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Moroni 2


A Confirming Covenant Witness

      Mormon 8 -- Moroni


Moroni 2:2 On As Many As They Laid Their Hands, Fell the Holy Ghost:


     According to John Tvedtnes, anyone can make a promise to return to a particular subject and give further details, but it if Joseph Smith would have been making up the Book of Mormon narrative as he went along in dictation (which he dictated only once through to Oliver Cowdery) it would have been difficult for Joseph Smith to fulfill all such promises. As an abridger of the Nephite records, Mormon makes several important promises which are later fulfilled. One example is found in 3 Nephi 18:36-37. Here Mormon wrote how Jesus had given the twelve disciples "power to give the Holy Ghost. And I will show unto you hereafter that this record is true." In 3 Nephi 19:13, he told how the Holy Ghost fell on the twelve after their baptism, and in 4 Nephi 1:1, he wrote that those baptized by the twelve "did also receive the Holy Ghost." But it was Moroni who quoted Christ's actual words to the twelve (left out by Mormon in 3 Nephi 18): "ye shall have power that to him upon whom ye shall lay your hands, ye shall give the Holy Ghost" (Moroni 2:2), then adding, "and on as many as they laid their hands, fell the Holy Ghost" [John A. Tvedtnes, "Mormon As an Abridger of Ancient Records," in The Most Correct Book, pp. 9-10]


Moroni 2:2 For Thus Do Mine Apostles:


     According to Donl Peterson, the Nephite Twelve "disciples" are never referred to as Apostles in the text of the Book of Mormon, with the possible exception of a passage in the book of Moroni. Here Moroni records the words of Christ to them concerning the bestowal of the Holy Ghost: "ye shall give the Holy Ghost; and in my name shall ye give it, for thus do mine apostles." (Moroni 2:2).

     Peterson surmises that there is wisdom in not referring to them as Apostles in the Book of Mormon, a book used so extensively in proselyting, since it would tend to confuse those who might assume we were minimizing the status of, or even replacing, the Jewish Twelve in our theology. The Prophet Joseph Smith referred to the Nephite twelve as Apostles when he penned a letter to a non-member newspaper editor in Chicago:

           This book [the Book of Mormon] also tells us that our Savior made His appearance upon this continent after His resurrection; that He planted the gospel here in all its fulness, and richness, and power, and blessing; that they had Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers, and Evangelists; the same order, the same priesthood, the same ordinances, gifts, powers, and blessings, as were enjoyed on the eastern continent" (History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, ed. B. H. Roberts, 7 vols., [Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1932-51] 4:538).


     George Q. Cannon explained that "it was with Peter, who was the senior Apostle there, that the keys rested. He was at the head of that dispensation; therefore, those that received the apostleship on this land were to be judged by the Twelve at Jerusalem" (October 29, 1882, Journal of Discourses 23:360) [H. Donl Peterson, Moroni: Ancient Prophet Modern Messenger, p. 59] [See Mormon 3:18]