Defining Fullness of the Priesthood

FacsimileThreeIn response to a comment made by a reader on the previous post, I wrote, “The fullness of the priesthood, or that which was lost (D&C 124:28), is to be brought into the presence of the Father, by the Son, to be fully endowed with the power that Enoch received, the power to bring about Zion.” I would like to elaborate on that comment and provide some backup for my thinking.

Priesthood Power Not Same as Church Authority

Just as power in the priesthood is different from authority in the priesthood, offices in the Church do not constitute the priesthood itself. They are simply organizational offices in an institution. I know this can be a difficult concept to accept. Some may claim it is false doctrine. Perhaps we can consider together this quote from Joseph Smith on the subject. It may prove helpful:

All Prophets Were Ordained By God Himself

“All priesthood is Melchizedek, but there are different portions or degrees of it. That portion that brought Moses to speak with God face-to-face was taken away, but that which brought the ministry of angels remained. All prophets have the Melchizedek priesthood and were ordained by God himself.” (TPJS 180-181) Think about that last sentence from Joseph for a moment.

There is But One Priesthood of God

So Joseph teaches there is but one priesthood, yet we have a revelation (D&C 107:1) claiming there are two priesthoods, namely the Melchizedek and the Aaronic or Levitical. Add to this the idea of the Patriarchal priesthood, not defined in scripture, a phrase used by Joseph when urging the Saints to complete the Nauvoo temple. President Packer taught us a little more about this:

The Patriarchal Order of the Priesthood

“There are references to a patriarchal priesthood. The patriarchal order is not a third, separate priesthood. Whatever relates to the patriarchal order is embraced in the Melchizedek Priesthood. All other authorities or offices in the church are appendages to [the Melchizedek] priesthood. The patriarchal order is a part of the Melchizedek Priesthood which enables endowed and worthy men to preside over their posterity in time and eternity.”

Priesthood Power Received From the Father

So there is but one priesthood which exists, but it is not contained within or conferred by the church. It comes from one source – the Father. The Son is involved because He is the gatekeeper. He alone decides if a person if going to qualify to receive priesthood power. The Son makes it his work, or His ministry, to bring a person before the Father. This process can take many years.

The Son Prepares Us to Meet With the Father

The Son will work with a candidate for as long as it takes, and as long as the individual is willing to accept correction and reproof, from the Savior, to cure all that is wrong, fix all that is broken, remove all that is impure and prepare the disciple to be brought into the presence of the Father. It is the Father who confers and ordains a man to the highest priesthood. This is not a new teaching.

Priesthood Power Cannot be Conferred

Priesthood in the beginning was called the Holy Order. Later it was called the Holy Order after the Son of God, or the Holy Order after the Order of Enoch, or the Holy Order after the Order of Melchizedek. We think that is what we have in the church today. We think that is what we give to Elders when we first ordain them. But Joseph Smith could not confer that on another person.

Offices in the Church are not Priesthood

Priesthood power is received only from God. We cannot confer power upon another. We can ordain them with authority to officiate in offices in the church, but we cannot give them power. The fullness of the priesthood is contained within the Holy Order that comes from the Father. Show me a man who has entered into the Father’s presence and I will testify he has a fullness.

Our Goal Should Be To Receive The Father

But show me a man, no matter what position or keys he claims to possess, who has not entered into the Father’s presence, and I will testify he has not yet received a fullness. No matter what keys he has, he cannot possess the fullness. For that, the Father has a role He alone is required to fulfill. Joseph taught no man has seen the Father but He [the Father] has born record of the Son.

Ordination is Only a Preliminary Step

Being ordained is only the first step. Although it allows you to administer in an office in the church, it is really but an invitation, and nothing more than to go and get real power from God. It requires us to be faithful unto the Lord, to do all He asks us to do, and He will ask things of His sons that are difficult, in order to prove them faithful and worthy of being brought to the Father.

Receive the Lord’s Messengers Sent to Us

D&C 84 teaches us the importance of receiving the Lord’s servants, or messengers. They may be angels He sends to teach us, or they may be mortal. If we receive His messengers, we receive the Savior. The time will come when the Savior Himself will come to deliver instructions to prepare us further to come into the presence of the Father, in a very literal way, while we are yet mortal.

Fullness Means Completion of a Process

The whole purpose of the priesthood, as far as the man who receives it is concerned, is to prepare him to come into the presence of the Father in order to receive the fullness or the completion of the ordination. That is one definition of the word full – to be complete – or to have accomplished something. The accomplishment cannot be brought about without the involvement of the Lord.

We Must Receive The Father In This Life

“He that receiveth me receiveth my Father.” I can’t tell you how many times I have read that phrase with my brethren in priesthood meetings and wondered when this is supposed to happen. Surely the Lord intended for us to receive Him in this life, to be ministered to by Him in a literal and physical way. We receive the Father in this life to bear His presence in the world of glory.

Fullness of Priesthood and The Powers of Heaven

Receiving the fullness of the priesthood allows us to associate with those on the other side of the veil – the powers of heaven – who are helping to bring about the Lord’s work of bringing Zion. The fullness of the priesthood is required to withstand the brightness of the coming of the Lord, when He returns with the City of Enoch. Otherwise, they that come with Him will burn us up.

Seek to See the Face of God and Live

We have an association or brotherhood here on the earth which we call the priesthood. There is another brotherhood or association we should seek after, the association with the powers of heaven. D&C 84:21–22 teaches us the importance of priesthood in order to see the face of God and live. Obviously Joseph must have had priesthood when he saw the Father at age fourteen.

Attribution for Some of These Quotes

I recognize I have covered a lot in this post. It is all based on scripture, although I have not always provided the reference. You may also recognize a few direct quotes from some of the writings of Denver Snuffer. That’s because he organized ideas about priesthood in a way that make great sense to me. Otherwise, I would not have taken the trouble to study his writings.

Invitation to Receive of the Fullness

I finish as I started with an invitation to understand the fullness of the priesthood. It is simply to be brought into the presence of the Father, by the Son, to be fully endowed with God’s power, which can then be used to bless our fellow beings and to build the kingdom of God on the earth preparatory to the return of the Lord Jesus Christ and those who come with Him in great glory.

 

68 comments for “Defining Fullness of the Priesthood

  1. sfort
    May 31, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    Tim,

    This post had focus. It displayed a positive doctrinal piece. Good work. I see a lot of Denver flowing through it, which is only referenced through the scriptures but taught much by him. I remember in “Visions of Glory”, Spencer said we had to learn to use the fullness of the Priesthood. He saw the Savior and He spoke to him, but the fulness of the Priesthood came slower to him. Of course that was his interpretation only he can relate based on “his” vision. Thank you for giving us what we must inculcate.

  2. May 31, 2014 at 3:51 pm

    “He that receiveth me receiveth my Father.” [In this context, what he’s talking about is the same thing that you find in the 14th chapter of the book of John, in which Christ says that He will not leave you comfortless, but He will come to comfort you. And then He and his Father will“make our abode with [you].” (John 14: 23.) This is not an abstraction. The idea that this is something that happens in your heart, you can read in the Doctrine and Covenants, is an old sectarian notion and is false. (D&C 130: 3.) It means a literal appearance of these holy beings to minister, to comfort, and ultimately to take up their abode. (DS Orem talk p 5)

    I believe the fullness of the priesthood is in connection with the Patriarchal priesthood. In agreement with the temple portrayal, the telestial being on the level with the Aaronic orders, the terrestrial on level with the Melchizedek, I believe the Patriarchal order to be that of the celestial order. This makes complete sense to me, perhaps by nature of being a woman, because of my study of the powers a woman has rights to. She will be a priestess, a queen. So there must be another order in which these functions may be performed. The church is a temporary institution, the family is eternal.

    I think perhaps women ‘see’ the priesthood differently. Maybe because I lack all the priesthood training over the years? I was elated that DS mentioned in his priesthood (Orem) talk that he held the Patriarchal priesthood to be that of the highest order. I think somewhere in here is also the blessings of the “second annointing”.

    • May 31, 2014 at 3:54 pm

      I meant this as a continuation of the above DS quote:

      “Therefore, all those who receive the priesthood, [notice now the reference is in the singular, implying it speaks now about the singular, fullest manifestation which comes from the Father] “receive this oath and covenant of my Father…” [This is not talking about abstractions, quorums, groups, churches and organizations, orders, and choruses among men on this side of the veil. This is talking about a direct covenantal relationship established by the Father with this, meaning the fullness obtained directly from the Father, which comprises “ this priesthood.”

  3. May 31, 2014 at 7:38 pm

    I am also interested in the power and authority which the Holy Ghost bestows, and how this relates to the priesthood.

    17 And it came to pass after I, Nephi, having heard all the words of my father, concerning the things which he saw in a vision, and also the things which he spake by the power of the Holy Ghost, which power he received by faith on the Son of God—and the Son of God was the Messiah who should come—I, Nephi, was desirous also that I might see, and hear, and know of these things, by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is the gift of God unto all those who diligently seek him, as well in times of old as in the time that he should manifest himself unto the children of men.

    22 And the Holy Ghost giveth authority that I should speak these things, and deny them not.

    1 Nephi 10

  4. May 31, 2014 at 8:31 pm

    All this can be summed up in just a few words: First and Second Comforter.

    Our first task is to acquire the first comforter: the gift of the Holy Ghost as Enos did. He obtained a remission of his sins.

    I think it makes sense to focus our attention on first things first, then go from there.

    My two cents.

  5. EKB
    May 31, 2014 at 9:10 pm

    Can you explain more about how the phrase “powers of heaven” refers to heavenly beings rather than simply a power. Is this inferred or is there a reference to this somewhere? By inferred, meaning that power is only found in a being and not independent of a being. Just trying to understand this more. Nice post BTW.

    • May 31, 2014 at 9:27 pm

      From Denver’s Orem Talk on the Priesthood, pages 10-11:

      There is within the structure of the afterlife, different rungs on Jacob’s ladder, and they leak through in our scriptures, though Joseph never bothers parsing them. And whether you are talking about an angel, or an archangel, or a principality, or a power, or a dominion, or a throne, or a cherubim, or a Seraphim, it doesn’t matter which one you are referring to, it is appropriate, just like it is appropriate to refer to all those offices as Elder, to refer to any and all of them as “powers.”

