On Being an Apostle but not in the Quorum

Aaron R. aka Ricoapostles, Mormon, Priesthood, scripture, theology 47 Comments

‘In 1866, at the age of only twenty-seven, Joseph F. Smith was ordained an Apostle by President Brigham Young, and served briefly as one of his special additional counselors. When a vacancy occurred in the Twelve the following year, Elder Smith was sustained as a member of that quorum’ [1].  The date was Oct 8, 1867.  This means Joseph F. Smith was an Apostle a year before he joined the Quorum of the twelve.  Moreover, BY ordained Joseph F. Smith spontaneously without consultation of all members of the First presidency [2].  Lest we think this is just another aberration of the Brigham Young period, it has occurred a few times in the Church’s history.  What does this tell us about what it means to be an Apostle, and what is the relationship between the quorum and the office?

As a lead into the rest of this discussion the other people who had this experience are:

Joseph Angell Young – One of Brigham Young’s sons was ordained in 1864 and was never subsequent invited into the quorum [3].

‘Brigham Young, Jr., was ordained as an Apostle by his father on February 4, 1864, but he did not become a member of the Council of the Twelve until October 1868, when he was chosen to fill the vacancy caused by George A. Smith’ [4].

Sylvester Q. Cannon was ordained an Apostle on April 14th, 1938 and was set-apart in the Quorum April 6th 1939, a year later [3].

Finally Alvin R. Dyer was called as an Apostle on October 5th 1967 but was never included in the Quorum, and was actually incorporated into the First Quorum of Seventy when it was created in Oct 1st 1976 [3].

The last person that might have been in a similar situation was David Whitmer & Oliver Cowdrey (D&C 18: 9), but I will not discuss this here [5].

President McKay once said: “There are apostles who are not members of the council. I think there were in that day [i.e., in New Testament times], at least they were considered to be apostles… A man may be an apostle but not one of the Council of the Twelve” [4].  That people can be ordained as an Apostle without being a member of the Twelve suggests that it is a Priesthood office which could be bestowed on those who are prepared.

In an article by David L. Paulsen, Joseph Smith is recorded to have said in a meeting in 1833, after a vision of the Father and the Son, “Brethren, now you are prepared to be the apostles of Jesus Christ, for you have seen both the Father and the Son and know that They exist and that They are two separate personages” [6].  President McKay, in the citation above, uses the example of Paul and Barabbas who were considered Apostles without them being included in the Quorum.  Paul it seems may have been later, while for Barabbas it is less clear.  It seems they were considered to be Apostles on the basis of what they had seen and that they were felt called to the ministry.

This seems to imply something similar to what Ammon describes in the Book of Mormon.  He says ‘I am called by that Holy Spirit to teach [the gospel]… and a portion of that Spirit dwelleth in me, which giveth me knowledge and also power’ (Alma 18: 34-5).  Moreover, there is a distinction between the calling and the ordinance associated with Priesthood power (see Al 13: 8).  In addition D&C 121: 37 argues that the powers of heaven may be conferred upon us, but that there are inseparable from the Spirit.  In fact if this section of scripture teaches us anything then it is that the Holy Ghost, through a Saintly life, gives power to an individual (see D&C 121: 46) not by the virtue of the Priesthood (D&C 121:40).

This suggest two things to me: first being an Apostle is not necessarily about being in the Quorum of the Twelve and that it may well be a Priesthood office, like High Priest, rather than a calling in that Priesthood.  Second there is a conception that Mormonism has scope for the ‘Priesthood of all believers’ type view.  Meaning that spiritual power is given to those who are called by God or receive that power, rather than by merely being ordained.


1. Richard O. Cowan, The Church in the Twentieth Century [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1985], 45.

2. Truman G. Madsen; see also Scott Kenney, Joseph F. Smith in The Presidents of the Church, ed. L.J. Arrington [Salt Lake City, UT.: Deseret Book, ?] p. 191.

3. Encyclopaedia of Mormonism, Appendix 1, p. 1631-51.

4. David O. McKay, Gospel Ideals: Selections from the Discourses of David O. McKay [Salt Lake City: Improvement Era, 1953], 250.

5. See Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 6:320 and Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses 6:29.

