an e-mail that contained sensitive information that was not appropriate for the network I was using. This created a “security incident”, and a disruption of my work while the offending e-mail was deleted, the hard drive was removed from my computer and destroyed, and the server was purged. Early on, I had a simple solution to clean up the mess that would have put me back to work very quickly. My boss reminded me that when dealing with the people that work in security, “logic does not apply”.

This is the same with the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the organization here in the United States that is tasked with keeping our airplanes safe from the bad guys. I wrote about them 4 years ago here, touching on the the show they put on doing screenings. Again, logic does not apply.

This got me to thinking about church, and the places that logic des not apply. We can all find illogical things our leaders do, and I think the Word of Wisdom as practiced is as illogical as you can get. But for today, the area where logic does not apply that I’d like to talk about is with the temples.

When we are talking about the temple, I think most members will assume this is an area were the Lord is very much involved via revelation, so that any changes are “revelation”, which makes it hard to question, or use logic.

One area that jumps out to me is the building of so many temple in areas with just a few members. This makes no logical sense if the purpose of the temple to to provide salvation to the dead. But if we assume it is revelation, then Isaiah 55:8 is the answer [1] . “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.”

So even though the Rome temple will probably only be open once or twice a week, logic does not apply, and the Lord knows what he is doing. Or maybe there are alterative motives not related to the salvation of the dead? Like maybe making a statement to the Catholics?

Another place in the temple where logic does not apply is the endowment ceremony for the dead. Outside of getting ones own endowment, if the purpose is to do the ordinances that our dead posterity cannot, then the ceremony could be shortened to just a few minutes. Take the baptism for the dead. When we do that ordinance, we only do the physical part that the dead cannot do for themselves. We don’t take hours of missionary lessons preparing us for the baptism. We just do the physical part. That is the part the dead person cannot do.

Applying logic, then for the endowment we should only do the physical part that the dead person cannot. We don’t need all the lessons, we only need to do the signs and tokens, and the veil ceremony. This could be done in about five minutes per person, if we drop all the learning that the dead person can do for themselves. But since this is revelation, it cannot be questioned, and logic does not apply. Or maybe this brings to the forefront the the real reason we go to the temple after our own endowment is not for the dead, but for the living. If the Lord is indeed omnipotent, He could just wave the hand shaking requirement, and be done with it. But what would keep the members in line? What would the Church use to measure the worthiness of its members if there was no temples, and no temple recommend interview, and absolutely no visible consequence for not paying tithing?

What other things in the church do you find illogical, or counter intuitive?

[1] See, I did stay awake in early morning seminary almost 50 years ago. This was a scripture mastery verse, and the only one I still remember by verse.

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