Our son was presented with a question about women and the priesthood and he came to us for clarification, so he could give her a better answer. This was his father’s reply. The next post will be his mother’s input.
Petitioning the church to allow women to have the priesthood is a cause that stirs people up. More than likely, these members will eventually become disaffected from the Church. They don’t understand the doctrine of the priesthood.
Men and women are completely equal in the eyes of God. He is not a respecter of persons. Our Heavenly Father is 100% fair and treats all of His children the same. If a man or a woman follows Jesus Christ, and keeps the commandments, they have the complete promise of the Lord. If a man, or woman, doesn’t keep the commandments they have no promise, unless they repent.
The doctrine of the priesthood is misunderstood in the church, but it is clearly taught in D&C 121:34-45. To paraphrase, many are called and few are chosen and why are they not chosen? Because they don’t learn this one lesson: that the rights of the priesthood are inseparably connected with the powers of heaven and the principles of righteousness. Priesthood only has power when exercised under the principles of righteousness. Priesthood has no power unless it is used to serve others, lift others, bless others, and is used without any pride or ego. As soon as a priesthood holder uses the priesthood outside these bounds, the priesthood he holds has no power.
Now, most priesthood holders have good intentions, but we are all imperfect and make mistakes. When priesthood holders don’t repent, and try to cover it up, that’s when sisters and others feel that they are not heard and represented. In church governing models there is a hierarchy of responsibility. A righteous woman follows a righteous man and a righteous man follows Jesus Christ. When Jesus Christ commands, the righteous man obeys. This responsibility to obey is huge and requires complete humility and service and righteousness. When the righteous man commands, the righteous woman obeys. This responsibility to obey is huge and requires complete humility and service and righteousness. Together they guide and teach their children toward righteousness. But in the eyes of the world, this idea becomes warped. Satan fought against this hierarchy in the Spirit World and he continues the fight here on earth.
Brothers have the power of the priesthood and sisters have the power of procreation (gestation and birth). Both are needed to create life but both have great power. One has the priesthood (only works in righteousness) and one has the power of life (only here on earth and in the highest degree of the Celestial Kingdom is this power given). Only together can they become Gods. There is no such thing as a single male God or a single female God. Single male and female celestial beings are angels and not Gods. To become like our Heavenly Father it takes a man and a woman both using the divine power that Heavenly Father has given them so that, if they make it to the celestial kingdom, they can continue to use the power of the priesthood and procreation together creating worlds and children without number.
Another way to put it: Only those couples who righteously use the power of the priesthood and procreation together in this life will be able to use it in the next life as Gods.
Regarding Celestial Marriage, or the New and Everlasting Covenant of Marriage, a man can have more than one wife. There are two reasons. First, there will be more righteous celestial women than men. The data on this is very simple. In every ward and branch in the entire church there are always more faithful sisters than brothers. Since righteous sisters who earn the celestial kingdom cannot be denied all the blessings of the Church, including becoming like God (being a couple and married so that you can use the power of the priesthood and procreation into the eternities), plurality allows them this blessing. Second, only Gods can have children like our Heavenly Father and one of the key purposes of marriage is to properly use the power of procreation and have children. If a woman had multiple husbands, we wouldn’t know who is the father of the children. Not knowing who the father is introduces doubt and confusion into the family, and destroys the plan of God (yes technology could maybe detect this, but technology isn’t full proof and only our generation has had this and we may not always have access to it for one reason or another). This also corrupts the hierarchy of responsibility.
The bottom line is people will use doubt and questions to create causes that confuse people. This is the best work of Satan. Questioning the doctrine of the church is fine when it brings light and increased knowledge. But when it stirs up the soul into anger, doubt, and bitterness, and causes a person to lose their testimony and stop obeying the commandments, Satan has caught them in his chains and is slowly dragging that person down.
Hope this helps!