SPIRITUAL COVENANT WITH ABRAHAM

Did you know that only the seed of Abraham are acceptable before God? Both Jew and Gentile must obey the same laws of God to become worthy to inherit salvation in the Kingdom of God. What preacher among the sectarian Christian church has advised that all must be of the seed of Abraham? [Below] “We will now show that the ‘spiritual covenant’ is extended to all the families of the earth [in the flesh and in the spirit], and that the same acts are requisite to constitute the literal seed of Abraham, spiritual Israel, that are required to make a gentile a spiritual Israelite.”

All must obey the everlasting [spiritual] covenant. Only those who have known and worshipped the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; and obeyed the gospel of Christ and the laws of God have a right to the Kingdom of God. “33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Jesus, Matt. 6) Only those who have been called of God by revelation to the Melchisedec Priesthood have authority from God to administer all the saving ordinances of the gospel. When Jesus restored the Melchisedec Priesthood in His day, He called all of the officers of the Melchisedec Priesthood to administer the saving ordinances of the gospel.  “11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists [high priests]; and some, pastors [elders] and teachers; 12 FOR the perfecting of the saints, FOR the work of the ministry, FOR the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” (Eph. 4) “27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” (Gal. 3)

“13 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and FEW [not millions] there be that find it.” (Jesus, Matt. 7) The gate into the Kingdom of God is through that priesthood called by God. “4 And no man taketh this honour [of the priesthood] unto himself [or by man], but he that is called of God, as was Aaron [by the spirit of revelation]. 5 So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he [the Father] that said unto him, Thou art my Son, today have I begotten thee.” (Heb. 5)

James J. Strang was appointed by the latter day prophet Joseph Smith and ordained under the hands of angels [according to the law of God] the same hour–on June 27, 1844–that Joseph was martyred; although some 400 miles distant. The prophet James called and ordained L. D. Hickey one of the twelve Apostles. Hickey ordained Samuel Martin a high priest, who ordained Lloyd Flanders a high priest, who–on July 8, 1956–ordained Samuel E. West an elder. There has been several called of God and ordained under my hands. John Hajicek is also an elder called of God. The gate into the Kingdom of God is still open. No one can underestimate the importance of entering the Kingdom of God in mortal life. Only these will come forth in the first resurrection and live with Jesus and all saints of God for the thousand year Sabbath of Creation—the Millennium.

TREATISE ON

THE SPIRITUAL COVENANT
MADE WITH ABRAHAM.

 BY, JOHN E. PAGE

 THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER DAY SAINTS
(Known as Strangites)

 Originally Printed and Published in Voree, Wisconsin

 Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 21, p. 85/137
Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 22, p. 89/141
Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 23, p. 94/145
Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 25, p. 101/153
Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 26, p. 105/157
Gospel Herald, Vol. 2, No. 27 &28, p. 109/161
Gospel Herald, Vol. 2, No. 29, p. 117/169

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Tim. 2:15)

 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever.” (2 Peter 3:18)

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page:

4   The Priesthood.
5   The Priesthood (continued).
7   The Highest Degree or Most Holy Priesthood.
8   Priesthood of Judges and Prophets.
9   Priesthood Taken Away With Moses.
10   Restoration of the Melchisedec Priesthood.
11   Name Implies Priesthood.
11   Priesthood In The Apostolic Church.
13   False Priesthood.
13   Succession In Priesthood of the Apostolic Church.
14   Immutability of the Gospel Priesthood.
1
6   Priesthood of Modern Christendom.
16   Conclusion.

(Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 21, p. 85/137)

In the 15th, 19th and 20th Nos. of “Zion’s Reveille” we have treated at length on the subject of the “temporal covenant” made to Abraham by Almighty God, in reply to “A Pedo Baptist” of Pittsburgh, in 1842, as published in the “Christian Advocate;” in which “A Pedo Baptist has attempted to confound the “spiritual” and “temporal” covenants made to Abraham into one covenant, in order to justify the practice of infant baptism as being introduced in the room and stead of infant circumcision of the flesh.

Without vanity, we think we have forever settled the point in the mind of every candid reader (who is seeking after truth as it is set forth in the scriptures) that the “temporal covenant” made to Abraham is yet in full force, for the design for which it was given; that it never was done away by any other ordinance being introduced in its stead.

The following is to show the nature of the “spiritual” covenant and its distinction from the “temporal” covenant. The temporal covenant (on which we have treated) was the second one of the two made to Abraham.

We shall show that the spiritual covenant is not confined to the literal seed of Abraham only, but that it is extended to all the families of the earth of Adam’s posterity, and that the circumcision of the heart is its seal; and in the sequel we shall extend its effect into the world of spirits in order to show the propriety, nature and effect of it unto the whole human family.

We have often heard it said by the Pedo Baptist that the ordinance of circumcision of the flesh, as instituted with Abraham, was an ordinance of the law given to Moses in the wilderness. We emphatically say that such an idea is without a foundation in the scriptures of the Old and New Testament.

The ordinance of circumcision of the flesh was instituted with Abraham some four hundred years before the law of “carnal” commandments was given to Moses. The covenants made to Abraham were given under the Melchisedec priesthood, for Abraham lived in the days of Melchisedec, king of Salem. Read Gen. xiv. The law of carnal commandments was given for the administration of the Levitical priesthood in the days of Moses.

The only proof we have ever head presented to prove that the ordinance of circumcision of the flesh was done away, is the saying of Paul, Romans x. 4, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness, to every one that believeth.”

The above quotation is made by the Pedo Baptist in view of the idea that the ordinance of circumcision of the flesh was an ordinance of the law referred to. Whereas we have found that the ordinance referred to was given more than four hundred years before the law was given. So down falls the idea that is designed to be sustained by the scripture quoted–the scripture quoted being grossly perverted by the Pedo Baptist to sustain a heretical doctrine.

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In the former Nos. referred to of the “Reveille” we have found that the “temporal covenant” made with Abraham was confined to his literal seed and those “bought with his money.”

We will now show that the “spiritual covenant” is extended to all the families of the earth, and that the same acts are requisite to constitute the literal seed of Abraham, spiritual Israel, that are required to make a gentile a spiritual Israelite.

Gen. xii.3, “And I will bless them that bless thee, (Abram,) and curse them that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.”

Gen. xxvi.4, first clause, “And in thy (Isaac’s) seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed.”

By the above we find that the Lord of Abraham continued the same “spiritual covenant” to Isaac that was made with Abraham. Gen. xxviii.14. The same covenant was continued to Jacob also.

Gal. iii.16, “Now to Abraham and his seed were the “promises” made.

[Notice “promises” in the plural. What promises? We answer, the temporal and spiritual covenants.]

“He (the Lord) saith not, and to seeds as of many; but as of one, and to thy seed, which is Christ.”

By the above we find that the great dispenser of the spiritual covenant was Christ, that in him and through him only, we are to participate [in] the blessings of salvation.

An analysis of the following scripture shows clearly that Abraham had received the circumcision of the heart before he was circumcised in the flesh.

Rom. iv.11, “And he (Abraham) received the sign of circumcision, (of the heart,) a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised; (in the flesh;) that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; (in the flesh;) that righteousness might be imputed unto them (gentiles) also.”

Rom. iv. 8, “Blessed is the man (whether of Abraham’s posterity or of the gentiles) to whom the Lord will not impute sin.

9. Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the uncircumcision also? For we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham for righteousness.

10. How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.”

The above decides the matter eternally that the spiritual blessing of the “spiritual covenant” was participated by Abraham before and independent of the circumcision of the flesh.

Deut. x.16, “Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart and be no more stiff-necked.”

By this we learn that Moses also knew something of the circumcision of the heart, distinct from the circumcision of the flesh.

Jer. iv.4, “Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, and take away the foreskin of your heart, ye men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem; lest my fury come forth like fire, and burn that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings.”

By the above we learn that the prophet Jeremiah was also acquainted with the work of the spiritual regeneration of the heart; he also saw the necessity of all the inhabitants of Jerusalem participating the same, to avoid the penalty due in case they did not do as he instructed them, though they all might have been circumcised in the flesh.

Deut. xxx. 6, “And the Lord thy God will circumcise thy heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the Lord thy God with all thy soul, that thou mayest live.”

By this we find that Moses was fully aware of the fact that the time would come when all Israel would be put in possession of the land of Canaan, according to the “temporal covenant;” that God would cause them to participate [in] the blessing of the “spiritual covenant” also.

Gal. v. 6, “For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision (in the flesh) availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.”

This clearly shows that the “temporal covenant” has no special connection with the “spiritual covenant,” and that it requires the same “faith that works by love” to make a natural Jew or Israelite a spiritual Israelite that it does a gentile, that is uncircumcised in the flesh.

With propriety the following interrogation and its answer may here be inserted:–

Rom. iii.1, “What advantage then hath the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision?

2. Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were com­mitted the oracles of God.”

Let the reader here notice that we are entirely dependent on the natural seed of Abraham for all the scriptures that is given to us of God, of both the Old and New Testaments. “The oracles of God” being the word of God and the means through which it is given.

The following scriptures show clearly that the Jews, or natural seed of Abraham, stand in no higher relation to God (in a spiritual point of light) than the gentiles do; though the Jews may all be circum­cised according to the stipulations of the “temporal covenant,” as they should be, in order to be legal claimants to an inheritance on the land of Canaan.

Rom. ii. 28, “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; nei­ther is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh.

29. But he is a Jew which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.”

The neglect of the observance of the ordinance of the circumcis­ion of the flesh in the case of a natural Jew, only throws him into the same relation to God that a natural gentile stands. So that whether circumcised or not circumcised [page 4] in the flesh, each have the same interest in the gospel of Christ, and each stand on the same footing in relation to the “spiritual covenant.”

But not so with the Jew in the flesh if he neglects the stipulations of the spiritual covenant; he not only loses his advantages of the covenant of salvation in Christ, but also loses his claim to the land of Canaan.

The gentile that does improve the advantages of the spiritual cov­enant, nevertheless has no claim to the land of Canaan, because of the fact that the land was ceded to the seed of Abraham, who im­prove the advantages of both covenants.

Much more might be said on the subject to show the distinction between the “temporal” and “spiritual covenants” made with Abraham, but we deem what we have said to be quite sufficient to show to the full satisfaction of all candid inquiring persons that God did establish “two covenants” with Abraham, as above suited, and that they were both equally in force with Abraham’s seed from the days of Abraham to this day.

Then, as the sign of the circumcision of the flesh is still in force for the same reason it was instituted with Abraham, it (circumcis­ion) was never done away to introduce another ordinance in its stead; consequently down falls the heretical doctrine of infant bap­tism as being introduced in stead of infant circumcision.

We most earnestly solicit of any “Pedo Baptist” a successful refutation of what we have presented on both subjects, viz., the “temporal” and “spiritual covenants” made to Abraham. If they (the Pedo Baptists) conclude that our ideas cannot be refuted, they will signify it by giving it a public sanction, or by holding their peace.

 (Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 22, p. 89/14)

THE PRIESTHOOD

The reader is respectfully solicited to read with care the following treatise on this all‑important point, viz., the Priesthood, which we deem to be the bone and sinew of the “spirit­ual covenant ” made with Abraham, because on this subject rests the whole interest of the christian religion and the legality of the christian church.

Where the christian PRIESTHOOD IS, there the CHRISTIAN CHURCH IS; and where the christian priesthood is NOT, there the christian church is NOT.

The following texts we deem to be sufficient to sustain us in this idea:

Romans x. 11, “For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

12. For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

13. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

14. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not be­lieved? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

15. And how shall they preach except they be sent? (of God,) as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!”

Let it be distinctly understood, that there is no other way known in the scriptures for the sending of a gospel “Preacher” but by di­rect revelation of God.

TO SEND, “To dispatch from one place to another; to commission by authority to go and act.”

SENDER, “He that sends.”

Then God is the only sender of all gospel preachers. Paul says, relative to the priesthood,

Heb. v. 4, “And no man taketh this honor unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.”

That Aaron was called by direct revelation, all but infidels will admit.

The following texts show clearly that Jesus Christ was equally dependent on his Father for the priesthood, as were the apostles of Christ:‑-

Heb. v. 5, “So also Christ glorified not himself, to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to‑day have I begotten thee.

6. As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest forever, after the order of Melchisedec.”

John xx. 21, “Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.”

The popular idea is, that the day of calling gospel preachers by direct revelation is entirely passed and gone. As popular as the idea is, it is, nevertheless, without foundation in the word of God. Therefore, all that assume to themselves the prerogative of preach­ing and administering in the word and ordinances of the gospel of Christ who have never been called of God to do so by direct revela­tion, assume to themselves that which Christ himself did not assume; and by so doing they do that which is not warranted in the word of God.

A self‑made or man‑made priesthood will preach a self‑made or man‑made doctrine; but the priesthood called of God will preach the truth of God as the apostles preached it. Instead of that we have any thing and every thing preached for gospel but the gospel of Christ in its primitive simplicity, with its gifts and blessings.

But still we hear in our world the loud saying, “we are called, and we are called.” We ask, how called? by revelation? “O no,” say they. We ask such to read and meditate well the scrip­tures quoted above.

We have found by the signification of terms that to send is sy­nonymous with the terms to authorize. Therefore, Jesus Christ re­ceived his priesthood or authority from his Father, and the apostles received their authority in part from Christ. We say in part, which we will explain in another [page 5] place.

Mark xiii. 34, “For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave AUTHORITY (priesthood) to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.”

By this we find that inasmuch as the AUTHORITY of Christ was after the order of Melchisedec, as a matter of course the “authority” which Christ conferred on his “servants” was of the same order.

We often hear it said that “Christ was the last Melchisedec priest on the earth.” That saying is a gross mistake, as the quotation above with the following clearly show:

Heb. iii. 1, “Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heaven­ly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;

2. Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.”

By this we find that the apostle Paul together with his “holy brethren” were made “partakers” of the SAME CALLING (priesthood ) or “profession” that Jesus Christ was of; who, as we have found above, was a priest after the order or “profession” of Melchisedec in distinction to the Aaronic priesthood, sometimes called Levitical because Aaron was of the family of Levi. To which family and their descendants the Levitical priesthood was confirmed for an everlasting priesthood.”

Christ was of the tribe of Judah, “of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood.” It is said that Christ was “faith­ful to him (God) who appointed him,” even as “Moses was faith­ful.”

