DOCTRINE AND COVENANTS
OF THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST OF LATTER-DAY SAINTS
Revelation on Church Organization and Government, given through Joseph Smith the Prophet, April 1830. HC 1: 64–70. Preceding his record of this revelation the Prophet wrote: “We obtained of him [Jesus Christ] the following, by the spirit of prophecy and revelation; which not only gave us much information, but also pointed out to us the precise day upon which, according to his will and commandment, we should proceed to organize his Church once more here upon the earth.”
, The Book of Mormon proves the divinity of the latter-day work; 17–29
, The doctrines of creation, fall, atonement, and baptism are affirmed; 29–37
, Laws governing repentance, justification, sanctification, and baptism are set forth; 38–67
, Duties of elders, priests, teachers, and deacons are summarized; 68–74
, Duties of members, blessing of children, and mode of baptism are revealed; 75–84
, Sacramental prayers and regulations governing church membership are given.
of the bChurch
of Christ in these last days, being one thousand eight hundred and thirty years since the ccoming
of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in the flesh, it being regularly dorganized
and established agreeable to the elaws
of our country, by the will and commandments of God, in the fourth month, and on the sixth day of the month which is called April—
Which commandments were given to Joseph Smith, Jun., who was acalled
of God, and bordained
of Jesus Christ, to be the dfirst eelder
of this church;
And to Oliver Cowdery, who was also called of God, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to be the asecond
elder of this church, and ordained under his hand;
And this according to the agrace
of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to whom be all glory, both now and forever. Amen.
After it was truly manifested unto this first elder that he had received a aremission
of his sins, he was bentangled
again in the cvanities
of the world;
But after arepenting
, and humbling himself sincerely, through faith, God ministered unto him by an holy bangel
, whose ccountenance
was as lightning, and whose garments were pure and white above all other whiteness;
him power from on high, by the bmeans
which were before prepared, to translate the Book of Mormon;
Which contains a arecord
of a fallen people, and the bfulness
of the cgospel
of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles and to the Jews also;
Which was given by inspiration, and is confirmed to aothers
by the ministering of angels, and is bdeclared
unto the world by them—
Proving to the world that the holy scriptures are atrue
, and that God does binspire
men and call them to his choly
work in this age and generation, as well as in generations of old;
Thereby showing that he is the asame
God yesterday, today, and bforever
Therefore, having so great witnesses, by athem
shall the world be judged, even as many as shall hereafter come to a knowledge of this work.
And those who receive it in faith, and work arighteousness
, shall receive a bcrown
of eternal life;
For the Lord God has spoken it; and we, the elders of the church, have heard and bear awitness
to the words of the glorious Majesty on high, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
By these things we aknow
that there is a bGod
in heaven, who is infinite and ceternal
, from everlasting to everlasting the same dunchangeable
God, the framer of heaven and earth, and all things which are in them;
And that he acreated
man, male and female, after his own bimage
and in his own likeness, created he them;
And gave unto them commandments that they should alove
him, the only cliving
and true dGod
, and that he should be the only being whom they should worship.
Wherefore, the Almighty God gave his aOnly
Begotten Son, as it is written in those scriptures which have been given of him.
into heaven, to sit down on the right hand of the bFather
, to creign
with almighty power according to the will of the Father;
That as many as would abelieve
and be baptized in his holy name, and bendure
in faith to the end, should be saved—
Not only those who believed after he came in the ameridian
of time, in the bflesh
, but all those from the beginning, even as many as were before he came, who believed in the words of the holy prophets, who cspake
as they were inspired by the dgift
of the Holy Ghost, who truly etestified
of him in all things, should have eternal life,
As well as those who should come after, who should believe in the agifts
and callings of God by the Holy Ghost, which bbeareth
record of the Father and of the Son;
Which Father, Son, and Holy Ghost are aone
God, infinite and eternal, without end. Amen.
And we know that all men must arepent
on the name of Jesus Christ, and worship the Father in his name, and cendure
on his name to the end, or they cannot be esaved
in the kingdom of God.
And we know that ajustification
through the bgrace
of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is just and true;
And we know also, that asanctification
through the grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is just and true, to all those who blove
and serve God with all their cmights
, minds, and strength.
But there is a possibility that man may afall
and depart from the living God;
Therefore let the church take heed and pray always, lest they fall into atemptation
Yea, and even let those who are asanctified
take heed also.
And we know that these things are true and according to the revelations of John, neither aadding
to, nor diminishing from the prophecy of his book, the holy scriptures, or the revelations of God which shall come hereafter by the gift and power of the Holy Ghost, the bvoice
of God, or the ministering of angels.
And the Lord God has aspoken
it; and honor, power and glory be rendered to his holy bname
, both now and ever. Amen.
And again, by way of commandment to the church concerning the manner of baptism
—All those who ahumble
themselves before God, and desire to be baptized, and come forth with broken hearts and bcontrite
spirits, and witness before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon them the cname
of Jesus Christ, having a ddetermination
to serve him to the end, and truly manifest by their eworks
that they have received of the fSpirit
of Christ unto the gremission
of their sins, shall be received by baptism into his church.
