By definition priesthood is: priest·hood (noun) the office or position of a priest.
A priest holds the rights to the priesthood which is the eternal power and authority of our Heavenly Father, or God. When I am talking about what priesthood is in this post, I am meaning it as: The power of God. This is the power by which all things are done and created. God can and does share this power with His children on this earth, men and woman alike, and this post will be about:
- How one loses or does NOT have the power of God
- What someone has to do to have the power of God
- Things you receive from heaven when having this power
- What it looks like when one actually has the power, not just rights to it
There is a difference between authority and power. No man can give another priesthood, that only comes from God himself. A person can have the rights conferred. God confers and gives rights to His power to many people, but it is another to actually have the power and function in it.
1. How one looses the rights to the power of God
If a man thinks they have been given the rights to the priesthood already, how can he loose those rights? The Latter Day Saint Church goes by this revelation on priesthood power. In Doctrine and Covenants 121: 34-37 (the scripture follows in italics)
Behold, there are many called, but few are chosen. And why are they not chosen?
Many are called is stating that many are given the rights to Gods power. He wants as many of His children to function with His power. Few actually attain it, and the next verse explains why:
Because their hearts are set so much upon the things of this world, and aspire to the honors of men, that they do not learn this one lesson—
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.
You can not be in the attitude of controlling a person, God forces nothing. This is about Agency, the sacred choice to choose for everything, God simply invites. He invites the elements to combine, He invites us to learn and change, He invites the mountain to move. It is a beautiful dance between Him and the elements to create. Controlling anything is NOT a principal of righteousness. One must function in honoring the Agency of everything.
That they may be conferred upon us, it is true; but when we undertake to cover our sins, or to gratify our pride, our vain ambition, or to exercise control or dominion or compulsion upon the souls of the children of men, in any degree of unrighteousness, behold, the heavens withdraw themselves; the Spirit of the Lord is grieved; and when it is withdrawn, Amen to the priesthood or the authority of that man.
Here it is: How to know if a person has priesthood or not:
If in your life you function in any of these things in any area, relationships, home, work or in any amount, you do not have the rights to the power of God.
- When one undertakes to cover their sins. What does this mean? To cover is to hide, to hide is to be in secret. So when one is being in secret to cover their sins, they have no rights to the priesthood.
- Gratify our pride. When someone is gratifying themselves, it is in a selfish nature, right? Seeking to get gain for selfish reasons because of the ambitions or intents, desires, dreams of the heart. They are in vain and for naught when done in selfishness to protect the “idol of the ego” we have built.
- Exercise control, dominion, or compulsion upon anyone. There is a difference between control and govern, to control you are taking away someones agency and that is a major one. We can not be in control, dominion or compulsion in the least degree or we do not have any authority/rights to Gods priesthood, let alone the power.
- In ANY degree. Even just the tiniest bit of violating someones agency, being in secret or any of the things noted above, gets you kicked out.
Behold, ere he is aware, he is left unto himself, to kick against the pricks, to persecute the saints, and to fight against God.
We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.
When this person becomes aware, he is left unto himself and he is not happy about not being about to have the power of God to control. There it says, it is in our nature. When someone gains a bit of authority in any area of their life, they start to CONTROL. Like it was stated above the powers of heaven can not be controlled. Man tries and force people do to things they way they want it done, enforcing punishment, threats, and manipulation to have it their way. Once this is done in ANY degree, they no longer have any rights conferred or access to the power.
Hence many are called, but few are chosen.
It is VERY hard to not control. Many of us do not realize how much we violate the agency of people around us every damn day. These rules are very narrow and very easily violated. This is why you do not see many that have the fruits of having the powers of heaven in their lives and using it for Gods purposes to be fulfilled.
2. This is what someone has to function under to have the power of God:
No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned; By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile—
This is how we stay away from control. We invite everything and everyone around us like God does. Through love, meekness and using pure knowledge to gently persuade others and teach them with understanding. Then standing still, having long suffering while they choose to exercise their agency.
3. What things do you receive from having the power of God in your life?
The fruits of having this power would look like this: As stated in Doctrine and Covenants 107: 19-20
To have the privilege of receiving the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, to have the heavens opened unto them, to commune with the general assembly and church of the Firstborn, and to enjoy the communion and presence of God the Father, and Jesus the mediator of the new covenant.
All of these blessings follow those that have the power, receiving mysteries of heaven, heavens opened to them-this being dreams, visions and more, to commune with the angels and enjoy communion and the presence of God the Father and Jesus the mediator! It says it right here, you should be enjoying the presence of Jesus and the Father.
The power and authority of the lesser, or Aaronic Priesthood, is to hold the keys of the ministering of angels, and to administer in outward ordinances, the letter of the gospel, the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, agreeable to the covenants and commandments.
Also you are administering the outward ordinances for the cleansing of the body for your fellow men. All of these things are things that you receive and do if you have Gods power. Now what does your life look like when you function with Gods power? The prophet Melchizedek which this priesthood is named after in the LDS church is a perfect example…
4. What does it look like having this power in your life?
JST, Genesis 14:25–34. Compare Genesis 14:18–20
25 And Melchizedek lifted up his voice and blessed Abram.
26 Now Melchizedek was a man of faith, who wrought righteousness; and when a child he feared God, and stopped the mouths of lions, and quenched the violence of fire.
27 And thus, having been approved of God, he was ordained an high priest after the order of the covenant which God made with Enoch,
28 It being after the order of the Son of God; which order came, not by man, nor the will of man; neither by father nor mother; neither by beginning of days nor end of years; but of God;
29 And it was delivered unto men by the calling of his own voice, according to his own will, unto as many as believed on his name.
30 For God having sworn unto Enoch and unto his seed with an oath by himself; that every one being ordained after this order and calling should have power, by faith, to break mountains, to divide the seas, to dry up waters, to turn them out of their course;
31 To put at defiance the armies of nations, to divide the earth, to break every band, to stand in the presence of God; to do all things according to his will, according to his command, subdue principalities and powers; and this by the will of the Son of God which was from before the foundation of the world.
32 And men having this faith, coming up unto this order of God, were translated and taken up into heaven.
33 And now, Melchizedek was a priest of this order; therefore he obtained peace in Salem, and was called the Prince of peace.
34 And his people wrought righteousness, and obtained heaven, and sought for the city of Enoch which God had before taken, separating it from the earth, having reserved it unto the latter days, or the end of the world;
I think this pretty much says it all, our life will look like this. We are supposed to be doing all of this, if you think you have power and you are not seeing these things in your life, or doing any of these things, you might want to check and see if you have violated any of the things above in section 1, in ANY degree.
How would one go about getting the rights and power back from God?
We all mess up right? Especially when we have ignorance. What happens when we mess up? Well, we first have to recognize it with pure knowledge, and then own up to it because that is the only way we change. We ask God to change us, recognize and ask God to give us another chance. God granting you mercy has a stipulation of true repentance. You can grow in a relationship with God and grow in His power and His trust. This relationship is established until the day when He trusts you completely and you are given the sealing powers.
We then do the work of God upon the earth with His power, the very powers of heaven, and call them down in our own lives, and in the lives of those around us. Moving mountains, healing, raising the dead, quenching fires, stopping earthquakes, tornadoes, dividing the waters, and subduing the dark principalities and powers on this earth by crushing their heads. All that God desires us to do, until His work upon the earth is complete.