Sermons and Writings Vol. 2

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Kevin Kraut



1851 – mid-1852

Teach ye diligently and my grace shall attend you, that you may be instructed more perfectly in theory, in principle, in doctrine, in the law of the gospel, in all things that pertain unto the kingdom of God, that are expedient for you to understand. (Doc. & Cov. 88:78)


compiled and published


Ogden Kraut

Numbers in [ ] are the page numbers

April 1994


The information in this second volume of Sermons and Writings of the Restoration covers the period of time from January 1851 to August 1852, and has been taken from:

Millennial Star

Wilford Woodruff Journals

Deseret News

Manuscript histories

The great men who delivered these sermons and bore these testimonies exemplified the Spirit of God, which should be apparent to those who read their inspired words today.

Appropriate and applicable to this volume are the beautiful words taken from the “Preface” of Volume 2 of the Journal of Discourses:

It [Volume 2] is made up of the choicest fruit that can be culled from the tree of knowledge, suited to the tastes of all who can appreciate such delicious food. It contains the principles of the gospel of salvation to this generation. By the rules and precepts found in it, he that reads with the light of the Holy Spirit may measure himself and the progress he has made in the way of Eternal Life. Like a mirror it will reflect upon the souls of the meek and humble the beams of light which emanate from the presence of the Father.   * * *

Let him that would be saved watch and pray, and read with an understanding heart the words that flow from the lips of prophets and apostles, and, when he has read, practice the principles they teach.

-The Publisher


[7]                      Introduction to the New Year

Franklin D. Richards

January 1, 1851


Eighteen hundred and fifty has passed away.  With its termination closed the first half of the nineteenth century.  Our earth has performed another revolution through the immense regions of space around the sun, attended by her moon, which was appointed to reflect light upon her by night, and which has journeyed nearly thirteen times around the earth in faithful performance of those duties which were assigned her by her great Creator.  The earth has not failed to observe the laws of motion which were given for her government throughout this vast journey of several hundred millions of miles, by which day and night, summer and winter; seed time and harvest, are still given to man.  The bow also is still to be seen in the cloud. These stupendous truths most impressively declare the omnipotence, wisdom, and mercy of almighty God, inspiring the possessors and lovers of truth with awe and veneration for His holy name.

There is another truth of no less magnitude, which is fraught with infinitely greater and more momentous import to the present generations of man, viz:  He who changes the times and seasons, has, after the lapse of a cold and dark night of many hundreds of years, again brought the earth within the immediate influence of the sun of righteousness–the Son of God. His direct rays of present and immediate revelation have reached our earth. [8] For more than twenty years has this light of direct revelation been shining upon portions of our globe, illuminating the paths of those who have walked in it, with the certain knowledge of God, and their acceptance with him.  His bending rays of twilight are already perceptible over large portions of the earth’s surface.  Thousands and scores of thousands are awakened and are awakening from their dreamy slumbers, to engage in works of righteousness.

Hail, Millennial morn!  Hail, early dawn of that glorious sabbath of rest, in which the Son of God will, by His glorious presence and power, dispel darkness from the earth, and light up all nations with His glory.  Then will a nation of kings and priests administer the government of Jesus Christ over all the face of the earth.  Then will His ancient covenant people, who have been scattered abroad to the uttermost parts of the earth, together with those of them who have been driven out unto the uttermost parts of heaven, be again gathered in one, and established in the lands which were promised to them and their fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Then will the righteous have been gathered out of all the nations of the earth to Zion, while those who have refused the heavenly message of present revelation–the gift of the Holy Ghost–and opposed the upbuilding of the Redeemer’s Kingdom, will have been swept away with all their refuge of lies by the consumption which it is decreed, shall come upon the whole earth.  Then will the venom of the reptile, the ferocity of the brute, and the warlike disposition of man cease; for the spirit poured out upon all flesh will render each harmless to the other, while all the generations of man will serve the Lord with one consent, having a pure language restored to them.  Nor will the earth, by divine favour, fail to receive her portion of the promised good.

Various changes in the conformation of its surface will take place for the benefit and comfort of its inhabitants; the sea will retire to its own place, and the dry land appear in its proper form, its general surface will be greatly modulated from its present contrasting variety, its bowels will yield her richest minerals in ample profusion, while its surface will produce its immense variety of fruits with the greatest luxuriance; until in its [9] strength it causes new wine to drop down the hills, and the ploughmen to overtake the reaper, that the meek who will then inherit it may rejoice before the Lord for food and gladness, when oppression shall have ceased out of the land.

No wonder, when Abraham directed his prophetic glass, of a thousand years power, to this tolerable condition of things (although four thousand years distant in the space of time), he became enchanted with the discovery, and failed not, to obtain promises for him and his, of an inheritance therein forever.  No wonder this entrancing view, rendered then almost real by the promise that it should be theirs to enjoy, led him to command his children after him in view of it, insomuch that all their hopes of happiness seemed founded upon their title under God to an inheritance on the earth. The legitimate children of this faithful father have ever since gloried and worshipped in that hope, knowing that it could only be realized through the redemption of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Their poets have mused and written upon it, with the most exalted strains of sentiment and lively emotion of the human soul. Their psalmists and sweet singers have tuned their voices and their instruments in the most stirring notes of high sounding praise to Him who gave this promise to their fathers. Their prophets have ever and anon described the various phenomena and appearances peculiar to this great restoration of man and earth, and left them on record for the comfort and faith of others who should entertain the same hope. Their most powerful orators have made it the theme of animating discourse, awakening the most lively imagery of the mind, and producing by the aid of the Holy Spirit, the most certain conviction of its truth, while Paul could make it the very predicate upon which to found a special plea before Agrippa in defense of his life.  Hear him, “And now I stand and am judged for the hope of the promise made of God unto our fathers,” “for which hope sake, King Agrippa, I am accused of the Jews.”  Seeing then, that ancient saints entertained such lively and certain hope of that day of rest which remains for the people of God. Why shall not modern saints mind the same things with the same joy.  O ye Latter-day Saints, for a small moment forget your [10] poverty, your oppression, your persecution, and all sorrow; lift up your hearts and rejoice before the Lord with song, prayer, and thanksgiving, that you are permitted to live and behold the dispensation of the fulness of times established upon the earth.  What generation of man so blessed, as that which is first favoured with emancipation from darkness by this earliest light?

Joy to the children of promise: The dawning of that day has come,

And Saints by thousands gather home.

The last quarter of a century will be forever memorable in the annals of eternal history as the period of time in which the Prophet Joseph, by the special and direct commandment of Jesus Christ, organized His Church again among men, with all the gifts, powers, ministrations, and blessings which were anciently promised to believers by our Saviour after His resurrection; also for the discovery and translation of that wonderful record, the Book of Mormon, which contains a faithful account of the fulness of the Gospel, as well as the Doctrine and Covenants, containing the revelations which He has given for our instruction and edification, besides many mighty works which He wrought, unsurpassed persecutions which He suffered, and, finally, closing His mortal career by yielding His life’s blood in attestation of the heavenly truths which He lived to propagate and exemplify.

Year after year adds interest and power to this majestic enterprise, and it must move on impelled by the arm of Jehovah and in the teeth of all opposition, until it shall have been preached in every nation, language, and to every people.  The closing year will be most gratefully remembered to a thousand generations, as the epoch of time in which the gospel was established in France, Italy, and Denmark.  Churches are now organized in each of these countries.  The Book of Mormon is translated and nearly ready for the press in the French and Danish languages.  It is also, together with the Doctrine and Covenants, ready for press in the Welsh language.  May the time speedily come when these works shall be read in every language under heaven.

[11]        A most remarkable feature of our great work is the strange cooperation of men and events to promote it, although unknown to each other, and dwelling on opposite portions of the globe.  At about the earliest moment that society in France would admit the introduction and permanent establishment of a church of present revelation, one of the Twelve, with other Elders, arrived among them, and success attends their labours. Just at the particular juncture when his “Holiness” excommunicated Piedmont, in Italy, from papal fellowship, a mission from Zion arrived and planted the mustard seed, which though it is a small seed, will spread forth its branches till the angels of heaven shall dwell in them; although it now is a small branch, it will become as a strong nation, and the name of the Lord be more abundantly glorified in it.  Scarcely had the turbulence of internal commotion been fairly allayed in Denmark, and a new constitution adopted, admitting religious toleration, than Erastus Snow of the Twelve, with three other faithful men of God, began to proclaim the new revelation of the gospel in that nation.  Thus we are led to observe the hand of God in preparing the nations for His word, and teaching His servants in Zion by the Holy Spirit when to send to them the ministers of life.  Such is the work of God–by the power of His Spirit working upon the nations, preparing them for the preaching of the gospel in their midst, first; then for the results of receiving or rejecting it.  No longer is the hand of God “invisible or dimly seen” in its workings among the children of men by those who walk in the light of present revelation.

For ten years past, the Millennial Star has shone upon the British Islands as the harbinger of a better day.  By the unceasing diligence of its late editor and the united exertions of the Saints generally, its circulation has been vastly extended, and we hope it may still extend its rays into many a habitation where it is now unknown.

The opening of new fields of labour in different nations on the Continent, the rapid spread of the work throughout the British Empire, the immense gathering and upbuilding of the Saints in the valleys of the mountains; the increasing power of God which attends the ministration of the gospel everywhere, each increase the [12] interest and variety of our correspondence, and all augur well for the future interest and merit of our little journal.

The boldness and originality of the course which the ministers of this last dispensation are called to pursue in their unprecedented work of the gathering, and that too, in the most public capacities, and often, as in the present instance, in the absence of scholastic acquirements, produces extreme deference in entering upon such duties as editing The Star.

By diligent application, but more especially by the aid of “that wisdom which is profitable to direct,” it is hoped our little luminary may still faithfully reflect the doctrines of eternal life, to comfort the afflicted, to bear up the oppressed, to strengthen the weak, and direct the benighted traveller westward to a land of promise and a day of rest.

Should any imperfections appear upon its face, it may perhaps be charitably remembered, that dark spots are often seen upon the disc of the sun, and should its general brightness prove less than when conducted by its late editor, our sagacious readers will readily know how to maintain the quantity of light by ordering an increased number of them.

In conclusion, we wish our readers a Happy New Year, and may those who walk in the light of the Millennial Star, enjoy a thousand happier ones during a reign of righteousness on earth, and in the meantime secure an inheritance for their generations which shall never pass away. (Mill. Star 13:1-3)


The Secret of the Healing Power

  1. H. Flanigan

January 1 & 15, 1851


The editor of the Family Herald, in No. 377, vol. 8, writes an extraordinary article in favor of the healing power–a far superior healing power than that possessed by medical men.  He is of opinion that this healing power has never entirely left the world, but only the power to communicate it.  He cites several remarkable instances that have occurred during the past century, of persons being healed by this power through faith in God.  But these [13] have been rare and isolated cases quite disconnected with any divine or doctrinal mission, and therefore prove nothing more than the existence of such a power.  As light proves the existence of the sun, so instances of the spiritual healing power, independent of man, working amongst mankind, proves its existence without any reference to man having power to communicate or administer the healing power to others is the grand and important secret; to reflect light on which is the object of this article.

The Herald remarks, “a man possessed of this power in such a manner that he could communicate it to others, or withhold it from them at pleasure, would be the greatest man in the world.  He would be the conqueror of the world–all men would obey him,” etc.

The editor is in this mistaken, though in the main he speaks well.  Christ and his Apostles possessed the healing power, so that they could communicate it to others, or withhold it from them. Their power to communicate it was perfect.  The Priesthood of the Son of God was that channel of communication.  It was the complete authority through the Holy Spirit and faith in God.  Jesus received this power from His Father, the very Eternal God.  Jesus conferred this upon His disciples.  “As my father has sent me into the world, so send I you.”  Said the chief Apostle, “Ye are a royal and holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.”  Paul says, “And no man taketh this honour unto himself but he that is called of God, as was Aaron” (John, xvii.18; 1st Peter ii 5,9; Hebrew, v.4).  Yet these did not conquer the world–the reverse was absolutely true–the world conquered them.  All men did not obey them, far from it.  “He did not many mighty works in his own country because of unbelief.”  His own would not receive him, but those who did receive him, “to them gave he power to become the Sons of God.”

The Herald further remarks, “We have a class of men amongst us who profess the healing art, but their power is infinitely small.”  This is true, because they have rejected the means and administration which God has prescribed, therefore God has rejected their poisonous drug systems.

[14]        The Herald contends that the absence of power and great deficiency in the healing art lies in its gross materiality.  The gross, poisonous, material drugs, called “scientific preparation” of the medical schools now so universally used, are truly one cause of the deficiency in the healing art; but this is by no means the only cause of its absence and deficiency.  God does not pronounce “a wo” upon all material agents, but such as abuse those agents and treat with contempt his administration.  Water was one of the agents in healing Naaman, the leper.  Water was also one of the healing agents in our Saviour’s time upon earth, as may be seen by reference to the people dipping and immersing in various pools and waters for their health.

Oil is also a healing agent prescribed by Heaven; but the healing spirit and virtue in all these instances was communicated through the authority of the administration.

The healing power is of God, through his administration of all wholesome and good means which he has ordained for the use of man.  The foul leper, Naaman, had to dip seven times before the healing virtue was communicated to him.  In the restoration, Isaiah, Ezekiel, and John the Revelation, agree that pure vegetable nutriment will be the food of man, and the leaves of the trees of life shall be for medicine and the healing of the nations (Ezekiel, xlvii.12; Isaiah, lxv.17-25; Revelations, xxii. 2,3; also Doctrine and Covenants, page 240, of second edition).

The genuine healing power is a sacred power, and therefore the profession of the physician should be a sacred profession, and can only become truly successful by clothing itself with that poetic purity and scriptural elevation of character which is inseparably connected with a divine faith and administration.

The Herald further states, “that one who cannot transfer this healing power to others has no doctrinal mission whatsoever,” but in closing his article asserts “the healing power is not confined to any one doctrine.”  His first statement must be admitted, his second must not.  The first statement gives us to conclude that if the healing power can be transmitted or communicated by an [15] individual, that individual must have a doctrinal mission, and consequently, that doctrinal mission must be a genuine one.  But the latter assertion denies the healing power being “confined to any one doctrine.” Does the editor mean to contradict himself, or does he wish us to believe that the healing power can be connected with any or every doctrine?  Evidently he does not mean that it can belong to any doctrine, for he denies that it belongs to the gross material doctrine, and adds, “we conclude, therefore, that the healing power in its fulness of efficacy is intimately connected with a spiritual faith, either in the active administrator or the passive recipient of its influence.”  Why the editor should want to overturn conclusions so just and right as these, by asserting that the healing power “is confined to no doctrine,”  I am at a loss to determine, unless he fears his patrons should call him a Latter-day Saint.

That the healing power is inseparably connected with and vested in the gospel mission of faith and priesthood, we fully believe and affirm.  To deny this is to deny Holy Writ, and to persist in such a course would sap the foundation of man’s salvation.  The individual or society devoid of this only one, true, and eternal doctrinal faith and priesthood, but acts aloof and independent of it, cannot have the authority to administer and communicate the superior healing power of God.

The Herald remarks that the healing power itself has not left the world, but the power to communicate has.  This is true, and, consequently, the genuine gospel faith and priesthood has been absent from the world twelve or fourteen hundred years.  This is precisely the position the Latter-day Saints have maintained since the year 1830, the period when the angel brought back to earth the everlasting gospel, with power to communicate it to every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, previous to the end.

But let me prove that the healing power is inseparably connected with, and vested in the everlasting gospel mission; that the religious world have apostatized from that gospel power, and that it is and will be restored to the righteous.

We are glad to see an editor come nobly forward to advocate so vitally important a subject to the human [16] family as the healing power, to aid in lifting up the standard of truth and salvation to nations.  The editor may be fully sensible of his object, but it would seem that he, like Columbus of the fifteenth century, is not conscious of the silent power that moves him thus to vindicate such an unpopular doctrine; or what is full as good, he must have investigated the doctrine of the Saints, and in sentiment must be one.  If the former, it may be a source of satisfaction to know he is right; if the latter he advocates a cause of vital truth, a subject worthy an editor’s celebrity.

None could speak out and foretell the existence of the American continent until Columbus made the important discovery; then all could prophecy of its existence and future greatness; so with the healing power of the nineteenth century.

None could speak out boldly, “thus saith the Lord”, the superior spiritual healing power exists and can be administered until the great secret of its restoration and communication was revealed from heaven by an angel to the seer and prophet of the latter-day dispensation, Joseph, and the Latter-day Saints. Then, forthwith, editors, priests, and mesmerists, could all set to prophesying of its existence and operations, accounting for it in a thousand different ways, some by natural means, others by unnatural; some by natural agencies, others by unnatural; some by imagination, others by witchcraft; some by divining, others by mesmerism; some by a nod of the priest, others by ecstatic joy and excitement; others by the power of God, and others again by the power of Beelzebub; none agreed because none rightly understood the grand main spring of its action but the children of the kingdom, to whom the high prerogative is given by the spirit of revelation to understand the deep things of God.

Evidently the editor’s vision is obscured and himself in the dark, and the force of his arguments thwarted touching the secret of the healing power’s action, its power and mode of communication also, in denying that it is connected with “any one doctrine”.

It is no marvelous thing to find at times an uninspired Herald or parson in error. To confess and [17] forsake the errors of yesterday, is but to acknowledge we are wiser today than we were yesterday.  Is it not highly creditable for the Herald to receive light from a star?  If ye will receive this restoration, this is Elijah that must come to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the children to the fathers, before the great and notable day of the Lord come!

The “healing power” is God’s antidote for the ills of mortality, “unto you that fear my name, shall the son of righteousness arise with healing in his wings, and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves of the stall.”  That it does exist and operate at times independent of human agency we admit; but instead of it acting as a gift or law upon man, independent of doctrinal truth and divine administration, the reverse is positively true.

What is the origin of man’s disease and mortality?  How came they into our world?  The Bible answers these questions, “death came by sin”; sin is the transgression of a doctrinal law.  The powers of life and death were vested in the law of God, it is a savor of life, unto life if obeyed; but of death, unto death if disobeyed and violated.  If Adam voluntarily and knowingly upon the river of life violated the laws of God, and launched his vessel and crew into the awful vortex of disease and death, the second Adam (Christ) has powerfully arrested and changed the course of the vessel, to the only right point of compass.  By the proper use of the same means and laws that were violated and abused, can Adam and his posterity again be landed in the haven of life?  As unbelief and disobedience to God’s law produced disease and death, so true faith and obedience to the same law will produce health and life.  As man, acting under the virtue of a doctrinal mission, violated the laws of life, and produced disease and death, in like manner must man be vested with a divine doctrinal faith and priesthood to communicate life and health.  If these sacred means and authority are abused and treated with contempt, the soul that does it, though he had power to awe a nation into silent submission, or, by a mesmeric charm, to remove mountains, shall die in this life, and in the life to come, a second death.

The keys of the healing power are vested in that only one gospel administration, which is the power of God unto [18] salvation.  Though we, or mesmerists, or popes, or archbishops, “or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel (administration) unto you, let him be accursed.”

Hear the Saviour of the world upon the healing power. “Preach the gospel to every creature.  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not (consequently will not obey) shall be damned.  And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:15-18)

The Apostle Paul declares that God hath placed numerous gifts in the Church, and “to one is given by the spirit the gift of healing.”

The Apostle James declares the order of God displayed in the healing art, “Is any sick among you, let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil, in the name of the Lord, and the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up, and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.”

Here is a doctrinal administration, and the only true one that can save mankind, with the healing power vested in it.  It is the power of God unto the salvation of all who obey it. But if man does not believe rightly in God’s commandments, if he repents not sincerely of all his sins, and if he does not “be baptized for the remission of his sins,” under God’s own administration, he will be damned, and die of sore disease.  He will be resurrected with the transgressor, judged and condemned to die a second death.  The healing power is the gift of God following the believer in his administration.  Where God’s administration of the gospel is not in its primitive order and perfection, there is no authority to communicate the healing power, nor the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  The absence of these gifts, and operations of the Holy Ghost, and the healing power emphatically prove the absence of faith in God, and power to administer the ordinances of the gospel.

Have any of the sectarian administrators since the apostasy of the church and the reformation, contended for and taught the whole primitive Gospel, including all its [19] ordinances, gifts, officers, its organization, and healing power?  I am bold to answer no; not one of them.  Have any of them had revelation and special command from God to reform and reorganize the church?  No, not one of them have professed the like until the angel came in the nineteenth century to restore the priesthood and true Church organization. Joseph Smith and the Latter-day Saints have truly received from God that divine authority and revelation to set in order the church, and restore the everlasting Gospel of Jesus Christ, with all its accompanying gifts and powers (see Rev. xiv. 6,7).  Have mesmerists or any other party of diviners or doctors in latter times taught the only true gospel message and administration of Christ, as being the authority and grand secret of their feats in the visionary and healing arts?  Absolutely not one of them.

This rule detects all counterfeits.  It shows us who the true church and the true believers are: “whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God.”  “If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him GodÕs speed, for he that biddeth him God’s speed is partaker of his evil deeds” (2 John 9,10,11).  “Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the world.”  “We are of God, he that knoweth God knoweth us, he that is not of God knoweth not us.  Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error” (1 John iv. 1 and 6).  All who come not with the true Gospel message, priesthood, spirit, and healing power are apostates, and counterfeiters.  As counterfeits prove the existence of the true coin, so the signs of the nineteenth century, the soothsayers, astrologers, mesmerists, and self-styled physicians, prove the existence and restoration of the healing power of the gospel, and revelations of God.

Query:  Do you mean to say the whole religious world have, in their church administrations, apostatized?  And also that they have lost the light of immediate revelation from God, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and the healing power?  The apostles and prophets answer these questions in the affirmative.  Let St. Paul speak:  Mark his words, “The time will come when they will not endure sound [20] doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.”  “Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God, having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away” (2 Tim iv. 3,4, and iii. 4,5).  Hear Micah, “the heads thereof judge for reward, and the priests thereof divine for money; yet will they lean upon the Lord and say, is not the Lord among us? none evil can come upon us” (Micah iii. 2).  Isaiah declares that “darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people.”  The earth also is defiled under the inhabitants thereof; because they have transgressed the laws, changed the ordinances, and broken the everlasting covenant,” for which cause, continues the prophet, “hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate; therefore the inhabitants of the earth are (to be) burned, and few men left.”  What could be plainer?  Who could portray the Christian world’s apostasy better than Paul, Micah, and Isaiah have done?  Are they true prophets?  Yes, verily they are beyond the possibility of dispute.  Then it is proved by the Bible that the whole professed Christian organizations, from sea to sea, and from Popery through the infant-damning, soul-destroying (all but a few elect), Calvinistic system, through the awfully-devouring, baby-sprinkling, English Church system, down to raving, distracted Methodism, have all apostatized, and left the true order of Heaven.  Wherefore, the “Healing Power”, and the gifts of the Gospel, have all left them.  John Wesley declared, that the extraordinary gifts of the Spirit which existed in the primitive Christian Church have ceased–not, as many have ignorantly supposed, because they were not needed, but because the faith of the Christians has waxed cold, and they have become heathens, and have nothing but a dead form left.  This is affirming what the Scriptures have foretold.  Let God be true, and every one who contradicts his words be liars.

Jesus declared the Kingdom of Heaven (of course that branch of it which was upon the earth) suffered violence, and the violent took it by force (Matt. xi. 12).  John said, the false powers of the earth should make war with the [21] Saints, and overcome them (Rev. xiii. 7).  Daniel declared the same false powers made war with the Saints, and prevailed against them (only on earth, in this world).  “And he shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the Saints of the Most High, and think to change times and laws; and they shall be given into his hand until a time, and times, and dividing of a time”. (equal to twelve hundred and sixty years)  (Dan. vii. 21, 25).

The Revelator saw the priesthood caught up to God and His Throne.  He saw the Church fly off into the wilderness from the face of men (Rev. xii) triumphant above the gates of Hell, to remain in the place prepared for her twelve hundred and sixty prophetic days, equal to twelve hundred and sixty years, which, from the final apostasy, would bring us down the stream of time into the nineteenth century.

If we date from A.D. five hundred and seventy, which is believed and admitted to be about the period of the final apostasy from the primitive Church pattern and power, twelve hundred and sixty years brings us to the year of our Lord eighteen hundred and thirty, the exact period when the true Church organization again appeared from the wilderness of apostasy, decked in her original beauty.

The angel restored the priesthood from heaven to the Saints, through the instrumentality of the Prophet Joseph. In the words of Daniel, in the latter-days, the days of these (now existing) kingdoms, “shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed:  and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever” (Rev. xiv. 6-7; Dan. ii. 44).  With this restoration of the gospel, kingdom, and priesthood is restored, the “Healing Power”, and all the gifts of the primitive Gospel; and with tens of thousands of others, we are this day witnesses of these things.

Popery may claim apostolic succession and blush; she may awe the ignorant into humble submission by her priestly rule.  In vain may she attempt to satisfy the world by presenting one Pope instead of twelve apostles.  Prophets, seers, and apostles were the eyes and pillars of the church; instead of one Pope, bishops and cardinals.

[22]        I deny the office and duty of a bishop being the same as apostles and prophets; they are quite different.  While the office of apostles and prophets guides the spiritual salvation of the church, the office of a bishop comes under them, and guides the temporal salvation of the church, as may be seen by reference to the scriptures and revelations of God.

When and where did Christ call his apostles popes, and order such an unheard of change, as for one pope to take the place of twelve apostles?  In vain may Popery insist upon herself remaining on the rock of revelation (not Peter) impregnable against the gates of hell.

The gates of hell could not and shall not prevail against the church triumphant, or in the eternal world; but in this world, the Bible would be false, and the apostles and prophets liars, if hell had not opened wide her gates and belched forth fire, and the sword, imprisonment, exilement, stripes, the rack and torture of the horrid inquisition, martyrdom, death, and foul apostasy, and drove the church into the wilderness.

O Popery, blush when you stand up to claim primitive purity and power!  After assuming a name and power above all that is called God, shewing forth that you are God in dictating the destinies of mortals: After breaking the covenant in instituting one Pope, or bishop, instead of twelve apostles:  After transgressing the law of God, in teaching doctrines of devils, viz: –forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, confessions to the priests; the worship of God through images, and the inflicting of penance and torture, resulting not infrequently in death:  considering your swelling title above all that is worshipped, setting the bad example to your whole train of apostate daughters in changing the ordinance, the object, and the mode of baptism, and the candidates thereof.  When you gave an inch, your daughters took an ell;  when you commenced a change, they completed it; instead of baptizing for remission of sins, you have changed to baptizing infants who have no sins.  Instead of immersing the whole body, constituting the earthly part of the new birth, you sprinkle, and your daughters also sprinkle, pour, immerse, some few dipping three times face foremost. [23] Instead of baptizing adult sinners, who can believe and repent, you administer mock baptism to infants, who are not capable of either, “for of such is the kingdom of heaven”.  Instead of having Christ’s one true baptism, you and your daughters have three or four kinds, whatever may best please.  After all this, will you claim a pure unadulterated succession from the Apostles of Christ?  Impossible.  If the fountain were pure would not the waters be pure also?  The streams from the mother and the waters from the daughters are all impure, and so must be the fountain.

Who cannot see that a general apostasy was inevitably to come upon the earth?  But here comes the great question to which we must give a passing answer.  Admitting this apostasy to exist, which we must do or deny our Bible and our senses–what has become of all the good people who have died during this long night of apostasy?  If they worshipped God according to the best of their knowledge, they are happy and will receive a reward according to their works and words.  The Gospel in its fulness was not preached unto them, therefore they will not be condemned for rejecting it.  In our Father’s house are many mansions. They will have one according to their righteousness.  Thus God and his words are true and just.  But now the true light has come from heaven; if men reject it, they will seal their condemnation, for God will not be mocked.  The enormous amount of error in the world may not exist because of wilful lying, but because of people’s carelessness about the truth.  Oh, people, awake to righteousness; seek after and obey the commandments of God.

We have clearly proved that the healing power is one of the gifts and virtues of the gospel. The authority to administer, and communicate it, is vested in the High Priesthood, through the Spirit and faith in God.  These are essential qualifications on the part of the administrator.  Genuine true faith in God and his Holy Spirit is essential also in the subject, “as your faith is, so be it done unto you,” said Jesus.

We have shown that the healing power accompanied the Gospel administration to all believers 1800 years ago.  We have pointed out the cause of its absence from the [24] world, viz., the general apostasy.  We have referred to numerous indisputable testimonies of its being again restored to the righteous; and here I could insert thousands of well attested living testimonies and witnesses to the power of God, in healing being restored to the Church of Christ of Latter-day Saints, but narrow space and want of time now forbid. They can be daily seen, and are testified of, in the Millennial Star in all our publications, and in the meetings of the Saints throughout the world.

My voice and pen I here use to bear testimony to the world, that the gospel, with its pure living administration, gifts and healing power, is restored to this church.  Stranger, do you wish to prove it, too?  Repent, be baptized for the remission of your sins by God’s administration; receive the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost; be faithful before God, and you shall have abundant evidence of what we have told you.  If any man will do the will of heaven, he shall know of the doctrine whether it be of God or man.  Query:  But why do you not come to the world working miracles, if the healing power is with you?  Because God has sent us to preach and restore the gospel, and these signs and gifts shall follow them that believe and obey.  Ought not miracles to be the forerunners of the restoration of the gospel?  No.  They follow.  Faith comes by hearing the word of God. Faith produces miracles.  “Without faith it is impossible to please God.”

Faith, repentance, baptism for the remission of sins, and the reception of the Holy Spirit, are the forerunners of the power of God manifest in the gospel.

Two of the most important missions and dispensations, that God ever sent to the earth, viz.:  Noah’s flood and John’s proclamation of Christ and His kingdom, came quite independent of any miracles whatever.  Moses was sent expressly to work miracles.  Noah was sent to preach righteousness, to build an ark, and tell the world of a flood that was to destroy every living creature who went not into the ark. John the Baptist, the greatest prophet was sent to proclaim the kingdom and coming of Christ, and baptize unto repentance for remission of sins. Joseph and the Saints are sent to restore the Gospel to the world, to gather the righteous, to build up Zion, that the Lord may appear in His glory.

[25]        Those who seek and run after signs instead of the “Gospel of the Kingdom,” are of a wicked and adulterous generation, and will be deceived and overthrown if they do not speedily repent.  All who profess to show signs and do miracles, independent of the gospel and priesthood of Christ, are impostors; by this rule they are known, said John, “I saw three unclean spirits,” &c.; they are the spirits of devils, working miracles which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of the great day of God Almighty! John adds, and he (the beast or false powers which should arise) doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, and deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which he had power to do.

Jesus said the false prophets and christs of the last days, “shall show great signs and wonders, insomuch, that, if it were possible, they would deceive the very elect;” but it is not possible, Paul declares, “because they receive not the love of the truth that they might be saved.”  God shall “send them strong delusion that they should believe a lie, that they all might be damned, who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness” (Rev. xvi. 13,14; Ibid. xiii.13,14; 2 Thess. ii.11,12).

Now, if the world will only receive and believe a spirit, or a prophet, on the strength of their miracles, they will assuredly be deceived, and gathered to the great slaughter of the wicked.  As the power of God increases among the Saints, so the devil’s kingdom will be in commotion to imitate, deceive, and oppose it. We are warned against false prophets, and told that true prophets must come.  God doeth nothing but he revealeth his secrets to his servants the prophets (Amos iii.7, Malachi iv.5); in fact the Kingdom of God never did, nor never will, exist without true prophets and direct inspiration from God to man.  As the world will have both false and true prophets, and both will have power to do miracles, how shall they be known apart? “By their fruits ye shall know them.”  The true prophets and servants of God bring Christ’s perfect gospel administration of faith, spirit, and priesthood; while the false prophets and teachers invariably [26] bring neither; but come in their own name, independent of the principles of life and salvation.

They perform by their own wisdom and deep scheming arts.  The true servants of Christ prove their mission and doctrine by the revelations of God and the powers of the Holy Ghost.

False teachers and impostors have no better proofs than lying public rumour and newspaper tales of romance, &c.  The Saints follow the law and Spirit of God strictly, and gifts, blessings, miracles, and the “healing power” follow them.  The false world follow not the true order of God, but disbelieve and reject it; they drink in a false spirit, wander after and demand signs from mesmerism and a thousand other isms not of God.

The devil and false spirits may transform themselves into angels of light to deceive, but they never leave their diabolical works to preach and administer the true gospel administration of Christ unto life and salvation.

Ye Saints of the Latter-days, go on–you are the children of the light; continue to walk in it.  Suffer also this word of advice.  Obey every counsel and word of God, whether spoken by Himself, the holy angels, or His authorized ministers whom He has called to labor among you, that you may be found faithful and wise, in time to escape the fiery storm of righteous indignation about to be poured out upon an ungodly generation, which is without God and without Christ in the world.  May you overcome and inherit all things in the Celestial Kingdom of our God, where the “Healing Power” shall preserve you from all tears, sorrow, pain, and death. (Mill Star 13:12-14; 29-32; 37-39)


Remarks to the Legislature

Brigham Young-February 4, 1851

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)


According to adjournment, the Legislature met today to transact business for the State.  I spent the day with them.  An ordinance was passed granting a liberal charter to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, protecting them in their religious rights.

[27]        During the passage of this ordinance many interesting remarks were made by the President or Governor of the State.  He says we do not want the Church to pass laws to punish crime, only to try members of Church fellowship.  If the member shall transgress the laws of the land, turn them over to the laws of the land, but we want to protect the Church in their right of worship and so we will [do to] every other sect that comes here.  When the kingdoms of this world become the kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, will they all be members of the Church of Jesus Christ and obey the Gospel?  No, not only 8th part of them.  No more than the Telestial Kingdom is a Celestial one, and they stand in about the same relationship one to the other.

If a society of the Shaking Quakers were to come here and settle in this valley and wanted a charter to be protected in their worship, let us give them one.  And if they believe it right not to marry a woman, let them live without it and not compel them to it.  So if the Latter-day Saints wish to have more wives than one to live holy and raise up holy seed unto the Lord, let them enjoy that privilege.

Now the gentile Christian nations and legislatures guard very strictly against passing any laws to do away with whoredoms, but they will make it almost death for a man to have two wives, but they will have as many whores as they please.  Yes, thousands upon thousands of the Christian nations are rotting with the pock and filthy corruption and they think this is all right, but for a righteous man to have several wives like Abraham and Isaac and Gad and David and others, to raise up a holy seed unto the Lord, and will keep themselves pure before God, they think this is an awful sin.  But if I had power I would take all good virtuous females from all wicked corrupt adulterous husbands and give them to holy men of God, that they may raise up seed unto the Lord.

I have more wives than one.  I have many and I am not ashamed to have it known.  Some deny in the States that we have more wives than one.  I never deny it.  I am perfectly willing that the people at Washington should know that I have more than one wife, and they are pure before the Lord and are approved of in this sight.  I have [28] been commanded of God to pursue this course, &c. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Address by Parley P. Pratt

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff

March 2, 1851


The assembly was addressed by P.P. Pratt as a farewell address on his taking his leave on a foreign mission.  Among his remarks he said he had been connected with this Church about twenty-one years.  He had laboured, traveled, joyed, sorrowed, felt, and experienced with them during that time. He has seen men rise and fall, and one thing he wished to speak of, he had seen many of the sisters at various times feel disposed to marry out of the church and think there is no harm in it.  They can marry a gentile and no harm in it.  But what is the truth in the case?  It is the same now as anciently.  For instance, in the days of Noah, the daughters of Noah married out of the church in some instances and were not saved with him in the ark, but they and their seed were cut off from the earth forever.

So with Lot.  Some of his daughters married gentiles out of the church while in Sodom and Gomorrah and would not go out with their father Lot but were destroyed–they and their posterity–from off the earth.  So it is with the sisters in the Church in this day. Those who marry out of the Church marry those who are doomed to destruction and their posterity, while those who are in the Church and are faithful will live and their children to the last generation.

Brother Pratt exhorted the Saints to unite in building up the Kingdom of God.  He felt that there was a good spirit generally prevailing in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He was going on a long mission.  He wanted the prayers of the saints in his behalf and those who were going with him that they might save the souls of men and open the Gospel to those of other tongues and languages.  I think the time has come when it should be done.  I feel that I can do nothing of myself in this matter except the Lord helps me.  I feel thankful that I can leave my family and children here in the midst of the [29] Saints.  I do not wish to go to the States to preach the Gospel to the nation that has driven us out.  If they want the gospel, let them come and ask for it, as we have traveled with blistered feet to carry it to them and then they would curse us for it.  Many other good remarks were made by Elder Pratt. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Extracts from a Work by John Taylor

March 15, 1851


Man’s body to him, then, is of great importance; and if he only knew and appreciated his privileges, he might live above the temptation of Satan, the influence of corruption, subdue his lusts, overcome the world, and triumph and enjoy the blessings of God in time and in eternity.

The object of man’s taking a body is that through the redemption of Jesus Christ both soul and body may be exalted in the eternal world, when the earth shall be celestial and obtain a higher exaltation than he could be capable of doing without a body.  For when man was first made, he was made “a little lower than the angels.”  But through the atonement and resurrection of Jesus Christ, he is placed in a position to obtain an exaltation higher than angels.  For, says the Apostle, “know ye not that we shall judge angels.”  Jesus descended below all things that He might be raised above all things.  He took upon Him a body that He might die as a man, and “that through death He might destroy him that has power of death, even the devil.” (Heb. ii. 14.)  Having conquered death, then in His own dominion, burst the barriers of the tomb, and ascended with this body triumphant to the right hand of God; He has accomplished a purpose which God had decreed from before the foundation of the world, and “opened the kingdom of Heaven unto all believers.”  Hence, man, through his obedience to the gospel, is placed in a position to be an adopted son of God, and have a legitimate right to his Father’s blessings, and to possess the gift of the Holy Ghost.

And the Apostle says, “If the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, He that raised [30] up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by His Spirit that dwelleth in you.”  (Rom. viii. 2)

Thus as Jesus vanquished death, so may we; as He overcame, so may we; and if faithful, “sit with Him upon His throne, as He has overcome and sat down upon the throne of His Father.”  (Rev. iii 21)  And so man will not only be raised from degradation, but also be exalted to a seat among the intelligences that surround the throne of God.  And this is one great object of our coming here and taking bodies.

Another object that we came here for and took bodies, was to propagate our species.  For if it is for our benefit to come here, it is also for the benefit of others.

Hence, the first commandment given to man was to “Be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth.”  (Gen. i. 28.)  And as man is an eternal being and all his actions have a relevancy to eternity, it is necessary that he understand his position well, and thus fulfill the measure of his creation; for as he and his offspring are destined to live eternally, he is not only responsible for his own acts, but, in a great measure, for those of his children–in training their minds, regulating their morals, setting them a correct example, and teaching them correct principles, but more especially in preserving the purity of his own body.  And why?  Because if he abuses his body and corrupts himself, he not only injures himself but his partner or associates, and entails misery incalculable upon his posterity who are doomed to inherit the father’s misery–and this not only in time, but in eternity.  Hence, the Lord has given laws regulating marriage and chastity, of the strictest kind, and entailed the severest punishment upon those who in different ages have abused this sacred ordinance. For example, the curse of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the terrible judgments pronounced against those who should corrupt and defile their bodies.  Let any one read Deut. xii. 13 to 30.  Again, “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the spirit of God dwelleth in you?  If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy.”  (1 Cor. iii. 16, 17.)  And why?  Because man being made a free agent over his own body, that he might exalt himself and his posterity, both in time and eternity, [31] if he abuses that power, he not only affects himself, but unborn bodies and spirits–corrupting the world and opening the flood-gates of vice, immorality, and estrangement from God.

Hence, the children of Israel were told not to inter-marry with the surrounding nations, lest their seed should become corrupt and the people turn to idolatry, which would lead to the forgetfulness of God, to an ignorance of His purposes and designs.  He would lose sight of the object of his creation and corrupt himself, and this would lead to the introduction of every other evil as a natural consequence.  But when the order of God is carried out, it places things in a lovely position.  What is more amiable and pleasant than those pure, innocent, endearing affections which God has placed in the hearts of the male and female, who are united in lawful matrimony, with a love and affection, pure as the love of God, because it springs from Him and is His gift; with bodies chaste and virtuous, and an offspring, lovely, healthy, pure, innocent, and uncontaminated.  Confiding in each other, they live together in the fear of God, enjoying nature’s gifts uncorrupted and undefiled as the driven snow or the crystal stream.

