Good morning, evening, night...my friends and family. My first week in Bugembe has been a challenging one. Moving to a new area with a new companion always has been. Our teaching pool right now is very limited and there are not many people to progress towards baptism for us now. The answer is: TRACT!!! I have never been very good at tracting and I think Heavenly Father wants me to learn that valuable missionary skill. I'll write more next week, but for now I would like to share something spiritual with you.
This week I have been studying about the priesthood and about priesthood keys. I decided to study the conferring of priesthood keys throughout the dispensations as a prelude to the Restoration.
One of the greatest areas of confusion in modern (and even ancient) religion is the matter of authority. If we as human beings could ALL understand this eternal doctrine we would have "Save two churches only, the church of Christ, and the church of the devil" (1 Nephi 14:10) The truth is that the authority of God, namely the priesthood and its keys must be conferred by someone having the same authority. In the scriptures we find written accounts of the sealing keys of the priesthood being conferred in each dispensation. I would like to travel through time with you and visit each dispensation from the Old Testament all the way through our current dispensation.
Let us begin with the Old Testament prophet Elijah. Now we don't have any ancient record of him officially receiving the sealing keys, but through modern revelation we know this truth. "Also Elijah, unto whom I have committed the keys of the power of turning the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to the fathers." (D&C 27:9)
Next we have Peter in the New Testament dispensation. "I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of Heaven; and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shalt be bound in heaven." (Matt 16:19)
Following Christ's resurrection he visited his other sheep in the Americas. To Nephi he said these words. "I give unto you power that whatsoever ye shall seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven." (Helaman 10:7)
And last but certainly not least we have our current dispensation. To the prophet Joseph Smith the Lord said these words. "I say unto you, that whatsoever you seal on earth shall be sealed in heaven." (D&C 132:46) Through the ages our Heavenly Father has had a prophet on whom he has conferred the sealing keys of Heaven. I testify that Joseph Smith received those keys the same as Elijah, Peter, and Nephi. I testify that the keys have been passed from prophet to prophet and that Thomas S. Monson holds those keys today. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen
Love you guys!!!
|Church building in Bugembe (Yep, they have their own!!!)|