Church Doctrine 06, Church Organization, Intermediate Level 200

December 8, 2021

Scriptures in the New Testament mention offices in the Church organization of that day. Acts 13:1 talks of “prophets and teachers.” Acts 14:23 describes ordaining elders. In I Corinthians 12:28, the apostle Paul relates that “God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers.” Then in Ephesians 4:11–12, Paul recounts, “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.”

Luke 8:1‒3 explains that Jesus “went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him, and certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, . . . and Joanna the wife of Chuza Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others.”

The New Testament demonstrates the work of Church officers and members in action, both men and women. The restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ in the latter days has included the establishment of offices, all operating under priesthood authority, for both men and women.

By Study

The sixth Article of Faith of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints declares: “We believe in the same organization that existed in the Primitive Church, namely, apostles, prophets, pastors, teachers, evangelists, and so forth.” (The Pearl of Great Price, The Articles of Faith 1:6.)


Study chapters 5 to 15 of the Church’s General Handbook: Serving in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which deal with the organization of the Church in detail.

By Faith

Ephesians 2:19–22 reads, “Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; and are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; in whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.”


Because each of God’s children is unique, we may not always feel that we fit well into the congregation where we are assigned to worship or in the calling that we have received. Or we may not have a calling at all and feel neglected because we do not. We may even think it is someone else’s responsibility to make us feel that we belong.

Ponder Paul’s words in Ephesians noted above and Doctrine and Covenants 58:26‒29. Ask yourself what you can do to avoid being a “stranger” or outsider in your family and local congregation. What can you do to make your family and congregation grow “unto an holy temple.” How can you better become with them “an habitation of God through the Spirit.”

Focus on what you personally need to do, not what others could do for you. Then do it beginning this week.

Credit for the image at top of the page: Stock image 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.

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