But how would this enjoyment be enhanced if they understood their destiny, could unravel the designs of God, and contemplate an eternal union in another state of existence–a connection with this offspring, commenced here, to endure forever, and all their ties, relationships, and affections strengthened?  A mother feels great delight in beholding her child and gazing on its lovely infant form.  How would her bosom swell with delight at the contemplation of that child being with her forever.  And if we only understood our position, this was the object for which we came into the world.  And the object of the kingdom of God, on which I have written at length, is to re-establish all these holy principles.  Chastity and purity are things of the greatest importance to the world; hence, the prophet says, “Because the Lord hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.  And did not he make one?  Yet had he the residue of the spirit.  And wherefore one?  That [32] he might seek a godly seed.  Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.”  (Mal. ii:14, 15)

Here, then, the object of purity is pointed out clearly; and what is it?  That God might preserve a godly seed.  Saint Paul says, “What? Know ye not that he which is joined to an harlot, is one body? for two, saith he, shall be one flesh. . . . Flee fornication.  Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.  What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own.”  (1 Cor. vi:16-19)  And in the next chapter, he speaks of the same things which Malachi does concerning a pure seed. “For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband; else were your children unclean; but now art they holy.” (vii:14)

The legislators of all civilized nations have seen the necessity of sustaining these things, and consequently, have generally passed very rigid laws for the protection of female virtue and the support of the marriage contract.  Hence, acts have been passed and enforced disinheriting those who were not born in wedlock.  This has produced a salutary effect.  Ministers of the various churches have also used their influence, in a great measure, in support of virtuous principles. These have had their influence in assisting to stem the torrents of iniquity.  But, as the nations themselves have forsaken God, how can they expect to stop this crying evil? For the very legislators who pass these laws, are, in many instances, guilty themselves.  And when kings, princes, and rulers, corrupt themselves, how can they expect the people to be pure?  For no matter how rigid law may be, corrupt persons will always find means to evade it.  And, indeed, so far have these abominations gone, that it seems to be an admitted fact that these things cannot be controlled; and although there are laws relating to matrimonial alliances, yet there are some nations called Christian, who actually give license for prostitution and all the degradation and misery associated with it.

Nor are these things connected with the lower ranks of life.  Wantonness and voluptuousness go hand in hand, [33] and revel unchecked in courts, among the kings and nobles of the earth; the statesman, the politician, the merchant, the mechanic, the laborer, have all corrupted themselves.  The world is full of adultery, intrigue, fornication, and abominations.  Let any one go to the masked balls in the principal theaters in Paris, and he will see thousands of people of both sexes, impudently, shamelessly, and unblushingly manifesting their lewd dispositions.  Indeed, debauch and wantonness bear fearful sway–not to speak of the dens of abominations that exist elsewhere.  London abounds with unfortunate beings, led on by example, seduction and misery, to their fallen degraded condition.

The same thing exists throughout England, France, the United States, and, in fact, all nations.  Hence, millions of youth corrupt themselves, engender the most loathsome diseases, and curse their posterity with their sin, who in their turn rise up and tread in the corrupt steps of their fathers.  Not to say anything of the thousands of lovely beings whom God designed for companions to men in time and in eternity, by whom to raise up a pure offspring; now corrupted, degraded, polluted, and fallen; poor miserable wretches, outcasts of society; insulted, oppressed, despised, and abused; led on from one degree of degradation to another, till death, as a friend, closes their miserable existence, and, yet, without hope.

Thus, man that was made pure in the image of his Maker, that could stand proudly erect as the representative of God, pure and uncontaminated, is debased, fallen, corrupt, diseased, and sunk below the brute creation–a creature of lusts and passions, and a slave to this unbridled appetite.  I spake plain on this subject, and I do it because it is a curse to the world, and God will have a reckoning with the nations for these things.

In vain, then, men legislate on these matters; the nations have corrupted themselves, and these things are beyond their control.  Men must be governed by higher and purer motives than merely human enactments.

If the world understood its true position and the eternal consequences to them and their seed, they would feel differently.  They would feel that they were eternal [34] beings, that they were responsible to God, both for their bodies and spirits, and nothing but a knowledge of man’s fall and true position, and the development of the kingdom of God, can restore man to his true position, bring again the order and economy of God, and place man in his natural position of the earth. (Mill. Star 13:81-83)


Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

May 12, 1851


A company started out this morning to examine the coal and iron.  The president and council remained in fort to hold a council and do such business as was necessary.  A meeting was called at 4 o’clock to ascertain the minds of the brethren.  It was found about 30 wished to go home, 15 to get their families and the other 15 to remain at the Great Salt Lake.  Each one made their excuse.

President Young then addressed them and said he would express his feelings upon the subject to those who wished to go home. If you were now on a mission to France, England or any other part of the earth, preaching the gospel, you would not sit down and council together about going to get your families or go home until your mission was ended.  This is of quite as much importance as preaching the gospel, for the time has now come when it is required of us to make the wilderness blossom as the rose.  Our mission now is–build up stakes of Zion and fill these mountains with cities and when your mission is ended, you are at liberty to go and be free and only do right.

When I go on a mission, I leave my affairs in the hands of God.  If my house, fields, flocks, wife or children die in my absence, I say amen to it.  If they live and prosper, I feel to say amen to it and thank the Lord.  He wished the brethren to finish the fort and secure their grain and wished the land to be surveyed so that the brethren who laid the foundation could have their choice of farms.  He counseled the brethren to buy up the Lamanite children as fast as they could and educate them and teach them the gospel so that in not many generations they would be a white and delightsome people.  For the [35] Lord could not have devised a better plan than to have put us where we are in order to accomplish this thing. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Synopsis of Discourse by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

June 1, 1851


When I arrived at meeting, President Young was speaking and the following is a synopsis of His discourse:

If a man does right, he shall have the spirit of God to enlighten his mind in all things.  Yet all men will be tried, buffeted, and tempted more or less in this probation, and he that governs himself is wise.  If a man is unrighteously angry, he should let it sleep and not show itself until he is right again.  Good men may be left to commit a gross sin, but if he had watched closely he would have escaped the evil.  The Lord intends all men to be tried in this life, and if you build your faith upon a true foundation, that faith has got to be tried.  All men have an opportunity of appearing wise or foolish, of governing themselves or making their folly manifest.

Peter committed a gross error.  Had he have been on the watch tower, he might have turned away in silence and not denied his Lord.  Many have been tried and turned away from us at a time when they expected to have gained something by it, and in doing so they have lost all.  Others have been blinded and overcome and done evil.  Then their eyes were open to see the consequences.  But it is the privilege of all men to live so that they can see what each act will amount to–either good or evil.  How different the prospect would be before the world or this people if they would live so from what it now is.  I endeavour to do right in all things and then leave the event in the hands of God and am satisfied with the result.  If a man is led or tempted to do a thing that you do not comprehend the result of and that result does not lead to good, then let it alone.

During the past week one remarked to me that my observations last Sunday ought to be observed, which was good but it ought to have been spoken in the right spirit.  But I wish to say that I am satisfied with the power and [36] influence the Lord has given me.  The Lord directs things according to His own will.  I know my feelings and zeal would make my words like a sharp two-edged sword so that they would separate the sins from this people that they should practice sin no more–not be tempted with it.  But this is not the will of God.  The people still must have their warfare and trial; and if the storms and waves overwhelm the ship, still all is well for we have a good captain at the helm.

Some people are very anxious to reprove others while they are wrong themselves and do not know the spirit they are of.  They are ready to say how do you do, Peter and Judas, and Jesus, and how do you do, Mr. Devil, and are very pious but will go to hell with their spirit and the whole world will go to hell with the same spirit.  Awake, ye Elders of Israel, and make your calling and election sure lest you go to hell with the wicked.  I do not point you to the sectarian hell where devils are toasting you with a pitchfork in the billows of hellfire eternally.  But go and mingle with the wicked in the states. Wrangle and fight with them.  Get their spirit and feelings and lose the light and spirit of God and you will begin to feel the true state of the damned.

The wicked killed Jesus Christ out of malice and wickedness, and they did not know that His death was for the good of the world.  The Lord turns many things for good that the world means for evil.  The whole earth is filled with misery, sin and wickedness.  I could find no worse hell than to be confined among them.

I labour for the welfare of this whole people.  I wish my brethren to be a happy, free people that their course of life may be such as to get an eternal and temporal salvation.  I labour to effect this.  There is time and change to all things.  There has been a code of laws given in former days which was for all people which is the gospel of Jesus Christ.

In the days of Christ, the Apostles and Elders were sent out to preach the gospel and warn the people.  They did so but were then martyred for preaching it, and the saints were killed off the earth.  That time is gone.  The change has come, for now the set time has come to favor Zion, to build it up in strength, power and glory, to gather [37] Israel, to build Jerusalem and Zion, to fight for our liberty and freedom.  We have sent the gospel forth and preached the Book of Mormon and the ministry of Jesus on this continent in ancient days.  Now the time is come to gather Israel and polish them.

There is a great excitement in the world about slavery, and the abolitionists are very fearful that we shall have the Negro or Indian as slaves here.  We have a few that were prisoners that we have bought to save their lives.  But what will the abolitionists do?  If you owe them a dollar, they will jog you up.  Neither will they liberate the slave by buying them and setting them free.  The master of slaves will be damned if they abuse their slaves.  Yet the seed of Ham will be servants until God takes the curse off from them.  But they are not all the slaves that there is in the world.  The whole world are slaves to sin and wickedness and passion.

I have two Blacks, and they are as free as I am.  Shall we lay a foundation for Negro slavery?  No!  God forbid!  And I forbid.

I say let us be free.  We will be rich, but we must be rich in faith first or we shall be rich in no other way.  We must lay a foundation to manufacture our own goods.  If we do not, we shall be slaves to our enemies.  We must stop being so much dependent upon our enemies and a foreign market or it will make us trouble.

And this people must cease getting in debt to the merchants; for if you will get in debt, you shall pay your debts.  But I say stop getting in debt.  Let no one come to me and complain that he has got in debt and the man will sue him and ought to be cut off from the church.  For you that get in debt and won’t pay your debts are the ones that ought to be cut off from the church.  Don’t get in debt.  Go in the spring and get the bark off the shrub oaks.  There is enough in this valley to tan $200,000 worth of leather, and here your hides are rotting over the earth, and you are paying 50 cts per lb. for leather, and you pay the merchants $80,000 annually for shoes.  But instead of pursuing this course, if you will lay a foundation for tanning leather, making cloth, making what we want, you then lay a foundation to build and sustain Zion.

[38]        I drove sheep to this valley and bought others and brought a carding machine here to card wool.  Who will put it up?  I have done more to stock this valley than any four men in the place.  I want others to do something.  Set up the machine and make the cloth.  Is there any woman in this valley who will make me a suit of clothes?  [If so, do I not wear them?]

What is the spirit of the times?  In the world if a woman pays a great price for an article, it is considered very nice and all want some of the same; but you get a thing cheap, and all are ashamed to wear it.  You are looked upon with disdain.  But if you pay a great price, you are very respectable.

There are many practices not right.  To see the men ride through the streets–they go as though they were in a hurry to get to hell.  To men of wisdom such things look vain and foolish, but to the world it looks glorious and the mark of fellow[shipping?] with them is fine clothing and splendor.  I want the saints to adorn themselves–first their hearts with faith and grace, then their bodies with the workmanship of their own hands.  If it is silk and satin, all the better.  It will show your art wisdom and ingenuity in temporal things.

True friendship is not known on the earth if it is not among this people.  But the friendship of this people is the fruits of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  This must continue to improve until they are perfect.

In speaking upon the subject of tithing, the president thought there had not been $200 paid in cash during the past year by this people in tithing.  But they have paid the merchants $200,000 in cash, and there are now 30,000 bushels of wheat due on tithing.  Shall we dispense with the law of tithing? Don’t you want a building to meet in to worship God?  We want a tabernacle and a temple for our endowments, also a tower to hang a bell on, and we want to keep building up Zion that Israel may have a place of rest.  If we do this, we do our duty.  We have duties to perform and a warfare to accomplish, but the victory will soon be ours.  The greatest warfare is with ourselves.  If we can gain a victory with ourselves so as to have peace with ourselves, our wives and children, we shall do well. Many [39] other interesting remarks were made by the president. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Address by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

June 8, 1851


President Young addressed a full assembly of the Saints as follows:

I want to speak such things as are in my heart.  All that are acquainted with me know that my religion embraces all things that belong to the duties of life.  The religion I have embraces all the principles of present and future, progressive and eternal salvation in every sense of the word.  I labour for the salvation of myself and my brethren.  I would be glad to speak to thousands even the whole world if they could hear.  I would not like to preach in this house to 80 or 100 persons when more than 1,000 could get in here, then have 80 or 100 more come and have to preach 20 or 50 times to have the people learn when they could learn it all at once.

The president of the Seventies called a separate meeting today.  I came and dismissed it. What if the Twelve, Seventies, High Priests, Elders, Priests, Teachers, Deacons, and members should do the same?  There would be bare walls for the house to preach to and what good would it do?  If the presidency of the Seventies have such important things to lay before the quorum as to get them together on Sunday, let them come and teach us all.  I now want to give council in this matter.  From this time forth and forever let not the president of any quorum ever again call a separate meeting from the public congregation unless the president of the church [orders] it.  The Seventies should be here and all the people should be here.  Let the Seventies all go and all other business when Sunday comes.  Let the Saints of God come together and hear the Elders teach.  Apply your hearts unto wisdom and get it.

If I am full of the spirit of God, I shall not get any more than I want.  It is the duty of all to come here that can come and let the power of eternity rest upon us.  And you should not be asleep but wide awake.

[40]        When I contrast the present with the past situations of the Saints, it gives me a great variety of feelings, both good and bad, joyful and sorrowful.  I have seen this people wading through a school of affliction.  They then were prayerful and had faith.  Their trying situation made them remember the Lord their God.  But now prosperity is heaped upon you.  And as this people are to be tried in all things; when prosperity comes, some forget God, wax fat and rich, [and] do not realize the blessings they are enjoying.

Some who are in poverty abroad desire to gather with the saints.  When they arrive and get rich, they forget what they have been.  Could you see the feelings of thousands now who are abroad who desire with all their hearts to come here; they would be willing to lick up the dust of your feet if they could but be here.  They still are with the wicked.  Bring them here.  They look upon many who were poor but now [are] rich.  They then desire to be rich also.  They want gold and will soon be willing to sacrifice the society of the saints and go to the gold mines and plunge themselves again into hell as it were from where they came to gratify an unlawful desire.

Thus it is with many men.  Some were to go to the [plat?] to Bear River and keep a ferry to get gold and wait on wicked ungodly men to get gold.  Where are their minds?  Like the fools?  O yes.  I told them I would not wait on the devils for loads of gold.  I would rather stay here and serve the Lord.  All I want of property is to serve the Lord and build up His kingdom with it.  I suppose many of the brethren and sisters are much tried to think they cannot have all they want.  I will tell you what to do.  Do all you can today and let the rest go until tomorrow.  Do your duty today and all will be right.

What good would it do you to have 999 years to see and hear the revelations and commandments of God if we have no time to carry one of them out?  If any one wants to get more revelations than they improve upon, they are greedy dogs.  It will take 20 years to do the work that God has revealed through the mouth of his servant Joseph which he laid out for us to perform before his death even during the last year of his life to say nothing of what he gave before.

[41]        I will tell you your duty.  Command your minds from everything that is not for you today and sit and worship God.  Not sit and sleep but worship the Lord today; go home at the close of the meeting and get your food and rest then come to meeting again.  Ponder and reflect upon the cause of the Lord Jesus Christ and his sufferings.  If there is anything necessary to be done, do it.  If an ox or an ass falls into the pit, pull him out.  Drive any beast out of your neighbor’s grain and put up the fence.  Do you meditate?  Do you pray in your families and in secret to get the spirit of God?

You say you have your trials.  I have mine.  I will tell some of them.  Brethren will come here to meeting on Monday morning, go through my field, leave my fence down, let their cattle and horses eat my wheat, borrow my car, wagon, shovel, hoe, ax, and everything I have got, and that, too, without liberty, and never bring it home.  And if it was not my duty to stay here, I would lay my hands upon some I could pick out who I have confidence in and would go and form a colony by myself and would not admit of any person who was not proven. I cannot get grass in the big field but many of you do it. But I now warn you not to steal my wood nor any of my property; for if you continue to do it, I will put a mark upon such men that they will carry all the days of their lives. They are hypocrites and think all others are the same.  I don’t love them very well.

Again I say to you it is not your duty to get in debt to these merchants.  I say you shall pay your debts. If you say you can’t pay, I say you shall pay them.

I speak of the faults of my brethren.  You may ask shall we forgive our brother his trespass if he repents?  I say yes.  “How many times?”  Until seventy times seven in one day if he repents and asks for it, even all sins except the sin against the Holy Ghost.  If you will bring back my tools, grass and grain which you have taken unlawfully or any of my property and ask forgiveness, I will forgive you.  I will not cast off any man until he cast himself off.  I will not reject any man until he rejects himself.  I will hold on to any man as long as he has any prospect of salvation. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


[42]                       Address by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

June 15, 1851


President Brigham Young addressed the congregation of the Saints in the following words: I would like to say enough in few words to fill three sermons. I have had to deliver my discourses in few words.  I wish the people to sustain the priesthood as the priesthood.  As to the opinion of men concerning myself as a man I care no more about it than I do the dust under my feet.  I don’t care what you say about me if you will only serve the Lord our God.  Do the people live so as to know the voice of the Good Shepherd?

I wish to state one item here which concerns you seriously.  That is concerning the Indians here. They are ignorant have been taught to steal and kill from their childhood, and those who could do the most of it were considered the greatest braves and chiefs.  As soon as they begin to steal here, many of you want them killed.

Compare their circumstances with your own.  You are taught from your cradles not to steal or kill as it is a great crime.  Now do you kill a white man as soon as he steals? Weigh this subject well.  Those who wish them killed for stealing a horse reduce themselves far below the Indian.  You love them as well as I do, but when the curse is taken off, they will again be fit for society.  But while they are in their degraded state, it rests upon us to use wisdom and judgment in their behalf.  I say to the Saints, kill every white man you see stealing and not kill the Indian for it, for the white men know better.

I speak to the Saints not as the Governor of Utah, but you and I are sent to save Israel not to kill them.  Every Elder that crosses a certain line, I do not wish to see him.  But those who do right or seek to do right, if they commit an error, we will forgive them.

I do not ask for influence only what God gives me.  Neither will I give any man influence only what the Lord and his own good conduct gives him, for if God does not give a man influence, all else will be of no use to him.  If I do the work of God, all is well.  But I will give no man influence only what God gives.

[43]        A few words to families who have not a head to govern [them.  They] will be destroyed.  The man is the head of the family and should govern it.  The hand may say to the head if I really thought you would govern right I would be governed by you, but I am afraid you will not and I want to govern you and dictate the head.  Then the shoulders and stomach will want to dictate.  But does not good sense teach you that your head should govern your body?  Your experience teaches the same. Your head dictates you what to do, and when your head dictates the body to do wickedly and pollute the body, then the head should be cut off so as not to pollute the body any longer.

G.A. Smith remarked that there were some bodies who would not [act/eat?] unless the belly told the head what to do.  In the strict sense of the word, no man is qualified to be judge and rule in the priesthood until he is qualified to rule himself and be king over himself.  It is thus in families.  Children and mothers, have you a good husband and father? Let the wife rule the husband and she will keep him tied to the dishcloth and kitchen all the days of his life, and it proves a curse upon him.

There is a curse upon man that I would not take off if I could.  For in the experience you have, you are led to salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Do you know your calling, mothers?  It is your duty to brace up your feelings as men have to do and be mistress of your house.  I go to the house to rest.  The mother says I cannot govern the children.  I wish you would.  But this is not right.  The elders of this church have to go abroad to preach the gospel.  They cannot be with their children.  When they come home to spend a little time they want to dandle their children upon their knee and not go to whipping them.  The mother should govern them until the sons go with their fathers in the field.  Then let the father govern.  I can govern my children when they are with me.  I would rather one of my sons would stab me to the heart and kill me dead than to conquer and master me in government.

When any undertake to govern out of their place, they do not prosper.  As an ensample P.P. Pratt and John Taylor undertook to govern and control and set right my affairs at Winter Quarters while I was on a pioneer [44] journey to the mountains, and they liked to have destroyed many.  But I said peace be still and I saved the people.

I say to mothers in the name of the Lord God of Israel, do your duty.  Don’t ask the father to whip the child.  Do it yourself if necessary and let mothers control the daughters until they go to their husbands.  But let the man rule and preside over his household.

And I say to the men, do not go home and abuse your wives because of what I have said but treat them kindly.  What would you think of a man who would get up before a glass and cut and tear his own heart out?  As well of him as I would of a man who would beat and abuse his wife.

President Richards remarked every man makes his own hell or heaven.  If we keep the commandments and do right, we have a heaven within us all the time.  Forty men and all the devils in hell cannot make a hell for us if [we] do right; but if you stop to parley with the Devil, he will soon get the advantage over you and make a hell for you.

During the evening we met for prayer after which the president taught us, much to our edification.  The spirit should control the body. The monitor whispers to the mind of man when it does wrong and says this is wrong, points out the right path, and says walk ye in it.  The soul or spirit of man wants feeding as well as the body or it will dry up and wither like the Quakers and other sects.

A Mormon boy will whip out the priest.  We will advance until we can stand in the society of the Gods.  Then let us do right and keep the commandments of God in all things.  Our knowledge comes by experience.  It is necessary that we should have crosses and trials of all kinds in order to gain knowledge by experience.  If we overcome we get a great victory.  Continue to do so until we arrive at our high stations to become gods, organize worlds, and control them.  All our passions God gave us but we must control them and make a right use of them.  Our spirits were pure from eternity but condescended to take a body in its impure state was married to it will continue with it through time in mortality through eternity in immortality.  In speaking of the married state says if man and wife become alienated from each other it is in one sense the spirit of adultery. (W. Woodruff Jrnl.)


[45]                       Address by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

June 22, 1851


If I can see the motives of the heart of man and know eternal things by the spirit of God, it is far more beautiful than to hear the words of men.  Should an angel come and converse with any man in the congregation, no other one might know it.  He would think the person spoke to him as one speaks to another face to face, when he would not be seen at all only by the spirit of God or by vision.  We may know by the spirit of God what is in a man’s heart before he speaks.  At all times listen to the still small voice of the spirit of God and it will save the Saints from many snares.  If you get angry, don’t sin nor let the sun go down upon your wrath.

I do not expect perfection in men–not what the world calls perfection.  I have seen a perfect prophet and perfect apostles; that is, perfect in their calling but not the perfection the world looks for.  If Joseph had been as perfect as the people wished him to be he could not have lived with the people nor stayed this side of the veil as long as he did.  We could not have heard his voice nor seen his face.  He would have had to been veiled.  Israel could not endure the face of Moses at times.

The Lord expects us to be in the path of duty.  When we get in eternity, we shall be angels or Gods.  We shall advance to godhead if we do right.  In speaking of the law what a simple thing it is.  What is the law to those who do right?  It is not made for anybody but the transgressor and lawless and wicked.  If we do not infringe upon the rights of others, all things are ours in heaven and earth, time and eternity, life and death; heaven, earth, and hell and all that is therein is ours.  If we do not infringe upon the rights of any other being, we shall become Gods and fill immensity as our Father in Heaven does.

I can weigh all the _______(?), philosophers, and learned men of the earth on the scale and know just what they weigh and can circumscribe them all.  All is mine:  heaven, earth, hell, wives, children . . . and I am Christ’s and Christ is God’s.  It is not known to us where the stakes are set to God’s immensity.  Take the world at large and [46] they get to the end of their chain when they get to the mill pond.

It is a startling idea to think we are worshipping a God that once was in the situation that we are in ourselves.  They had to pass through a probation of pain and suffering like ourselves, and He was made perfect through sufferings.  The Son of God passed through it and the father would not require of a son what He would not do Himself.  All our sufferings will exalt us in the presence of God if we endure them patiently.

A word of advice concerning lawing. I don’t never want to hear of another lawsuit among the brethren.  Is it anything but good common sense to never have another suit before a judge to say nothing of revelation?  It does not require any great perfection to accomplish this.  Let men do right.  Do your neighbour good not evil.  The Lord will burn up the earth to cleanse it as you would an old pipe.

You think it hard to have to water your land here, but it is far more healthy than to have rain.  It was so in Egypt.  If it did not rain in Illinois and Missouri more than here, it would be far more healthy.  This could be reasoned out on natural principles.

A word more upon lawsuits.  There would not be a lawsuit in this valley if all men would do right and were Saints, but the net has gathered all kinds–good, bad and worse.  Let twelve men get drunk in this community and it ruins the place in the estimation of good men.  We have to bear the character of the drunkard.  A few stinking fish in the net defile it and the whole net stinks and it creates a prejudice against it.  Those who were acquainted with Joseph know that if he dealt any in temporal things, it created a prejudice against him.  He bought many goods to help carry on the public works, but the people were ready to get it all away from him.  So it is now.

But I say unto all men who are Saints, put to your hands and help build up Zion and the kingdom of God.  We are scholars in the great school and must learn; we are a kingdom and must bring the kingdom in subject to the will of God. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


[47]                       Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

June 29, 1851


President Young remarked, I join in testimony with the brethren.  I wish to be a doer of the word.  I feel the importance of the remarks of the last speaker Brother Spencer.  Those who are not ready to meet the Bridegroom will not be invited to the supper.  And the time is near.

Jesus Christ is an ensample to all Saints. He was filled with wisdom in his youth, but in his childhood and infancy he was like other children.  It has been said that he was in infancy as wise as in manhood, but this is not the case.  He was subject to temptation as we are but was not overcome by it.  If we have become acquainted with our follies, let us put them away and apply our hearts unto wisdom.  Let us have compassion on others as we wish God to have compassion on us.  We should increase in wisdom until the day of redemption.  No person can receive all at once but increase little by little until the day of perfection.  Apply our hearts to wisdom and it will produce peace, health, wealth and every good thing.  Should you see a people carry out the principles of wisdom, peace would be the fruit and you would never see contention unto the day of your death.

Ask the world if they do not like a people who live in peace and are contented, and they will say yes it is beautiful.  Take the world at the present time and they are like wolves–eat each other up. They fight and contend and devour each other.  The Abolitionists become heated and say the Negro must be made equal to the white man at the table and all other places.  They will at the same time turn away the widow and orphan and put into prison a poor man for debt, and deprive him of his time to pay the debt.

Instead of this we should feed the hungry and do good to all men as we have an opportunity.  Then we have a Zion.  It is peace in the heart.  We should bear an evil from a friend as well as an enemy.  You ask the Lord to bear with your infirmities; so we should bear with each other.  What is the necessity of doing wrong, having lawsuits, and contending with each other?  Go to law and spend $100 to [48] collect $5.  You may be told you are independent and have rights.  You have a right to do good and not evil.

The God I serve will deal out good to His Saints and everything that is necessary for them and reveal His will unto them, and teach them what to do.  He will not lie or deceive me.  I will ask, O Lord, did you do this or that?  Did you bless this man or that man so and so, or did you suffer that evil to be so and so?  Yes, I have done this to try men so and so.  Do you want me to do so and so?  If I am going to do a thing, I ask, is it the will of God? If I cannot get the will of God upon it, I refuse to do it lest I do a thing wrong.

We want to do right.  Then we prosper.  Are the people doing right?  Is the kingdom growing?  Are there principles in this kingdom to govern all men with?  All that the nations of the earth now possess would not make this people happy as they now are.  Give us the Kingdom of God instead of the glories of the world.

There has been a great stir to exalt the Negro and make him equal to the white man, but there is a curse upon the seed of Cain and all hell cannot wipe it out and it cannot be taken off until God takes it off.  When a person unlawfully seeks for power and exaltation by taking the blessings which belong to another, he will sink far below the other.  As Lucifer, the son of the morning, sought the glory that belonged to Christ, the firstborn, he was thrust down to hell.  So Cain sought Abel’s blessing and took the life of his brother.  The consequence was Cain was cursed and his seed, and this curse will remain until Abel’s posterity will get all the blessing there is for him. Then the curse may be taken from Cain or his posterity, but his posterity will be below Abel’s.  All are slaves.  Politicians are the worst slaves, and if we don’t do right, we shall ketch the lash.  We are the freest people on earth.  Queen Victoria is a slave.  Had to ask the liberty to marry Prince Albert.  But we are free.  We have the right God and kingdom.

Let us not dishonor God, His kingdom or our brethren.  If we do, we shall sink below them and their children.  If the wife dishonors the husband, the children will dishonor the mother and she must welter under it.  Honor the priesthood in all its parts.  Be more faithful.  Be [49] more prudent.  Administer to the wants of all as far as you can.  I will not quarrel with my neighbor about the water if I loose the wheel, for if my neighbors raise wheat, I can obtain some of it to eat.  Other remarks were made by the speaker. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Do We Not Live in the Last Days?

Orson Hyde, editor of Frontier Guardian

July 1, 1851


The above question is an important one, and no observing or reflecting mind can prevent it from occupying an important place in the regions of thought and meditation.  The changes and revolutions now transpiring in foreign countries, and the unsettled and restless condition of our own, together with the plague and pestilence that visit every country and waste the inhabitants among all nations–the explosions and disasters upon the waters, multiplying with fearful strides theft, robbery, and murder increasing throughout the land –Incendiarism, tempests, fire and floods, sweeping in their destructive course, the finest specimens of nature and art into the general mass of devastation and ruin, too clearly and fearfully declare, in language not easily misconstrued, that the natural, moral and political elements are being troubled by an invisible hand.  The bonds of union are becoming like the spider’s web around the giant –the axe is being laid at the root of confidence; and true and faithful friends and alliances have become like angel’s visits — “few and far between”.

Why all this confusion, distrust, misery, and woe?  Because the “Angel of the Covenant” has poured out his vial upon the elements, and its contents are scattered everywhere, like the hoar frosts of winter; though invisible to the vulgar eye, yet the eye that is single not only marks its effects but comprehends the cause.  Under its effects the nations are jealous, the people foolish and angry, the atmosphere charged with plague and disease, while folly and madness go unrebuked. “They are drunken, but not with wine; they stagger but not with strong drink.”  The nations reel to and fro like a drunken man, and they know not what aileth them. The very [50] spirits from the unseen or spiritual world are disturbed!  Unauthorized, they come to man and contribute their share towards swelling the confusion and excitement that are destined to cover the earth. They ere long will prophesy–call fire down from heaven, work miracles, and gather the kings and their armies to the great battle.  These hosts of the high ones will be punished on high, and the kings of the earth punished upon the earth.  We are rapidly merging into the last days, and we shall be compelled to witness the scenes thereof; and are all these things to be done, and the Most High have no confidential friend or prophet on earth through whom he can kindly whisper these important events to those who seek to serve Him with all their hearts?  Paul said to his friends, “ye are not in the dark so that day should overtake you as a thief.”  While the unbelief of the world will not allow of any further revelation, the day of the Lord, with all its majesty, sublimity and awful grandeur, will overtake the world as a thief in the night.  Arise ye virgins, and go ye out to meet the Bridegroom.  The foolish ones who have been thrown off their guard by Strang, Brewster, and Co., may find themselves without light, and also without the material (oil) to produce light.

The saints should watch and pray and thereby lay up in store a good foundation against the day that will try men’s souls;  for they will deceive, if it were possible, even the very elect.  Strange things, fearful sights and signs in the heavens and on the earth will appear, and men’s hearts will fail them for fear of those things that are coming on the earth; and even the powers of the “spirit world” will be shaken, and Satan come down having great wrath and power, knowing his time to be short.  We shall not be called to wrestle with flesh and blood, but with principalities and powers, with spiritual wickedness in high places.  Arm yourselves for the contest, for behold and lo, it cometh, and the last days are soon upon us with all their wonders and strange events. (Mill. Star 13:205)


[51]                       Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

July 6, 1851


President Young remarked we get good from all men who speak by the spirit of God and according to their calling.  I speak free.  So may all men.  If we speak incorrect, we should be corrected.  We want to speak free that we may gather good whether it is in the past, present or to come.  Brother Kempton has been speaking.  He professes to be a scholar.  I do not.  But he has murdered the English language today.  I want speakers to speak the English language correctly for our children’s sake.

As to principles, there are no principles in heaven, earth or hell but what the Saints have to apply to their proper place.  If we could understand all things, we should know that here is the place to begin to make the people happy.  If we could understand the dealings and providences of God with us and the object of them, there would not be the discontent and murmurings of the people that there now are.  But we should have peace, joy and contentment.

Concerning spiritual and temporal things, I would say that temporal and spiritual things are one.  But what we call temporal are the coarser things which we see with our eyes, [but] the finer or spiritual things we cannot see with our eyes unless they are touched by the spirit of God.  Then we could see spiritual things.  To say the spiritual eye cannot see temporal things is folly.  But it looks unnatural to see people put out their own eyes to spite their neighbor.  Anciently God, angels and eternal things were considered natural.  My mind can see many things when clothed with the spirit of God that my eyes cannot.

In speaking of hell, it is called very hot.  But our God is a consuming fire.  Hell is here.  It is said the devil was cast down to the earth; also that he was cast down to hell.  He is in our midst striving to lead captive the children of men.

I want the brethren to speak freely, to speak all that is in you; and if you have an error, let it out and exchange it for true principle.  Some of the saints want more revelation, mysteries, great things.  But do they know what [52] they ask for or what they have already got?  If the request of many men was granted, it would be like casting pearls before swine.  They would trample them in the mire.  We have enough now of the key words and tokens to take us through the veil into the celestial world and lead us to the throne of God, and what more do you want?  Have you ever pondered in your hearts by visions and the spirit of God eternal things–even the redeeming of all worlds?  From there down to the smallest things God has made?  Have you ever reflected upon the great system of salvation of the creatures of God?  Is man contented?  He is not.  Can man alter the decrees of God concerning the seed of Abraham or anything else?  He cannot.  Why not quarrel about Christ coming instead of the Father?

When the Father appointed Jesus Christ, the First-born, to come and redeem the earth, there was contention got up.  The second brother, Lucifer, the son of the morning, wanted the honor to come and redeem the earth.  But Christ was the appointed one.  It was His right by appointment and birthright. But the war and contention became so hot and the influence of Lucifer was so great that he got one-third of the hosts in heaven to join his standard, and when he was hurled down to hell like lightning from heaven, one-third was cast down with him.  Where is he and those that were cast down?  With those spirits that accompanied him.  They are here on this earth and they have blinded the children of men and [are] still seeking to overthrow the kingdom of God.  He is a thorn in the flesh of the children of God.

But this is all right, and we should be contented with what God sees fit to grant unto us and be contented with our lot.  If the Devil had been contented and acted in his place, he would not have been thrust down to hell.  Any man who seeks to do a thing that he cannot do, and should not do, it casts him into hell and makes a hell for him when men ask for things that do not belong to him and it makes him unhappy.  But do what God wants you to do and wait on those who are above you and all will be right.

Why did not one of the apostles quarrel with Jesus Christ to redeem the world?  Jesus set a little child in their midst and said, if ye do not become as this little [53] child, you cannot enter into the kingdom of God.  If you would be the greatest man in the kingdom of God, you must be the greatest slave or servant.  You will do more than any other man.  The apostles did not quarrel to know who should or should not be president.  Why do I or you not quarrel?  Because we were not Joseph Smith.  To want to and cannot is hell.  Never seek to do a thing you cannot accomplish.  Every man has his lot appointed him, and he should be contented with it.  There is the work of God, angels, men and devils.

Is the Bible good? The Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants?  Yes, they are good.  Those books contain the words of God, angels, men and devils.  And if you don’t want to be in hell all the time, be contented with your lot.  If you don’t learn to be contented, you will be in hell with Brother Kempton who says he was in hell one year.  Then learn to be contented and you will be happy.  Don’t complain because you are not God, Jesus Christ, an angel, Joseph, Brigham, a man, a woman, a father, a mother, a son, a daughter, or anything else, but be contented with the lot in which God has placed you.  Then you will be happy and blessed.

The Blacks cannot take the curse off themselves until God takes it off.  Make all men saints and they will treat each other well.  So the Lamanites are cursed.  But are there not blessings for them?  Yes, the same as there are for the Saints, for Joseph, Brigham, and Jesus Christ, and all faithful men and women in their time and season.  So be contented. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

July 20, 1851


Brother Kempton was very anxious to preach from text Abram’s bosom.  Liberty was granted him and he went ahead but did not do much.

President Young followed and said Brother Kempton has had his liberty as is given to every man who speaks here.  He has not satisfied his mind at all.  He may have much in his mind but can say but little here.  He is not able to handle the scriptures and know all the spirits in [54] the world as some can.  When the dark sayings in the scriptures are understood, they are plain.  The scriptures here that speak of Abram’s bosom are not as given by Br. Kempton.  Abram is in paradise.  Lazarus is with him.

For me to explain is to tell the truth.  A man that feels and talks to the people should be a Bible of himself.  If a man that teaches and leads the people is not filled with truth so as to be able to teach the people without quoting the teachings of another altogether, is a blind guide and will go to hell with those he leads.

It is the intention of the Lord to teach men principle in progression until he shall know all things, that he may arise through faith, power and victory until they obtain every good thing, even to arise to be Gods even the sons of God which blessing we cannot obtain without experience.  We should not sin when we are tried and tempted but overcome which will give us glory, honor and eternal life.  As fast as I improve upon what I have, more will be given me.  The Savior was subject to all that we were from His birth to His death.  He applied His heart unto wisdom.  We should do so to apply our hearts unto wisdom from day to day and you will receive all that he did.  If I threw out all that is in me, what faults I have will give place for truth and that is good.  I feel to praise the name of God for all he has done for me.  My heart is like Abinidab continually.

All persons see times when they wish truth to prevail.  Mormonism is all truth.  The Lord has raised up a prophet and see who brought it forth and established it.  He was faithful unto death and sealed his testimony with his blood.  A certain prophecy says when the Book of Mormon shall come unto the gentile the Jews shall be gathered at Jerusalem.  All truth is ours in heaven, earth and hell.  It is all the truth we want.

But do the Church or Elders want correcting?  Yes, for they have errors and false notions.  The net has all kinds of fish.  We have some as cursed rascals among us as dwell on the earth, and we find evil here as well as anywhere else.  Yet Zion is here. It is in my heart.  Peace dwells with me and good principles will prevail here until all evil is overcome even in all the earth.  Let no man find fault with his neighbor until he is righteous.  I don’t ask anything of others that I won’t do myself.  And never find fault with [55] another about anything you allow in yourself.  Don’t you swear, scold, and do wrong yourself?  Then don’t find fault with another for it until you subdue your own passions and the evil that is in yourself. Some will do anything to preside over another when they cannot preside over themselves.  Now remember this that we will have Zion when all wickedness is gone. We have got to fight, fight, fight, until we gain the victory over ourselves. Remember this and overcome.

What are the feelings of my heart?  It is to bless the people and do them good. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


July 24th Commemoration

Extract from the Deseret News

(as reported by Wilford Woodruff)

July 24, 1851


This is an important day with the Saints of God in the valley of the mountains.  The following is an extract from the Deseret News:

“The Celebration of the 24th of July.  The anniversary of the entrance of the Latter-day Saint pioneers into the valley of the Great Salt Lake.  The approach of the rising kind of day was hailed by the roar of cannon, and the stillness of the morning was broken by the moving of the Mammoth Carriage of the Nauvoo Brass Band sending forth on the wings of the morning its sublime strains of martial and cheering music. The citizens of Great Salt Lake shot forth from their domestic circles dressed as in the robes of beauty, concentrating towards the scene of a congregated throng of life where the ebullitions of joy, the rose of health, the [glad?]ness of intelligence, and the combined feelings of an united and redeemed people shed a lustre of glory through all the congregated saints.

