Blacks in Mormonism: Cain, Able, and the Priesthood (Part 3)

Todd Noall

Todd Noall

Source Expert

Todd Noall is an author and religious scholar at Mormonism Explained with a focus on the history and theology of religion.

Fact Checked by Kevin Prince

Blacks in Mormonism: The Mark of Cain

Cain says, “Behold, thou hast driven me out this day from the face of the land, from thy face I shall be hid.” This is the context of the priesthood here from thy face I shall be hid. Because the priesthood is required in order to be in the presence of God. We learned in section 84, the Doctrine and Covenants. And I shall be a fugitive in a vac of on the earth. And it shall come to pass that he that findeth me will slay me because of my iniquities. For these things are not hid from the Lord. And the Lord said unto him whosoever slayeth thee, vengeance shall be upon him. Sevenfold and the Lord set a mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him. The Mark was not the curse. The mark was a blessing to Cain. Whatever that mark is, we don’t know what it is at this particular time, whatever that Mark is.

The Mark was a blessing to Cain because it was to keep him alive, to keep him and his posterity alive, whatever that Mark was. And we don’t know what the Mark was. We know what happens later on in time to that descent, but to that lineage.

But we don’t know what that mark is, because the Scriptures are silent on that. So God placed a mark upon upon Cain to save him. And that’s what this is telling us, to save Cain. And the Lord set the Mark upon Cain, lest any finding him should kill him. Whatever the Mark is, it was not part of the curse or burden, but given by God to protect and preserve, came from the wrath of others. We learned in the Book of Abraham, and it says there in chapter one. Now, the king of Egypt was a descendant from the loins of Ham and was a partaker of the blood of the Canaanites by birth. From this descent sprang all the Egyptians. And thus the blood of the Canaanites was preserved in the land. When this woman discovered the land, it was underwater, who afterwards settled her sons in it. And thus from Ham sprang that race which preserved the curse in the land. So through Ham’s lineage, he married Egyptus, who was a descendant of Cain, and everything was a matrilineal patriarchy. And so because everything is traced back through the mother’s line, mitochondrial line, and even and the patriarchal priesthood is traced back through the mitochondrial line, because Ham and Ham was righteous and held a priesthood, we learned that in Moses, Noah and his three sons walked with God.

They held the priesthood and walked with God. But Ham married Egyptus, who was a descendant of Cain. Therefore, being a matrilineal concept, all of Cain’s descendants were curse pertaining to that curse pertaining to the priest, as Abraham is saying, because it’s coming, because it’s matrilineal, not from Ham, not because Ham was unrighteous or wicked. Okay, any questions so far? Simple-minded or easily persuaded? Yeah, clear as mud. Now, the first governor of Egypt was established by Pharaoh, the eldest son of Egyptus, the daughter of Ham. And it was after the manner of the government of Ham, which was patriarchal. Pharaoh, being a righteous man, established his kingdom and judges people, people wisely and justly, all his days seeking earnestly to imitate the order established by the fathers in the generations of the days of the first patriarchal reign, even the reign of Adam. And also know his father, who blessed him with the blessings of the earth and the blessings of wisdom accursed him pertaining to the priesthood. So that’s that lineage that comes through Ham’s line, there’s two cradles of civilization that we know of, or what we call the two cradles of civilization in the world.

One is Egypt and the other is Mesopotamia. Both are established by the grandsons of Ham because they couldn’t hold a priesthood. And what they did is they took the endowment of power and turned it into a coronation ceremony. Thus, Egypt and Babylon become the symbols of wickedness in scripture and the two cradles of civilization because they turn that endowment of power into the ancient coronation ceremony. If we had time to go through it, we’d show you. But because the descendants of Cain were not identifiable, the policy was instituted by implication. For behold, the Lord shall curse the land with much heat, and the baroness thereof shall go forth forever. And there was a blackness that came up on all the people of Canaan. And Enik also beheld the residue of the people, which were the sons of Adam. And they were a mixture of all the seed of Adam. Save it. See the seat of Canaan. The seat of Cain were black and had not place among them. And that’s why that policy was created because not all black-skinned people in humanity are the descendants of Cain, but because we don’t know who they were, there was an implied policy in order to protect the doctrine.

