“I Am He Who Liveth, I Am He Who Was Slain; I Am Your Advocate with the Father”

Doctrine and Covenants 110:1–10

1 The veil was taken from our minds, and the eyes of our understanding were opened.
2 We saw the Lord standing upon the breastwork of the pulpit, before us; and under his feet was a paved work of pure gold, in color like amber.
3 His eyes were as a flame of fire; the hair of his head was white like the pure snow; his countenance shone above the brightness of the sun; and his voice was as the sound of the rushing of great waters, even the voice of Jehovah, saying:
4 I am the first and the last; I am he who liveth, I am he who was slain; I am your advocate with the Father.
5 Behold, your sins are forgiven you; you are clean before me; therefore, lift up your heads and rejoice.
6 Let the hearts of your brethren rejoice, and let the hearts of all my people rejoice, who have, with their might, built this house to my name.
7 For behold, I have accepted this house, and my name shall be here; and I will manifest myself to my people in mercy in this house.
8 Yea, I will appear unto my servants, and speak unto them with mine own voice, if my people will keep my commandments, and do not pollute this holy house.
9 Yea the hearts of thousands and tens of thousands shall greatly rejoice in consequence of the blessings which shall be poured out, and the endowment with which my servants have been endowed in this house.
10 And the fame of this house shall spread to foreign lands; and this is the beginning of the blessing which shall be poured out upon the heads of my people. Even so. Amen.

Elder Hyrum M. Smith and Janne M. Sjödahl wrote:

“. . . Glorious manifestations had indeed been given during the dedication services of this sanctuary [the Kirtland Temple]. This vision [in D&C 110:1–10] surpasses any of those previously granted, for our Lord Himself indeed came to His Temple, ‘suddenly,’ as predicted [Malachi 3:1].

“. . . ‘The veil was taken from our minds’ [D&C 110:1]. . . . The pulpit veil had been lowered, so that Joseph and Oliver were by themselves, but to their mind’s eye the veil was removed, and the eyes of their understanding were opened.

“. . . ‘We saw the Lord’ [D&C 110:2]. . . . He was standing upon the breastwork of the pulpit; that is, close to them. In [Exodus] 24:9–11, we are told that Moses, Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy Elders ‘saw the God of Israel,’ and there was under His feet ‘a paved work of sapphire stone, and as it were the body of heaven in clearness.’ They saw the divine Manifestation, not close by, but standing on a pavement which in color could be compared only to the clear, blue sky. In this revelation, the God of Israel, our Lord, was seen standing upon a pavement of pure gold, like amber in color and resting on the breastwork [see D&C 110:2].

“. . . ‘His eyes,’ etc. [D&C 110:3]. . . . They saw His features. The description resembles that of Daniel’s vision of the Ancient of Days (Adam), and also that of John’s vision of the Son of Man [see Daniel 7:9; Revelation 1:14].

‘Rushing of great waters’ [D&C 110:3]. . . . There is wonderful harmony in the apparently unending tune of a waterfall. Some one with an analytical ear claims to have found that the sound produced by a cataract is composed by the chord C, E, G, and a deep F. The Song of the Redeemed sounded to the Revelator ‘as the voice of many waters,’ accompanied by the voice of thunder and the music of harps. It was at once majestic, awe-inspiring, and sweet. . . .

“. . . ‘The First and the Last’ [D&C 110:4]. . . . Our Lord addresses His servants under a name by which He was well known to them [see Smith and Sjödahl, The Doctrine and Covenants Commentary, 90–91]. There was to be no mistake, as to His identity. It was not an angel, but our Lord Himself, who stood before them in the vision.

“. . . ‘Your sins are forgiven you’ [D&C 110:5]. . . . This joyful assurance, which alone can bring peace to a human heart, was again given to Joseph and Oliver [see D&C 29:3]. Our Savior lives, although He was slain on Calvary, and He is our advocate [see D&C 45:3] with the Father. Therefore He can forgive sins.

‘You are clean’ [D&C 110:5]. . . . He whose sins are forgiven is clean.

‘Therefore . . . rejoice’ [D&C 110:5]. . . . The wonderful manifestations they had witnessed were not comparable to the fact that their sins were forgiven. Jesus said to the Seventy: ‘In this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven’ (Luke 10:20).

“. . . ‘I have accepted this house’ [D&C 110:7]. . . . This verse and the following three paragraphs [D&C 110:7–10] contain a direct answer to the dedicatory prayer [see D&C 109]. But the condition is,—‘If my people will keep my commandments, and do not pollute this holy house’ [D&C 110:8]. When His people suffer His Sanctuary to be polluted, He is not greatly concerned if the hordes of Nebuchadnezzar carry away the consecrated vessels for Belshazzar to use in drunken orgies; or if the Roman soldiers level its walls with the ground and run the plow over it, so as to make sure that not one stone is left undisturbed.”

(The Doctrine and Covenants Commentary, rev. ed. [1951], 724, 725.)