      I want to be clear about this. … This is talking about developmental stages of growth. Each is moving toward perfection. To be higher in your progression is to be more near to and therefore more like God. We err when we think of this as a dominion in which ranking gives any right to abuse those who are lower in station or degree. The only continuing tools used throughout this progression are persuasion, love, meekness and pure knowledge.

      This is why so few who are in a position of being “called” in this life are ever “chosen” in the next. (D&C 121: 34.) They simply do not learn how these rights are inseparably connected with the same Spirit as our Lord and His Father. They never obtain the “mind of God” or Holy Spirit, or associate themselves with the third member of the Godhead.

      The Powers of Heaven: Whatever rung these ministers may be upon, they are all “Powers.” So I want to suggest to you, that the real definition of priesthood is an association between, mankind on the one hand, and those on the other side of the veil on the other hand. It is a brotherhood.

      Oh my, and it is potentially also, a sisterhood. And it is a fellowship, and it is a ministry if you will, in which there is connected together, and the real definition of priesthood is a connection between, a fellowship between, the “Powers of Heaven” on the one hand, and you on the other.

      • May 31, 2014 at 11:47 pm

        According to a couple online resources for the Greek New Testament, it looks like it is possible for “thrones, dominions, principalities, powers” in Colossians 1:16 to be referring to beings, and not simply inanimate objects or geographic areas.

        >> “This is talking about developmental stages of growth. Each is moving toward perfection. To be higher in your progression is to be more near to and therefore more like God.”

        Once you get the Spirit, you have all knowledge and power (as has been quoted from Moses 6:61 and D&C 50:27 in another post).

        “They who obtain a glorious resurrection from the dead, are exalted far above principalities, powers, thrones, dominions and angels, and are expressly declared to be heirs of God and joint heirs with Jesus Christ, all having eternal power” (TPJS, 374).

        So I assume these “developmental stages of growth” are referring to those in the 1st and/or 2nd degrees of celestial glory?

  6. May 31, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    Good job, Tim. This is very clear and concise. I really like it!

  7. Good Will
    June 1, 2014 at 12:51 am

    You’ve done a wonderful service here, brother. Thank you.

  8. lynnkarinne@hotmail.com
    June 1, 2014 at 7:28 am

    Amen Brother Tim. Amen

  9. Ruth
    June 1, 2014 at 10:14 am

    Hi, much of what you write I can agree with. However, the following statement I must take exception to: “Obviously Joseph must have had priesthood when he saw the Father at age fourteen”.
    Inspite of your presumption based on D&C, I do not believe that Joseph “had the Priesthood” when he first saw the Father and the Son at 14. He had only been studying the scriptures since he was a child and at 14 finally had the quote from John impress him to find out. I am sure the Spirit encouraged him in this, as the Spirit can prompt or impress anyone at any time, LDS, or other, or no religion.
    There is nothing in any of the writings from Joseph or others that we have to indicate this was not the first time Joseph saw them. The appearance of the Father and Son was a gift given him to get him started on the path he was to take. He then later received the official Priesthood, both authority and power, by the laying on of hands and association with the Lord and HF. While I do not deny that the Lord and HF can do what they want, when they want, there is nothing, anywhere, to indicate Joseph had the Priesthood at 14. To me this is akin to Pratt’s and Crowley’s claims that Joseph would never err. Wrong.
    While I was being converted, not yet a member, I received many visitors from the other side, angels, even visits from translated beings, and powerful dreams and visions to assist in my conversion and understanding. These were gifts to assist me as I learned and grew in my understanding. There came a time when I was told by the Spirit I had to be baptized in the LDS faith to receive the further instruction, light, and knowledge the Lord wanted me to have. I firmly believe that Joseph’s first vision was of similar ilk. It was a gift to give him the courage to go through what he would have to endure prior to receiving the fullness.
    Please remember that our ways are not the Lords ways, and our understandings are not always the Lords understandings.
    The Priesthood is indeed a great power that many (if not most) do not understand, appreciate, or use to its fullness. I look forward to the day when many (men and women) will wake up to what is available through the Priesthood. I can promise it is greater than we imagine.
    Ruth

    • June 1, 2014 at 11:25 am

      The Prophet Joseph Smith –

      Every man who has a calling to minister to the inhabitants of the world was ordained to that very purpose in the Grand Council of heaven before this world was. I suppose I was ordained to this very office in that Grand Council. (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, p. 365)

      Elder David A. Bednar –

      Every man who holds the priesthood was foreordained to that very responsibility in the premortal existence. (“Teach them to Understand,” Ricks College Education Week, June 4, 1998)

      See also: Alma 13:3, D&C 138:55–56, Abraham 3:22–23

      • Yet Another John
        June 1, 2014 at 7:10 pm

        I don’t think ‘ordain’ or ‘foreordain’ mean what you think it means in this context. I am of the understanding in this case it reads “appointed.”

      • June 3, 2014 at 7:20 am

        To add one more way of viewing the idea of Joseph having priesthood at the time of the First Vision, I offer this quote:

        Joseph Smith beheld the Father and Son in a vision while yet in his youth (JS-H 1: 17–20). He saw the Father. Therefore Joseph had at that very moment, while still a youth, possession of the highest order of priesthood (D&C 84: 21–22). Despite this, Joseph would be later ordained by John the Baptist to Aaronic Priesthood (JS-H 1: 68–70). The Aaronic Priesthood has the keys of ministering angels (D&C 84: 26). Yet before receiving this form of priesthood, Joseph had an angel minister to him (JS-H 1: 30–41). So before Joseph received “keys” from John the Baptist he was exercising the keys belonging to the priesthood he would receive.

        I could go on but these illustrate the point. Events involving God do not necessarily follow the same time-line as we would expect them to follow. When, however, Joseph received angels, you can know for certain he held priesthood. When he was visited by the Son, you can know he held priesthood and keys for that. When he was visited by the Father, Joseph Smith had priesthood. It was necessarily present and was in him. Don’t ever doubt that. Even if you don’t quite understand it at present, it is nevertheless true. So also you can receive things from God which are apparently out of sequence with the time-line we live in here.

        Source: http://denversnuffer.blogspot.com/2012/01/follow-up-question.html

      • Darin
        June 5, 2014 at 9:33 pm

        You quote Snuffer as though he was Joseph Smith or the prophet, be carefull. You can see why Snuffer got in trouble. People begin quoting him like he was in charge and was The Prophet. This is not good. You have some good ideas, but I implore you to follow the twelve and the FP, as they will lead you in the ways of salvation. Be carefull in not going beyond the bounds the Lord has set. So if all this does not happen to us in this life are we just damned? Should I live my life in depression because these things have not happened to me or even some of the most righteous people I know? I am not a new comer to all this, meaning I have studied and thought and prayed on these things for years. I am not saying you are totally wrong, but straying a little can take you far off the path. There is great wisdom in staying with the main part of the church and its apointed and known leaders. Best wishs to you.

      • June 6, 2014 at 6:25 pm

        Darin: I liked your questions. I wrote a response in the next post:

        http://latterdaycommentary.com/2014/06/06/defining-bounds-the-lord-has-set/

    • Mike
      June 1, 2014 at 12:05 pm

      Alma 13 addresses this, establishing that there are those whose priesthood hails from before their emergence into this world. Also see Jeremiah 1:5 and D&C 84:28 for examples of two more prophets in whose lives God moved and bestowed great power at early ages or before birth. Also in D&C 84 are verses 19-22, requiring Joseph have the “greater” priesthood before or at least upon receiving the First Vision, or he would not have survived it. These are just a few scriptures that address your comment. Indeed, God’s ways are higher and thus different than ours.

      • Ruth
        June 1, 2014 at 1:06 pm

        Thanks. My understanding of these verses has been enlarged. I had forgotten that many had been ordained before the world was and some others early in their lives. Good reminder. Need to get back to my studies of the scriptures! :)

  10. June 1, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    I have enjoyed reading much of what has been shared. From a very early stage in life the Holy Ghost told me there was much more to the idea of what “salvation” meant. I knew from the first time I went through the temple I didn’t understand the same as some time later in years.

    Later in years I came to understand that there was much more to understand about the promises found in the temple. So I started on my personal Ask – Seek – and Knock as it related to the “Church of the Firstborn” and being a member of it. As I sought more understanding of what the scriptures would mean it would come to me from sincere prayer to the Lord to help me understand His will in my life and to secure the greatest blessing(s) available to me, and therefore to my family. It comes as a natural flow of the spirit to want more for my family as I understand the gospel better.

    The “Fullness of the Priesthood” is to have all things in subjection to one who has been blessed with the “Powers of Heaven”. For those on the other side of our “vale of tears” who are undertaking the work of the Father; they function under the Power of the Father, which is the Holy Priesthood after the Order of the Son of God. They only do the will of the Father, just as the Son has done only the will of the Father. When one is thus blessed he has demonstrated to the Lord, and to the Father, that they will only do the will of the Father.

    On a side note, earlier in the responses you agreed with a writer that the Prophet Joseph Smith violated, or was following a lower order, when he threw out the printing press of the expositor. I disagree in a very humble manner and prove my point in how the Savior of the World entered His Fathers House (the Temple at Jerusalem) and destroyed the money changers and those who had violated holy principles. What Joseph Smith did was no different than what the Savior did and is no different then what the “ordinance” of “shaking the dust off our feet” in response to some that adhere to Lucifer’s voice in how they act each day. I have to believe that one who does that “act of vengeance” is acting under the influence of the Holy Ghost and acting thus can not be found in violation of God’s law, in fact they are doing God’s will in the act.

    That is what is meant in D&C 50: 29–30…we have progressed to the point of a covenant relationship with the Lord and Father in Heaven that we will only do the will of “them who sent us”; as is the case with every being in Heaven who performs any assignment from the Lord. Therein we seek not our own but only the will of Him who sent us. So if the Holy Spirit instructs me to do something I am both justified and sanctified by the Spirit in doing so. “Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven” should give us all a different perspective in that we understand what the “Fullness of the Priesthood” is.

