House of Order

"Behold, mine house is a house of order, saith the Lord God, and not a house of confusion. Will I accept of an offering, saith the Lord, that is not made in my name? Or will I receive at your hands that which I have not appointed? And will I appoint unto you, saith the Lord, except it be by law, even as I and my Father ordained unto you, before the world was?" (D&C 132:8-11)

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"Yea, thus saith the still small voice, which whispereth through and pierceth all things, and often times it maketh my bones to quake while it maketh manifest, saying: And it shall come to pass that I, the Lord God, will send one mighty and strong, holding the scepter of power in his hand, clothed with light for a covering, whose mouth shall utter words, eternal words; while his bowels shall be a fountain of truth, to set in order the house of God, and to arrange by lot the inheritances of the saints whose names are found, and the names of their fathers, and of their children, enrolled in the book of the law of God; While that man, who was called of God and appointed, that putteth forth his hand to steady the ark of God, shall fall by the shaft of death, like as a tree that is smitten by the vivid shaft of lightning. And all they who are not found written in the book of remembrance shall find none inheritance in that day, but they shall be cut asunder, and their portion shall be appointed them among unbelievers, where are wailing and gnashing of teeth. These things I say not of myself; therefore, as the Lord speaketh, he will also fulfil." (D&C 85:6-10)

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"God's house is a house of order, but that does not mean what you think it means. God follows patterns. He establishes and ordains things according to one pattern, and then He takes them down again according to another pattern, and He does not vary. There is no guarantee, when He establishes a house in one instance, that that house cannot rebel, reject Him, and be rejected by Him at another. Just because God undertakes one work does not mean that He cannot undertake yet another. Just because He ordains one system at one time it does not mean that, when that system becomes abusive, He will not deal with the system He ordained according to its own standards in order to bring about the result He warned about. He follows a pattern and therein is the house of order. 

"When Christ came the first time, God took down a previously established hierarchy using an orderly process, informing us about His house of order. He ordained John to bring it to an end, which put him on a collision course with the hierarchy. John the Baptist was 'ordained by the angel of God at the time he was eight days old unto this power, to overthrow the kingdom of the Jews, and to make straight the way of the Lord before the face of his people, to prepare them for the coming of the Lord…' Joseph Smith elaborated, 'The son of Zacharias wrested the keys, the kingdom, the power, the glory from the Jews, by the holy anointing and decree of heaven.'

"For His return, we should expect something similar to His first coming. That is, an orderly take down of a competing hierarchy using someone ordained to accomplish that end that is put by God on a collision course with the targeted power structure. John’s mission required them to reject the truth and testimony he offered. It was orderly, public and required a conflict followed by rejection. In any modern take down of the LDS hierarchy the Lord will allow those involved to act freely. The hierarchy must voluntarily and clearly violate God’s standard. It must be orderly, public and the result of a conflict ordained by God’s will. This is how a house of order operates anciently and again today. 

"The Book of Mormon is more prophecy than history. Before the Lord’s appearance to the Nephites, society broke down into tribes consisting of family and friends. Immediately before the Lord’s return we should expect something similar. Therefore, part of the preparation by God’s house for coming social chaos is likely to include some preliminary preparations by families and friends to fellowship with one another in local gatherings, perhaps completely apart from control by the LDS hierarchy. Only by independently functioning can they hope to prepare for social chaos prophesied to accompany Zion and precede the Lord’s return.  There will also be indigenous prophet-led people coming through God’s assistance to Zion.

"Joseph Smith cautioned the saints about violating God’s trust. As Joseph put it: 'His word will go forth, in these last days, in purity; for if Zion will not purify herself, so as to be approved in all things, in His sight, He will seek another people; for His work will go on until Israel is gathered, and they who will not hear His voice, must expect to feel His wrath. We should expect God’s house to be ordered around only one principle: repentance. When the pride of a great organization replaces repentance, the heavens withdraw, and when they do, 'Amen' to that portion of God’s house. But the restoration through Joseph will always remain, even if God chooses to order it differently before His return. It is His to do with as He determines best....

"His house is a house of order, but since the days of Abraham God’s house has included things about which we have very little knowledge.

"Because of apostasy by the overwhelming majority of Adam’s posterity, Abraham was born into apostasy. Abraham’s struggle to overcome an apostate world qualified him to be the father of the righteous. His struggle to return and reclaim faith is the model mankind would see, with very few exceptions, forever after. He was the prototype of 'everyman' in a post-deluge world, cut off from God, the Patriarchs and the Garden.

