Question: In what manner was the Melchizedek Priesthood restored?

Table of Contents

Question: In what manner was the Melchizedek Priesthood restored?

The ordination to the office of Elder via the higher priesthood could not occur until the church had been established

Similar to this origination complication of baptism and membership, the ordination to the office of Elder via the higher priesthood could not occur until the church had been established. After the church was officially established we have the following evidences that Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery had already received the higher priesthood:

  1. Aug 1830, the Lord spoke to the Prophet Joseph Smith of “Peter, and James, and John, whom I have sent unto you, by whom I have ordained you and confirmed you to be apostles, and especial witnesses of my name, and bear the keys of your ministry and of the same things which I revealed unto them.” D&C 27:12
  2. Apr 1830, “And to Oliver Cowdery, who was also called of God, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to be the second elder of this church, and ordained under his hand.” D&C 20:2-3
  3. “Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery sought after this higher authority, and the Lord gave it to them, before the rise of this Church, sending to them Peter, James and John. What for? To bestow upon them the Apostleship.” -Elder Parley P. Pratt [1]
  4. Hiram Page, a son-in-law of Peter Whitmer Sr., and one who was present on the day of the Church’s 6 April 1830 organization, later confirmed that “Peter, James and John” had come and bestowed the Holy Priesthood “before the 6th of April 1830.” [2]
  5. “I know that Joseph received his Apostleship from Peter, James, and John, before a revelation on the subject was printed, and he never had a right to organize a Church before he was an Apostle.” -Brigham Young [3]

Notes

  1. Orson Pratt, Journal of Discourses 16:294-295.
  2. Letter of Hiram Page to “Brother Wm. [William E. McLellin],” 4 March 1848, Fishing River, Missouri, Second Part, RLDS Archives, Independence, Missouri.
  3. Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 1:137.; emphasis added.