Everything I have written on Owl of the Desert stands for a single proposition.
This proposition is not mine. It was taught by Joseph Smith and many others.
It speaks to the very heart of the gospel.
And yet, most of us find this proposition controversial.
Why? Because it contradicts our cultural and religious sensibilities.
What is it?
Genuine (godly) authority only arises from mutual love ― from pure love, or charity (love unfeigned).
Authority is inherently uncontrolling because love is uncontrolling.
Once a person seeks to control another, they grieve the spirit and lose their authority.
Celestial authority can only be maintained in the bonds of mutual love (which leads to "oneness").
ON THE OTHER HAND, authority that uses control results in separation, division, contention and strife.
Nevertheless, in "Babylon" we still think authority attaches to a person's position (status).
We obey them not because of their character (in fact, a lot of times authority figures are terrible people . . . just sayin') but because of the power their office or rank bestows on them.
Why Do We Obey Authority Figures?
The question we should be asking ourselves is why we honor the authority of those whose decisions are ungodly?
Well, that's simple: because they have the power to punish us.
(It's easy to see who's in charge when staring down the business end of a bayonet.)
So our obedience to their authority is enforced by implied or explicit force (under pain of penalty).
We subordinate our agency to their authority because if we don't, they'll send us to jail, or make us pay a fine, or excommunicate us.
What are we left with? In the end, we are left with shambling hierarchies that are prone to exercising unrighteous dominion (which is, simply, to exercise control over others).
Let this sink in. Why would we give others authority over us who are undeserving of our fealty?
Because we're afraid of what they'll do to us?
Let's look at a positive example: why do we follow Christ?
He earned our loyalty ― not because He was the Firstborn(there are plenty of examples where "firstborns" got passed over, like Cain, Esau, and Judah) ― not because of His status as the Son of God (Satan makes the same claim) ― but because He showed us how much He loves us through His condescension and sacrifice.
So tell me, why would we think the sign of authority is a person's rank rather than their love, when Christ is the Great Exemplar? Jesus himself gave us the Grand Key:
By this shall all men know that ye are mydisciples [i.e., that we bear Christ's imprimatur, or authority] if ye have love one to another.
Jesus did notsay, "By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have the office of an apostle."
Love is the "key" of priesthood authority (not ordination and office).
A person can be ordained to the priesthood and hold whatever office you please: if they do not show love as Christ did, they have no authority.
As Paul taught, he could profess all day long how great he was, and how much authority he had, and the wonderful things he had done, and yet, if he had "not charity, I am nothing" (1 Cor. 13:2).
We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.
Behold, the heavens withdraw themselves; the Spirit of the Lord is grieved; and when it is withdrawn, Amen to the priesthood or the authority of that man.
(D&C 121:39, 37)
Okay, let's talk about the Great and Abominable Church for a minute. (Now we're back on track!)
Why would the Great and Abominable Church prefer a system that relies on rank instead of love?
Is it because love requires sacrifice?(And isn't that just so . . . blue collar?)
Really, who wants charity if it means we have to "lose" ourselves (including our status) and become lowly servants?
I mean, all of our fairy tales have Cinderella becoming a princess. You're telling me that we're princesses who are supposed to become scullery maids?
(It's way more fun to go to the ball than to serve in the kitchens; give me the "high seats" any day of the week!)
This is why the Holy Priesthood after the Order of the Son of God is unpalatable to most (all) religions.
And what's the solution the Great and Abominable Church has come up with?
Well, that's the easy part: priestcraft.
Why is Priestcraft So Popular?
Priestcraft looks a lot like priesthood on the outside (and sometimes, it looks even better).
Priestcraft solves the unfortunate parts of the gospel ― you know, the bits about
a. real intent b. equality c. sacrifice
― replacing those things with
x. authority (rank) y. carnal security z. obedience
(If you're looking for the recipe to unrighteous dominion, there it is: x+y+z.)
Priestcraft is a win-win for leaders and lay members because it is mutually profitable:
1. The Leadership receive the praise of the world while living comfortably; and
2. The members receive the assurance that, if they pay tithes and obeisance to Leadership, they will be saved at the last day.
Except, of course, priestcraft is a sandy foundation that cannot save us in the kingdom of God.
But who doesn't like taking long walks on the beach?
The Difference Between the Church of the Lamb and the Church of the Devil
Why is the Church of the Lamb "one" while the Church of the devil is always breaking up?
Why does the Church of the devil inevitably splinter into a thousand spin-off groups and churches?
Maybe it's as simple as the fact that the Church of the devil is obsessed with authority ― which invariably leads to contentions, divisions, strife, and dissension when people disagree over whose authority is greater than whose.
. . . All while Christ stands at the gate, and employs no other servant there.
O then, my beloved brethren, come unto the Lord, the Holy One. [not unto a prophet, or pope, or president]
Behold, the way for man is narrow, but it lieth in a straight course before him, and the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel; and he employeth no servant there;
and there is none other way save it be by the gate; for he cannot be deceived, for the Lord God is his name.