Mormons are studying chapter 13 of their Gospel Principles manual this weekend, the first of two chapters focusing on the LDS priesthood. I have written a response to that chapter that is now available on the IRR website. In my article I make a number of observations that I will merely summarize here:
- In LDS doctrine, “priesthood” is an impersonal divine power, the power that Heavenly Father obtained in the process of his exaltation to Godhood and that he used in creation, and that human beings can also obtain through the ordinances of the LDS Church.
- The above conception of priesthood appears nowhere in the Bible, the LDS scriptures, or the teachings of Joseph Smith.
- In New Testament teaching, there is no such thing as an earthly office of priest in the Christian church.
- Priesthood in the Bible was an earthly type of the heavenly ministry of salvation that Jesus Christ alone performs for us. Christians now have something better than that priesthood.
- The LDS Church distorts the words of Jesus and other passages of the Bible to support its notion of priesthood.
This is an extremely important issue in LDS religion. I offer my analysis and response in the hope that some members of the LDS Church will take a good hard look at what they have been taught.