    Thanks for the blog and even the comments. For even those who are in error bring salvation to those who are exercised by thus. Remember what the Apostle Peter says in 2 Peter 1: 19–21, for no scripture is for any private interpretation, what is good for one is good for all, if they would receive the “most Good News”. For the good news is coming to the Lord Jesus Christ and allow Him to bring us unto the Father.

    I take separation from any who judge another for any action they have taken. The Lord did not bring me to judge my brother, He brought me to help my brother (or Sister) at all times, even if he is at odds with my understanding. I can fully leave it to the Lord to decide who has violated their priesthood covenants. But I forebear caution when one finds fault with the Lord’s chosen vessels. There is no need for it in the kingdom as we all strive to come back to the presence of our Heavenly Father. Each has a task to perform and to judge another would require me to walk in his/her footsteps. That is why the Lord will judge righteously as He has walked in all of our footsteps through the Atonement….for which I am Eternally Grateful!

    • June 1, 2014 at 4:33 pm

      The “Son has done only the will of the Father.” I think that this principle has some layers to it with a sprinkling of divine capriciousness.

      * * *

      Matthew 15:22 – 28

      22 And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou Son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil.

      23 But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us.

      24 But he answered and said, I am not sent (by my Father) but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.

      25 Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.

      26 But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs.

      27 And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.

      28 Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.

      * * *

      On the one hand, Jesus declared:

      For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.

      John 6:38

      Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

      John 5:19

      So Jesus was perfectly obedient to his Father.

      * * *

      But on the other hand, the Lord taught Joseph Smith . . .

      26 For behold, it is not meet that I should command in all things; for he that is compelled in all things, the same is a slothful and not a wise servant; wherefore he receiveth no reward.

      27 Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness;

      Doctrine & Covenants 58

      * * *

      So I think Jesus went “off script” by blessing the woman of Canaan and her daughter. I believe he did this to be a good example for us in terms of D&C 58:26–27.

      I realize that this outcome may have been the Father’s intention all along.

      But I also think that the dilemma that Adam and Eve faced in the Garden of Eden regarding abstaining from the forbidden fruit versus partaking that “man might be” is a recurring model that is under-appreciated in the LDS Church, the Temple presentation notwithstanding. i.e. Sometimes we must disobey a lower law (or policy) in order to keep a higher law.

    • Log
      June 1, 2014 at 4:44 pm

      But I forebear caution when one finds fault with the Lord’s chosen vessels.

      Doctrine and Covenants 112:11
      11 I know thy heart, and have heard thy prayers concerning thy brethren. Be not partial towards them in love above many others, but let thy love be for them as for thyself; and let thy love abound unto all men, and unto all who love my name.

      James 2
      1 My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons.

      2 For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment;

      3 And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool:

      4 Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become judges of evil thoughts?

      5 Hearken, my beloved brethren, Hath not God chosen the poor of this world rich in faith, and heirs of the kingdom which he hath promised to them that love him?

      6 But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats?

      7 Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called?

      8 If ye fulfil the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well:

      9 But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.

      10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

      Mosiah 23:7
      7 But he said unto them: Behold, it is not expedient that we should have a king; for thus saith the Lord: Ye shall not esteem one flesh above another, or one man shall not think himself above another; therefore I say unto you it is not expedient that ye should have a king.

      Romans 14
      10 But why dost thou judge thy brother? or why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.

      11 For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.

      12 So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.

      13 Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way.

      A just man will be not partial.

      • Log
        June 1, 2014 at 4:51 pm

        James 3:17
        17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.

        1 Timothy 5:21
        21 I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another, doing nothing by partiality.

        For myself, I will defend the Brethren against unjust accusations, and I will defend Snuffer likewise, and I will defend any upon the same principle, for I hate injustice, which is inequality, which is inequity, which is iniquity.

  11. marginalizedmormon
    June 2, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    a message to Good Will above under his comment–

    Thank you.

    I don’t have any ideas about any of this right now. I’m afraid when it comes to the priesthood I am ‘blank’.

    I think it hinges upon righteousness, though.

  12. marginalizedmormon
    June 2, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    oh, and there are quite a few varied definitions of righteousness; that is a problem.

  13. June 3, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    For those who claim that some held the priesthood before their ordination here on this earth I wonder under what doctrine that could be found? And how would that doctrine explain Saul’s (Paul’s) experience in Acts 9: 3–6. He had assented unto Stephen’s death as well as many others in the church at the time of his conversion. And he saw the Lord.

    I believe sometimes we make things too complicated. Why was it that the Prophets brother Alvin was found in the Celestial Kingdom (D&C 137) before his work was done. Is it that the Lord can see all things before Him at all times (and The Holy Heavenly Father) and can thus allow the work to move forward as if it were already accomplished.

    It is the same principle when every repentant person experienced the purifying effects of the Atonement many hundreds of years before our Savior’s advent here in mortality. Because of the foreknowledge of God He can act in the past, present, and future because it is all before Him continuously, thereby acting in present tense at all times…for He is God and must follow His own truths.

    I realize that we must strive to understand the mysteries, and I believe that The Father is working His work in these latter days, but we must be careful to not look beyond the mark.

    • June 3, 2014 at 10:56 pm

      D&C 84:19–22

      And this greater priesthood administereth the gospel and holdeth the key of the mysteries of the kingdom, even the key of the knowledge of God. 20 Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifest. 21 And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh; 22 For without this no man can see the face of God, even the Father, and live.

      Alma 13:3, 5–7

      3 And this is the manner after which they were ordained—being called and prepared from the foundation of the world according to the foreknowledge of God, on account of their exceeding faith and good works; in the first place being left to choose good or evil; therefore they having chosen good, and exercising exceedingly great faith, are called with a holy calling, yea, with that holy calling which was prepared with, and according to, a preparatory redemption for such.

      5 Or in fine, in the first place they were on the same standing with their brethren; thus this holy calling being prepared from the foundation of the world for such as would not harden their hearts, being in and through the atonement of the Only Begotten Son, who was prepared—

      6 And thus being called by this holy calling, and ordained unto the high priesthood of the holy order of God, to teach his commandments unto the children of men, that they also might enter into his rest—

      7 This high priesthood being after the order of his Son, which order was from the foundation of the world; or in other words, being without beginning of days or end of years, being prepared from eternity to all eternity, according to his foreknowledge of all things—

      Note: The following discussion if from Denver’s blog – source cited below:

      So here priesthood has its beginning before this world even was organized. There is a necessary link between those hallowed days and power here. No person has authority here unless it was first obtained there.

      How was it obtained first – before the foundation of the world?

      It was because of the foreknowledge of God. And what was God’s foreknowledge based upon? Their “exceeding faith and good works!”

      How can a person have “faith” when they stand in the presence of God? Do they now have knowledge? This was before the mortal estate, right? If so, then how can there be faith? What good works were involved?

      Then, too, the “faith” and the “good works” were done as a result of the person having been “left to choose between good and evil.” Now this is surprising! You mean that before Adam partook of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil (i.e., before the foundation of the world) that some people had already obtained a knowledge of good and evil, been tempted, exhibited good works and acquired faith? How so? When and where did they do that? What does that tell us about them? Is this why Joseph said there were “sons of God who exalted themselves to be gods before the world was made?” (TPJS p. 375.)

      When and where and how did they do this? And was this required for any person to be able to claim they now have priestly authority here? Or is it only those who have the “holy order after the Son of God?” Is there something about these men’s “holy calling” that distinguishes them from others here? If so, what is it? Who are these men? Are they always going to be from unlikely sources and places, so that people can know how to recognize the Lord?

      Then, too, we have them in a class of people who had been through a “preparatory redemption” already. What does that mean? What does it imply? How did they qualify? How long have these souls been working on the process of redemption and thereby qualify through their faith and good works to hold authority in this estate? Who are they?

      Oh, now my head is spinning. Can this doctrine really be true? Why do we know so little about it? Why did Joseph talk about it, but we have simply nothing to add? Indeed, we deny it exists….. why is that?

      Source: http://denversnuffer.blogspot.com/2010/06/alma-133.html

      Again, this discussion is from Denver’s blog, source cited at the end:

      Now we encounter comments that everyone seems to use about this priesthood. It is “without beginning of days or end of years.” It is “from the foundation of the world.”

      It is “prepared from eternity to eternity.”

      When did eternity end and mortality begin?
      When does mortality end and eternity begin again?

      What does the phrase “from eternity to eternity” really refer to?

      Do we pass “from eternity” then back “to eternity” as part of this mortal experience?

      What went on before, back in the first “eternity?” We read elsewhere of this peaceful existence during “millennial” conditions, which end with rebellion, disputes and a war. Was Satan loosed in an earlier eternity after some season of peace to stir the hearts of men to anger one with another? (See Rev. 20: 7–9.)

      Was he cast out to hell, or the Telestial Kingdom, where we presently reside? What went on? How often would the Lord have gathered us as a hen gathers her chicks, but we would not be gathered? (I suppose His asking and the lack of an answer implies a great number.)

      What is it about what went on before, in the earlier “eternity,” that allows God to possess His perfect “foreknowledge of all things” now?

      What is this strange doctrine and the implications which flow from them? Was Joseph Smith trying to tell us this in the later Nauvoo talks? (Maybe we should read them again…)

      How is one to take it all in? How is the priesthood tied to this prior eternity? Why do we get side-tracked into the subject of “from eternity to eternity” when we learn about this endless priesthood which is without beginning of days or end of years?

      What is really going on? How can we learn of the truth? Is there no prophet who can declare it to us?

      Source: http://denversnuffer.blogspot.com/2010/06/alma-137.html

      • Log
        June 4, 2014 at 7:52 am

        I find myself dissatisfied with Snuffer’s take on Alma 13. “What is God’s foreknowledge based upon?”