The order of the day was kept up by the firing of cannon 110 times. The organization and parading of streets by an escort consisting of the Nauvoo Brass band, the Military Band, the Pioneers of ’47, the Regency, the aged fathers, young lads, followed by the mothers in Israel, young girls, young men and young women; the presidency with the officers of state formed the escorted party.  In their rear were 24 bishops forming a phalanx of [56] the combined wisdom and strength of the kingdom of God in the last days.  The numerous flags and banners, the various emblems of art, agriculture and industry, and the music accompanying the procession from the president’s residence to the Bowery could only be surpassed in the armies of heaven.

The bursts of feelings by music, singing, speeches, orations, toasts the order of arrangement during the exercises in the Bowery were beyond the most exquisite calculation of the most fastidious and was unsurpassed by any preceding it among the most refined and civilized nation on earth.  Here was the power of truth, the literature of God’s spirit, the elegance of apostles, the laws of the kingdom of heaven, the songs of Zion sung not in a strange land and the harps hung not upon the willows, the beauty and ornament of the ideal of man’s existence, the ladies of Deseret, the heroism of the valiant of the earth, and the enjoyment of the luxuries and productions of a consecrated land in all its richness and profusion and the enjoyment of contentment.

The closing shades of evening came over the city without the alloy of any accident to mar the proceedings of the hallowed day.  No curses of a drinking rabble, no feelings of an ignorant or jealous bigotry, no effusion of party strife, but all that could elevate the mind of man and add to the enjoyment of a social and civilized ______(?).  Among the speeches made was an interesting one from W.W. Phelps.”

In many respects this was the most interesting day of my life.  My father, myself, and my children making three generations in the lineage of my fathers were in that Grand Escort to honor the Holy Prophets of God while on their march from President Young’s house to the Tabernacle, which was filled with the Saints of the Most High. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Remarks by Orson Hyde

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

July 24, 1851


Elder O. Hyde addressed the meeting and said the floods in the western states had been exceeding high, so [57] much so that many could not emigrate.  There were about 700 wagons on the way.  The spirit of emigration was among all nations.  The seas were white with the sails of every nation who were emigrating to this country to find a home.  Many might embrace the gospel and come to Zion and help build it up.

The feelings of the Saints are if I can get to the valley then I shall be happy.  Then some want to go to Sanpete to Iron County and to San Diego.  Then they would not be satisfied and people wish to emigrate to another world and think when they get to heaven their sorrow will end, but there will be things for us to reach after still when we are there and it will continue through all eternity.

There are many novels written and printed out, but we do not want false things to interest us.  But just look into the Book of Nature and everything whether it looks up or down points to God.  God is seen in it all.

Every substance is surrounded with an atmosphere in some respects that shows what is within.  So there is an atmosphere that surrounds all persons which you feel when you meet with them.  Some person’s atmosphere you like; others you do not.  With some you feel safe; others you do not.  It is so in meeting with families.  Jesus said when you go into a house, let your peace dwell upon it, but if they do not receive you, let your peace return unto you again.  This is true doctrine.  Let my atmosphere be good so that the spirit of God and good men may dwell with me in peace, for that person who dwells near the Lord and has an eye single to his glory can tell whether he has the spirit of God or not when he meets with him.  Many bodies are opaque and not luminous, but when the light of a luminous body strikes them, it sets them all in a blaze.  So with one who has the spirit of God.  When his spirit rests upon another it overshadows him.  It sets him in a blaze and the great light can see the heart.  We are all as it were painters painting our own characters.  And every good deed will give our sign a white color and every wicked deed a black color; and when we have painted unto the end of our days, our character will be presented before God in its true light and we shall see as we are seen and know as we are known.

[58]        Some think the judgment will not be until after the resurrection of some thousands of years. But remember that when you lie down at night and are weary and fall asleep, before you are aware of it, the morning comes, the time is past, and you are awake.  But in the church and kingdom of God what is sealed on earth is sealed in heaven, what is bound on earth is bound in heaven.  And if a man sins, he is soon brought into judgment, for now is the judgment with him.  God will judge the world but He may not judge an individual Himself, but His servants will judge them under His direction.  It is said the Saints will judge angels.  But what angels?  Why fallen angels.  For those angels who remain in heaven are now above us while those who are fallen are below us.  For who is better able to judge them than the saints who cast them out?  Many other interesting remarks were made by Elder Hyde.

Elder H.C. Kimball arose and said the remarks of Elder Hyde were good, and I will apply them, and I want all to lift up their sign and I want to imitate the best painted sign in Israel and the character that is most like God.  I never expect to see a time in all eternity but what I shall have to abide a law, be trimmed and scourged until I am a fit subject to become a God. If you get into heaven and rebel, you will be cast out.  There is always danger of falling as long as we are going up a ladder. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Remarks by W.W. Phelps

July 24, 1851


Beloved Regents and Citizens: Today we celebrate the victory of patience over passions; the dawn of light over darkness; the success of reason over madness; the reign of wisdom over folly; the prosperity of truth over error; the triumph of pure religion over strong persecution; and what shall I say?  It is a day of exultation; the pastime of the Lord’s anointed; a holiday of bliss; for the achievement of this human happiness; this Mormon jubilee, was not won at the cannon’s mouth; fighting for the laurels of fame; neither was it won by storming a fortress, and butchering men, women, and children, to satisfy a sovereign that we were heroes;  the bloody battle-[59]field and the crimson flag have not told the world that we cope with our foes by the purse or the sword; the honor of plundering nations, if that is honor, belongs to the Christians, not the Mormons; the trophies of war are the property of citizen soldiers, not the wealth of pioneer saints.  No, we come not as the scientific would, with philosophy today and devastation tomorrow; with a Bible in one hand, and a sword in the other; we come not as the hypocrites with long faces and long prayers to be seen and heard of men; but we come in the name of Israel’s God, as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; we come as the sons apparent of the sires of “76”; we come as the heirs of the kingdom holding the keys of the priesthood, to minister salvation where there is an ear to hear and a heart to receive; and we come as a part of the people of the republic of North America, to rejoice because the Lord has led us out of bondage and placed us among the mountains in this goodly valley.

Four years ago today, President Young, with the faithful pioneers, came into this valley by inspiration.  The evil spirits from the “departed damned” which had wandered here for ages, “grinned horribly a ghastly smile” and fled; the Utah ______(?), in his degradation, skulked into the canyon to slake his hunger on crickets:  auspicious day!  The destiny of the church was hid in this unmissioned recess, like a pearl in the sea; but when a prayer ascended up to the recorder of heaven, the spell burst; the angels shouted, and we, we–not the God forsaken, but the world-hated Mormons, had a home prepared in the desert.  Yes, a home prepared, a thousand miles from the confines of democracy or freedom on the east, and nearly a thousand miles from the suburbs of hell on the west.  Yes, the valley of rest in the tops of the mountains, where as Isaiah wisely predicted:  “No galley with oars, neither gallant ship shall pass by.”  Glory to God for his mercy and thanks to the pioneers for fortitude.

And what has been done in four years?  Let the public works bear testimony; then look to the east and west, the north and the south, and behold the golden wheat fields smiling with abundance, and all this, too, where it rarely rains in summer.  Success to irrigation and [60] industry, what has been done can be, and what has not been done may be.

The valley teems with health and happiness, peace and joy, and like the star-spangled heavens after a storm, the Great Basin is sprinkled with the life-glowing habitations of heaven’s noblemen.

But this is not all; in the brief rise of this state, or as is now the case, Territory, to a place in the annals of the general government, this Board of Regents, of which I have the honor to be a member, has been brought to being, to manage the efforts of the newly chartered University of Deseret, by the common consent of a generous, great-hearted people.  And what is expected of this board?  Will they walk in the tracks of the Literati of the old world?  Tie up the philosophy, wisdom, researches, classics and learned labors of six thousand years in a silken money purse?  Fiddle for the pope and dance for the devil?  Hold the king’s stirrups, and kiss the emperor’s foot, crape the regions of light in black?  Write upon the priest’s robe, mystery of mysteries?  Motto the lawyer’s mantle, and judge’s ermine with “Great is Diana of the Ephesians”?  Teach the Jew, Jaw Eloheem Yerah?  The poor Greek “– O Sophos Moros” and give the learned doctor a splendid diploma written in these words: oc-con-e-o-co-ge-co-co-cach-e-cach-e-co-dan-go? Then sell sheep skins at a fortune a piece–wrap themselves up (like silkworms in their cocoons) in the cobwebs of fame, and leave a night-caught world to feel their way to glory?  No!  No!!  God forbid that these messengers of light shall ever blast their reputations, by stealing the sights from dead menÕs eyes, to mystify the truth with.

This is the sum of the matter:  Up for heaven; down for hell.  Look over this fame-spotted earth, carrying her eight or nine hundred millions to the grave, generation after generation;  and how many, through the improved philosophy and approved philanthropy of the learned nobility, and the superior light, and tender clemency of the luxuriant clergy, have eaten of the fat of the land, partook of hidden manna, drank of the waters of life freely, and slid into power with the upper ten thousand, singing:


[61]                              “Hush! my dear, be still and slumber,

Holy angels guard thy bed;

Heavenly blessings without number,

Gently fall upon thy head.”


Not many!  Not many!

But what can this board do?  Do?  Yes, do!  Do good, and revolutionize the science of a purse-proud generation.  All the language, all the books, and all the philosophy of man, must fall with Babylon the great, and like a bubble bursting upon the water, leave no trace behind.  Of what use, to the great mass of mankind, are the highest institutions of the civilized world?  Of the same use that the net is to the spider, the gun to the hunter, and the fire to the stubble.  The prisoners of time and eternity, whenever they come to a knowledge of the truth, will learn that bogus philosophy, bogus religion, and bogus hopes, stole their reputations in life, and left them in poverty, death, darkness and despair.  In the like condition, now groan the inhabitants of the Luciferean reign:  The voice of the people, the voice of the Devil!

Here then we stop and turn to the University of Deseret for more light and better wisdom; beseeching this board, the Lord’s anointed, the elders of Israel, and the whole church, with one consent, to pray the Lord, our Heavenly Father, to send down some of the regents from the great University of Perfection, as he did to Noah, Moses, and others, to unfold unto his servants the principles of wisdom, philosophy and science, which are truth, while His elders gather the earthly crumbs of science; the mouldering specimens of art, the tarnished gems of fame, now buried among the tombs of fallen greatness, from the four quarters of the globe, that His people may prepare themselves for the great revelation and restitution of all things spoken by the mouths of all the holy prophets since the worlds began.  We know there are pearls of great price and diamonds of princely value among the rubbish, and cinder heaps of this world’s glory.  But what will all the precious things of time, the inventions of men, the records, from Japheth in the ark to Jonathan in Congress, embracing the wit and the grit, the fashions and the folly, which so methodically, gram-[62]matically, and transcendentally grace the libraries of the elite of nations really be worth to a saint, when our Father sends down his regents, the angels, from the grand library of Zion above, with a copy of the history of eternal lives; the records of worlds; the genealogy of the Gods; the philosophy of truth; the names of our spirits from the Lamb’s Book of Life, and the songs of the sanctified?  About then, the wisdom of the wise (of this world) will perish, and the understanding of the prudent be hid — while the trump of God calls the kingdom to order for oral instruction.  But I pause:  the instruction of angels is too sweet for the air of the desert, yet.

Ho, earth, earth, bring in thy mites, that the combined knowledge of men may be used for suffering humanity while clothed in flesh; to lighten the mind; to soften the heart; to brighten the eyes; to lengthen the life; to strengthen the body, and educate the spirit for eternity.  And ye regents and elders of Israel, bring the elements together; pile up the light wood of love; take a spark from under the altar and kindle a holy fire; light the candles of the Lord and illuminate the whole earth for the wedding supper of the Lamb; make Deseret as famous as Eden; instead of the flaming sword to guard, hoist the ensign of truth on the lofty towers of her university to guide the meek of the last days, to the home of the blessed, the haven of peace, the Zion of God.

Here let a nursery be sown with the seeds of understanding, that every family in the kingdom may transplant for themselves an orchard from the same; from the precious fruit of which, in a few years, the eyes of the world may be opened to see their nakedness, and kings shut their mouths; senators learn wisdom, and all flesh bow the head in humble reverence to these holy plants of renown.  Here let the filthy degraded Israelite of America, the poor Indian, come and unlearn his corruptions and errors; sip at the fountain of sense distilled from the flowers of Zion, till by its life-regenerating powers, he becomes white, delightsome, and holy.

Here let the Jehovah-smitten Canaanite bow in humble submission to his superiors, and prepare himself for a mansion of glory when the black curse of disobedience shall have been chased from his skin by a [63] glance from the Lord.  Here let the Turk and the heathen break off the shackles of ignorance, and clothe themselves with the garments of humanity while they partake of the tree of life.  Here let the Asian from the blighted regions of righteousness, while the fig trees are leaving come and be washed from the blood blotches of Juggernaut, or the death camps of Baal, that his eyes may be opened to see and his heart softened to feel, “How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.”

Here let emperors, autocrats, kings and courtiers, bankers and beggars, in flocks like pigeons, fly for refuge, when the wrath of God is poured out upon the wicked without measure, and taste how good the Lord is, exclaiming in ecstasy, “Our fathers have inherited lies and things wherein there was no profit.”  Here let the boasting United States, as they pass like wild geese without a leader to the “dreadful splendor” of golden California, with a printed revelation of their occupations sticking out of their pockets:  “Monte: Hark from the tombs!” suddenly stop, dash down their little “aquafortis jars” of death, for one taste from our great honey casks of eternal lives.  Here let judges, officers, lawyers, and politicians sit like patience on a monument, and learn that laws were made for transgressors:  that righteous men live much above the law as the sky is above the plains of the west or the quagmires of the east; that they may deeply reflect, that the desert, enjoyed with virtuous liberty, has more charms than the boasted “asylum of the oppressed” boiling over with slavery, and vomiting up the putrid dregs of debauchery, profanity, treachery, bribery–murder and treason not excepted; that they may lay their hands upon their mouths and groan over the degeneracy of the sons and daughters of the patriotic sires, and discreet mothers of “76”;–conceived in sin and brought up in corruption, the present generation flares before the face of the world, “a seed of evil-doers”–politicians, bogus-makers, black-legs, whoremongers, and bachanalians, hell-bent on mischief and destruction crying “Union” for the sake of office, and “Peace” for the sake of plunder–verily, verily they have their reward! Here, while the earth is preparing for her end, let children be taught to honor God and their parents from the cradle to the grave, and walk [64] in the old paths marked out by Jehovah before the foundation of the world, to bring the children of men into His presence, that their good deeds may shine before heaven and the holy angels like the sunlight upon the grass of the field and the leaves of the forest.  Here let the sacred rights of matrimony, until the children of Abraham become as numerous as the stars above or the sands below; that from the resurrection the “joint heirs of Jesus Christ” may do the work that their Father did, till each in the center of his own glory may reign in his own eternity–a God. Fathers in Israel:  Deseret University speaks to you in the name of the Lord:  train up your children in the principles of holiness, that they may take the kingdom from your shoulders and bear it triumphantly before this generation with clean hands and pure hearts.

Mothers in Israel:  A word to you may not be amiss.  As knowledge was opened to the understanding of men in the flesh, through the first act of your own choice, so let the last one be, to teach children, and daughters especially, to watch, as well as pray, and beware of the leaven of the Gentiles!  Let it be a sacred motto:  “She that marries out of the Priesthood, marries for hell”; for there is “neither marrying nor giving in marriage” in the resurrection!  The light from the university will teach you better than to expect “figs from thorns, or grapes from thistles.”

Sons of Zion:  The world waits for your wild oats with pockets full of gold:  go to the university, and there learn that union is strength, and knowledge is power, and that the glory of God as far exceeds the fame of this earth, as the light of the sun does the glimmer of a candle.  Let your motto be, “Eternal lives.”

Daughters of Zion:  Let your virtue adorn you; and go into the house of the Lord and receive the keys, which unlock a glory more precious than the world ever had; and prepare for an exaltation among the nobles of heaven.  Let your names go down in the archives of the university as gems for the sanctified to rejoice over in eternity.

And these little boys and girls shall not be passed without notice; the coming glory of Israel sparkles in your bright eyes; and the untold renown of Zion already [65] perches on your flaxen heads.  May God give you a double portion of His spirit to school your minds to live like men and women, die the death of the righteous, and hear the welcome plaudit: “Well done, good and faithful servants, enter into the joys of thy Lord.”

Pioneers of ’47!  You were the high hope of Israel, the well-favored of the Lord, and the “glad you’re gone of hypocrites, savage, religious and official”;  by the will of Jehovah you found this recess of righteousness; and may the saints be as liberal to reward your faithfulness as you were diligent to find their happy home.  Let me also connect with this great expedition, the forlorn hope of ’46, the gallant 500, who went round by Mexico to gratify the capricious flesh-man of the warhawk: they opened the golden veins of California, and let the treasures run like water, till the dissipated nations have nearly drowned their sense.  Ah!  Ye goodly sons of both camps!  You have the heavenly felicity to turn to the dreadful clemency of your governmental sponsors and say, what man having twelve sons will say to the eleven, sit you here on velvet cushions, in the midst of splendor and ease; and to the twelfth one, go you out–“you must raise no more wheat and corn at home,” leave for the mountains and deserts and hunt for your living among beasts and savages–and say I am just?  You, then, will help send light from this university to teach your brethren of the old homestead, better manners and more filial affection.

President Young and counselors, with the Twelve, Chancellor Spencer and Regents–ye are the fountainheads of truth, salvation, and light to this generation, and shall I say, in support of the position I have taken, proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord?–Yes! Yes, let the royal proclamation go forth to the four quarters of the globe, come rich men, come wise men, come great men, come all–yea, come to the feast of fat things which is preparing in the tops of the mountains, when the veil spread over all people will be removed; come ye–the spirit says come; the bridegroom says come; and we, as heralds of peace, say, come Asian; come European, come African; come American; bring your mites together; that when the Lord comes and turns unto us a “pure language”, we may all be one in love, light, liberty and union, preparing for [66] eternities of perfection and bliss with the Gods. (Des. News, July 26, 1851)


Oration by Daniel H. Wells

July 24, 1851


Friends and Brethren: Again has our national jubilee arrived, laden with the rich fruits of peace and industry, the summer harvest and greeting of our friends and brethren, gathering home into the valleys of the mountains.  Where, four years ago this day, was only heard the chirping of the cricket, the howling of the wolf, and the yell of the Indian; now the hum of industry and the voice of gladness have broken the spell; the silence of the eternal hills has departed, and the roaring of the cataract responds to the clattering mill.  The past!  The past!!  The history of the past rushes upon the mind with the remembrance of who we are and from whence we came; that like the mighty oak which has withstood the tornado of the Torrid Zion, dares to lift its head and behold the devastation spread around, we jostle each other to know that we are awake and have recourse to the mirror to know that it is us.

Let us look into the mirror of the past.

In that year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty, on the sixth day of April, the Church of Jesus Christ was organized at Manchester, Ontario County, New York, and consisted of six members.

Soon after this, they moved to Kirtland, Ohio, where, in the midst of opposition and bitter persecution, they continued to grow and increase, and proved that truth is mighty and powerful.

In 1834 the Church removed in what was called the camp of Zion into the State of Missouri.

In the winter of 1838-39, the Church was expelled from the State of Missouri, by a murderous mob, under the exterminating order of Governor Lilburn W. Boggs.

In the year 1844, on the 27th day of June, the mob of Illinois murdered in cold blood, the Prophet Joseph and Patriarch Hyrum Smith, while confined in jail under the guaranty of safety, and pledge of the Governor of Illinois, Thomas Ford.

[67]        In the fall of 1845, after permitting the mob to go on burning the houses of the saints for ten days, without raising a hand to defend themselves, the Church ventured to interpose the strong arm of power, the mob were dispersed, and in consequence thereof, the Church were compelled, in order to save themselves from impending destruction, to treat for their safety by flight into the wilderness.

In the following winter and spring of 1846, the church, in accordance with the provisions of said treaty, left their homes, and in the most inclement season of the year, amid storms of snow, with their families, crossed the ice of the Mississippi, and pursued their journey westward, not knowing where or when they should find a resting place.

In the same spring, while upon this toilsome march, the Government of the United States required a battalion of five hundred men to leave their families in this precarious situation, without money, provisions, or friends, other than the God whom they serve, to perform a campaign of over two thousand miles on foot, across trackless deserts and burning plains, to fight the battles of their country; even that country which had afforded them no protection from the ruthless ruffians who had plundered them of their property, robbed them of their rights, way-laid them in their peaceful habitations, and murdered them while under the safe-guards of their pledged faith.  That country that could have the barbarity, under such peculiar circumstances, to make such a requirement, could have no other object in view than to finish, by utter extermination, the work which had so ruthlessly begun.

The battalion marched.  The residue of the camp, in poverty, sickness, and death, remained in hovels, sheds, and wagons, on the banks of the Missouri.

While away upon this campaign, with scarcely a prospect of ever returning to the bosom of their families, or if they should happen to live to return, perhaps it would be only to find their families mouldering in an early grave–while thus away, the remnant, who, through poverty, had not been able to go away, were descended upon by the infuriated mob, who, thirsting for the blood of [68] the saints, were determined to slay them, rather than give them a chance to get away.  The wives, sisters, and children of the battalion were thus mobbed, plundered, and driven, while they were in the service of the United States.

In the spring of 1847, one hundred and forty-three men left the camp on Missouri’s dark and turbid waters, to find a place where a settlement could be made, where the church could rest in peace.  They arrived in the Valley of the Great Salt Lake on the 24th day of July, 1847, selected a location, broke ground, built a fort, put in seed, and returned to their families the same season; and the spring of the next ensuing year, 1848, found them together with their families on their way to their new location.

So much for history; and what a history to have transpired in a land of light and liberty, of enlightened freedom, celebrated for its intelligence, its benevolent institutions, general diffusion of knowledge, and just and equitable administration of justice.

Among all the anniversaries that might be celebrated, that the memory dwells upon with peculiar feelings of interest, of recollections dire, and deep fraught with every emotion to which the human heart is susceptible, this the 24th day of July, the anniversary of the arrival of the pioneers in this valley, has been selected as the dawning of a brighter day, as an era in the history of this people upon which turned the axis of their destiny.

Of the energy, perseverance, tact, endurance, sacrifices requisite for the accomplishment of such a task, I leave to be pictured forth by abler minds.  I also leave the history of the past, which treads upon the memory like the dying moans of the stormy canopy, still vivid with the lightning’s glare, and used in the happy present, which, like the calm summer of content, crowns our hearts with smiles, of beauty redolent with the rich fragrance of the summer harvest, the quiet enjoyment of peace, and in possession of freedom, the freedom of the key of the continent.  Here let a tribute of gratitude ascend to the great Jehovah who sits enthroned in the midst of His kingdoms, that He has turned our sadness into joy, our mourning into rejoicing, as it is this day.  We are now surrounded with the comforts, aye, the luxuries of life, and [69] permitted to enjoy the same in peace, safe from the midnight marauders, the bloody assassins, who so long sought our destruction and overthrow.

It has been thought by some that this people, abused, maltreated, insulted, robbed, plundered, murdered, and finally disfranchised and expatriated, would naturally feel repugnant to again unite their destiny with the American Republic, preferring rather to associate with the less refined, less enlightened, and less philanthropic, inasmuch as their superior intelligence appeared to be exercised to devise the most wanton, cruel, and dastardly means for the accomplishment of our ruin, overthrow, and utter extermination. No wonder then, that it was thought by some, that we would not again submit ourselves (even while we were yet scorned and ridiculed) to return to our allegiance to our native country.  Remember, it was by the act of our country, not ours, that we were expatriated, and then consider the opportunities we had of forming other ties.  Let this pass while we lift the veil and show the policy which dictated us.  That country, that constitution, those institutions were all ours–they are still ours.  Our fathers were heroes of the Revolution.  Under the master spirits of an Adams, a Jefferson, and a Washington, they declared and maintained their independence, and under the guidance of the spirit of truth they fulfilled their mission, whereunto they were sent from the presence of the Father.  Because demagogues had arisen and seized the reins of power, should we relinquish our interest in that country made dear to us by every tie of association and consanguinity?  Because of the momentary triumph of anarchy and confusion, of corruption, effeminacy, and the daring ascendancy of polluted politicians, who cannot refrain from desecrating the soil in which their fathers lie entombed, should we abandon those tombs?  Aye, more; their yet living representatives, and those sacred spots where our infancy learned to lisp their honored names–should we, for reasons such as these, wrap ourselves in the mantle of insulted rights, dignity, and pride, even though enclosing in our arms the innocent victims of treachery and blood-stained honor, and seek the overthrow of that government, of that country, of those institutions, whose only fault is the want [70] of good and faithful administrators, who dare, in the hour of their country’s peril, step forth and stem the torrent that threatens to engulf all in the widespread vortex of anarchy and reign.  Those who have indulged such sentiments concerning us, have not read Mormonism aright; for never, no never, will we desert our country’s cause; never will we be found arrayed by the side of her enemies, although she herself may cherish them in her own bosom.  Although she may launch forth the thunderbolts of war, which may return and spend their fury upon her own head, never, no never, will we permit the weakness of human nature to triumph over our love of country, our devotion to those institutions, handed down to us by our honored sires, made dear by a thousand tender recollections, although we feel the strong arm of oppression, and writhe under the keen cruelty of the tyrant’s rod; but rather stand aloof, while she welters under the withering curse of the Almighty Jehovah for the shedding of innocent blood; rather seek a shelter from the impending storm which no arm can stay, until she has received the full measure of the indignation of insulted innocence, the just demerit of all her crimes. Then will she consider the past; then will she see in the sad extremity to which she will be driven, the unrighteous course she has pursued towards us; then will she look to the poor defenseless Mormons whom she has murdered, persecuted, and driven; for succor.

Then will the Basin State, panoplied in the power of righteousness and truth, step forth to her country’s rescue.  Then will the patriotism of the saint shine forth, and the ship of state glide swiftly on in the pathway of honor and renown, emitting glory on all around, and being guided by those who are not ashamed to seek counsel from Him who is eternal, shed her beacon light to those who wander in darkness, extending her benign influence to earth’s remotest bounds.

But here we are in Deseret. I congratulate you, my friends, that after having sustained ourselves in our weakness, through perils, the severest perhaps that ever has fallen to the lot of any people, that now as we have begun to gather strength and power, our great National Father has seen proper to extend his protecting care. [71] Thanks, thanks, for the severest trial of all is yet to come, for verily in prosperity we have not hitherto been tried.

Our territory is about being organized–our officers are here, and if they should find that we vary in our views, in our sentiments and policy, from that to which they have been accustomed, they must remember that we have learned in the school of experience, in a school of adversity, to which we most sincerely hope that they nor us may hereafter be subjected.

We have before us the widespread domain of public lands, rich in natural resources, flowing with cool clear rivulets, a buoyant and life-inspiring atmosphere, where health invigorates, and nature’s sublimity exalts. We breathe the free pure air, drink of the free cool fountain, and cultivate the free earth in peace, and thank the Lord who hath in the abundance of His mercy vouchsafed unto us so goodly an heritage.  In prosperity, then, we shall be tried, and happy will it be for us if we shall have wisdom to appreciate the timely assistance of our friends to pass us through the fiery ordeal.  The influence of power is great, the influence of wealth is power, but the influence of intelligence is both wealth and power, and circumscribes in its circuit all other influences, telestial, terrestrial, and celestial, social, political, or divine. Happily may we pursue our course, if divesting ourselves of our traditions, prejudices, and ignorance, we shall be come the recipients of that intelligence whose foundation is God and whose destiny is eternity.

Friends, I will close.  If, in the retrospection of the past, I have adverted to incidents painful to consider and unpleasant in themselves, and although that nation or that people may have sealed their own damnation by the stern and unrelenting hand of persecution which they have held over us, yet, I wish it distinctly understood, that no true saints complain.  They have taken joyfully the spoiling of their goods and give glory to God for having the privilege of suffering for the cause of truth.  It is the path the Savior trod and all righteous men in all ages, and this people have ever been found equal to the emergency.  The spirit of wisdom and grace has been according to their day and generation.  They have sustained themselves under all circumstances, faithful to their God, and their faith, their [72] country and themselves.  And now, when the valleys of the mountains are spreading out before them the invitation to come and inhabit, may they never permit the engrossing cares of worldly interests to swerve them from the path of duty, neither to the right nor the left; but remember the Lord, who, as in the days of ancient Israel, brought us forth with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm; unto Him be glory and honor forever and ever, Amen. (Des. News, Aug. 19, 1851)


Remarks by Heber C. Kimball

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

July 27, 1851


I attended meeting.  We had a good day.  Brother Kimball addressed the meeting a part of the day.  Among other remarks he said Jesus Christ was the firstborn of the Father, and He was the candidate and elected to redeem the world. Lucifer set up as a candidate to run against Jesus Christ, but he was overcome and thrust down to hell with all that followed him.  And we will have no more division henceforth and forever in Israel.  We will have but one candidate for office but no opposition.  All will be elected and proven.  If a person is qualified to fill a greater station than he holds he will have a chance.  The Presidency and Twelve will fill in eternity those stations appointed them.  So with all men.  But I expect to remain on this earth until I am able to create a world of my own and people it.  The Lord has given us rich portions of the earth to inherit.  We have been driven from time to time from th[ere].  We now inherit a goodly land–the best land on the earth for vegetation, and it will be good for fruit and the people of the earth will yet come to us for fruit. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


An Address to the Saints Abroad

John Taylor

August 15, 1851


Beloved brethren:  At the commencement of this publication, I wish to address a few words to you.

[73]        The Lord has been pleased in his goodness and mercy to restore to the world the primitive gospel in all its simplicity, beauty and purity, as it formerly existed among the primitive Christians, during the days of Jesus and His Apostles.  In the midst of the darkness and degeneracy of men, at a time when the world was perplexed with a thousand conflicting opinions, the light of truth burst forth.

The wise, the learned, the pious, the philosopher, the legislator, the divine, and Christian have been in search of something to ameliorate the condition of man; but, notwithstanding, in the midst of their researches, and various plans, the world has continued unchanged and unregenerated; contention, trouble, perplexity and misery fill the earth, and every plan put into operation by man, to regenerate the world only exhibits more fully his folly and incompetency; and in spite of every effort, religiously, morally, and politically, the world is getting worse and worse.

If we trace carefully and minutely the dealings of God with the human family, we shall find that all these evils originate in the departure of the nations, and the world from God, and nothing but a return to Him can stop the mighty tempest, calm the roaring sea, still the unruly and wayward passions of man, and restore to the moral, religious, and political world that order which exists in the physical creation of God.

The works of creation are still as perfect as on the day they proceeded forth from His hands:  all creation is orderly, beautiful, and harmonious, being governed by the wisdom and power of God.  And if man had not abused that moral agency with which he has been entrusted; if he had not corrupted himself and become proud, and arrogant, and forsaken God; if he had sought for and obtained wisdom from that Being who sustains the orbs in their motions and regulates the universe; if he had copied after the beauty, order, harmony and innocence of nature; if he had yet been noble, magnanimous, virtuous, pure and good, dispensing to, and receiving blessings from all; being taught by his Father in heaven, and copying after His works, this world might still have been an Eden, a [74] Paradise, and man have stood in his place as the representative of God on the earth.

It is the religion that you have believed in and teach that is destined to restore the earth and men to their proper position, to lead men back to God; and out of this chaos that exists in the world, morally, religiously, and politically, to gather a people that shall be guided and acknowledged of God, that shall be honourable before men, and nations, and that shall assist in building up the kingdom of God in these last days.

Our religion is not a wild fantasy, as some have supposed, based upon some obscure vision or idle tale.  It is a revelation of God to us and the world.  It accords with every principle of reason, revelation, intelligence, and philosophy.  It is the restoration of the primitive gospel in all its purity, fulness, beauty, intelligence and power, and clothed in its native original simplicity.

An angel of God has appeared to Joseph Smith, and also to others associated with him; but angels also appeared to Abraham, Moses, Gideon, Zechariah, Joseph, Peter, Paul, James, John, Cornelius, and others.  And why not to people in this day?  An angel revealed to Joseph Smith the ancient annals of the aborigines of America; but we are not left to his testimony alone, for an angel confirmed also the same thing unto others who bear testimony to it.  Is it a thing very remarkable, that the Lord should reveal the history of millions upon millions of people; the inhabitants of that great continent whose ruins are living monuments of their intelligence and civilization?  Or must we be told that the Lord would or could only reveal Himself to a few people in Asia, and leave the rest of the world in darkness?  If these records be true, there will yet be other discoveries concerning the dealings of God with other people, that the world will be compelled to believe.  How did the world come into possession of any knowledge of God?  By revelation or through the scriptures which are given by revelation; and without revelation we must have been ignorant of God.  Who is there, then, that would shut the mouth of the Lord and tell us that He must not, and ought not again to communicate with man?  To be consistent, we must either say that He never has done it, or admit the probability of [75] His doing it again; for if we can believe that He ever has spoken to man, why not believe He will do the same thing now?

But we are told that there have been many impostors in the world.  True, but did an impostor ever come with the fulness and simplicity of the gospel?  We answer no, it cannot be shown.  John says:  “Whosoever transgresseth and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ hath not God.  He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ he hath both the Father and the Son.”  Now, where is the imposture associated with this gospel or with these records?  The gospel that we teach, and the gospel contained in these records is just the same in doctrines, ordinances, and blessings, as that contained in the Bible; and this record of a people on the continent of America is confirmatory of the Asiatic record.  Did the apostles in former days tell the people to “believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and repent of their sins?”  So do we.  Did they tell them to “be baptized in the name of Jesus for the remission of sins?”  So do we.  Did they lay on hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost?  So do we.  Did they believe in prophets, revelations, visions, healing the sick by the laying on of hands, through faith in Jesus?  So do we.  Had they the hope in the resurrection?  So do we.  Did they look for “the Second Advent and glorious appearing of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ?”  So do we.  Had they Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Teachers, and Evangelists?  So have we.  Had they gifts, tongues, interpretations, visions, governments, helps, etc?  So have we.  Did they practice the doctrines, precepts and example of Jesus Christ?  We also seek to do so; and we know that God has restored again these ancient blessings to His Church. What is there, we would ask, in all the above that is inconsistent?  Which is most inconsistent: to believe and practice the scriptures or to say we believe them and then deny them in our organizations, doctrines and works?

But are not visions, prophecies, and revelations, apt to lead to wildness and fanaticism?  Yes, the visions of men and delusions of Satan are.  But if the Lord had thought that His visions and revelations were injurious to the people, why did He give them in former days?  If they are injurious now, they certainly would have been then. [76] The wildness, folly, and fanaticism of men is one thing; and the Lord revealing His will to the people for their organization, stability, comfort, union, teaching, and edification, and for the establishment of His kingdom, another.

The principles that we believe in and teach, are in strict accordance with reason, revelation and philosophy.

Who made the earth and man?  If God did, has He not a right to govern and dictate, to instruct and teach?  Is it more reasonable that man, the image of God, destined to live here and hereafter, should remain in total blindness as it regards his present and future happiness, or that his Father should teach him those things? Has it indeed become degrading to acknowledge God?

Again, if we speak philosophically, what is it that can produce the greatest happiness to the human family?  Intelligence, virtue, purity, union and brotherhood.  And why is the world in its present unhappy, debased, corrupt, and unsettled state? It is for the lack of the pure principles of true philosophy, for the want of a philosophy and intelligence taking cognizance of the earth and heavens.  For God’s works, whether on the earth or in the heavens, spiritual or temporal, are all governed and controlled according to the strictest principles of philosophy; the philosophy of God, as manifested in the heavens and on the earth.  And if man has come to any wrong conclusions relative to the dealings of God, it is for want of a knowledge of God and of His laws, many of which can only be obtained through revelation.  But as all His laws that come within our cognizance are orderly and perfect, so are those which are not generally known.

Philosophers have sought in man, in the earth and in the works of creation, to find a true system.  They have each had their day; they have introduced many good principles, but so far as the amelioration of the world is concerned they have failed.  Their systems, however good many of them may have been, are not commensurate to the object:  “they have been weighed in the balance and found wanting.”

We believe in every true principle of philosophy, and then seek the wisdom of God to associate with it.  They search wisdom from the earth and the works of God; we [77] from His works and also from God the author.  They search the blessings of this earth; we, those of this and the next, a reward in time and in eternity.  If we possess any intelligence, we are not ashamed to own that God gives it.  If the Lord has given laws, we are not ashamed to observe them.  If Jesus went to John and demanded to be immersed in water, we are not ashamed to follow His steps.  If He appointed faith, repentance, and baptism, we are not ashamed to adopt the same plan.  If he appointed the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, we think it proper also; and if by the observance of those ordinances, they obtained the divine favor, and received a Spirit that “should lead them into all truth; bring things past to their remembrance, and show them of things to come”, we rejoice in his having discovered to us the way to obtain true intelligence, a knowledge of true principles, ancient and modern, of our relationship to God & the way to promote our happiness and the happiness of the world.

The world has run to two extremes in regard to religion; the one has made everything spiritual, aerial and visionary; they have become ascetic, morose, and superstitious, and have put unnatural bonds upon the human family.  While the other, to burst those restraints, have run into excesses, violated the laws of morality and virtue, neglected or denied God, and have sought in licentiousness, vanity, and the gratification of their lusts and passions, that happiness which alone can be obtained by virtue, moderation, purity and the fear of God.

Our religion is temporal, spiritual, and eternal.  It is adapted to both body and soul, for then we have both; and the God which made one also provided the other.  The object of the redemption is to save both body and soul; it affects us in time and will in eternity.  As men, we have to use our judgment, reason, and intelligence to obtain possessions, organize society, to labor, till the earth, sow, plant and reap, and provide for our families; as Christians, to seek from God wisdom to direct us in all things spiritual and temporal.  And as eternal beings, to act in this life in all things, with a reference to the next, that we may be honorable here and stand in our position with God in the eternal world, when our bodies and spirits shall be again united.

[78]        The Lord has given us revelations concerning both our temporal and spiritual affairs.  He has commenced to build up Zion and to establish His kingdom, and He will roll on His purposes, and fulfil the words of the prophets, and His work will roll forth until the designs of God shall be accomplished.

Let me say to the brethren, then, be virtuous, be pure, keep the commandments of God.  Pray to your Father in heaven for wisdom, grace, patience and meekness, that you may be examples of everything that is good, great, noble, and intelligent, that your light may shine before men.  Avoid political strife, and pray for the nations in which you reside, and their rulers, and imitate our Lord and Saviour in manifesting goodness and mercy, kindness, and benevolence to all.  In short, if there is anything good, praiseworthy, honorable and exalted; seek after these things, and the truth shall make you free; you shall be gathered in due time to Zion, and rejoice in the fulness of the blessings of the gospel of peace; you shall know how to enjoy this world, and how to obtain a knowledge of, and an inheritance in, the Celestial Kingdom of God. (Mill. Star, vol 13, pp. 241-244)


Notes on General Conference

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff) September 7, 1851


Our general conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints met in the tabernacle this day at 10 o’clock a.m., there being present of the First Presidency: Brigham Young, H.C. Kimball, and W. Richards; of the Quorum of the Twelve: Orson Hyde, Wilford Woodruff, G.A. Smith and E.T. Benson; the first seven presidents of the Seventies, with the other quorums and a large congregation of Saints.

President H.C. Kimball arose and said the conference was not for the benefit of one but for the whole.  Is the storehouse full of wheat?  Is the tithing butter and cheese brought in?  Some of you will ask, can I get my endowment? But I will say not one of you will get your endowments until you pay your tithing. Prayer by O. Hyde, then singing.

[79]        President Young arose and said, as far as you can exercise patience, you should do so.  We are in comfortable circumstances and now let us sit here and worship God and let our business rest and let us reflect a little and exercise ourselves in our religion.  Let our houses rest and farms and crops.  Let the people be still and not talk in the house or about the window.

In my meditations I am like other men who reflect, and I marvel to see men so intent upon objects that will so soon perish.  How many there are here who ask the question how long will this conference last?  I want to go.  I cannot stop.  And others will be willing to stop and worship God. Some spirits are like the troubled sea.  Uneasy.  If I could have my wish about it I would wish such spirits to pass out of our midst, leave the congregation and let us worship in peace.

