God's Priesthood and Man's Responsibility

one member's perspective by Don R. Hender

"God Makes the Rules."
"It Is Up to Man to Follow Them."
~ drh ~

"But in vain they do worship me,
teaching for doctrines the commandments of men."
~ Matthew 15:9 ~

     Much has been said concerning the Priesthood of God. Too often the fact of just Who's Priesthood it is, is the last and least thing considered by complaining people and even the 'heads' of chruches who order 'their' priesthood according to the opinions of their congregations. If God is an unchangable God, then why do people think they can 'lobby' God to change? To Change His Laws, Commandments and Priesthood, think they that it is they who tells God what to do? In truth they really must not think their Church is God's true church, to think that just on their own personal whims, God will change the doctrines of the church just to suit them. They must think that God is running a 'flavor of the month church.' That is if they don't like the doctrine, just have the church leaders change it to suit 'them' no matter what God had established.

Now, first things first. I am not a General Authority of the LDS Church, little alone its Prophet speaking for God. I am but who I am, trying to make sense of things to myself. On that basis I speak. Many critics of another's religions will take what any member of the religion will say and hold that against the religion, ignoring that that is just a personal opinion of the one who speaks is not even an 'official of position' of the faith they are attacking. Of such I can only consider that they are able only to build themselves up upon the false foundation of tearing others down. If they cannot build themselves up based solely upon that which is true and good about their own religion, without attacking the faith of others, I feel sorry for them and what must be their own religion that is so totally lacking.

Also, in such matters of the opinions of such individual members of a church being used to so judge the who of that religion, it does seem to me that people like to place a lot of responsibility on just regular members to explain such things concenring that which is but the business of God. That is, don't ask me to justify and explain the stand and action of God in a matter, and condemn me for what God and his position is and what God's prophets do, or even have or have not done when acting in God's name. Millions and millions of people of every national group on earth have lived and died without ever hearing the Gospel of Jesus Christ or receiving its blessings in their lifetime. And because I am a Christian, I have to justify that? You are going to make me an apologist for God? And then you are going to further condemn me if you don't like my reasoning and 'opinion' is, and that because it doesn't make sense to you? And you are going to fault me for still being a faith believing Christian?

Many a Christian religions holds requirements of their membership, which they are to fulfill to obtain God's Kingdom. And sadly for the most part it is literally 'to hell' for any other who has ever lived who has not been fortunate enough to have found that person's church and religion. For example, Rick Santorum is a Catholic. His religion condemns little children and babies who have not been properly baptized in the Catholic faith. All those millions of children are to never enter God's Kingdon of no fault of their own. And only a person who is baptized Catholic in their own lifetime may go to God's Kingdom. Everybody else are but lost souls. Oh what inefficiency that the vast majority of the millions upon millions of persons, innocent babies and children included, who have not been 'blessed' to be Catholic and blessed by the baptism and sacraments of the Catholic Church; they are forever lost according to the doctrine of the Catholic faith. That is everyone else who has ever lived or ever will live, who has never been a member of the Catholic church, they can not go to Heaven. Why Rick, Why? Or is it fair to require of Rick Santorum to justify and apologize for the doctrines of the Catholic Church and of the Pope, God's 'mouth piece' to the Catholic faith? I do not think it fair to hold Rick Santorum so responsible to speak to answer that question. It is just that, that is the doctrine of the Catholic Church and either you believe it or you don't. If you don't then you're really not Catholic, are you?

One might ask Rick Santorum the question, 'Do you hate the people of the world? Do you hate and descriminate against everybody else? Do you think you are better than every one else just because you are Catholic and they are not? And do you think God loves you and hates everyone else who is not Catholic, and that God would not allow them into heaven just because they are not a member of your Catholic Church? I don't think Rick Santorum as a lay member of that Church is responsible to answer for his 'Catholic God's position' on that matter. He is not qualified to do so. If any were to give an answer it would have to be such as the Pope. And even the Pope might respond that this is God's doing and not his, and he as the Pope is only following the principles of God's Catholic religion.

Many take it upon themselves to attack me as a member of the LDS faith for what the Church 'offically believes' as doctrine. Many attack those of the LDS faith concerning their own personally derived opinions relative to the LDS Chruch whether that is the Chruch's offical stand or not, without ever considering the truth of just what that official doctrine of the Church is or is not. They just want to attack somebody without knowing the true facts. Even if a high official of the Church has stated his opinion, that still is not necessarily what the offical doctrine of the LDS Church is. Many complain against the LDS faith that only those who are 'baptized Mormon' can enter into the Kingdom of God.

Jesus taught that except a person is baptized they cannot enter into the kingdom of God (John 3). So also many others teach such concepts as well, as does the Catholic Chruch which I have used as an example. And yet while these other religions hold out that their 'exclusive baptism' and 'sacraments' are the only true means to heaven, why is the LDS faith condemned of them?

At least my LDS church is providing a way and means for everyone who ever has or ever will live, the opportunity for all of God's blessings. What is the Catholic elite and those others of such faiths and religions going to be doing in the Millennium? Are they going to be mocking the majority of God's children because they did not happen to be baptized Catholic or even ever hear of such during their earthly lifetime? During that thousand years when my Church's 'Mormon' temples will being operating day and night to ensure that all have the every opportunity for such Christian blessings of the Kingdom of God as the ordinances of the Gospel of Jesus Christ will be performed for all vicariously and it will be up to them to accept or reject them according to the agency of their own actions of acceptance or rejecion of such. That's how big the Mormon Christianity is. It provides a means and a way for all to be baptized unto Christ, not just those who were so baptized in their limited lifetime on earth as such ordinances are beformed by proxy for the dead to the end that they might be claimed by Christ's universal salvation and the Plan of God. And the LDS faith does not condemn innocent babies and children if they haven't been sprinkled Catholic or baptized by some other church before their deaths.
Who follows the admonition of Christ? 'Blessed are the little children, for thus is the Kingdom of God.' And this because the LDS faith believes that the innocent who have not the capacity for the understanding of accountability are alive in Christ because of the innocence and lack of accountibility irrespective of formal baptism.

