Although God had promised in the law of Moses, that if any man not of the tribe and family of Levi and Aaron, should approach the office of priest, he would surely die; he is represented by Smith as blessing, approbating, and sustaining another family in this appropriated office. The God of Abraham or Joseph Smith must then be a liar!! And who will hesitate to pronounce him an impostor? This lie runs through his records for the first six hundred years of his story.(2)
Now, as it is, and very correctly too, Lehi and his sons were blessed with the high priesthood–the Melchesedek priesthood. They never made any pretence [sic] that they were descendants of Aaron, or ever received that priesthood which was conferred upon him by the hand of Moses, at the direction of the Lord.
How did it happen that Moses had authority to consecrate Aaron a priest? Where did he get his authority to arrange the tabernacle, ark, &c.? Who laid hands upon him? Had he authority to "come near" when the Lord was entreated by sacrifice? He was Aaron's brother, to be sure, but Aaron was the high priest.
Should Mr. C. [Alexander Campbell] finally learn, that Moses received the holy priesthood, after the order of Melchesedek, under the hand of Jethro, his father in-law, that clothed with this authority he set Israel in order, and by commandment ordained Aaron to a priesthood less than that, and that Lehi was a priest after this same order, perhaps he will not raise so flimsy an assertion, as he does when he says the validity of the book of Mormon is destroyed because Lehi offered sacrifice; and perhaps, also, he may not be quite so lavish with his familiar titles as he was when he called brother Smith "as impudent a knave as ever wrote a book!!"(9)
On this basis, we can then suggest that the author of the Temple Scroll embraced the opinion that the law of centralization of worship applied only in the land of Israel in line with Deuteronomy 12:1's opening declaration: ‘These are the laws and rules that you must carefully observe in the land.’”(12)