Reblogged from: Mormon Coffee blog

Note: in Judeo Christianity [both Judaism and Christianity] the Priesthood is the mechanism used for people interacting [a relationship] with God, the system of how we as sinful people approach and interact with the Holy God. The Priesthood is the framework, the rules and the mechanism for what is acceptable to God and also for what is unacceptable and not allowed to come into God’s holy presence.

Reblogged from: Mormon Coffee blog

The [LDS – Mormon] Priesthood of the Gods vs. the [Christian] Word [Authority] of God’s Power

Posted on April 11, 2013 by Aaron Shafovaloff

In my last post, “‘Go’ is enough”, I talked about the awesome “word of power” of Jesus Christ. The idea behind it is huge and I hope you’ll see the big picture with me.

In Mormonism, priesthood isn’t a product of God. Rather, God himself  [becoming a God] is a [final] product of the [LDS Temple] priesthood.

In Mormonism, [LDS Temple] priesthood is bigger than God himself: it is the [LDS Temple] system under which the genealogy of the Gods are governed and ordered and enabled.

But if God is actually and absolutely ultimate, then it doesn’t make sense to think of him beholden to a priesthood system greater than himself. It makes more sense for God to show that he can operate with effortless, raw power. With ultimate authority. With the flick of a finger. Or with, as Hebrews puts it, the “Word of His power.” (1:3)

God creates, sustains, heals, exorcises (casts out spirits), forgives, renames, resurrects, authorizes, and commissions ultimately by the effortless, raw “word of his power”. Always consistent with his own character, but never beholden to a system bigger than himself.

This has implications for how we view forgiveness, the work of the Holy Spirit, the work of the local church, the preaching of the gospel — everything. It also puts the focus rightly on belief: belief in the word of God himself. Belief in the power and the person and the promises of Jesus Christ.

The issue of grace can be understood as a set of dichotomies: Earning God’s favor vs. receiving God’s free favor. Us reaching up to God vs. God reaching down to us. Us working to please God vs. God working to save men. The need for man to atone for his own sins vs. the finished work of Jesus on the cross. These dichotomies are all powerful and proper. I think it’s also helpful to think about grace as a simple issue of authority:

Does Jesus Christ have the authority, with the Words of His mouth, to immediately forgive your sins?

Matthew 9:6 But that ye [sinners] may know that the Son of Man (Jesus Christ) hath Power (Authority) on earth to forgive sins [and providing some immediate proof of it by healing a sick man], then saith He (Jesus Christ) to the [man who was physically] sick of the palsy, Arise [walk], take up thy bed, and go unto thine house.

Matthew 8:5-13 And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto Him a centurion, beseeching Him, And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him. The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the Word [God’ authority] only, and my servant shall be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith [understanding of authority], no, not in Israel. And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with [saved] Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the Kingdom of Heaven. But the [disobedient] children of the kingdom [those not placing themselves under the direct authority of God] shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.

This is liberating. You have zero good reasons to be afraid of any religious [or cult] system that would keep you from this freedom.