By this we learn that Christ was as dependent on his Father (God) as was Moses for his authority. It also signifies that Moses was “APPOINTED” of God to some ORDER of PRIESTHOOD. Of what order? Let us search. Moses says,

Deut. xviii. 15, “The Lord God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, LIKE UNTO ME; unto him ye shall hearken.

18. I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto THEE, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.

19. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.”

The apostle Peter, when in the temple at Jerusalem preaching to the Jews, quoted the above texts to them and taught that the “Proph­et” there spoken of by Moses is Christ. Read Acts iii. 22, 23.

As Christ was a “high priest” after the “order of Melchisedec,” and he (Christ) was like unto Moses, then, as a matter of course, Moses was a high priest after the order of Melchisedec, or Christ could not be “like unto him.”

(Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 23, p. 94/145)
THE PRIESTH00D (CONTINUED)

THE PRIESTH00D.–NOW Melchisedec, of whom there is so much spoken by the apostle Paul, lived about four hundred years before Moses was called to be a prophet. Dr. Clark says that the person of Melchisedec was no other than Shem, the son of Noah, (or words to that effect.)

We very much doubt the doctor’s opinion relative to this matter, yet we have no doubt but that Melchisedec was a human being; and his person had a natural father and mother, and was probably of the descent of Shem, as was Abraham.

We say this because it is said of the priesthood of Melchisedec, that it was without father or mother, or descent (by natural lineage) as was the priesthood of Levi; which saying, “without father or mother,” is supposed by some to apply to the person of Melchisedec instead of his priesthood.

For an account of Melchisedec, read Gen. xiv. 18, 19, 20; also Heb. vii. In the 7th verse Paul denominates Melchisedec a “MAN.”

QUES. How, then, could it be said of Melchisedec that he was “without father, mother or descent?” ANS. That was spoken relative to the eternity of the priesthood which he had received, and not of his person.

Proof‑-Heb. vii. 16, “Who (Christ) is made (a high priest after the order of Melchisedec) not after the law of a carnal command­ment, (as Aaron was,) but after the power of an ENDLESS LIFE.”

Which is, as a matter of course, after the order of the life of the eternity of God himself; without father or mother, or descent, or be­ginning, or end of life.

Relative to the names of the persons through whom the eternal priesthood descended from Melchisedec to Moses, the present scrip­tures do not inform us in particular. Probably some ignorant tran­scribers or inefficient translators have left it out of the canon of the pentateuch. In Exodus xviii. we have an account of one Jethro, Moses’ father‑in‑law, who was a priest in the land of Midian, who was undoubtedly a servant of the God of Moses, and his priesthood had been conferred upon him by the power of the same God that called Melchisedec, and had descended to Jethro by regular succes­sion through persons called of God, whose names are not known at this time in the scriptures.

In order to evade the idea that Jethro was a priest of the true God, some have said that “Jethro was a heathen priest of an idolatrous character.”

Suppose that to be a fact, it was a curiosity indeed that Moses, who was a prophet and servant of the true God, should, with Aaron his spokesman, so passively submit to the counsel and dictation of a heathen priest, and not to counsel only, but they, with “all the elders of Israel,” united with Jethro in the offering of “sacrifice” and the “eating of bread before the Lord.”

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Please read carefully the following chapter :‑-

Ex. xviii. 1, “When Jethro the priest of Midian, Moses’ father-­in‑law, heard of all that God had done for Moses, and for Israel his people, and that the Lord had brought Israel out of Egypt:

2. Then Jethro took Zipporah, Moses’ wife,

3. And her two sons;

5. And came with his sons and his wife unto Moses into the wil­derness.

7. And Moses went out to meet his father‑in‑law, and did obeisance, and kissed him.

8. And Moses told his father‑in‑law all that the Lord had done unto Pharaoh, and to the Egyptians, for Israel’s sake, and all the travail that had come upon them by the way, and how the Lord de­livered them.

9. And Jethro rejoiced for all the goodness which the Lord had done to Israel, whom he had delivered out of the hand of the Egyp­tians.

10. And Jethro said, Blessed be the Lord, who hath delivered you out of the land of the Egyptians, and out of the hand of Phara­oh; who hath delivered the people from under the hand of the Egyptians.

11. Now I KNOW that the Lord is greater than all gods: for in the thing wherein they dealt proudly, he was above them.

12. And Jethro, Moses’ father‑in‑law, took a burnt-offering and sacrifices for God: and Aaron came, and all the elders of Israel to eat bread with Moses’ father‑in‑law, before God.

13. And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses sat to judge the people: and the people stood by Moses from the morning unto the evening.

14. And when Moses’ father‑in‑law saw all that he did to the peo­ple, He said, What is this thing that thou doest to the people?­ Why sittest thou thyself alone, and all the people stand by thee from morning unto even?

15. And Moses said unto his father‑in‑law, Because the people come unto me to inquire of God:

16. When they have a matter, they come unto me, and I judge between one and another; and I do make them know the statutes of God, and his laws.

17. And Moses’ father‑in‑law said unto him, The thing that thou doest is not good.

18. Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is too heavy for then; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone.

19. Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee COUNSEL, and God shall be with thee: be thou for the people to God‑ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God:

20. And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them the way wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.

21. Moreover, thou shalt provide out of all the people, able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens:

22. And let them judge the people at all seasons: and it shall be, that every great matter they shall bring unto thee, but every small matter they shall judge: so it shall be easier for thyself, and they shall bear the burden with thee.

23. If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace.

24. So Moses HEARKENED to the voice of his father‑in‑law, and did ALL that he had said.

25. And Moses chose able men out of all Israel, and made them heads over the people, rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rul­ers of fifties, and rulers of tens.

26. And they judged the people at all seasons: the hard causes they brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged them­selves.”

The above chapter confirms one of two facts. lst. That Jethro was an accepted priest of the blest High God, of the God of Mo­ses; or, 2d, That Moses did not know his duty before God of him­self, independent of heathenism. If, then, the latter be the fact, there is a manifest incongruity in the character of Moses’ proceedings that all the divines in the world cannot reconcile to the calling and duty of a prophet of God.

By referring to Exodus ii. and iii. we have the history of the circumstances that gave rise to the occasion of Moses’ flight from Egypt to the land of Midian, of his residence with Jethro, and of Moses keeping Jethro’s flock, and of Moses’ call from God to go and lead Israel (his brethren) from Egypt to the land of Canaan.

Ex. iv. 18, “And Moses went and returned to Jethro his father-­in‑law, and said unto him, Let me go, I pray thee, and return unto my brethren which are in Egypt, and see whether they be yet alive. And Jethro said to Moses, Go in peace.”

By this it appears that Moses, although called and strictly com­manded of God to “go,” yet he was somewhat dependent on the assent of Jethro to say to him, “GO IN PEACE.” Surely Moses’ residence with Jethro, 40 years, was amply a sufficient time for Moses to have decided whether Jethro was a heathen priest or not. ­More especially when he was eye witness to his own calling of God to go and deliver Israel by the vision of the angel of God in the “burning bush.”

Oh! sectarianism!! when will the honest part of the people see the force and truth of the apostle’s saying, “That no man knoweth the things of God, but the spirit of God.”-‑The spiritual man judgeth all things.” Think ye, dear readers, that Moses did not know by the spirit whether Jethro was a heathen priest or not.

