Revelation and regular members

We think of revelation by the Holy Ghost as being largely unnecessary in the lives of “regular members”. I am not talking about warnings, though certainly those are a type of revelation. I am not talking merely about promptings to do service, though certainly those are a type of revelation. I am talking about learning truth by the Holy Ghost.

We think that callings impart an ability to receive revelation. But no, that is not true. Feasting on the words of Christ by the light of Christ and by the Holy Ghost over the years prepares us. Strictly denying ourselves of all ungodliness prepares us by cutting that which offends the Holy Ghost out of our lives. Saving the souls of men prepares us by bringing the Holy Ghost into our lives.

When we get a calling, our ability to receive revelation is what we bring to the table, not a benefit of the calling itself. If we have gained keys with our calling, then who we are allowed to direct by an actual statement of revelation has changed.

But our ability to receive revelation is what we bring to the table, not what is handed to us with the calling. No matter our calling, our chief matter in life is to gain eternal life. We needed the ability to gain revelation in that matter before the calling as much as we did after, and it remains the chief question of our mortal probation.

Joseph Smith said “God hath not revealed anything to Joseph, but what He will make known unto the Twelve, and even the least Saint may know all things as fast as he is able to bear them”.

The terms on which revelation are granted are unchanging. The right to lead others by a statement of revelation depends on our keys.

D&C 35:25 And Israel shall be saved in mine own due time; and by the keys which I have given shall they be led, and no more be confounded at all.

So the day after a man becomes a patriarch, he may do a new thing with whatever ability to receive revelation he has. But his ability to acquire revelation remains the same.

The day after a man becomes a bishop, he may do a new thing with the ability he has to receive revelation. But his ability to be guided by the Holy Ghost is what he brought to the table. He got the gift of the Holy Ghost for being a member, not for being the Bishop.

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John Robertson

I am nothing more than a regular member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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