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The Kirtland Temple, located twenty five miles east of Cleveland, Ohio, on a hill west of the Chagrin River, is one of a series of detailed pencil drawings and paintings created by the artist Chad S. Hawkins. In 1989, at the age of seventeen, Chad started this unique temple series, becoming the original LDS artist to involve hidden spiritual images in his artwork.
Great spiritual blessings followed this period of sacrifice. The weeks preceding and following the Kirtland Temple dedication on March 27, 1836, witnessed remarkable spiritual manifestations to an unusual degree. One occurred on Sunday, April 3, to the prophet Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery. In fulfillment of Malachi's prophecy (Malachi 4:5-6), and Moroni’s promise (D&C 2), Elijah committed “the keys of this dispensation” in preparation for the “great and dreadful day of the Lord” (D&C 110). Through the sealing keys restored by Elijah, priesthood ordinances performed on earth can be “bound” or “sealed” in heaven; also, Latter-day Saints can perform saving priesthood ordinances in behalf of loved ones who died without the opportunity of accepting the gospel in person. In this way the hearts of the children are turning to their fathers.
To remind the viewer of this drawing of this transcendently important event and the importance of taking an active role in temple work, the artist has drawn a reenactment of Elijah’s visit to the prophet and Oliver Cowdery hidden in the trees to the left of the temple.