Section 7: The Account of John The Beloved


This section was significantly changed between the Book of Commandments and the 1835 edition of the Doctrine and Covenants.


Date Given: April 1829

Location Given: Harmony, Pennsylvania – Hale Farm

Date Canonized: August 17, 1835

Background: This revelation came while Joseph Smith Jr. and Oliver Cowdery were transcribing The Book of Mormon. They both realized that the other had a different opinion on the fate of John the Beloved in light of John 21:20-23, 3rd Nephi 13:12-24, and 4th Nephi 1:15. The question was whether this apostle had passed away or if he was still alive.

The story goes that this revelation was written down by John the Beloved and hidden away. It later somehow came into the possession of Joseph Smith Jr., who then translated it with his seer stone.

What was originally published in The Book of Commandments is significantly different from what is presented here. It has been speculated that between the publication of The Book of Commandments and The Doctrine and Covenants that Smith’s work on the Inspired Version influenced these changes and expansions.


A. And the Lord said unto me, John, my beloved, what desirest thou? For if ye shall ask what you will, it shall be granted unto you.

B. And I said unto him, Lord, give unto me power over death, that I may live and bring souls unto thee.

C. And the Lord said unto me, Verily, verily I say unto thee, because thou desirest this thou shalt tarry until I come in my glory, and shalt prophesy before nations, kindreds, tongues, and people.


A. And for this cause the Lord said unto Peter, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? For he desiredst of me that he might bring souls unto me; but thou desiredst that thou might speedily come unto me in my kingdom.

B. I say unto thee, Peter, this was a good desire, but my beloved has desired that he might do more, or a greater work yet among men, than what he has before done; yea, he has undertaken a greater work;

C. therefore, I will make him as flaming fire, and a ministering angel; he shall minister for those who shall be heirs of salvation who dwell on the earth;

D. and I will make thee to minister for him and for thy brother James; and unto you three I give this power and the keys of this ministry until I come.


Verily I say unto you, Ye shall both have according to your desires, for ye both joy in that which ye have desired.