Posts Tagged 'Ordination'

1 Chronicles Chapter 6

A Family Tree

Levi was the third son of Jacob after Reuben and Simeon. He was the son of Leah, Jacob’s first wife. He and his brother Simeon had killed the Shechemites for the actions of Shechem against their sister Dinah. Because of this they were cursed to be divided and scattered in Israel. The family of Levi are listed in this chapter, beginning with the following:

1 The sons of Levi; Gershon, Kohath, and Merari.
2 And the sons of Kohath; Amram, Izhar, and Hebron, and Uzziel.
3 And the children of Amram; Aaron, and Moses, and Miriam. The sons also of Aaron; Nadab, and Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar.

Levi had three sons named Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. (See also Genesis 46:11, Exodus 6:16, and Numbers 3:17) Levi’s son Kohath, was the father of Amram (Amramites), Izhar (Izeharites), Hebron (Hebronites) and Uzziel (Uzzielites). (See also Numbers 3:27) Amram, married Jochebed and became the father of Aaron, Moses, and Miriam. (see also Exodus 6:20 and Numbers 26:59) Aaron was called to assist Moses and he became his spokesman. Moses was the prophet whom the Lord called to deliver the children of Israel from Egypt and lead them to the promised land. Miriam, their sister, was a prophetess who was humbled by the Lord when judged Moses for his choice in his wife. (see Exodus 3, 4, 15, and Numbers 12) Aaron was the father of Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar. Nadab and Abihu died without sons, because they offered strange fire against the commandment of the Lord. (see Leviticus 10:1-2) The line of Aaron, was then continued on through Eleazar and Ithamar. Eleazar was given the duties of Aaron after he died. (See also Numbers 3:2, 26:60-61, Deuteronomy 10:6, and 1 Chronicles 24:2)

4 Eleazar begat Phinehas, Phinehas begat Abishua,
5 And Abishua begat Bukki, and Bukki begat Uzzi,
6 And Uzzi begat Zerahiah, and Zerahiah begat Meraioth,
7 Meraioth begat Amariah, and Amariah begat Ahitub,
8 And Ahitub begat Zadok, and Zadok begat Ahimaaz,
9 And Ahimaaz begat Azariah, and Azariah begat Johanan,
10 And Johanan begat Azariah, (he it is that executed the priest’s office in the temple that Solomon built in Jerusalem:)
11 And Azariah begat Amariah, and Amariah begat Ahitub,
12 And Ahitub begat Zadok, and Zadok begat Shallum,
13 And Shallum begat Hilkiah, and Hilkiah begat Azariah,
14 And Azariah begat Seraiah, and Seraiah begat Jehozadak,
15 And Jehozadak went into captivity, when the Lord carried away Judah and Jerusalem by the hand of Nebuchadnezzar.

Eleazar was the father of Phinehas. He saved Israel from the curse of a plague, and was blessed with a covenant of peace and the priesthood for his posterity. (see Numbers 25 and Psalm 106) He became the high priest. Phinehas was the father of Abishua, who was the father of Bukki. Bukki was the father of Uzzi, who was the father of Zerahiah. Zerahiah was the father of Meraioth, who was the father of Amariah, who was the father of Ahitub. Ahitub was the father of Zadok, who was one of the priests for King David and later Solomon. He remained faithful to David during rebellion in Jerusalem. Zadok was the father of Ahimaaz. Ahimaaz was assigned to deliver messages to David during the rebellion, and at one point was even hidden in a well. (see 2 Samuel 17 and 18) He was the father of Azariah. Azaraiah was a prince in Solomon’s court. Azariah was the father of Johanan, who was the father of Azariah. Azariah was the priest at the time when Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem. He was serving when king Uzziah trespassed against the Lord by burning incense in the temple, and was then cursed with leprosy.

Azariah (possibly the same as already mentioned) was the father of Amariah, who was the father of Ahitub, who was the father of Zadok. Zadok was the father of Shallum, who was the father of Hilkiah. He was the priest who found the book of the law, which was given to Josiah, who then restored the knowledge of the law to the people of Judah and made covenants with the Lord. Hikliah was the father of Azariah, who was the father of Seraiah. Seraiah was taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar’s captain of the guard, and slain by the king. He had been the father of Jehozadak. When Judah and Jerusalem was taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar, Jehozadak went into captivity. (see also 2 Samuel 8, 1 Kings 1, 2, 4:2, 2 Kings 22, 25, and 2 Chronicles 26)

16 The sons of Levi; Gershom, Kohath, and Merari.
17 And these be the names of the sons of Gershom; Libni, and Shimei.
18 And the sons of Kohath were, Amram, and Izhar, and Hebron, and Uzziel.
19 The sons of Merari; Mahli, and Mushi. And these are the families of the Levites according to their fathers.

