From time to time I am constrained to say something that is beyond what I feel comfortable saying in a public venue. This is one of those times.
The content of this may not be for everyone. In fact, I think there can be a lot of mischief done by reading this if you are unprepared. Nevertheless, I’m constrained to cover this by Him who knows much better than I do – I readily recognize I am a fool. When something like this happens, I bury my own feelings and do what I’m told.
I pointed out a bit ago that Joseph Smith received the sealing authority in a revelation to him sometime between 1829 and 1843, the exact date is not known. The way in which he received this authority was by a direct revelation to him from heaven. The “voice of the Lord” came to Joseph making the declaration. At the same time Joseph’s calling and election were made sure. Here are the verses from Section 132:
45 For I have conferred upon you the keys and power of the priesthood, wherein I restore all things, and make known unto you all things in due time.
46 And verily, verily, I say unto you, that whatsoever you seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven; and whatsoever you bind on earth, in my name and by my word, saith the Lord, it shall be eternally bound in the heavens; and whosesoever sins you remit on earth shall be remitted eternally in the heavens; and whosesoever sins you retain on earth shall be retained in heaven.
47 And again, verily I say, whomsoever you bless I will bless, and whomsoever you curse I will curse, saith the Lord; for I, the Lord, am thy God.
48 And again, verily I say unto you, my servant Joseph, that whatsoever you give on earth, and to whomsoever you give any one on earth, by my word and according to my law, it shall be visited with blessings and not cursings, and with my power, saith the Lord, and shall be without condemnation on earth and in heaven.
49 For I am the Lord thy God, and will be with thee even unto the end of the world, and through all eternity; for verily I seal upon you your exaltation, and prepare a throne for you in the kingdom of my Father, with Abraham your father.
50 Behold, I have seen your sacrifices, and will forgive all your sins; I have seen your sacrifices in obedience to that which I have told you. Go, therefore, and I make a way for your escape, as I accepted the offering of Abraham of his son Isaac.
No one noticed this when I put it up, and no one has asked any questions about this. Therefore it is apparent that none of you have been prepared to receive what this is talking about. I am going to try to help you to see things by asking questions. I will not be answering them. I just offer them to you to ponder:
Did you notice this is referring to “power” and not authority?
Do you see any connection between this “power” and President Packer’s talk in General Conference about the church’s inability to disseminate “power” among the saints in the same way the church has been able to disseminate authority?
Does sealing authority and calling and election necessarily go together?
Can a man hold sealing authority if his calling and election have not been made sure?
How does this authority come to a man?
Must it come from the word of the Lord, declaring it from heaven, or can it come by some other kind of laying on of hands from another man?
Since Joseph received it from the declaration of God from heaven, and Nephi received it the very same way (see Helaman 10: 6-11), is this the only way to receive it?
If it comes from heaven alone, can any institution ever control this “power” generation after generation by handing it down from man to man?
Why did Joseph receive this power by the declaration of God from heaven, perhaps as early as 1829, outside the Temple and apart from the vision in Section 110?
Since Elijah’s words in Section 110: 13-16 do not mention the “power to seal” did Joseph really get the sealing “power” from the vision in the Kirtland Temple?
Does Elijah only confirm the process of restoring keys has completed, but sealing “power” came from somewhere else?
Is it possible that the institutional church has one understanding, but the truth and the scriptures teach another understanding?
If that is possible, then why have you not been studying things out for yourself to decide what the truth is concerning where this kind of “power” comes from?
Is this related to the “sealing” which is done, not by the church, but by the angels as revealed in D&C 77: 11?
Should you get a testimony of Christ, rather than recite merely that you “know the church is true?”
Can the church be true, and yet your soul not saved?
Do the ordinances of salvation, including sealing you up to eternal life, require you to have “power” given to you from heaven?
With respect to the words in D&C 121: 36: “That the rights of the priesthood are inseparably connected with the powers of heaven, and that the powers of heaven cannot be controlled nor handled only upon the principles of righteousness.”
Do these words relate to this same subject?
Do these words confirm that if priesthood “power” has been lost that the remaining priesthood “authority” cannot bind or seal?
Do the words “that they may be conferred upon us, it is true” (in 121: 37) confirm the very real distinction between “authority” and “power”?
Is President Packer trying to alert us to something very important missing in the current state of the church?
The questions are not intended to suggest any answer. They are food for thought. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is so important a subject that you ought to be thinking deeply about it. Joseph Smith said:
“[T]he things of God are of deep import; and time, and experience, and careful and ponderous and solemn thoughts can only find them out. Thy mind, O man! if thou wilt lead a soul unto salvation, must stretch as high as the utmost heavens, and search into and contemplate the darkest abyss, and the broad expanse of eternity-thou must commune with God. How much more dignified and noble are the thoughts of God, than the vain imaginations of the human heart! None but fools will trifle with the souls of men.” (DHC vol. 3, page 295.)
We should not be dealing with the Gospel at a superficial level. We should be ashamed of how we have been treating it. Again, Joseph said:
“How vain and trifling have been our spirits, our conferences, our councils, our meetings, our private as well as public conversations—too low, too mean, too vulgar, too condescending for the dignified characters of the called and chosen of God, according to the purposes of His will, from before the foundation of the world! We are called to hold the keys of the mysteries of those things that have been kept hid from the foundation of the world until now.” (Id.)
A religion that allows you to foolishly waste the days of your probation will not save you. That religion is NOT the faith that Abraham followed or that Jesus Christ taught. If you are attending “vain and trifling” meetings that are “low, mean, vulgar and condescending” then you must do something about your own education in the faith to obtain exaltation.
The path trod by the ancients is exactly the same path every saved soul must walk. Read this again.
I testify that you can know for a certainty the answer to these questions. Anyone can. Even the least of the Saints.
I wish all mankind might be saved. Neglect and indifference seem to be such prevailing impediments to the salvation of the souls of men that Satan must rejoice, look up at heaven with a great chain in his hands, and declare that he has bound all mankind! How little the world has changed since the time of Enoch.
Your soul is in jeopardy.