        Well, I dunno – his knowledge of the future? After all, if all things are before him, both past, present, and future (D&C 130:7), and all is indeed as one day with God (Alma 40:8), then the source of all necessary knowledge on God’s part has been accounted for. The game has been played, from his perspective, and he already knows the final score.

        Alma 13 does not necessarily say the individuals in question were “ordained” before this life, but only necessarily says they were “called and prepared.” They were called and prepared because by his foreknowledge God knew who would choose good and exercise exceeding faith.

        But, in the end, the point is not to come up with a systematic theology, a summa theologica, or a creed, but to present mysteries and challenges which motivate the children of men to ask of God what these things meaneth. The way to stop men from inquiry is to make them believe they already have the answers they’re seeking.

        Why do you think we have nearly the same broken text of Isaiah as in the KJV, when “great are the words of Isaiah”? (No, Good Will, it’s not because Joseph knew the Bible – he didn’t, as the witnesses to the translation attest; Joseph, at the time, didn’t even know Jerusalem had walls.)

      • Contemplator
        June 4, 2014 at 9:15 am

        I think we get too caught up in the assumption that D&C 84:22 is talking about living in mortality. Thus, we enter into all kinds of logical gymnastics to give priesthood to anyone who sees god. If we instead assume that verse 22 is talking about eternal life the problem fades.

        The Savior said, “And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die.” Of course we all die a mortal death. Thus, for Jesus’ statement, in order to be correct, must be referring to eternal life. Thus, even though we go through mortal death, we come unto Christ and are made eternally alive. We will all return to God’s presence. But, the wicked will have to leave again. Thus, to the extent that the ordinances of the priesthood help us to be righteous, we get to see God, and live eternally.

        Just a thought.

      • Karl
        June 4, 2014 at 6:02 pm

        Tim, I side with Log on this one. I don’t think priesthood itself was part of the premortal existence (for us as spirits that is). God seems to be foreordaining us to priesthood in mortality, based on his perfect ability to predict the future, and our future exercise of exceeding faith. As for all your other questions, I think these are insoluble, since we are embedded in time & space, and obviously God is either outside this construct, or exaltation is beyond it altogether (probably). Hopefully when we all arrive there (in the Celestial Kingdom), we can compare notes. As for what we did before this life, obviously we choose God’s plan, but beyond that what “faith” or “good works” are in the premortal life is probably impossible to say really. It can’t be exactly what we are going through in mortality, otherwise why would we be going through the stress and trouble we are enduring here? As a missionary I taught that in premortal life we walked by sight, and in this life we walk by faith. Oh well–if you find any good resolutions to the questions you posited let me know.

  14. dutson58
    June 4, 2014 at 8:31 am

    Log
    I tend to agree with you “but” would add these thoughts and questions, tell me what I’m missing?
    How did we demonstrate faith and good works in the preexistence?
    By faith were the worlds created. In the preexistence “we” demonstrated that same faith!
    How did we choose good over evil?
    By choosing and supporting the Father and the Son and over Satan and his followers!
    How did we do good works?
    By preaching and teaching to Gods children the plan of salvation and the mission of Christ and His atonement, to counter the plan of Satan and contend against him.
    Who are these beings?
    The noble and great ones, who also as did Michael, help in the creation of the world, demonstrating faith and good works!
    Were we required to have some form of priesthood to do these things in the preexistence?

  15. Log
    June 4, 2014 at 8:42 am

    How did we demosntrate faith and good works in the preexistence?

    Oh ye of little pop culture exposure:

    The assumption that these events transpired during the preexistence is not necessarily supported by the text.

    But what does linear time mean to God? What does causality mean to God?

  16. June 4, 2014 at 6:58 pm

    Tim (or anyone), if the fulness of the priesthood is to be in the presence of the Father, and if everyone was premortally in the presence of the Father, does that mean that to you, everyone has the fulness of the priesthood?

    • June 4, 2014 at 7:47 pm

      Again, it’s easy to get confused as we discuss eternal principles that have not been fully revealed to us. We were unorganized intelligence’s before our “Heavenly Parents” created us, in similar manner as to the mortal experience.
      Obviously a Celestial Resurrected body can produce spirit matter that is coupled in the process with this previously unorganized intelligent matter, thereby creating the “Spirit Child”.
      One obviously has to have a beginning as such and grew in intelligence as one experienced our environment. Could we sin there, obviously we could because 1/3 of he host’s of heaven followed Lucifer’s plan. And in so doing they went contrary to God’s will, thereby sinning.
      We had to have the option of following the one or the other of our choices. What were not told is virtually anything about that existence other than what has been expounded in the scriptures. By the choices we made there we proved our worthiness to follow God’s plan with our Savior being our Atoning blood for our wayward courses. I have to believe that we could have found forgiveness in the pre-existent life in similar manner as those who were forgiven sins they committed many hundreds of years before the advent of our Savior here in mortality.

      So it is a clear principle that when it comes to eternal principles that time is not as we see it here. To God there can be no time, He is from Eternity to Eternity. As stated before the Fullness of the Priesthood is to have the very power of Heavenly Father, wherein all things are in subjection to one’s will and power. Now we would never do anything but what the Father would have us do and that is part of the covenant relationship we have with the Father at that time.

      There is so much more to this and other interesting items that relate to the Dispensation of the Fullness of Times.

      Brethren we need to get busy with the hastening of the work and seek understanding from our Heavenly Father and Lord Jesus Christ.

      • June 5, 2014 at 1:08 am

        D&C 93:29 – Man was also in the beginning with God. Intelligence, or the light of truth, was not created or made, neither indeed can be.

        Abraham 3:18 – [S]pirits … have no beginning; they existed before, they shall have no end, they shall exist after, for they are gnolaum, or eternal.

        Joseph Smith – The mind or the intelligence which man possesses is co-equal [co-eternal] with God himself…. I am dwelling on the immortality of the spirit of man…. The intelligence of spirits had not beginning, neither will it have an end…. There never was a time when there were not spirits; for they are co-equal [co-eternal] with our Father in heaven. (History of the Church, 6:302-317)

        The spirit of man is not a created being; it existed from eternity and will exist to eternity. Anything created cannot be eternal; and earth, water, etc.—all these had their existence in an elementary state from eternity…. The Father called all spirits before him at the creation of man and organized them. (Words of Joseph Smith, p. 9)

      • Karl
        June 6, 2014 at 5:44 pm

        Well, if you read Charles Harrell’s “This is My Doctrine,” the ideas you are stating as obvious will disintegrate. In fact everything you thought was rock-solid Mormon doctrine will dissolve also. It’s on sale for about $15 on Amazon, and it’s the best buy for LDS theology (500 pages). Best regards.

        • June 7, 2014 at 7:39 am

          Karl,
          Charles Harrell’s whole theory is that in researching the many theologies of the past one can come to a determination, or share a theory of such of other peoples theory. Much of what he shares is simply a re-statement of arguments come and gone. Many a writer before “This is My Doctrine” have espoused the same nugatory. How can anyone form a firm foundation from such? I do have to say I love to read rhetoric as it causes me to challenge myself to understand just how firm are my foundations.

          If one follows the promptings of the Holy Ghost, one need not be moved by every wind of doctrine that comes floating along on the wings of prepossessing for hire (financial gain).
          Karl, I can love you as a brother yet nothing Charles Harrell shares in his book moves me off my foundations. What has been revealed to me was never “rock-solid Mormon doctrine”, ever. I believe that the Father is working a mighty work and revealing things that have never before been understood.

          With sincere faith, prayer, and pondering over long periods of time, one can come to their own determinations of what is “doctrine”. I can allow my brother/sister to have his/her beliefs, but it need not knock me off my course….there has been too much shared to me for that to ever happen. I can feel quite comfortable in what has been revealed to me, yet always seeking greater knowledge and understanding…here a little and there a little.

          What I know, I know and that stands independent of any else’s theory(s). To each have their own individual path to salvation, though it be so very narrow and strait. Read all, ponder each, study and learn, but in the end only keep that which the Holy Spirit confirms. Thanks for your share though…

    • June 4, 2014 at 11:55 pm

      Is it possible to be in God’s presence and NOT receive the fulness of the priesthood?

      “Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them. And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou?” (Job 1:6–7).

  17. June 4, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    D&C 93:11–14

    11 And I, John, bear record that I beheld his glory, as the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, even the Spirit of truth, which came and dwelt in the flesh, and dwelt among us.

    12 And I, John, saw that he received not of the fulness at the first, but received grace for grace;

    13 And he received not of the fulness at first, but continued from grace to grace, until he received a fulness;

    14 And thus he was called the Son of God, because he received not of the fulness at the first.

    D&C 76:20: And we beheld the glory of the Son, on the right hand of the Father, and received of his fulness;

    John 1:16 – And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.

    D&C 76:94 – They who dwell in his presence are the church of the Firstborn; and they see as they are seen, and know as they are known, having received of his fulness and of his grace;

    To what kind of “fullness” do each of these refer?

    • June 4, 2014 at 9:11 pm

      Tim,
      It’s difficult to follow each of these. But first we need to understand that Jesus Christ, as God’s Only Begotten, had Eternal “spirit” in His veins; 23 chromosomes from His Father, an Immortal, Resurrected, Celestial Being, and 23 chromosomes from his mortal mother. That is why He could endure things that a mere mortal could never ascent to, i.e., fasting for 40 days, bleed from every pore, endure the beating of 40 stripes save 1, endure the horrendous pain of the Atonement, twice (once in Gethsemane and again on the cross) — all without dying. The Eternal matter that flowed in His veins gave Him the ability to endure all this and more.
      So He did not receive the fullness of the Father as a child, nor as a teenager, not quite as a young man, but He did receive of the Fullness on the Mount of Transfiguration, and what about Peter, James, and John who were with Him on the Mount. That is why John states they He (“we”) received, and grace for grace. John 1:16.

      Those who are members of the Church of the Firstborn are they whom all things are in subjection to. They have received both the calling and election and the Second Comforter. They are they whom has entered into that covenant relationship with the Father wherein all things are done according to their word. When they speak the Heavens listen. They see as they are seen (sameness), know as they are known (sameness), and through His grace from His only Begotten, we too can receive all that the Father has, Eternal Life with Him who’s we are.