Again, Levi had three sons. Gershom became the father of Libni and Shimei. Kohath became the father of Amram, Izhar, Hebrom, and Uzziel (mentioned above). Merari became the father of Mahli and Mushi. These were the patriarchs of the tribe of Levi.

20 Of Gershom; Libni his son, Jahath his son, Zimmah his son,
21 Joah his son, Iddo his son, Zerah his son, Jeaterai his son.

Libni was the father of Jahath, Zimmah, Joah, Iddo, Zerah, and Jeaterai.

22 The sons of Kohath; Amminadab his son, Korah his son, Assir his son,
23 Elkanah his son, and Ebiasaph his son, and Assir his son,
24 Tahath his son, Uriel his son, Uzziah his son, and Shaul his son.
25 And the sons of Elkanah; Amasai, and Ahimoth.

Kohath was the patriarch of Amminadab, Korah, Assir, Elkanah, Ebiasaph, Assir, Tahath, Uriel, Uzziah and Shaul. Korah rebelled against Moses and Aaron, believing they were not the leaders for them called by God, and he and his family were destroyed when the Lord opened up the ground beneath them. (see Numbers 16) Elkanah was the father of Amasai and Ahimoth by his wife Peninnah. Elkanah was also the husband of Hannah, who was barren and prayed to God for a child, while she was in the temple. Her prayers were answered and she bore Samuel, who was given to the Lord by Hannah. (See also 1 Samuel 1)

26 As for Elkanah: the sons of Elkanah; Zophai his son, and Nahath his son,
27 Eliab his son, Jeroham his son, Elkanah his son.
28 And the sons of Samuel; the firstborn Vashni, and Abiah.

Elkanah was the patriarch of Zophai, Nahath, Eliab, Jeroham, and Elkanah. Samuel, the son of Elkanah mentioned above, was the father of Vashni (Joel) and Abiah. They became judges over Israel, but they were not righteous judges and so the people turned against the Lord, and asked for a king to be over them instead. (See also 1 Samuel 8)

29 The sons of Merari; Mahli, Libni his son, Shimei his son, Uzza his son,
30 Shimea his son, Haggiah his son, Asaiah his son.
31 And these are they whom David set over the service of song in the house of the Lord, after that the ark had rest.
32 And they ministered before the dwelling place of the tabernacle of the congregation with singing, until Solomon had built the house of the Lord in Jerusalem: and then they waited on their office according to their order.

Mahli, the grandson of Levi through Merari, became the patriarch of Libni, Shimei, Uzza, Shimea, Haggiah, and Asaiah. These were the men of the Levites, who were assigned to be over the service of song in the tabernacle, once the ark was placed there. They served in front of the tabernacle of the congregation by singing. They did this until Solomon built the temple in Jerusalem, where they served according to the order of their office.

33 And these are they that waited with their children. Of the sons of the Kohathites: Heman a singer, the son of Joel, the son of Shemuel,
34 The son of Elkanah, the son of Jeroham, the son of Eliel, the son of Toah,
35 The son of Zuph, the son of Elkanah, the son of Mahath, the son of Amasai,
36 The son of Elkanah, the son of Joel, the son of Azariah, the son of Zephaniah,
37 The son of Tahath, the son of Assir, the son of Ebiasaph, the son of Korah,
38 The son of Izhar, the son of Kohath, the son of Levi, the son of Israel.
39 And his brother Asaph, who stood on his right hand, even Asaph the son of Berachiah, the
son of Shimea,
40 The son of Michael, the son of Baaseiah, the son of Malchiah,
41 The son of Ethni, the son of Zerah, the son of Adaiah,
42 The son of Ethan, the son of Zimmah, the son of Shimei,
43 The son of Jahath, the son of Gershom, the son of Levi.
44 And their brethren the sons of Merari stood on the left hand: Ethan the son of Kishi, the son of Abdi, the son of Malluch,
45 The son of Hashabiah, the son of Amaziah, the son of Hilkiah,
46 The son of Amzi, the son of Bani, the son of Shamer,
47 The son of Mahli, the son of Mushi, the son of Merari, the son of Levi.
48 Their brethren also the Levites were appointed unto all manner of service of the tabernacle of the house of God.

