The Story behind, Page 2

(continued from page 1) …

Additionally, I thought the “latter-day saints” would delve into and revel in this ancient, yet modern symbol. The name alone seemed to beg attention! I expected it to be destined to become a modern-day icon and that the story I’d heard at the Fireside would spread through the LDS culture and perhaps even on into the rest of the Christian world.

However, beginning work at the end of 2004 as a sub-contractor in Iraq, my mind moved onto the work at hand. It wasn’t until I saw the symbol on a bridge in a picture from an LDS soldier of the city of Kirkuk, Iraq that I realized the symbol had great significance to non-Christian religions as well. The symbol was obviously prominent throughout eastern culture as it can be seen all over the Middle East. Almost every mosque tower was 8-sided in shape, o frequently in the same shape as the 8-point star known to me as the Seal of Melchizedek. Since then I have found it in many cultures, often used in their highest forms of worship.

When I returned from consecutive contracts in Iraq for a multi-year break in 2007, I myself was asked to give similar “Fireside” presentations on the Middle East. To my surprise, when I pointed out the use of the “Seal of Melchizedek” in Middle Eastern architecture to the LDS audiences, few if any recognized the term. Some of those who had been to the San Diego Temple did, however, recognized the symbol by appearance. Apparently the symbol and its story didn’t catch on as quickly as I had imagined it would!

At that point I embarked on an even deeper study of the symbol, and the reason behind its name and use. In my mind the fact that it appeared in a dream, the fact that it is used extensively in a Holy Temple (and has since been added to the Salt Lake City Temple), the fact that it bears the name Melchizedek, a name so closely associated with the power of God, even Christ himself – all continued to garner my deepest thoughts as to its significance.

Research indicated that the symbol indeed pointed to Christ in several different ways and had layers of meaning, and was associated with temples and temple altars, and therefore the atonement, as well as the ordinances of the gospel. Furthermore, the symbolism related to a new beginning, and more specifically; to be purified in Christ.

My future wife, also impressed with the origins of the symbol and its use in the temples, and knowing the harsh moral and physical environment I was heading back into, made a dog-tag for me with the symbol on it, as well as the words “Son of God.” It served to remind me of what I stood for and who I believed in.

Others began asking what the symbol was, and I knew it was time to do something about it.

Experiencing the symbols effect on myself and others for good, and the meanings wrapped up in it, I realized the potential power of this symbol to effect the lives of others for good. As a means to share research, pictures, and promote understanding of symbolism, particularly as it relates to the “so-called Seal of Melchizedek, was born. We hope you’ll feel free to browse around and enjoy discovering what you may find.

Ernest @ Seal of

A Note on Symbolism: Symbols can, of course, mean different things to different people at different times. That is part of their wonder and power. Some look at a symbol and see only an aesthetic design. Some briefly ponder but perhaps are too rushed or thinking of other things to discern what a symbol may mean. But symbols often carry messages from a loving God for those who will take time to dig and discern. Alonzo Gaskill, author of “The Lost Language of Symbolism” says:

“Symbolism is the language of scripture and ritual…Symbols are the language in which all gospel covenants and all gospel ordinances of salvation have been revealed.”

Alonzo Gaskill

“Symbolism is a marvelously instructive and expressive language….It partakes of the language of the heart and the language of the Spirit… As Alonzo Gaskill deftly points out… the language of symbolism embraces everything from the dust of the earth to the glories of the heavens. To miss what is being expressed or taught with symbols is like living in a world without sunsets or autumn leaves.”

Joseph Fielding McConkie





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