  18. June 5, 2014 at 1:56 am

    I have enjoyed reading this conversation here, and I think I absorbed most of what was being said. I do have a question, ok maybe not a question but an observation.

    It occurs to me that the best way to find all of the answers you are looking for is to have the doctrine of the priesthood distill upon your soul as the dews from heaven. So, while learning and discussing what the fullness might be, wouldn’t it be better to just meet the conditions required for this understanding to be given? He is a much better teacher than we can be to each other. I am not saying there is no value in teaching each other, quite the opposite, but I am certain that this is only something that can be learned directly from the Lord, and it requires certain conditions to be met. There might come a point where we each have to turn to the Lord to learn so there can be experiential fruit.

    Besides, isn’t the goal to start receiving revelation, or so the temple seems to say? Sounds win / win to me.

    45 Let thy bowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the dews from heaven.

    46 The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of righteousness and truth; and thy dominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.

    (D&C 121:45–46)

    • Julie
      June 5, 2014 at 3:14 am

      You are absolutely right, I think. I was thinking about it earlier, when the discussion of Alma 13 began, that none of the explanations quite sit right with me, which only means that I’ve got to go to the source to ponder it out and understand it for myself. Thanks for the reminder. The discussions are still productive, however, because thinking critically about important topics and discussing them openly and without prejudice often opens the door for the Spirit to communicate with us.

    • June 5, 2014 at 10:01 am

      I agree. We need to learn these things directly form God Himself.

      Here are the steps to receive of the fullness: 1) Angels minister to you and confer power, light and truth. They prepare you to 2) receive the Lord. He ministers to you and confers promises, administers covenants, takes away your awful shame, and gives you promises. He prepares you to be 3) introduced to the Father. The Father makes you a son by accepting you through His Only Begotten Son.

      Along the way you will know for yourself the things which occur on the other side of the veil, where God and Christ dwell in glory. You will then learn about: angels, and then archangels, and then principalities, then powers, then dominions, then thrones, then Cherubim, and then Seraphim. Seraphim being those who dwell in everlasting burnings, the glorious ones, the ones who dwell in flames of glory.

      But first you have to part the veil. God bless us each on that path.

      • June 5, 2014 at 12:46 pm

        . . . and since “time only is measured unto men,” there is a possibility that events can occur out of (temporal) order, according to God’s will, grace, and pleasure.

        “I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him. That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past” (Ecclesiastes 3:14–15).

        Assuming that the angel is speaking words from God in 1 Nephi 12:10, then God in His foreknowledge knows that the Twelve Disciples “ARE [not 'shall be'] righteous forever.” Sounds like “Judgment Day” occurred for them before they were even born mortally.

  19. June 5, 2014 at 10:12 am

    By the way, here’s another point of view on D&C 84:21–22 about not being able to see the Father without the priesthood. The explanation offered in the apologetic article is the word “this” refers to the power of Godliness and not priesthood. Just thought I would throw that into the mix. Here are the relevant verses. In my mind they are the same, but you can decide for yourself:

    [19] “And this greater [i.e., Melchizedek] priesthood administereth the gospel and holdeth the key of the mysteries of the kingdom, even the key of the knowledge of God. [20] Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifest. [21] And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh; [22] For without this no man can see the face of God, even the Father, and live.”

    Source;
    http://en.fairmormon.org/Joseph_Smith%27s_First_Vision/Doctrine_and_Covenants_84_says_God_not_seen_without_priesthood

    • June 5, 2014 at 5:50 pm

      Before, I used to simply think that the power of godliness = the power of God.

      However, in the New Testament, “godliness” comes from the Greek eusebia (or theosebia), which may be more like reverence / respect / piety / devotion…

  20. jmhiatt
    June 5, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    Last Sunday with the priest quorum, I taught them the principle this and the last few posts have been focused re: the priesthood. Mainly, I discussed how one can have the priesthood conferred to legally perform the duties of the priesthood (authority) and then added that the power of the priesthood is based on personal righteousness that comes directly from God. I referenced Elder Packer’s conference talk. Everyone seemed to totally understand this concept – it wasn’t foreign to the priests, nor the YM leaders. I felt the Spirit present. I believe this principle needs to be directly taught within our quorums and classes within the church. It’s really not such an eye-popping, jaw-dropping concept. It’s rather easy to swallow actually.

    Now on to something that perhaps should not be taught directly…the discussion re: our pre-mortal life. Could it be possible that our belief (I believe it came from B.H. Roberts) that we were intelligences, then birthed into spirits is incorrect? Tim’s references seem to suggest as much.

    Remember, if we use Joseph’s King Follett discourse, we see that anything that has a beginning must have an end. If we were birthed into a spirit, then it has a beginning and an end. If we receive a resurrection, then it has a beginning and an end. If we get married, it must have a beginning and an end. What are we exactly? What of us is eternal?

    As for Snuffer’s First Three Words / Alma 13 concept that some of us having passed through an eternity already – I can believe it, especially if we have always existed. That’s a long time. Eternal rounds, eternal lives, exaltations to exaltations, and eternity to eternity – makes sense to me.

    If anyone has ever thought about this or read anything about this, please respond to the following. Question: Can we receive our calling and election and the Second Comforter in the spirit, meaning in the spirit world after we die? Or, can it only be received in the mortal flesh? This question is significant to how we view our present probation. (Perhaps Tim could address this in a future post…)

    • June 6, 2014 at 9:41 am

      If your definition of Second Comforter is seeing/meeting God, then I believe it can happen in the spirit world.

      “. . . the spirits of all men, whether they be good or evil, are taken home to that God who gave them life” (Alma 40:11).

      “. . . all children who die before they arrive at the years of accountability are saved in the celestial kingdom” (D&C 137:10).

      “The Lord takes many away even in infancy . . . they were too pure, too lovely, to live on earth” (TPJS 196-7). It’s hard to say if the organ-damaged newborn who mortally lives only a few hours in the NICU will see/meet God in those few hours. It might be more likely that they meet God in the spirit world, and then find that their calling and election has been made sure. And/or, they knew that they had their calling and election made sure premortally as spirits (or intelligences?), like the 12 disciples who “are righteous forever”.

    • June 6, 2014 at 8:44 pm

      jmhiatt,

      There are two separate endowments spoken of i.e., The Calling and Election is a priesthood ordinance, the keys of which are given to every Temple President in their setting apart endowment, a gift from Heaven. Please take the time to read D&C 132: 7:

      7 And verily I say unto you, that the conditions of this law are these: All covenants, contracts, bonds, obligations, oaths, vows, performances, connections, associations, or expectations, that are not made and entered into and sealed by the Holy Spirit of promise, of him who is anointed, both as well for time and for all eternity, and that too most holy, by revelation and commandment through the medium of mine anointed, whom I have appointed on the earth to hold this power (and I have appointed unto my servant Joseph to hold this power in the last days, and there is never but one on the earth at a time on whom this power and the keys of this priesthood are conferred), are of no efficacy, virtue, or force in and after the resurrection from the dead; for all contracts that are not made unto this end have an end when men are dead.

      And verse 19 & 20 of the same section:

      19 And again, verily I say unto you, if a man marry a wife by my word, which is my law, and by the new and everlasting covenant, and it is sealed unto them by the Holy Spirit of promise, by him who is anointed, unto whom I have appointed this power and the keys of this priesthood; and it shall be said unto them—Ye shall come forth in the first resurrection; and if it be after the first resurrection, in the next resurrection; and shall inherit thrones, kingdoms, principalities, and powers, dominions, all heights and depths—then shall it be written in the Lamb’s Book of Life, that he shall commit no murder whereby to shed innocent blood, and if ye abide in my covenant, and commit no murder whereby to shed innocent blood, it shall be done unto them in all things whatsoever my servant hath put upon them, in time, and through all eternity; and shall be of full force when they are out of the world; and they shall pass by the angels, and the gods, which are set there, to their exaltation and glory in all things, as hath been sealed upon their heads, which glory shall be a [fullness] and a continuation of the seeds forever and ever.

      20 Then shall they be gods, because they have no end; therefore shall they be from everlasting to everlasting, because they continue; then shall they be above all, because all things are subject unto them. Then shall they be gods, because they have all power, and the angels are subject unto them.

      Please read these verses and ask the Lord who is this that has this power/key. Again,

      “and it is sealed unto them by the Holy Spirit of promise, by him who is anointed, unto whom I have appointed this power and the keys of this priesthood; and it shall be said unto them—Ye shall come forth in the first resurrection;…”

      In our endowment in the Temple, the first one we receive, next time you go there listen very carefully to the wording — we are only promised that upon our worthiness (a future day) but in the above words it is not a future event. One who holds the Keys seals this upon the worthy recipient. Ask the question? Is there another endowment in the Lord’s House that could fulfill this second promise? That is one’s Calling and Election Sure or the More Sure Word of Prophecy.

      The Second Comforter is something that can only occur here in mortality. The endowment of one’s Calling and Election can be performed for the dead in the Lord’s Temple, but only by those who have had the endowment themselves. The Lord’s house is a house of order. The Second Comforter is wherein the Lord and the Father (for they are the “same”) come and make their abode with a mortal — the same as the Prophet Joseph Smith experienced.

      The Keys of this Priesthood is held by only One, the President of the Church, and can only be exercised with his personal approval. The Keys of this Priesthood can be exercised by others as they are commanded by the holder himself.

      What President Oaks was talking about in his talk on the Priesthood was very clear. Women can function in the gospel, using priesthood keys, as they are authorized by the holder of the keys — they are his to govern the use of.

      That is all I better say. I wish we could all join in the Temple of our God and share more of this…but it’s there if one will take the time to learn.