Those that waited with their children, were Heman, a singer of the Kohathites, his brother Asaph, who stood on his right hand, and the son of Merari, Ethan who stood on the left hand. They played the cymbals in David’s choir. (see 1 Chronicles 15) These were each descendants of Levi, the son of Israel. Heman’s descendancy included by parentage, Joel, Shemuel, Elkanah, Jeroham, Eliel, Toah, Zuph, Elkanah, Mahath, Amasai, Elkanah,Joel, Azariah, Zephaniah, Tahth, Assir, Ebiasaph, Korah (mentioned above), Izhar, Kohath (mentioned above), and then through Levi to Israel. Asaph’s descendancy included by parentage, Berachaih, Shimea, Michael, Baaseiah, Malchiah, Ethni, Zerah, Adaiah, Ethan, Zimmah, Shimei, Jahath, Gershom, Levi. Ethan’s descendancy included by parentage, Kishi, Abdi, Malluch, Hashabiah, Amaziah, Hilkiah, Amzi, Bani, Shamer,Mahli, Mushi, Merari (mentioned above), and also through Levi. The Levites were given all kinds of duties in and with the tabernacle.

49 But Aaron and his sons offered upon the altar of the burnt offering, and on the altar of incense, and were appointed for all the work of the place most holy, and to make an atonement for Israel, according to all that Moses the servant of God had commanded.
50 And these are the sons of Aaron; Eleazar his son, Phinehas his son, Abishua his son,
51 Bukki his son, Uzzi his son, Zerahiah his son,
52 Meraioth his son, Amariah his son, Ahitub his son,
53 Zadok his son, Ahimaaz his son.

Aaron, who was ordained a priest by Moses, and his line, were annointed and specifically given the duty of performing offerings on the altar of burnt offerings and the altar of incense, and the responsibilities of the holy of holies, and the making of atonement for Israel, just as they were directed by Moses, under the direction of the Lord. As mentioned above, the line with these duites consisted of the Aaron, along with his sons and grandsons: Eleazar, who became chief over the chiefs of the Levites, Phinehas, Abishua, Bukki, Uzzi, Zerahiah, Meraioth, Amariah, Ahitub, Zadok, and Ahimaaz. (There is more family to the line mentioned in verses 9-15 above. See also Exodus 28, Leviticus 8 and Numbers 3)

54 Now these are their dwelling places throughout their castles in their coasts, of the sons of Aaron, of the families of the Kohathites: for theirs was the lot.

The sons of Aaron of the Kohathites lived in these designated areas of the different tribes of Israel, which were given to them by lot.

55 And they gave them Hebron in the land of Judah, and the suburbs thereof round about it.
56 But the fields of the city, and the villages thereof, they gave to Caleb the son of Jephunneh.
57 And to the sons of Aaron they gave the cities of Judah, namely, Hebron, the city of refuge, and Libnah with her suburbs, and Jattir, and Eshtemoa, with their suburbs,
58 And Hilen with her suburbs, Debir with her suburbs,
59 And Ashan with her suburbs, and Beth-shemesh with her suburbs:
60 And out of the tribe of Benjamin; Geba with her suburbs, and Alemeth with her suburbs, and Anathoth with her suburbs. All their cities throughout their families were thirteen cities.

From Judah, they were given the cities of Hebron (which was well-known because of Abraham and later became the location for David’s original reign over Judah), the city of refuge, Libnah, Jattir, Eshtemoa, Hilen, Debir, Ashan and Beth-shemesh (once the location of the ark) with all the land and suburbs, except for the fields and villages of Hebron, which were given to Caleb, the son of Jephunneh. Then, from Benjamin, they were given Geba, Alemeth, and Anathoth, which included thirteen cities. (see also 2 Samuel 5 and 1 Samuel 6)

61 And unto the sons of Kohath, which were left of the family of that tribe, were cities given out of the half tribe, namely, out of the half tribe of Manasseh, by lot, ten cities.

The rest of the family of Kohath, were given ten cities by lot, from half of the tribe of Manasseh.

62 And to the sons of Gershom throughout their families out of the tribe of Issachar, and out of the tribe of Asher, and out of the tribe of Naphtali, and out of the tribe of Manasseh in Bashan, thirteen cities.

The family of Gershom, were given thirteen cities by lot, from Issachar, Asher, Naphtali and Manasseh.

63 Unto the sons of Merari were given by lot, throughout their families, out of the tribe of Reuben, and out of the tribe of Gad, and out of the tribe of Zebulun, twelve cities.

The family of Merari, were given twelve cities by lot, from the tribes of Reuben, Gad, and Zebulun.

64 And the children of Israel gave to the Levites these cities with their suburbs.
65 And they gave by lot out of the tribe of the children of Judah, and out of the tribe of the children of Simeon, and out of the tribe of the children of Benjamin, these cities, which are called by their names.
66 And the residue of the families of the sons of Kohath had cities of their coasts out of the tribe of Ephraim.
67 And they gave unto them, of the cities of refuge, Shechem in mount Ephraim with her suburbs; they gave also Gezer with her suburbs,
68 And Jokmeam with her suburbs, and Beth-horon with her suburbs,
69 And Aijalon with her suburbs, and Gath-rimmon with her suburbs:
70 And out of the half tribe of Manasseh; Aner with her suburbs, and Bileam with her suburbs, for the family of the remnant of the sons of Kohath.

