Abraham 1:1–4

Abraham desires greater peace, happiness, and rest; to possess greater knowledge; to be a greater follower of righteousness; to be a father of many nations and a prince of peace; to receive instructions; to keep the commandments of God; and to hold the Melchizedek priesthood.

1 In the land of the Chaldeans, at the residence of my fathers, I, Abraham, saw that it was needful for me to obtain another place of residence;
2 And, finding there was greater happiness and peace and rest for me, I sought for the blessings of the fathers, and the right whereunto I should be ordained to administer the same; having been myself a follower of righteousness, desiring also to be one who possessed great knowledge, and to be a greater follower of righteousness, and to possess a greater knowledge, and to be a father of many nations, a prince of peace, and desiring to receive instructions, and to keep the commandments of God, I became a rightful heir, a High Priest, holding the right belonging to the fathers.
3 It was conferred upon me from the fathers; it came down from the fathers, from the beginning of time, yea, even from the beginning, or before the foundation of the earth, down to the present time, even the right of the firstborn, or the first man, who is Adam, or first father, through the fathers unto me.
4 I sought for mine appointment unto the Priesthood according to the appointment of God unto the fathers concerning the seed.

President John Taylor said:

“Associated with [the Melchizedek] priesthood there were certain powers and privileges. These Abraham possessed and enjoyed. Some people think that he was a kind of a shepherd with very few more ideas than a mushroom; that he lived in the dark ages and did not comprehend much; that he was not intelligent and had a species of what we term nowadays ‘old fogyism.’ But if we examine into his character and the position he occupied, and if we understand something about the principles he promulgated, we shall find that he was another character entirely.

“In giving his history he tells us that ‘[h]e sought for the blessings of the fathers, and the right whereunto he should be ordained to administer the same.’ He further says—’Having been myself a follower of righteousness, desiring also to be one who possessed great knowledge, and to be a great follower of righteousness, and to possess a greater knowledge, and to be a father of many nations, a prince of peace, and desiring to receive instructions, and to keep the commandments of God, I became a rightful heir, a High Priest, holding the right belonging to the fathers. It was conferred upon me from the fathers; it came down from the fathers, from the beginning of time, yea, even from the beginning, or before the foundation . . . of the earth, down to the present time, even the right of the firstborn, or the first man, who [is] Adam, or first father, through the fathers unto me.’ . . . [H]aving found out that he had a right to the priesthood, he, therefore, sought an ordination, and he was ordained by Melchizedek to the Melchizedek priesthood. . . .

“Now, this was the kind of a man that Abraham was. And his heart and feelings and affections were drawn out after God. And God blessed him and said unto him, ‘That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thee, and thy seed shall be as the stars of heaven,’ &c. And further the Lord told him, ‘And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because thou hast obeyed my word.’ And hence he occupied a very important position. And, as I before said, being a patriarch he had the gospel and the priesthood belonging to it, namely, the Melchizedek priesthood.”

(In Journal of Discourses, 21:244–45.)

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