      • Log
        June 6, 2014 at 9:29 pm

        “The second anointing” is the apparent referent here. It is because of the existence of this ordinance that I cannot accept at face value any claims to “the more sure word of prophecy” in the modern Church; any claims to such may, and very probably does, mean that the claimant has merely undergone another temple ordinance (D&C 131:5), like Tom Phillips, notorious ex-mo who sued President Monson for fraud in the UK. Just as to be endowed with power from on high is not the same thing as having participated in an endowment ceremony (see Acts 2 for the fulfillment of the promise of Luke 24:49), so also is the more sure word of prophecy, as used by Peter (2 Peter 1:19), a different thing than merely having undergone an ordinance in the temple. It is the difference between being confirmed by the imposition of hands, and being baptized with fire and with the Holy Ghost.

        In Passing the Heavenly Gift, a rather pointed and clear account of J. Reuben Clark’s experience with respect to the second anointing is given. What is missing is painfully obvious.

        • June 6, 2014 at 10:53 pm

          Log,

          Much of what you say I can see and have no problem understanding. So if one is going to start throwing out endowments and ordinances of the Temple where does one stop? Shall we throw out the first endowment? Shall we throw out the “baptisms for the dead”? Shall we throw out “Celestial Marriage” and the attendant promises.
          I don’t have to take my education from someone in the UK who see’s dollar bills as he tries to impugn a religion, one that he dearly embraced until he lost the drive to endure to the end.
          The separation of what you are saying is apparent. But the validity of one does not necessitate the abolition of the other. There were those in the early church who witnessed both the Father and the Son yet had no Temple endowment what-so-ever.
          Again, if the Lord has promised us that all things will be revealed in this dispensation (D&C 121), if you want to obfuscate “the second anointing” then we might as well throw out baptism and the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost — just because it was done with mortal hands.
          Again, just because the richer endowment of having the heaven’s open to us wherein we witness the Father and the Son does not mean we eradicate another ordinance because it too is performed in the Temple and done by the ordination of hands. Like I said if we do where do we stop? A slippery slope for sure.
          Another point is that we know that human nature is to complicate sublime and beautiful concepts, there is much mystery and denouement in this thing called mortality.

      • June 6, 2014 at 10:33 pm

        All the principles and ordinances of the gospel are in a sense but invitations to learning the gospel by the practice of its teachings” (Harold B. Lee, Stand Ye In Holy Places, 215; bold added).

      • Log
        June 7, 2014 at 12:41 am

        But the validity of one does not necessitate the abolition of the other.

        I am solely explaining why [in our culture, within which, analogically speaking, receiving an invitation to a party is nearly universally mistaken for having attended it] I don’t take certain things at face value.

        It’s not really all that important.

    • June 7, 2014 at 6:52 am

      jmhiatt,

      Let’s go on an adventure and see what the possibilities are. The scientists of the land say they are seeking the “God Particle”. That basic of all basic elements that both acts and is acted upon. To act means to follow some form of organized pattern…to act upon means to accept direction from a higher source.

      Let’s say that that “God Particle” existed for all time and throughout all eternity. It has an existence the same as God. In the original there is only potential for the ability to improve and must of necessity come from a higher source. It’s so difficult to pull oneself up by ones own bootstraps. These basic elements exist in an existence devoid of Light — not physical of necessity.

      Suddenly, from a source of greater power, Light is shed upon the “darkness” and those “intelligence’s” respond to the Light and obey it’s word. They come to the light and by doing they exhibit faith and works. That affords them further growth opportunities under the direction of a merciful Deity. Those intelligence’s who responded to the Light move from outer darkness and into the Light, the same Light that giveth life and has through all eternity. Now these intelligence’s have been added upon as they showed great faith in what was being offered. There of necessity needs be the opposition. Have we enough knowledge that’s been revealed to understand just how many “Eternities” we’ve come through to arrive at this place and time with our Heavenly Parents, no. This could require many “eternities” to arrive at this place. Let’s look at a few scriptures from the Book of Mormon:

      Helaman 3:30
      30 And land their souls, yea, their immortal souls, at the right hand of God in the kingdom of heaven, to sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and with Jacob, and with all our holy fathers, to go no more out.

      and speaking of the Three Nephites:

      3 Nephi 28:40
      40 And in this state they were to remain until the judgment day of Christ; and at that day they were to receive a greater change, and to be received into the kingdom of the Father to go no more out, but to dwell with God eternally in the heavens.

      Alma 34:36
      36 And this I know, because the Lord hath said he dwelleth not in unholy temples, but in the hearts of the righteous doth he dwell; yea, and he has also said that the righteous shall sit down in his kingdom, to go no more out; but their garments should be made white through the blood of the Lamb.
      Alma 7:25
      25 And may the Lord bless you, and keep your garments spotless, that ye may at last be brought to sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and the holy prophets who have been ever since the world began, having your garments spotless even as their garments are spotless, in the kingdom of heaven to go no more out.
      Alma 29:17
      17 And now may God grant unto these, my brethren, that they may sit down in the kingdom of God; yea, and also all those who are the fruit of their labors that they may go no more out, but that they may praise him forever. And may God grant that it may be done according to my words, even as I have spoken. Amen.

      So are there multiple possibilities of “Eternity to Eternity” and multiple times that we left the presence of a higher existence to “dwell” in some lower existence…reverse logic states that if we would “go no more out” we must have experienced multiple times of “going out”. Even John The Divine understood something regarding this doctrine:

      Revelation 3:12
      12 Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

      The worthy intelligence’s continue to find growth by obeying the Light and eventually are called up to unite with a Celestial Spirit being formed in the belly of their HM. The birth process continues until the growth of the spirit child has progressed so much that now it’s time for the physical body formed and populated by all of God’s children.

      Yet 1/3 of these billions of (intelligence spirits now) sinned by choosing evil instead of good. Therein they sinned, and being unrepentant they were banished. So it is apparent that we could have “sinned” prior to this existence, for if there is a punishment there must needs be a law. And if there be a law there must be a reward for the faithful following it (See Alma 41, Law of Restoration). By following righteousness and obeying that which God the Father”s have given us we continue to progress from “Eternity to Eternity”.

      Just a thought…what are the odds that of all the existent worlds possible, worlds without end, we live wherein our Savior has followed the footsteps of His Father. So that must needs be that our ‘common’ (used capriciously) Father was once a Savior. It boggles the mind of what the meaning of “Eternity to Eternity” could really mean.

      For me I can only hope to follow what the Lord tells me and to land my Immortal soul back with He who has made all this possible, and bathe His feet with tears of Gratitude and Praise forever.
      We can only hope that we follow Mormon’s editorial of Helaman’s record…..
      Helaman 3:30
      30 And land their souls, yea, their immortal souls, at the right hand of God in the kingdom of heaven, to sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and with Jacob, and with all our holy fathers, to go no more out.

      All things will be revealed in this Dispensation of The Fullness of Times:

      D&C 121:
      26
      God shall give unto you knowledge by his Holy Spirit, yea, by the unspeakable gift of the Holy Ghost, that has not been revealed since the world was until now;

      27 Which our forefathers have awaited with anxious expectation to be revealed in the last times, which their minds were pointed to by the angels, as held in reserve for the fulness of their glory;

      28 A time to come in the which nothing shall be withheld, whether there be one God or many gods, they shall be manifest.

      29 All thrones and dominions, principalities and powers, shall be revealed and set forth upon all who have endured valiantly for the gospel of Jesus Christ.

      30 And also, if there be bounds set to the heavens or to the seas, or to the dry land, or to the sun, moon, or stars—

      31 All the times of their revolutions, all the appointed days, months, and years, and all the days of their days, months, and years, and all their glories, laws, and set times, shall be revealed in the days of the dispensation of the fulness of times—

      32 According to that which was ordained in the midst of the Council of the Eternal God of all other gods before this world was, that should be reserved unto the finishing and the end thereof, when every man shall enter into his eternal presence and into his immortal rest.

      Sorry for the long post…yet it necessary.

  21. June 8, 2014 at 7:03 pm

    Here is another blog that is seeking to share The Lord like Tim and others….and may the word of the Lord spread far and wide that we may hasten the work of the Father in these later days.

    file:///C:/Users/Owner/Google%20Drive/OK,%20What%20Next%20%20%20%20Sacred%20Things.htm

    Copy and paste to your browser or just click…and enjoy more of the same.

  22. June 8, 2014 at 7:13 pm
  23. jmhiatt
    June 10, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    Thanks to all who answered. I really appreciated your comments and insights.

    Another question:

    33 And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed. – Alma 34:33

    What is the “night of darkness” and when do we experience the inability to perform labors?

    It seems a common thought that we never really lose our ability to progress eternally. You hear repeatedly within the church, “it will be worked out in the next life.” Even Joseph Smith said in the King Follett discourse,

    “When you climb a ladder, you must begin at the bottom, and ascend step by step until you arrive at the top; and so it is with the principles of the Gospel: you must begin with the first, and go on until you learn all the principles of exaltation. But it will be a great while after you have passed through the vail before you will have learned them. It is not all to be comprehended in this world: it will be a great work to learn our salvation and exaltation even beyond the grave.”

    Are these two quotes contradictory? Any additional thoughts on this would be appreciated.

    • June 10, 2014 at 6:36 pm

      It does seem contradictory. See if this can shed some light on the subject:

      Alma 40

      11 Now, concerning the state of the soul between death and the resurrection—Behold, it has been made known unto me by an angel, that the spirits of all men, as soon as they are departed from this mortal body, yea, the spirits of all men, whether they be good or evil, are taken home to that God who gave them life.

      12 And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow.

      13 And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of the wicked, yea, who are evil—for behold, they have no part nor portion of the Spirit of the Lord; for behold, they chose evil works rather than good; therefore the spirit of the devil did enter into them, and take possession of their house—and these shall be cast out into outer darkness; there shall be weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth, and this because of their own iniquity, being led captive by the will of the devil.e if this sheds some light on the subject:

      We all know these teachings to be true. But further light has been shed upon this as well. We read in the D&C:

      Section 138

      29 And as I wondered, my eyes were opened, and my understanding quickened, and I perceived that the Lord went not in person among the wicked and the disobedient who had rejected the truth, to teach them;

      30 But behold, from among the righteous, he organized his forces and appointed messengers, clothed with power and authority, and commissioned them to go forth and carry the light of the gospel to them that were in darkness, even to all the spirits of men; and thus was the gospel preached to the dead.