It’s not had he been something different, it might be something else. The Church has recently stated that the restriction of blacks in mormonism was a policy rather than a doctrine, and this is true. The doctrine, however, is that the seat of Cain could not have the right of the priesthood. And a belief that the seat of Cain were black based on scriptural references, led to a general restrictive policy to maintain the doctrine, not knowing who might or might not be a descendant of Cain. What would be the safe policy if all we knew about the descendants of Cain was they had red hair, blue eyes and freckles? The policy would be completely different if that’s all we knew about the descendants of Cain. So the policy was instituted in order to protect the doctrine. Well, it’s a doctrine that the descendants of Cain were restricted. It’s a policy that blacks be restricted. Joseph Smith ordained Elijah Able to the priesthood. However, there was no initial question to initiate the revelation. After the ordination, Joseph translated the Book of Abraham and received the revelation that and this is what Joseph Smith said in more than one place, said that the seat of Cain would not hold the priesthood until the seat of Abel had a chance to come to the earth and fulfill their responsibility.

That’s a statement by Joseph Smith and many of the early brethren, and many even in our time, in our lifetime, said, well, Abel never had any posterity, so they’d never be able to hold the priesthood in this life. But that’s not what Joseph Smith said. Joseph Smith, all he said is descendants of Abel or Cain would not hold the priest until the descendants of Abel had an opportunity to fulfill their responsibility. And many of those brethren that said some of those things did not know and understand the doctrine of the lever right law. What was it that the seat of Cain lost? To be a minister to all the people speaking of what the responsibilities of the priesthood to minister to you, to be your servants, that they shall bear this ministry and priesthood to all nations. They just lost an authorized responsibility to administer to all those who would like to participate in the Gospel. That’s what they lost, the right to administrate, not the right to participate. There’s a big difference. The priesthood is for administration, not for participation. The seat of Cain was restricted from the administration of the Gospel, not from the  participation in the Gospel for blacks in mormonism.

There are many cultures and peoples that have a dark skin who are not the descendants of Cain. There is no rank in the kingdom. Only responsibility. Priesthood is a responsibility of service and not a requirement for salvation. We see this especially in Exodus when the children of Levi are chosen. When Moses stood at the gate of the camp and said, who is on the Lord’s side? Let him come to me. And the sons of Levi gathered themselves together. And Moses and Moses said, consecrate yourselves today to the Lord, even every man upon his son and upon his brother, that he may bestow upon you a blessing this day. And the blessing was being the tribe of Levi, bringing the tribe of Levi near and present them before Aaron the priest, that they may minister unto him and do the service of the tabernacle. That meant that all of Israel was restricted from holding the priesthood before all of Israel had it. Until this time all of Israel was able to hold the priesthood for administration. But when this event took place in the Old Testament, the priesthood is now given only to the tribe of Levi, and all the rest of Israel were restricted against the priesthood.

So this restriction has taken place often it’s administration, not participation. All of Israel could participate at the temple by bringing their sacrifices and keeping the law of Moses. They just couldn’t administrate. Am I making sense? There’s no questions. You never know if Anybody’s Catching what I’m trying to Say, and that’s what’s going on here. We learn it here, too, that they shall wait on the priest’s office. And he says, I have taken the Levites from among the children of Israel instead of all of the firstborn anciently. Every Firstborn was to hold the Priesthood, no matter what Tribe. The firstborn was to hold the priesthood. That was the administration. So the Lord says, okay, I’m going to take that away from all of the tribes of Israel. Now. Only Levi. Only that lineage. Only the Sons of Levi are going to be able to hold that priesthood. That’s the way it works in Scripture. Will the Patriarch able Every sealed man becomes a patriarch to his family. There are Grand Patriarchs who must hold a Melchizedek Priesthood authority and their responsibility for the spiritual and temporal welfare of those who outside of direct family lines. When you’re sealed, you enter into the Patriarchal Priesthood.

Every man and woman enters into that patriarchal priesthood. In the celestial kingdom are three levels of degrees. In order to obtain the highest degree of man must enter into that order of the priesthood. Meaning the new and everlasting covenant marriage. That’s a Patriarchal priesthood. And Joseph Smith said there are three priesthoods, ironic milkhesdic and patriarchal. We entered that Patriarchal Priesthood and Every and every man and Wife is a Patriarch and Matriarch to Their immediate family. And by being Sealed, I have the Authority to bless my children or Grandchildren by virtue of the Authority of the Patriarchal Priesthood, which I Hold because. I’ve been sealed. I can do that. But the second I step outside of my family line, I can’t do that. I have to have a Priesthood without father and mother. I have to have the Priesthood of the Firstborn, who’s responsible for the temporal and spiritual welfare of all his father’s posterity, and that is Melchizedek authority. So I could bless my children by virtue of the patriarchal authority, which I hold, but if I go to my neighbors or home teaching families or ministering families, I have to have another authority, and that’s the Melchizedek authority.

