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The Aaronic Priesthood - Insight Into D&C 13

TitleThe Aaronic Priesthood - Insight Into D&C 13
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsBlack, Susan Easton
Book TitleRestoration Voices Volume 2: Insights and Stories of the Doctrine and Covenants
PublisherBook of Mormon Central
CitySpringville, UT

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The Prophet Joseph Smith wrote of his joy at receiving the Aaronic Priesthood from John the Baptist:

What joy! what wonder! what amazement! While the world were racked and distracted—while millions were groping as the blind for the wall, and while all men were resting upon uncertainty, as a general mass, our eyes beheld, our ears heard. As in the “blaze of day;” yes, more—above the glitter of the May sunbeam, which then shed its brilliancy over the face of nature! Then his voice, though mild, pierced to the centre, and his words, “I am thy fellow-servant,” dispelled every fear. We listened, we gazed, we admired! ’Twas the voice of an angel from glory, ’twas a message from the Most High. . . . And as we heard we rejoiced, while his love enkindled upon our souls, and we were wrapt in the vision of the Almighty! Where was room for doubt? Nowhere; uncertainty had fled, doubt had sunk no more to rise, while fiction and deception had fled forever![1]

Oliver Cowdery also expressed his joy at receiving the Aaronic Priesthood:

On a sudden, as from the midst of eternity, the voice of the Redeemer spake peace to us, while the veil was parted and the angel of God came down clothed with glory, and delivered the anxiously looked for message, and the keys of the gospel of repentance! . . . Then his voice, though mild, pierced to the center, and his words, “I am thy fellow servant,” dispelled every fear. We listened—we gazed—we admired! ’Twas the voice of an angel from glory—’twas a message from the Most High! I shall not attempt to paint to you the feelings of this heart, nor the majestic beauty and glory which surrounded us on this occasion; but you will believe me when I say, that earth, nor men, with the eloquence of time, cannot begin to clothe language in as interesting and sublime a manner as this holy personage.[2]

Prophets today also write of the Aaronic Priesthood and the blessing of that priesthood in their lives. President Henry B. Eyring penned,

Happily, my wise parents put great heroes in my path as a boy. My dad took me to Yankee Stadium only once to observe my baseball hero play, but every Sunday he let me observe a priesthood man who became a hero. That hero shaped my life. My father was the branch president of the little branch which met in our home. By the way, if you came down to the first floor on Sunday morning, you were in church. Our branch never had more than 30 people in attendance.

There was a young man who drove his mother to our house for meetings, but he never came into the house. He was not a member. It was my father who succeeded by going out to him where he parked the car and inviting him into our home. He was baptized and became my first and only Aaronic Priesthood leader. He became my priesthood hero. I still remember the wooden statue he gave me as a reward after we had completed a project to cut firewood for a widow. I have tried to be like him whenever I give justified praise to a servant of God.[3]

[1] “O. Cowdery’s First Letter to W. W. Phelps,” Millennial Star 3, no. 8 (January 1843): 153–154.

[2] “Oliver Cowdery to William W. Phelps,” Latter Day Saints’ Messenger and Advocate 1, no. 1 (October 1834), 15–16.

[3] Henry B. Eyring, “The Priesthood Man,” Ensign, May 2014.



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Scripture Reference

Doctrine and Covenants 13:1