(Zion’s Reveille, Vol. 2, No. 25, p. 101/153)
THE HIGHEST DEGREE OR MOST HOLY PRIESTHOOD

But Moses not only had the same priesthood which others, from Abraham to Jethro, doubtless possessed, but he had a certain author­ity and power which they never possessed, and of far higher grade, which he received by revelation of God when he called Moses to deliver Israel from bondage and establish them as a holy people, peculiar to himself.

Ex. ii. 24, “And God heard their groaning, and God remember­ed his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob.

25. “And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had re­spect unto them.”

iii. 6, “Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.

7. And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of my peo­ple which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows:

8 And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites.

10. Come now therefore, and I will send thee unto Pharaoh, that thou mayest bring forth my people the children of Israel out of Egypt.

12. And he said, Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee: When thou hast brought forth the people out of Egypt, ye shall serve God upon this mountain.

15. And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.

16. Go, and gather the elders of Israel together, and say unto them, The Lord God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, appeared unto me, saying, I have surely visited you, and seen that which is done to you in Egypt:

18. And they shall hearken to thy voice: and thou shalt come, thou and the elders of Israel, unto the king of Egypt, and ye shall say unto him, The LORD God of the Hebrews hath met with us: and now let us go, we beseech thee, three days’ journey into the wilderness, that we may sacrifice to the LORD our God.

 vi. 2. “And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I am the Lord:

3. And I appeared unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, by the name of God Almighty, but by my name Jehovah was I not known to them.

4. And I have also established my covenant with them, to give them the land of Canaan, the land of their pilgrimage, wherein they were strangers.

5. And I have also heard the groaning of the children of Israel, whom the Egyptians keep in bondage; and I have remembered my covenant.

6. Wherefore say unto the children of Israel, I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will rid you out of their bondage, and I will redeem you with a stretched out arm, and with great judgments:

7. And I will take you to me for a people, and I will be to you a God: and ye shall know that I am the Lord your God, which bringeth you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.

8. And I will bring you in unto the land, concerning the which I did swear to give it to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob; and I will give it you for an heritage: I am the Lord.

These texts establish the following points: That God gave Mo­ses authority by revelation, that is by speaking to him to act as the head, leader, ruler, or lawgiver of all the tribes of Israel; that God in like manner gave him authority to lead Israel out of Egypt into the land of Canaan, to possess it AS HE HAD PROMISED unto Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. This power he could receive from NONE BUT GOD, because no one on earth possessed it. Consequently it was given by direct revelation, without the interposition of any act of any man whatever.

The extent of the authority thus conferred on Moses is seldom sufficiently appreciated. Indeed, people have so far overlooked the real facts as to suppose that what Moses actually accomplished was all that he designed or undertook, or had authority of God to do; whereas, in fact, he was commissioned to make Israel a holy na­tion, a kingdom of priests unto God.

Ex. xix. 5, “Now therefore if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people; for all the earth is mine:

6. And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.”

It was the intent of Moses to establish Israel in the land for an everlasting possession, ACCORDING TO THE COVENANT which God made with Abraham.

Dent. vii. 8, “8 But because the Lord loved you, and because he would keep the oath which he had sworn unto your fathers, hath the Lord brought you out with a mighty hand, and redeemed you out of the house of bondmen, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.”

Jer. xi. 3, “And say thou unto them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel; Cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant,

4. Which I commanded your fathers in the day that I

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brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, Obey my voice, and do them, according to all which I command you: so shall ye be my people, and I will be your God:

5. That I may perform the oath which I have sworn unto your fathers, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day.  Then answered I, and said, So be it, O Lord.

This work he failed to accomplish by reason of the rebellion and disobedience of the Israelites. Still he brought them into posses­sion of part of the land, and established them as the people of God by virtue of the law of carnal commandments and the covenant made before the death of Moses.

Deut. xxvi. 17, “Thou hast avouched the Lord this day to be thy God, and to walk in his ways, and to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and to hearken unto his voice:

18. And the Lord hath avouched thee this day to be his peculiar people, as he hath promised thee, and that thou shouldest keep all his commandments;

19. And to make thee high above all nations which he hath made, in praise, and in name, and in honour; and that thou mayest be an holy people unto the Lord thy God, as he hath spoken.

xxix. 10, “Ye stand this day all of you before the Lord your God; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers, with all the men of Israel,

11. Your little ones, your wives, and thy stranger that is in thy camp, from the hewer of thy wood unto the drawer of thy water:

12. That thou shouldest enter into covenant with the Lord thy God, and into his oath, which the Lord thy God maketh with thee this day:

13. That he may establish thee to‑day for a people unto himself, and that he may be unto thee a God, as he hath said unto thee, and as he hath sworn unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Ja­cob.”

Under this law they did not hold the land for an everlasting pos­session; for Israel brake the covenant and were cast out of the land. Nevertheless, this is the means by which they, through suffering, are made perfect, that they may enjoy the land according to the oath of God to Abraham, which he renewed to Isaac and confirmed to Jacob. Deut. xxx. xxxi. 24 to 29. Gal. iii. 16 to 21.

By these scriptures we have seen also that Christ  is the SEED through whom God would fulfill the covenant with Abraham. We have already seen that he was made a high priest after the order of Melchisedec. By the following it will appear that HE is the medi­ator of the new and better covenant, which God will establish with the house of Israel and the house of Judah in the last days.

Heb. xii. 24, Ye are come “to Jesus, the mediator of the new covenant,” &c.; and see Heb. viii. 8 to 13.  x. 16, 17. Jer. xxxi. 31 to 34. xxxii. 37 to 42. xxxiii. Ezek. xxxvii. 20 to 28.

PRIESTHOOD OF JUDGES AND PROPHETS

This priesthood did not continue after Moses, and is no more found until the time of Christ. Moses had no successor. Joshua succeed­ed him as leader of Israel, but not with the same degree of authority or priesthood.

Num. xxvii. 12, “And the Lord said unto Moses, Get thee up into this mount Abarim, and see the land which I have given unto the children of Israel.

13. And when thou hast seen it, thou also shalt be gathered unto thy people, as Aaron thy brother was gathered.

16. (And Moses said,) Let the Lord, the God of the spirits of all flesh, set a man over the congregation,

17. Which may go out before them, and which may go in before them, and which may lead them out, and which may bring them in; that the congregation of the Lord be not as sheep which have no shepherd.

18. And the Lord said unto Moses, Take thee Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the spirit, and lay thy hand upon him;

19. And set him before Eleazar the priest, and before all the con­gregation; and give him a charge in their sight.

20. And thou shalt put some of thine honor (priesthood) upon him, that all the congregation of the children of Israel may be obedient.”

Joshua, therefore, had only part of the authority of Moses. What priesthood had Moses? The priesthood after the order of Melchis­edec, of an endless life. When he put part of THIS honor (priesthood) on Joshua, what priesthood had Joshua? Part of the same; that is, part of the authority of the Melchisedec priesthood. This fur­ther appears from the fact that Joshua, like Christ, was of a tribe of whom Moses spake nothing (in the law) concerning the priest­hood. He was of the tribe of Ephraim, (Num. xiii. 8,) and con­sequently could not have held the Levitical or Aaronic priesthood, which was limited to the tribe of Levi. Ex. xxviii. 1. Num. iii. 5, 6, 9, 10.

