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Joseph Smith did not have the Priesthood
and is a False Prophet
"Kelly Powers" email@example.com
This information is for those of you who are currently in the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints, and those of you who are Christians wanting to know accurate information that pertains to the claims of Joseph Smith being a true prophet of God. For the record this information is for examining the claims of Joseph Smith in light of what he has claimed and what is taught by those of the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints. This information is not to insult or put anyone down or to attack anyone, but to truly investigate the information for truth and let you decide for yourselves whether or not Joseph Smith could truly be a prophet of God.
Those of you who are active in the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints my desire is to give you evidence that will make think and consider this subject for yourselves. All that I ask of you is to be open and investigate it for yourselves. Those of you who are inactive my desire is the same for you as well, wishing for you to truly investigate this information to see whether or not Joseph Smith is truly a prophet of God. Those of you who are Christians my desire is to present accurate information on the major issue concerning Joseph Smith and the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints as to him being a true prophet of God and you being able to share this information with other Christians and Mormons..
Was Joseph Smith a true prophet? Was Joseph Smith a false prophet? The following information will be examining what the Mormon Church teaches Joseph Smith's priesthood and lineage. This information is not to insult or put anyone down or to attack anyone, but to truly investigate the information for truth. We will let you decide for yourselves whether or not Joseph Smith is a true prophet or false prophet.Setting The Stage
The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints believe that they are the restored Church here on earth in which God has brought forth a prophet to restore the lost Church. This prophet is named Joseph Smith who claimed that God has called him to bring back God's Church in these last days, and to establish the true authority of God here on earth. Joseph Smith taught that there was a great Apostasy of the Church when the Apostles died some 1900 years ago, and for over 1700 years there was no true Church of God here on earth. In 1820, Joseph Smith being 14 years old, was wanting to know which Church was right to join and was praying in the woods. Joseph Smith in his prayer was visited by God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, and told to join none of them. Joseph Smith was told that they were all wrong and were an abomination in God's sight, and taught the doctrines of men. (Joseph Smith History 1:16-20)
Joseph Smith's testimony states he was going to be the one to restore the true Church of God here on earth and bring God's authority (Priesthood) back. Joseph Smith was given what is called the priesthood authority in 1829, and within a year he established the Mormon Church known today as the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints. What exactly is the priesthood? The following references will give some light on what the priesthood is according to the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints.
"It is nothing more nor less than the power of God delegated to man by which man can act in the earth for the salvation of the human family, in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost, and act legitimately; not assuming that authority, nor borrowing it from generations that are dead and gone, but authority that has been given in this day in which we live by ministering angels and spirits from above, direct from the presence of Almighty God, who have come to the earth in our day and restored the Priesthood to the children of men, by which they may baptize for the remission of sins and lay on hands for the reception of the Holy Ghost, and by which they can remit sin, with the sanction and blessing of Almighty God." (Gospel Doctrine, page 139, Joseph Fielding Smith, 1939)
"What I mean by the Holy Priesthood is that authority which God has delegated to man, by which he may speak the will of God as if the angels were here to speak it themselves; by which men are empowered to bind on earth and it shall be bound in heaven, and to loose on earth and it shall be loosed in heaven; by which the words of man, spoken in the exercise of that power, become the word of the Lord, and the law of God unto the people, scripture, and divine commands." (Gospel Doctrine, page 140, Joseph Fielding Smith, 1939)
"1.Priesthood is power, the power of God, a vital source of eternal strength and energy delegated to men to act in all things for the well-being of mankind, both in the world and out of it (DS 3:80; Romney, p. 43). 2.Priesthood is authority, the exclusive right to act in the name of God as his authorized agents and to perform ordinances for the purpose of opening certain spiritual blessings to all individuals. 3.Priesthood is the right and responsibility to preside within the organizational structure of the Church, but only in a manner consistent with the agency of others. 4.Sometimes the word priesthood is used to refer to the men of the Church in general (as in "the priesthood will meet in the chapel")." (Encyclopedia of Mormonism, page 1134, 1992)
According to Mormonism the priesthood is the power of God on earth to speak in His name, to teach in His name, to baptize in His name, to perform ordinances, and many other things. The Mormon Church teaches that with the ascension of Jesus going back to the Father and the death of the Apostles the priesthood was lost and the Church went into complete Apostasy. They teach that it was not until Joseph Smith was given the priesthood authority in 1829 and established the Church in 1830 that God's Church and authority was restored here on the earth again. This explains the importance of the priesthood authority according the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints.