6. David L. Paulsen, The Doctrine of Divine Embodiment: Restoration, Judeo-Christian, and Philosophical Perspectives in BYU Studies, vol. 35, no. 4 (Provo UT.: BYU Press, 1996).

Comments 47

  1. Post

    I think apostle, patriarch and seventy are part of the High Priest portion, according to D&C 107.

    What might be more accurate for me to suggest is that it implies a different level of Priesthood, above High Priest.

    1. you could draw that conclusion but the term elder and high priest are often used generically to refer to someone who holds the Mel Priesthood – all five are in fact dif offices in the Mel Priesthood as MrQ&A says

      the interesting thing about patriarchs is that they don’t have a quorum as the other offices do and are directed to meet with their local HP quorum as their priesthood brotherhood

      I believe the same is true of Area 70 who once released are directed to meet with the HPs – it is similar to being a bishop – once a bishop, always a bishop, for it is a priesthood office ordained upon a man – he is released as the bishop of so&so ward but he always holds the priesthood – and if he is called again as a bishop of a ward, he is not ordained for he already holds the office but is just set apart as the bishop of so&so ward

  2. I think there were lots of things in the Church’s past regarding the priesthood that have essentially been jettisoned now – the calling of apostles as you mentioned, Ward Seventies, people having “calling and election made sure”, “eternal marriage” defined as polygamy, having women being able to be resealed to a man with a “higher priesthood”, the whole race thing, etc.

    In my opinion, it’s just a moving target as the Church tries to fine-tune it’s organization to exist within the society around it.

    1. jettisoned may be the wrong term – all you mention are real doctrine based principles

      the Lord can call apostles as He sees and needs – the need to be in the quorum of the twelve is perceived requirement of most members due to the infrequent call the Lord issues to anyone outside a need to fill in the quorum due to death – as special witnesses of Christ, they receive a sure knowledge of the Savior which they then have duty to share with the world – as the Lord promises in Sec 88, however, that privilege or knowledge is available to anyone as make themselves worthy & prepared as the brother of Jared when the Lord said He could not withhold Himself from him

      again, the role of 70 as missionaries was the thought & reasoning when members around the world were called & ordained as 70 – I was one of those – 70s were led and directed by the seven presidents from slc – there was nothing wrong with this but thru additional experience and subsequent revelation, I feel the Lord told the brethren that it would be more efficient for those called as 70 to be under the direct supervision of the 12 thru the seven presidents of 70 – I love the blend that exists of those called for life as general authorities and those called as Area 70 to serve for a finite period – this blend creates the direction, coordination and local implementation of church doctrine and policy that truly ‘goes before the twelve’ as outlined in the D&C

      calling and election will be a true doctrine til the last person is born into the world – every person has the ability to progress so that the Lord as He says He is bound when we do what He says must reveal Himself – except for unusual circumstances, that privilege is part of that person being told he will be exalted or that his calling and election is sure – Pres Romney’s very last talk in gen conf was to encourage the saints to make their calling and election sure

      most people believe because we practice monogamy that polygamy is dead – false – we believe the practice of multiple living wives is not acceptable – if a man is sealed to his wife who later passes away, he may remarry and sealed to a second and third wife, etc – assuming all to be faithful to their marriage covenants, they will live in a state of polygamy in exaltation – so polygamy continues to be a true principle and part of eternal marriage when there are multiple wives

      I’m not familiar with higher priesthood sealings of women – maybe you could share what you understand about that

      and I don’t see it as fine tune to society around it but an unfolding of its fullness and glory as the saints grow spiritually to be fully ready to accept the Son at His second coming

  3. Post

    #3 – Thanks for your response. Is that a way of saying that they wer wrong to do this and that they realised it? If so why do you think the leaders in the past are wrong and the current leaders are right?

    Moreover, if you were a member of the Church in 1965, before the same thing happened to Alvin R. Dyer, it would have been possible to have used the same argument. Therefore I think your argument is flawed. Further, because it has not been formally prohibited as a practice it is still possible that this could happen again. Therefore although I think it is possible you are right, I am also not convinced you are.

  4. It seems to me like we were always clearly taught that there are five offices in the Melchizedek priesthood: Elder, High Priest, Patriarch, Seventy, and Apostle.