From Moses until Samuel Israel was ruled by judges, who gave commandments in the name of the Lord; that is, by the authority of the PRIESTHOOD, and who were PROPHETS, and who, in some cases, erected altars and offered sacrifices at other places than the sanctu­ary, where only the Aaronic priesthood could minister.

Among these judges was Deborah, a prophetess. Judges iv. 4, 5. Tola, of the tribe of Issacher. Judges x. 1. Elon, of the tribe of Zebulon. Judges xii. 11. Samson, of the tribe of Dan. Judges xiii. 2, 24. xv. 20. Eli, of the tribe of Levi. 1 Sam. ii. 27, 28.­–These all, and several others, governed Israel in the NAME and by authority of God, and, save Eli, none of them were of the tribe of Levi. Consequently none but Eli could have held the Levitical priesthood. After the time of the judges Israel was governed by kings whom God gave them in his anger. Samuel was the last of the judges, and he appointed the first kings.

The history of these times is extremely meagre. Still, in the single instance of the transfer of the authority from Eli to Samuel, enough is said to show the manner in which the authority was conferred. That is, the Lord spoke both to Samuel, who was put into this priesthood, and to Eli, who was put out of it, and told them what he would do. The reader is desired to read carefully 1 Sam iii., by which it appears that the Lord revealed himself to Samuel and told him what he would do with the house of Eli, v. 12. And the Lord was with Samuel from that day, and “let none of his words fall,” v. 19. Moreover it appears that when Samuel told Eli what the Lord had revealed to him, Eli said, “It is the Lord;” a fact he could only have known by the Lord’s revealing the same thing to him, v. 13. From that time forward Eli no more acts in the judges or prophet’s office, though he remained in the Levitical priest’s office until his death. But all Israel go out and come in at the voice of Samuel. 1 Sam. iv. 1. As this took place while Samuel was yet a child, it is perfectly clear that the authority could not have been thus transferred from Eli to Samuel without a struggle, except by their united voice.

From the time of Samuel, Israel was governed by kings; but it is a remarkable feature of the times that the prophet was above the king; that prophets both made and unmade kings; that they dictated to them war and peace, and that, while kings submitted to this authority, Israel prospered; and when they rose above it, Israel was overcome by their enemies. In the name of God, that is, by the priesthood or authority of God, Samuel made Saul king of Israel­. 1 Sam. ix. 15, 10. x. 1. By the same priesthood he removed him from being king. 1 Sam. xv. 23, 28. By the same priesthood, also, Samuel made David king instead of Saul. 1 Sam. xvi. 12, 13. As these kings were made by the power of the priesthood, it is clear that they were not above him who made them. The prophet could confer no power, only such as he possessed. Saul was of the tribe of Benjamin, and David of Judah, of which tribes Moses wrote nothing concerning the priesthood.

What priesthood did these men hold? These prophet judges, these kings and these prophet king‑makers? We answer, not the Aaron­ic: 1st, They were not of the right lineage. 2d, They did not minister at the altar of the law of carnal commandments. 3d, The whole order of that priesthood was filled in their time by others of the true lineage. What priesthood, then, did they hold? The Mel­chisedec. Not the same degree of authority as Moses had therein, but like that which he put upon Joshua, because, 1st, they erected an altar and offered sacrifices where they had occasion, 2 Sam. xxiv. 25, 1 Kings xviii. 31 to 39, Judges vi. 25, 26, xiii. 16 to 19, 2 Sam. vi. 17, 18, and were not confined to one sanctuary, as was the Aaronic priesthood. Deut. xii. 11, 12, 13, 14.

2d, They received not their priesthood by lineage, either in the line of Aaron or in any other family, but were individually called and chosen of God.

3d, They exercised the GOVERNING POWER in Israel, which NEVER pertained to the AARONIC PRIESTHOOD.

This governing power is one of the prerogatives of the Melchisedec priesthood. Melchisedec was king of Salem. Gen. xiv. 18.–­Moses was king of Israel.  Deut. xxxiii. 4, 5. The judges ruled Israel with royal authority. The prophets could not be less than kings, for they made kings.

But the POWER, or priesthood, to make Israel a peculiar treasure; a holy people; a nation of priests unto God; to bring in the rest which remaineth to his people; Heb. iii. 4; to establish the better covenant upon better promises; by means of which the seed of Abraham should hold Canaan for a perpetual inheritance, and bring in everlasting righteousness, was taken away with Moses, who on­ly put a part of his honor or priesthood on Joshua. Consequently not till the coming of Christ was there a PROPHET LIKE UNTO MOSES, in the POWERS OF HIS PRIESTHOOD.

PRIESTHOOD TAKEN AWAY WITH MOSESWITH MOSES

Against this exposition of the scriptures the following passage from the Doctrine and Covenants is sometimes quoted :‑-

Sec. iv. par. 4, “Now this Moses plainly taught to the children of Israel in the wilderness, and sought diligently to sanctify his people that they might behold the face of God; but they hardened their hearts and could not endure his presence, therefore, the Lord, in his wrath, (for his anger was kindled against them,) swore that they should not enter into his rest, while in the wilderness, which rest is the fullness of his glory. Therefore he took Moses out of their midst and the holy priesthood also; and the lesser priesthood

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contin­ued, which priesthood holdeth the key of the ministering of angels and the preparatory gospel, 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.”

Now it is perfectly obvious that all priesthood or authority of God is holy; and as some priesthood remained after taking away the holy priesthood it becomes an important question‑-what is meant by “the holy priesthood” in this passage? Unquestionably the “most holy.” Immediately above we are told that “Moses sought diligently to sanctify his people,” “that they might enter into the rest of God, which (rest) is the fulness of his (God’s) glory;” but for the hard­ness of their hearts he “swear in his wrath” that they should not en­ter into his rest; and therefore took away that most holy degree or measure of priesthood which should bring them into the fulness of God’s glory: and as to that less priesthood which administers in the “law of carnal commandments,” he tells us it continued till John, but says nothing, in regard to that part of the honor or priest­hood of Moses which he put upon Joshua, which the elders of Israel had; and by prerogative of which Israel was governed till they de­parted altogether from God.

 

RESTORATION OF THE MELCHISEDEC PRIESTHOOD.

Christ was sent to restore the priesthood of God to them which was after the order of an endless life, and “gather Israel as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings,” and rule over them by the greater or most glorious priesthood.

We have already found that Christ and the apostles were of the Melchisedec priesthood. We now come to the rendering of the scriptural reason why the Melchisedec priesthood should be restored. The reader is requested to read the 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th chapters of Heb., and the 3d chapter of Gal., that he may the better profit by the quotations we shall make from them.

Heb. vii. 11, “If, therefore, perfection were by the Levitical priest­hood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron?

12. For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.”

Let the reader keep his eye on the word “perfect” or “perfection,” because on these terms hangs the great reason why the priesthood of Melchisedec should be restored. We see by the text above that “perfection” could not be attained to by the Levitical priesthood; hence the necessity of a better one. The “law” to which the apos­tle refers was given for the administration of the Levitical priest­hood, and not the Melchisidec. 19 ver., “The law made nothing perfect.”

Ques. For what purpose was the law given?

ANS. For a rod of chastisement, “a curse,” “a schoolmaster,” to bring Israel back to the “law of righteousness by faith, under which Israel lived before the law of curse was given. Paul says, Gal. iii. 19, “The law “was added because of transgressions.”

