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Joseph Smith - Book of Commandments

This is the first published version of Joseph Smith’s “revelations”. Unfortunately, Joseph Smith, Sidney Rigdon, and Oliver Cowdery didn't realize that you can’t easily re-write your own history very well after you’ve already published it.

His subsequently published versions of these early “revelations” in the “Doctrine and Covenants” were changed to give (among other things) the church a divine origin based on restoration through angelic holders of 'priesthood keys'.

Most members of the Mormon church today think that John the Baptist actually appeared and restored the Aaronic Priesthood and that Peter, James, and John actually appeared to restore the Melchizedek Priesthood in 1829. The idea for these events didn’t occur to the early church leaders until after this book was published (although Quinn claims that the Melchizedek Priesthood was restored in 1830--over a year after the traditional history claims it was restored).

See D. Michael Quinn's The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power for more on this subject and the many changes that went into other aspects of the early Mormon church. In Quinn's book, you will also be able to find out the contents of many other revelations which went unpublished. For many more previously unpublished early church revelations see this book. [an error occurred while processing this directive]