      31 And the chosen messengers went forth to declare the acceptable day of the Lord and proclaim liberty to the captives who were bound, even unto all who would repent of their sins and receive the gospel.

      32 Thus was the gospel preached to those who had died in their sins, without a knowledge of the truth, or in transgression, having rejected the prophets.

      33 These were taught faith in God, repentance from sin, vicarious baptism for the remission of sins, the gift of the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands,

      34 And all other principles of the gospel that were necessary for them to know in order to qualify themselves that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

      35 And so it was made known among the dead, both small and great, the unrighteous as well as the faithful, that redemption had been wrought through the sacrifice of the Son of God upon the cross.

      36 Thus was it made known that our Redeemer spent his time during his sojourn in the world of spirits, instructing and preparing the faithful spirits of the prophets who had testified of him in the flesh;

      37 That they might carry the message of redemption unto all the dead, unto whom he could not go personally, because of their rebellion and transgression, that they through the ministration of his servants might also hear his words.

      So we can progress in knowledge as we are in the Spirit World. Whether we’re in “paradise” or “spirit prison” we can improve our knowledge because someone of a higher knowledge base can instruct those of a lower knowledge base. The Gospel is preached and we can learn more items regarding our eternal progress and the path it follows.

      But we can do no work. We can’t be baptized. We cannot go through the Temple and receive our “endowment(s)”. We can obviously see others and be taught by others but there seems to be limitations as to who the visitors can be. The Lord went not unto the spirits in prison, but He marshaled His forces and had them preach to those spirits.

      Since no one can do their own work as spirits we are all in a sense in a state of “darkness” wherein we can do no work, saving, exalting, progressing, work. We are totally dependent upon those in mortality to do our work for us. If we have accepted our baptism for a remission of sins and had the gift of the Holy Ghost given us, but never made it to the Temple, we would require those in mortality to do that work for us.

      And we are in a sense in that period of time wherein no work can be performed by ourselves independent of any one else. We are totally dependent upon others for our work to be done — but more than this, we are also dependent upon others from a higher knowledge base to share with us those principles we didn’t learn while in mortality.

      The Prophets have taught that whatever intelligence we attain here it will go with us into the world of spirits and we will be that much better for attaining the knowledge here.

      This work must be done while we’re in the world of spirits. For in the resurrection we receive the bodies we have been restored to in diligence to the faith and works we performed while in “mortality”, including all the work for the dead being performed in the Temples of our God. That is what is meant by Peter’s testament:

      1 Peter 4

      10 “For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.” (1 Peter 4:6.)

      So the discrepancy disappears it seems. To say nothing of the progress we make after the resurrection.

      Just my thoughts.

      • June 11, 2014 at 8:33 am

        That does appear to be a way of synthesizing the two ideas. So the key would be that “labor” in Alma 34:33 refers to “physical labor.”

        Other comments here brought up some questions in my mind regarding “from eternity” and “to eternity:”

        “From eternity”

        Do any scriptures support or oppose the possibility of one or more PRE-mortal probations? (In addition to the “to go no more out” scriptures.)

        Could it be that either we have gone through one or more “plans of salvation,” or “cycles of the eternal round,” before this current one, with mortal probations but no resurrection; &/or we had one or more “immortal” probationary periods when our intelligences/spirits were temporarily away from God’s presence to gain experiences?

        “To eternity”

        Do any scriptures support or oppose the possibility of one or more POST-mortal probations?

        Could there be a possibility, for example, that exalted people become an “Adam [& Eve] on earth” (Brigham Young, JD 4:271) and “produce mortal tabernacles for their spiritual children” (Brigham Young, JD 6:275)?

        The “to go no more out” scripture would need to be interpreted (wrested?) to mean that you don’t leave the Kingdom of Heaven, but since exalted persons have the Kingdom of Heaven fully realized within them, wherever they go, there is the Kingdom of Heaven.

        “Then the white stone mentioned in Revelation 2:17, will become a Urim and Thummim to each individual who receives one, whereby things pertaining to a higher order of kingdoms will be made known” (D&C 130:10).

        Does “made known” mean the same thing as “made able to enter into”?

        If so, what does this mean about the “no progression between kingdoms” idea? Can resurrected bodies change in glory? (I’m not necessarily opposed to that, since translated bodies are said to be of the terrestrial order.)

        If not, does that mean all of us have already been judged to be (at best) “celestial material,” and we can’t progress to a higher order of kingdoms, but can only know about them?

        “. . . when we have passed into the sphere where Joseph [Smith] is, there is still another department, and then another, and another, and so on to an eternal progression in exaltation and eternal lives. That is the exaltation I am looking for. . . . The kingdoms that God has prepared are innumerable. . . . How many kingdoms of glory there are, I know not; and how many degrees of glory there are in these kingdoms, I know not; but there are multitudes of them. Paul speaks of three, Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon saw three, and multitudes more have we seen by the Spirit of revelation, according to the capacity of our understandings” (Brigham Young, JD 3:375, 8:155, 9:107).

        “Paul saw the third heavens, and I more” (TPJS 301). (Although I suppose this could mean that he also saw, say, the 2nd heaven.)

        “Every man will be rewarded according to the deeds done in the body. Those who have received pure and heavenly principles, and lived up to them, and kept the celestial law of God, will enjoy a celestial kingdom. . . I believe, furthermore, that there are eternal grades of progression, which will continue worlds without end, and to an infinity of enjoyment, expansion, glory, progression, and of everything calculated to ennoble and exalt mankind” (John Taylor, JD 1:159).

        But anyway, does anyone know any scripture regarding these ideas (for or against)?

        • June 11, 2014 at 10:33 pm

          Eric,

          There is much to learn regarding the Eternities. These verses should give all of us some needed nourishment.

          St. John obviously understood “from grace to grace; and from eternity to eternity”. The Lord shared it again with the Prophet Joseph Smith Jr.; and all the Lord’s anointed of this day have commented on this section of the modern day revelation.

          D & C 93:

          8 Therefore, in the beginning the Word was, for he was the Word, even the messenger of salvation—

          9 The light and the Redeemer of the world; the Spirit of truth, who came into the world, because the world was made by him, and in him was the life of men and the light of men.

          10 The worlds were made by him; men were made by him; all things were made by him, and through him, and of him.

          11 And I, John, bear record that I beheld his glory, as the glory of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth, even the Spirit of truth, which came and dwelt in the flesh, and dwelt among us.

          12 And I, John, saw that he received not of the fulness at the first, but received grace for grace;

          13 And he received not of the fulness at first, but continued from grace to grace, until he received a fulness;

          14 And thus he was called the Son of God, because he received not of the fulness at the first.

          15 And I, John, bear record, and lo, the heavens were opened, and the Holy Ghost descended upon him in the form of a dove, and sat upon him, and there came a voice out of heaven saying: This is my beloved Son.

          16 And I, John, bear record that he received a fulness of the glory of the Father;

          17 And he received all power, both in heaven and on earth, and the glory of the Father was with him, for he dwelt in him.

          18 And it shall come to pass, that if you are faithful you shall receive the fulness of the record of John.

          19 I give unto you these sayings that you may understand and know how to worship, and know what you worship, that you may come unto the Father in my name, and in due time receive of his fulness.

          20 For if you keep my commandments you shall receive of his fulness, and be glorified in me as I am in the Father; therefore, I say unto you, you shall receive grace for grace.

          21 And now, verily I say unto you, I was in the beginning with the Father, and am the Firstborn;

          22 And all those who are begotten through me are partakers of the glory of the same, and are the church of the Firstborn.

          23 Ye were also in the beginning with the Father; that which is Spirit, even the Spirit of truth;

          In verse 8 through 16 it repeats four times that the Lord received not of the fullness at the first, yet each verse seems to build upon the other….v. 8 states “at the first”….vs. 9 states “at first” (is the second at building upon the first “the first”), and finally on the third attempt He received “the fullness” v. 16.

          To have the heaven’s open and have the promise of Eternal Life passed upon one does not mean he/she has arrived. Yes the person has an anchor to their soul as the storms of life beat upon them, that of the promise of Eternal Life, but they have not arrived yet.

          Why should one think that they are going to somehow be gifted this “fullness of all that the Father hath” without doing the works of the one who makes all this possible. So if the Lord had to go from grace to grace and from Eternity to Eternity should we think that we can shorten the experience panorama and get to the “Fullness of the Father” in a shorter time frame of some other path so as to not just be promised but to have and to own the “Fullness of the Father’.

          He only did the works that He saw His Father do. Eventually He was given The Fullness but not at the first. So we too must improve from grace to grace and from eternity to eternity. Why should we think that we have a shorter or easier path to the Fullness of the Father.

          Ask — Seek — Knock.

          Keep reading these versus until the Lord grabs your mind and you say hallelujah, tis emough Lord for my eyes have seen the salvation of my soul.

          It explains both grace for grace and Eternity to Eternity in an overly simple way but the hidden pearls of knowledge begin to distill and the long lost covering of our eyes begins to shed itself.

      • Log
        June 11, 2014 at 9:32 am

        Alma 11:45
        45 Now, behold, I have spoken unto you concerning the death of the mortal body, and also concerning the resurrection of the mortal body. I say unto you that this mortal body is raised to an immortal body, that is from death, even from the first death unto life, that they can die no more; their spirits uniting with their bodies, never to be divided; thus the whole becoming spiritual and immortal, that they can no more see corruption.

        Alma 12:18
        18 Then, I say unto you, they shall be as though there had been no redemption made; for they cannot be redeemed according to God’s justice; and they cannot die, seeing there is no more corruption.

        Alma 40
        1 Now my son, here is somewhat more I would say unto thee; for I perceive that thy mind is worried concerning the resurrection of the dead.

        2 Behold, I say unto you, that there is no resurrection—or, I would say, in other words, that this mortal does not put on immortality, this corruption does not put on incorruption—until after the coming of Christ.

        3 Behold, he bringeth to pass the resurrection of the dead. But behold, my son, the resurrection is not yet. Now, I unfold unto you a mystery; nevertheless, there are many mysteries which are kept, that no one knoweth them save God himself. But I show unto you one thing which I have inquired diligently of God that I might know—that is concerning the resurrection.