We are such an industrious people that we could not commence conference until Sunday.  I care as little about our gardens, farms, lumber, etc., as you do about snuffing ashes.  If you get all the riches of the world, you cannot hold them.  If you will get the wisdom it is your privilege to possess, you will know that God cares more for you than the ravens.  If you seek the kingdom of God and its righteousness, the Lord will add all things else that are necessary.

Our first duty is to provide for our families, but we must take a course to accomplish it.  Fools are often rich and the wise in beggary.  This is the providence of God.  We may be ever so rich today.  We may be beggars tomorrow.  This is the case with those who are before me.

Let me draw the line between the good and evil.  Have you not had more good than evil–more than you would have if you had been in the world?  More peace than in the world and happiness in the meditation of the things of God than in the world?  Yes, you have.  Then shame on the man who complains of his hardship.  The worst persecutions of the people are their best days. I went to Mo. in 1834.  Walked 2,000 miles in 70 days.  Was so weak I could not step over the fence 3 feet high.  I now have better health and strength than ever before. I would give all Geaugo County for the experience I have had in 6 months.  Now stay here.  Don’t go home until conference ends.

[80]        Many of the saints [forget?] Mormonism.  Anybody who enjoys the light of the revelations of Jesus Christ must have the spirit of God.  The key to Mormonism is all the truths in all eternity that were ever revealed or ever will be that exist with God, angels or men.  Where shall I go to find truth? In Mormonism.  If you get a truth anywhere, it is there–as that covers all truth.  When the light came to me, sin did not revive in me, and I died but I revived and lived.  I had not consented to the death of any good man like Stephen as Paul did.  But let him come to any of the churches reared in honour to his name and the world would kill him if they could.  I will ask you, are you accepted of the Father and Son? You will say I don’t know.  Well, it is because your minds are taken up with the things of the world.  Then let us stay here until we do know.

I am a Mormon, or what is called so, and I know that Joseph was a prophet.  It was revealed to me long before his death.  I always thought while reading the Bible about a prophet that I would go around the world to see one or any man who knew things as they were and not have to guess at them.  All things will have to bow to Mormonism or eternal light and truth.  We have the true government of all the earth.  I know the path this people have to walk.  I am prepared for Mormonism.  There was no better man than Joseph Smith ever lived on the earth.  Hear it, O ye heavens and earth and all men. This is my testimony–that he is as good a man as ever lived save Jesus.  The world will not vote for a man because his religion governs.  They will not have God govern them because of their cursed meanness.  But if God did not or cannot deal out justice and rule in righteousness, who can?

E.T. Benson spoke to edification.  Said some bore record of the things of God as they were revealed to them.  Others believe on their testimony.  The servants of God bind and seal on earth and it is bound and sealed in heaven.  I bear testimony that we have a prophet that will hold the keys of the Kingdom of God through all eternity, also a patriarch.  Both have sealed their testimony with their blood for the cause and Kingdom of God.  Mormonism is true and the keys of the Kingdom of God are with you.  The presidency of the church who now live with us are righteous men; the Twelve, High Priests, High Council, [81] Seventies, and Elders of Israel are righteous men.  Joseph said we went into the little end of the horn and came out of the big end of the horn.  Anything is ours if we are faithful and do the will of the Lord.

  1. Hyde took the floor and said this is one of the happiest periods of my life. The testimony of all is good.  If the brethren who have spoken have broken a clean load, still I may gather a few crumbs.  We are living in the most important age and when the greatest events are to take place.  Everything is on the move.  The testimony of this work will go through the earth and the Lord will arise out of His hiding place and reign King of nations as He does now King of Saints.  This would destroy all the governments of the earth.

Do the Latter-day Saints wish the nations of the earth any evil?  No, we would save them all if we could.  But it was a mercy anciently to cut off the wicked from the earth that their posterity should not inherit the earth to follow the wickedness of their fathers.  Gog and Magog will ere long gather to fight against the Saints of the Lamb of God.  And when hope is almost fled, Christ will come and end the scenery.

If a prophet has been schooled in the society of the Gods to come to the earth as a prophet to do a work for the Kingdom, he has the power of God with him to help him do it the same as we ordain a man to build a county where we cannot go.  So when a prophet comes, he comes holding the keys of the kingdom of God and binds and seals on earth that which is bound and sealed in heaven.

G.A. Smith arose and said if I did not know the truth, I should not have taken the pains I have to preach it to the world and act the part I have in it.  But I know that God has sent a prophet to us and ordained a priesthood and set up His kingdom on earth. And a religion that is not everything is nothing.

Jesus broke bread and said eat in remembrance of me and this do until I come and always remember me.  When Joseph was murdered, the piety of the people did not oppose his murder.  When they arise, will it be with white robes?  No, but with garments spotted with blood of the prophets.  None on the earth had sympathy but the Saints.

[82]        I have been spending a time to build up a stake in the wilderness.  Why is it we have been driven to these valleys of the mountains?  Is it not that we may be sheltered when the judgments of God comes on Babylon?  A man should not be so taken up with his farm as to forget his work.  Some will say I have done so much for the church that I must now do something for myself.  There are now many in Jackson Co. who are waiting for the saints to come there but they will not get the blessings.  Those will who have come to the Salt Lake Valley.  This is the best way to heaven.  Some want to go to California to get rich.  I want men to go with me who want to go to meeting and reproof and kiss the rod.  I had such men with me and we did well.  I bear testimony that God is with this people.

  1. Woodruff addressed the meeting and said he was much interested and edified in the testimony which had been born by the Presidency and Twelve and those who had spoken. President Young had borne testimony that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God.  He was well qualified to bear testimony of him.  He has been with him day and night in his public and private councils.  He knows his life and he has followed close in his footsteps.  He always loved him and [had] he have been in Nauvoo at the time of his arrest, he would have stove the barn doors into kindling wood with his fist if he could not have liberated him any other way.

There is something interesting in the testimony of men.  The ancients were martyred for the testimony which they held which they bore of Jesus Christ.  So men in this day are opposed for their testimony.  But I know Joseph Smith was a prophet of God.  So is Brigham Young.  The mantle of Joseph rested upon him, and he has power to lead this people, and my soul is filled with joy when he stands here and speaks the word of the Lord and brings forth the glorious things of the Kingdom of God.

President Young said I read that when the wicked rule the people mourn.  Ask the world do the wicked rule?  Yes and they mourn.  Do they seek a righteous man to rule?  No.  If the curse has followed, the rule of the wicked will follow, but let them sleep on and take your rest.  But we understand the Lord has rent the veil, sent angels to us, and the gospel to preach to the poor.  The difference [83] between us and the world is they say but do not nor believe not.  We say I both believe and do.  The world spend thousands of dollars to preach the gospel but do not believe it.  When the judgments of God rest upon the wicked and they are cut off, then will be the harvesting(?) of grapes after the vintage is done.

Let the righteous reign and the righteous will rejoice in the house of Israel.  God takes up the isles as a little thing builds up and pulls down at His pleasure, and why are not the people willing He should reign?  Because of their meanness.  Some may ask, do not good men reign? I will ask a question.  Should an angel come to President Fillmore and tell him how to govern the nation and he was to tell of it, they would shut him up in a mad house.  And if God was to reveal to him truth concerning the people and he was to tell of it the people would kill him.  This is the situation of this government, the best on earth.  But let the president swear and take the name of God in vain and curse God i[n a]ll its form, [and] they would let him stay with them as hell fellows well met. And the nations will be damned and go to hell.

Who killed Joseph?  The state of Illinois in connection with the Carthage mob and the whole government sustained it, and they will be damned from the president to the least member.  I think no more of a king or president than of the poorest beggar.  The worst scoundrel is the most popular man in the nation.  This nation is the first the gospel was sent unto.  She has killed the prophets that God sent unto them, and their doom will be the nethermost hell.

  1. Richards says we have had much testimony today. I will add a few words.  When Hyrum Smith fell in Carthage Jail and exclaimed I am a dead man, then Joseph Smith fell dead; John Taylor fell wounded.  I carried him to another part of the jail and covered him up.  I walked out before the people and said that Joseph and Hyrum who lay before me slain were two of the best men that ever lived.  Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and Hyrum a patriarch.  Two better men never lived.  Two better men God never made.  Joseph was a prophet.  Brigham is as great a prophet, and he that believeth it [84] may be saved, and he that believeth it not will be damned. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)

Notes by Wilford Woodruff, including Remarks by Judge Brochus

with Response by Brigham Young

September 8, 1851


Judge Brochus requested the privilege of addressing the people.  It was granted him.  He arose and commenced his speech by testifying of his kind reception among this people.  He had been sick among them and been kindly treated.  The flies had been brushed from his face by a lady and he was thankful.  He referred to the Judiciary.  Requested the people to sustain it, and professed to be very sorry that he was going to leave it.  He then referred to a report in circulation that he came here for the purpose of being returned a delegate to Washington and other things that were reported against him, etc.

He then took up the subject of his appointment and said that President Fillmore had appointed him although he was a Democrat and said he should not have received his appointment had he not been a capable, virtuous, good man.  He then addressed the ladies upon the subject of the Washington Monument.  Wished them to procure a block of marble and present it to Washington.  Also wished them to donate for the building of the monument.  Talked much about the virtues of Washington and his battles and good deeds.

He spoke of the persecution of the saints.  Considered them badly treated.  Sent to Winter Quarters where our dead was buried and had a sprig of Myrtle plucked.  He carried it in his bosom.  It was not dried up.  He showed it to the congregation.

In speaking to the ladies, said he hoped they would become a virtuous people.  He did not wish them to send the block of marble unless they could do it in full fellowship with each of the separate states composing the United States.  He had read some things casting reflections upon the United States government concerning our persecutions.  But he would defend the government as long as he had a tongue to speak or hand to lift, and said the [85] government could not do anything for us as they had no power.  But if we wanted redress for our wrongs, apply to Missouri and Illinois where we had received our [wrongs]. (This part of the speech stirred the blood of the whole congregation.)  Much was said by the speaker which was calculated to stir the blood of the people and offend them.  He then closed.

President Young arose and said the Judge Brochus was either profoundly ignorant or willfully wicked in presenting some sentiments which he had to the assembly today, and had he have supposed for a moment that he was going to throw out a challenge upon that stand in a religious meeting and present such sentiments as he had, he should not for a moment have given his consent to have had him speak on that occasion.  He said several stood by and wished to take up the challenge given by the Judge but he would not permit of it for some might get their hair pulled if not their throats cut and he would not have it.  He wished the meeting adjourned and to meet in the afternoon and transact business in the capacity of a conference for which the meeting was called.  Meeting adjourned one hour.

Met according to adjournment.  After singing and prayer, Brother Kempton addressed the meeting.  Was followed by Br. Gifford. Br. John Young next addressed the house and was followed by H.C. Kimball, who said I will tell one thing that will have a great effect upon us.  [We] will remove the mist when we come to the house of the Lord.  Bring an offering to the Lord.  I will make an offering to the Lord and to the priesthood as Abraham did to Melchizedec and offer the best you have.  [And] this law came from Joseph who was ordained under the hands of Peter.  Brigham Young was ordained under the hands of Joseph to hold the keys of the Kingdom of God.  If you strike against him, you strike against God who sent him.  The judges came here to judge criminals, not to judge us who keep the law.  He then sat down and we had a song from the Welch brethren.

President Young then arose and said I will speak of principle.  You may think it is a novel conference.  How long has it been since we have had the privilege of [86] spending a conference undisturbed?  A long time.  I would like to hear Br. Kempton speak or any good man.

I will preach Br. Abbott’s funeral sermon and the funeral sermon of all the faithful.  His body is laid in the dust to rest until the resurrection; forever blessed is the man that lives and dies a saint.

I will tell whether the messenger sent to Brother Kempton was of God or the devil. If the messenger sent was of God, he would know it. If the messenger was anywhere else but here, he must have come from heaven or from another hell for we are in hell.  Go to the world and preach the gospel.  You will find some people as honest and good as angels as far as they know.  But do they have revelations from God and know the things of God?  No, they do not.  If Brother Kempton has had his sins forgiven and remitted without baptism so could all men.  But this is false, for no man could have forgiveness without the shedding of blood and baptism.  The Bible says unless you keep the commandments, you cannot be saved.  When Br. Kempton says he knows his sins were forgiven before he was baptized, he doesn’t know what he says.  At times the spirit of God is given to men to see the Kingdom of God, and they think they are in it when they have entered the door of baptism.

Don’t go and call the different denominations because their sins are not forgiven them that they are always going to dwell in hell.  For if they were honest, they will have a glory greater than many who carry the gospel to men.  There is as good people among all sects, Gentiles, Jews, and heathen, as there is on earth.  They act according to the best light they have.

What is the condemnation of this government?  Light has come into the world and men love darkness rather than light.  They reject that light, fight the prophets, and shed their blood.  For this they are damned.

Elder Sherwood arose and said that the Priesthood has made Joseph, Brigham, and all men what they were by the assistance of light and truth.  As far as we follow light and truth, so far we shall approximate towards light and truth and God.  If God and angels were made what they are by truth as far as we learn that truth and follow the counsel of it, so far he will be like God; and when he [87] leaves that truth, he goes into darkness and misery. If the United States were practicing truth, they would be very different from what they now are.  The practice of right things makes men rejoice.  The practice of evil things makes sorrow.  We are agents to do right and wrong.  If a man feels disposed to go to hell, he has a right to.  It is no man’s business.  He goes on his own responsibility and agency.  So if he wishes to go to heaven, he has a right to by keeping a celestial law [_________] do my work to acceptance.  We know many truths we cannot think off.  Adjourned until 2 o’clock.

Met according to adjournment.  The officers of the Church were presented to the assembly and accepted in the following order: Presidency, Twelve, President of the Stake, Patriarch, High Council, High Priest, Seventies, Bishops, Elders, Priests, Teachers and Deacons, Perpetual Emigrating Company and Historian, Building Committee.

President Young says I want to establish some travelling Bishops, a thing that we never have done.  When I approach the subject of the Bishops, I pause not with a trembling hand, but I want to take time and look at it all day until we can see clearer than we now do.  This people still stick to the world, love the world.  We should [live in?] the world and not worship it.  No man is free indeed until he is free in Christ and above the world.  Don’t worship the world.  You will not be f[ree].

Is there any one that has anything but what God gave him?  You cannot make one hair white or black.  Now it is our duty to feed, clothe, and sustain the families of the those who are in the vineyard preaching.  If we let them suffer and they die their blood will be required at our hands.  We as a people have never done it yet.  But it was time it was done.  The Bishops are reproved.  They don’t do their duty.

N.H. Felt and John Banks were ordained travelling Bishops.  E.T. Benson, J.M. Grant, and O. Hyde were set apart to go to Kanesville and gather out all the saints in that region of country.  Samuel Richards was appointed to go to England.  Willard Snow and A.O. Smoot were appointed to go to England, D. Carnes to Germany, Dorr P. Curtiss and Venson Shirtliff on a foreign mission; Dr. [88] Donyan to preach in the eastern states.  Clayton then read an account of the tithing.

The Patriarch, John Smith, said, I rejoice to have the privilege of speaking to you.  I have been in the work since Jan. 1832, and am about the oldest man here.  I was ordained an Elder under the hands of Joseph Wakefield.  The Smith family was chosen to bring forth this work.  My team hauled the first load of stone to build the Kirtland temple.  My son, George, drove the team.  There were 4 brothers [of] us on the stand in Kirtland.  I am now left alone.  I was in jail with Joseph and Hyrum the night before they were killed.  Next day 3 guns were snapped at me.  I could not weep for a long time.  When I did weep, I wept much.  I have laboured much from that [day] until this to keep things right.  It is the little foxes that spoil the vines.  We have a prophet for a leader; now pay your tithe and make good measure when you sell anything, and fulfill all your covenants; if made right, we shall then prosper in this valley.  I am an old man and cannot say much, but I will write a record to be published in the paper.

H.C. Kimball said I am going to make an offering to President Young.  Abram paid tithes to Melchizedec.  A certain woman gave a purse.  Others filled it.  Br. Rhodes gave the President sixty four pounds of gold for the public works.  He has not lacked anything.  You should give the best you have to the Lord and he will pour you out a blessing that there will not be room to receive it.

Bishop Edward Hunter spoke.  Said he was appointed the Chief Bishop.  Was thankful for the confidence put in him.  I want to bear my testimony of the things of God.  He spoke of his experience.  Wanted to know his duty and was ready to do it.

  1. W. Phelps spoke. Took for a text “Pay Your Tithing.”  Brother Chase speaks [right].  Start right, keep right, and then you will come out right.  He spoke well upon tithing.
  2. Pulsipher spoke and said I feel thankful to hear the aged brethren speak and bear their testimony of the Prophet Joseph. We have had many revelations.  Let us improve upon them.

[89]        B. Young said I will put the motion.  Will the sisters vote to quit using tea and coffee?  The brethren have voted not to use tobacco.

I will speak of the Bishops.  I spoke of them yesterday, and reproved them sharply.  Some wanted me to offer an apology to them.  I will not.  I will see them in hell before I will do it.  If this people do not do better than the Bishops have, they will [go to hell]; and if you do not do better than you have done, you will go to hell.

I will begin with myself.  I have taught the Bishops principle and their duty.  Ask them if they can do it.  No.  I will cut the Bishops off from the church if they do not do better.  Did I ever counsel them wrong? You have trampled my counsel under foot.

I shall not shrink from duty.  I say to all, old and young, learn to pray.  Pray in your families.  Be content in all circumstances where the Lord shall place you.  Cease your contention one with another.  Never go to law.  Gather your families together and pray for me and my brethren and yourselves until a blessing r[ains upon] us.

Noah Packard spoke.  Said many things.  Said he wanted to be a son of thunder.  E.D. Woolley addressed the meeting.  Made many good remarks.  Said we had a Joseph with us in the person of Brigham Young.

Brigham Young wished to say a few words to the Mormon Battalion.  Those who are wanting their extra pay are applying to [Will?]iam Blair and Babbit.  If you apply to these men and give them the papers and they cheat you out of it, don’t complain, and say to those men not to take any papers from those who have had their pay or sold their claims to others.  If you want your pay, apply here, and you can get it.  You did not enlist to get $8 per [–].  They enlisted us to kill us, and because we speak our sentiments we are accused of treason.  I don’t ask any odds of the United States.  I will express my feelings.  To drive us from our millions and possessions, then require us to fight their battles is not right.

I shall pay my tithing.  The Twelve will pay one-tenth of their possess[ions] and the Bishops and all will pay their tithing.  This is the Kingdom of God, and if it falls, I am willing to fall with it.  I had rather fall than stand if [90] the priesthood falls.  All covenanted to pay their tithing, one-tenth of all they possess.

Bishop Hunter spoke upon the tithing.  Would begin with himself and wished all the Bishops to do the same.  Lorenzo Young spoke upon the tithing.

President Young said he wished all the people to pay their tithing to the Bishops of their ward.  He referred to the remarks made by Father Smith on the word of wisdom.  He said $50,000 had been spent in the valley during the past year for needless things–for coffee, tea, tobacco, etc.  Many other remarks were made by President Young.

Elder Banks spoke upon the law of liberty.  President Young followed in reply and said the liberty of the Holy Gospel was peace and righteousness.  We had no liberty to take away another man’s rights, but the first principle of liberty was resignation and submission; for go where you will–to heaven or hell–you have to submit to laws.  We are at liberty to adopt every holy principle to all eternity.  Go east, north, or south; keep everything you want for yourself–wife, children, houses, cattle–and create out of the elements everything you can, yet you are not at liberty to infringe upon the rights of men.  You may have the privilege to do all things that are done in heaven: organize the elements, give commands, and rule over kingdoms, but be subject to such laws as you are under. The law of liberty is to do right for God to all eternity.

The opposite principle is to be discontented with things [wanting them] to be different from what they are.  This is hell and all the hell there is.  I don’t care how things are.  If I do right, we shall find the law of liberty to be eternal life, light and peace, which will increase to all eternity.  We ought not to do an evil to cause pain to any creature.  Still there are some things that would appear to be evil [that] I know to be good–to cut some men’s heads off as it would be the only way they could be saved.

God will increase His Kingdom to all eternity.  So shall we increase our kingdom to all eternity. Abraham’s seed will reign as kings of kings and lords of lords, and to his seed there is no end.  Let this people live to do right and the blessings of God will attend you to all eternity. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


[91]                       General Conference Notes

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

October 5, 1851


Elder O. Pratt addressed the assembly and said, I feel thankful to once more tred my feet in the valley after being absent 4 years.  I feel thankful to behold the faces of my brethren and friends and see the improvements that have been made in my absence.  I could not tell where I was.  I was in danger of being lost without a guide.  I trust that while I have been absent on a mission to Great Britain, I have also been assisting to build up the Kingdom of God, and when I left I believed it would continue to roll forth.  The work had taken such a deep root, the powers of darkness could not break it up.  It seemed at times as though [we] should take the kingdom.  The organization of the Church by the Twelve in that country was so perfect that notwithstanding the great spread and increase of the work, we can know monthly the state of the ChurchÕs increase, etc., throughout the whole realm.  The faith of the saints in that land was increasing.  A great spirit of inquiry was manifesting itself in the high ranks of society, especially when they hear of the rapid progress of the work and prosperity of this people.

We are not hid up as some suppose.  It is the general idea that we are destined to become a great people and a mighty nation.  (Is this treason?)  We are a strong people and destined to be stronger until our news reaches the utmost parts of the earth, so that when the mail comes, the question will be asked what news do you hear from the mighty people in the mountains?  As the emigration increases and ships arrive, it will all increase the work and it will be as impossible to hide it from the world as it would for the shining of the sun to be hid, and Zion will be terrible to the nations of the earth.

I feel as great a desire to help bear off the kingdom as a man can.  I am willing to spend my life and all I have to build up this kingdom.  I am willing to stay here or go back tomorrow.  I presume this is the feelings of the Elders here in this body.  There is nothing so joyful as to build up the kingdom.  I would rather be abroad binding up the grain than to break up my farm.  If I had all the wealth of the [92] earth, I would rather go without purse or scrip than to spend the time to work for myself.  When I look at the magnitude of this work, I cannot feel otherwise with the spirit of God in my heart.  I want to see the Seventies going forth and gathering from all kingdoms and countries and from every island of the sea until all Israel is gathered.

I do not feel to say more today, but will sit down and hear from my brethren.  I wish to do my duty while here.

G.A. Smith said it is with pleasure I behold the faces of O. Pratt and others.  This is my father’s house.  We have had good instruction from our brother here.  I have spent my time to settle other colonies.  We cannot all settle here.  We should spend our lives to improve and prepare ourselves for immortal glory and exaltation.  I have exhorted my newcomers to go down to the south before they settle here and help to build up a stake.  If you remember the words of God in the days of Joseph says ye are laying the foundation of a great work and ye know it not.  We are now preparing to have a state soon.  Soon the brethren will come by 10, 100, 1,000 and 10,000.  We have at Parowan 80 men and boys.  We want to have every man who knows anything about making iron, go to Iron Co. and make iron.  As long as we have to buy everything and pay 3 prices for it, we shall be poor.  I would rather make our own ware and ploughs than to be a slave to Missouri or Illinois.

I never dreamed that when I or an Elder had a mission to preach the gospel or build up Zion, to ask to be dismissed or return home until my work was closed.  Such an idea never entered my brain.  If the Saints will scatter abroad and settle these far valleys, we can come up here and present our tithings and offerings, and come and worship as they did in Jerusalem.  Come and raise 1,000 bushels of wheat and potatoes and say to the nations of the earth, come and eat and do something to build up Zion.

Afternoon.  President Young says we hear the brethren arise and return thanks for the blessings received.  We can respond to it.  The work is of all importance to the human family.  The brethren are all willing to do right and they say, “Lord, not my will but [93] Thine be done.”  If the Lord should say, come and preach to us, we would say Amen to it.  The Lord has His means to carry on His work and also His own means to do it; when the people’s hearts are prepared to do the will of God, the victory is ours, if we come to an understanding so as to have the organization of the Kingdom of God, so that every one acts in unison like a beautiful piece of machinery.  [When] we gain the victory, we shall then know how to order our speech and conversation aright before God. This is a good people.  Cannot we be better?  We have faith and knowledge. Cannot we have more of it?  Yes, there is an eternity of it.  We have learned to obey by the things we suffer but what do we behold?  There is evil surmising, speaking, and doing.  The evil intruder has not left us.

Who is keeping this commandment:  he that loves his neighbor as he does himself will save his neighbor’s garden and crops, etc.?  We shall then believe and practice all the commands.  We shall have one common interest.  I don’t care what you believe if you practice right and act as though you love the Lord, then you will do right.  There is no school like your own experience.

When I heard George A. Smith speak, I thought of former days when men from Canada and other places [would] stop 50 miles this side of Kirtland, leave the money with the wife, go and see Joseph, and say how I love you.  But let Joseph ask him for a few dollars, and they would instantly dodge at it.  While in the world you would go away.  Now you are here I cannot get you to go to the far valleys because water and earth[age?] are not there.

I felt like crying about Amasa Company.  They were ready to go to hell.  How ready the people are to go to hell!  Let the eyes of the saints be opened.  I had to plead with A. Lyman and Company for days not to go.  I could not stay them.  Now I want you to go and you won’t go.  I want to have you go to Iron Co.  The people here are so full of wheat and good things that they loath it.

If you don’t want to pay your tithing, the Lord doesn’t want your tithing until you go into hell.  If you don’t want to save yourself nor your child nor your dead, don’t pay your tithing.  If you do want to save them, pay your tithing for it is for your benefit not mine.  You cannot [94] do the Lord any good in it or add to his glory, but it is for yourself.  The cattle have come in well of late and I think the best has been sent in.

You should be industrious and saving.  I don’t want my child to be lazy.  If I die, I don’t want any man to foster [them in] idleness.  Make your cloth yourself.  I wish my boys had to work as I did for a living.  (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


General Conference Notes

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

October 6, 1851


Conference assembled according to adjournment.  Singing and prayer by W.W. Phelps.  President Young said the time had come to commence the business of the semiannual conference.  The business of the last conference was productive of more good than any conference ever held.

The keeping of the word of wisdom has done much good.  I will be exceeding glad when we arrive at wisdom in all things.  The word of wisdom was given in Kirtland 20 years ago for the benefit of all saints. When we live 20 or 50 years longer, we shall see that we do not understand much of the word of wisdom.  We are but babes in understanding wisdom.  Who understands it?  Was all spoken that might be spoken?  There is but one system of explaining any revelation and that is the revelation of Jesus Christ in the heart of man when he possesses the Holy Ghost.  We are forbidden to use meat in hot weather.  Hot drinks and tobacco are not good for man.  You should not eat to overload your stomach.  There is a greater lack in my system of wisdom of tempering my food and exercise than in eating meat or tobacco.

Tithing is coming in so fast there will not be room to receive it.

I wanted this conference to come together so I could see their faces, not to scold them.  I want to see their faces.  They look better to me than all the glories of the earth.  I said when the brethren got out of prison, I wanted to sit and look at them three weeks.

[95]        Our granaries and storehouse are full of wheat and good things.  If this people are rich, beautiful, and happy, I am with them.  If they are miserable, I am still with them.  If the people are not all crowned and saved, none of us will be.  It is in vain for one man to build himself up and neglect his brother’s interest.  He will fail in it.

We must begin to manufacture all we want or we are slaves to everything in all the earth.  Everything is against Mormonism and Mormonism is against everything.  Everything is against us.  Hear it, O earth, for the Kingdom of God is against all earth and hell.  This is true and we shall fight them until the kingdom of this world becomes the kingdom of our God.  We shall fight battle after battle until the victory is won; we have to fight and lay down our lives for Christ’s sake.

We now want to gather companies to go to the different valleys.  I want the potters to rem[ain] here and work at their business.  Jesus descended below all things before he ascended above all things.  We have got to sacrifice freely in order to be exalted before God.  I once said I will go and build me a house on the hill out of the mud.  Joseph said you will stay where you are. This was enough.  I dodged as quick as I could.  I said enough.  Since [then] I have been willing to be governed by circumstances that have surrounded me and leave the event in the hands of God.

Judge Snow said I arrived in the valley in July [–].  I expected to sit and hear and learn.  I have been a silent observer of your temporal and spiritual matters.  Your Governor has laid a foundation for you to build upon.  I consider it to be a province of this people to determine for themselves what they most need.  I do not see that you will break any law of God in doing right and your own will.  I like the remarks made that you be free and not abject slaves.  Make what you want and be free.  Buy all you want and be slaves.  We say we look to God and do His will.  We are a little people upon a little patch of the earth, but if we all pull together we shall become the head.  I did not run with the rest because I thought it right to stay.  If I thought it right to run, I should run, but it was right to stay.  So you must be right.

[96]        The Lord said you must gain your bread by the sweat of the brow.  You must make your own leather or you cannot get money enough to buy it with. So with tea, coffee and sugar.  You must raise and make it or go without it.  You must make your own iron or fail, for iron must be had.  Leather and iron must be made and make your own clothing.

I like your conferences and to hear the best men speak to communicate intelligence to others.  The Church all draws one way and this puzzles the world.  They all draw one way and have a reason for it.  This I glory in.  I would not obey if there was not a reason for it.  I would leave.  Br. Snow would not draw with you if he could not give a reason for it.

I came here to deal out justice to all Jews and Gentiles alike.  I came not to watch for iniquity but to punish iniquity when it does appear.  I have had 200 cases in a year with the same No (?) as you are.  I hope you will not have a case.  You will never be destroyed unless you destroy yourselves.  If you do not war with yourselves, I hope others will not war with you.

  1. Young said at our conference we appointed Felt and Banks to be travelling Bishops to visit other Bishops to call them to an account and see that they are faithful Bishops; and you should feed the poor and do your duty until the spirit of God rests upon you and you hold the keys of the Melchizedec Priesthood of the eternal God and the power of it rests upon you forever. Brothers Banks and Felt were ordained under the hands of the Presidency.

Afternoon prayer by A. Cordon.  H.C. Kimball says A. Cordon is nominated to be a travelling [Bishop].  Carried unanimously.  He was ordained under the hands of HCK, John & G.A. Smith.  Heber C. Kimball sealed upon his head all the keys of the priesthood.  Said the power of God should rest upon his head to preside over other Bishops.  Another thing is necessary which will effect the whole world.  That is a reformation.  Choose men who are filled with the Holy Ghost to go forth as missionaries to stir up the feelings of the Saints in all these valleys of the mountains.  I thank God that we are free.

Joseph Young, D. Fulmer and Z. Pulsipher were appointed as missionaries.

[97]        G.A. Smith arose and said I feel perfectly at home here.  I want to speak concerning Iron Co.  I had but 20 or 30 with me there.  President Young w[anted] John D. Lee to get a company to go over the rim of the basin and form a settlement in a good place for wine, fruit and corn.  I asked some of Amasa Company what they were going to do.  They said they were going to plant a vineyard.  If they had done it there, they would have done good.

You should go to Iron Co., settle your families, then go down in the winter and build a fort.  The Indians there are well supplied with arrows.  It is poorer than Iron Co.  It borders upon the Great Sahara Desert.  I felt that we are free when I heard that iron and coal were found in abundance within 15 miles of each other in Iron Co.  We have not the great blast furnaces that are in the world but must begin with the native element.

  1. Young made remarks concerning education of our children. Wished parents to pay particular attention to [teaching] the children, after which the conference was closed.  It was one of the most interesting conferences ever held by this people. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Address by Orson Pratt

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

November 9, 1851


  1. Pratt addressed the assembly and said he did not believe any man capable or qualified to speak acceptable to God no matter what his abilities were unless he had the spirit of the Holy Ghost. He would not take any office on earth.  If the office of the President of the United States was offered him he would disdain it.  As far as the honor of it was concerned, he would rather have the office of a teacher in this Church as it would last forever, while the office of President of the United States would not last but 4 or 8 years.  I should be glad to live to see the day when there should not be a kingdom or government on earth, only that ordained of God to govern the world.  I do not know as I shall live to see it, but I have much desired it.  For a man to desire to live merely to get honor to himself would not be right.  But for him to desire to live to honor God and build up His kingdom would be a good desire.

[98]        If I knew I could be translated to all the glory of the Celestial Kingdom in an instant, I would rather live and suffer with my brethren through all their troubles until the coming of Christ.  I am sorry to see the old veterans who have helped to lay the foundation of this church lay their bodies in the grave.  I believe many will live, those who have had it promised unto them if they remain faithful until the coming of Christ and help build up the kingdom.  This has been promised to me by the patriarch and prophet while receiving my endowment.  The hearts of men were inspired upon our heads. This always stimulates us to hold on by faith when death is around us and slays thousands upon our right and left hand.

It is an easy matter for God to strengthen a man in his tabernacle in the midst of death and plagues all around him.  He did the ancients who lived to a great age.  Their eyes were not dim, their ears were quick to hear.  But we all have weaknesses and much to contend with.  This is that we may increase and arrive at great glory by getting the mastery over the devil and much evil.  If we were not tempted and tried and overcome, we should not get the glory that we otherwise shall.  How could God trust a man who would be overcome by temptation?  It would take him a long time to get confidence in him again. Jesus was a fair sample subject as he was [subjected] to temptation in all things. He overcame. So can we and follow in the steps of our elder brother. Better to do this than to enjoy the pleasure of sin for a season, then die as the fool dieth.

If a man had power given him and had not discretion given him to use it, he would ruin himself.  This is the reason why this people 20 years old has not greater power.  They have not wisdom to use it.  We have the gifts of the gospel to heal the sick, to speak with new tongues, to cause the blind to see, lame to walk, deaf to hear, and cast out devils, and with these gifts some have been so lifted up, taken honor and glory unto themselves, they have fallen.

I thank God for sparing His gifts any further than they prove beneficial to us. If God gave us all things at once, it would kill us; but if we were proven in all things, then we could endure all things.  Things are frequently given of the Lord that men cannot all endure.  They are [99] more than they have wisdom to manage.  When this is the case, they cannot advance until they master what has been given.  Let this be remembered and not ask for more than what we can manage, for if we ask the Lord for a revelation and He gives us a new commandment, we are under the greater responsibility, for we have to keep all commandments of God. If commandments are given us and we don’t obey, then our light becomes darkness.  Then how great is that darkness! It would be better for him not to have the light at all.

If the Lord had given all men all they have asked for, they would many of them been out of the Church now.  I have heard many say I have asked the Lord to reveal certain principles unto me and He did not do it.  But this is because it was not wisdom to give it unto you.  But if you are faithful, the day will come when God will give any man what he asks for if he asks for it in righteousness.

I believe the Lord loves this people and is preparing us to receive all things. The day will come when the Lamanites will build a city called the New Jerusalem.  They, not we, [will] build it.  We with all the Gentiles who repent will help built it.  The powers of heaven will be revealed and Jesus be in our midst and the power of heaven be revealed by Adam and all men will know it in the Kingdom of God.  And all secrets and key words of the Priesthood and all things will be revealed.  I hope you will hearken to council and do all things which God requires of us, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Organization of the Church

John Taylor

November 15, 1851


Since our arrival in France, we have very frequently been asked how our church is organized.  For the satisfaction of those who are desirous to obtain this knowledge, we give the following information.

In the pamphlet which we have elsewhere referred to, we gave an account of the commencement of this work; of the ministering of an holy angel to Joseph Smith; of the finding and translation of ancient records; of the first [100] organization of the church; of the restoration of primitive Christianity, its priesthood, doctrines, ordinances, gifts, blessings, and powers; of the ordination of various officers, and other things; but the particular organization we did not enter into.

When Joseph Smith was living, he was the president of the Church and had two counselors of his own selection, but sanctioned also by the Church, which always has a voice in all such matters.  After Joseph Smith’s death, Brigham Young was appointed president, by virtue of his being president of the Twelve Apostles, who stand next in authority to the presidency.  He has two counselors, chosen from the Twelve: Heber C. Kimball and Willard Richards.  These are presented before the people and sanctioned by them.  The First Presidency has authority over all matters pertaining to the Church.

The next in order are the Twelve Apostles, whose calling is to preach the gospel, or see it preached, to all the world.  They hold the same authority in all parts of the world that the First Presidency do at home, and act under their direction.  They are called by revelation and sanctioned by the people.  The Twelve have a president; the present one is Orson Hyde.  This Presidency is obtained by seniority of age and ordination.

There are then the Seventies; of these there are thirty-three quorums.  It is their office also to preach the gospel to all the world.  There is a presidency over each quorum.  And again there are seven presidents with their president, who preside over the presidents of the quorums of seventy.

There are then the Elders, of whom there are many.  It is their business to preach the gospel in different parts of the earth where they are located, according to circumstances; but they are not bound, as the Seventies are, to go to different parts of the earth, only as their circumstances will admit.  But they have power to preach, to baptize, to lay on hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, and to attend to other ordinances of the Church.

There are then the Priests, whose duty it is to preach and baptize, but not to lay on hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost.

[101]  There are also Teachers, whose business it is to visit the members in the different branches of the Church where they live, and to see that they attend to their family duties, prayers, etc.; to watch over the spiritual interests of those under their care; and to see that there is no hard feeling, contention, evil speaking, or wickedness.

There are, then, Deacons, whose business it is to assist the Teachers and attend to the temporal affairs of the branches where they may happen to be situated.

There is then a Quorum of High Priests, of whom there are many.  It is their business generally to preside over churches, and assist on councils as they may be directed, whether at home or abroad.  But a Seventy or an Elder can do this in their absence, or when others have not been appointed.

There are also Evangelists or Patriarchs.

The above is an outline of the organization for the purpose of preaching the gospel to all the world, and carrying out the order of God as revealed unto His Church.  The Twelve Apostles and the Seventies have the particular burden upon them to preach to all the world and to go to any nation as they may be directed.  The High Priests also are expected to go when called upon, but their business is more with churches that are built up than with organizing churches.

The way we conduct affairs in the Church is as follows:  If any member or Elder of a branch of the Church sins against his brother or the Church, the person against whom he transgresses is to go to him alone and reason with him; if he hears him, well; if he repents, he is to be forgiven; if he does not, he is to take one or more with him; if he hears them, well; if not, he is to be reported to the Church; if he does not hearken to the Church with which he is associated, he is to be cut off by them.

This is, however, for church fellowship; but if a man steals or otherwise sins against the laws of the land, he is to be delivered up to the laws of the land.

Having said so much on this subject, we will now speak of the regulations and organization of the Church in the valley.  President Brigham Young is the President of the Church, and is assisted in his duties by two counselors before named.  There is another council there called the [102] High Council.  This is a council that sits from time to time, and investigates all important matters of difficulty that may exist between brethren.  These are selected from among the High Priests, and their matters are so arranged that one-half plead for, and the other [half] against the accused, so as to arrive at the merits of the case.  They are drawn by lot, but it is not known who are to be in favour of, or who opposed to, until the time of sitting, when it is decided by numbers; sometimes one, two, or three, speak on a side, and sometimes more, according to the magnitude of the case.  The president who is the senior among them, gives his decision.  The others are then called upon to vote, which is generally unanimous; if it is not, the persons not voting assign their reasons, but the majority decide.  The courts are governed, not according to any particular law or technicalities, but according to evidence and the merits of the case.

If the parties are dissatisfied, which is not often the case, there is an appeal to the First Presidency.

There is, then, an order called Bishops.  It is their business more particularly to attend to the temporal affairs of the Church and counsel the people over whom they preside.  For example, in the Great Salt Lake City when I was there, it was divided into nineteen wards, over each of which there was a Bishop; each Bishop represented his own ward, and overlooked it and its affairs temporal–gave counsel to those who needed it, and acted as a father to the people.  Each Bishop has two counselors, who together form a court to decide upon all matters of small difference that may occur among the people.  He also makes arrangements for meetings, for public worship in his ward or precinct, and presides over the Priests, Teachers, and Deacons in his ward, and to see that the poor, the sick, the widow and the orphan are provided for.

There is then a Presiding Bishop, whose business it is to preside over the others and attend to the affairs of the whole church assembled in Zion temporally.

