Alma 13: The Priesthood of God

Book of Mormon Student Study Guide, (2000), 107


Priesthood is the authority of God delegated to man to minister for the salvation of His children. Heavenly Father chose men in the premortal life who He knew would be able to help Him in mortality. How did He know whom to select? Alma explained this and helped us understand the great responsibility that rests upon those who receive the priesthood. After reading Alma 13 you will be able to explain why the priesthood is important and what the Lord expects of those who hold this power.

Understanding the Scriptures

Alma 13

Cite your minds forward (v. 1)Ask you to think about the beginning
Foreknowledge of God, foreknowledge of all things (vv. 3, 7)God’s ability to know the future in advance
Sanctified (v. 11)Made clean from sin
Garments were washed white (v. 11)Sins were forgiven
Abhorrence (v. 12)Hatred
Fruit meet for (v. 13)Good works that satisfy the requirements of
Type (v. 16)Symbol, likeness
Waxed (v. 17)Become
Wrest (v. 20)Distort, twist the meaning of

Alma 13:1–18—“The Holy Order of God”

The phrase “holy order of God,” or a form of it, appears often in Alma 13. It refers to the Melchizedek Priesthood. Before Melchizedek’s day that priesthood “was called the Holy Priesthood, after the Order of the Son of God.

“But out of respect or reverence to the name of the Supreme Being, to avoid the too frequent repetition of his name, they, the church, in ancient days, called that priesthood after Melchizedek, or the Melchizedek Priesthood” (D&C 107:3–4).

Studying the Scriptures

Do activity A and activity B or C as you study Alma 13.

Activity A iconExplain What It Means

As you read Alma 13:1–6, summarize the message in your own words.

Activity B iconInterview a Priesthood Holder

Read Alma 13:7–13 with someone who holds the Melchizedek Priesthood. Ask the following questions and write his responses:

  1. 1.

    In your opinion, what is the most important doctrine taught in these verses?

  2. 2.

    Why do you think it is a privilege to hold the Melchizedek Priesthood?

  3. 3.

    What do you think it would be like if all priesthood holders matched the description in verse 12?

Activity C iconIntroduce a Church Leader

You have been asked to introduce Melchizedek as a fireside speaker. Use Alma 13:14–19 to gather some facts to use in your introduction. Write down what you would say to introduce this great man.