Changes in the Doctrine and Covenants – Part 11
By: Dr. Thomas Figart
|By: Marvin W. Cowan; ©2013|
|The Bible defines scripture in 2 Timothy 3:16 as “inspired” or “God breathed” and “profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness.” Isaiah 40:8 also says, “The word of our God shall stand forever.” In other words, when God speaks, He doesn’t change what He revealed.|
Changes in the Doctrine & Covenants – Part 11
The Bible defines scripture in 2 Timothy 3:16 as “inspired” or “God breathed” and “profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction and instruction in righteousness.” Isaiah 40:8 also says, “The word of our God shall stand forever.” In other words, when God speaks, He doesn’t change what He revealed. Joseph Smith claimed his revelations published in the 1833 Book of Commandments (B. of C.) came from God, but two years later when the same revelations were published in the Doctrine and Covenants (D. & C.), many were changed. The revelation in the 1833 B. of C. chapter 24 became Section 20 in the1835 D. & C.
Our last article showed some changes in that revelation and we will show more changes in it now. We quote the D. & C. and highlight words added to it that aren’t in chapter 24 of the original 1833 B. of C. and use bold type with a line through the words deleted from the B. of C. that aren’t in the D. & C. Our last article ended with D. & C. 20:16, so we begin with D. & C. 20:17.
D. & C. 20:17 says, “Wherefore By these things we know that there is a God in heaven, who is infinite and eternal, from everlasting to everlasting the same unchangeable God, the maker framer of heaven and earth, and all things that which are in them is. (18) And that he created man, male and female, and after his own image, and in his own likeness created he them. (19) And gave unto the children of men them commandments that they should love and serve him, the only living and true God, and that he should be the only being whom they should worship. (20) But by the transgression of those holy laws, man became sensual and devilish, and became fallen man.” The next four verses deleted the word “that” three times and “he” once, but otherwise the content is the same. Verse 25 continues: (25) “Therefore, That as many as would believe and were be baptized in his holy name, endured endure in faith to the end, should be saved—(26) Not only those who believed after he came in the meridian of time, in the flesh, but all those, from the beginning Yea even as many as were before he came, in the flesh who believed in the words of the holy prophets, who spake as they were inspired by the gift of the Holy Ghost, who truly testified of him in all things, should have eternal life.” Verses 27 through 33 are the same except in verse 28 “is” is changed to “are.”
Verse 34 continues: (34) Yea, and even he that is let those who are sanctified take heed also. (35) And we know, that these things are true and according agreeable to the revelation revelations of John, neither adding to, nor diminishing from the prophecy of his book; neither to the holy scriptures, or neither to the revelations of God which shall come hereafter, by the gift and power of the Holy Ghost, neither by the voice of God, or neither by the ministering of angels. (36) And the Lord God hath has spoken it; and honor, power, and glory be rendered to his holy name, both now and ever. Amen. (37) And again, by way of commandment to the church, concerning the manner of baptism—Behold whosoever humbleth himself all those who humble themselves before God and desireth desire to be baptized, and come comes forth with a broken heart hearts and a contrite spirit spirits and witnesseth witness unto before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon them the name of Jesus Christ, having a determination to serve him unto the end, and truly manifest by their works that they have received of the Spirit of Christ unto the remission of their sins, then shall they be received by baptism into the his church of Christ. (38) The duty of the elders, priests, teachers, deacons and members of the church of Christ—An apostle is an elder, and it is his calling to baptize; (39) And to ordain other elders, priests, teachers, and deacons; (40) And to administer the flesh bread and blood wine—the emblems of the flesh and blood of Christ according to the scriptures; (41) And to confirm those who are baptized into the church, by the laying on of hands for the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost according to the scriptures; (42) And to teach, expound, exhort, baptize and watch over the church; (43) And to confirm the church by laying on of hands, and the giving of the Holy Ghost; (44) And to take the lead of all meetings. (45) The elders are to conduct the meetings as they are led by the Holy Ghost, according to the commandments and revelations of God. (46) The priest’s duty is to preach, teach, expound, exhort, and baptize, and administer the sacrament, (47) And visit the house of each member, and exhort them to pray vocally and in secret and attend to all family duties. (48) And he may also ordain other priests, teachers, and deacons. (49) And he is to take the lead of meetings when there is no elder present; (50) But when there is an elder present, he is only to preach, teach expound, exhort, and baptize, (51) And visit the house of each member, exhorting them to pray vocally and in secret and to attend to all family duties. (52) In all these duties the priest is to assist the elder if occasion requires. (53) The teacher’s duty is to watch over the church always and be with them and strengthen them.”
D. & C. 20:54-56 is the same in both texts except D. & C. 20:54 deleted “nor.” D. & C. 20:57 says, “And he is to be assisted always and in all his duties in the church, by the deacons if occasion requires. (58) But neither the teachers nor deacons have authority to baptize, nor administer the sacrament, or lay on hands; (59) but They are, however, to warn, expound, exhort and teach, and invite all to come unto Christ. (60) Every elder, priest, teacher or deacon, is to be ordained according to the gifts and calling of God unto him; and he is to be ordained by the power of the Holy Ghost which is in the one who ordains him.”
Mormons claim the Bible was corrupted by priests who added what they wanted and deleted what they didn’t want, but they have little evidence to support such claims. But most LDS don’t even know that all of their own scriptures have been changed without benefit of any original document and there is lots of evidence like the above that shows those changes!
Those interested in more information about changes in LDS scripture can find lots of it online. Next time we will continue showing more changes in D. & C. Sec. 20.