QUES. What law or commandment had Israel transgressed, for which the law of carnal commandments and ordinances was “ad­ded ” for them (Israel) to observe?

ANS. The law of righteousness, which was by faith in Jesus Christ, under which all the ancient servants of God lived and served God, before the law of “curse was added.” Heb. xi. 26.

By this we find that Moses had faith in Christ in that he “es­teemed the reproach of Christ” of more value than all the wealth of Egypt. Why? Because the reward of Christ was a greater recompense for his services. Again, Paul says,

Gal, iii. 8, “And the scripture, (prophets,) foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.”

By this we find Abraham had the gospel preached to him, through which not only his natural seed but all the rest of the families of the earth should be saved “through faith,” under the gospel which is the “perfect law of liberty,” by which, and only which, the church or servants of Christ can possibly be perfected or saved.

Abraham lived in the days of Melchisedec, some four hundred years before the law of curse of carnal commandments was given to Moses in the wilderness. Melchisedec possessed the same priest­hood, and preached the same gospel of salvation that Christ and the Apostles did. None that are familiar with the scriptures will dis­pute the idea that the Levitical priesthood was ordained of God by direct revelation, and none could act in its authority but those on whom it was legally conferred.

  With all the powers, immunities and ordinances that the Levitical priesthood possessed, it could not perfect the church, the Israel of God; consequently the necessity of a higher or greater power of God to be manifested through a greater or better priesthood; hence the necessity of a change in the law to redeem Israel from a law of bondage of “curse” to a law of “liberty,” redeeming the people from a law demanding carnal sacrifices to the offering of spiritual sac­rifices of a broken heart and a contrite spirit before the Lord, under the administration of a priesthood having power with God to con­verse with him, as did Moses, Christ, Peter, Paul and the others who possessed the keys of the “holy priesthood” and receive direct revelation from God, without which the church of Christ CANNOT EXIST, MUCH LESS BE PERFECTED.

Inasmuch, then, as it is indispensably necessary that the church of Christ should possess a priesthood having

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power with God to re­ceive revelations to effect a perfect union between the Jews and gen­tiles, “and so make peace,” I ask, in all candor, in the name of all that is good and glorious, how can it be rationally expected by the religious world, professing the christian faith, that such an event can take place without it?

RESTORATION OF THE MELCHISEDEC PRIESTHOOD

Christ was sent to restore the priesthood of God to them which was after the order of an endless life, and “gather Israel as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings,” and rule over them by the greater or most glorious priesthood.

We have already found that Christ and the apostles were of the Melchisedec priesthood. We now come to the rendering of the scriptural reason why the Melchisedec priesthood should be restored. The reader is requested to read the 7th, 8th, 9th and 10th chapters of Heb., and the 3d chapter of Gal., that he may the better profit by the quotations we shall make from them.

Heb. vii. 11, “If, therefore, perfection were by the Levitical priest­hood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron?

12. For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.”

Let the reader keep his eye on the word “perfect” or “perfection,” because on these terms hangs the great reason why the priesthood of Melchisedec should be restored. We see by the text above that “perfection” could not be attained to by the Levitical priesthood; hence the necessity of a better one. The “law” to which the apos­tle refers was given for the administration of the Levitical priest­hood, and not the Melchisidec. 19 ver., “The law made nothing perfect.”

Ques. For what purpose was the law given?

ANS. For a rod of chastisement, “a curse,” “a schoolmaster,” to bring Israel back to the “law of righteousness by faith, under which Israel lived before the law of curse was given. Paul says, Gal. iii. 19, “The law “was added because of transgressions.”

QUES. What law or commandment had Israel transgressed, for which the law of carnal commandments and ordinances was “ad­ded ” for them (Israel) to observe?

ANS. The law of righteousness, which was by faith in Jesus Christ, under which all the ancient servants of God lived and served God, before the law of “curse was added.” Heb. xi. 26.

By this we find that Moses had faith in Christ in that he “es­teemed the reproach of Christ” of more value than all the wealth of Egypt. Why? Because the reward of Christ was a greater recompense for his services. Again, Paul says,

Gal, iii. 8, “And the scripture, (prophets,) foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.”

By this we find Abraham had the gospel preached to him, through which not only his natural seed but all the rest of the families of the earth should be saved “through faith,” under the gospel which is the “perfect law of liberty,” by which, and only which, the church or servants of Christ can possibly be perfected or saved.

Abraham lived in the days of Melchisedec, some four hundred years before the law of curse of carnal commandments was given to Moses in the wilderness. Melchisedec possessed the same priest­hood, and preached the same gospel of salvation that Christ and the Apostles did. None that are familiar with the scriptures will dis­pute the idea that the Levitical priesthood was ordained of God by direct revelation, and none could act in its authority but those on whom it was legally conferred.

  With all the powers, immunities and ordinances that the Levitical priesthood possessed, it could not perfect the church, the Israel of God; consequently the necessity of a higher or greater power of God to be manifested through a greater or better priesthood; hence the necessity of a change in the law to redeem Israel from a law of bondage of “curse” to a law of “liberty,” redeeming the people from a law demanding carnal sacrifices to the offering of spiritual sac­rifices of a broken heart and a contrite spirit before the Lord, under the administration of a priesthood having power with God to con­verse with him, as did Moses, Christ, Peter, Paul and the others who possessed the keys of the “holy priesthood” and receive direct revelation from God, without which the church of Christ CANNOT EXIST, MUCH LESS BE PERFECTED.

Inasmuch, then, as it is indispensably necessary that the church of Christ should possess a priesthood having

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power with God to re­ceive revelations to effect a perfect union between the Jews and gen­tiles, “and so make peace,” I ask, in all candor, in the name of all that is good and glorious, how can it be rationally expected by the religious world, professing the christian faith, that such an event can take place without it?

NAME IMPLIES PRIESTHOOD

Having found that the terms “priesthood,” “authority” and “sent” are synonymous in their signification, when used in an ecclesiastical sense, we now proceed to notice the term “name” in its bearings in the same sense.  We shall offer it as being of the same import and synonymous with the other terms just referred to.  In common things the term name is significant of distinction by which one thing is distinguished from another, as mountain, hill, river, creek, brook, &c.; but when used in reference to an official act it signifies the RIGHT, POWER, AND AUTHORITY by which the act is performed, and from what source it was derived.

       For example, suppose Mr. A. was sent by the President of these United States as a national minister to transact business with the Queen of Great Britain, his diplomatic credentials received direct from the President would be his introduction to said Queen, and significant of Mr. A.’s relation to the President by whom he was “sent,” and the “authority” by which he would act in discharging the duties of that functionary.  Then suppose it should happen in the course of time that Mr. A. should have a successor in that office, could Mr. B. succeed Mr. A. by merely pocketing Mr. A.’s diplomatic credentials?  We answer, most emphatically, NO!  The immediate act of the President would be as indispensably necessary to authorize Mr. B. as in the case of A.

       The above supposed case is sufficiently illustrative of every other official capacity known in the civilized world relative to every civil and military office.  No succession in office is considered valid or legal but that which is derived from the same source and by the same means as its predecessor was.  If any man or men are appointed to an office of honor or profit by the sovereign or parliament, President or Congress, Governor or assembly, or by the elective franchise, so must their successors be appointed.

