"...whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same." (D&C 1:38)
In the days of Christ, can anyone believe it would have been accurate to say "whether by mine own voice or by the voice of the Pharisees, it is the same?" Surely a statement such as this causes revulsion in the senses of anyone familiar with the New Testament. Jesus affirmed they sat in Moses seat, and were thus the authorized representatives of the church. So the question must naturally be asked, what qualifies as "my servant"?
The word of God is never as simple as one statement, otherwise we would all be guilty of murder, or of condoning it, as the commandment "thou shalt not kill" should not be taken in isolation of other scripture; and the twelfth article of faith would condemn many righteous and holy men.
If the common interpretation is correct, then this scripture would contradict Nephi's declaration when he said "Cursed is he that putteth his trust in man, or maketh flesh his arm, or shall hearken unto the precepts of men, save their precepts shall be given by the power of the Holy Ghost." (2 Ne 28:31) If all that church authorities say is the same as God's own voice, then there is no need for Nephi's teaching, for we can then suspend all judgement. We are to judge who is and who is not God's servant, and the Lord places the responsibility for this judgement squarely on the shoulders of each individual.
If a man speaks by the power of the Holy Ghost, then he is God's servant, God the Testator being the willing witness to the words of that person. If he speaks by some other spirit, by his own learning, wisdom or wit, then no matter his position or church calling, his words cannot be recognized as the voice of God.