Joseph Smith's Lineage
According to the Book of Mormon and the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints Joseph Smith is from the tribe of Ephraim or the lineage of Ephraim. Who is Ephraim according to the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints?
"Ephraim was the son of Joseph and Asenath and the younger brother of Manasseh (Genesis 41:50-52)...The Book of Mormon records that Joseph of old "obtained a promise of the Lord, that out of the fruit of his loins the Lord God would raise up a righteous branch unto the house of Israelto be remembered in the covenants of the Lord" (2 Nephi 3:5). Further, a "choice seer" would arise from Joseph's descendants who would "do a work for the fruit of [Joseph's] loins, his brethren, which shall be of great worth unto them, even to the bringing of them to the knowledge of the covenants which I [the Lord] have made with thy fathers" (2 Nephi 3:7). Many Latter-day Saints believe that they are of the branch of Ephraim, of whom Joseph prophesied (2 Nephi 3:5-16; D&C 133:30-34) and that the Prophet Joseph Smith is the "choice seer" (3 Nephi 3:6)...In the last days, Ephraim's descendants have the privilege and responsibility to bear the message of the restoration of the gospel to the world and to gather scattered Israel...For Latter-day Saints, identification of a person's lineage in latter-day Covenant Israel is made under the hands of inspired Patriarchs through patriarchal blessings that declare lineage. Elder John A. Widtsoe, an Apostle, declared, "In giving a blessing the patriarch may declare our lineage-that is, that we are of Israel, therefore of the family of Abraham, and of a specific tribe of Jacob. In the great majority of cases, Latter-day Saints are of the tribe of Ephraim, the tribe to which has been committed the leadership of the Latter-day work." (Encyclopedia of Mormonism, pages 461-462, 1992)
According to the Book of Mormon in 2 Nephi 3:5-15 Joseph Smith is from the loins (lineage) of the Joseph in Genesis 41:45-52, and the Latter-day Saints believe that they too are of that same lineage. Ephraim is the tribe of which the blessings of God come through according to the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints, and it is through them that the authority has been given to preach the Gospel. (Their gospel) Why is this information important to know about? The Latter-day Saints (most of them) claim to be of the tribe of Ephraim as well as what is stated concerning Joseph Smith in 2 Nephi 3:5-15 on being the one to come from the loins of Joseph. (Gen. 41:45-52) He is said to be the modern day prophet to restore God's Church and priesthood here on earth again. The following information will show why this is very important and the purpose of this article.
Restrictions on Who Can Receive the Priesthood
The Latter-Day Saints teach that the priesthood of God is eternal and throughout the ages has been here on earth at various times. Prior to 1978 the priesthood was not for all people to be able to receive or partake of, but was restricted from certain people. The Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints as well as their Scriptures teach that prior to 1978 those of the Negro race (Those with black skin/ dark skin) could not hold the priesthood, but that they were cursed of God not being able to receive it. They teach when Cain murdered his brother Abel he became (Genesis 4) cursed by God and was given black skin. And from then to 1978 those of that lineage could not have the priesthood authority no matter what because of them being of that cursed lineage.