There is also a president over the city who has two counselors.  It is his business to superintend all the affairs of the city and its environs–those affairs which do not come under the direction of the Bishop.  He presides over the High Council in cases of difficulty, regulates the public [103] meetings for the city, and attends to a variety of other affairs for the general public good.

This is a general pattern for all the towns or cities.  All have their president and his counselors, their bishops and bishops’ courts.  In some they have their High Council; in others not.  If they have not, their difficult cases are brought before the High Council before referred to.

All who are in good standing in the Church submit to the decisions of the Church without complaint; and every officer in the Church pays attention to, respects, and is governed by those who are appointed as his presidents.

It ought to be remarked here, however, that all officers in the Church are first called by revelation by those having authority, according to the nature of the case, and then are voted for by the people over whom they are to preside.

Each person possesses power according to the position he occupies; and it is expected that all persons concerned will respect his judgment and decisions.

The First Presidency and the Twelve are presented before all the Church in all parts of the world, for acceptance or rejection, twice every year in the several conferences; and any member of the Church has a perfect right to arise and testify, if he knows anything objectionable against these persons.  The above rule applies to all other officers, whether at home or abroad.  The only difference is that they are more circumscribed in their limits, and are voted for by the people over whom they preside.  The High Council, Bishop, President of the Stake, and his council, are voted for by the whole Church assembled in Zion, but not by any branches of the Church; while the presidents of conferences and branches are voted for by their conferences or branches, and not by the people in Zion.  When a member of the Church leaves England, the United States, or any other nation, for Zion, he takes a certificate with him of his membership or the office he holds;  until then, he is not known there.  The Seventies, High Priests, or others abroad, are amenable to their own quorums or to the Twelve Apostles.

We would here remark that the love and fear of God is the foundation of all our actions, spiritual or temporal–that His work was commenced and the organization of [104] this Church was given by revelation, and by that it has been sustained to the present time.

Concerning government:  Some years ago in Nauvoo, a gentleman in my hearing, a member of the Legislature, asked Joseph Smith how it was that he was enabled to govern so many people, and to observe such perfect order; remarking at the same time that it was impossible for them to do it anywhere else.  Mr. Smith remarked that it was very easy to do that.  “How?” responded the gentleman, “to us it is very difficult.”  Mr. Smith replied, “I teach them correct principles, and they govern themselves.”

The above I have seen fully exemplified in different nations.  In Manchester, England, I attended a conference a short time ago, at which there were assembled two or three hundred Elders and officers of various kinds and some thousands of people; and in all of their business transactions I did not hear one dissenting voice.

We have also other laws which we as citizens of the United States recognize.

In Nauvoo we had a city charter, city council, municipal court, made our city regulations, laws, etc.; but this was more for protection than otherwise.

At the present time we have a territory in the United States acknowledged by the Congress and President of the United States.  We have our own Governor, Secretary of State, Legislature and other government officers.  These to us are a protection and shield.  We never find any difficulty in keeping the laws of the land; but as we have others who are not in the Church, nor subject to its laws, we have the means within our reach of preventing one citizen interfering with another’s rights, as well as preserving ourselves from being imposed upon; for we do not enforce our Church laws upon those who are not members of the Church.  Everything with us is voluntary.

All men are protected with us in their religious rights, no matter what nation or creed they belong to.  We teach men good principles:  if they receive them, well; if not, it is their business.  We never persecute a person for his religious faith. * * *

The acting Bishop, whose time is wholly occupied by his duties, has what he requires for himself and family; [105] and a number of clerks, who are also occupied in the same way, receive wages.

There is a tenth or tithing paid by the members of the Church.  This is applied to the building of temples and other church buildings, etc.

But all officers in the Church, if at home, provide for themselves and families.  Those abroad trust to the Lord and their brethren.  The Twelve, Seventies, or High Priests are expected at any time to go to the ends of the earth if required, without purse or scrip, as the ancient disciples did.  They are generally, however, provided for by their brethren on their journey, or at the place of their destination by voluntary contributions. (Mill. Star 13: 336-340)


Remarks by Orson Pratt

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

November 20, 1851


Elder O. Pratt spoke upon the death of Sister Hendricks.  He was thankful we as a people were settled in these valleys of the mountains where it was healthy.  We have heretofore suffered much by sickness in other places, but we cannot get entirely away from sickness and death let us go where we will in this life for all men must taste of death.  Even those who were translated had to have a change to immortality.  There may be some pain attending that even if it was only for an instant.  There must be some space between death and the resurrection.  Sin is the cause of this evil, even death. Without sin, men would have been immortal.

If I should hear of a God who had made man to have pain and sorrow without any agency or sin, I could not have any confidence in him, and the heavens could not.  It may be said it is necessary to have sorrow and misery in order to enjoy good.  The Lord, when He made the world, knew how to fix things so that man should bring upon himself death, evil and sorrow if he [had agency].  He planted the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the midst of the garden.  Little children did not commit sin but their parents did.  It was not our own sins that brought death, but the sin of our first parents.  Death being introduced into the world, we all partake of it.

[106]  If we had not the great plan of salvation revealed, we should be without law.  If it was not for revelation, we should not know that we had an immortal spirit within us.  We should take care of the spirit as well as our bodies.  The spirit needs taking care of as well as the body.

The spirit is a being that possesses certain capacities that are as eternal as God Himself that were never given to it.  I do not believe that any matters that ever saw the time that it could not love, hate, fear, etc., can ever do it again.  But I believe it is eternal.  The formation may not be eternal, but the substance of which it is composed is eternal.  The capacities may be enlarged but its capacity always existed.  There may be a time when our spirits had a beginning of formation but the capacity always existed.

The infant at first appeared as a blank page, but that spirit before it came here was full of knowledge as was the case with the babe of Bethlehem, Jesus Christ.  He had wisdom to construct worlds before he came here, but had now descended below all things.  Came from his father’s throne but his knowledge, power, and wisdom was laid aside, and nothing but the bare capacity was left.  Can any man remember the first month of his life in the flesh?  No.  Neither can you remember the time of your existence or doings before you came here.  This is to prove men if they will prove faithful, while this knowledge is taken from them in infancy, childhood, and manhood, life and death.  If one man Jesus Christ can ascend and overcome all things, so can another.

If we find anything that is good, lovely, virtuous, good, exalted, then let us lay hold of it until we are exalted.  Then the spirit will a[do]rn the body and do away with many of the evils of the fall.  There is something in the countenance of a man who takes care of his spirit that is glorious and good. * * *

Many things may be said about the object of our bodies and spirits.  They are destined to arise in glory, exaltation, and eternal life.  Then let us take care of our bodies and spirits.  We have our minds filled with the cares of life, and yet when we die, we have to leave all our temporal affairs.  It seems to be the object of God that we should earn our bread by the sweat of the brow.  If this was not the case, we might be idle which would produce [107] more evil than it would to labour.  If we improve our [time], we shall get glory that we should not get if we were idle; for when we die, the knowledge we have gained will be of benefit to us.  We cannot get a fulness of glory while our spirit and body are separated.  We may think, reflect, and know right from wrong, but we cannot act as in the body.  We shall look for the resurrection of the body with much interest and great anxiety.  If it was not for the resurrection of the body, we should be subject to the devil and death, temporal and spiritual.  Those who kept the Celestial law will be redeemed from all sin and death, restored to God and all blessings there is for man.  Such will have joy in paradise.  Joseph says if we keep the law, we shall have a Celestial paradise and our spirits return and hunt up our bodies and enter it again with a fulness of Celestial spirit.

How will the resurrection be brought to pass and when will be the different times of the resurrection?  The good will arise before those who die after the resurrection of Christ.  The good did arise at the resurrection of Christ.  We find mummies in the catacombs of Egypt who died long before Christ arose who remain; yet some saints in Asia and America did arise and appear unto many.

I do not believe the resurrection will take place by being born again as the doctrine of some is.  I would not believe it for the world unless President Young was to say the Lord had revealed it to him.  I believe the saints will arise out of their graves as Ezekiel said they would.

The resurrection will take place before the Son of Man comes as the scriptures declare.  Before He comes, there shall be a great sign appear in heaven.  All the nations of the earth shall see it together.  An angel shall sound his trump that all nations will hear it saying that Babylon will be burned.  Then after half an hour of silence, the veil of the covering will be taken off.  The face of heaven will be revealed, and the face of the Lord will be unveiled, and the graves of the Saints will be open, and the saints on the earth will be caught up to meet the Lord.  This is the first resurrection.  The Zion of Enoch will also appear and dwell on the earth. The Saints will then receive their everlasting inheritances.

[108]  Joseph got a promise from the Lord that he should have a right to an inheritance in the Nauvoo House forever.  If the Saints do not get their possessions by covenant as Abram did Canaan, or Joseph [did] Nauvoo, there will be judges appointed to give every man his inheritances for an everlasting inheritance.

Then comes the time when Joseph and all will receive their keys and turn them to the saints in this dispensation and reveal the mysteries of eternity to the saints who have their celestial bodies.  They will be qualified to receive a fulness of celestial glory and spirit, and will receive all they can endure.  But they will grow to all eternity in knowledge and power.

Will the Saints be confined to this earth?  No, they will be caught up and not die and lie in the dust.  Jesus will have a throne in Jerusalem and the saints will have thrones on the earth, but they will go to other worlds or in the heavens, and all will be free.  Adam will give instructions concerning the garden of Eden.  We will go on foreign missions to visit other worlds.  We shall also remember our acts in this life, and inasmuch as they have been good, it will be a consolation to reflect upon them. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Brigham Young’s Medical Lecture

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

December 1851


President Young’s medical lecture delivered before a Board of Health at Great Salt Lake City:

President Young arose and said I wish to impart intelligence to the people.  My first proposition is the science of medicine.  The study and practice of medicine as a science, if it may be called a science, is the most imperfect of any science in existence, as is practiced by the doctors of the present day.  The doctors and priests of the day send more to death and hell than anywhere else.  About one in a million may get some glory.  A bigger set of cursed scoundrels never graced the earth than that class.  Surgery is a different class and is very necessary in many instances and that system can be learned.  But to learn the system of man, they can no more learn that, than they [109] can learn the heavens.  A worse set of ignoramuses do not walk the earth.  They do not know how to turn [–] wind in a man’s body when it gets cross ways.  If you cut their infernal throats, the people will live.

I know what this society is here for: it is to impart what knowledge they have to others.  But I have seen the folly of the doctors even at my own doors.  Take them as a whole, they are the most damnable set on the earth.  Their practices are infamous and their medicines produce death; if the people want to eat calomel, let them do it and be damned.  But don’t feed it to any of my family.  If my doctor does and I know it, I would kill him as quick as I would for feeding arsenic.  I do not employ such doctors to visit.  I don’t employ any doctors to visit me.

The practice of doctors in visiting women in childbirth is damnable. Women should be let alone and let nature have its [perfe]ct work.  Let a woman keep her child if she can 2 or 3 years, but she cannot do it.  When the time has come, nature will deliver her of her child without a doctor.  Don’t fret.  Let everything take its proper course and sickness would depart away.

The doctors in New Haven met by mutual agreement to see how far they could frighten a man.  Did actually frighten him to death, a robust hearty man.

Many things should be said to this people.  There has not been a doctor baptized into this Church that has the Holy Ghost but what will acknowledge they are a fool.  There is not a physician in the Church or in the world that is taught from on high by revelation but what will acknowledge this to be true doctrine.  If there is a doctor who can see and know man from head to foot and know how to cure his diseases by revelation, such are the only true and safe doctors on earth.  All others are fools.  I see men die in the hands of the doctors.  The medicines kill them.  Why don’t they tell what ails the patient or acknowledge they don’t know?  The foolery there is among this class is disgraceful and makes me mad, and the day will come when you will not wonder at my feelings.

You are natural persons and God has made you natural.  If you are with child, that child will come forth by nature without a doctor.  The earth is just so.  Will bring forth of itself seed after its kind.  If a person is sick and [110] have not faith to be healed, give them herbs, the product of the earth, and it will cure you until it is time to die.

When a cat is sick, she will eat catnip without a doctor and she gets well.  Nature prompts her to it.  If a dog is bit with a rattlesnake, he will dig a hole in the earth and lie in the ground until the poison is gone out.  So nature will teach us as well as the cat and dog.  When a toad is bit by a spider, [it] will go and eat plantain (sic) if he can get it.  If a child is to die in being born, let it die, but don’t employ a doctor to kill it.

How will you be instructed?  I will tell you what to do if you are taken sick; don’t be frightened but be calm.  If you get a cold, let nature be [–].  Disease will go up and down through the system to find a place to be located.  It is as much our duty to know how to cure our system as to feed our body.  The doctors would say you are diseased and don’t know it.  Who made the doctors?  The devil.  The Lord did not make the doctors of the present day.  Such a thing as a man midwife was not known until about 1500.  Why did not the women all die before this time?  Look at the Indians.  For 100 years, millions of children have been born in the wilderness of male and female and they live and not die without a doctor [–].

You may ask what shall we do?  I will tell you.  I will give you a lesson and I want you to mark it.  When you go to visit a woman in travail, let her alone until her full time has come.  Remember it.  Let the mother alone.  Let your system be natural.  Teach them also to exercise all that they can that when they come to be delivered, it will be better for them.  A doctor if he had good sense would not wish to visit women in childbirth.  And if a woman had good sense, she would not wish a man to doctor them on such an occasion.

I want you to teach your children the principle of truth.  I talk as I do for the people will not sense anything unless they are half knocked down or thunder rolls in their ears.  Soft words will not do.  I want you to hear and understand.

There has been some difficulty in this Board of Health.  If I had been with you, you would not have had any difficulty.  It has been through a misunderstanding.  If you understood principle, you would not quarrel.  You may [111] spread Calomel on your bread and butter and eat it if you wish, but it is deadly poison as arsenic but not as quick.  It is not good.  You may ask if it was ever good in any case?  There may be cases where it might be a benefit, but it would [want] a revelation to tell [when] it was.  There is not poison in lobelia.  I will give $5,000 for the 16th part of an oz. of poison that can be extracted out of all the lobelia in this valley.

It is not probable that any two persons are organized just alike in all respects.  Then who is a physician?  Now unless he be taught of God and is a prophet or revelator, he cannot understand the human system, know diseases and what will cure it.  I don’t care how a man acts if he intends to act right and when he acts wrong are willing to be righted.  We will take the best physician of the day that lives the closest to the Lord.  I don’t care how well he is, he will be brought down as a fool for he will be made to let God be honoured.

I have been on a journey in the dust.  I have got dust on my brain.  That is what ails me.  It will wash off.  Could a doctor tell what ails me?  No.  Can a doctor tell what ails a sick man by feeling of his pulse?  No more than he could by feeling a dog’s tail.  There is no physician except he is taught of God.

You should learn how to doctor yourselves.  You should study your own system.  Any people who must trust to a doctor at all times will die.  But trust in God and you will live longer.  What a different time it would be if all trusted in God rather than in the doctors, for 9 out of 10 die under the doctor’s care who would live if they trusted in God alone.  Don’t get frightened and you will do well enough.  It is just as reasonable to send for a doctor to have a calf, colt or pig brought forth as it was for a child.

After you receive your resurrected bodies, you will bring forth spirits to all eternity who will go to some world and take a tabernacle or body the same as we have.  You don’t want a doctor anymore here than there.  If the members of this society are true, either male or female, they will impart all useful knowledge they have to others.  If they are not willing to do this, they are corrupt.  If one man knows more than another, let him tell his knowledge, and if a man knows more than all the rest, let him [112] be a father unto the people and teach them and not act like a boy.  If I hold myself equal [for?] equal.  If I am superior, let me manifest it by doing a better deed and being superior myself.  It is the man that rejects light and knowledge who shows him that God condemns and I condemn him.

Some say we have spiritual wives, but I think God has made us all natural, and I think we should be natural. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Address to the Sisters

December 1, 1851


(The author requests that her name may be withheld, although it was forwarded to us.  We think the address will amply commend itself to the consideration of the sisters.–The M.S. editor)

Scripture enjoins us not to despise “the day of small things”, and great good has often been achieved by insignificant means; and Solomon says, “a word in season, how good it is!” and “a word to the wise is sufficient for them.”  I have taken upon me to speak a word to those who are, I trust, taking the “wise virgins” for their pattern; receive it, my sisters, in the same spirit in which it is written, i.e., that of a loving heart; and if you gain a hint that may assist you in your important duties, I shall rejoice evermore and be a gainer, for you will bless me,

“Smallest helps if rightly given,

Make the impulse stronger.”

It is because I love my sisters and desire to see them maintain the position that God intended them to attain and fulfil that I now address them.  It is woman’s honourable privilege to be Queen of a mighty realm! Mighty in minutioe!  Her “kingdom cometh not with observation,” her subjects are the Lilliputians of the earth, and their moral stature will be pigmy, full grown, or colossal, according as her laws are wise, judicious, and in love; she controls, or ought to do, the elements of life–the germs of future glory and exaltation–the rudiments of angelic life!  It is her [113] province to mould, to train, to nurture, to support, to feed, to enlighten, to sow seed into the precious mind of infancy and youth.  What more noble destiny would she desire!  Is she not working for eternity?  Most assuredly–and her work is for exaltation or condemnation.  Can she do this in her own strength?  Certainly not; let her remember, if she goes to the fountainhead of wisdom and asks, she shall receive–to all that ask in sincerity, God giveth wisdom “liberally and upbraideth not.”  Many of the great men of the earth who have risen to eminence and power, have pointed to their mothers, who by their judicious management of their youth–the training of their infant minds, and the precious seed, which under God, they were enabled to cast into their minds, they became great.  Among a host of such we may name men of our own day, viz.:  Napoleon, Lamartine, and Bulwer. Shall not such instances urge woman to feel her responsibility, to consider the end of her creation?  Oh! most noble is her work–mighty is her responsibility.  Her first act of government must be self!–she has many a battle to fight to conquer that troublesome little empire, her own heart!–but this must be accomplished–the foundation must be good or it cannot support the superstructure.  The fountain must be pure, or its streams can never fertilize the young plants that they are destined to renovate and invigorate.  The first thing she must learn and then teach is humility, the next obedience, if she wishes to conquer well, she must stoop to do so.  All children, too, should learn these two fundamental principles–from these alone will flow, “love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance”, but remember humility and obedience must not degenerate into apathy and servility, such would render them null and void, if not obnoxious; the really great, and active, and energetic, ever possess these truly intrinsic but more humble virtues; true greatness is always humble and gentle, for it knows its power, it feels its dignity is fully established, and there is no foolish fear of compromising it.

In good government there must ever be decision of character, firmness and gentleness united.  Let your laws be framed in love, and after the pattern of the law of God! And then do not allow them to be broken with impunity; [114] there must be no vacillation about it; make no law in your household government that you cannot rigorously enforce.  Let love ever preside, but mistake not foolish fondness for love; mistake not indolence and apathy for meekness; mistake not negligence in your arrangements for easiness of temper; mistake not want of order for “fussiness”; there is much that is wrong in women by such like woeful mistakes, and by not calling things by their right names; they take shelter in their weakness and believe it is right; whereas, if woman knew herself, her soul is large enough for all her Maker intended her for, and she was made to be “a help meet for man”; these words are penned with the sublime brevit of Scripture, but they form a compendium of woman’s position, of woman’s duty, and of woman’s exaltation; brief as they are, they stand as a text to a discourse that would fill every sheet of this “Star”, but that is not for me.

If woman really carries out her destiny, she is truly a heroine; if she desires greatness she has it.  I will prove it.  Woman’s sphere is in the secluded, domestic dreams of life, beyond which her name is unheard and unknown!  But is he only a hero whose name resounds through the world as the herald of battle and bloodshed?  In the eye of the misjudging world such may be such, but when “the partition wall is broken down” that shuts out the mortal from the immortal, when the scales fall from the human eye, and the veil is removed from human hearts, then shall many an obscure individual stand forth as the sterling soldier of Christ, and many shall be abashed whose proud banner flaunted over the battlefield of human glory, but who forgot to enlist themselves under the banner of the Great Captain of their salvation and disdain to fight in the ranks of the Christian warfare.

Is there no heroism in the daily, hourly, struggle of the battle of life, viz., to do our duty in the situation of life in which we are placed; in the untiring efforts bear upward towards the light of Truth; and to keep straight in the “narrow way” that leadeth unto life, to press on “through evil report and good report”; to do our duty to the wayward as well as to the kind and gentle; to be patient, to persevere, to endure, to be gentle, to be disinterested, to press on in the path of rectitude, not for the praise of men, [115] for often no eye but God’s beholds this inward struggle and this secret strife of flesh and Spirit; but because the soul’s eye is resting on that glorious promise, “be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life!”  What is heroism if this or something like this is not a definition of it?

Then I will assume that I have established the fact, that every true woman, one who has learned to govern herself and so become fit to govern others, and is swaying her sceptre according to the law of her Sovereign, is a heroine!  For they must be ignorant indeed who do not know that this is but a faint outline of her struggle through life!  Her name will be emblazoned on no earthly scroll of fame; her brows may be bound by no coronet of bay or laurel, or diadem or gorgeous gems; but I know it is traced by the “Recording Angel” in the chancery of heaven, and sealed with the signet of the Eternal!

Oh, my Sisters, let us again revert to the words–woman was made a “help meet” for man!  Let us ponder these words in our hearts; man is the delegate of God; woman for his honour and glory!  Then the more glorious she is, the more honour she can confer upon him.  God is the Father of all.  My sisters, let us pray then that He will give us wisdom, that we may ever act as becomes the wives, mothers, and sisters of the servants of God; that we may truly be a crown and an honour to them, and that we may stand side by side with them, as the sons and daughters of the Most High, and conjointly roll on the great work of these the last days; that having been fellow-labourers in the vineyard of the Lord, we may together inherit the glories of His kingdom, when the knowledge of the Lord shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea, and when the Lord of Hosts shall reign in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem and before His ancients–gloriously. (Mill. Star, vol. 13, pp. 359-360)


Address to the Saints in Great Britain

Lorenzo Snow–December 1, 1851


Beloved Saints, a short sojourn in this land has served to bind more closely those feelings of interest which must ever be called into action during an intimate [116] acquaintance with the Saints.  As the period now approaches when, for other climes, I must bid adieu to the kindly smiling faces and warm hearts of the brethren in the British Isles, I can but express my deep and heartfelt wishes for the prosperity and continued progress of the work in this country, and the well-being and happiness of all those who have the privilege of co-operating in the great and glorious cause of spreading light and intelligence amongst the children of men.

To my brethren in the Priesthood I beg to offer a few words of counsel, instruction, and exhortation. Upon you rest high and sacred responsibilities, which relate not only to the salvation of this generation, but of many past generations and many to come.  The glorious ensign of Emanuel’s kingdom once again established in the world must be unfurled in every nation, kingdom, and empire; the voice of warning, the voice of the bridegroom, “prepare ye, prepare ye, the way of the Lord” must be carried forth unto all people; you are the ones whom the Lord has selected for this purpose, even the horn of Joseph, to push together the people.  Surely you cannot be too anxiously, nor too industriously engaged, seeking how best, the manner most useful to yourselves and mankind, to magnify your holy and sacred offices. ‘Tis the Priesthood that will give you character, renown, wisdom, power, and authority, and build you up here below among the children of men; and above, exalt you to peace and happiness, to glory, to thrones and dominions, even through countless eternities.

This world in its kingdoms and empires, possesses in some degree glory and greatness, faintly shadowing forth what is embraced in regions above; but here, to these is joined little happiness, little durability. The world we seek offers to its inhabitants unfading glory, immortal renown, dominions of continued increase, where families grow into nations–nations into generations–generations into worlds–worlds into universes; this is the path of the Priesthood–the path of the Holy Ones.

Well did the Apostle say, “eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered the heart of man to conceive the things which God hath prepared for them that love him, but God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit, for [117] the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, even the deep things of God.”

Authoritative rule is not the proper rule by which to govern Saints, but rather seek to administer in the spirit of humility, wisdom, and goodness, teaching not so much by theory as practice.  Though one teach with the eloquence of an angel, yet one’s good practices, good examples, one’s acts, constantly manifesting wholeheartedness for the interests of the people, teach much more eloquently, much more effectually.  ‘Tis indeed few who have enough moral courage to be strictly honest, faithful, virtuous, and honorable in all positions–these few will hold the priesthood and receive its fullness, but none other.  Purity, virtue, fidelity, godliness must be sought ambitiously, or the crown cannot be won.  Those principles must be incorporated with ourselves, woven into our constitutions, becoming a part of us, making us a center, a fountain of truth, of equity, justice, and mercy, of all that is good and great, that from us may proceed the light, the life, the power, and the law to direct, to govern and assist to save a wandering world; acting as the sons of God, for and in behalf of our Father in heaven.

We expect in the resurrection to exercise the powers of our priesthood–we can exercise them only in proportion as we secure its righteousness and perfections; these qualifications can be had only as they are sought and obtained, so that in the morning of the resurrection we will possess those acquisitions only which we secured in this world!  Godliness cannot be conferred but must be acquired, a fact of which the religious world seem strangely and lamentably unconscious.  Seek to benefit others, and others will seek to benefit you; and he that would be great, let him be good, studying the interests of the whole, becoming the servant of all, whereby he will secure to himself most of the wisdom and power of God, the love, esteem, and veneration of his people.

The Elders must become persons of the highest responsibilities.  The happiness of people, of nations, of generations, will depend upon the right and faithful exercise of the powers of their offices.  If in a lesser sphere of action they fail to be trustworthy, who will depend upon them in the greater?  In view of the vast responsibilities to [118] be placed upon men in this high calling, they are in a measure left to themselves to act upon their agency; if they pass onward to the close of this probation without being overthrown by evil powers, keeping their spirits pure, and through the power of the Holy Ghost, educate and build themselves up in those qualifications essential to such exaltations, then, in due time, God will elevate them to those positions.  In all your acts and conduct ever have the consciousness that you are now preparing and making yourselves a life to be continued through eternities; act upon no principle that you would be ashamed or unwilling to act upon in heaven, employ no means in the attainment of an object that a celestial enlightened conscience would disapprove.  Whilst feelings and passions excite you to action, let principles pure, honorable, holy, and virtuous, always rule and govern.  Deity is within us, our spiritual organization is Deity–the child of God, begotten in his image; therefore, brethren, “Let the same mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, finding himself in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God.”  “The creature” or children of God were introduced into this world, “not willingly,” becoming subject to vanity, sorrows and pains, but to do the will of the Father and obtain a glory a heavenly inheritance, “to become one with God;”  And he that hath this hope in him, purifieth himself even as God is pure.

We are here that we may be educated in a school of suffering and of fiery trails, which school was necessary for Jesus, our elder brother, who, the scriptures tell us, was made perfect through suffering.  It is necessary we suffer in all things, that we may be qualified and worthy to rule and govern all things, even as our Father in heaven and his eldest son, Jesus.  God has revealed to us the mystery which all the world seek after, but fail in knowing because of pride, wickedness, and the power of Satan darkening their minds, viz., the path of the salvation and happiness of our being.

And now, where is the man among you having once burst the veil and gazed upon this purity, the glory, the might, majesty, and dominion of a perfected man, in celestial glory, in eternity, will not cheerfully resign life, suffer the most excruciating tortures, let limb be torn from [119] limb sooner than dishonor or resign his Priesthood.  In truth, did not our Savior utter this parable, “The kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls and having found one of great price, went and sold all he had to buy the same; and again, like unto a man finding a treasure in a field, sold all he had to purchase the field.”  The glory revealed to our view, and which we seek, is tangible, can be felt, seen, and heard, but its length, its breadth, its depth, its majesty, its peace, its joy, its happiness surpass all understanding; tongue cannot express it, language fails to portray its vastness of extent.

To the Saints I would affectionately add: your prospects in every respect are the most encouraging that could be wished.  The Lord, who fails not in his promises, has undertaken your deliverance, spiritual and temporal, and you yourselves are witnesses of the accomplishment of the first.  Your fetters of superstition and priestcraft have been burst asunder; the dark and false mantle of tradition has been rent; you have been shown the Mother of Harlots, and her daughters, in all their characteristic ignorance, folly, and filthiness; and have hearkened to and obeyed the voice, “Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, that you receive not of her plagues.”  Your hearts, your thoughts, and feelings, are no longer associated with those Babylonish schemes which chain thought and reason, making it blasphemy for man to dare speak of the nobility of his birth, and true-being of his Father in heaven.

You feel that you are delivered–restored to reason and to yourselves–under the government of but one law, that which made you free, even the law of glorious truth, the word and will of God, by whom we are begotten all children of the one great Parent; yea, in this that we are made free, will we lift up our voice and make melody with thanksgivings to our God, that He has listened to the cries of his people, has seen their bondage and sent forth His angels with the fullness of the Gospel to redeem and save and glorify His elect, make them kings and priests in heaven and over earth, that thereby He might bring to pass in due time His goodwill and purposes respecting all the families of mankind.  As the Lord has made you spiritually free, herein you have assurance also of your [120] temporal deliverance.  How great your poverty, however stupendous your difficulties, it matters little; the word has gone forth in your favor, and no opposing arm can stay its course; Zion must be established, her lands inhabited, her cities built, her temples reared, her sons become mighty and powerful; that she may rise fair as the moon, clear as the sun, and terrible as an army with banners; and all nations shall fear and tremble and stand afar off in the day of her majesty.

But you have need of patience, that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise.  A caution which should not be forgotten: many of you may have severe trials that your faith may become more perfect, your confidence be increased, your knowledge of the powers of heaven be augmented, and this before your redemption takes place.  If a stormy cloud sweep over the horizon of your course in this land, as in America; if the cup of bitter suffering be offered, and you compelled to partake; Satan let loose to go among you, with all his seductive powers of deceivings and cunning craftiness; the strong relentless arm of persecution lifted against you; — then, in that hour, lift up your heads and rejoice that you are accounted worthy to suffer thus with Jesus, the Saints, and holy prophets, and know that the period of your redemption has approached.

I feel, my brethren and sisters, to exhort you with heartfelt expression. Be of good cheer–be not disheartened, for assuredly the day rapidly comes when your tears shall be dried, your hearts comforted, and you shall eat of the products of your labors, sit under your fig-tree and in the shade of your vine unmolested, and no more know or feel the hand of tyranny.  You shall possess the riches and fat of the land, gold and silver, fields and vineyards, flocks and herds, houses and palaces; your sons shall grow up like young plants of renown, your daughters as polished cornerstones of the temple, that you may boast yourselves in all the glory of the Gentiles.  And unto you verily shall the scripture be fulfilled, “Seek first the kingdom of heaven and its righteousness, and all these things shall be added.”

Be honest, be virtuous, be honorable, be meek and lowly, courageous and bold, cultivate simplicity, be like [121] the Lord; hold to the truth though through fire or sword, torture of death; act honorably towards all men, for they are our brethren; a part of the family of God, but are ignorant and blind, having forgotten their God and their covenants with him in eternity.

I feel to express in the highest terms my sanction and approbation of F. D. Richards’ presidency of the British Isles; the prudent, wise, and profitable spirit and manner in which he has conducted the editorial department merits the warmest need of praise.  The many interesting and useful publications he has issued, together with the enlarged and much improved edition of the hymns used by the Saints, in addition to his other labors, furnish a true testimony of his indefatigable zeal and enterprising spirit.  The deep interest he has taken in forwarding our foreign missions, has secured him not only the warmest thanks and feelings of gratitude from us on whom he imposed the heavy burdens and responsibilities of those missions, but from thousands and tens of thousands whose deliverance from sectarian bondage is now taking place in all those vast extended fields of our foreign labors.  In the arrangement of the conferences, much wisdom has been displayed in selecting good and faithful men to preside over them–men who will do well with the Saints generally, to receive his instructions, thereby lightening and relieving his anxieties and responsibilities as far as possible.  My long acquaintance with him gives me the most unqualified confidence in his wisdom, excellence of heart and mind, entire devotedness to the work and service of the Lord, and faithfulness in his exalted position.  His counselors I know to be wise men and men of God, and as such, I recommend them to the confidence and esteem of the brethren.

Respecting the progress of those missions which I have undertaken, the prospects of the future and the field of labor assigned to the various Elders, it may be gratifying to the Saints to have the following particulars, that their faith, interest, and prayers on behalf of them may ever be kept in lively exercise.  Elder Willis, whom I appointed to take charge of the Calcutta Mission, is supposed to have about reached his destination; Elder Findlay, late president of the Hull conference, to the [122] Bombay Mission, is now on his way.  Elder Obray, late president of Sheerness, whom I have appointed to Malta, is now prepared, and will soon set sail for that island; Elder Stenhouse presides in Switzerland; Elder Woodard in Italy.  The translation of the Book of Mormon into Italian is about completed; parts are in the hands of the printer and will be finished ready for issuing in about two months.

Having set in operation the above missions, I turn my thoughts to the far distant fields of labor I contemplate shortly undertaking–a mission requiring all my energies, extending over nations, continents, islands, seas, oceans, empires–encountering the freezing Alps, the burning sun of the Torrid Zone, the dangers of the trackless waters; the pestilential cholera, the miasma of various climes, together with all the casualties of sea and land which must be encountered.  To aid and assist me in this enterprise deeply do I feel to call upon Israel’s God, and for the prayers of my brethren for support and agency.  To the service of the Lord I have devoted my life; my all has been placed upon the altar of sacrifice, that I may honor Him, do His will acceptably, and spread the principles of life among the children of men.  When I reflect upon the past, and trace the hand of the Lord marvelously opening my way, and prospering me in every thing relative to these missions beyond my highest expectations, I feel doubly encouraged to press forward to the future; language indeed fails to express the deep gratitude of my heart for his blessings.  Those brethren and Saints whose liberality of soul and interest for the work of God have been particularly manifested in these missions upon them, may the blessing of the Most High be poured with equal liberality, and when in after years they shall hear the sweet sound of thousands and tens of thousands of those nations shouting the praises of the Almighty for the light of revelation, then will their hearts also rejoice in the glad consciousness that they likewise took a part in bringing to pass this glorious redemption.

I take my departure from here to Switzerland, thence to Italy, to Malta, to Bombay, and from thence to Calcutta, and shall probably accomplish the circumnavigation of the globe, by returning home, after completing the duties [123] of these missions, by way of San Francisco, San Diego, and our newly established settlements through the valleys of California.

Need I say how deeply I feel in all matters respecting my own missions, notwithstanding this does not prevent me taking the most lively concern in the welfare and happiness of the numerous conferences of Saints with which I have formed an acquaintance since my labors in the British lsles, and to those and all in the bond of the Spirit, I would with warmest feelings subscribe myself, their brother in the Everlasting Covenant. (Mill. Star 13:362-365)


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The Latter-Day Saint

Franklin D. Richards

January 1, 1852


The Kingdom of God–Revelation and Restitution–Through the kind providence of an Almighty Father we are enabled to engage in the editorial labours of a new volume.  We greet our numerous readers with a Happy New Year, trusting that all Saints have applied the time of the past year so profitably as to be able to look upon it with a great degree of satisfaction, and feel that they are fully prepared to engage in the duties and varied scenes of the future.

Each succeeding year is destined to prove more and more propitious to the work of God, and will introduce events which will arouse the attention of the world to the important fact that the God of heaven is setting up His kingdom on the earth, on so sure a foundation that it shall no more be thrown down, but will break in pieces and consume all other kingdoms and shall stand forever.  Such a kingdom is the only one that man can eternally be saved in–a kingdom that shall stand forever–hence it should be hailed with more than gratitude, with adoration, by every son and daughter of Adam that desired eternal life.

[124]  It is a great privilege which the Saints possess, to be organized as a church among the nations of the earth; but their blessings are far short of what they will enjoy when they fully become members of the kingdom which the Prophet Daniel speaks of.  The Church of God whenever it has been organized has been required to respect and honour the earthly power under which it has existed, and such will continue to be the case whilst it is mixed up among the nations.  But thanks be to God–He has called upon His Saints to gather to a place where they will not only be known as a Church in Christendom, but be recognized as a distinct people, possessing all the rights of a kingdom among the nations of the earth. It is an undeniable fact that the laws and institutions of the governments which are now upon the earth have been formed by men who had not the inspiration and the voice of the Lord as their guide; and the result is not one of them is sufficiently liberal to allow men to walk purely in the light of revelation, whereby all things might be restored which have been spoken of by the prophets since the world began.

It is not consistent that the people of God should always be subject to man-made governments; if it were so, they never could be perfected.  None other than a government under the direction of apostles and prophets is sufficient to perfect mankind; they were given of God for this purpose.  (Ephesians iv).

The whole civilized world deny the right of apostles and prophets to govern mankind; and here is the necessity of God gathering out His people to a place where He can guide them by the voice of those to whom He can reveal all things that ever were or ever will be.  This will give the Kingdom of God the superiority over all other kingdoms, for with it must be associated all knowledge–hence, all power that God ever revealed or gave to man upon the earth; anything less than this would not be a restitution of all things spoken of by the prophets.

The question may be asked, where is this place in which God has purposed that His Saints should become a people and enjoy a people’s rights and privileges?  We answer, it is under the Constitution of the United States, which was framed by men inspired of God, though they [125] heard not his voice.  This Constitution is liberal and God-like; it recognizes no law superior to a man’s religious faith.  A man’s religious faith is the only thing that has a tendency to lead him to his God; and under the rights of the Constitution of the United States, he is untrammelled–he is as free as his God would have him to be; under it there is perfect liberty to bring forth the laws and institutions of Heaven, and to make laws to sustain and defend them, whatever they may be.  Thus it is where the Saints are gathering; the civil law justly becomes their servant, and the laws of God reign supreme under the administration of His prophets as in days of old.  Thus the way is effectually opened, through the mercy and wisdom of God, that His Kingdom may come and His will be done.

Many revelations have been brought forth by the Prophet Joseph and published to the world, which plainly manifests that the work of restoration was through him re-commenced and that he held the keys thereof; that he, like Moses, brought forth the law of God unto the people, which law is to be their wisdom and their understanding in the eyes of the nations when they possess the goodly land.  Perhaps none of those revelations declare more pointedly that we are now actually witnessing the scenes of the dispensation of the fulness of times than that which we have the privilege of presenting before our readers in the present number of The Star.  This truly indicates a gathering together of all things which are in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are in earth–not even excluding the principles and institutions by which our fathers were perfected and in the keeping of which they obtained favour with God.

These things are truly fulfilling the prophecies which the Holy Prophets have spoken since the world began, concerning the Last Days, in the restitution of all things preparatory to the second coming of the Messiah.

This restoration embraces the fulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ as the means by which we can obtain a knowledge of God and of His Son, whom He hath sent, which is Eternal Life–which Gospel is the power of God unto salvation, from all enemies, to every one who believes it.

[126]  The Gospel embraces every institution, every ordinance, and every covenant that has been enjoyed by the people of God in any former dispensation.  The first principles of it have been restored and the ordinances connected therewith; faith and repentance, baptism for the remission of sins, and the gift of the Holy Ghost by the ordinance of laying on of hands, by authorized ministers, are preached in the name of Jesus, and hundreds of thousands have proven them to be true by their own experience.

Other principles and ordinances are as necessary to be believed and observed as those just named in order for a continued salvation and to enable man fully to become one with the Son of God, as he is one with his Father in all things; among which there are none more sacred and holy or more Godlike than the institution of matrimony, by which an eternal relationship is entered into and sealed by the direction and superintendence of the Redeemer of the world, through His legally constituted authorities on earth in Zion!  Through this institution did Abraham inherit the promise, and through it will his seed receive of their father’s inheritance or of the promises made to their fathers.

Jesus plainly declared that the children of Abraham would do the works of Abraham; and if they were Abraham’s seed, then were they heir to the promises.

Let now the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts, and turn unto the Lord, that they may obtain mercy, and to Abraham’s God who alone can pardon.  And we would say to all that have entered into covenant with God: keep His commandments, observe His ordinances, and walk by every word that proceeds from His mouth.  Let not the dust cleave to your feet nor your hands be stained with pollution.  Let not your hearts lead you astray, for the commandment of God is holy: “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife,” nor anything that is thy neighbour’s.

