Official Declaration 2: Every Worthy Man Can Hold the Priesthood

Doctrine and Covenants and Church History Student Study Guide, (2005), 211

One principle that sets Latter-day Saints apart from every other religion is that we believe in modern revelation. Without it: What would we know about the Godhead? How would we know who was to be the President of the Church or the bishop of a ward? As the Book of Mormon prophet Jacob taught, “No man knoweth of [God’s] ways save it be revealed unto him; wherefore, … despise not the revelations of God” (Jacob 4:8). As you studyOfficial Declaration 2, ponder the great blessing that this important revelation is to Church members throughout the world.

Understanding the Scriptures

Official Declaration 2

Advise(par. 2)Tell, inform 
Extended meditation(par. 2)A long period of serious pondering 
Unanimously(par. 2)All in agreement 
Subsequently(par. 2)Later 
Expansion(par. 4)Growth and spread 
Affords(par. 4)Provides 
Preceded(par. 5)Served before 
Supplicating(par. 5)Pleading with 
Regard for(par. 6)Attention to, considering 
Insure(par. 6)Make certain 
Hearken(par. 7)Listen to and obey 
Constituent assembly(par. 8)Gathering of Saints at a general conference of the Church 
Signify(par. 8)Show 

Official Declaration 2(par. 8)—“The Word and Will of the Lord”

The Lord revealed through the Prophet Joseph Smith that the words spoken by those sustained as prophets, rs, and revelators, “when moved upon by the Holy Ghost shall be scripture, shall be the will of the Lord, shall be the mind of the Lord, shall be the word of the Lord” (D&C 68:4). On another occasion, the Lord promised Church members that as they obey the inspiredcounsel of the prophets that “the gates of hell shall not prevail against [them]; yea, and the Lord God will disperse the powers of darkness from before [them]” (D&C 21:6).

Studying the Scriptures

Do activity A as you studyOfficial Declaration 2.

Activity A iconWrite a Letter to the Editor

Elder David B. Haight, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, said that soon after the announcement on the priesthood was made to the press, he was in an airport in Chicago, Illinois: “I noticed an edition of theChicago Tribuneon the newsstand. The headline in the paper said, ‘Mormons Give Blacks Priesthood.’ And the subheading said, ‘President Kimball Claims to Have Received a Revelation.’ I bought a copy of the newspaper. I stared at one word in that subheading—claims.It stood out to me just like it was in red neon. As I walked along the hallway to make my plane connection, I thought,Here I am now in Chicago walking through this busy airport, yet I was a witness to this revelation. I was there. I witnessed it. I felt that heavenly influence. I was part of it.… Little did the editor of that newspaper realize the truth of that revelation. … Little did he know, or the printer, or the man who put the ink on the press, or the one who delivered the newspaper—little did any of them know that it was truly a revelation from God. Little did they know what I knew because I was a witness to it” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1996, 31; orEnsign,May 1996, 23).

Imagine you lived in Chicago, Illinois, in June 1978, and read the newspaper headline Elder Haight referred to. Review paragraphs 3–6 in “The Life of President Spencer W. Kimball” (pp. 208–9) and paragraphs 3–8 ofOfficial Declaration 2. Then write a letter to the editor of theChicago Tribune,giving evidence and reasons why you believe the revelation was more than just a “claim.”