"Since the Lord appeared unto Cain and conversed with him many times before Cain killed Abel, Cain must have held the Priesthood.9 God said unto Cain, "For from this time forth thou shalt be the father of his [Satan's] lies; thou shalt be called Perdition;"10 and the Lord cursed Cain with severe cursings. One of these cursings was a mark placed upon Cain, which mark would be carried by his posterity throughout all generations. According to the teachings of the Pearl of Great Price, this mark was a black skin." (Pearl of Great Price Commentary, Book of Abraham Chapter 1 page 140, Milton R. Hunter of the First Council of the Seventy. 1951)
"But the greatest curse of all that came upon Cain and his descendants was that they were "cursed as pertaining to the Priesthood," that is, the entire lineage "could not have the right of Priesthood"...Joseph Smith identified the negroes as the descendants of Cain...Therefore it is due to the teachings of the Pearl of Great Price and the Prophet Joseph Smith and the other early leaders of the Church that the negro today is barred from the Priesthood." (Pearl of Great Price Commentary, Book of Abraham Chapter 1 page 141, Milton R. Hunter of the First Council of the Seventy. 1951
"Those who were less valiant in pre-existence and who thereby had certain spiritual restrictions imposed upon them during mortality are known to us as the negroes. Such spirits are sent to earth through the lineage of Cain, the mark put upon him for his rebellion against God and his murder of Abel being a black skin. (Moses 5:16-41; 7:8,12,22.) Noah's son Ham married Egyptus, a descendant of Cain, thus preserving the negro lineage through the flood. (Abra. 1:20-27.) Negroes in this life are denied the priesthood; under no circumstances can they hold this delegation of authority from the Almighty." (Mormon Doctrine, page 527, 1966 Edition)
"In all past ages and until recent times in this dispensation, the Lord did not offer the priesthood to the Negroes. However, on June 1, 1978, in the Salt Lake Temple, in the presence of the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve, President Spencer W. Kimball received a revelation from the Lord directing that the gospel and the priesthood should now go to all men without reference to race or color." (Mormon Doctrine, page 527, 1979 Revised Edition)
"According to the book of Abraham (now part of the Pearl of Great Price), the descendants of Cain were to be denied the priesthood of God (Abr. 1:23-26)." (Encyclopedia of Mormonism, page 125)
These references are from Mormon resources which explains why blacks (Negroes) could not have the priesthood, that is because they were of the lineage of Cain. All those who are in the lineage of Cain (Blacks, Negroes, Egyptians) could not hold the priesthood according to the book of Abraham chapter 1 verses 20-27 until 1978, but according to the Mormon Church God gave the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints a new revelation granting the priesthood authority to all races without reference to color. (Official Declaration 2) It is interesting to note that the book 'Mormon Doctrine' prior to 1978 stated that Negroes under no circumstances could not hold the priesthood since they were from the lineage of Cain (1966 Edition), but in the 1979 Revised Edition it was changed and those comments were taken out.
All this information has a specific purpose for seeing the big picture concerning Joseph Smith and the claims of him being the one to restore God's Church and authority (priesthood) back on earth. The following will reveal that Joseph Smith according to the Pearl of Great Price, the Bible, and other references that Joseph Smith could of not had the priesthood at all. Putting it plain Joseph Smith couldn't be a true prophet of God since he did not even have the right to preach or teach anything because he did not have the priesthood. (Their priesthood)
Joseph Smith Did Not Have the Priesthood
The purpose of all this information is to give the evidence concerning Joseph Smith's testimony as to whether or not he was a true latter day prophet of God. What has been shared so far is the claims of Joseph Smith being a latter day prophet to restore God's Church and authority (priesthood) on earth again, and the things that pertained to what the priesthood is and those who could not hold it. This section of information will demonstrate that Joseph Smith couldn't have had the priesthood (Their priesthood) to teach, preach or be a true latter-day prophet.
The Book of Abraham 1:20-27 declares that all those who were in the lineage of Cain could not have the priesthood and spoke of those who were cursed through the lineage of Ham and his wife Egyptus. Those who could not hold the priesthood are Negroes, Egyptians, Ethiopians, and all those who were from the lineage of Ham and Egyptus. What does that have to do with Joseph Smith? The following information will demonstrate that Joseph Smith could not of had the priesthood according to what the Mormons scholars have written, the Standard Works, and other Bible sources.
"45 And Pharaoh called Joseph's name Zaphnath-paaneah. And he gave him Asenath, the daughter of Potipherah, priest of On, for his wife. And Joseph went out over the land of Egypt...50 And two sons were born to Joseph before the years of famine came, whom Asenath the daughter of Potipherah priest of On bore to him. 51 And Joseph called the name of the first-born Manasseh, saying, For God has made me forget all my toil and all my father's house. 52 And the name of the second he called Ephraim, saying, For God has caused me to be fruitful in the land of my affliction." (Genesis 41:45&50-52)
Joseph Smith is said to be from the lineage of Ephraim, and Ephraim is the son of Joseph and Asenath. Joseph was a Hebrew man and Asenath was a Egyptian woman. So Manasseh and Ephraim were both half Hebrew and half Egyptian from their parents and all those who come through the lineage of Ephraim will be in the lineage that was cursed from being able to have the priesthood. (According Mormon Church Scriptures in Abraham 1:20-27) Looking at the text it is clear that Asenath was an Egyptian woman because her father was Potipherah who was an Egyptian priest of the city called On, which was the major place of Egyptian worship unto the sun-god. This information is validated by many scholarly works.
