Friday, October 27, 2017

Moroni 3: The Six-and-a-half-th Article of Faith

Moroni continues to cover some important stuff that bafflingly had not been included in his essential summary of the Nephite records.

The present-day LDS church is proud to have the same organization that existed in the primitive church.  In addition to being in the Articles of Faith, this sentiment was the basis for a talk by Tad Callister establishing modern mainstream Mormonism as the legitimate continuation of Christ's gospel.  Normally this claim refers to Jesus's church in the old world, but it's also used—usually internally—to reference the church Jesus established among the Nephites, too.

But then there's this chapter, demonstrating that this was a different organization.  The disciples  (a term which seems intended to be interchangeable with the term apostles) are also referred to as elders.  How many of today's Quorum of the Twelve are mere elders?

This chapter covers the ordaining of teachers and priests without any mention of deacons.  Or high priests.  Or bishops.  Or stake presidents.  Or seventies.  In fact, it doesn't even mention that there are two divisions of the priesthood (Aaronic and Melchizidek), which are pretty important and also common knowledge in the present-day church.  But at least it mentions the laying on of hands, so we can begrudge a few points for occasional continuity.  But as far as the hierarchy of the church and the structure of the priesthood are concerned, this is not the same thing at all.   It's like Italian and Latin.  Obviously they have some similarities and there are even some things that line up almost perfectly.  But if you tell anyone that Italian and Latin are the same language you won't find anyone willing to agree with you.

No comments:

Post a Comment