Thanks be to God that through the Gospel of Christ there is one spot on earth where the sanctity of female virtue, freedom in agency, and women’s rights are guarded with holy vigilance; where the licentious cannot profane them with impunity; and where man must learn that [127] virtue and purity in keeping all the commandments of God, is the only condition by which he may hope to receive a place among the hundred and forty and four thousand that shall stand with the Messiah upon Mount Zion, having his Father’s name written in their foreheads.

As the Saints are thus permitted to enter upon a new year with new revelation and new light, which is calculated do inspire new hopes and a more ardent zeal, let it be another assurance to them that unless they renew their energies in keeping the commandments of God and gather into His literal kingdom on earth, they cannot inherit that salvation which He has prepared for those who shall dwell secure in Zion, when the predicted plagues, death, mourning, and famine shall come upon Babylon, and she be utterly burned with fire.  For know ye this, that God has purposed to reward her of all her iniquities.

Because of what is coming upon the earth and is near at hand, the cry is now heard, “Come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.”  The wise and the prudent will foresee the evil and haste to hide themselves; but fools will despise the admonition given them, and put far away the evil day until they are overtaken as a thief in the night; then will they call upon the rocks and the mountains to fall upon them, hide them from the face of Him who is terrible in His fierce anger.

Let Saints be wise and know that wisdom’s ways are ways of peace, and all her paths are pleasantness.  Our earnest prayer is that the year 1852 may be far more propitious to the work of God than any preceding one; that the light and glory of Zion may go forth through the revelations of God and, like the rising sun, continue to shed forth her benign rays until the whole earth is lighted therewith, and every honest soul partakes of the life-giving power.  With an earnest desire to be remembered in the prayers of the faithful everywhere, we feel to dedicate our energies for the coming year to God and His cause, and we trust all Saints will follow our example.  May the salvation of our God ever be round about His people, Amen. (Mill. Star, editorial, vol. 14, pp. 8-10)


[128]                    Proclamation of Thanksgiving

Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

January 1, 1852


Governor B. Young had made a proclamation of thanksgiving for the inhabitants of the Territory of Utah to set apart the 1st day of January for the purpose of thanksgiving and prayer.  The following is a portion of the proclamation:

“And I recommend to all good citizens of Utah that they abstain from everything that is calculated to mar or grieve the spirit of their Heavenly Father on that day.  That they rise early in the morning of the first day of the New Year and wash their bodies with pure water.  That all men attend to their flocks and herds with carefulness and see that no creature in their care is hungry, thirsty, or cold, while the women are preparing the best of food for their households and their children [are] ready to receive it in cleanliness and with cheerfulness.  Then let the head of each family with his family bow down upon his knees before the God of Israel and acknowledge all his sins and the sins of his household, call upon the Father in the name of Jesus for every blessing that he desires for himself, his kindred, the Israel of God, the universe of man–praying with full purpose of heart and united faith that the union of the United States may be preserved inviolate against all the devises of wicked men until truth shall reign triumphant and the glory of Jehovah shall fill the whole earth.  Then in the name of Jesus, ask the Father to bless your food, and when you have filled the plates of your household, partake with them with rejoicing and thanksgiving; and if you feel to make merry in your hearts, sing a song of thanksgiving and lift up your hearts continually in praise and acknowledgement of the unbounded mercies you are momentarily receiving.” (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


[129]                   Sin and the Forgiveness of Sin

Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

January 4, 1852


President Young addressed the assembly and took for his subject “Sin and the Forgiveness of Sin.” I speak upon this subject because we are in the midst of it.  It has been among all classes.  It has been in our houses, in our families, and in our hearts; and although it has been a constant companion, there are but few that understand the nature of sin.  Many have made themselves miserable thinking they had sinned against the Holy Ghost.  Others thought they had sinned a great sin.

But what have the revelations of the Lord said upon these subjects?  We learn that Jesus Christ came and took a body and redeemed the world.  But Lucifer rebelled, was cast down without any body, and he has sought to vex and destroy the children of men.  He seeks diligently to drive all from the right path, especially if a Saint tries to follow the track and get where Jesus was.  Then the Devil would try hard to overthrow them.  Many have thought they have committed much sin when they had not understood the nature and work of sin.  We must understand many principles and arrive at much knowledge before we can fully understand the nature of sin.

The veil of darkness is over the earth so that the inhabitants of the earth are so overwhelmed in tradition and darkness they do not know light from darkness, truth from error, right from wrong, or the difference between the dictation of the Holy Spirit or that conscience which has been framed for them by the dictation of their mothers and priests.  Many think far more of the traditions of their youth than of any principles that God could reveal from heaven unto them.  Their mother must not do anything on Sunday.  To darn a stocking would be a sin.

Sin is one thing and tradition is another.  The word of God revealed will tell what sin is while tradition will not.  The education of the world is good as far as they have any truth found in any science which they possess.  But they do not understand truth as connected with the plan of salvation.

[130]  I want the Saints here to understand that they cannot sin against God and Jesus Christ and the Priesthood, against his family and the Saints, and then come and ask forgiveness of the Church, then pass on smoothly and think we will go to heaven.  This is too cheap a way to get to heaven.  I want this subject riveted on your heart.  If it is not, you will not remember it.  You must remember your covenants and the law of the Lord that is given to us.

It is written that sin is a transgression of the Law.  Where is it?  In the book(s) that are given us in the main.  Yet this does not go into all the meanderings of life.  Where do you find a law that you shall not drive a team across your neighbor’s lot or go to his haystack or suffer your families to take liberties that you are not willing should be done to you?  Yet you know them to be wrong.  But do unto others as you wish others to do unto you is the law and the prophets.

Some men who have been ordained unto the Priesthood and are very high in authority will take the name of God in vain and swear by this and that.  Do such persons suppose that the Church can forgive that sin?  If you do, your hope is vain.  They can never forgive that sin.  No man can do it.  None but God alone, and it never will be forgiven until He does it.  The time will come that if a man will take the name of God in vain, he will be hewn down without judgment or trial.  Hear it, O ye Elders, for it is time.  Let this people sanctify their hearts and then take the name of God in vain, and they will not be forgiven.

The time will also come that if the parents are sanctified before the Lord and their children rise up in disobedience against them, they will be hewn down.  If you sin against God and take the name of God in vain, if you get forgiveness, it will have to be forgiven by Him and not by man.  Some think if they are alone and swear or sin, nobody will know it.  But they will find themselves mistaken.  Still, if a man has to swear, let him be alone.  If a man damns himself, let him be alone–that others may not be polluted by his sin.  If you take the name of God in vain, I will not forgive it, for I cannot.  If the Lord will forgive you, I will forgive you for marring my feelings by speaking it in my ears.

[131]  The more you see the veil parted and the more you learn, the more you will see God’s ways are not as our ways.  This people are passing through a great school of experience.  I remember while in Kirtland, if any of the brethren felt their rights infringed upon in any wise or abused, they would retaliate and be ready to quarrel about it and be ready to get up a lawsuit for a debt of three dollars. But the minds of the Saints have become more noble.  Now if a man is abused who understands principle, he is above quarreling about it and he feels to say it is nothing to me.  I am not to suffer by it.  But you that have abused me have the penalty to pay.  But if the Devil can only make you think that you are abused or ill treated, and you begin to fret about it and you give the Devil power over you, in the end it is as bad as though you had done wrong yourself.  Now if a man sins against you until seventy times seven and he repents and with an humble heart asks forgiveness, you should forgive him for this is the law.  He must ask forgiveness and be humble or he cannot be forgiven.

As much has been said and many fears entertained concerning the sins against the Holy Ghost.  I will speak further concerning that subject.  To sin against the Holy Ghost is a sin against God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost that bears record of them.  A man cannot sin against the Holy Ghost until the Holy Ghost has revealed unto him the Father and Son and a knowledge of eternal things in a great degree.  When he has a knowledge of these things with his eyes open, he rebels against God and defies His power; he sins against all three.

If a man does sin against the Holy Ghost, the people have nothing to do with it, for they cannot forgive that sin, and none but God can do it, and probably He will not in this world nor the world to come for they become sons of perdition and probably will never repent of their sin nor have a disposition to.  If you blaspheme the name of God, don’t ask this people to forgive you for they cannot do it.  You may ask them to pray God to forgive you.  If God does forgive the sin, then you can go down into the waters of baptism.  When you get knowledge, you will be ashamed to sin.

[132]  Now I want to bring this subject home.  What are the acts of the people?  Do they not sin and trespass against their brethren, parents against their children and children against their parents, the husband against the wife, and wife against the husband?  This is with us and this we can reach and manage and tell what ought to be done.  You ought to [cease?] from taking the liberty of any person, but do unto all as you would wish them to do unto you.  Infringe upon the rights of no one.  Borrow no tool but what you will return according to promise.  Take no wood nor anything else but what belongs to you, and if you find anything that is not your own, do not hide it away, but report it that the owner may be found.

If I had some stones here in my hand, I could cast them and hit two or three in this congregation in the head who are guilty of these acts.  You may say, why don’t you tell who they are?  Why, you poor devil, are you not going to repent of it by and by?  If not, when the day of cleansing and sanctifying of Israel comes, you will have to be sacrificed and your blood spilt upon the ground.  For the day will come when iniquity must cease in Zion and the profane man who takes the name of God in vain will be slain.

In the days of ancient Israel, justice was dealt out in a manner that showed they understood principle and revered the commands of God.  It was a mercy to many to have justice and judgment executed upon them on the earth, even to be slain and have their blood poured out upon the earth that it might be tolerable for them.  God made a covenant with Abraham and his seed that He would save them.  When they commit sin, He slew them that He might save them by their spilling their blood as an offering.  Had they have lived in sin, they might have sinned so as not to have been forgiven or saved.  It was a mercy to slay them.

Now, brethren, if you sin against God, go to God to get forgiveness if that sin is not unto death.  There is a sin unto death which we were told we need not pray for.  If you sin against your brother, go to him to get forgiveness.  Ask forgiveness at the hands of the innocent.  If you sin against your family, your parents, your husband, your wife, your children, seek forgiveness at their hands.  But what is done [133] in secret should be forgiven in secret and go no further that sins may be hid.  But if sins are committed openly, they should ask forgiveness and be forgiven openly.  These are true principles and let them be remembered forever. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Governor’s Message

Brigham Young

January 5, 1852


In referring again to subject matter which may be deemed worthy of your consideration, I cannot refrain from first expressing the gratitude of a grateful heart to the Almighty disposer of human events for the continuance of His kind blessings–invoking His wisdom and the intelligence of High Heaven to direct all efforts for the well being of society and guidance of the affairs of men.

When I reflect upon the kind dealing of the God of Israel towards the people which you represent, I am led to the certain conviction that He has held us all in the arms of mercy, and contributed more for our benefit, than we at present can appreciate, or fully understand; acting under this conviction, it well becomes us, first of all, to implore His divine protection and assistance, to sustain, to guide, and direct us in the discharge of those duties which devolve upon us.

We have now commenced a New Year in the midst of recurring events, which have closed the old, and through which she has waded to the fulfillment of her destiny; she has made her mark upon the scroll of fame, whether for high or low estate, subsequent time will develop; happily if so blended therewith are the good and charitable acts of men, as shall leave her escutcheon of the bright and shining lustre, no blot thereon to tarnish, no venom to corrode.

In the discharge of those duties incumbent upon the Executive Department, I have endeavored, while enforcing the salutary restraints of law, to be guided by the spirits of wisdom and forbearance, congenial with the true interpretation of its provisions, observing the rule that it is better to live above law than promote litigation in order to enforce its rigid observance.

[134]  It is highly gratifying to every lover of peace that so few infractions of law have occurred; and those few, although generally of a minor consideration, having met the prompt and energetic exercise of civil jurisprudence, will, it is hoped, ensure future protection and safety from evil practices of wicked and designing men.

I now again suggest that a commission be appointed, not only to gather up and revise the old, but furnish a code of practice for our courts, laws regulating executors and administrators, descent of property, and other laws of a general nature.

It will be observed by reference to the Adjutant General’s Report that the laws regulating the Militia are very deficient; this, in consideration with our depending solely upon our own resources for protection and defense, becomes a matter of considerable importance and should engage your early attention.

I respectfully direct your attention to some of the suggestions contained in that report as being worthy of your consideration, and if they should be found preferable to any other mode, devise such laws and regulations as shall best promote the early and more complete organization and maintaining an efficient military force.

The Department of the Quartermaster and Commissaries of Subsistence, need some more available means in order to supply demands constantly occurring, and the better preservation of the public property.

The judiciary laws, which under our provisional form of government appeared sufficient, are defective under our present territorial organization, being inapplicable in many of their provisions to our present situation.  The same may also be said of the election, revenue, and several other laws.

In relation to the revenue law, I would respectfully suggest that the territorial tax be reduced to barely meet the necessary expenses of the territory, leaving the various counties to provide, under provisions of the proper legislation, for the assessment, collecting, and disbursement of their own tax, as also payment of bounty on fox and wolf pates.

I would also suggest that the County Assessors and Collectors in their respective counties assess property and [135] collect in money, the territorial tax, within some reasonable time during the year, which shall be fixed by law.

When the embarrassments which have been experienced for the want of a little funds, and the very small amount required of each individual for the support of government, is considered, it would seem that no obstacle should hinder the full and prompt discharge of all such requirements.

It cannot be as onerous upon the individual as it is upon those entrusted with the affairs of government, when expected resources based upon mild and equitable law are deficient.  Many of the governmental expenditures under our present organization are defrayed by the general government, yet there are many which they do not provide for.

The legislature have moreover heretofore made appropriations for the encouragement of various manufacturing interests, as also for the encouragement of learning; these appropriations should be met, as all must readily perceive a partial investment made in good faith depending upon the public faith for further supplies, being withheld, involves a loss of funds already invested and proves destructive to the enterprise.  I have no hesitation in saying that our true interest is, and will be most wisely consulted in domestic manufacturing, to the exclusion of almost every article of imported goods; our clothing of every description, sugar, candles, soap, leather, crockery, paper, glass, nails, much of the hardware, castings, steel, and many other articles, for which our merchants continually drain the country of money, might be manufactured just as well at home, within our own limits, thereby furnishing lucrative employment to the many artisans of every description, who are constantly flocking hither, and form the basis of a free and independent State, that can in no other way be accomplished.  In all your deliberations on the many subjects that will present themselves before you, I will venture to say there is none so deeply fraught with every consideration of interest, which so completely pervades every class of our citizens, as also every department of the government.  I do, therefore, most earnestly and sincerely hope that all needful [136] and necessary encouragement may be given in protective legislation, as well as in appropriations, as shall be conducive to the accomplishment of such desirable results.

Closely connected with this subject, is another which has often been a source of reflection to me; throughout my acquaintance in this territory, which is by no means limited, I scarcely know of an apprentice to any trade.  No young mechanics arising to fill the places of those now at labor when they shall have gone to their rest.

Deplorable indeed must be the situation of that people, whose sons are not trained in the practice of every useful avocation, and whose daughters mingle not in the hum of industry.  Far be it from me to accuse this people of any lack of industry, but while every energy is brought into requisition in the most extended labor, it well becomes us to give the proper direction to that labor, to that untiring and preserving effort which so happily characterizes the history of this people.

The enjoyment of a free and independent people can be accomplished only through this principle.  Produce what you consume; draw from the native element the necessities of life; permit no vitiated taste to lead you into the indulgence of expensive luxuries, which can only be obtained by involving yourselves in debt; let home industry produce every article of home consumption.

What has become of the interest that parents should have for their offspring? guardians for their wards?  Do they not know that a useful trade is of more worth to the rising youth than a patrimony?  That it is a patrimony of itself far more noble and benefiting than any other?  That it is the surest road to distinction as well as usefulness that a man can travel?

This subject, of course, belongs more properly to the people as it is for them to act in the premises; nevertheless the legislature may do much by framing wise and salutary laws, in relation to master and apprentice–which shall equally secure the rights and protect the interest of both, while sustaining that relation to each other.

Let the proper direction and encouragement be given to secure these desirable results, and we may reasonably hope, `ere long, to attain to that enviable position, real independence.

[137]  The University, I am happy to say, is in successful operation under the guidance of the Chancellor and Board of Regents, so far as a school can promote its interests, although that institution has suffered in common with other enterprises for the want of the promised aid from the legislature.  The grounds are partly enclosed with a very good stone wall, and a building designed for their temporary use is commenced in the Thirteenth Ward of this city.

The fostering hand of the government could be exercised to no better purpose than providing for the education of the youth.  You are doubtless already sufficiently alive to the importance of this subject, to extend such pecuniary assistance as shall be commensurate with your ability.

In accordance with the resolution of the legislature locating the seat of government at Pauvan Valley, and authorizing me to appoint Commissioners to select a site for the capitol and seat of government, I complied with that requirement by appointing Professors Orson Pratt and Albert Carrington, Jesse W. Fox, Esq., William C. Staines, and Joseph L. Robinson, said Commissioners.  They immediately proceeded to the performance of their duties, and have made their report, which I take great pleasure in presenting to you.

It appears from their observations that the location is far more central than this city, and that the valley will sustain a large and dense population.

The locating of the seat of government in that valley, will, it is believed, encourage settlers to go there, and very much facilitate the settlement of all suitable places in that region.  Under all these considerations, its location at that point appears judicious upon its own merits, and will unquestionably advance the already prosperous and vastly increasing resources of the territory.  At Fillmore City, one wing of the State House will probably be finished for the accommodation of the ensuing legislature.  This will be built with the funds furnished by the general government, for the erection of suitable public buildings at the seat of government.

The practice of purchasing Indian children for slaves is a trade carried on by the Mexican population of New [138] Mexico and California.  These traders of late years have extended their traffic into the limits of this territory.  This trade I have endeavored to prevent; and this fall, happening to encounter a few of them in my travels as Superintendent of Indian Affairs, strictly prohibited their further traffic.  The majority of them appeared satisfied, and after making a few exchanges of property in the settlements, returned to their own country; unfortunately, however, a few of them still determined to carry on their nefarious traffic; they have been arrested and are now on their trial in this city.

It is unnecessary perhaps for me to indicate the true policy for Utah in regard to slavery.  Restrictions of law and government make all servants; but human flesh to be dealt in as property, is not consistent or compatible with the true principles of government.  My own feelings are that no property can or should be recognized as existing in slaves, either Indian or African.  No person can purchase them without their becoming as free, so far as natural rights are concerned, as persons of any other color; under the present low and degraded situation of the Indian race, so long as the practice of gambling away, selling, and otherwise disposing of their children; as also sacrificing prisoners obtains among them, it seems indeed that any transfer would be to them a relief and a benefit.  Many a life by this means is saved; many a child redeemed from the thraldom of savage barbarity, and placed upon an equal footing with the more favored portions of the human race.  If in return for favors and expense which may have been incurred on their account, service should be considered due, it would become necessary that some law should provide the suitable regulations under which all such indebtedness should be defrayed.  This may be said to present a new feature in the traffic of human beings;  it is essentially purchasing them into freedom instead of slavery, but it is not the low, servile drudgery of Mexican slavery to which I would doom them, not to be raised among beings scarcely superior to themselves, but where they could find that consideration pertaining not only to civilized, but humane and benevolent society.

So shall the benevolence of the human heart be called into action, to promote the improvement of the [139] down-trodden race, whose fathers long swayed the destiny of empires; so shall the condition of the poor, forlorn, destitute, ignorant savage, or African, as the case may be, become ameliorated, and a foundation laid for their advancement in the scale of useful, exalting existence–useful to themselves, to their nations, and all who shall come within the purview of their influence.

Thus will a people be redeemed from servile bondage both mental and physical, and placed upon a platform upon which they can build; and extend forth as far as their capability and natural rights will permit; their thraldom will no longer exist, although the seed of Canaan will inevitably carry the curse which was placed upon them, until the same authority which placed it there, shall see proper to have it removed.  Service is necessary; it is honorable; it exists in all countries and has existed in all ages; it probably will exist in some form in all time to come.

It has long since ceased to become a query with me who were the most amenable to the laws of righteousness: those who through the instrumentality of human power brought into servitude human beings, who naturally were their own equals, or those acting upon the principle of nature’s law, brought into this position or situation those who were naturally designed for that purpose, and whose capacities are more befitting that than any other station in society.  Thus, while servitude may and should exist, and that too upon those who are naturally designed to occupy the position of “servant of servants”, yet we should not fall into the other extreme and make them as beasts of the field, regarding not the humanity which attaches to the colored race; nor yet elevate them, as some seem disposed, to an equality with those who Nature and Nature’s God has indicated to be their masters, their superiors; nor yet again drag into servitude through the circumstance of penury or misfortune, those our equals, peradventure of a common parentage with ourselves; but rather let us build upon a foundation which the God of Nature has furnished–observing the law of natural affection for our kind and subserve the interest of our fellows by extending the principles of true liberty to all [140] the children of men, in accordance with the designs of their Creator.

During the past year the settlements have continued to extend until we now have a line extending from near Bear River on the North, unto within about twenty-five miles of the Southern Rim of the Great Basin–a distance of about three hundred and fifty miles; and a company is now forming who design making a settlement near the Santa Clara, far beyond that point; also East and West a few settlements are forming, although not so extensive in those directions.  It is desirable that a settlement should be made on Mary’s River in order to preserve peaceful relations with the Indians in that region.  They have become of late very troublesome to travelers, stealing their animals, robbing and killing them as they have opportunity.  There is a successful settlement now established on the west side of the Tooele, where the Indians had become so troublesome it was feared that none could be maintained.  With the exception of the Indians on Mary’s River, peace prevails among all the tribes towards the whites within this territory, although some few are at war with each other; but as a general thing, peace and quietness prevail among themselves.

This gratifying state of things it is believed is consequent upon the humane and consistent treatment which has always been exercised towards them by the inhabitants of this territory; as also attributable, in part, in strictly enforcing that salutary requirement, which prohibits the introduction of that baneful and highly destructive agent called spiritous liquors into their midst.

We rarely have great cause to congratulate ourselves upon this favorable state of things, in regard to our tawny neighbors; for while peace and quietness are blessings the most to be coveted on one hand, strife, internal commotion, and war often prove the greatest curses which can occur to any people; nevertheless it well becomes us to be ever ready; permit no apparent security which may prove false to lull us into any neglect of our manifest duties in preparing to the extent of our abilities against any emergency that might suddenly arise.

The assessment of taxable property within the territory for the past year, as you will perceive by [141] reference to the Auditor’s Report, herewith presented, shows an assessed value of $1,160,883.80.  This result, in comparison with previous years, shows a rapid increase of the resources of this territory, which properly husbanded and future proportional increase, presents a very favorable prospect for the rapid development, and extension of the energy and enterprise of this young and vigorous territory.

Many are the inducements presented for the investment of money; many an enterprise flattering to the pride of the body politic, is calculated to lead a government into extensive appropriations, based upon a speedy return of capital invested, overflowing coffers, and vastly increasing wealth.  The experience of past events shows that we should be guarded against such visionary problems, to be solved only by the hereditary barter and exchange of alike worthless “promises to pay”.

The revenue under the existing laws, arising upon the foregoing assessment, fines, etc., amounts to the sum of $26,670.58.  Of this amount there has been collected $16,021.92, leaving a deficiency not yet collected of $10,648.66.  Much of this amount will be collected in wheat, as has also been the case with collections already made.  Owing to the present scarcity of money, not over one-tenth of the foregoing amount has been collected in that article.

The expenditures of this territory being incurred principally for improvements, renders the grain currency less inconvenient than would probably be the case, if it had to be devoted to the payment of interest on bonds, or per diem allowance, fees, etc., of officers.  Public services, as usual, are gratuitous, with the exception of those who receive their per diem from the general government.

The taxes of those engaged in suppressing Indian hostilities, have, under the provisions of the present law, in many instances been allowed for services; a small consideration indeed when we consider the nature and amount of service rendered.  Many of those men hold themselves and animals constantly on hand, and are ready to go at a moment’s notice.  Although no other compensation has as yet been paid, yet the amount of expenditures thus incurred, is for the past year $3,457.87.

[142]  The amount paid in bounty for wolf and fox pates during the same time amounts to $2,233; these two items alone are more than one-fifth of the whole amount of revenue, and more than one-third of the whole amount collected.

The same report of the auditor shows that bridges and roads, woollen factory and university, have been paid on appropriations, $4,725.87, which only leaves a balance of a little over $5,000 to defray the expense of printing surveys and various other necessary and inevitable expenses of government; less than one-fourth of the entire amount of tax assessed would ensure to the territory a larger revenue for the ordinary governmental purposes, were there no appropriations for improvements or encouragement afforded to enterprise.  This statement of things should be highly satisfactory to the tax payer–the more especially when he can see the money expended in such a manner as will enhance the value of his own property and prove beneficial to his own convenience and interest.

Gentlemen, representatives and councillors of the people: it is to you we look for wise and salutary laws under the provisions of which we expect to rise and extend forth to the accomplishments of our national destiny.  You have it in your power to influence to a great extent the welfare of the rising state.  Your actions, your maxims, your decisions, will be regarded as precedents; your enactments will go into operation and will shape the course of the body politic; will be the rule of decision of the courts of justice, and will indicate unto all who shall come within the range of our influence for years to come, not only the administration of justice, but the mode and operation of the government itself through the entire extent of the territory.

They will entwine themselves around every interest in society and will be studied by the people as a guide for them to regulate their intercourse with each other.

Ordinarily it has been the custom of the legislature to meet, hurriedly pass a few necessary laws, and then leaving their business half-finished, return to their several homes and avocations, devolving upon others duties that rightfully belong to themselves.  Unquestionably it is [143] meritorious to be industrious in legislation and not to prolong the session longer than absolutely necessary, for this saves time and expense to the government; yet it is equally meritorious to give due consideration to all laws and take sufficient time not only to deliberate upon the various questions which are liable to arise, but become acquainted with all their bearing and probable effect.  Therefore, while I would counsel the due observance of the principles of industry and expeditious legislation, consistent with the faithful discharge of the duties incumbent upon you, yet let that wisdom and care pervade your counsels, which should characterize the acts of all deliberate bodies, that when you shall have adjourned, your business will have been accomplished to your own satisfaction and the satisfaction of all those associated with you.  The Organic Act allows only forty days for one session, ten of which were expended when first convened, leaving only thirty more for the present session.

I would respectfully suggest that the considerations of per diem allowance ought not to weigh in consideration of the faithful discharge of the duties and trusts reposed in us; and the law does not prohibit the call of another session if you should find it necessary to have it prolonged beyond that time.  You are already aware that there are no funds in the territory at the present time designed for, or that can be appropriated for, legislative purposes, yet they will unquestionably be forwarded as soon as circumstances will permit.

Your early attention is solicited to provide by law for the safe keeping, preservation, and disposition of the state library, as I do not wish to curtail the privilege of its use, nor yet feel at liberty to indulge the access of so many applicants lest some injury or loss might occur.  It is my wish that all who desire may be enabled to partake of its benefits without restraint; yet some law regulating its use seems necessary.

Many are the considerations which crowd into the mind upon occasions like this–the more especially to those who by bitter experience can contrast the turbulent past with the peaceful present.  The sound of music is not sweeter to the ear than the breath of freedom inhaled from the mountain breeze.

[144]  Let us be wise stewards over the blessings we enjoy, over the trusts reposed in us, and peace and union dwell in our midst.  May exaltation and perfection crown all our efforts, enabling us to perpetuate unto those who shall come after us the blessings of a free, sovereign and independent government. (Manuscript History of Brigham Young, Church Archives microfilm)


Remarks on Slavery

Brigham Young

January 23, 1852


I have this section in my hand, headed “An Act in Relation to African Slavery.”  I have read it over and made a few alterations.  I will remark with regard to slavery, inasmuch as we believe in the Bible, inasmuch as we believe in the ordinances of God, in the Priesthood and order and decrees of God, we must believe in slavery.  This colored race have been subjected to severe curses, which they have in their families and their classes and in their various capacities brought upon themselves.  And until the curse is removed by Him who placed it upon them, they must suffer under its consequences; I am not authorized to remove it.  I am a firm believer in slavery.

Now to the case before us with regard to slavery, with regard [to] slaves that [are] Africans, or that are English, or that [are] Dutch, or ourselves–I go in for making just such laws as we want upon that matter, independent of any other nation under the heavens; let us do that [which will bring about what] we want to be done regardless of the abuses of despotic governments.  Whether they deem it to be right or wrong is no matter to me, but to do the thing we ought to do, to secure those blessings we are in pursuit of, ought to be the first and most weighty consideration with us; that is my mind upon this matter.  This case comes up and causes feelings of not a pleasing character in the minds of some.

The African enjoys the right of receiving the first principles of the Gospel; this liberty is held out to all these servants.  They enjoy the liberty of being baptized for the remission of sins and of receiving the Holy Ghost by the laying on of hands; they enjoy the privilege of living [145] humbly before the Lord their great Master, so as to enjoy the spirit of the Lord continually.  In short, as far as the common comforts of life, salvation, light, truth, enjoyment, and understanding are concerned, the Black African has precisely the same privilege as the white man.  But they cannot share in the Priesthood; they cannot bear rule; they cannot bear rule in any place until the curse is removed from them; they are a “servant of servants.”  We are servants, as Counselor George Smith has stated; he says he is a slave; he has been driven from his home and his rights–we are all servants.  Now suppose that we should have a servant, and he should be a Negro; it is all right; it is perfectly reasonable and strictly according to the Holy Priesthood.  I loathe the abuses to which the slave in a great many instances is exposed, although as a general thing that part of the Negro race that are in servile bondage, are much more comfortable and better provided for than the lower classes of the nations of Europe.

Though the enlightened nation, England, has abolished slavery in her colonies, yet the most damnable slavery exists at the very heart of the nation.  I am bold to say that you cannot find a Black man or woman in the United States that has traveled through the period of his life in hunger in the midst of plenty.  Yet there are millions upon millions in the cities of Europe who have lived amidst the choicest luxuries of life and died at last in starvation; thousands died of starvation in England the year that I was in that country.  That is meaner slavery than to set them to work in growing cotton and sugar, etc.  I would not wish to go to the enlightened nation of England to know what slavery is because they are so far sunken in iniquity and so deeply degraded.  People contend about it to know what it is; we know it exists, and such a thing shall and will exist until the Lord God shall remove it; until then it will and ought to exist. There are many brethren in the South, a great amount of whose means is vested in slaves.  Those servants want to come here with their masters; when they come here, the Devil is raised.  This one is talking, and that one is wondering.  A strong abolitionist feeling has power over them, and they commence to whisper round their views upon the subject, saying, “Do you think it’s [146] right?  I am afraid it is not right.”  I know it is right, and there should be a law made to have the slaves serve their masters, because they are not capable of ruling themselves.

When the Lord God cursed old Cain, He said, “Until the last drop of Abel’s blood receives the Priesthood, and enjoys the blessings of the same, Cain shall bear the curse;” then Cain is calculated to have his share next and not until then; consequently, I am firm in the belief that they ought to dwell in servitude.

The caption of this bill I don’t like, I have therefore taken the liberty to alter it.  I have said, “An Act in Relation to Manual Service,” instead of “African Slavery.”  I have also altered the latter part of it.  I am willing the bill should be thrown back to be remodeled.

I would like masters to behave well to their servants, and to see that every person in this territory is well used.  When a master has a Negro and uses him well, he is much better off than if he was free.  As for masters knocking them down and whipping them and breaking the limbs of their servants, I have as little opinion of that as any person can have; but good wholesome servitude, I know there is nothing better than that.

Suppose I am in England and bring over 100 persons, males and females, and they pledge themselves to pay me in labour, but as soon as they arrive here they refuse to abide by their contract and turn around and abuse their benefactors.  See the abuse that Dan Jones has received, who prevailed upon Sister Lewis to spend almost every dime she possessed to help individuals to this place; they curse both her and him and this they will continue to do, waxing worse and worse until they go down to hell (I say they ought to be her servants).  Many more such cases could be brought to bear.  There should be a law to govern this, that those who have made contracts to labour, may [be induced to] perform their labours according to said contracts. (Manuscript History of Brigham Young, Church Archives microfilm)


[147]                Legislative Remarks by Brigham Young

February 4, 1852


I arise to make an apology for scolding a little this morning.  I ask your pardon. I am accused by our honorable judges who have left this territory last fall of entering into the Legislative Hall and there dictating them.  That is an objection that will be raised and will be presented to President Fillmore, that I enter into the Hall of the Legislature and there dictate them.  I do dictate and I never expect to see the day while I am governor amongst this people that I don’t do it, and I want it published abroad, for it is what I believe in and it is what you believe in.

But the principle that I have in my mind, that I do want these gentlemen to realize, to be fully sensible of, is simply this: that when they meet there in a legislative capacity, not to forget that they are Elders in Israel, Apostles of the Lord Jesus Christ, that they are Saints of the Most High God, and I hope and pray that a feeling to the contrary of this may never arise in the bosom of any one of these men.  Yet it is visible to me that when this Legislative Assembly assemble here, that they must bring up the technicalities of law; these are in their feelings, this gentilism sticks out here; it is “my authority”, “my right”, “my honor”, “my per diem”, and “my name”, just as though they were after the gold of this world, that I do see here.  If we were one as we were two years ago, or a year and a half ago, when we met in a legislative capacity, a different spirit would be manifest.  We then legislated for the benefit of the inhabitants of the State of Deseret.  The most of them belonged to the council that is called the Council of Fifty.  You walk in there and see if the spirit would arise there, as we have frequently seen in this legislative body.

What is the reason why members cannot act with the same spirit of the Lord here, instead of calculating to draw all their support and succor and influence and great power from the government of the United States.  If their nose were clean enough to smell a stink, you would be a stink in their nostrils.  When men come here, I want to see them act just as we said we would act, “in the name of Israel’s God;” and I want all senators, and governors, and [148] representatives, and kings, and potentates of the earth, to know that the legislative body of the Territory of Utah, legislate in the name of Israel’s God for the benefit of Israel, and we want all creation to know it.  What is disgusting to me, is to see the technical gentile spirit arise here; it makes me scold, and when I scold, I want you to forgive me.  Scores and scores of times I want to speak when I won’t say a word.  It is your privilege to criticize and examine technically all matters that may come before you.  But there is a spirit like this, “I will find fault with you and with your bill and with your doing; there is a defect in your acts, etc.”, and who can mend it? When men arise and do the best they can, and act with all the integrity of their hearts, and when they present their doings before you and have them found fault with, and found fault with again and again, without making it any better, or even making a single suggestion to better their doings, it is a gentile spirit to me.

I make also with the apology, my amendments to my exhortation, and the Lord being my helper, I will come in here and preach to you, and it is not for anyone to call it in question what we do here.  We are legislating for the people here and not for the people in Washington.  We are legislating for our own advancement in the religion we profess; it is for the benefit of Israel we are legislating.  It is our right to come here, and if we have a mind to give time to any of the Brethren to preach a sermon, it is nobody’s business, and if we say, “Brethren, let us get the spirit,” it is nobody’s business; and we are not to be called in question upon the subject.

We are legislating for all the world, that people of all nations may find a shelter here, no matter what they worship; if they worship the sun, or the moon, or the stars, or a log of wood, or a dog, or any animal–that is what their Legislative Counsel is for; it is to make laws and make resolutions to protect them in their rights and privileges.  The government of the United States have erred in this matter with regard to the Mormons.  They have endeavored to make us act as they act, and to worship as they worship.  That is not according to the Constitution.  It says the Jew shall have the right to worship according to the dictates of his conscience; it holds out the same [149] privilege to the Roman Catholic, to the Hotentot, to the Hindoo, and to every class upon the face of the earth, with their various religions and methods of worship.  This Constitution the United States have trampled under their feet, but it is for us to make laws and to legislate for the benefit and protection of every class of the human family no matter what their religious views and to see that these rights be held sacred to them.  I hope if the brethren cannot pray enough at home, they will come here and pray and fast, and it is nobody’s business, and you may have our clerk put it on the docket if you please, that this legislature fasted and prayed. I would like it to be published in that book which is going to be published to all the world by and by (Rev. 20:12).  I am not ashamed that I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and that I pray to Him for heavenly wisdom, and I want all the world to know it.  They may send another governor here, but I shall govern the people by the eternal Priesthood of the Son of God; and if I was the President of the Untied States and could have my way, the Lord Almighty should be honored, and His ways and works should be honored by calling to Him for wisdom.  That is my exhortation.  I would like to have it written right down that the governor came in here and preached to you that you might have the spirit of wisdom and legislate for the good of Israel in all matters.

No man got up to talk until I got up.  Then Brother Pratt got up and motioned that the rules be suspended and the bill put through.  Why did he do this?  It was to stick his thumb into me.  I am willing that all men should serve God more than I do, but I am satisfied if I serve Him according to the best ability I possess–I do not like such things.  I like to see the brethren sound everything that should be sounded.  I like to see them technical when they should be technical, but I do not like to see them get up here and talk for the mere sake of talking.  Some men have got the idea that they can make a smart speech, while there are other members who sit still and say nothing.  There is Edwin D. Woolley, for instance, he is smart to talk, and what does he bring forth?  A mouse!!  Again there is Brother Rockwood; he is just like a hornet, “we’ll gouge it, we’ll gouge it,” he just acts so.

[150]  Who does not know that the Nauvoo Legion has been here?  A man can argue himself to know nothing; he can argue away what he did know.  The sectarian world have read the Bible until they do not know what is in it; are you not my witnesses to the truth of this saying?  You are.  How many times have you read the Bible to them and they would say, “it is not in the Bible.”  You are reading in the Book of Mormon, and Deacons and Priests and Elders all would unite in saying, “I do not believe a word of it; it is a pack of nonsense.”  Why do they say this?  Because they supposed it was in the Book of Mormon, while at the same time you are reading out of King James translation.  I know that men can argue themselves so far that the natural common endowments of the Almighty upon them are laid beneath their feet.  It is good to be careful and receive all things in their proper bearings, and try to get understanding of it, and know what is going to be done, and where you see a

thing can be bettered, better it; and if you cannot better it, let it alone.

I will say a word upon the bill on the table, and the nature of government officers.  The President of the United States appointed you a governor here; he was not appointed for the Territory of Oregon.  He appointed that man precisely as the governor of the people of Utah Territory, and is not his interest and your interest connected here with this appointment?  I was appointed governor of the people of the Utah Territory and no where else.  There the governor acts as governor.  There the states attorney acts in his office; there the marshall acts as marshall; can these officers act anywhere else?  They cannot; they are officers appointed especially for the people of this territory of the United States.  Is there interest anywhere else?  It is not.  I do not profess to know much about the technicalities of Law, but I look at the bearings and nature of things.  With regard to this bill you are getting up here, I wish to ask a question–if we cannot legislate for the two different courts here: the district court and the supreme court?  I also want to know if we cannot tell what fees men shall have that sit on juries?  Suppose a dozen men be called in to sit in the United States Supreme Court here; is there any law that specifies how much they shall have per diem?  The Organic Act says [151] nothing about it, neither does the Constitution of the United States say anything about it.  In the State of New York, jurymen had one bit a day, and 25 cents for mileage; no matter how far they had to travel, they had only 25 cents for the whole journey.  The Legislature of New York made that law; it was made in the Senate or Congress.  In all such matters it is our prerogative to act.

The court has a right to call upon the marshall of his territory and other officers.  He calls them into his court and acts there.  Who has a right to tell how much that man shall have?  I will refer you to a case at the time Judge Brandenbury was here before whom, as judge of the Supreme Court, a number of cases came.  A difference of opinion in the judges with regard to fees that should be allowed to clerks of the Supreme Court arose, but they could not for the life of them say what to allow them.  Says Brandenbury, “I allow you so much.”  What did Judge Snow say here the other day on the same subject?  Says he, “I have to almost assume the capacity of a legislative body; I have to decide how much shall be allowed to the sheriff or to the constables.”  Brother Appleby, who was clerk of that court, can tell you all about it if you doubt my word.

I will tell you what alludes to the United States.  Now when this people or any individual shall rise up and write against the government of the United States, or if a foreign invasion should take place and any individual in this territory shall give the invaders aid or comfort, or be selling to the enemy provisions, instruct them how to [move] into the Territory, or aid or abet them in any way, this is a treasonable act; this is wrong by the Constitution of the United States.  The United States court then has jurisdiction, for the man offending must be tried in a United States court.  Then it is provided precisely what shall be paid in that court; but as to what shall be paid in the courts of this territory, there is no law upon the subject.  And when there is no law, we have a right to make it all the time.  As to the salaries of the officers of the court, it is not specified; we cannot find out what they shall have by referring to the Organic Act. (Manuscript History of Brigham Young, Church Archives microfilm)


[152]                     Speech to the Legislature

on Slavery and Priesthood

Brigham Young

February 5, 1852


I rise to make a few remarks.  The items before the house I do not understand.