    I believe that there is no hard and fast rule here, in reference to the office of an apostle and the quorum, other than that someone ordained to the office of an apostle is usually also made a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

    See this from the Gospel Principles manual:

    And something from Wikipedia here:

  5. #4 – I agree 100% that it could happen again, as I do think that the office of apostle and the calling to be in the Quorum of 12 are different things – I just don’t see it happening much anymore.

    I perhaps wasn’t clear enough, but when I said “jettisoned”, there is a better way to describe it. I think many of the examples I mentioned are administrative details and not eternal principles. I think it’s just administratively easier to have all the apostles in the Quorum of 12. I think with millions of members all over the world, it was administratively easier to stop doing the “calling and election” ordinance at the levels they did it in the past. I think that while the office of the Seventies still exists, administratively, it made more sense to make it a General church office as opposed to a ward or stake level office. And even with race, I don’t think it was ever an eternal principle as Joseph Smith ordained blacks, and we ordain blacks – it was a practice instituted by BY that was eventually also changed so the gospel could spread to areas of the world like Brazil and Africa where the principle was problematic.

    So, I don’t think that they were “wrong to do this”. I think it’s just a different emphasis as time goes by and the Church “fine-tunes” its adminstrative organization. The same way that we still don’t say polygamy was “wrong”, we just don’t actually practice it anymore.

  6. Post

    #5 – So can you have an elder who is not invited into elders Quorum? The clear distinction suggests something else is occuring here?

    #6 – Thanks I understand your position a little better. My point is that these ordinations suggest that the power of the P. is something separate from participating in a specific office of the P. I think this is a little more generic than s merely suggested by the apostolic example moreover it seems that that you can have this P. and not be in the quorum places it in a different category to other offices (like Elders, as I noted above).

    1. no, no elder not in a quorum –

      apostle is different – there is authority in the calling of an apostle that the chief apostle or prophet of church may be inspired to know that that person needs to serve in the calling he is given, like being a counselor in the first presidency – I don’t believe that the Lord would inspire the chief apostle to ordain anyone only for their personal edification and progression with the understanding we have today

      like was mentioned, however, the Lord’s design for running the church requires twelve men called and ordained and set apart as members of the quorum of the twelve to administer to the affairs of the kingdom

      so, yes, I could see the Lord again calling additional apostles to fulfill the demand they have to bear that witness in all the world if there comes to be more opportunity than the twelve could address – I also think that that is why the calling of 70 on a general authority level and on an Area level is being so rapidly expanded to assist the twelve in the discharge of their calling as outlined in the D&C

  7. I know I cannot help much in this discussion. I have spent over thirty years reading and trying to understand the Mormon Apostleship and the Quorum of Twelve. Mike Quinn’s BYU Studies article on the Mormon Succession Crisis started me down the road.

    Authors from Quinn, Reed Durham, Todd Compton, Greg Prince, Gary Bergera, Ron Walker and many more, have grappled with this subject. The histories of the Apostles, Quorum of Twelve and Succession are intertwined. Much of what I write is by memory, so forgive me if I make a mistake.

    Greg Prince lists twelve Apostles before the 1835 ordination. These include Joseph Smith, Oliver Cowdery, Orson Pratt and David Whitmer. Gary Bergera, Reed Durham and Mike Quinn deal with the realignment of the Twelve in 1877 with John Taylor and Wilford Woodruff moving ahead of Orson Pratt and Orson Hyde. Some authors have dealt with the realignment of the twelve with Brgham Young Jr. being placed after Joseph F. Smith, even though Young was ordained an Apostle before Smith and Young had always been ahead of him in Quorum meetings. Ron Walker and others have dealt with Heber Grant wanting Joseph F. Smith moved ahead of Wilford Woodruff in the Twelve. Prince has worked on the Apostle callings during David O. McKay’s tenure. I believe McKay ordain a few more Apostles that just Alvin Dyer.

    If anyone one is interested in reading about this subject, I would be more than happy to send a list of reading material.

