Opening the Heavens: Accounts of Divine Manifestations, 1820-1844 Ed. by John W. Welch
Precept Upon Precept: Joseph Smith and the Restoration of Doctrine by Robert L. Millet
The Doctrine and Covenants Made Harder by James E. Faulconer
D&C lesson 8—The Priesthood
What would Joseph and Oliver have read in the Book of Mormon concerning priesthood and priesthood authority?
2 Nephi 5:26
3 Nephi 11:21-22
Read Oliver Cowdery Quote
Numbers 18 spells out the responsibilities of the Aaronic Priesthood anciently:
vs 1-5-They are to bear the sin of Israel and prevent others from getting too close to the tabernacle and its holy vessels—Sacrament
vs 6-7—As priesthood bearers they are a gift to Israel, and they should understand their priesthood service as a gift they give to Israel. Compare to Aaronic priesthood responsibilities now—D&C 20:46-59 How is priesthood service a gift? What does authority mean when we think of it in those terms?
vs 20-21 The Lord says that Aaron is in charge of the holy sacrifices and should depend on the Lord for his inheritance. How might priesthood bearers today understand the instruction to depend on the Lord for their inheritance?
What is the ministering of angels? What does it mean to hold the KEYS to the ministering of angels?
Keys to the Ministry of angels: Joseph Smith “All Priesthood is Melchizedek but there are different portions or degrees of it. That portion which brough Moses to speak with God face to face was taken away; but that which brought the ministry of angels remained…All the prophets had the Melchizedek Priesthood and were ordained by God himself”
D&C 107:14—To what does the phrase “outward ordinances” refer? Does this imply that there are “inward ordinances?” Why is the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost not an outward ordinance, while baptism is?
It has been said by them of old time…Matt 5:21-46—How many of the ten commandments does Christ change to a higher, inner law?
JST Genesis 14
D&C 84:14, 17
What does it mean to say that the Melchizedek Priesthood administers the gospel and How does that differ from the responsibility of the Aaronic Priesthood?
What does it mean to say that the greater priesthood holds the key to the mysteries of the kingdom? In what sense does it hold that key? What do you make of the fact that this verse makes “mysteries of the kingdom” and “knowledge of God” equivalent? Are we to understand “knowledge of God” to mean “God’s knowledge” or our “knowledge of him
From Andrew Skinner’s talk:
When you . . . see our Father, you will see a being with whom you have long been acquainted, and He will receive you into His arms, and you will be ready to fall into His embrace and kiss Him. . . . You will be so glad and joyful. . . . When you are qualified and purified, . . . you can endure the glory of eternity. [JD 4:54–55]
The Prophet Joseph Smith said: “It is the first principle of the Gospel to know for a certainty the Character of God” (Teachings, 345). In other words, one of the foundation stones of the restored gospel is a knowledge of what kind of being God actually is. But not only do we need to understand what kind of being God is, we must come to know God. In the same sermon from which we just quoted, the Prophet Joseph further stated, “If any man does not know God, . . . he will realize that he has not eternal life; for there can be eternal life on no other principle” (Teachings, 344). In His great high-priestly or Intercessory Prayer, the Savior confirmed that life eternal was to “know . . . the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom [the Father] hast sent” (John 17:3).
Thus everything of sacred significance connected with our future rests on both our coming to know about God the Eternal Father and, ultimately, our coming to know Him. “If men do not comprehend the character of God,” said Joseph Smith, “they do not comprehend themselves” (Teachings, 343). God and men are of the same divine, eternal species, and if we do not comprehend the nature of God, we cannot appreciate our divine parentage nor the very real potential we possess to become like our heavenly parents.
Verse 20—How do the ordinances of the gospel manifest the power of godliness?
Is the “power of godliness” different from “the power of God”? If so, how? Can you explain specifically how, say, baptism manifest the power of godliness?
What do we have to sacrifice for godliness?
Verse 21: What does it mean to say that without the ordinances, which are only possible through the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh”? What is it about godliness that it cannot be manifest without the ordinances?