The principle of slavery I understand, at least I have self-confidence enough and confidence enough in God to believe I do.  I believe still further that a great many others understand it as I do.  A great portion of this community have been instructed and have applied their minds to it, and as far as they have, they agree precisely in the principles of slavery.  My remarks in the first place will be upon the cause of the introduction of slavery.  Long ago mama Eve, our good old mother Eve, partook of the forbidden fruit and this made a slave of her.  Adam hated very much to have her taken out of the garden of Eden, and now our old daddy says, I believe I will eat of the fruit and become a slave, too.  This was the first introduction of slavery upon this earth; and there has not been a son or daughter of Adam from that day to this but what were slaves in the true sense of the word.

That slavery will continue until there is a people raised up upon the face of the earth who will contend for righteous principles, who will not only believe in but operate with every power and faculty given to them to help to establish the Kingdom of God, to overcome the devil, and drive him from the earth; then will this curse be removed.  This was the starting point of slavery.

Again, after Adam and Eve partook of the curse, we find they had two sons, Cain and Abel, but which was the oldest I cannot positively say; but this I know: Cain was given more to evil practices than Abel, but whether he was the oldest or not matters not to me.  Adam was commanded to sacrifice and offer up his offerings to God that placed him into the garden of Eden.  Through the faith and obedience of Abel to his Heavenly Father, Cain become jealous of him, and he laid a plan to obtain all his flocks; for through his perfect obedience to Father he obtained more blessings than Cain; consequently he took it into his heart to put Abel [out] of his mortal existence.  After the [153] deed was done, the Lord inquired for Abel and made Cain own what he had done with him.  Now, says the grandfather, I will not destroy the seed of Michael and his wife, and Cain, I will not kill you nor suffer anyone else to kill you, but I will put a mark upon you.  What is that mark?  You will see it on the countenance of every African you ever did see upon the face of the earth or ever will see.  Now I tell you what I know: when the mark was put upon Cain, Abel’s children were in all probability young; the Lord told Cain that he should not receive the blessings of the Priesthood, nor his seed, until the last of the posterity of Abel had received the Priesthood, until the redemption of the earth.  If there never was a prophet or apostle of Jesus Christ [that] spoke it before, I tell you, this people that are commonly called Negroes are the children of old Cain.  I know they are; I know that they cannot bear rule in the Priesthood, for the curse on them was to remain upon them until the residue of the posterity of Michael and his wife receive the blessings the seed of Cain would have received had they not been cursed, and hold the keys of the Priesthood until the times of the restitution shall come, and the curse be wiped off from the earth and from Michael’s seed.  Then Cain’s seed will be had in remembrance and the time come when the curse should be wiped off.

Now, then, in the Kingdom of God on the earth, a man who has the African blood in him cannot hold one jot nor tittle of Priesthood.  Why?  Because they are the true eternal principles the Lord Almighty has ordained, and who can help it?  Men cannot, the angels cannot, and all the powers of earth and hell cannot take it off; but thus saith the Eternal I am, what I am, I take it off at my pleasure, and not one particle of power can that posterity of Cain have until the time comes that says he will have it taken away.  That time will come when they will have the privilege of all we have the privilege of and more.  In the Kingdom of God on the earth the Africans cannot hold one particle of power in government.  The subjects, the rightful servants of the residue of the children of Adam, and the residue of the children through the benign influence of the spirit of the Lord have the privilege of seeing to the posterity of Cain; inasmuch as it is the Lord’s will they [154] should receive the spirit of God by baptism, and that is the end of their privilege; and there is not power on earth to give them any more power.

You talk of the dark skin.  I never saw a white man on earth.  I have seen persons whose hair came pretty nigh being white, but to talk about white skins, it is something entirely unknown, though some skins are fairer than others.  Look at the black eye and the jet black hair we often see upon men and women who are called white; there is no such things as white folks.  We are the children of Adam, who receive the blessings, and that is enough for us if we are not quite white.

But let me tell you further, let my seed mingle with the seed of Cain, and that brings the curse upon me and upon my generations; we will reap the same rewards with Cain.

In the Priesthood I will tell you what it will do.  Were the children of God to mingle their seed with the seed of Cain it would not only bring the curse of being deprived of the power of the priesthood upon themselves but they entail it upon their children after them, and they cannot get rid of it.  If a man in an unguarded moment should commit such a transgression, if he would walk up and say cut off my head, and kill man, woman and child it would do a great deal towards atoning for the sin.  Would this be to curse them?  No, it would be a blessing to them; it would do them good that they might be saved with their brethren.  A man would shudder should they hear us talk about killing folk, but it is one of the greatest blessings to some to kill them, although the true principles of it are to [be] understood.

I will add one thing more.  It is not in the power of a man on the face of the earth to take more life than he can give; that is a proper son of Adam.  How many times I have heard it said and how many times has it been reiterated in my ears, and in yours, that to take a life, is to take what you cannot give.  This is perfect nonsense.  What do I do by taking as manÕs head off after he is condemned by the law?  I put an end to the existence of the mortal tabernacle, but the life still remains.  The body and the spirit are only separated; this is all that can be done by any mortal man upon the face of the earth.

[155]  Can I give that life?  I can!  I can make as good tabernacles as any other man, and if you do not believe it, go and look at my children; therefore, that saying is nonsense.  We form the tabernacle for the eternal spirit of life that comes from God.  We can only put an end to the existence of that tabernacle, and this is the principle of sacrifice.

What was the cause of the ancients drawing up hundreds and thousands of bullocks, and heifers, and lambs, and doves, and almost every other creature around them, of which they took the best and the fattest, and offered them up as sacrifices unto the Lord.  Was it not for the remission of the sins of the people?  We read also in the New Testament that a man was sacrificed for the sins of the people.  If he had not shed that blood which was given to him in the organization of his body or tabernacle, you and I could have had no remission of sins.  It is the greatest blessing that could come to some men to shed their blood on the ground, and let it come up before the Lord as an atonement.  You nor I cannot take any more life than we can give.

Again to the subject before us, as to the men bearing rule–not one of the children of old Cain have one particle of right to bear rule in government affairs from first to last; they have no business there.  This privilege was taken from them by their own transgressions, and I cannot help it; and should you or I bear rule, we ought to do it with dignity and honor before God.

I am as much opposed to the principle of slavery as any man.  In the present acceptation or usage of the term, it is abused.  I am opposed to abusing that which God has decreed, to take a blessing, and make a curse of it.  It is a great blessing to the seed of Adam to have the seed of Cain for servants, but those they serve should use them with all the heart and feeling, as they would use their own children, and their compassion should reach over them and round about them, and treat them as kindly, and with that humane feeling necessary to be shown to mortal beings of the human species.  Under these circumstances their blessings in life are greater in proportion to those who have to provide the bread and dinner for them.

[156]  We know there is a portion of inhabitants of the earth who dwell in Asia that are Negroes and said to be Jews.  The blood of Judah has not only mingled almost with all nations, but also with the blood of Cain, and they have mingled their seeds together.  These Negro Jews may keep up all the outer ordinances of the Jewish religion, they may have their sacrifices, and they may perform with you, but the day they consented to mingle their seed with Canaan, the Priesthood was taken away from Judah, and that portion of Judah’s seed will never get any rule or blessings of the Priesthood until Cain gets it.  Let this church which is called the Kingdom of God on the earth: we will summons the First Presidency, the Twelve, the High Counsel, the Bishopric, and all the Elders of Israel, suppose we summons them to appear here, and here declare that it is right to mingle our seed with the Black race of Cain, that they shall come in with us and be partakers with us of all the blessings God has given to us.  On that very day, and hour we should do so, the priesthood is taken from this church and kingdom and God leaves us to our fate.  The moment we consent to mingle with the seed of Cain, the Church must go to destruction; we should receive the curse which has been placed upon the seed of Cain, and never more be numbered with the children of Adam who are heirs to the priesthood until that curse be removed.

Therefore, I will not consent for one moment to have an African dictate me or any brethren with regard to church or state government.  I may vary in my view from others, and they may think I am foolish in the things I have spoken and think that they know more than I do, but I know [that] I know more than they do.  If the Africans cannot bear rule in the church of God, what business have they to bear rule in the state and government affairs of this territory or any others?

In the government affairs of states and territories and kingdoms, by right God should govern.  He should rule over nations and control kings.  If we suffer the Devil to rule over us, we shall not accomplish any good.  I want the Lord to rule and be our governor and dictator, and we are the boys to execute [it].  I shall not consent for a moment to give way to a gentile spirit of contention, which is the [157] cause of angry ________(?) difference to the alienation of every good feeling.  It is for you and I to take a course to bind our feelings together in an everlasting bond of union inasmuch as we love the Lord, which we ought to do more than selves.  Consequently, I will not consent for a moment to have the children of Cain rule me nor my brethren.  No, it is not right.

But, say some, is there anything of this kind in the Constitution the U.S. has given us?  If you will allow me the privilege [of] telling right out, it is none of their damned business what we do or say here.  What we do it is for them to sanction, and then for us to say what we like about it.  It is written right out in the Constitution, “that every free white male inhabitant above the age of twenty-one years”, etc.  My mind is the same today as when we were pouring over that constitution; any light upon the subject is the same, my judgment is the same, only a little more so.

Perhaps I have said enough upon this subject.  I have given you the true principles and doctrine.  No man can vote for me or my brethren in this territory who has not the privilege of acting in church affairs.  Every man and woman and child in this territory are citizens; to say the contrary is all nonsense to me.  The Indians are citizens, the Africans are citizens, and the Jews that come from Asia, that are almost entirely of the blood of Cain.  It is our duty to take care of them and administer to them in all the acts of humanity and kindness.  They shall have the right of citizenship, but shall not have the right to dictate in church and state matters.

The abolitionists of the East have caressed them and their whole argument is calculated to darken counsel as it was here yesterday.  As for our bills passing here, we may lay the foundation for what?  For men to come here from Africa or elsewhere by hundreds of thousands.  When these men come here from the islands, are they going to hold offices in government?  No.  It is for men who understand the knowledge of government affairs to hold such offices, and on the other make provisions for them to plow and to reap and enjoy all that human beings can enjoy, and we protect them in it.

[158]  Do we know how to ameliorate the condition of these people?  We do.  Suppose that five thousands of them come from the Pacific Islands and ten or fifteen thousands from Japan or from China.  Not one of them would know how to vote for a government officer.  They, therefore, ought not in the first thing have anything to do in government affairs.

What the gentiles are doing, we are consenting to do.  What we are trying to do today is to make the Negro equal with us in all our privilege.  My voice shall be against [it] all the day long.  I shall not consent for one moment.  I will call them a counsel.  I say I will not consent for one moment for you to lay a plan to bring a curse upon this people.  It shall not be while I am here. (Manuscript History of Brigham Young, Church Archives microfilm)


Brigham Young’s Speech to the Legislature

(as reported by Wilford Woodruff)

February 5, 1852


He remarked that the whole world were slaves.  Eve partook of the forbidden fruit and also Adam, and it brought slavery upon all their posterity in some way or other, and this will continue until we become righteous enough to drive the Devil and evil from the earth.

Adam had two sons: Cain and Abel.  Cain was more given to evil than Abel.  Adam was called to offer sacrifice–also his sons; the sacrifice of Abel was more acceptable than Cain’s, and Cain took it into his heart to put Abel out of the way, so he killed Abel.  The Lord said I will not kill Cain, but I will put a mark upon him, and it is seen in the face of every Negro on the earth.  And it is the decree of God that that mark shall remain upon the seed of Cain (and the curse) until all the seed of Abel should be redeemed; and Cain will not receive the Priesthood or salvation until all the seed of Abel are redeemed.  Any man having one drop of the seed of Cain in him cannot hold the Priesthood, and if no other prophet ever spake it before, I will say it now–in the name of Jesus Christ, I know it is true, and others know it!  The Negro cannot hold one particle of government.  But the day will come when [159] all the seed of Cain will be redeemed and have all the blessings we have now and a great deal more.  But the seed of Abel will be ahead of the seed of Cain to all eternity.

Let me consent today to mingle my seed with the seed of Cain, it would bring the same curse upon me and it would upon any man.  And if any man mingle his seed with the seed of Cain, the only way he could get rid of it or have salvation would be to come forward and have his head cut off and spill his blood upon the ground; it would also take the life of his children.

It is said if a man kills another, that he takes that that he cannot give.  If a man’s head is cut off, his life is not destroyed, nor his spirit that lives; his tabernacle is destroyed. But I can make as good tabernacles as I can destroy–if you do not believe it, look at my children.

Much blood was shed in ancient days both of man and beast.  The firstlings and best of the flock were sacrificed on the altar, and in some instances many men and almost whole nations were sacrificed or put to death because of their sins and wickedness.  This was the only way they could be saved at all.  If Jesus Christ had not had His blood shed–the blood that he received from his mother, Mary–the world would not have been saved.

There is not one of the seed of old Cain that is permitted to rule and reign over the seed of Abel, and you nor I cannot help it.  Those that do bear rule should do it in righteousness.  I am opposed to the present system of slavery.  The Negro should serve the seed of Abraham–but it should be done right–don’t abuse the Negro and treat him cruel.

It has been argued here that many of the Jews were Black.  Whenever the seed of Judah mingled with the seed of Cain, they lost their Priesthood and all blessings. As an example–let the Presidency, Twelve, Seventies, High Priests, Bishops, and all the Authorities say, now we will all go and mingle with the seed of Cain and they may have all the privileges they want.  We lift our hands to heaven in support of this–that moment we lose the Priesthood and all blessings, and we would not be redeemed until Cain was. I will never admit of it for a moment.

Some may think I don’t know as much as they do, but I know that I know more than they do! The Lord will [160] watch us all the time.  The Devil would like to rule part of the time, but I am determined he shall not rule at all, and Negroes shall not rule us. I will not admit of the Devil ruling at all–I will not consent for the seed of Cain to vote for me or my brethren.  If you want to know why we did not speak of it in the Constitution, it was because it was none of their business.  Any man is a citizen, Black, White, or Red; and if the Jews come here with a part of the Canaanite blood in them, they are citizens and shall have their rights, but not to vote for me or my brethren.  Those persons from the islands and foreign countries know nothing about governing the people.  The Canaanite cannot have wisdom to do things as the white man has.  We must guard against all evil.  I am not going to let this people damn themselves as long as I can help it. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Address by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

February 8, 1852


We are subject to all the evils which are in the world.  I have thought this world was as fallen as any of the creations of God.  When the Lord created the earth or any world, if they have an exaltation, they will have to experience all that we experience.  I see no reason why they should not be tempted as we are tempted.

If we are candidates to exaltation and glory, and we can get that exaltation and glory in no other way, then we should be reconciled to it and be satisfied to let the Lord do with us as He pleases.  Is there any evil upon any _______(?) person or affliction upon any nation or kingdom that God does not permit?  There is not.  We should then be faithful to God in all things–to be His secret counselor if necessary.  Why should we complain or find fault with God about anything?  We should not.  So the example of the nations of the earth; they complain about everything and against all his providences.

There is no proceeding of ours or act ________(?) at variance but what He knows all about.  If it would be any satisfaction to you, I would say that God has passed through all the trials and experience that we have.  Jesus [161] Christ has passed through all the trials and experience the same as we have.  It would not be prudent for me to say that the Father has not the same experience that His Son had.  He had quite as much as his Son had.  Let the Saints look about themselves and see if they have as great things as they expected when they first received the Gospel and the Holy Ghost upon their minds.  They saw that Zion was to [be] built up and Israel gathered, the power of God and the Holy Ghost to be poured out upon us.  If we could get a place by ourselves, how faithful we would live and thank God.  Do you have the same things you look for?  Well, I don’t know, you say.  This shows that somebody has let down their watch and influenced others and they have not lived up to their privileges.  When we first received the Gospel, we were humble, but since the tempter has come and we are tempted with many things.  But this is right.  The Lord permits it.  We could not get glory without it.

Let me ask if anyone is here who went to Jackson County in 1831.  The

feeling was if I could get with the Saints, all my sorrow and trouble would be at an end.  So it is with the Saints in England.  Before we preached the gathering to them, the Lord revealed to them that they would be gathered.  We told them not to reveal it until the time came.  Do you have anything now that you looked for in the beginning?  If not, something is the matter.  You don’t do right.  You don’t settle this difficulty or that.

But what is the matter?  You are wrong yourself.  What hinders you from praying all day and fasting and prayer?  You have enough to eat.  But the great difficulty is when they moved to Zion, they brought themselves with them. You had so many devils in you that they trouble you.  When the Devil and wicked men have afflicted and persecuted us as far as is for our good, then the Lord says, stop and go no further.  They are held up.  But if we take everything patiently, all our afflictions will work together for our good.

But do you at the present time have anything to mar your peace except what you bring upon yourselves?  You have privileges here, but do the people prize their privileges?  Why do the people go to the canyons after wood on Sunday?  Why have they gone today?  Why don’t I do it?  Why do I not visit my farm or the bath house on Sunday? [162] Because it is not right and sets a bad example.  I cannot do these things on the Sabbath.  Some will take poles off from his neighbor’s farm, take a chain or an ox without liberty.  This is wrong.

There is nothing on earth to mar our peace but our own [acts?] But the great difficulty is they cannot get away from themselves.  They think perhaps if they go to the gold diggings, they can get away from themselves, but they cannot.  When persecution and trials come, they search the good seed and it dries up.

How are you going to get Zion?  Nothing hinders our having Zion but ourselves.  We have all the privileges of angels to worship God and get all blessings we need.  We mean to war with all the Devil’s temptations and trials until we overcome.  I will fight until I overcome.  If I fall in the grave, there are others who will take my place.  There are many who will fight and if it needs be, we will take the sword.  I hope all who want good principles will have the privilege of receiving them.  Today is a day of tithing and sacrifice.  Tomorrow cometh the burning.

I would say that you cannot be perfect without me nor I without you.  The providences of God have so interwoven and identified the interest of the children of Adam together that they cannot be perfect without each other.

Do you enjoy yourselves and have peace?  I have peace and no man can take it from me.  If you do not have peace, it is because you drive st[akes?], and the Lord will not let you do it.  But let the will of God be done.  If you don’t enjoy Zion, it is because you don’t say let the will of God be done.  There is nothing to take your Zion away but yourselves.  We are to be tried and tempted in every way in order to prove ourselves the friend of God in all things and God will bless you.

My prayer is that God will bless this people and that they may be faithful and a friend to God.  I told the Legislature that I would be proud to have the world know that I told the assembly to fast and pray until they get the spirit of God to do their duty.  I would like to see the judges upon the bench to ask God to bless them and all the jury and witnesses to assist them in all their testimony and decisions. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


[163]                   Remarks on Life and Salvation

Brigham Young

February 22, 1852


I hope the congregation will be as comfortable as possible.  I arise to address the congregation on the subject of life and salvation–as to which particular portion of the subject, it mattereth not to me.  We have the privilege of growing in knowledge, in light, and in intelligence; and as light and intelligence do increase, so power increases to the creature.  There are portions more interesting than others for the time being, but all the parts and portions of life and salvation are equally valued when [weighed] in the scales of justice.  We learn but little at a time.  [This is especially so when viewed] in comparison to [the totality of] that [which] we do learn; and what is the reason for it?  [It is because our spirits are interwoven and bound down with the flesh.]  We hardly give it a second thought; we consider it unnecessary to adopt in our lives and actions.  The child cannot learn the spelling book in a day or in a week, neither can the student understand all the branches of mathematics in a week or in a year.  Our bodies are of the earth, earthly; we naturally feel a little more sleep and a little more slumber.

Our spirits are as active as celestial beings, but they are inseparably connected with our bodies.  When the intelligent portion stretches forth for knowledge, our bodies are slow to comprehend.  It is within our comprehension that our bodies encumber our spirits; if our spirits are disquieted, the body is affected; if the heart is affected or if the body becomes weary, the spirit becomes weary and fatigued also; it is exemplified every day in the human life.  I say to you, although you do not learn all in one day, do not be discouraged; learn as fast as you can and be diligent and you will understand all you desire to.  How frequently we see persons discouraged because they cannot learn all they desire–how little do we comprehend of the things that we ought to know.  This you know by your comprehension–how little we know of eternal things.  We are the effect of wisdom because we don’t understand the origin, the beginning, or the cause that produces the effect; that is why I have said and still [164] say there is no such thing as a miracle–only to the ignorant.  Every phenomenon that we see or hear has an original cause and is regulated by Him who has infinite wisdom and who can apply the same.  I apply the same to you; if you are not comfortable in your bodies, you do not learn what is now told you.

I contemplate our situation: a great many reflections pass through my mind daily, and I sometimes marvel why we do not understand more; we should know how to perfect ourselves.  As to the written word, there is a sufficiency written, if we can only understand the light and the intelligence that gave them.  We may be flooded with revelation; we may be overwhelmed in it, but we can never make ourselves perfect by it unless we realize the intelligence that gave it.  Suppose we were to summons all the Saints from the days of Adam to the present time; every son and daughter of Adam would tell you they had to keep the same spirit, the same light which came from the author and bring their bodies into subjection of the Law of Christ or they would never have obtained eternal life.  There is not one person that will ever enter into the Celestial Kingdom unless they can bring into subjection the whole man to the Law of Christ.  It is our imperative duty to humble ourselves and bow before the Lord and cling unto Him until we obtain the Spirit, or we shall have to enter into another Kingdom.  There are those degrees of Kingdoms written in the revelations–Kingdom upon Kingdom, and Kingdoms upon Kingdoms, innumerable–prepared for every grade of intelligence, that they may receive that that is applicable to them.  For us there are kingdoms, thrones, powers, principalities, dominions, immortality and eternal lives, and all the privileges and blessings of eternity are for this people if they will live for them.

Will this people be filled with covetousness or with lust, or any of the strategies of the Fallen One, or satisfied with anything less then the presence of God sitting on the throne?  Will you yield yourself to anything less than the Celestial Kingdom?  We have the laws and revelation and the words, and the way to lead us directly to the Celestial gate, to powers and glories and exaltation, even to become Gods, the Sons of God.

[165]  I have many reflections; when I see this people and view their narrow contractedness.  Where is their compassion?  Where is their life and their excellency of the spirit to beget us anew and make us heirs of salvation?  I feel myself disgraced and I feel to hide myself.  I do not wonder at it, but when your ears understand and I comprehend the love of God and His kind parental feelings towards the creatures on the worlds which He has made, how is it possible that I can ever suffer the spirit of wrath to harbor within me for a moment?  I am under the necessity to acknowledge that I am made subject to vanity like yourselves.  Then let every heart be full of compassion for each other, and when judgment can no longer be stayed, when judgment and justice are to be laid to the line, every heart that is righteous will cleave unto the right and the unrighteous will cleave to the unrighteous and ________(?) absolute as the God that sat upon the thrones and judge them.  Then let us sanctify ourselves before the Lord and be prepared for a Celestial Kingdom.  We believe we are in a world of sin and darkness, we are made subject to all the vanities of the world. The world is the same, and God is the same, Lucifer is the same, the lusts of the world are the same, and we are subject to all of them.

We behold ourselves a mixed multitude.  There has been many times a separation between the world and the people of God, and you know that when the people of the Lord are on the earth, the Lord and the powers of the enemy draw the division line; they cannot associate together; this is why we are separated from the other portions of mankind–the same as it was in the days of Abraham.  Christ and Baal never can be friends.  We have never seen it and we never shall, yet we often see persons who will say: “How do you do, Brother Christ?”, and “How do you do, Brother Devil?”, and endeavor to bring them together, but they cannot do it.  Have you not seen this ever since the Kingdom of Christ has been upon the earth?  It is this that causes collisions among the people.  Christ Himself says, “I have no lot or anything to do with the Devil–I have nothing in him”–and when He was going to be crucified, He said, “I have no power or lot in him.”  It is the same in our day.  We cannot mix together; this is the [166] reason we are distinguished by the titles of Jew and Gentile.

Why did the Lord love Jacob and not Esau?  It was because he knew that Esau would sell his birthright for a good dinner, and when Esau saw Jacob going past him with a mess of pottage in his hands, he said? “Come here, Jake; give me that mess of pottage, and I will give you my birthright”; and it has been the same when the Jew was commanded.

Some say, Oh how I love Mormonism, but my farm is not large enough; I will go to the gold mines that I may get gold and buy a larger farm; in the end they will get into another kingdom but not the Celestial Kingdom.  You may see men every day who say they cannot endure this thing or that; will they be crowned with glory and eternal life?  They will not!  They will go into another kingdom and become servants to those who live in and obey the Celestial Law.  It is true that narrow is the way that leadeth unto eternal life and but few find it.  Many persons can see the glories that are ahead of them, but they want to hold up a little bit; they want to make a big farm; they say, don’t say tithing to me now; don’t mention the poor; don’t speak of the Perpetual Fund.  I want to be a rich man, and then I will do all the good my heart wants to do.  Now I say unto you, this is a stratagem of the enemy, and I have witnessed it.  I have never seen those men when they have become rich in this world’s goods fulfill their promises afterwards; but I have seen them go down into poverty.

We are here as Latter-day Saints; we cannot mingle with the world; if we do, we cease to be Saints.  I say it just as the Lord has revealed it to me.  The day the Latter-day Saints will say to the people in the world, we love you, we will intermarry with you, we will give our daughters unto you for wives, and be one with you; that day the curse comes upon this people as in days of old.  You may see it in those who become partners of life; they are not joined by the Lord, neither is it sanctioned by the angel of the Lord.  And on that day it may be said, goodbye to the road that leads to the Celestial gate, and when you get to where you suppose it was, you will find it is not there.

I will just say to every man and woman in the kingdom, I will bid every Gentile to come in the door by [167] adoption; and after they have been adopted into the family of heaven, this is the House of Israel; and the tribe of Judah and the half tribe of Benjamin whom we call the Jews and others, we know nothing of them.  We hear that Ephraim through Joseph was set above all of his brethren.  We hear they have mingled with the nations of the earth.  Jacob put his right hand on Ephraim and blessed him and his seed are not scattered among the nations of the earth, and wherever there may be even the smallest particle of the blood of Abraham to go to a child, you may depend upon it that this net will catch it, wherever it is.  The greater part of this people are of the pure blood of Abraham, and only let this people mix with the gentiles, and your Priesthood would be taken from you.

The blood of Cain is also upon the earth; and the Lord has said to His people regarding it: if you corrupt and mingle my blood with the blood of Cain, that we should welter under that curse.  Let this people be gathered and hidden unto us as we are in the midst of the mountains, and the moment this people would consent to mingle with the gentiles, that moment we would have the curse of the gentiles upon us.  You can never raise nor mingle with the accursed creatures.  I would do all of them good to the utmost of my power; I am willing to get up at midnight and baptize them if they want it, but the curse is upon them if they will continue to do the works of the cursed.  If you are a superior being and have power to control the elements and you are supposed to lead them all right, it is well for you; but the moment you mingle with them you will feel the wrath of the Almighty, for bowing down and subjecting yourselves to them, you will feel the wrath of the incensed God against you.

The first step of the sons and daughters of Jacob towards their punishment was that they would run and marry with the sons and daughters of strangers; the people will do wickedly–the woman gets a gentile man for her husband, and the man gets a gentile woman for his wife, and that very moment the Lord made a yoke for them, and the Lord said to the sons of Jacob, marry in your tribe; and if they had always done that, they never would have been 40 years in the wilderness, neither would they have been cursed in Canaan or had their temples thrown down.

[168]  I feel like swearing by the Gods and the holy angels, I will just keep to myself and not mingle with them, and I mean to say to my sons and daughters, marry one another and keep together, but that would be considered as treasonable and wicked by the world.  I expect they would hang me before they passed sentence on me.  I intend to live to see the day that men and women will be after good all the time and never afflict another being unless it is to execute justice upon them.  I want to live to see the day when I can jerk the net from every man.  I mean to fight until I win the prize in life or in death.  I look forward to the day when the righteous will be separated from the wicked, and for not the first particle of malicious feeling to any one of them, but I want them to keep their own side of the curtain, and am perfectly satisfied with peace and righteous feelings, and say let righteous principles prevail.

But Ephraim has to be whipped until he is made submissive; there is no control of them now.  You can see the Ephaimites here; have you not served the Devil long enough?  Then sanctify the Lord God in your hearts until this people draw the line, and we can say unto all others, there is the line; and until every man and woman declares they are for Zion, the gentiles will continue to say unto us, “If you will not come over to our side of the line, we will come over to yours;” and when they do this, they will try to get a clan around them and start one of their number to be an officer some time.  No, but if you will serve the Lord, you may.

The doctor says he has the right to doctor you and steal the purse, and the lawyer will cheat you out of all of it and it is perfectly legal and say I will cut your damned throats.

Any man may worship the sun, moon, stars or a white dog, or even the Car of Juggernaut, and they shall be preserved in their rights; but the inquiry is, will you cut them off?  No!  Not until it becomes a duty, and then I will slice off the dead branches; so long as there is life, there is hope–but between the Jew and Gentile, there is a line drawn between, so I cannot come into the Legislature and be a hypocrite.  My Eldership is more honor to me than the honor and the power of the crowned heads; the comparison between the two is so wanting that there is no [169] comparing it.  It doesn’t weigh in the scale of eternity; when you reflect for a short time upon being crowned and endowed with the power of Gods and having made a few worlds like this, and set up some kingdoms and pulled down others, it would look meager to you; you don’t know anything about it; it is that that explains the importance of an Eldership.  If a man could magnify the office of an Elder, my hair would become white as snow.  When I was an Elder and Brother Cowdery came to ordain me to the Apostleship, I told him I wanted to prove to God, angels and men that I could magnify the office of an Elder; this is my feeling still and with regard to this people, I just know you cannot serve both God and the Devil.  You never did and you never can.

You are in bondage if you can comprehend and reflect where Israel is gone to for marrying with the strangers; there went the blood of Ephraim and now the Lord is again gathering that blood.

The revelations given in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants are true; it is required for every man and woman to preserve yourselves; if you want to serve Baal, bid goodbye to Christ.

May God bless you and help you to preserve yourselves, and me also, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. (HDC Ms D 1234, Box 48, Fd 3)


Remarks by Brigham Young

March 4, 1852


With joy and delight I look upon you, brethren and sisters.  I feel to render all praise, thanks, and adoration to our Father and God that my heart is capable of rendering; and with all the affections, together with all the talent bestowed upon me, I feel to serve, praise, adore, and acknowledge the Lord our God.

Let me ask a question.  Finding ourselves in our present position in the world of sin and darkness, of ignorance, unbelief, superstition, and tradition, which have been woven and interwoven with our lives; thrown around us like a mantle, which is used to shield the body from the cold and from the storm; considering ourselves [170] as we are, then asking ourselves the question, if on earth we have any idea of anything like a kingdom or community of people being celestial; then asking ourselves again if we have, does not the presentation this evening border very nigh to it?  I can say for one, as far as we know and understand, as far as our capacities can expand and grasp life and happiness, just so far as this community which is present this evening, are advanced in the celestial path.

If there is a heart here this evening that does not chime in with every sentiment of righteousness, that heart has no power in this assembly.  This company are controllable, like the ship by the rudder in a gentle breeze, that can be turned hither and thither at the will and pleasure of him who commands; so with all here present.  At the sound of the voice all is hushed, and every heart throbs in unison in response to the words of praise and thanksgiving to our Father and our God.  This proves that the majority, at least, are right; and I have no reason to believe that there is a heart in this house but chimes in with my own.  Every countenance is cheerful; every face is lit up with a lively glow of joy, peace, and tranquility.

We are now enjoying our pastimes.  We often meet together and worship the Lord by singing, praying, and preaching, fasting, and communing with each other in the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper.  Now we are met in the capacity of a social community; for what?  That our minds may rest, and our bodies receive that recreation which is proper and necessary to keep up an equilibrium to promote healthy action in the whole system.

Let our minds sing for joy, and let life diffuse itself into every avenue of the body; for the object of our meeting is for its exercise, for its good.

This party was gotten up by the members of the Legislature to rest their minds, to convene in a social capacity, and enjoy the society of each other with their families, and to give renewed activity and energy, which will invigorate and strengthen them in the discharge of the arduous duties devolving upon them.

With regard to these feelings prevailing in our midst this evening, as well as the correctness of these principles, every man and woman must be their own judge. I judge for [171] myself and not for another, although I have that privilege and can do it with safety and propriety.  Why is this?  Because when I look upon the faces of my brethren, I know their hearts; let the roots of bitterness be there and their countenances meet mine, and I know it in a moment.  Do you not know it also?  Can you not feel it?  Can you not see it?  You can.  This is why I say that I have the privilege of judging others.  You have the same privilege.  Having this privilege to judge for others, as well as for myself, I feel to say that every heart of the company present this afternoon and evening feels to sing praises to the Lord and shout Hallelujah to His holy name.  I am in the best place I ever was during my life and with the best society.  I never saw a community that enjoyed the tranquility and peace that is enjoyed by this people in these valleys of the mountains.  Is it not so?  Judge for yourselves; ye are my witnesses.

A few words, perhaps, will suffice the company.  I was requested to make a few remarks at the opening of the meeting, but I chose to delay speaking until a more suitable time; for when any of my brethren or myself speak to the people, I wish all to hear that conveniently can, because when we are in this capacity, and call our minds together, it is to reflect for a few moments, and look at each other, and think of the Lord; view over the past time of our lives and contrast its history with the present festive moments.  It is good to look upon each other, because the faces of our friends and the gladness of their countenances, cheer our hearts, furnishing food for future reflection; under all circumstances, in every transaction of business, and of social enjoyment, remember it is good to reflect, and consider upon it now in the days of peace and prosperity while we have the privilege.

Our present situation and the enjoyments of this evening will become subjects of pleasant and agreeable reflection, when we shall be separated from each other.  Some of these my brethren may be absent in foreign lands; our sisters may be separated from this community and go to the right and to the left; then these moments of festive joy will be remembered with pleasing emotions and cherished in fond memory in after years.

[172]  Again, when we meet in this capacity, it is good for our minds to be refreshed on this wise a little, for the reason, as you are all aware, that we are naturally forgetful; and it is according to the frailties of human nature to decline and falter in our feelings at the varied, besetting, enticing, and almost overwhelming temptations that are abroad in the world, and with which the people, especially those of the household of faith, have to contend.  Our former life, its anxieties, and enjoyments, are apt to be forgotten.

This is our experience; if we should suffer ourselves to spend our time day after day, and week after week, as we are today, how long would it be before we would forget the Lord?  It would not be long.  If we continued in the exercising of the body without reflection, this company would soon think it is no matter about praying or asking the Lord about anything.  We have enjoyed ourselves heretofore, and all has been peace, quietness, and good order; but how long would it remain so?  How long would it be before we would become careless, if we remembered not the Lord?  For this reason I say on every such occasion, it is right, reasonable, and necessary that every heart be directed to the Lord.  When we have sufficient recreation for our good, let that suffice.  It is all right; then let our minds labor instead of our bodies; and in all our exercises of body and mind, it is good to remember the Lord.  It cannot be so but otherwise, I do not wish to see another party while I live–if I could not enjoy the Spirit of the Lord in this capacity with you this evening, and feel the power of God to rest upon me, I should cease from all such indulgence.  From this time, never let us permit ourselves to go one step beyond that which the Lord will own and bless.

But I pause here and for this reason; I want it distinctly understood that fiddling and dancing are no part of our worship.  The question may be asked, What is it for then?  I answer, that the body may keep pace with the mind.  My mind labors like a man logging all the time; and this is the reason why I am fond of these pastimes; they give me a privilege to throw everything off, and shake myself, that my body may exercise, and my mind rest.  What for?  To get strength, and be renewed, and quickened, [173] and enlivened, and animated, so that my mind may not wear out.  Experience tells us that most of the inhabitants of the earth wear out their bodies without wearing their minds at all, through the sufferings they endure from hard labor, with distress, poverty, and want.  While on the other hand, a great portion of mankind wear out their bodies without laboring, only in anxiety.  But when men are brought to labor entirely in the field of intelligence, there are few minds to be found possessing strength enough to bear all things; the mind becomes overcharged, and when this is the case, it begins to wear upon the body, which will sink for want of the proper exercises.  This is the reason why I believe in and practice what I do.  The question might be asked, Why not go into the canyons and get out wood, which would be good exercise enough?  If you would know, come up to my house, you will soon find out.

Were I to go to the canyons, the whole camp of Israel would follow me there; and they would not be there long before they would say, Come, Brother Brigham, I want to talk with you; come, I will chop this wood.  How many scores of times I have undertaken to work since I came into this ministry?  Scores and hundreds of times, when my calling in the Kingdom of God was less than it is now, have I endeavoured to set myself to work, but seldom could have a chance to do so more than five minutes [and] someone would come along, “Give me the hoe, Brother Brigham; I want to talk with you,” and so stop me; and no sooner stops me than he stops also.  I have given it up; I do not intend to work any more at manual labor.  I do not wrestle or play the ball; all the exercise I do get is to dance a little; while my counsel room is from my office to this room, and from this room to my house again, into my sitting room, dining room, etc.

You will see the time, you will know what my labor is.  I wish this community to consider that I have feelings of a very acute nature.  There is not a man or a woman, saint or sinner, it mattereth not, that feels injured, and lays their complaints before me, but what it rests upon my feelings; but my faith is unyielding, and I intend to keep it so, as much as I can; my feelings sympathize so with the injured, that I am grieved and distressed, and my head aches, and large drops of cold sweat sit upon my brow; no [174] man or woman knows anything about my feelings, and I do not want them to know, for I calculate to kick off all from my heels that I cannot carry.  I will carry all I should; but there is not a person in this community that can bring to mind or mention the time whenever I exhibited one particle of sorrows just as long as I live upon this earth; and when I go to the grave, I expect them all to go there, and sleep with me in eternal silence.

But to return to our party.  I would just say, it was gotten up by the Legislature to enjoy ourselves.  I have enjoyed myself first rate; my heart is cheerful and full of gladness.  I am in the midst of the Saints of the Most High; and my desire is, and I will say with all my heart: May God grant that the blessings, favors, mercies, and kindness of our Father in Heaven may bring us to a sense of the obligations we owe to Him and cheer us and cause joy and tranquility to reign in this community, that every heart may be bound up in the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, without having to feel the rod again.  What is the use of it, when mercy and kindness are lavished upon the people of God, to see them falter in their faith; to see them grow cold towards the Lord their God; to see them slacken their pace–is it not grievous?  Just look at it.

Suppose you had all the good gifts to bestow upon your children that heart could wish, and you lavish them out; but the more you give, the more slothful they become; how would you feel?  Just apply this to yourselves; I know how I should feel.  When I bring my mind to bear upon this subject, and see what the Lord had done for me, and for this people, and think that I should become remiss in my duty, so that the Lord should have need to chasten me again, it seems on the first reflection that I ought to be damned.  When I look at myself before the Lord and see what He has called me to, and what He has called my brethren and sisters to; how He has bestowed blessings upon us, and heaped them up until there is not room to receive them, and I should want to go to the gold mines and return again here to speculate upon the Saints, and should be guilty of complaining all the time. It seems if I were to do this, the Lord would damn me.

[175]  I know you feel as I do upon this subject.  When you take this into consideration, your serious reflections having place in your heart, you feel as I do; for heaven’s sake, for your own sake, and for the sake of Him who died for us, never let us falter in our duty.  While we live, it is our duty to love the Lord with all our might, and with all our strength, and with all our souls.  This is our duty first and foremost; we ought to love Him better than our wives, children, brethren, and sisters, and all things besides.  Is this our duty?  Verily, yes.  Let the heart love God and serve Him without any division of feeling; never suffer it to wander to the right or to the left for one moment.