The aduty of the elders, priests, teachers, deacons, and members of the church of Christ
is an celder
, and it is his calling to dbaptize
And to aordain
other elders, priests, teachers, and deacons;
And to administer abread
and wine—the bemblems
of the flesh and blood of Christ—
And to aconfirm
those who are baptized into the church, by the laying on of bhands
for the baptism of fire and the Holy Ghost, according to the scriptures;
And to teach, expound, exhort, baptize, and watch over the church;
And to confirm the church by the laying on of the hands, and the giving of the Holy Ghost;
And to take the alead
of all meetings.
The elders are to aconduct
as they are cled
by the Holy Ghost, according to the commandments and revelations of God.
’s duty is to preach, bteach
, expound, exhort, and baptize, and administer the sacrament,
And visit the house of each member, and exhort them to apray bvocally
and in secret and attend to all cfamily
And he may also aordain
other priests, teachers, and deacons.
And he is to take the alead
of meetings when there is no elder present;
But when there is an elder present, he is only to preach, teach, expound, exhort, and baptize,
And visit the house of each member, exhorting them to pray vocally and in secret and attend to all family duties.
In all these duties the priest is to aassist
the elder if occasion requires.
’s duty is to bwatch
over the cchurch
always, and be with and strengthen them;
And see that the church meet together often, and also see that all the members do their duty.
And he is to take the lead of meetings in the absence of the elder or priest—
And is to be assisted always, in all his duties in the church, by the adeacons
, if occasion requires.
But neither teachers nor deacons have authority to baptize, administer the asacrament
, or lay on bhands
They are, however, to warn, expound, exhort, and teach, and invite all to come unto Christ.
, teacher, or deacon is to be cordained daccording
to the gifts and callings of God unto him; and he is to be eordained
by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is in the one who ordains him.
The several elders composing this church of Christ are to ameet
in conference once in three months, or from time to time as said conferences shall direct or appoint;
And said conferences are to do whatever church business is necessary to be done at the time.
The elders are to receive their licenses from other elders, by avote
of the church to which they belong, or from the conferences.
Each priest, teacher, or deacon, who is ordained by a priest, may take a certificate from him at the time, which acertificate
, when presented to an elder, shall entitle him to a license, which shall authorize him to perform the duties of his calling, or he may receive it from a conference.
No person is to be aordained
to any office in this church, where there is a regularly organized branch of the same, without the bvote
of that church;
But the presiding elders, traveling bishops, high councilors, high priests, and elders, may have the privilege of ordaining, where there is no branch of the church that a vote may be called.
Every president of the high priesthood (or presiding elder), abishop
, high councilor, and bhigh
priest, is to be ordained by the direction of a chigh
council or general conference.
The aduty of the members after they are received by bbaptism.
—The elders or priests are to have a sufficient time to expound all things concerning the church of Christ to their cunderstanding
, previous to their partaking of the dsacrament
and being confirmed by the laying on of the ehands
of the elders, so that all things may be done in forder
And the members shall manifest before the church, and also before the elders, by a agodly
walk and conversation, that they are worthy of it, that there may be works and bfaith
agreeable to the holy scriptures—walking in choliness
before the Lord.
Every member of the church of Christ having achildren
is to bring them unto the elders before the church, who are to lay their bhands
upon them in the name of Jesus Christ, and bless them in his name.
No one can be received into the church of Christ unless he has arrived unto the years of aaccountability
before God, and is capable of brepentance
is to be administered in the following manner unto all those who repent—
The person who is called of God and has authority from Jesus Christ to baptize, shall go down into the water with the person who has presented himself or herself for baptism, and shall say, calling him or her by name: Having been commissioned of Jesus Christ, I baptize you in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.
Then shall he aimmerse
him or her in the water, and come forth again out of the water.
And the elder or priest shall administer it; and after this amanner
shall he administer it—he shall kneel with the church and call upon the Father in solemn prayer, saying:
O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this abread
to the souls of all those who partake of it, that they may eat in remembrance of the body of thy Son, and bwitness
unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him and keep his ccommandments
which he has given them; that they may always have his dSpirit
to be with them. Amen.
of administering the wine—he shall take the bcup
also, and say:
O God, the Eternal Father, we ask thee in the name of thy Son, Jesus Christ, to bless and sanctify this awine
to the souls of all those who drink of it, that they may do it in remembrance of the blood of thy Son, which was shed for them; that they may witness unto thee, O God, the Eternal Father, that they do always remember him, that they may have his Spirit to be with them. Amen.
Any member of the church of Christ atransgressing
, or being bovertaken
in a fault, shall be dealt with as the scriptures direct.
It shall be the duty of the several churches, composing the church of Christ, to send one or more of their teachers to attend the several conferences held by the elders of the church,
With a list of the anames
of the several members uniting themselves with the church since the last conference; or send by the hand of some priest; so that a regular list of all the names of the whole church may be kept in a book by one of the elders, whomsoever the other elders shall appoint from time to time;
And also, if any have been aexpelled
from the church, so that their names may be blotted out of the general church brecord
All members removing from the church where they reside, if going to a church where they are not known, may take a letter acertifying
that they are regular members and in good standing, which certificate may be signed by any elder or priest if the member receiving the letter is personally acquainted with the elder or priest, or it may be signed by the teachers or deacons of the church.