        4 Behold, there is a time appointed that all shall come forth from the dead. Now when this time cometh no one knows; but God knoweth the time which is appointed.

        5 Now, whether there shall be one time, or a second time, or a third time, that men shall come forth from the dead, it mattereth not; for God knoweth all these things; and it sufficeth me to know that this is the case—that there is a time appointed that all shall rise from the dead.

        6 Now there must needs be a space betwixt the time of death and the time of the resurrection.

        7 And now I would inquire what becometh of the souls of men from this time of death to the time appointed for the resurrection?

        8 Now whether there is more than one time appointed for men to rise it mattereth not; for all do not die at once, and this mattereth not; all is as one day with God, and time only is measured unto men.

        9 Therefore, there is a time appointed unto men that they shall rise from the dead; and there is a space between the time of death and the resurrection. And now, concerning this space of time, what becometh of the souls of men is the thing which I have inquired diligently of the Lord to know; and this is the thing of which I do know.

        10 And when the time cometh when all shall rise, then shall they know that God knoweth all the times which are appointed unto man.

        11 Now, concerning the state of the soul between death and the resurrection—Behold, it has been made known unto me by an angel, that the spirits of all men, as soon as they are departed from this mortal body, yea, the spirits of all men, whether they be good or evil, are taken home to that God who gave them life.

        12 And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow.

        13 And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of the wicked, yea, who are evil—for behold, they have no part nor portion of the Spirit of the Lord; for behold, they chose evil works rather than good; therefore the spirit of the devil did enter into them, and take possession of their house—and these shall be cast out into outer darkness; there shall be weeping, and wailing, and gnashing of teeth, and this because of their own iniquity, being led captive by the will of the devil.

        14 Now this is the state of the souls of the wicked, yea, in darkness, and a state of awful, fearful looking for the fiery indignation of the wrath of God upon them; thus they remain in this state, as well as the righteous in paradise, until the time of their resurrection.

        15 Now, there are some that have understood that this state of happiness and this state of misery of the soul, before the resurrection, was a first resurrection. Yea, I admit it may be termed a resurrection, the raising of the spirit or the soul and their consignation to happiness or misery, according to the words which have been spoken.

        16 And behold, again it hath been spoken, that there is a first resurrection, a resurrection of all those who have been, or who are, or who shall be, down to the resurrection of Christ from the dead.

        17 Now, we do not suppose that this first resurrection, which is spoken of in this manner, can be the resurrection of the souls and their consignation to happiness or misery. Ye cannot suppose that this is what it meaneth.

        18 Behold, I say unto you, Nay; but it meaneth the reuniting of the soul with the body, of those from the days of Adam down to the resurrection of Christ.

        19 Now, whether the souls and the bodies of those of whom has been spoken shall all be reunited at once, the wicked as well as the righteous, I do not say; let it suffice, that I say that they all come forth; or in other words, their resurrection cometh to pass before the resurrection of those who die after the resurrection of Christ.

        20 Now, my son, I do not say that their resurrection cometh at the resurrection of Christ; but behold, I give it as my opinion, that the souls and the bodies are reunited, of the righteous, at the resurrection of Christ, and his ascension into heaven.

        21 But whether it be at his resurrection or after, I do not say; but this much I say, that there is a space between death and the resurrection of the body, and a state of the soul in happiness or in misery until the time which is appointed of God that the dead shall come forth, and be reunited, both soul and body, and be brought to stand before God, and be judged according to their works.

        22 Yea, this bringeth about the restoration of those things of which has been spoken by the mouths of the prophets.

        23 The soul shall be restored to the body, and the body to the soul; yea, and every limb and joint shall be restored to its body; yea, even a hair of the head shall not be lost; but all things shall be restored to their proper and perfect frame.

        24 And now, my son, this is the restoration of which has been spoken by the mouths of the prophets—

        25 And then shall the righteous shine forth in the kingdom of God.

        26 But behold, an awful death cometh upon the wicked; for they die as to things pertaining to things of righteousness; for they are unclean, and no unclean thing can inherit the kingdom of God; but they are cast out, and consigned to partake of the fruits of their labors or their works, which have been evil; and they drink the dregs of a bitter cup.

        Doctrine and Covenants 138:17
        17 Their sleeping dust was to be restored unto its perfect frame, bone to his bone, and the sinews and the flesh upon them, the spirit and the body to be united never again to be divided, that they might receive a fulness of joy.

        1 Corinthians 2
        1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God.

        2 For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.

        3 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.

        4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power:

        5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

        6 Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:

        7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:

        8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

        9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

        10 But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.

        11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

        12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God.

        13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.

        14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

        15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

        16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

        Let them with ears to hear, hear.

      • Nathan Shackelford
        June 12, 2014 at 6:36 am

        @ Log — speaking of this topic (ie. Alma 12 & resurrection) … this seems to be an article right up your alley (maybe), as I was completely lost :) Of course, many (not all) of the articles I have read from ldsanarchy site have been so mind blowingly incredible for me … they just stretch and rip me! Maybe it was just more the analysis and detail that brought you to mind :)

        http://ldsanarchy.wordpress.com/2014/05/06/a-curious-reading-of-alma-128-18/

      • Log
        June 12, 2014 at 7:59 am

        I reject all commentary.

        It is through commentary that the philosophies of men are mingled with scripture.

        If you understand 1 Corinthians 2, quoted above, the meaning of speculation in matters religious is apparent.

      • Nathan Shackelford
        June 12, 2014 at 8:20 am

        Razor sharp … as always!

  24. June 14, 2014 at 8:40 am

    Those who seek Truth and the things of Heaven should not be denigrated. Joseph Smith was a seeker of Truth and because of it he experienced matters of great import concerning the salvation of mankind and our relationship to God.

    “…the things of God are of deep import; and experience, and careful and ponderous and solemn thoughts can only find them out. Thy mind, oh man! if thou wilt lead a soul unto salvation, must stretch as high as the utmost heavens, and search into and contemplate the darkest abyss, and the broad expanse of eternity—thou must commune with God.” (HV 3: 298)

    Too many use scripture to bind the mind and form conclusions that are based on, or from, confusion.

    1 Nephi 10

    19 For he that diligently seeketh shall find; and the mysteries of God shall be unfolded unto them, by the power of the Holy Ghost, as well in these times as in times of old, and as well in times of old as in times to come; wherefore, the course of the Lord is one eternal round.

    2 Nephi 29

    10 Wherefore, because that ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written.

    Joseph Smith

    “I want to see truth in all its bearings and hug it to my bosom. I believe all that God ever revealed, and I never hear of a man being damned for believing too much; but they are damned for unbelief.” (TofTPJS, p. 373)

    “The best way to obtain truth and wisdom is not to ask it from books, but to go to God in prayer, and obtain divine teachings.” (HC 4:425)

    D&C 42

    61 If thou shalt ask, thou shalt receive revelation upon revelation, knowledge upon knowledge, that thou mayest know the mysteries and peaceable things—that which bringeth joy, that which bringeth life eternal.

    I find great joy in learning more about the God I worship and just exactly what is my relationship with Him…and I know that He reveals to me those things of my heart. If I am to be truly His son then it makes sense that He will reveal the greatest mysteries to me and to all who seek Truth! For all things must be known at some time.

    Alma 26

    22 Yea, he that repenteth and exerciseth faith, and bringeth forth good works, and prayeth continually without ceasing—unto such it is given to know the mysteries of God; yea, unto such it shall be given to reveal things which never have been revealed; yea, and it shall be given unto such to bring thousands of souls to repentance, even as it has been given unto us to bring these our brethren to repentance.

    D&C 6

    5 Therefore, if you will ask of me you shall receive; if you will knock it shall be opened unto you.

    11 And if thou wilt inquire, thou shalt know mysteries which are great and marvelous; therefore thou shalt exercise thy gift, that thou mayest find out mysteries, that thou mayest bring many to the knowledge of the truth, yea, convince them of the error of their ways.

    D&C 121 (again)

    26 God shall give unto you knowledge by his Holy Spirit, yea, by the unspeakable gift of the Holy Ghost, that has not been revealed since the world was until now;

    27 Which our forefathers have awaited with anxious expectation to be revealed in the last times, which their minds were pointed to by the angels, as held in reserve for the fulness of their glory;

    28 A time to come in the which nothing shall be withheld, whether there be one God or many gods, they shall be manifest.

    D&C 42

    61 If thou shalt ask, thou shalt receive revelation upon revelation, knowledge upon knowledge, that thou mayest know the mysteries and peaceable things—that which bringeth joy, that which bringeth life eternal.

    D&C 76

    7 And to them will I reveal all mysteries, yea, all the hidden mysteries of my kingdom from days of old, and for ages to come, will I make known unto them the good pleasure of my will concerning all things pertaining to my kingdom.

    8 Yea, even the wonders of eternity shall they know, and things to come will I show them, even the things of many generations.

    9 And their wisdom shall be great, and their understanding reach to heaven; and before them the wisdom of the wise shall perish, and the understanding of the prudent shall come to naught.

    10 For by my Spirit will I enlighten them, and by my power will I make known unto them the secrets of my will—yea, even those things which eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor yet entered into the heart of man.

    I do not shy away from criticism in any of its forms. Why is it we seek to suppress the things of God and the mysteries of His works..I seek to understand the things of God, the things of great import unto man, the destiny of mankind in the Heavenly abode. I seek learning from the best books, and other writings, and with the Holy Spirit as my guide I can discern the Truth from error. But never will I allow the Bible to the only source of my learning — for its teachings has spawned some 2,000 or more interpretations, surely a mass of confusion.

    I, like Nephi, seek only:
    2 Nephi 4

    35 Yea, I know that God will give liberally to him that asketh. Yea, my God will give me, if I ask not amiss; therefore I will lift up my voice unto thee; yea, I will cry unto thee, my God, the rock of my righteousness. Behold, my voice shall forever ascend up unto thee, my rock and mine everlasting God. Amen.

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