The Temple of Truth is a device used by our evangelistic group in Portland to present the Advent message more convincingly. The public's response was so favorable that we thought our fellow workers might desire to share it with us, adapting it to suit the personal approach. The Temple of Truth is designed to depict four truths: first, the doctrines of the apostolic church; second, how these truths were virtually all corrupted after the first century; third, how and by whom the gospel truths were restored in Reformation times and later; and fourth, the church today that follows and teaches these restored truths as they were in the first church.
Figure 1 shows the temple as it depicts the first church of the apostles. In this temple the main portion is our basic display board, 6 feet high and to feet wide, made up of four sections, each 3 by 5 feet. These sections are a light wood frame covered with beaverboard, and this board is covered with black wool cloth. The sections are bolted together.
Incidentally, this basic display board is so versatile that it can be used at almost every lecture. For small displays one section may be used on a tripod as a felt board. For a long, narrow display (2300 days, millennium, etc.) the four sections are bolted end to end, making a felt board 20 feet long by 3 feet wide. For the Armageddon map we place the sections vertically, so feet high by 6 feet wide. Future subjects are sometimes advertised on the felt board with 12-inch letters. Two heavy tripods raise the board about three feet off the floor to make it more prominent.
The Greek type of temple roof is added in two sections (wood frame and beaverboard, painted white) . This, with variations, could also be used to illustrate other subjects. The steps of beaverboard are painted white, with simulated steps in black outline.
In presenting the Temple of Truth theme, we reviewed briefly the woman of Revelation 12 (previously taught in a sermon). Then the curtain parted revealing the temple as shown in figure 1. We alluded to each point of doctrine printed on each brick or pillar—the Sabbath, baptism, and so forth. These various truths were familiar to the audience through previous studies. Next the leopard beast of Revelation 13 came on the stage, and we discussed the coming of the great apostasy. Then the assistant evangelist took his place beside the temple, as we described how this power embarked on her millennium-long crusade against truth. As each pure Christian doctrine was corrupted, the brick or pillar representing it was pried out of the wall (each brick had two punched holes and hung on brads), and a false brick (lettered in bright red on buff background) placed in its stead. The pillars were the first to be substituted, then the foundation.
When all the bricks of error had been substituted, the temple appeared as figure 2, and was now labeled "Truth Corrupted." Next, the coming of the Reformation was briefly sketched, noting its purpose—to restore the bricks of truth removed by antichrist so long before. We emphasized especially which church or reformer made the various restorations ; and as we spoke the false bricks were removed one by one, and the true ones restored. At this time the assistant evangelist placed a small placard on each brick or pillar with the name of the church that made the restoration. (Righteousness by faith, Lutheran; true baptism, Baptists;Sabbath, Seventh Day Baptists; etc.)
As we came to the close of the restoration, finally restoring the true sanctuary by the Seventh-day Adventists, the temple resembled figure 3, with the addition of the denominational names on each brick. "Truth Restored" took the place of "Truth Corrupted." Then came our climactic question: "Is there in Christendom today any church that follows and teaches these restored truths in their entirety as they were in the days of the apostles?"
In closing we offered to all a small mimeographed replica of the three stages of the temple and a printed copy of the subject to all who would sign a card. The usherettes quickly passed out the cards as we made the appeal, asking all who believed they had found the truth and who wanted to follow it to place a cross after their names, before the cards were collected. Many testified that the truth had been unforgettably impressed on their minds, and we had a completely fresh list of almost every interested person in the audience.