All these cities and suburbs were given to the Levites. The tribes of Judah, Simeon, and Benjamin, gave cities by lot. The rest of the family of Kohath, was given cities in the border of Ephraim, including the cities of refuge and Shechem (a portion of mount Ephraim was given to Phinehas, the son of Eleazar). Shechem was an ancient town, mentioned when Abram (Abraham) first went to the promised land. (see Genesis 12) They also were given Gezer, Jokmean, Beth-horon (where the lord had brought a deadly hailstorm down upon the Amorites), Aijalon, and Gath-rimmon. Then from the half of Manasseh, they were given the city of Aner and Bileam. (see also Joshua 10)

71 Unto the sons of Gershom were given out of the family of the half tribe of Manasseh, Golan in Bashan with her suburbs, and Ashtaroth with her suburbs:
72 And out of the tribe of Issachar; Kedesh with her suburbs, Daberath with her suburbs,
73 And Ramoth with her suburbs, and Anem with her suburbs:
74 And out of the tribe of Asher; Mashal with her suburbs, and Abdon with her suburbs,
75 And Hukok with her suburbs, and Rehob with her suburbs:
76 And out of the tribe of Naphtali; Kedesh in Galilee with her suburbs, and Hammon with her suburbs, and Kirjathaim with her suburbs.

The sons of Gershom were also given cities from half of the tribe of Manasseh. They were Golan and Ashtaroth. From Issachar, they were given Kedesh, Daberath, Ramoth, and Anem. From Asher, they were given Mashal, Abdon, Hukok and Rehob. From Naphtali, they were given Kedesh in Galilee, Hammon, and Kirjathaim.

77 Unto the rest of the children of Merari were given out of the tribe of Zebulun, Rimmon with her suburbs, Tabor with her suburbs:
78 And on the other side Jordan by Jericho, on the east side of Jordan, were given them out of the tribe of Reuben, Bezer in the wilderness with her suburbs, and Jahzah with her suburbs,
79 Kedemoth also with her suburbs, and Mephaath with her suburbs:
80 And out of the tribe of Gad; Ramoth in Gilead with her suburbs, and Mahanaim with her suburbs,
81 And Heshbon with her suburbs, and Jazer with her suburbs.

The remainder of the family of Merari, were given the cities of Rimmon and Tabor from the tribe of Zebulon. From Rueben, on the Eastern side of the Jordan, they were given the cities of Bezer, Jahzah, Kedemoth, and Mephaath. From Gad, they were given Ramoth in Gilead (a very important Israelite city of refuge, where Ahab fought against Syria and died), Mahanaim, Heshbon and Jazer. (see also 1 Kings 22)

This chapter includes a record of the family who was responsible for the discharge of the duties relating to the tabernacle, and later to the temple of the Lord built by Solomon. Some did the work of the priesthood, while the remainder of the tribe of Levi, were called upon to serve the priests and care for the tabernacle. I think it would have been such a privilege to serve the Lord in this way. They were not perfect men, and they were not even all worthy to hold their office or do their duties, as seen in some of the stories of those who served the Israelites in the temple, but those who did their best to serve the Lord, would have had great opportunities in their work. I think that we can grow by leaps and bounds, when we are given ways or called to serve the Lord. (see more about the blessings of priesthood service in Doctrine and Covenants 84:18-34) Their lives were not the easiest of the tribes of Israel, especially seeing as they had no inheritance in the land, and were sustained by the tithes and some of the offerings given by the children of Israel. Additionally, because they were given cities out of all the other tribes, in which to live, they were spread out among all of Israel and never living gathered together the way each of the other tribes were gathered geographically. However, one of the significant blessings of the tribe of Levi, is that they had and continue to have an important role to play in the work of the Lord, all the way to the end the mortal world. In Doctrine and Covenants 13, the prophet Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were ordained to the priesthood. The words of the ordination were, “Upon you my fellow servants, in the name of Messiah I confer the Priesthood of Aaron, which holds the keys of the ministering of angels, and of the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; and this shall never be taken again from the earth, until the sons of Levi do offer again an offering unto the Lord in righteousness.” It is an honor and privilege to be ordained to the priesthood of Aaron, and those of the children of Levi who honored their priesthood or even those related duties done by those who served the priests, were surely blessed.

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The Fifth Article of Faith

As members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,

We believe that a man must be called of God, by prophecy, and by the laying on of hands by those who are in authority, to preach the Gospel and administer in the ordinances thereof.