Now that Melchizedek Authority anciently. You had a patriarch, and then there would be another patriarch. That patriarch was responsible for the temporal and spiritual welfare of all his father’s posterity. He’s a patriarch in the Patriarchal Priesthood to his direct family line, but he has to hold the Melchizedek Priesthood if he’s going to be responsible for the temporal and spiritual welfare of all his father’s posterity. Does that make sense? Okay, that’s important to understand. The grand patriarchs must hold the Melchizedek Priesthood to function outside of their father, outside of their family line. That’s why in the Scriptures it talks about that the Priesthood is responsible for the fatherless, the widows and the orphans. What’s the common element there? There’s no patriarch. The melchizedek priesthood. The Melchizedek authority is to be a stand in for a missing or unworthy patriarch. This is why women will not hold the Melchizedek Priesthood. They are a matriarch in the Patriarchal Priesthood. They hold the Patriarchal Priesthood if they’ve been sealed with their husbands. But the Melchizedek Priesthood is a substitute for a missing or unworthy patriarch to make sure that they get all the blessings and are taken care of temporarily and spiritually.

I hope that makes a little sense. Anyway, the patriarch is a prophet, priest and king to his family. A prophet to give inspired guidance, a priest to provide the necessary ordinances, salvation and exaltation, and a king to provide the temporal protection and prosperity. That’s the way that division was anciently a prophet, priest and king. So a patriarch becomes a prophet, priest and king to his family. If you hold a malchizedek authority, then you can be that priest and provide those blessings for those who have a missing patriarch. The patriarch is a prophet, priest and king. The birthright son is not only responsible for his own family, but by virtue of the Patriarchal Priesthood by virtue of the Patriarchal Priesthood that he holds, but is responsible for the spiritual and temporal welfare of his father’s posterity, which requires the authority of the firstborn to be responsible for those outside the immediate family. A different authorities need Melchizedek authority, which is the authority of Christ the first, born and birthright son of the Father, with an inherent authority for the spiritual and temporal welfare of all his father’s creation. Go ahead.

So, in the last class you were talking about, they left Adam, joined Eve because you cleave unto your wife, you join her family. And now all of a sudden we’re seeing it all Israelite tradition. The woman is the man’s family and they’re responsible if she doesn’t have a child that marry the brother and then the brother.

Right? That’s the leverite law, because she has to receive a birthright, her first born son, or the firstborn that opened. The firstborn son that opens the womb has the right to the birthright blessings or the inheritance AAA portion of the inheritance of his father’s family. But it’s the matriarch who chooses. It still comes back to the matriarch. The matriarch has that responsibility because only she knows who her birthright, who her first born son is and who the father is. And that’s why even today you can become Jewish. But you have to be Jewish through your mother’s line or your grandmother’s line, not your father’s line. But the patriarch is responsible for providing and protecting that matriarch and her children, providing a firstborn for her children, for her. That’s why Rebecca says, of what value will be my life if Jacob marries the daughters of heath? Her purpose will have failed if they can’t hold that priesthood, hold that patriarchal priesthood. Anyway, the first born and right, the Grand Patriarch is the birthright son, who should also be the first born son. There’s a difference between birthright and firstborn, however. The birthright goes to the first righteous born son, who may not be the firstborn.

Reuben was the first born son, and you can’t get away from that. But Joseph, even though he’s number eleven, is the birthright son and Joseph is the birthright son. Because the order goes from the first born of the first wife to the first born of the second wife. It’s the one that opens the matrix, the one that opens the womb. And so it doesn’t go to the second born of the first wife. It goes to the first born of the second wife and then to the first born of the third wife. And then concubinical children only begin counting after all of the natural children are gone. Does that make sense? Okay. Adam is the first man, the father of the race, the father of all mankind, even blacks in mormonism. Adam is the first father and the patriarch of humanity being the first man. Adam is the Firstling of humanity, but not necessarily the first born or the birthright son. You have different sacrifices in Israel. One is the Firstling of the flock and one is the firstborn. Adam is the Firstling of the flock. Christ is the firstborn and Christ is the birthright. So that’s why the sacrifices are different.