  8. An apostle is an office in the priesthood, just like a seventy, high priest and elder. A seventy, for instance, can be ordained a seventy but not belong to a quorum of the seventy. We actually have a seventy in our ward but he belongs to the high priest quorum of the stake. When you look at his church record in MLS it says his Priesthood is seventy and it has his ordination date. He was ordained a seventy for a specific purpose in Tonga. The same can hold true for any office of the Priesthood. Some members of the 1st or 2nd quorum of the seventy become emeritus members. They get to the point where their physical bodies just can’t keep up with the demands of being a general authority and they get released from their calling as a general authority and they are no longer in the quorum. Their priesthood office remains seventy though. They will usually end up back in their stake’s high priest quorum. The first presidency is a quorum as well, but the office of the priesthood they hold is apostle just like those in the quorum of the twelve. This is a good example of members who are apostles but who are not in the quorum of the twelve.

  9. Post

    #8 – Your right, there is lots of good materials out there. You may be right about McKay, although I could not find them.

    #9 – I am pretty sure that he merely visits with that quoum for the sake of convenience now that the seventies have been moved out of stake jurisdiction. Moreover, although I understand what your saying about the first presidncy, they by default return to it when the presidency is dissolved, unless they are not an apostle in which case they return to what quorum they previously met with and so the example is not exactly similar.

    I am surprised that no one has countered my point about priesthood power being separate from ordination, even to the point that it can precede it. It that you can be an apostl without being ordained.

    1. as the brethren have clarified more recently, power in all priesthood offices and callings is the result of the priesthood holder’s righteousness, not his office or calling

      like it says in 121, amen to his power when he is unrighteous

      so, no, one cannot be an apostle without the ordination – he may be worthy, he may be prepared – he may even be more righteous than his fellow apostles – but the Lord uses and calls people for many reasons and factors unknown to us – so for us to judge and not support and sustain the brethren as we covenant in the temple is like us reaching to steady the ark

  10. Don’t forget John W. Young, another of Brigham Young’s sons that was ordained an apostle, but not to the quorum. According to the Oracles at wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Willard_Young, Joseph F, Smith rewrote the laws of apostolic succession because of him.

    Also, Jacob Hamblin was ordain “apostle to the indians” and never sat in the Council of the 12. Many claim this title was not a preisthood office, although BY gave it to him in a priesthood blessing.

    Both Pres. McKay and Kimball had more than 2 counselors in the 1st presidency (4 and 3, repectively) so as recently as the 1980’s the church had more than 15 apostles.

    But were they also called as seers and revelators? and were they sustained in General Conference?

    Joe, I’d be interested in your reading list clark[at]icfmag[dot]com

    1. much of the verbiage of the early church was not refined in definition as we have come to know it today so to ascribe our usage and understand to comments from the early church isn’t always accurate

      like the Lord saying He ordained Emma to do the hymns for the church – we have come to know that was a charge or calling or assignment she received of the Lord and not hands laid on head to an office or authority

      and the terms ordained and set apart have been loosely interchanged when only one was correct

      so like Emma, for him to be an apostle or messenger to the Indians is totally understandable and acceptable in linguistic description without us ascribing the literal call & ordination to the priesthood office

  11. Rico,
    A good article to read is here: http://www.lds.org/ldsorg/v/index.jsp?hideNav=1&locale=0&sourceId=e6402e4d12fdb010VgnVCM1000004d82620a____&vgnextoid=f318118dd536c010VgnVCM1000004d82620aRCRD

    I wouldn’t assume from the examples you give, like Ammon, that people were not ordained. Alma the elder did ordain teachers (http://scriptures.lds.org/en/mosiah/25/19#19). These teachers also could have included the sons of Mosiah and his son Alma.

    Also, ordaining someone to an office of the Priesthood has never, in the church, put someone in a quorum. For example, there are perspective elders who are in my ward’s elder’s quorum. They currently do not even hold the Melchizedek Priesthood or any office therein. They are in the quorum though and it is even listed as such in MLS (The records of the church). This is also true for adults who have never received the Melchizedek Priesthood. My brother, for example, is less active in the church but is around 40 years old. He is on the records of the church as both a teacher in the Aaronic Priesthood and a member of the elder’s quorum. He is not a member of the teacher’s quorum even though his office in the Aaronic Priesthood is that of a teacher.

