Church Doctrine 05, Priesthood, Intermediate Level 200

November 29, 2021

In the New Testament, the Savior told His disciples, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you” (John 15:16). In other words, God calls His servants. After Jesus ascended into heaven following His resurrection, His disciples called and ordained others under divine direction. (See, e.g., Acts 1:15‒26.) You too, can be called and blessed by this power.

By Study

The fifth Article of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints affirms this doctrine: “We believe that a man must be called of God, by prophecy, and by the laying on of hands by those who are in authority, to preach the Gospel and administer in the ordinances thereof.” (The Pearl of Great Price, The Articles of Faith 1:5.)

Being called of God does not make a person infallible. Jesus told his twelve apostles, “Have not I chosen you twelve, and one of you is a devil?” (John 6:70). After His crucifixion, His disciples sought revelation on whom to ordain in place of Judas Iscariot, “that he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell” (Acts 1:25).

Even though Church leaders can make mistakes, it is the duty of Church members to sustain them “in all patience and faith” (Doctrine and Covenants 21:5). The Lord has appointed His leaders collectively to counsel and correct each other, and with them alone is the responsibility for judging and taking any necessary actions (see, e.g., Doctrine and Covenants 107:78 – 84).


Study the Gospel Topics essay “Priesthood” and all of the other linked topics, scripture references, scripture study resources, messages from Church leaders, videos, and learning resources, which are quite extensive. Study also the website “Women and Priesthood” and all of its connected resources.

By Faith

Both women and men enjoy the blessings of priesthood power. The Church’s General Handbook of Instructions says, “The Melchizedek Priesthood is ‘the Holy Priesthood, after the Order of the Son of God’ (Doctrine and Covenants 107:3). It is the power by which the sons and daughters of God can become like Him (see Doctrine and Covenants 84:19–21; 132:19–20).”


Study President Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s April 2011 general conference address titled “Your Potential, Your Privilege.” President Uchtdorf relates that “too often our actions suggest that we live far beneath [our] potential.” Ponder what changes you can make in your life to better fulfill your potential in accessing power in the priesthood for yourself and those you love. Then make one change this week.

Credit for the image at top of the page: Gustave Dore, Jesus healing the sick, public domain, copied from

Author: Richard E. Turley Jr.

Richard E. Turley Jr. served for twenty-two years as managing director of the Historical Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and eight years as Assistant Church Historian and Recorder. He also served as managing director of the Family History, Public Affairs, and Church Communication Departments.

Related Posts