We believe that all the callings in the church are received as callings from God. We do not lobby for positions and no one receives wages for the work they do as part of these callings. Callings are extended to us, to help us to learn and grow in the way that God intends for us. Those who act as leaders in the church, are instructed to follow the inspiration of the Spirit, in calling others to positions. When one is called to a position, they must be sustained or accepted by the membership of the church. In Doctrine and Covenants 20:65 we read, “No person is to be ordained to any office in this church, where there is a regularly organized branch of the same, without the vote of that church”. Even the prophet is sustained by the membership. We as a congregation, have the opportunity and I would add, obligation to make sure that this is what is right. I have wanted to know for sure that the prophet was truly called of God and meant to lead today. I prayed and fasted over the matter and I was blessed to receive a witness of the spirit that President Thomas S. Monson is truly the prophet, called of God, to lead and guide us today. When I was expected to raise my hand in a sustaining vote, I knew that it was right.

We believe that in order to be placed in a calling or a position in the church, a person must be set-apart. In Doctrine and Covenants 42:11 we read, “Again I say unto you, that it shall not be given to any one to go forth to preach my gospel, or to build up my church, except he be ordained by some one who has authority, and it is known to the church that he has authority and has been regularly ordained by the heads of the church.” In order to be a missionary for the LDS church, a man must be called and set-apart by the proper authority of God. In order for a man to perform baptisms, confirmations, blessings, sealings, and so on, he must also be set-apart by the proper authority of God. In order for a woman to teach a Sunday School class for teenagers, she must be set apart by the proper authority of God.

We believe in the priesthood. The priesthood is the power and authority to act in the name of Christ and by the power of God. In 3 Nephi 7:17 we read, “And he did minister many things unto them; and all of them cannot be written, and a part of them would not suffice, therefore they are not written in this book. And Nephi did minister with power and with great authority.” We believe that it is a right and responsibility, which a man may hold. This is not to say that a woman does not benefit from the power of the priesthood. That is actually quite the opposite. All people can benefit from the priesthood, but it is only men who may be given this power. A man does not receive the blessings of the priesthood he holds, without using it for the good of all those around him. We believe that it is through the use of this priesthood that callings are extended to the members of the church.

We believe that the priesthood can only be given to another, through the power of the priesthood. Men do not buy their right to the priesthood, and they cannot get it from any other source. This was how it was in the time of Adam, and it continues to be so today. We believe that during the great apostasy, there was no priesthood authority on the earth. We believe that the priesthood was restored to the prophet Joseph Smith, during the restoration of the gospel. In Doctrine and Covenants 110:16 we read, “Therefore, the keys of this dispensation are committed into your hands; and by this ye may know that the great and dreadful day of the Lord is near, even at the doors.” This is why we have the priesthood today. And this is why we are able to perform all the ordinances of the priesthood today. We also believe that the proper way that the priesthood is conferred upon men, is by the laying on of hands. This means that men who hold the priesthood will lay their hands on the head of the man receiving the priesthood, and ordain him to his specific office. In Doctrine and Covenants 107:67 we read, “From the same comes the administering of ordinances and blessings upon the church, by the laying on of the hands.” There is order in all of the works of God, and this is no different. There is a specific way that a man receives the priesthood because that is the way that it was established by God.

There is only one person on the earth, who holds all the keys of the priesthood, and that is the prophet of God. In the order of the priesthood, there are different offices. Each office holds the keys to administer in the specific responsibilities of that office. In Doctrine and Covenants 107 we read the following:

18 The power and authority of the higher, or Melchizedek Priesthood, is to hold the keys of all the spiritual blessings of the church— . . .
20 The power and authority of the lesser, or Aaronic Priesthood, is to hold the keys of the ministering of angels, and to administer in outward ordinances, the letter of the gospel, the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, agreeable to the covenants and commandments.

In my study of this, I liked an explanation given by Joseph F. Smith. He said to the men of the priesthood, “Your authority comes through your ordination; your power comes through obedience and worthiness”. The keys that a priesthood bearer holds, can only be used when they live a life worthy of the power of the priesthood. In Isaiah 52:11 the directions for those who hold the priesthood are these, “Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the Lord.” Those who hold the priesthood are responsible for keeping their lives in harmony with the teachings of the Lord, or they will not be able to use the power to do the work of God.

I am so grateful for the priesthood and the influence it has in my life. I have received great blessings through the laying on of hands and I cannot imagine my life without it. I am so glad that my husband is a worthy bearer of the holy priesthood. I find joy in knowing that God allows man to do His work on the earth, and that we have the opportunity to be baptized, confirmed with the Spirit, and participate in the ordinances in the temple because of the priesthood. I am also glad that I have been given callings throughout my life, because they help me to learn and grow to become more like my Savior.