    1. I believe your description of prospective elders being in the elders quorum may not be a good example – I understand to be a member of the quorum you must hold the priesthood – that would mean those brethren are visitors preparing themselves for that calling or office and by attending with those of comparable age and circumstance, they can have the best opportunity for that preparation

      and the same with the teacher who is an adult – I believe the bishop as the president of the aaronic priesthood likewise says it is better for that person to attend with those most able to assist in his progression to join the elders as an elder and be a member of that quorum rather than a visitor

  12. I think I read in the Journal of the Mormon History Association that Brigham Young ordained three sons in addition to BY Jr. as apostles. He did it without the knowledge of the 12, in spite of the fact there were no vacancies in the 12 and one of those sons was only 11 years old. Anyone else remember that?

  13. Post

    #11 – Thank you. I have read it before. It is one of Bro. Millet’s best I think.

    #12 – Jacob Hamblin is an interesting case, and one I had not considered. I thought I had included John W. Young. I am not sure why now, but thanks for bringing that up. If members of the first presidency are not apostles they are not considered to be apostles but are set-apart as prophets seers and revelators.

    #13 – John W. Young, Joseph Angell Young and brigham Young Jr. are the three you are refering to but I am not sure about there respective ages. I will check.

    1. If members of the first presidency are not apostles they are not considered to be apostles but are set-apart as prophets seers and revelators.

      Im not sure what you’re saying – the Lord didn’t initially require that counselors to be apostles but HPs as He states in the D&C – but I believe that the Lord has since directed the brethren in revelations we don’t have access to that they are all to be apostles now – just my belief based on what I have observed over the years to be the case

      but I don’t know of anyone not called as an apostle who was subsequently set apart or sustained as prophets, seers & revelators – please share if you do – I believe for one to be a prophet, seer & revelator he must be ordained as an apostle

  14. Post

    On Jacob Hamblin, he would actually be an example of the kinda thing I am talking about. A person given priesthood power to perform a role without a specific ordination.

  15. Clark,

    When I get home tonight I will get the list together and send it.

    Rico and Don,

    The article about John Willard is in Dialogue by Todd Compton. Young ordained four sons. John Willard first in 1855(?) at the age of 11, Brigie Jr. and Joseph A. in 1864 and reaffirmed John W., and Brigham Heber at a later date.

    On your #10 question. This is more a question about authority. This is the difficult part that I was alluding to. Authority in the first ten years makes little to no sense to me. Apostles were Elders without a High Priesthood or High Priest. The BofM is at best confusing about the subject. I recall someone suggesting their were three types of Apostles but I cannot find the source for the life of me. What I recall was 1. witness, like the three and eight witnesses. If you add Joseph Smith you have twelve. 2. calling of Elder, Orson Pratt is the example for this, and 3. Charismatic, an angel or God himself giving an ordination, vision or calling. Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery are the examples of this calling.

    Since Smith’s death I know of no callings in the LDS church outside of ordination. I believe since John Taylor all Apostles have been High Priest; but Alvin Dyer may have been a Seventy. Even the members of the First Quorum of Seventy is a High Priest first before the setting apart. Mike Quinn told me he knew of one exception, unfortunately he would not name the person.

    1. not sure about the whole #10 response comment, too confusing for me to comment

      but about apostles being HPs first, isn’t that just a function of their previous callings and experience? not a requirement per se to be an apostle – and I think the same is prob true for alvin r dyer, that he was a HP before being a seventy before being an apostle

      so not a requirement but an outgrowth of their experience prior to the call of apostle

  16. The following quote has stuck like glue on paper in the minds of members:

    “Brethren, now you are prepared to be the apostles of Jesus Christ, for you have seen both the Father and the Son and know that They exist and that They are two separate personages”

    Kinda like the misunderstanding on how the Book of Mormon was translated “you must study it out in your heart and mind…”

    First off, we know apostles WERE called who DID NOT experience what Joseph said.

    Second, those who did have that experience, were never called “apostles” by God or Jesus, let alone a church.

    In other words, they’re not synonymous, as you have stated.


    The first error that crept into the NT church was man-called apostles. We may recall that the original twelve apostles have a special calling that goes beyond their public ministry and includes judging.

    The apostles at Jerusalem took it upon themselves to fill the vacancy when they should have ASKED FIRST. Notice how Jesus did fill the vacancy by calling Paul HIMSELF!