So you have Adam, then you have Cain, then you have Abel, and then you have Seth, and then you have Bubba, and then you have Billy Bob. We don’t know who they are, but we only have three names there. But Cain’s offering is rejected, Abel’s offering is accepted, and Abel is chosen to be the patriarchal leader and patriarch for all of Adam’s posterity. So he’s responsible to make sure that Billy and Baba Bob’s children and grandchildren and great grandchildren all have the gospel opportunities and everything that they need. The younger is often chosen to be the Priesthood leader and the patriarch. This is a real problem. It sets a pattern. We see it with Michael and Lucifer, as we learn in the Scriptures, that Adam, that Satan was before Adam in Section 29 of the Doctrine Covenants. And that’s the argument that we see going on in Scripture. We have Cain and Abel and Cain. We have Seth and Japheth. We have Isaac and Ishmael. We have Jacob and Esau. We have Joseph and Reuben. We have Ephraim and Manassa, and we have Moses and Aaron, and we even have Nephi and Layman. We often see that the younger son, because the birthright goes to the first righteous born son.

You can’t change the firstborn, but the birthright, those responsible in that patriarchal authority goes to the first righteous born son. And that’s why we see this pattern of the younger being chosen over the elder. So we have Adam, and then again we go down. Then Abel is chosen to be the new patriarch. Under him, Abel becomes the Grand Patriarch, responsible for all his posterity. And so Cain ends up killing Abel, and Abel is then responsible. He’s the priesthood leader of Cain and Seth and Bubba and Billy Bob For this reason, the Priesthood is traced back through Abel and his posterity. But because Abel had no kids, there’s an issue. Cain murdered his Priesthood leader, hoping that he and his posterity would become the patriarchal leadership, the kings throughout the world’s, temporal existence. And we learned this in Section 1221 that we just talked about. They shall not have the right of the Priesthood, nor the posterity after them from generation to generation. With the murder of Abel, the patriarchal leadership moves to the next righteous born son. But Seth, God hath pointed me another seed. Instead of Abel, who came slew, that becomes Seth. Well, there’s the grand patriarchs, adam seth.

Abel, because Seth is the replacement for Abel Enos, which means enos. Under the Leverite law, enos would have been Seth’s son, who married Abel’s widow. And he’s actually sealed to Abel. That’s the leverite, Law. If a woman marries the firstborn and he dies before she has a son, she is to marry the brother. And the first born son that she has is sealed to her and her first husband and is the lineage of the husband. This is the lever, right? Law in the Old Testament. So that’s why the slash between Abel and Seth so Enos, even though he’s sired by Seth, is Abel’s posterity. Does that make sense? This is the Leverite law in the Old Testament. And so we see it adam, Seth, the Enos, Canaan, Mahodil, Jared, Enik, Mathus, Willem, Noah, Shamar, Fox and Rui repalek the priesthood is traced back through Abel rather than Seth and D&C 84, which we talked about and the conspiracy that takes place. The lineage through Abel implies the Leverite Law of marriage was in fact, the custom of widow marrying your deceased husband brother, sometimes the near heir. The word has nothing to do with the name Levi or Biblical Levites.

It’s Levite, which has to mean deal with the old English trying to get through this quickly. The Levarite Law is talked about in Deuteronomy 25. We know it was in existence in Genesis because we see it with the story of Judah and Tamar. If you remember, Tamar marries Er, who’s the oldest son of Judah and doesn’t have any kids. So she then marries Onan, which is the brother, and he knows that she’s going to get a double portion, so she makes sure she doesn’t get pregnant. The Lord takes him out, and the next son is Sila, and so she’s supposed to marry Cela. And Cela takes off when he knows he has to marry his old aunt, and so he takes off. And then she sets up the red light district when Judah is on his way to the auction. And Judah stops in and she asks some pawn because the price is too high of the patriarchal robe, the ring, the signet ring of the patriarch and the staff, the priest representing the priesthood, she asks for that for pawn. And then she becomes the word gets around that she’s in a motherly way.

And they have a family meeting, and Judah invites her back and thinking to get rid of her and says, okay, you’ve been doing some indiscretions there. And by the way, who’s the father? Which was the mistake you’ve made? And she says, Just a minute. She goes out to her Volkswagen, brings back in the robe and the staff and the signet ring, and Mrs. Judah immediately recognizes it and says, you have some splaining to do. But anyway, that’s the story of the Leverite Law. But it’s there for a reason. It’s there so that we can understand it anyway. Well, the burden of Cain is the Earth would deal not yield for the strength of be a fugitive in a vagabond as posteriority and not have the right of the priest. Now, keeping in mind that Joseph Smith said the seat of Cain would not hold a priesthood until the seat of Abel has a chance to come to the Earth and fulfill their responsibility, the patriarchal responsibility to the descendants of Abel, and that’s the descendants that we just talked about. Then we go down to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob or Joseph and Ephraim, and then in our dispensation, who does it go to?