D&C Section 107 (Part 2)

This is a continuation of a previous post (Section 107 Part 1)

In the first part of this section, the prophet received revelation about the organization of the priesthood. There are two offices of the priesthood, the Melchizedek and the Aaronic, but both are necessary to the fullness of the priesthood and both have specific important duties to fulfill. There are quorums in the priesthood organization, such as the First Presidency, the Twelve Apostles and the Seventies. Each quorum is given specific duties as well as far as duties in leading the church and bringing the gospel to all the world.

The section continues:

39 It is the duty of the Twelve, in all large branches of the church, to ordain evangelical ministers, as they shall be designated unto them by revelation—
40 The order of this priesthood was confirmed to be handed down from father to son, and rightly belongs to the literal descendants of the chosen seed, to whom the promises were made.
41 This order was instituted in the days of Adam, and came down by lineage in the following manner:
42 From Adam to Seth, who was ordained by Adam at the age of sixty-nine years, and was blessed by him three years previous to his (Adam’s) death, and received the promise of God by his father, that his posterity should be the chosen of the Lord, and that they should be preserved unto the end of the earth;
43 Because he (Seth) was a perfect man, and his likeness was the express likeness of his father, insomuch that he seemed to be like unto his father in all things, and could be distinguished from him only by his age.
44 Enos was ordained at the age of one hundred and thirty-four years and four months, by the hand of Adam.
45 God called upon Cainan in the wilderness in the fortieth year of his age; and he met Adam in journeying to the place Shedolamak. He was eighty-seven years old when he received his ordination.
46 Mahalaleel was four hundred and ninety-six years and seven days old when he was ordained by the hand of Adam, who also blessed him.
47 Jared was two hundred years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam, who also blessed him.
48 Enoch was twenty-five years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam; and he was sixty-five and Adam blessed him.
49 And he saw the Lord, and he walked with him, and was before his face continually; and he walked with God three hundred and sixty-five years, making him four hundred and thirty years old when he was translated.
50 Methuselah was one hundred years old when he was ordained under the hand of Adam.
51 Lamech was thirty-two years old when he was ordained under the hand of Seth.
52 Noah was ten years old when he was ordained under the hand of Methuselah.

In verse 39, we learn that the twelve that are called to a certain area, meaning the stake high priests today, are to call an evangelical minister. The footnote for this, references Doctrine and Covenants 124:91, which is the calling of Hyrum Smith to be a patriarch. A patriarch is called to give patriarchal blessings to the saints. The rest of this bit of the section is a record of the patriarchal order, which started when Adam was ordained by the Lord. The right of the priesthood is passed down to worthy males from their fathers. This patriarchal line went from Adam to Noah. In the old testament we have a record of this lineage, but I believe that the verses, in Genesis 4, only tell that it is the lineage, not that it is also the patriarchal order of the priesthood. According to the manual I am studying, it said that when we will live in the celestial kingdom, the patriarchal order will be the order of the government. I think that this means that the patriarchs will rule in order the kingdom.

53 Three years previous to the death of Adam, he called Seth, Enos, Cainan, Mahalaleel, Jared, Enoch, and Methuselah, who were all high priests, with the residue of his posterity who were righteous, into the valley of Adam-ondi-Ahman, and there bestowed upon them his last blessing.
54 And the Lord appeared unto them, and they rose up and blessed Adam, and called him Michael, the prince, the archangel.
55 And the Lord administered comfort unto Adam, and said unto him: I have set thee to be at the head; a multitude of nations shall come of thee, and thou art a prince over them forever.
56 And Adam stood up in the midst of the congregation; and, notwithstanding he was bowed down with age, being full of the Holy Ghost, predicted whatsoever should befall his posterity unto the latest generation.
57 These things were all written in the book of Enoch, and are to be testified of in due time.

Adam gathered the high priests of his lineage and those who were living righteously, to bless them. I imagine that he knew he was getting close to leaving his life on this earth, and that he wanted to give a parting blessing to his family. Then the Lord appeared to them, blessed Adam and through the gift of the Holy Ghost, they all were blessed by revelations from Adam. I am sure that this was an amazing experience for these men, which gave them the strength and knowledge to lead generations after Adam had died.

58 It is the duty of the Twelve, also, to ordain and set in order all the other officers of the church, agreeable to the revelation which says:
59 To the church of Christ in the land of Zion, in addition to the church laws respecting church business—
60 Verily, I say unto you, saith the Lord of Hosts, there must needs be presiding elders to preside over those who are of the office of an elder;
61 And also priests to preside over those who are of the office of a priest;
62 And also teachers to preside over those who are of the office of a teacher, in like manner, and also the deacons—
63 Wherefore, from deacon to teacher, and from teacher to priest, and from priest to elder, severally as they are appointed, according to the covenants and commandments of the church.
64 Then comes the High Priesthood, which is the greatest of all.
65 Wherefore, it must needs be that one be appointed of the High Priesthood to preside over the priesthood, and he shall be called President of the High Priesthood of the Church;
66 Or, in other words, the Presiding High Priest over the High Priesthood of the Church.
67 From the same comes the administering of ordinances and blessings upon the church, by the laying on of the hands.