       So with every private and moral organization known among men.  There is no such thing known as an organization of a kingdom without officers, consequently there must be some way adopted to constitute those offices and by the same means keep them up in succession; and to attempt to assume an office in any organization created by the power and will of men in considered an usurpation and an imposition on the community.

       So also it is with the church and kingdom of God.  It recognizes in its organization a “priesthood,” and the different grades of the priesthood constitute the legal “authorities” of said church or kingdom.

       As all officers in any kingdom or state exercise authority in the name of the king or state, so all officers in the kingdom of Christ must exercise authority in the name of Christ.  As no man can act in the name of any king without an appointment immediately from him or from some authorized officer under him, so no man can act in the priesthood, that is in the name of God, without an appointment immediately from God, like that of Moses, or from the authorized priesthood under him, like that of Aaron, who was called by the mouth of the prophet.

PRIESTHOOD IN THE APOSTOLIC CHURCH

According to the history of the New Testament, under the apostolic administration, the church authorities were distinguished by the following names: “Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors, Teachers, Bishops and Deacons.”  As far as the duties of the above named officers of the church required them to act in the “NAME of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost,” it becomes necessary that the Father, Son and Holy Ghost should have immediate and direct action in the case in order to qualify those men to act in legal righteousness.  The twelve first men that were the first called and “endued” with that legal “priesthood” or “authority” to act in the “name” of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost were Peter, Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew, James, the son of Alpheus, Lebbeus, Thaddeus, Simon and Judas.  Read Mat. x. 2, 3, 4.  Judas Iscariot betrayed his Lord into the hands of murderers, and himself came to a dreadful end;  the other eleven received the following command and commission:

Mat. xxviii. 19, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost;

20. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Mark xvi. 14, “Afterward he appeared unto the eleven, as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief, and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.

15.  And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

16.  He that believeth and is baptized, shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

17.  And these signs shall follow them that believe: In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18.  They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

19.  So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.

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20.  And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.”

I ask, did the commission above quoted fully authorize those eleven above named persons to discharge the duties demanded in the commission?  I answer, emphatically, NO.  Why?  says one.  Because they had only as yet received the sanction of the Son, the sanction of the Father and Holy Ghost had not yet been given.

Acts i. 4, “ And (Jesus) being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me.

5.  For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.

8.  But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me, both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”

Luke xxiv 46, “And (Jesus) said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:

47.  And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name (authority) among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

48.  And ye are witnesses of these things.”

16.  And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;

17.  Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him: for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.”

St. John xvi. 13, “How beit, when he, the Spirit of truth is come he will guide you into all truth:  for he shall not speak of himself;  but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

14.  He shall glorify me:  for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.

15.  All things that the Father hath are mine:  therefore said I that he shall take of mine, and shall shew it unto you.”

The above texts show clearly by what means those eleven apostles received the sanction of the Father and Holy Ghosts as well as the son.  For a second person to “receive POWER” from a first person to act in his “name” it is indispensably necessary that the first should communicate such “power” direct of himself by some established precedent ordained of himself.

We have found above that the established precedent by which men are called to the holy priesthood as ministers of salvation to a dying world, is by direct revelation.  Here is the precedent: 

Heb. V. 4, “No man taketh this honor (priesthood) to himself but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.”

Aaron was called by revelation.  If then, “the promise of the Father” had not been communicated to the eleven men whom Jesus called to the ministry of the christian religion, they would have died a natural death at Jerusalem.  But, according to the “promise,” not many days after the ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ the “baptism of the Holy Ghost” was realized by those to whom it was promised at Jerusalem, it was there and then the “servants” of God began to execute the duties of their high and responsible “priesthood” or “authority;” which had not only been conferred on them by the Son, but by the Father and the Holy Ghost that authorized them to “preach” and “baptize” in the “name” of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.  Read Acts ii.

It was at Jerusalem the signs began to follow those that believed the apostles’ testimony, as appears in the case of the healing of the lame man.

Acts iii. 11, “And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s, greatly wondering.

12.  And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this?  or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power of holiness we had made this man to walk?

13.  The God of Abraham and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers hath glorified his Son Jesus;  (with the high priesthood, Heb. V. 5;)  whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go.

14.  But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you,

15.  And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.

16. And his name, (priesthood,) through faith in his name, (priesthood,) hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him, (the lame man,) hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.”

Acts iv. 6, “And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem.

7. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name have ye done this?

8. Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,

9. If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the important man, by what means he is made whole;

10. Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name (power, authority or priesthood) of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.”

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Let the reader notice that the term “power,” as used in the above texts, is synonymous with the term “name,” they being both synonymous with the terms “priesthood,” “authority,” &c., &c.

FALSE PRIESTHOOD

Mat. vii. 21, “Not every one 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.

22.  Many will say to me in that day, (of judgment,)  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?

23.  And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”

The above last quoted texts clearly show that there will be certain characters who, at the day of judgment, will plead that they have done many mighty works in the “name” of Jesus Christ, unto whom the Lord will profess that he “never knew them.” In what sense did the Lord not know them?  Certainly the Lord knows every man as his own created being as a man.  In that case it must be understood that the saying, “ I never knew you,” only applies to such as the Lord never called to the priesthood by direct revelation.

As we have found clearly that the Lord has not adopted any other means to call any person to the priesthood but by revelation, I ask how much short does the text come of embracing all those who profess to be ministers of Christ, who say that the gift of direct revelation is passed and gone?  And by so saying frankly confess that they were never called of the Lord to the important function which they have assumed.  Oh! what a scene it will be when the “many” or multitudes of contradictory sectarian heretical ministers stand before Christ, to answer before him for assuming to themselves that which God never conferred on them–themselves being their own accusers by the doctrines they have taught.

IMMUTABILITY OF THE GOSPEL PRIESTHOOD

In order to drive a nail in a sure place and give it an eternal clinch that can neither be drawn or broken, we offer the following remarks:  There is not a word in the scriptures to show that the gospel of Christ is in any degree changeable or mutable;  but there are many texts to show to the contrary.  We give the following for a sample:

Gal. I. 6, “I (Paul) marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ, unto another gospel:

7. Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.

8. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.

9. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

10. For do I now persuade men, or God?  Or do I seek to please men?  For if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”

The fact is, there is neither if or and or proviso in the case to show that the gospel of Christ is anything more or less than it was at the beginning for the salvation of mankind.  It is, therefore, worth all it presents itself to be to Abraham, Moses, the prophets, Christ and the apostles, and all that should believe on Christ through the preaching of the word by those who are called to the holy priesthood.

If the gift of eternal life is not a knowledge of the Father and the Son by revelation, then the words of Christ, which we quote below mean nothing to the understanding of mankind.  And if they do not mean all they say to us of the nineteenth century, then they did not mean anything in the first century

John xvii. 1,  “These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify

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thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:

2. As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.

3. And this is LIFE ETERNAL, that they might know THEE the only TRUE GOD, and JESUS CHRIST, whom thou hast sent.”

Mat. xi, 27, “All things are delivered unto ME of my FATHER; and NO MAN KNOWETH the SON, but the FATHER: neither KNOWETH any man the FATHER, save the SON, and HE to whomsoever the SON will REVEAL him.”  Luke x. 22.

The above quotations are the words of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who will not change his purpose, and scheme of life and salvation, to suit the caprice or ignorance of any man or community.