There is a statement of the LDS faith's consideration of the blessing of Christ's Gospel being made available to the whole of mankind. Certainly the bottom line of it is that God loves and provides for all who have ever lived and provides for them those same opportunities and blessings of His Kingdom, whether they be the first or the last. At that last day of days, all will stand before God having had either sooner or later that same opportunity to enter into God's Kingdom and glory. And if they don't, it won't be because they lived in China some hundreds of years before Jesus's birth and had never heard of Christianity in their life time. All who have lived upon this earth will be able to come unto Christ, even the dead being able to justly be judged of God as and according to those living who had the Gospel ordinances performed for them by themselves in their own life time. And this by the power of God's priesthood power being able to reach beyond the grave to unlock the prison doors by the performance of the Gospel Ordinances in behalf of the dead by the living, the bulk of such work to be done in that thousand years of Millennial Christian labor of love that all might come unto God.

Now what concerning God's Priesthood and power? The Priesthood of God is that power of God, which God has given unto men that they may act for God in God's name to the end of God's purposes, his work and his glory, to bring to pass the eternal life and immortality of all men. That is the great Millennial power unto life and unto all those that they might enter into the Kingdom of God. Anciently only those worthy of it were given that priesthood, which was of a patriarchal order from the time of Adam. In the days of Moses, God, not Moses, did but limit the operations and responsibilities of the priesthood to but one tribe of Israel, the tribe of Levi. Not only all nations of people, but also all other tribes of Israel but Levi could not hold that priesthood as did the sons and posterity of Aaron of Levi so held it. Everyone else was excluded by God. I'd hate to have to be an apoligest for God to all who were 'discriminated' against because of that policy of God of the Hebrew era.

Priesthood, the power to act in God's name, is a 'responsibility' to perform God's work. Father Abraham was blessed by the priesthood covenant of God that through his 'seed' all the earth, every nation, kindred, tongue and people would be blessed. That covenant of responsibility to so act in God's name to bless all who ever had or would live upon the earth fell upon Abraham and his 'covenant' descendants. From Abraham to Isaac, from Isaac to Jacob, from Jacob to Joseph, and from Joseph to Ephraim did that covenant of responsibility fall. And the priesthood of the LDS Church today is made up of Ephraim and 'his companions,' who have taken upon themselves that very 'responsibility' to take the blessings of the Kingdom of God to all the world, both to the living and to the dead that the Covenant of Abraham might be fulfilled of the blessing of the nations of the earth. And they do it such as God has commanded them

It is God's Priesthood and Power and it is God Who governs it. It was first restored to Joseph Smith who was a 'pure Ephraimite' as so stated by the prophet Brigham Young. In taking the priesthood blessing to the world it was and is first the responsibility of the tribe of Ephraim to so take those blessings to the people of the earth according to God's direction and commandments of God by and through that priesthood power. The Priesthood of God is not about 'ME' and 'MINE' and 'MY' rights to it. It is a 'responsibility' which God bestows upon certain of his children to be used for and in the behalf of all of God's children who ever have lived. All will be blessed by it and receive of God's blessing whether sooner or later. And today it is Ephraim and his companions who do hold that priesthood and who are acting in the name of God to the bring of those blessings to those of the earth, both living and dead. And they will continue to do this until every knee will bow/kneel and every tongue confess that Jesus is the Christ, and thus every one will be blessed through Christ, living and dead.

And so they will all receive of God's blessings for them equally, whether it be first or last according to God's Plan and order, that eventually all will have the right and opportunity to receive and partake if they are willing to come unto God, live his law and commandments, and partake of his blessings. It will be up to them but will they do so?

Just why, for a time the restored church of Jesus Christ was first restored primarily to a white European English nation of the seed of Ephraim, I can only suggest a guess, that it was because it was the tribe of Ephraim's responsibility to so go forth first to fulfill the Covenant of Abraham. As to why those of African descent were delayed, I don't know. I do understand that it was of primarily needed for it to come to Ephraim first. As to the other, that matter was and is and will ever so be in the hands of God. I make no apology for God's timing of events, I do not apologize for God. Is this the 'official Mormon doctrine' of the matter? I don't know, as first stated I not God's Prophet who presides at the head of the Church. And I do not speak for God. I have only attempted to understand the matter in a way that today, does make sense to me.

And as to why women do not hold priesthood offices, I do not apologize for God's commandments and directions. Neither do I question them. In reasoning, it is God's Priesthood and 'HE' will state who is to receive his office to minister the priesthood blessings unto they would are worthy in doing the will of God according to his laws, ordinances and commandments. To me it makes sense that to act in the stead of God, he being male, it would be one of God's sons that would act for Him. The blessings of the priesthood are unto all people. All may be baptized and become members of God's chruch. Those are such as the 'blessings' of the matter. And all will eventually come to recieve of those blessings of the priesthood. As to upon whom God has placed the responsibility to officiate in leading his people and who are those who officiate in bestowing his ordinances, that the blessings in the Name of God come upon man, I can understand that for 'HIS' mouth piece through whom 'HE' speaks to be a male like 'HE' is makes sense to me. Beyond that I don't have to know exactly why but that God has established it to be that way. And who am I to question God, and to tell God what to do? Who am I to tell God to change just because I don't happen to agree with 'HIM?'

    " Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
    "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
    "And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity."
    ~ New Testament | Matthew 7:21-23

rev. 18 February 2016