    We have the Book of Mormon as our pattern for churches outside of the time and place of Israel, in which Jesus did NOT call apostles, but he did call disciples.

    [On a similar note, why are Mormon GA’s called “Elders” when they are not?]

    1. I think I commented on your point above for another comment

      the second point of man called apostles is a little fuzzy – I believe the example we have in the calling of barnabas was preserved to give witness and testimony to the pattern the Lord established and is used today in that the twelve meet and give their approval and sustaining vote for brethren newly brought before them to be considered to be called as apostles

      and Christ did call apostles as He said in Mat 10 that He called and ordained them and not that they choose to be apostles – disciples are not ordained as such but apostles are

      your example of Paul is an excellent example of the Lord telling someone of His intent for them, much like the angel with ammon and the sons of mosiah – he didn’t call or ordain them but gave them understanding so that in the case of paul, he sought out peter for that ordination and direction as the chief apostle

  17. #16 – Thanks Joe. I have not read the Compton article and so i will have to look it up. Your three types of apostles is interesting. That perspective would certainly fit with where I seem to be going in my thinking.

    I think Alvin yer was a HP, because the First Quorum of Seventy was not formed and he was admitted into it when it was created. but he may well have been one of the Presidency of the seventy before his ordination to the apostleship.

    #17 – I think you raise interesting point, which is why i find the different types of apostolic calling interesting. From an organizational point of view I can certainly see why it is dangerous to wait for God to call someone to be an apostle, like Paul. Because you could get all types saying they are called. However, I think there is something to be said about that process. The problem for a Church (if it wants to maintain stability and a fixed number in the quorum) is how do we control these experiences. Now that is of course problematic but I can see the motivation.

    I think the Elders thing is a culture rather than an actual title.

  18. #19:

    I think many of the titles we use are cultural and not a title. The General Authorities generally aren’t “Elders” but High Priests or Apostles as you mentioned. We also call the president of the YM organization “President” but the president of the YW organization “Sister”. Yet another cultural left-over.

  19. Mike S #20

    In our ward we refer to the female leadership as President…, I must admit that due to my awkwardness I struggle with it, in ward council our clerk asked for President Jones to read something, without thinking I started to say I didn’t think Mark was… I stopped myself mid sentence ouch.. I felt like such a plum.

  20. “From an organizational point of view I can certainly see why it is dangerous to wait for God to call someone to be an apostle, like Paul. Because you could get all types saying they are called.”

    Had they ASKED Jesus would have REPLIED.

    The title “Elder” is not a cultural left over, but maybe a doctrinal left over. “Elder” was the highest church office in the NT church, BoM church, and early LDS church.

    1. like I observed above, God called Paul who then was inspired to seek out Peter to be ordained and counsel with him as to direction and counsel

      the call from God’s church comes from His representative the prophet to issue the call, confirm the inspiration the to be called party may have received like Paul then receive the physical ordination of laying on of hands

      Elder is title to denote recognized authority of those called to serve on the general church level and out of respect for the sanctity of calling of apostle I believe – just as all members of the first presidency are called president rather than elder – title of bishop is used on both the local level and the general level

      and there were seventy in the NT and apostles, both ‘higher’ than elder

  21. This is fascinating stuff, Rico. Sounds like nepotism to me, though. Even the distinction of FP being additional to the Q12 seems like a way to just give more people callings in high level leadership, not essential, and actually detrimental if we have to have unanimity for changes (like Blacks & Priesthood) to occur.

    1. actually having both quorums gives more stability and creates an environment where it would be more difficult for someone who had a private agenda to twist doctrine or take advantage of position to self-aggrandize himself – and unanimity again prevents a few from being able to make changes without it being the feeling and inspiration of all

  22. #16 – On the Jown W. issue, according to the Encyc. of Mormonism he was never an apostle so I will ahve to do more research. This leads me to suspect that the John W. blessing was similar to the Jacob Hamblin thing.

    #21 – This whole issue needs to be used more. It is not used in this way in our ward/stake. But that is because I resist all titles anyway.

    #22 – I think they did ask, that is the process described in acts 1. the current leadership certainly ask. Maybe I am wrong but I do not remeber elder being used in BoM but HP certainly is, and regularly.