Therefore, he that saith–The day of revelation is past and gone virtually saith that the “gift” of “ETERNAL LIFE” is no longer accessible by man–such, therefore, know not God, but deceive themselves and the world, and are of Anti-Christ, “denying the only LORD GOD, and our LORD JESUS CHRIST.”  Jude, 4th ver.

Eph. i. 17, “That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ;  the Father of Glory, may give unto you the Spirit of Wisdom and Revelation in the knowledge of him: (God:)

18. The EYES of your understanding being enlightened; (by revelation;) that ye may KNOW what is the hope of his calling, and what the RICHES of the GLORY of his INHERITANCE in the SAINTS.”

By this we find that the Light, Understanding and Knowledge of the Wisdom and glory of the inheritance in the Saints, is only attainable by Revelation.

Therefore, a religion divested of the gift of Revelation, is nothing more or less than a form without power, a shadow without substance; leaving the great family of mankind to be “tossed to and fro with every wind of doctrine,” got up by the “cunning craftiness” and will of men, who wield a religious influence in the world to feed the few and starve the many, “supposing that gain is godliness.”

For the sake of popular opinion men can cringe and crouch to the sayings of men that the day of the calling of christian ministers to the holy priesthood by revelation is entirely passed and gone. Such a course of conduct will pass well before men who love the honor of men more than the honor that comes from God.  But at the judgment of Christ let such look for the full demonstration of the following saying of Christ:

Mat. vii, 21,  “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.

22. 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?

23. And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you:  depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

26. And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:

27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.

28 And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:

29. For he taught them as one having authority, (priesthood,) and not as the scribes;” (who had no priesthood, nor yet the gift of revelation; we having before shown that the terms priesthood and name are synonymous.)

But to the righteous, who have dug deep into the things that pertain to their salvation, and built on the rock of revelation, the following scriptures will most gloriously apply:

Mat. xvi. 15., “He (Jesus) saith unto them, (disciples,) But who say ye that I am?

16. And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art Christ, the Son of the living God.

17. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou Simon-Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my father which is in heaven.

18. And I say also unto thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock (revelation) I will build my church: and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it, (the rock of revelation.) 

19. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven:  and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven.”

Mat. vii. 24, “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: (not Peter, but revelation.)

25. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.” (revelation.)

Who is so blind in the eyes of their understanding as not to see that it is the present character of the religious world the people are as much puzzled relative to the doctrine of Christ and the plan or scheme of salvation as were the people in the day of Christ to determine who Christ was in person, as is manifest in the following scriptures:–

Mat. xvi. 13, “When Jesus came into the coasts of Cesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?

14.  And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.”

All of those differences of views and opinions concerning the person of Christ was for the want of a revelation from God on the subject.  By this we account for all the differences of views and opinions concerning the gospel of  [page 16] Christ–it is for the want of a revelation on the subject.

PRIESTHOOD of MODERN CHRISTENDOM.

We have before us some lengthy articles written on the subject of the succession of the christian priesthood by the church of Eng­land, in which they have attempted to show that they enjoy the “exclusive” right to that function.

And how, pray, do they make that appear? Why, by asserting that the English church descended down to the present day from Paul, in England, distinct and aside from the Popes of Rome. And not even once have they appealed to gift of revelation as continuing with them, to give warrant to their claims; they have appealed to the laying on of the hands only for the succession of their claim to the priesthood.

We have before us a lengthy treatise by the Roman Catholic church, in which they make an exclusive claim to the same function as do the English church. And there is no doubt but the Greek church makes the same pretensions.

As for the Methodists, Presbyterians, and many other denominations, we know not that they make any claim to a succession of the priesthood as unbroken from the ancient apostles; so that they do not even deserve a passing notice, as far as the subject of priesthood is concerned. So we will leave them mired in their own ignorance and willful fully.

And as the world is demanding of us a sign to show that the priesthood is renewed to us, can we not with equal propriety demand of the Catholics, Greek church, and the church of England the same to prove to us that the priesthood has continued with either or all of them. Who will answer?

We have found that the Melchisedec priesthood is one of the most important points in the “spiritual covenant” made to Abraham, and shat it was in force in his day; through which he received the sign of circumcision of the heart as its seal, and that too before he re­ceived the circumcision of the flesh.

Rom. iv. 11, “That he (Abraham) might be the father (spiritu­ally) of all them that believe, (in Christ and his priesthood, and obey the gospel of Christ, through his authority.)

12. And the father of circumcision (of the heart) to them who are not of the circumcision (of the flesh) only, but (those of the circum­cision of the flesh also) who also walk in the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet uncircumcised, (in the flesh.)

13. For the promise, that he (Abraham) should be the heir of the (whole) world, was not to Abraham, or his seed, through the law, (of circumcision of the flesh,) but through the righteousness of faith.

14. For if they (only) which are of the law (of the circumcision of the flesh) be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect, ( to the gentiles.)

15. Because the law (of circumcision in the flesh) worketh wrath: (to those to whom it belongs, if they do not obey it:) for where no law is, there is no transgression.

16. Therefore it (the promise of the heirship of the world) is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the. (spiritual) seed: not to that only which is of tile law, (of the circumcision of the flesh,) but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all,” (Jews and gen­tiles who become the spiritual seed of Abraham through the priest­hood of the gospel of Christ, the power and strength of the spiritual covenant.)

CONCLUSION.

We have in this brief work shown by the mouth of Christ, Moses, prophets and apostles that priesthood is authority to act in the name of God; that the Melchisedec is the higher priesthood; that it alone holds the power to administer all the ordinances necessary for sal­vation; that the gospel is the law of the Melchisedec priesthood; that the Melchisedec priesthood is a royal priesthood, and holds the governing power among men by right divine, and that no man can lawfully exercise any of the functions of the priesthood except he is set apart thereunto, not merely by the laying on of hands of those who are in the priesthood, but by REVELATION OF GOD.

Ho all ye HIRELING PRIESTS! Ho all ye pretenders to the AUTHORI­TY of God! Ho every one that climbeth up some other way, and cometh NOT into the priesthood BY THE GATE that God hath appointed! Ho all ye SECTARIAN SHEPHERDS who were NOT called by REVELATION! Ho all ye whom Christ denominates THIEVES and ROBBERS! John x. 1: Repent and be baptized for the REMISSION of your sins, or ye shall all be damned. Had you acted in the NAME of your fellow man, without his word to authorize you, as you have acted in the NAME OF GOD WITHOUT HIS WORD authorizing you, you would ALL be shut up in PRISON as FORGERS and SWINDLERS.  Ye who have called PROPHETS and APOSTLES IMPOSTORS for testifying that they were called by revelation, be ashamed; for the God to which ye pray and the Lord whom you acknowledge are their own witnesses that ALL who are NOT THUS CALLED ARE IMPOSTORS.

Therefore repent of all your evil speaking and all your accusations of God’s servants, and all your USURPATIONS of the priesthood; believe the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ as he revealed it and be baptized in the NAME of the FATHER, and the SON and the HOLY GHOST, by one who has RECEIVED AUTHORITY FROM THEM to baptize in THEIR NAME, or God will say unto you, depart from me ye workers of iniqui­ty, I NEVER KNEW YOU.

PRIESTHOOD of MODERN CHRISTENDOM.