When the children of Israel constructed the tabernacle in the wilderness, they built it according to a pattern which the Lord revealed to Moses. “Look that thou make them after their pattern,” the Lord said, “which was shewed thee in the mount” (Exodus 25:9, 40).

The objects in the tabernacle, such as the candlestick, were also made “according to the pattern which the Lord had shewed Moses” (Numbers 8:4).

And when Solomon later built the temple as a permanent tabernacle in Jerusalem, his father David gave him the pattern he should follow, saying, “All this…the Lord made me understand in writing by his hand upon me, even all the works of this pattern” (1 Chronicles 28:11-12, 18-19).

In 1833, as the Lord instructed church members how to build a temple and other important structures, He emphasized that He would provide a pattern for these buildings. “It must be done according to the pattern which I have given unto you,” He said (Doctrine and Covenants 94:2). And in another revelation the same day, He said, “It is my will that a house should be built unto me in the land of Zion, like unto the pattern which I have given unto you” (Doctrine and Covenants 97:10).

Although the word “pattern” does not appear in the Book of Mormon, the same principle appears. For example, when Nephi led his family in constructing a ship, he did not build it “after the manner of men” but “after the manner which the Lord had shown unto [him]” (1 Nephi 18:2).

And when his people built a city, they “did construct it after the manner of the temple of Solomon” (2 Nephi 5:16).

Elder Marvin J. Ashton explained:

A pattern is a guide for copying, a design, a plan, a diagram or model to be followed in making things….

Keeping one’s mind occupied with constructive, useful things on a constant basis prevents Satan from having success in idle minds. Good music, art, literature, recreation, and other worthy pastimes can help establish proper patterns in one’s mind and conduct. Happiness is a by-product of righteous living and sharing within the framework of lofty patterns.

A Pattern in All Things,” General Conference, October 1990

Today, I will follow inspired patterns. I will strive to develop productive habits and to make decisions in accordance with revealed truths. Just as Moses, Solomon, Nephi, and church members in Kirtland, Ohio followed revealed patterns in constructing a house of God, I will strive to build my life according to patterns defined by God.

4 thoughts on “Patterns

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  1. mighta been better if the people in Kirtland followed Solomons temple construction rather than the kinda temples constructed today


    1. I love the design of Solomon’s temple! It was such an appropriate space for the activities performed in it, and it was filled with symbolism which turned the minds of the people toward God. Thank you for sharing your interest in that divine pattern.


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