Mormonism and priesthood/What does the Bible teach

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    What does the Bible teach about priesthood in the Church of Jesus Christ?

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Early Christianity &
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Apostasy


Authority: and Priesthood


Doctrinal shift:

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QUESTIONS


What does the Bible teach about priesthood in the Church of Jesus Christ?

CONCLUSION


There is much more about the priesthood that is contained in the scriptures. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints observes all the Biblical principles taught about priesthood, including:

  1. That the Priesthood is the authority for man to act in God's name.
  2. The priesthood is given directly from God, though Jesus Christ.
  3. That Christ was not the only one to have the higher priesthood.
  4. Christ ordained the 12 Apostles with the priesthood.
  5. The Apostles ordained others with the priesthood.
  6. The church is identified as having the priesthood.
  7. The priesthood is necessary to act in God's name.

DETAILED QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

Note: for the claim that Jesus' priesthood is "non-transferrable," see: Priesthood non-transferable.

Jesus Christ establishes His Church

When Christ was on the earth during His mortal ministry, He set up a specific organization (called the Church).

Does it make sense that if Jesus Christ organized a Church, that the true Church would have the same positions today? What are some of the offices or positions in the church Christ established?

For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus. (1 Timothy 3:13)(emphasis added)
Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:(James 5:14)(emphasis added)
11 And he [Jesus Christ] gave some, apostles; (12) and some, prophets; (Ephesians 4:11)

(12 Apostles collectively, and the one leading the church with his counselors -- Peter, James, and John)

and some, evangelists; [i.e., Patriarchs in the modern LDS Church] and some, pastors [i.e., Bishops, Stake Presidents in the modern Church] and teachers;

("Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect." Matthew 5:48)

  • of the saints

(the members of the Church -- interesting that they are called Saints, just as we are called Latter-day Saints today.),

  • for the work of the ministry

(The administration and performing the ordinances of the Church),

  • for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith (Ephesians 4:13)

(Even though all Christians claim to believe in Christ, and the Bible, there certainly is no unity of faith or doctrine, therefore these offices are still needed.)

  • and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

(unto a perfect man—NOT some incomprehensible being as the creeds declare.)

  • 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine (Ephesians 4:14)

(The creeds came by councils of men, not a singular pronouncement of revelation by a prophet of God, as all other scripturally based doctrines are. The creeds directly contradict scripture. The creeds are not declared to be scripture. The creeds have not been declared to have been given by revelation. The creeds came about by political power struggles. Hence, the creeds are a wind of doctrine.),

  • by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; (Ephesians 4:14)
  • But speaking the truth in love, may grow up unto him in all things, which is the head, even Jesus Christ: (Ephesians 4:15)

(Without prophets who are regularly receiving inspired direction from the Lord, the church will be led by men and not by Jesus Christ)

Priesthood authority from God

So how can we tell true teachers? First, they will have authority (priesthood) directly from God. Christ was given the priesthood authority from God the Father.

For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son

to have life in himself; 27 And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man. (John 5:26-27.)

The works that Christ performed were by this priesthood authority:

And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him. (Mark 1:27)

Christ passed on this very same authority to His apostles.

1 THEN he called his twelve disciples together, and gave them power and authority over all devils, and to cure diseases. 2 And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick. (Luke 9:1-2)(emphasis added)

This authority is necessary in order to preach the gospel.

And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach (Mark 3:14) (emphasis added)
Beginning from the baptism of John, unto that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection. (Acts 1:22)(emphasis added)
Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity. (1 Timothy 2:7)

The apostles ordained others with this authority:

For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee...(Titus 1:5) (emphasis added)

And when they had ordained them elders in every church, and had prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord, on whom they believed.(Acts 14:23)(emphasis added)

This authority was passed directly from God the Father, to Jesus Christ, to the Apostles, to the Elders, and to others. It was a priesthood which any worthy man could have, if called. It was also necessary for the establishment of the Church. Christ left this priesthood authority on he earth when He left, so that the Church could still function.

For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.(Mark 13:34) (emphasis added)

In fact, the church would be known as the true church because of the priesthood, for so the church is described in scripture.

This priesthood authority is sacred and cannot be bought.

18 And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles' hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, 19 Saying, Give me also this power, that on whomsoever I lay hands, he

may receive the Holy Ghost. 20 But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.(Acts 8:18-20)

We cannot choose this priesthood authority for ourselves.

Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.(John 15:16)

How to obtain the priesthood

As shown above, you can't buy it, you can't take it upon yourself, and you can't choose for yourself to have it. So how can we obtain the priesthood?

And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron. (Hebrews 5:4)

How was Aaron called? He was called by Moses—as God instructed Moses—in other words, Aaron did not decide to accept this for himself, but was called by Moses, who was instructed by the Lord, who has authority over him.

13 And thou shalt put upon Aaron the holy garments, and anoint him, and sanctify him; that he may minister unto me in the priest's office. 14 And thou shalt bring his sons, and clothe them with coats: 15 And thou shalt anoint them, as thou didst anoint their father, that they may minister unto me in the priest's office: for their anointing shall surely be an everlasting priesthood throughout their generations. 16 Thus did Moses: according to all that the LORD commanded him, so did he. (Exodus 40:13-16)

From whence comes your authority?

Finally, the question must be asked of anyone who claims to preach the gospel and proclaim its doctrines, where do you get your authority to speak and act in the name of God? Many people claim that they receive their authority from the Bible. However, that cannot be, for the Bible has no priesthood authority, it is a book and cannot perform any ordinance, it cannot choose you as it cannot make decisions, nor can it ordain you as it can not perform any actions. Seminaries and Universities have no priesthood authority, for their purpose is to grant educational degrees, whose requirements are developed and designed by men. Priesthood Authority comes only from God.

LET every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.{Romans 13:1)

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