The Twelve were instructed here, to set all other officers of the Church in order. They were to assign members of each office and quorum of the priesthood, to preside over that office or quorum, so that the church would have order. All of this was to be done by revelation from the Holy Ghost. I am really glad that the Lord has set an order to the leaders of His church. I am an organized and ordered person by nature and it gives me a sense of security to know that things of God are set in order as well, so that there will be no confusion about how His church should be organized. I feel that these revelations are such a blessing to the world.

This section will be continued.

D&C Section 76 (Part 3)

This is a continuation of a previous post (D&C Section 76 Part 2).

This section was recieved by the prophet, Joseph Smith, and Sidney Rigdon, in a vision. It is regarding some of the truths that were taken from the translation of the Bible. It is a revelation that teaches us about the nature of heaven and the exaltation of men. These truths came after they had been pondering over the translations they had done. There were others who witnessed them receiving this vision and have testified to the glory that was with them when it was received. In this vision, we have learned about the fall of Lucifer and the state of sons of Perdition (see previous post).

How Might Anyone “Crucify” the Only Begotten Son of the Father and “Put Him to an Open Shame”?

“Having denied the Holy Spirit after having received it, and having denied the Only Begotten Son of the Father, having crucified him unto themselves and put him to an open shame (v. 35).” If a person accepts the gospel and gains a knowledge of the Savior through the gift of the Holy Ghost, then openly rebells against that knowledge, they may become a son of perdition. If they take on the feelings of one who would have crucified the Savior in his time, they crucify Him in their hearts and put Him to shame. If a person openly shames the prophets, they also shame the Lord, because they represent the Lord on the earth today.

What Is the Second Death? Will Those born into Mortality Who Become Sons of Perdition Receive a Resurrection?

“These are they who shall go away into the lake of fire and brimstone, with the devil and his angels (v. 36)—And the only ones on whom the second death shall have any power (v. 37); Yea, verily, the only ones who shall not be redeemed in the due time of the Lord, after the sufferings of his wrath (v. 38 ). For all the rest shall be brought forth by the resurrection of the dead, through the triumph and the glory of the Lamb, who was slain, who was in the bosom of the Father before the worlds were made (v. 39).” The first death comes to all people and is the physical death. We all will overcome the first death through the resurrection, because of the Savior’s resurrection. The second death is spiritual death, which will come to all who are not worthy to be in the presence of God. Each person will be able to overcome this second death and be made perfect through the mercy of Jesus Christ, but the sons of perdition will remain separated from God and all that is righteous, for eternity.

“This Is the Gospel”

“And this is the gospel, the glad tidings, which the voice out of the heavens bore record unto us (v. 40)—That he came into the world, even Jesus, to be crucified for the world, and to bear the sins of the world, and to sanctify the world, and to cleanse it from all unrighteousness (v. 41); That through him all might be saved whom the Father had put into his power and made by him (v. 42); Who glorifies the Father, and saves all the works of his hands, except those sons of perdition who deny the Son after the Father has revealed him (v. 43).”

The gospel, or glad tidings, that we learn in the section, is that our Savior, Jesus Christ, has made it possible for all of us to be sanctified and cleansed. Jesus Christ has given us all the chance to be saved from our own sins and the eternal consequences that they bring upon us. Everyone has this chance, except for those who have denied the knowledge of the Savior that has been impressed upon their souls.

It Is Futile to Discuss the Fate of Sons of Perdition

“Wherefore, he saves all except them—they shall go away into everlasting punishment, which is endless punishment, which is eternal punishment, to reign with the devil and his angels in eternity, where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched, which is their torment (v. 44)—And the end thereof, neither the place thereof, nor their torment, no man knows (v. 45); Neither was it revealed, neither is, neither will be revealed unto man, except to them who are made partakers thereof (v. 46); Nevertheless, I, the Lord, show it by vision unto many, but straightway shut it up again (v. 47); Wherefore, the end, the width, the height, the depth, and the misery thereof, they understand not, neither any man except those who are ordained unto this condemnation (v. 48 ). And we heard the voice, saying: Write the vision, for lo, this is the end of the vision of the sufferings of the ungodly (v. 49).”

