When the LDS church was organized on April 6, 1830, it’s official name was The Church of Christ. Four years later, in 1834, it’s moniker was changed to The Church of Latter-day Saints. The final name alteration occurred in 1838. By revelation received through Joseph Smith, we are now known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
What is the meaning of the phrase “of Jesus Christ?” My understanding is that it signifies the church belongs to Jesus. This is His church. Well, that sounds pretty good to me. After all, I’ve decided to follow His teachings and example. What better place to worship than in the church that belongs to him.
So, what is the meaning of the phrase “of Latter-day Saints.” I’m going to interpret it the very same way. The church belongs to the Latter-day Saints, the citizens of this restored organization!
Man, do I like that. The church belongs both to Jesus and to His followers. No wonder He instituted the Law of Common Consent. We are partners in church ownership and church GOVERNANCE. “All things must be done . . . by common consent in the church.”
This is not the church of prophets or apostles, of seers or revelators. We have them. And, of course, they are a vital part of church GOVERNANCE. But, the church does not belong to them. Rather, it belongs to the rank-n-file citizenship & to the Lord.
This opens a whole new perspective on the Law of Common Consent. We are fellow citizens in the Household of God. How much more important this makes the regimen of our quarterly voting to express approval or disapproval to the leaders the Lord has put in place.
Today, I have a greater love for my church. Jesus values me and my opinion as an equity partner in his earthly organization.