Delving into the Mysteries: Argument for an ‘Arcana Doctrina’ In a Priesthood, Relief Society, and Gospel Doctrine class one hears the often repeated but never supported injunction against ‘delving into the mysteries.” Why is the belief in such a prohibition so prevalent in the Church when scripture encourages the study of the mysteries? What does the Greek word, mystery, actually mean? What did it mean to Paul who wrote and spoke in Greek? What did it mean to Joseph Smith and the other early presidents of the Church? What does it mean to modern presidents? Seventeenth-century biblical scholar, Jean Daill’e, coined the term arcana doctrina in reference to secret traditions, which Christ taught only to his Apostles because they were too sacred for the general membership of the primitive Christian church. Daill’e presented evidence that the Apostles later taught these secret traditions to a number of trusted presbyters who taught them in turn, during the post-Apostolic period, to such a select few that these traditions were eventually lost to Christianity. Does the LDS faith possess an arcana doctrina? If so, then where are they taught and who is teaching them? If not, then why does the LDS faith lack what was present in the primitive church as organized by Jesus Christ? I hope to answer these and other questions in my presentation.
Scot Denhalter, Steve Smoot