There is no reason to focus on the fate of those who will suffer for eternity. Our goal in this life is to gain everlasting life and to return to be with God again, so why should we focus our attention on the thing that is the complete opposite of our goal. Anyone who tries to teach about the fate of the sons of perdition, is not teaching anything that has been revealed because that is not known to any person and will never be revealed. We are taught how one becomes a son of perdition, so that we can do all that is in our power to stay away from that path and I imagine to help others who may be headed in that direction. But that is where our understanding must end.

How Can the Sons of Perdition “Reign” in Eternity?

In verse 44 it says the sons of perdition will “reign with the devil and his angels in eternity”. On one side, the saints will reign in the kingdom of God, while on the other side, the sons of perdition will reign in the kingdom of the Devil. In the kingdom of God, all things are righteous or good, where in the kingdom of the Devil all things are unrighteous or evil.

Are the Sons of Perdition “Ordained” to Be Such?

In verse 48 it says that the conditions of where the Sons of Perdition will go after this life is not understood by any “except those who are ordained unto this condemnation”. Any who live a life worthy of earning that reward, is ordained by God to receive it. They are not, however, foreordained to it. No person who chose to follow the Savior in the premortal existence, is foreordained to that condemnation. Only those who chose to follow Satan in the premortal existence, were ordained to that before life began on this earth. There is no destiny that sets any mortal person to becoming a son of perdition.

(This section will be continued.)

D&C Section 13

Historical Background

At the time when the prophet Joseph Smith experienced his first vision and so on, the world was still in the time of apostasy. When Jesus was on the earth he taught his disciples many things. In Matthew 17:11-13 we read, “And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things (v. 11). But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them (v. 12). Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist (v. 13).” Elias was John the Baptist and the Savior told them he would restore all things. John the Baptist came to Joseph and Olivery Cowdery to restore the keys of the Aaronic Priesthood.

Why Is the Lesser Priesthood Called the “Priesthood of Aaron”?

“UPON you my fellow servants, in the name of Messiah I confer the Priesthood of Aaron, which holds the keys of the ministering of angels, and of the gospel of repentance, and of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins; and this shall never be taken again from the earth, until the sons of Levi do offer again an offering unto the Lord in righteousness (v. 1).”

In D&C 107:13-14 we read, “The second priesthood is called the Priesthood of Aaron, because it was conferred upon Aaron and his seed, throughout all their generations (v. 13). Why it is called the lesser priesthood is because it is an appendage to the greater, or the Melchizedek Priesthood, and has power in administering outward ordinances (v. 14).” Then in D&C 84:26-27 we read, “And the lesser priesthood continued, which priesthood holdeth the key of the ministering of angels and the preparatory gospel (v. 26); Which gospel is the gospel of repentance and of baptism, and the remission of sins, and the law of carnal commandments, which the Lord in his wrath caused to continue with the house of Aaron among the children of Israel until John, whom God raised up, being filled with the Holy Ghost from his mother’s womb (v. 27).” This priesthood prepares us for the gospel of the Melchizedek Priesthood. It is called the Priesthood of Aaron because it given to Aaron and his posterity.

The Ministering of Angels to Bearers of the Aaronic Priesthood

One of the keys of the Aaronic Priesthood is that of ministering angels. In the manual I am using to study, it quotes Wilford Woodruff. “I had the administration of angels while holding the office of a priest. I had visions and revelations. I traveled thousands of miles. I baptized men, though I could not confirm them because I had not the authority to do it.” (Discourses of Wilford Woodruff, p. 298.)

“This Shall Never Be Taken Again from the Earth”

We are promised that this priesthood will not be taken again until an offering of righteousness is given by the sons of Levi. I believe that we will continue to have the priesthood from here on out, because we are in the final dispensation of the gospel.

Who Are the “Sons of Levi”?

In Exodus, we learn that Moses was commanded by God to ordain Aaron and his sons priests. “And take thou unto thee Aaron thy brother, and his sons with him, from among the children of Israel, that he may minister unto me in the priest’s office . . . (Exodus 28:1).” The tribe of Levi was chosen to be priests. It became known as the Levitical priesthood. The sons of Levi are all those who are ordained and worthy to perform duties in the temples of the Lord.

What Is Meant by the Sons of Levi Offering an Offering of Righteousness unto the Lord?

I understand that the sons of Levi were given tasks in the tabernacle. “Their brethren also the Levites were appointed unto all manner of service of the tabernacle of the house of God (1 Chr. 6:48).” In the law of Moses, they were to give offerings to the Lord in the form of sacrifices. We no longer give the types of sacrifices they did then, because the Savior gave Himself as a sacrifice. However, we do give a personal sacrifice of our time and energy to the Lord’s work instead. Temple work is part of the offering of righteousness mentioned in this verse.


About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.
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