Preface to RLDS Doctrine and Covenants

Printing the Latter-Day Revelations

The prophet Joseph Smith, Jr., received various revelations for the benefit of the church of Jesus Christ and certain individuals, giving counsel and instruction to the Saints. Some revelations were printed in Independence, Missouri, as the "Book of Commandments." But while the book was being printed, the press was destroyed by a mob on July 20, 1833 (see heading for Section 64).

On September 24, 1834, in Kirtland, Ohio, a high council authorized a second attempt at printing the revelations. A committee was chosen, consisting of Joseph Smith, Jr., Oliver Cowdery, Sidney Rigdon, and Frederick G. Williams, to prepare the revelations for printing. The quorums of the church met in Kirtland on August 17, 1835, to consider the work of the committee. The quorums unanimously voted to accept the work as "the doctrine and covenants of their faith." Minutes of the meeting are included in the RLDS Doctrine and Covenants as Section 108A (the "Introduction" in this edition).

Editions of the Doctrine and Covenants published by the Reorganized Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints included sections published prior to 1845, along with additional revelations received through prophets of the RLDS Church. In 1970, the RLDS General Conference voted to move a few sections to appendices, as they were considered to be primarily of historical value. In this edition, most sections are printed in their numerical and chronological order, but Sections 107, 109, and 110 are included in the "Historical Appendix."

About This Edition

Between 2012 and 2015, a committee of believers in the restored gospel of Jesus Christ prepared the scriptures for printing under the auspices of Cumorah Books, Inc. The committee carefully reviewed the text of the Doctrine and Covenants and compared it with previously printed versions.

Section headings in this edition provide concise summaries of the historical background and the content of each section. This edition includes improved punctuation, minor editorial corrections, a new concordance, and other supplementary materials. The committee has labored to provide a clear, correct, and useful edition of the RLDS Doctrine and Covenants. It is our fervent prayer that God's Holy Spirit will richly bless all readers in their study of His holy word.

Because there are a few differences between printed editions, the committee evaluated alternative word choices. In a few cases, a different word was chosen to correct an error in grammar or usage.

Examples This Edition Explanation
22:7b "my natural" Corrected use of pronoun; used instead of "mine."
36:1i "upon" Agrees with Gen. 7:10; used instead of "unto."
42:1a "yourselves" Used in 1835 edition instead of "themselves" and agrees with "ye elders."
52:3d "come" Corrected verb form of "cometh."
53:2a "give" Corrected verb form of "giveth."
56:5a "day" Used in 1835 edition instead of "days"; compare with Section 56:1a; 107:2b, d.
62:3a "this blessing" Used in 1835 edition instead of "his blessing."
83:5a "offices" Used instead of "office."
108:5c "straight" Used instead of "strait"; agrees with Section 32:2f; Mat. 3:29; Mk. 1:2; Lu. 3:4, and others.
119:1a "apostle" Used instead of "apostles" (see also 129:6a).
129:7a "patriarch" Used instead of "patriarchs."