King David prophesied that God would confirm Jesus Christ’s authority with these words: “Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek” (Psalm 110:4).
Alma later explained to the people of Ammonihah that Melchizedek had established peace in the land by his faith and by the power of the priesthood. “There were many before him, and also there were many afterwards, but none were greater” (Alma 13:14-18).
In 1835, Joseph Smith received a revelation in which the Lord explained that before the time of Melchizedek, His power and authority had been called, “the Holy Priesthood, after the Order of the Son of God.” But after that time, because Melchizedek “was such a great high priest,” and to avoid casual repetition of the name of God, it became known in the church as the Melchizedek Priesthood. (See Doctrine and Covenants 107:1-4.)
Joseph Smith also learned in this revelation that the Melchizedek Priesthood provides access to “all the spiritual blessings of the church” (Doctrine and Covenants 107:18). President Russell M. Nelson clarified that this power is available to men and women who make sacred covenants with God:
Because the Melchizedek Priesthood has been restored, both covenant-keeping women and men have access to “all the spiritual blessings of the church” or, we might say, to all the spiritual treasures the Lord has for His children.
Every woman and every man who makes covenants with God and keeps those covenants, and who participates worthily in priesthood ordinances, has direct access to the power of God.“Spiritual Treasures,” General Conference, October 2019
He specifically urged the women of the church to study section 107 of the Doctrine in Covenants in order to better understand how to access God’s power.
Here are a few of the principles taught in this revelation, with some relevant blog posts:
- The priesthood provides structure for our worship (v. 3): Without Beginning of Days or End of Years – Alma 13:8-9
- Decisions have greater power when they are unanimous and when they are made in a spirit of humility and love (v. 27-31): “With One Voice”.
- It is appropriate, and even expected, for priesthood authority to be delegated (v. 38-39): He Consecrated All Their Priests and All Their Teachers – Mosiah 23:16-18.
- Priesthood is intended to be handed down from parent to child (v. 40): “Prepare the Minds of Their Children”.
- Presidents of organizations are expected to “sit in council” with those they lead (v. 89): Gifts and Callings – Moroni 3:4.
- We must all learn our duty and fulfill it diligently (v. 99-100): “The Gift of His Calling” – Moroni 7:2.