"ASENATH [AS ih nath] the Egyptian wife of Joseph and the mother of Manasseh and Ephraim (Gen. 41:45, 5052; 46:20). Asenath was the daughter of Poti-Pherah, priest of On. Pharaoh himself may have arranged the marriage between Joseph and Asenath to help Joseph adjust to life in Egypt" (Nelsons Bible Dictionary - Asenath
"ON - An ancient city of Lower Egypt in the Nile Delta on the east bank of the Nile River, about 31 kilometers (19 miles) north of Memphis and about 10 kilometers (6 miles) northeast of Cairo. Because On was the principal seat of the cult of Ra whose devotees worshiped the sun-god, the Greeks called the city Heliopolis, or "City of the Sun" (Is. 19:18, NRSV)... Asenath, the Egyptian wife of Joseph, was the daughter of Poti-Pherah, a priest of On (Gen. 41:45, 50; 46:20)." (Nelsons Bible Dictionary - City of On)
"On--"It was at On that Joseph wooed and won the dark-skinned Asenath, the daughter of the high priest of its great temple." (Easton's Bible Dictionary - City of On)
"On - Egyptian place name meaning, "city of the pillar," called in Greek Heliopolis or "city of the sun" and in Hebrew as Beth-shemesh, "city of the sun" (Jer. 43:13) and Aven. It was the cult center for the worship of the sun-god, Ra (Atum)...Joseph's Egyptian wife came from On (Gen.41:45), her father serving as priest in the temple there." (Holman Bible Dictionary - City of On)
"Potiphera - an Egyptian, priest of On, father of Asenath, the wife whom Pharaoh gave to Joseph." (King James Hebrew Old Testament Lexicon and Strongs online - #6319)
"On - city in lower Egypt, bordering land of Goshen, center of sun-worship, residence of Potipherah (priest of On and father-in-law of Joseph)" (Kings James Hebrew Old Testament Lexicon and Strongs online - #204)
These sources validate that Asenath was an Egyptian woman and that her father was an Egyptian priest of the Egyptian city called On. What is important to note about these sources is when they were done they were not written in response to prove Joseph Smith or the Mormon Church wrong, but to give accurate information on people, places, and other things according to Biblical history. The following references will prove beyond any doubt that this information is accurate.
"Pharaoh's claim to the priesthood was invalid, because he insisted with great force that it was the patriarchal priesthood of Noah, received through the line of Ham. (Abr. 1:25-27; above, pp. 133f.) His earthly rule was blessed (Abr. 1:26), but he could not, of course, claim patriarchal lineage through his mother." (Hugh Nibley, Abraham In Egypt 1981, pages 188-189)
"The episode in the Genesis Apocryphon in which Abraham heals the ailing Pharaoh by laying his hands upon his head and blessing him has caused much head-scratching among scholars and clergy (123: Col. XX, 18-29); that ordinance marks both the end of the King's attempt to raise up a royal line by Sarah, and the acknowledgment of Abraham's true relationship to Sarah the Queen (233: Apr. 1970, 80-82). At many points this relates to the classic story of the marriage of Joseph and Asenath (275:497-538), which explains the mingling and reconciling of the blood of Ham with the blood of Israel. For Asenath, it will be recalled, was the daughter of the high priest of Heliopolis (Gen. 41:45; 46:20), and hence of the pure line of Ham; she was also the wife of Joseph and the mother of our own vaunted ancestor Ephraim (Gen. 41:50-52; 46:20)." (Hugh Nibley, Abraham In Egypt 1981, page 215)
"Whom did Joseph marry? He married Asenath, and this takes us right into the Book of Mormon. Asenath had two sons, you know. One of them was Manasseh, and the Book of Mormon tells us that Lehi was a direct descendant of Manasseh. The other was Ephraim of whom we claim to be descendants. They were the sons of this Asenath who was the daughter of the high priest of Heliopolis. Here is the Delta which goes immediately up here along the coast. Here is the Red Sea down here. But the Delta goes here. At the base of the Delta is Memphis, and here is Cairo. Out toward the airport of Cairo is Heliopolis. That's the On of the Bible. This is the most sacred, the most ancient, the most enduring shrine in the whole ancient world. This is the great sun center of all mankind...Joseph married Asenath, who was the daughter of the high priest of Heliopolis and a direct descendant of Ham. And we are descendants of Ephraim, while Lehi's people are descendants of Manasseh." (Hugh Nibley, Teachings of the Book of Mormon--Semester 1: Transcripts of Lectures Presented to an Honors Book of Mormon Class at Brigham Young University, 1988--1990 Provo: Foundation for Ancient Re 20. vol.1, p.20)
