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Prophetic AuthorityDemocratic Hierarchy and the Mormon Priesthood$
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Michael Hubbard MacKay

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780252043017

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2020

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252043017.001.0001

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The Development of Mormon Priesthood

The Development of Mormon Priesthood

(p.71) 5 The Development of Mormon Priesthood
Prophetic Authority

Michael Hubbard MacKay

University of Illinois Press

This chapter charts the emergence of Mormon priesthood through Smith’s restoration scripture and describes the institutional priesthood that defined Smith as the president of the high priesthood and ultimate appellate judge within a structure that came to include both a higher and a lower priesthood. The chapter explores Smith’s narrative of authority extending back in time before the garden of Eden and forward in time to Joseph Smith in the last dispensation. With the power of his prophetic voice, Smith recast the Bible and added the book of Moses, the Book of Mormon, and his own revelations to the revelatory foundation of his church. The chapter further charts the emergence of the term priesthood in Mormonism when Joseph Smith began to connect the Bible with his new restoration scripture that marked a genealogy of priesthood back to Adam. Through this lineage of power, Smith defined an authority traced from patriarch to patriarch, preceding hundreds of years of Catholic succession. Smith became the fountainhead of all things Mormon, distributing and sustaining all authority and power in a well-organized religious system.

Keywords:   Monarchy, Prophethood, Prophet, Priesthood, Ecclesiology, Clergy, Peter the Apostle, James the Apostle, John the Apostle, Mormon

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