Now, this is that lineage, the recollect lineage of Abel. How does it continue down through joseph Smith said that the seed of Cain would not be able to hold the priest until the seat of Abel had an opportunity to come to the Earth and fulfill their responsibility. What is that lineage in our time period? Church patriarch. Okay, who’s the first church patriarch? Joseph Smith, Senior. Okay. Brigham Young said, the blood of Joseph that was sold in Egypt, the blood of Joseph runs pure in the veins of Joseph Smith and his father pure. Joseph Smith Senior is a direct line. Joseph isn’t the firstborn. Joseph Smith, Jr. Is not the firstborn. Joseph Smith Senior is the patriarch to the church. He is that direct line of Abel. Okay, and who’s next? Hiram Smith. Hiram Smith has a son, Joseph F. Smith, but he becomes the prophet. And then it goes to John Smith. And from John Smith, Eldridge G. Smith, he just died just a few years ago. Was he 106 or something like that? I think 106, he just died a few years ago. So that’s the lineage of Abel, Adam, Abel, Enos, Cain, and Mahal, Jared, right on down to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Ephraim, Joseph Smith, Senior, Hiron Smith, Joseph Smith, F.Smith, John Smith, Eldridge G. Smith. Keeping in mind, Joseph Smith said that the seed of Cain would not hold the Priesthood until the seed of Abel had an opportunity to come to the Earth and fulfill their responsibility. The revelation about the Priesthood was given in June of 1978, and was read to the Church in September 30, 1978, at the October conference. Within a few months of the announcements, another revelatory event happened to fulfill the prophetic statement of Joseph Smith. What was it? Elder G. Smith was released. President Tanner, under the direction of President Kimball, read the letter to the Church. Because of the increased number, large increase of the number of state patriarchs and the availability of patriarchal service throughout the world, we now designate Eldridge G. Smith as a patriarch Emeritus, which means that he is honorably relieved of all his duties and responsibilities pertaining to the office of the patriarch of the Church. Keeping in mind Joseph Smith’s statement that the seat of Cain would not hold the Priesthood until the seed of Abel had an opportunity to come to the Earth and fulfill their responsibility, the same time that the Priesthood is given to all worthy males, the seat of Abel had fulfilled their responsibility in the released.

It wasn’t because of pressure, it was because of revelation. The Lord knows the end from the beginning, he has prepared everything, and it was fulfilled just as Joseph Smith prophesied and stated, even though many of the brethren had said, well, Abel never had any kids, therefore it’ll never happen in this life. Unknowing of the Leverite Law, and that the Priesthood line was traced back through Abel and the Doctrine Covenants. The release of Elder G. Smith as the patriarch of the Church took place at virtually the same time the Priesthood was made available to all worthy males. President Kimball’s inspiration and timing was not just incredible, but inspired. As these events unfolded, according to the prophecy of Joseph Smith that the seat of Cain would not hold the priesthood until the seat of Abel had a chance to fulfill their responsibility on Earth. The revelation on the priest in 1978 happened in concert with the release of patriarch Smith and was no accident. Even if the connection was not fully understood, the seat of Cain could not hold the priesthood until the seated of Abel. So it doesn’t matter whether the prophet, President Kimball or anybody else knew that.

It doesn’t matter whether they knew it or understand this concept. It happened by revelation, and it happened at the right time. And it happened in the exact same way that Joseph Smith said it would happen. And it was inspired in the right time. Keeping in mind, too, that the seed of Cain was restricted from administration, not participation. Okay? The priesthood is given to all worthy males, including blacks in mormonism, and the descendant of Abel is released from their responsibilities. Okay? Any questions? I finished with a minute to spare.

By Todd Noall, Source Expert

Todd Noall is an author and religious scholar at Mormonism Explained with a focus on the history and theology of religion.

Fact Checked by Mr. Kevin Prince, Source Expert

Kevin Prince is a religious scholar and host of the Gospel Learning Youtube channel. His channel has garnered over 41,000 subscribers and accumulated over 4.5 million views. Mr. Prince also created the Gospel Learning App, a reliable platform where individuals seeking truth can access trustworthy answers to religious questions from top educators worldwide.

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