"Lehi was a descendant of Manasseh, who was half Egyptian. His mother was Asenath, who was of the blood of Ham, a pure Egyptian. She had to be-her father was a high priest of Heliopolis. [Lehi] was a descendant of Manasseh whose twin brother was Ephraim. We claim that we are descended from him. He was also a son of Asenath, the Egyptian woman." (Hugh Nibley, Teachings of the Book of Mormon--Semester 1: Transcripts of Lectures Presented to an Honors Book of Mormon Class at Brigham Young University, 1988--1990 Provo: Foundation for Ancient Re 309. vol. 2, p.309)
"He had three wives. One wife was Sarah, who is the mother of all Semites. But he also married Hagar, who is usually called "the daughter of Pharaoh." She was an Egyptian woman. Ishmael was his son, and Ishmael got the very same promise that Isaac got-that he would be the father of many nations. This mixes in with our Book of Mormon because Lehi was of Manasseh. Ephraim and Manasseh were the sons of Asenath who was the [daughter] of the high priest of Heliopolis in Egypt. She was the pure blood of Ham. She was a princess in Egypt, and we're descended from her." (Hugh Nibley, Teachings of the Book of Mormon--Semester 1: Transcripts of Lectures Presented to an Honors Book of Mormon Class at Brigham Young University, 1988--1990 Provo: Foundation for Ancient Re 84. -vol.3, p.84)
Hugh Nibley who is considered to be one of the most gifted scholars of the Latter-Day Saints today, and he clearly proves that the information concerning Asenath being an Egyptian woman is accurate and is not anti-Mormon. From the Foundation for Ancient Research and Mormon Studies known as FARMS which is an Institute of Brigham Young's University for the Study and Preservation of Ancient Religious Texts states the following concerning Hugh Nibley: "One of the most gifted scholars in the LDS Church today. He graduated summa cum laude from UCLA and completed his Ph.D. as a University Fellow at UC Berkeley. He taught at Claremont College in California before serving in military intelligence in World War II. Since 1946 he has been associated with and taught at Brigham Young University."
Hugh Nibley stated that Pharaoh could not of held the priesthood because of him being in the lineage of Ham. Remembering what the book of Abraham 1:20-27 states concering the lineage of Ham and Egyptus being cursed and those in it could not hold the priesthood. Hugh Nibley confirms this information being true and goes on to state that Asenath was an Egyptian woman and from the lineage of Ham. Hugh Nibley states that Lehi is a descendant of Manassah who was half Egyptian and that Asenath was pure Egyptian, thus proving Ephraim is half Egyptian. Hugh Nibley states that those in the Church of Jesus Christ Latter-Day Saints are descendants of Ephraim and that his mother was an Egyptian woman married to Joseph. Hugh Nibley states that Abraham had three wives one of them being Hagar who was an Egyptian woman. All this information validates the fact that Joseph Smith and all those who claim to be from the lineage of Joseph or Asenath's two sons (Manassah and Ephraim) could not of had the priesthood before 1978 because the law of God was not changed yet, and that this was affective for all those living before 1978. By what has been shown Joseph Smith could of not held the priesthood prior to 1978 because he was of that lineage that was cursed that could not hold the priesthood.
Former Mormon prophet (10th President) Joseph Fielding Smith said the following concerning this topic: "If Abraham, Joseph, and Moses had married Negro wives their descendants would have been denied the priesthood according to the word of the Lord to Abraham. Had such a thing happened the Lord would not have called Israel as a chosen people, neither would he have chosen the Prophet Joseph Smith and given him the keys of authority for the Dispensation of the Fulness of Times, as he was a descendant of Joseph and of Abraham." (Smith, Joseph Fielding. Answers to Gospel Questions. vols. 1-4. Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1957-1966, page 169) There was a question to whether or not Abraham, Joseph, and Moses to whether or not they had married Negroes as their wives, and this former Mormon prophet stated that if they had done this their descendants would of been denied the priesthood, and if that did had happen then even Joseph Smith would of been denied the priesthood. Joseph Fielding Smith validates the facts by his comments concerning Joseph Smith because the Joseph in Genesis 41:45-52 did have an Egyptian wife, and thus Joseph Smith did not have the keys of authority for the Dispensation of the Fullness of times because he was a descendant of Joseph.
If you having any questions or comments concerning any of this information, or other questions concerning the Latter-Day Saints, or things on Christianity and knowing Jesus Christ personally and being set free from all your sins then please let us know. May God bless all who read this and may it be used to glorify God and lead people to the Lord Jesus.