"Abraham’s chosen son, with whom the covenant would continue, was Isaac. God renewed the covenant with Isaac, and again with Jacob, and again with Joseph. But Abraham married after the death of Sarah. His wife, Keturah, bore him sons also. Among these was Midian. Generations later, the chosen line was devoid of priesthood, but through Midian a descendant named Jethro was still a 'priest' whose line of authority reckoned back generations. This priest who had seven daughters, ordained Moses to the very priesthood that allowed him to enter God’s presence. From this we know the 'house of God' extended beyond the Biblical narrative involving Abraham’s lineage. God’s house included generations of righteous, priesthood empowered, independently functioning families lost to the scriptural record and our memory. 

"Even if only the chosen line from Abraham is God’s house, the Assyrian captivity of the Northern Kingdom removed ten tribes from the Bible’s account. The apocryphal book of Esdraus records they were led away to the north by God, at which point they vanished from our record. While absent from our Bible, these missing people remained prophet-led. They kept a sacred record we have yet to have revealed to us. Christ following His resurrection visited them, like the Nephites. God’s house of order spread in all directions and vanished from view.

"At approximately 600 B.C., a party of believers were prophet-led to abandon Jerusalem and flee to the Americas. Their record is the Book of Mormon. They, along with the missing ten tribes, remained part of God’s house of order, although we knew nothing concerning them until the Book of Mormon publication in 1830.

"Despite being widely separated, Christ considered them all 'one fold.' He was their 'one shepherd.' 

"Moses founded a religious establishment headed by descendants of Aaron and assisted by male members of the Tribe of Levi. This hierarchy, however, never controlled the Old Testament prophets, who were outsiders frequently condemning the religious establishment. God ordained them directly, outside Israel’s religious hierarchy. One of these independently ordained prophets declared: 'I was no prophet, neither was I a prophet’s son; but I was an herdman, and a gatherer of sycomore fruit. And the Lord took me as I followed the flock, and the Lord said unto me, Go, prophesy unto my people Israel.' Called only by God, they functioned outside of man’s authority and control. The house of order God establishes and watches over has frequently refused to obey Him. Prophets roundly condemned Israel’s priests and false prophets for failing to follow His path and respect His commandments. All of this is God’s house of order.

"The Book of Mormon follows a splinter group led by Zeniff into the land of Lehi-Nephi. His kingdom was conferred on his son, King Noah, who was wicked. His wickedness included an aggressive building program, while neglecting the needs of his people. He released all his father’s priests and called new ones 'such as were lifted up in the pride of their hearts.' Among these was the priest Alma. 

"When Noah’s people departed from God’s path, a single man entered the scene. He was unconnected from any known genealogy. Only he bears the name 'Abinadi' in the book, and therefore we cannot know for certain if he was Nephite, Lamanite, Jaredite, or something other. The lone witness, Abinadi, condemned King Noah, his court and his people. The established authorities were incredulous. King Noah declared: 'Who is Abinadi, that I and my people should be judged of him, or who is the Lord, that shall bring upon my people such great affliction?' The house of order, as far as the king and his priests could tell, could not include such an outsider.

"Joseph Smith explained John the Beloved was still here, laboring with the lost tribes of Israel. There were three Nephite disciples who similarly 'never taste of death' and remain here. LDS scripture also mention there are yet others 'ye know not of' who are likewise here with no account given us.

"Many more examples could be given, but this is enough to show the house of order established by God is beyond man’s will and never fully disclosed. Although an orderly process fills offices in His house, God can, has and will still speak up through whomever He chooses. Just because He says something to one, we should not conclude He is prevented from speaking with another." (Denver Snuffer, 40 Years in Mormonism, Preserving the Restoration, 9/9/2014)

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"Let me read it to you again and offer another definition. 'If a man gets fullness of the priesthood of God, he has to get it the same way that Jesus Christ obtained it, and that was by keeping all the commandments, and by obeying all the ordinances of the house of the Lord.' I want to redefine that 'house,' not in terms of physical structure or a building, but in terms of familial relationship, in which God alone establishes His house. And that to by acknowledging who His sons and daughters are. That house can never be overtaken, touched, trampled, broken, forsaken, compromised, or adulterated, because man is powerless to control God. And so when the house of God is to be set in order in the last days, don't think of that as a movement that you are a waiting for someone else to accomplish. How do you not know that the One Mighty and Strong, to be sent to set in order the house of God, is not Jesus Christ himself? Our Lord is waiting to minister to all those who will come to Him. Because, receiving our Lord is in itself an ordinance." (Denver Snuffer, 40 Years in Mormonism, Priesthood, 11/2/2013)

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"John wrested the keys, the kingdom, the power, the glory from the Jews, by the holy anointing and decree of heaven..." (Joseph Smith, TPJS)

"[John] was baptized while he was yet in his childhood, and was ordained by the angel of God at the time he was eight days old unto this power, to overthrow the kingdom of the Jews, and to make straight the way of the Lord before the face of his people, to prepare them for the coming of the Lord, in whose hand is given all power." (D&C 84:28)

It can be said that John was raised up, in part, as an authorized messenger to be rejected by the Jews, so he could wrest the keys from them.

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