    #23 – Thanks. Nepotism to an extent. but what about Alvin R. Dyer. Moreover, Slyvester Cannon was caleld after his father had died and his influenced diminished. I wonder whether blessings were a factor. For example, Joseph F. was promised that he would be an apostle. BY probably knew about this and therefore fulfilled the prophecy. I wonder whether the same is true for others. I agree that the FP, and its relation to the is not clear and is certainly a modern Church idea. I think it grew out of Joseph’s desire to sit above the High Council and the Twelve when they were competing and he was unsure how it would play out. Perhaps it is not necessary, but it is certainly scriptural now.

  23. Rico: “For example, Joseph F. was promised that he would be an apostle. BY probably knew about this and therefore fulfilled the prophecy. I wonder whether the same is true for others.” I believe D. Michael Quinn was predicted to be an apostle, at least according to him in his interview with John D. That and a quarter will get you a really poor cup of coffee.

  24. “#22 – I think they did ask, that is the process described in acts 1. the current leadership certainly ask. Maybe I am wrong but I do not remeber elder being used in BoM but HP certainly is, and regularly.”

    The act of “casting lots” is akin to playing “rock, paper, scissors” and was random.

    Jesus PERSONALLY answered prayers IN THE FLESH to his disciples in the NT and the BoM, why couldn’t the apostles receive an answer the same way?

    Btw, HP do not occur in either the New Covenant church of the NT or the BoM.

  25. Actually I nearly mentioned Quinn. I think they probably suspected he had forfeited that blessing at some point before being x’d… although maybe time will tell who knows what changes the church might make.

    #26 – There are many times Jesus did not answer prayers in the flesh in the NT and BoM. I always see the process of casting lots as random (like voting) but that does not mean that they did not ask first and get an answer. You are inferring things about the text that aren’t there. Moreover, they clearly discussed the issue together.

    Elders are used (see Al 4:7; 6:1; Moro 3-6) But so are HP (see Msh 23:16; 26:7; Al 4:4; Al 13)

  26. What part of: “Paul, an apostle, NOT OF MEN, NEITHER BY MAN, BUT BY JESUS CHRIST…” don’t you understand?

    When Jesus said the “twelve apostles” would judge the twelve tribes of Israel AND the Nephite twelve disciples, which, pray tell “twelve” will that be? With Paul called “by Jesus,” or Matthias called “by men?”

    Regarding HP, did they exist after Jesus, in either the NT or the Holy BoM?

  27. There are many ways to interpret that particular scripture. I agree that Paul was called by Christ to be an apostle, even if he was not accepted into the quorum. He was called, or sent by divine commission, as the greek suggests. This was part of the comment in the post. You are inferring that this is how all Apostles are called and I can see that this is a possibility.

    I think you are inferring a false dichotomy between Matthias and Paul. To be honest I do not see it as a real issue. To my mind there callings came through different mechanisms and they were in their place at different times. I do not fully know which twelve will judge who but it does not appear to me to be a central issue to the question at hand.

    The phrase HP is not used after Christ came to the Church in the BoM, but I have no reason to believe that the HP was removed from leading the Church after Christ. Moreover, Christ is often referred to as a HP in the NT in the epistles. Sometimes in a way that is synonymous with being an apostle. Suggesting to me that, it is at least possible, that Apostles are HP. Paul refers to HP called from among men in Heb 5.

    But to be honest this is all moving away from anything constructive and very far from what I am interested in, but thanks anyway for your comments.

  28. I love this article. First it says that there is a distiction between the office of Apostle and the apostleship role in the priesthood. We are taught that there are 3 offices in the Aaronic and Melchizedek priesthoods. Although I had not seen the office of apostle given to anyone in my time except 15 men (well there was one time when a fellow (the name exscapes me now) was called to be a counselor to the president and when the president died returned to his duties as a member of the 70). I would not question it if the 12 disciples of Jesus in the America’s were given the office of Apostle and passed it down as we do here now. At any rate that’s my thought.

  29. #31 – Thanks Zenvis. I agree that it is certainly not clear cut. I am not sure the lDS Church has it 100% right, but I also think it is v. difficult to pin down what happened before or now and for what reasons.

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