If these were the feelings of this people, the Lord would lift up our hands, exalt our hearts, and cause us to walk in His almighty strength, so that the devil and his imps would never have power to bring another affliction upon us–never, no never.  Therefore, love the Lord; keep His commandments; cleave to the God of Israel; this is my exhortation all the time.  And what is the next duty?  Love your neighbor as yourself; do unto others as you would that others should do unto you; cease your contention and bad feelings, your evil speaking and evil doing.

As I observed here not long since, I consider it is a disgrace to the community, and in the eyes of the Lord and of angels, and in the eyes of all the prophets and revelators that have ever lived upon the earth, when a community will descend to the low degraded state of contention with each other; this little bickering, jarring, fault-finding, somebody’s abused me.  Why do you not say, if you have a mind to abuse, abuse away.  Suppose every heart should say, if my neighbor does wrong to me, I will not complain; the Lord will take care of him.  Let every heart be firm and everyone say, I will never contend any more with a man for property; I will not be cruel to my fellow creature; but I will do all the good I can and as little evil as possible.  Now where would be the wrong of taking this course?  This is the way to approximate toward a celestial state.  A community cannot be produced upon all the face of the earth that presents a celestial aspect like this.  If we continue to be faithful and prayerful and strive continually to resist every evil, we shall approximate more and more towards that Celestial Kingdom, where [176] there is an eternal inheritance and an unsullied glory.  And if we should look back upon ourselves when we were doing evil to each other, should we not do so with regret and shame–should we not look upon our past mortal lives with anguish and disgust?  I wish men would look upon that eternity which is before them.  In the great morning of the resurrection, with what grief would they look upon their little trifling affairs of this probation; you would say, oh, do not mention it, for it is a source of mortification to me to think that I ever should be guilty of doing wrong or of neglecting to do good to my fellow men, even if they have abused me.  Oh, how would it appear if you understood the heart of the Lord and understood the heart and faithfulness of those in the Celestial Kingdom.  As good as we are, we shall not want to look upon our past actions; we shall say, oh, do not mention it, but let it sleep; I never want that to be resurrected, but let it die in the grave and sleep an eternal sleep.

Brethren and sisters, I hope and pray our evils may never rise with us.  I can say to you with all my heart and with all my soul, and not only to this company, but to all the Saints throughout the world, may the heavens bless you; the Lord Almighty blesses you; my soul blesses you; how my soul loves you; may angels bless you, guard and preserve you, and may all the heavenly hosts arrayed in all their panoply of power be engaged for your exaltation.

One thing more–you will perceive all the time this one thing in me, viz., by my conduct, there is no lack of confidence–not a particle of jealousy arises in my bosom towards this people.  I never felt for one moment but this people loved me, although I may get up here and cuff them about, chastising them for their forgetfulness, their weaknesses and follies, yet I have not seen a moment when they did not love me.  The reason is, because I love them so well.  Do you not know that spirits beget spirits, and likeness begets likeness. I love this people so well that I know they love me; they have confidence in me because I have confidence in them.  You may scan the history of the whole Church and look over the whole surface of the matter, and did you ever see this people when they had the same confidence as they have in each other as at this day?  No, never.  And it is on the increase; and this is what will [177] make a community powerful.  But if we lack confidence in each other and be jealous of each other, our peace would be destroyed.  If we cultivate the principle of unshaken confidence in each other, our joy will be full.  What does it prove?  It proves that we are fast advancing and approximating towards that degree of light, knowledge and glory, and all the principles that pertain to the everlasting Gospel, and that we are actually in the favor of the Lord.  We need not bring any proofs of that, for devils never kick and cuff their own, that’s certain.  As I used to say fifteen years ago when I was out preaching, and the people would get alarmed when the devil would get mad, they would say to me, “Oh dear, sir, what is the matter? I am afraid we are all going to be killed, for all hell is boiling over.”  My answer was, Thank God, the Devil has not forsaken us yet.  Will he not sustain his own kingdom?  When you see all the powers of the evil one combined against a community, you may know that is Christ’s kingdom.  Everything has proved that this is God’s kingdom, and I need not say anything more about these two powers.

The Lord Almighty is for us, and the Devil is against us.  However, I will tell you what I think of the whole of the Devil’s company on this earth, if they will just keep out of my path, I shall be glad, for I never want to see one of them.  My soul is satisfied with looking upon this wicked world.  If I never see another wicked person while I live, I am perfectly satisfied with the Saints; these are my feelings.  True, it is my duty to preach to them; but I am willing if the Lord is satisfied, that I should never see another wicked person upon this earth.  I would be satisfied to live with the Saints and angels from this time henceforth.  May heaven bless you, brethren and sisters, Amen. (Mill. Star 14:260-264)


Moral Rectitude

Elder James M’Naughton

April 1, 1852


Whilst we are rigidly strict in advocating theories, whether they be in relation to ordinances, doctrines, or principles,–all of which is certainly right; still it ought to be borne in mind, that however pure and correct our [178] principles in theory may be, it will avail but little, if they have not a purifying and exalting influence upon the mind and morals, which they inevitably will have, if they are sincerely adopted, and faithfully acted upon, and which is the only sure and certain method of realizing any benefit therefrom.

That the world at large is lost to virtue, integrity, and moral excellence, is lamentably too true.  Notwithstanding various and multiplied efforts have been made, by the professedly philanthropic and religious, yet crime, vice, and immorality have preponderated, and are still alarmingly increasing!  The results strongly argue the impotency of the measures adopted; indeed we might sink into dark despondency and utter despair of ever seeing mankind raised from their low and degraded condition were it not that a better day has begun to dawn, that God has spoken from the heavens, that heavenly messengers have been dispatched, bringing glad tidings, with power and authority to execute and fulfil the purposes of the great God in relation to the fallen sons of men.  That power is vested in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  How pleasing the reflection, and yet how responsible are the members of the Church, and more especially the Priesthood, on whom rests the special charge of bearing off the Kingdom triumphant, and of wielding that Priesthood and power unceasingly for the glory and salvation of man. And here I would observe to the officers in the Church, that there is not a more effectual way of wielding the power of the Priesthood than by living in constant and strict obedience to its holy injunctions; for he that teaches one thing and acts contrary, gives the lie to the sincerity of his profession.  It is like “building up with the one hand and pulling down with the other.”  Precept and example ought ever to be constant companions.  For how can the practical superiority and excellency of our holy and mighty religion be made manifest, if not exemplified by those who profess to be teachers of the people.

We may have made much progress in righteousness, yet, brethren, have we not still room–yea much room–for moral improvement.  The day of perfection has not yet come; we look not for perfection just at present; but we are [179] narrowly watched–as with an hawk’s eye; our character is assailed, and all manner of opprobrious epithets and imputations are heaped upon us by the religious Pharisee, and by the dissolute, abandoned, and profane, and there is not a more effectual method of putting to silence all such gainsayers and accusers, than by demonstrating unto them the purity and holiness of our principles, by constant practice, and a life of unimpeachable integrity.  It is then, and only then, that we might be said to “adorn the doctrine of Christ,” by carrying with us the influence of our religion into all the walks of life.

Every man that holds the Priesthood, and in consequence acts in a public capacity, is closely scrutinized by the world.  His influence and example are more or less felt in society.  Hence the absolute necessity of the Priesthood pursuing an upright course, and dealing honourably with all men.  And if we have had to endure the stigma of reproach, calumny and slander, and have been held up as dishonourable, degraded, immoral and unvirtuous, by pursuing this course, we will make the Church honourable and commendable to all virtuous, high minded, and honourable men who choose to walk in the narrow path of moral rectitude.  Then it is that they will be compelled to acknowledge that the Saints have been misrepresented, and that they are actually a virtuous and honourable people.

But should we be calumniated for the practice of virtue, and the truth’s sake, how consoling the reflection– “Blessed are ye when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake.”  Now it is worthy of notice that it is only if it be falsely.  If occasion be given to the adversary to speak evil and to persecute–then it follow deservedly.

But again, the Saints look up to the Priesthood, not only for teaching upon doctrine and theory, but also for example, after which they may copy.  How beautiful does precept appear, when practically illustrated by the power of example.  It is then it shines the brightest.  It gives double weight and power to teaching, when the Saints see those who advocate true principles maintaining them by practice.  And thus they manifest that they are servants of God, not nominally merely, but really and truly.

[180]  On the other hand, how discouraging to the Saints to see one in the Priesthood, occupying it may be a conspicuous place in the Church, openly and repeatedly violating those holy injunctions and counsels that he gives from time to time to the Saints!  Here, precept and counsel, however good and excellent of themselves, are at once shorn of their strength and beauty.  Here the man, however high his attainments in literature, or however extensive his knowledge of things in general, becomes at once powerless and entirely inadequate in energy and influence to accomplish what is most desirable among the Saints; and here is fulfilled the parson’s proverb, when brought into rather close quarters– “Do not do as I do, but do as I say.”

Now I will allude to the “Word of Wisdom”, which has of late been brought officially before the churches of the British Isles, and which I regret to see is, to a certain extent, neglected and disobeyed.  In a meeting of the Church, the subject is advanced and warmly recommended to the Saints by the presiding Elder and others in the Priesthood.  It is believed, received, and obeyed by many, but strange to say, the first interview that they have with each other, finds that those very individuals, who were so warm and zealous in recommending the word of the Lord, have violated it themselves!  Strange consistency!!  The brother, however well-meaning and good disposed, is astonished and perfectly disappointed.  He naturally loses confidence in those that are recognized as his guides, having reasonably expected that they should be first in obedience to that which they recommend to others.  The Priesthood ought never to ask the Saints to do anything which they are unwilling to do themselves; and was this principle more generally acted upon, the Word of the Lord–the Word of Wisdom–would be much more adhered unto.

When the subject was last mentioned in the “Star”, I took occasion in a church meeting to read the article, and made some few observations, shewing the propriety of all the Saints yielding a faithful obedience to its requirements; that if the Lord saw it requisite to give such counsel, it should by no means be considered beneath our notice to give diligent heed unto the same, etc.  Some who [181] had been confirmed in the habit and use of those things forbidden, then and there voluntarily covenanted that they would–by the help of God–abandon those gentile customs; one after another expressed themselves desirous of acting in unison with the Lord’s counsel; the Spirit of the Lord was poured out profusely, and all rejoiced exceedingly.

Shortly after, in my visits among the Saints, I found that some had cast away their black tobacco pipes!  Others had committed to the fire their beautiful and fancy snuff boxes!!  Others had totally abandoned their old black, yet much-respected teapots!!!  All of which is very well and praiseworthy, providing they have fortitude and firmness of purpose to withstand the power of temptation, when they come to be enveloped in the columns of smoke or the captivating smell of the snuffer, or the exhilarating vapour arising from the stimulating cup of the tea and toddy drinker.  I am not apprehensive of their inability to stand to their covenant; but pray that they may have stability and energy to fulfil their laudable desires, and hope that many others may be led to pursue the same course.  For how deplorably inconsistent a Saint of God is, and more especially one in the Priesthood, who is praying for more revelation, and all the while is slighting and disobeying the revelations and intelligence already given.  Such are certainly standing in their own light, and are far from being worthy and in a fit position to receive more.  I only mention the above instance, which, to some extent, shews the good result and force of obedience to the principle.

But after all that has been said upon the subject, it is really amusing to see how tenaciously some cling to their old habits–shall we fancy–we see such eagerly grope for their idols, as they come forth in the resurrection!  How grievous the disappointment!!

But, says one, what has the “Word of Wisdom” to do with moral rectitude?  To which I reply that the practices and habits alluded to cannot be said to be strictly moral or virtuous.  The person who is gratifying and pampering a false appetite, by the indulgence of those habits which are heathenish, barbarous, and most deplorably filthy and offensive to the unperverted senses of man, and, of course, [182] much more offensive and detestable to the Spirit of God; such, I say, is far, far from complying with the important injunction of the Apostle, which is to “purify yourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and Spirit”; and is also far from “adding to his faith virtue.”

It is only when the principles of morality are practically illustrated, that their moral excellency is seen and felt; and we would ask, who can we more reasonably expect to exemplify those principles in all their deportment more than the Priesthood?  And again we ask, how is it possible that the Priesthood can at all possess the Spirit and power of their Priesthood, if they are not living in due conformity to all the commandments of God?  How can the power of God ever be made manifest by the administrations of such men, whose hands are not clean, and whose hearts are not pure before God?  These are questions fraught with infinite and eternal importance, & the more that we seriously reflect upon these things, the more they seem to rise in importance and magnitude before our eyes.

And, oh, we are led to fear that many in the Priesthood, holding high or more minor offices, do not feel to realize the weight, care and responsibility that is attached to that Priesthood which they hold, which ought to be kept pure, uncorrupted, and unsullied, in order that its power may be developed, and made manifest to the comfort and confirming of the Saints, and to the utter confounding of gainsayers.  The Priesthood being the channel, and it being kept clean, and unclogged with impurities, the gifts and glorious blessings of the Gospel, of necessity, will flow more freely and abundantly unto the establishing of the Saints.

As a people, mingling and co-mingling in the affairs of Babylon, with all its jars, strife, and confusion, we have abundant cause to give thanks and praise to the Lord for his goodness and power we have both felt and seen.  But what is it?  Not one-tenth part to what might be developed of the power of God, providing the Priesthood and the Saints were more fully exhibiting practically the principles of virtue and uprightness.

Again, we consider that the Priesthood should maintain a dignity of manners, and becoming deportment, which ought to characterize the servants of God.  To forbid [183] not only by precept, but also by the more effectual power of example, the condescending to anything low, trifling, and mean; to ever remember that Priesthood with which they are clothed, and to be exemplary in all actions and proceedings through life; for it is worthy of remark, that all actions whether good or bad, are not without their influence, corresponding precisely in proportion to their merits or demerits.

Let me then say to the members of the Priesthood, pursue a uniform course of action, corresponding with your holy Priesthood and noble profession, for herein is the grand secret of our success–the practical effect of our holy religion.  Let the Priesthood exhibit a good example, and the Saints are sure not to be backward in copying it.  Then follow in their train, all the blessings in reserve for those who hear and obey.  And by taking the excellent exhortation of the Apostle Peter, “giving all diligence, add to your faith, virtue; and to virtue, knowledge; and to knowledge, temperance; and to temperance, patience; and to patience, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, charity.  For if these things be in you and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

The foregoing observations I have made under a profound conviction of the truth of them; and with a strong and fervent desire of turning the attention of those to whom they are addressed; that as the wheels of time roll round, bringing strange circumstances and portentous events, we may all be as one, uniformly armed and equipped, ready to meet and combat manfully the common foe, that finally the conquest and victory may be ours, in the name and by the power of King Immanuel, Amen. (Mill. Star, editorial, vol. 14, pp. 101-104)


The Lord of Hosts hath Purposed

and Who Shall Disannul?

John Jaques

April 1, 1852


When the Lord sends the Everlasting Gospel to a people or generation, no matter by whom it is sent, it is [184] binding upon that people or generation to believe and obey it.  If believed and obeyed, it brings salvation; if disbelieved and disobeyed, it brings condemnation; other results are impossible.  No matter what the people may think about it, it must prove a savour of life, or a savour of death.  The people may abuse the servants of God and treat their message lightly, or they may honour the message and well entreat the bearers.  They are free to receive or reject; to obey or disobey the Gospel.  Reception and obedience are invariably followed by a rapid increase of knowledge, wisdom, unity, power and happiness.  Rejection and disobedience are invariably followed by darkness, confusion, discord, strife, and misery.  Palpable as these facts are, it is nevertheless a fact quite as obvious, that the mass of mankind, instead of listening to the servants of God, considering the message they bring, and weighing the evidences they produce; they do actually neglect the main point at issue, and create a deafening hue and cry concerning the character or actions of the men whom God has chosen, thus diverting one another’s attention from the things that pertain to salvation, by imaginary absurdities and supposed abominations.

Now, in a general way, God chooses the best men to accomplish His designs that the world can produce.  And if those men whom God chooses do not stand before the judgment of the world without rebuke, how shall those men who never profess that God has chosen them stand before the judgment-seat of Christ?  Will they not be burned up beneath the searching glance of Him whose pure glory is a consuming fire?  If the unrighteous judgment of this world scathes the green tree, what shall the righteous judgment of God do to the dry?

Jehovah does sometimes gather wicked men into the Gospel net, and bestows the Holy Priesthood upon them, that they may have opportunity to show what they really are–to act themselves out, that when the cup of their iniquity is full, they may be cast out of the Church of God, that it may be more abundantly manifest they are not of us.  Before these men are cast out of the church, and whilst the Holy Priesthood is upon them, their administrations in the ordinances of the Gospel are valid, and will be [185] recognized in the heavens, and those people who do not receive their message will be condemned.

No matter what the Jews and the Gentiles who lived 1800 years ago thought or said concerning the character of Jesus Christ and His apostles–it is now universally admitted throughout Christendom, that those who listened to and obeyed their teachings were justified in the sight of God, and those who rejected their teachings were condemned in the sight of God.

Some people, who cannot find anything better to do, speak much evil of Joseph Smith. Now the character of Joseph Smith is not the question. This is the real question:–Was Joseph Smith sent of God, and did he preach the true principles of the Everlasting Gospel?

Joseph Smith testified that an angel of God appeared to him and revealed to him the Gospel in its ancient purity and power.  Mr. Smith preached the Gospel to man, and he promised to all who would come forth and obey that Gospel that they should receive the Holy Ghost and should have testimony for themselves concerning the truth of the principles he advanced.  Thousands have obeyed the form of doctrine advocated by Joseph Smith, and they have proven him a servant of God and a true prophet, for they have obtained the testimony of the Holy Ghost for themselves, whereby they can declare that they know of a verity, independent of the testimony of Joseph Smith, or anybody else, that they have not embraced “cunningly devised fables,” but the eternal truth of God.  And having this knowledge for themselves, they can stand and smile at the impotent efforts of those who lift their puny arms to oppose the eternal purpose of the great I Am.  Nay more–those persons who have obtained this knowledge for themselves, can stand immovable in the cause of truth, though their very fathers in the Gospel should apostatize and deny what they once testified was true, and seek with all their powers to pull down what they once laboured to build up.

Here is a fact.  Joseph Smith introduced the pure principles of the Everlasting Gospel to this generation, and every faithful Latter-day Saint knows this for himself; he is not dependent upon the testimony of others alone, for he has proven the thing upon the principle [186] pointed out.  Now, no matter if Mr. Smith apostatized from the truth, died a villain, and is gone to hell,–this thing is plain–this generation will be under condemnation if they obey not that Gospel which God revealed through Joseph Smith.

Here is another fact.  Brigham Young has travelled and preached the same Gospel that Joseph Smith and Jesus Christ and Simon Peter did; and he still preaches it, and the power of God and the Holy Priesthood has rested upon him, and still is with him, and thousands of Latter-day Saints, and many latter-day sinners, know and can testify and do testify of this.  And those who obey the Gospel which Brigham Young advocates will be saved, and those who do not obey it will be damned, and there is no escape from this.  Editors may write, preachers may lecture, and pious Christians may persecute; but they cannot shake off the weight of responsibility which rests upon them to obey the Gospel taught by the Latter-day Saints.  This generation may think what it pleases, and say what it pleases, but God is not trifling with the people.  He has set his hand to work.  He has revealed the pure Gospel.  He has commissioned the Latter-day Saints to preach that Gospel in all the world, for a witness that the end of the present state of things is at hand.  He has said that those who obey that Gospel shall be saved, whilst those who disobey it shall stand condemned before him.

And now, should Brigham Young and the Saints in Utah apostatize from the work of God, and go over to the devil, this generation will by no means be released from the responsibility of obeying the Gospel which God has committed through them to man.  This Latter-day work of restoration does not depend upon men or the will of men.  God has begun it.  God will carry it on.  God will finish it.  God has declared that if those men whom He has called do not prove faithful, He will root them up, and call others to do the work.

The duty of the Priesthood in these lands is to preach faith, repentance, baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost to the people.  The duty of the people in these lands is to obey those principles, or where God and Christ are, they will never be able to live.  No man need mistake his duty.  No man need trouble himself about other people’s [187] business.  No man need be over anxious as to what the Saints are doing in Utah or elsewhere.  Let everyone be faithful before God, practice righteousness, work out his own salvation, and warn his fellow creatures, and he will always have sufficient work on hand.

One thing, however, is rather remarkable–that persons who profess to be preachers of the Gospel should leave their sacred employment for the purpose of gloating over the fancied or real abominations and corruptions of their fellow creatures; it manifests what kind of stomach they have.  Verily, carrion is the natural and only proper sustenance of some of God’s creatures. They pine upon purer diet. (Mill. Star vol. 14, pp. 109-110)


Conference Remarks by George A. Smith

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

April 7, 1852


We are neglecting the education of our children.  Knowledge is power.  The Lord will help those who help themselves.  The English, by the knowledge they possessed, conquered 200,000,000 people and brought them in subjection to their laws.  What we learn we shall carry with us.  The mobs will burn our ho[mes] and destroy our property, but they cannot burn or destroy the knowledge of our hearts. * * * If we could lay up one idea each day for a year, we should have a store of knowledge that no man could exhaust in a speech of three hours in length, and the wicked could not stand before you. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

April 7, 1852


President Young remarked for my own satisfaction and great consolation there has not one dollar gone into the hands of a lawyer as in the days of Joseph.  At that time almost every dollar had to go into the hands of the lawyers.  They prosecuted him all the day long.  But I said I would kill any man that sought to take me.  Many thought my purse reached from eternity to eternity, that there was [188] no end.  We were called bogus makers.  Brother Kimball said we would go where we could coin the pure gold $10 at a lick.  We have done so even $20 at a time.

Our brethren went to California.  The hand of God was in all this.  They opened the gold mines, and the Lord had a design in it to see who would be tried by it.  Never did nor never will any of the Saints go to dig gold there, without being sent, without being d[amned?] by it.  Mark my words.  If we go unto the Devil’s ground, we shall be left to smell Hell.  We shall feel the wrath of God.  If I was sent there by the Lord, I would go; but the Lord has not called me to go.  Many Elders in Israel, good men, have tried it and smutted themselves up so that it is quite a question if they will ever be washed clean.

I have said I did not think there was $1 in $70 paid in tithing that has been spent on the public works, but it seems from the book that there has been about one-fourth.  The other three-fourths I have had to borrow.  If I have to borrow all the money that is used and none assist me to pay it, it will make my head ache.  I have trusted the Lord and served Him all the day long.  And when I undertake anything, I persevere until I accomplish it.  I see the difference between trusting in God and doing business according to the order of the world.  There is not one hair dropped from my head unnoticed, and does God not know what I want?

There never was a miracle–only to the ignorant.  It is all to be accounted for on natural principles.  The Lord will not turn stone and clay into gold to suit me.  There is enough without it.  Jesus did not make bread out of stone, but He had knowledge and power and did call together the elements to make bread and the elements into the water to make wine, and He can call the elements together to make gold as well as bread and wine.

But the Lord is not going to work a miracle to clothe us.  Raise your wool and flax and spin and weave it.  Make it up and not have to pay cash for every pound you use, and what you buy is hardly worth making up, but what you make is strong and will wear. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


[189]                      Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

April 7, 1852


Wednesday evening.  The Elders filled the house at an early hour and were addressed by President B. Young, who arose and said this is certainly a mixed congregation of all the officers of the Church.  We are to be instructed in all things.  The knowledge that is now in the midst of this people is more than in all the world besides.  All science is in the midst of this people, even if they have not learned it as the world has.  I have my cogitations and views of the affairs of this kingdom, but I have learned that we must write work to the scribe.(?)  If not, we may fail in it.  But if we work in faith and confidence, the Lord is apt to help us.  I asked a favor of the Bishops–to divide the money debts in each ward, that it might be paid.  Let us contend with ourselves and discipline ourselves until everything that is within us is brought in subjection to the law of Christ.

You have been taught the first principles of the Gospel; now teach yourselves and the Church.

Our school is the School of the Prophets.  This is a school to plane and polish ourselves.  And suppose under such privilege, we should indulge in evil and neglect our families and our duty to God.  All our former sins would be upon our heads.  It is for a man to commit himself and all that He presides over unto God to do His will and continue to do it until you are sanctified.  If your neighbor does you evil, do not do evil to them.  Bear with him and set him right, but don’t quarrel with him, but be careful that you conduct yourself well until you are prepared for the society of holy men.  This is as I said the School of the Prophets.  Our baptism is only the beginning of our work.  You must then go on to perfection.  You must perform this work.  Our children understand the Gospel, but do they understand the way to govern their lives?  We will never see a day but what we can learn.  We shall not inherit the glory of God all at once or understand all knowledge, but God teaches us small principles to prepare us for greater ones. Let us learn in this school.

There are a great many [books] of education in the present day.  The main branch of our study is theology.  I [190] understand it better than any of the world. Adam, Enoch, Moses and Aaron, Jesus and the Apostles, have all been in the same school in their day and have faithfully _______(?) that they might be perfected.  They are my brethren and will be my company.

And I now tell you if you want me to have full fellowship with you, cease speaking evil of God and all good men, whether in heaven or on earth.  When a man is in the right track, he will [come?] and lay down anything at the feet of a brother to settle a difficulty and rather wrong themselves than to have a difficulty.  Do for the truth’s sake and my sake; take my counsel.  The people want revelation.  This is revelation.  If you wanted revelation written, I could write revelation every day about building a temple, digging gold, going to England, or any other place.

I profess to be an Apostle.  Every Apostle will have to be a Revelator and have revelations if there are thousands, if they do their duty and live up to their calling.  If not, they will have to be removed.  But a man that is not an Apostle has no power to stand at the head of the Kingdom of God, hold the keys of the Priesthood, and build up and lead the Church of God.  The highest authority on the earth is an Apostle.  Jesus Christ will have a set of men [by appointment?] with Him that will follow Him to the [end?] and do all that He requires of them.  They will have the greater glory, but those that cannot endure these things will have a lesser glory. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)


Remarks by Brigham Young

(as recorded by Wilford Woodruff)

April 8, 1852


President Young next followed and said the subject I aim at is to enlighten the mind.  It is expected we have to learn letters with regard to the principle of education.  It commences with the mothers.  I do not like to see mothers attend to everything else but their children.  They should teach their children all they can, for early impressions will last persons through life, whether they be good or bad.  I will tell you the truth as it is in eternity.  If the child does not have good instruction in early life, it will be required [191] at the hand of the mother and not at the hand of the [father?].  The child will think the mother is the best woman on earth, and the mother has power to instill into the mind of the child what they please, and what the mother imparts unto them will stay with them through life.  The mother should take care of the children and not spend their time watching the husband.  It is the duty of the mothers to stay at home and take care of the children.  My duty calls me to be in this stand.  I know not what my children are about or what they are doing.  They may be in the streets swearing [for] what I know as others do.  If they should go to hell, it would be required at the hands of the mother and not at my hands.

A child of mine shall not conquer me.  I would sooner see them die than that they should conquer me.  If any one of my children will not follow my footsteps, I will disinherit and disown them.  They shall not have a part in my kingdom.  I would rather get children adopted to me that will keep the commandments.  No child should rise up and teach and control the mother, nor woman should not rise up and dictate the husband.  And the husband should not rise up and try to dictate his president or the Lord.

In speaking of the English language, he said it was very incorrect.  He would not adopt it any more than he would the Methodist discipline.

Education begins with the mother to the child. You must keep it in remembrance that the Lord has commanded you to multiply and replenish the earth, that you may have joy and rejoicing in the day of the holy resurrection.  Do you keep your minds pure, and do you pray night and day?  Now pray from the time of conception ’til the time of delivery that your child may be filled with the Holy Ghost and that a noble spirit from eternity may come into the tabernacle and that the Holy Ghost may rest upon the father, mother and child. Often when some speak, you cannot understand–they make use of such high flown words.  But when I speak, you can understand, for I speak to you understanding the variety in the English language.  I would like to be with the holy ones who are full of eternal light.  A point of the finger [at another?] would communicate without words.  When I am full of the Holy Ghost, I can see a man as well [192] behind me as before.  I can see their hearts by the Spirit of God and know what is in them. (Wilford Woodruff Journal)



Brigham Young

April 8, 1852


There is a goodly portion of this congregation that have received their endowments.  I am disposed to speak upon this subject, hinting at the privileges and the blessings of the children of the kingdom–though I will bear testimony in the first place, especially to some of the last remarks of my brother, Phineas.  I know them to be true and assuredly the case.  A perfect example of it you may see in your children when they have plenty to eat; when all they can eat, they will eat, until they are uneasy and unhappy, and still they will cry for more.

Now this is truly the case with the children of the Kingdom.  When they are filled full to overflowing, so that they are at a loss to know what to do with what they have got, they will whine and complain and thirst for more.  This is the weakness of man; they want a proper understanding to know when they receive blessings, how to appreciate and improve upon them.

The condition of this people in a temporal point of view, may truly be compared to a family who are blessed with the luxuries of life, with everything they can desire–with every variety of sweet meats–with every variety of beautiful gardens, walks, orchards, yards and streets, or parks, and summer houses, and every variety of earthly possession their hearts could wish or the brain of man could imagine to have devoted to their comfort; they have nothing to do but seek pleasure–ride, walk, meditate, contemplate–and yet they are as unhappy as any people can be.

This, however, does not apply to all.  There are individuals in this community who have in comparison, compared heavenly things with earthly things, who have everything they can desire; then they are rich.  They have nothing to do but to put forth their hands and pluck what they please, but must do it according to the laws and [193] government of heaven; they must pluck systematically so as not to infringe upon any law of God’s Kingdom.  All is before them; they have nothing to do but enjoy themselves and yet their spirits are unhappy, uneasy, and discontented; they want more and are inclined to retain what they do have unlawfully; they wish to retain it in some other way than that pointed out in the laws of the Celestial Kingdom.  I say I bear witness to this.  Brethren, let us not be children all the days of our lives, but let us increase to a great extent our capacities, that we may become men and women before the Lord.

Now, brethren, to you I desire to speak a few words–that is to the Saints, incorporating in the first place those who have received their endowments, and those who have not received their endowments.  It is necessary to state the facts as they are with regard to our privileges.  It is very difficult to give the people their endowments, not having a proper place where we can do it.  Let us inquire of ourselves, is it not necessary that we should have a temple?

Now, brethren, if you can believe it, I will reveal the truth to you.  It is absolutely necessary that this people should build a temple to the Most High God.  What for, it may be inquired.  To worship the Lord in?  Yes.  To assemble the congregation in?  No!  Absolutely this is the fact.  Have we not heretofore built temples, and commenced others?  And when these were built, they were built for the assembly of the people, and for the public worship of God, but this was by permission; that is all.  A temple that is built for the priests of the Most High, is built to be occupied by that priesthood, by those who have the oracles of that priesthood.

But, it may be inquired, “Are they not built to assemble the congregation in to confess their sins, to confess their faults, and to exhort each other, and partake of the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, etc?”  That is not the design of a temple, though it may be done in it.  The tabernacle is for the congregation, and the temple is for the priests of the Most High to enter in and be as pillars, and there administer in the name of Israel’s God and for the salvation of the living and the dead; that is what temples are for.

[194]  For instance, let me ask the question here of the Elders of Israel, “Are we not now in circumstances to go forth and redeem our fathers and our forefathers–to act in their behalf?”  Now the congregation is lost at this very reflection. They don’t know anything about it, but if I reveal the facts in the case to you, then you will know.

Were we to inquire, “Where is your baptismal font to begin the operation?”  It is to be built for the express purpose of going down into it to be baptized for your forefathers, for the remission of their sins, and without this, not the first step can be taken.  If we cannot take the first step, it would be altogether improper in undertaking to take the last step.  This would just be like a man standing at the bottom of a ladder, all the time reaching to the top round without coming to it in the regular way by stepping on the first, second, etc.

You have got to begin at the beginning.  Although we are giving endowments here, yet if we had enjoyed the privilege that we should have enjoyed in the land of our nativity–had the privilege of building temples and dedicating them, and of occupying them, there is not an act of ours but what would be legal.  If the inquiry should arise, if it is now by the right authority we act, I will tell you, it is by the authority of permission, and if we had not a house here and were disposed to take the trouble of going up on these mountains, and there give the endowment, the Lord would own it, and acknowledge those endowed, and all hell could not prevail against them.

Now these are the facts in the case.  If this people wish to be exalted, it is often told you by my brethren, Br. Heber in particular often reminds us of the necessity of making our own heaven.  If you wish your endowments and exaltations, you must go to work & exert yourselves.

An inquiry may arise again, “Can we do this of ourselves, independent of the power of God?”  I answer, no.  I can say to every person in this house, we cannot do the first thing towards it in and of ourselves, but can we not be co-workers with those who give power and authority?  We can.  Now I am far from believing, and so are you, that the Lord will give us our endowments and prepare us for a Celestial Kingdom without our doing it.  I will say further, the Lord could not save us unless we save ourselves.

[195]  That is the order of heaven and of all the heavens that are, and surely it is the order which has been given to us.  We are made intelligent beings.  God has placed intelligence in every person to a greater or less degree; that intelligence must be improved.  You must act upon that which is given to you in order for the principles of intelligence to expand within the person, that they may increase and grow, that they may receive, and continue to receive until they are as they are seen, and know as they are known.

If we expect to receive our endowments, we have got to go to work and prepare ourselves to get our endowments, and when we take the path marked out by the Lord Almighty–when we follow the footsteps marked for us to travel in–when that is our course, the Lord will bless the labor of our hands; but until we do that, all our efforts are in vain.  The path has been plainly marked out and the directions given for the human family to save themselves; out of that channel, their efforts are in vain; in it, God owns their labors and blesses their works and thus prepares them for salvation.

Now in the first place I will say to the brethren who receive their endowments and every ordinance to be bestowed upon you, when this people go to work and build a temple when it is required of them, all these ordinances will be given to you over again, every one of them.  When the temple of the Lord is done, all these ordinances will be gone through again and will be administered for my father and my mother, or my family who have fallen asleep, and for this congregation–every one of them who have received their endowments here; but if they shall fall asleep, their present endowments are valid; but if they live, the Lord will require at the hands of this people the building of a temple to receive their ordinances legally, according to the strict letter of the law.

Perhaps many of you did not know–you supposed, no doubt, that you have got all you could have, and therefore it is no use doing this, that, or the other.  Now if this is the case, I want to stand before you as a revelator and reveal to you the facts in the case.  Let no man present think he can receive blessings in the priesthood if he fails to fulfill the duties he has been taught with regard to [196] building a temple.  It is necessary for us to put forth our hands and prepare a place where the endowments can be given legally–Such an individual will lose what little faith he has, and finally he will be lost also, and that is the result of it.

Again I will speak to those who have not received their endowments.  We expect to continue our labors here from day to day in administering the ordinances of the endowment as fast as we can, although our conveniences are limited; all who have experienced for themselves know that our privileges are very limited in this matter.  All the places this people have hitherto been enabled to erect and prepare are far short of what we actually used; it only answers the purpose in an extreme case, though it bestows great honor upon a person who can understand.  Figures are reduced to reality, and realities are exhibited by figures, and those who have the Spirit and understand derive great comfort and consolation from that source.  I believe as far as I have knowledge that every person, almost without exception, who has received his endowment in this place, is well satisfied.  There are many who know but little or nothing about it, but we shall continue to give the brethren and sisters their endowments, that if they should be called away to preach upon the islands of the sea, or be sent to some foreign land to labor, or be taken away before any other principles can be made known to them, these blessings will have been bestowed upon them, and they will be legal and valid.

You may inquire, “Why is this so?”  I observed if we had enjoyed the privilege of remaining in our mother country, of building and inhabiting, of planting and enjoying the fruits of our labors, and have had the privilege of building temples as we should have had, according to the glorious Constitution of the United States, no such permission would have been given, but in consequence of the power of the enemy and the wickedness of the children of men, they overcame the Saints; they persecuted them, they have driven them, and have worn them out.  When Br. Phineas inquired what had become of so many who had taken upon them the name of Christ, I could cast my eye over this congregation and say, many such congregations as this, their bodies are sleeping [197] quietly in the dust and their spirits are in paradise; they have died in full faith and in hope of a glorious resurrection.  Though thousands who have embraced the latter-day work have apostatized, thousands and thousands have died in the faith.  The Saints have been worn out–they have been smitten and driven, and they have taken the spoiling of their goods joyfully.  They have retreated from their enemies; they have yielded up all when they could not retain their position any longer.  They have yielded to persecution and have bowed down their necks to the yoke all the day long, and borne it patiently, and through their faith and patience they have hitherto overcome.  The Lord has permitted this, and it is all right. I say to you brethren that have not received your endowments, be patient.  We will administer the sealing ordinances to you as fast as we can.  We will do all we can for the people.  Every blessing the Lord has for the people, we will be as ready as possible to bestow upon them, acting as minute men for their good.

But one thing they may understand and duly consider–if the Lord has nothing for the people, they need not ask me for anything.  And if the people feel like complaining against me, they can complain as long as they please; my feelings all the time are, I ask no odds of them.  If I have anything for the people, they are welcome to it, and when I feel tired and wearied and feel indisposed to do this or that, the whining of the people will never make me do it.  I heard here last evening inquiries made if the brethren intended to do this, or that–if they intended to send out a mission this season; they wanted to ask that question of the President of the Seventies.  I say it is none of your business; mind your own business.

When the Lord has anything for the people, it is then time enough for the Presidents to tell them of it.  But if the people claim at the hands of the servants of the Lord that which the Lord has not given them, it will be poor picking; that vine is too poor to bear fruit.  When it is necessary for all the Seventies to be organized, I will tell them of it.  When it is necessary to do anything pertaining to the Presidency of Seventies, I will tell them of it.  And when it is necessary to build a temple, I will tell the people.

I will tell them  at this  conference this morning, our design and wish is that we make preparations to [198] commence the temple in the spring of 1853, to commence the foundation for building a temple to the name of Israel’s God, that He may have a dwelling place as well as the congregation.  When the temple is properly built and devoted to this purpose, to prepare us for a celestial inheritance, that temple will be set apart for a dwelling place for the Lord to inhabit, and the tabernacle will be for the congregation.  Do you understand the difference?  This is the place for preaching in until we can build a larger tabernacle; hence, when we have built a temple, the tabernacle must be confined to the use of the people all the time.

I will tell you what we can do; we can get the walls built up around this block; we can go on the north, east and west side, making a comfortable bowery, and there the people could sit.  We should be out of doors it is true; we should have to preach out of doors, but it would be as comfortable as in this house.  I would choose to be out of doors as much as to be here.  You stand between these two doors here, and you will say that you would rather stand out of doors and preach than stand in this draft.

If this place won’t convene the people until we build a temple, we can have a bowery made or a kind of shed put up for us that will contain the people and put in temporary benches, the same as we had in the old bowery; there we will sit, and preach, and sing, and convene the whole congregation.  If we want to do business, we can call the Elders into the tabernacle, that is, if it is necessary.  And the next thing is to go to work and prepare for the building of a temple, that the Elders of Israel may receive their endowments according to the literal letter of the law of divinity, as the Lord has revealed it.  However, I wish to urge upon you brethren the necessity of not being in a hurry, though.  We will do the work as fast as we can, and you shall have your blessings as far as we can give them by permission.

I wish to see the brethren put forth their hands as in times past to help to build up this kingdom.  I realize that many of them are like Br. Phineas; they want to be urged, and invited, and want to be looked after.  I wish to say to the old brethren who were in Missouri and in Nauvoo, we choose to give you your blessings first, and when any such [199] present themselves, we give you the preference; you have borne the heat and burden of the day, and are entitled to these blessings first.  Those who came lately into the church have done and suffered but little or nothing.  Although many who have come into the church have not done the first thing towards building up the kingdom of God, yet they are bold to ask for their endowments, we give it to them to get them out of our way.

This may have hurt some of your feelings, but brethren, when Jacob is blessed, never mind; don’t feel hard about it; should the blessings mar your feelings, they administer some consolation to the others.

Those who have set upon the watch tower and labored night and day, and watched the Prophet of the Lord, come up, that we may get hold of you.  And I will say now, wherever there is a brother that went into the Battalion, if there is one boy or man left, if he doesn’t choose to pass by his blessings, come and let us bless you and give you your endowments.  These boys deserve their blessings; I say to all such, come along, and if we can bless you, we are here to do it.

I would also say to all the pioneers who first came to this valley, report yourselves and come and receive your blessings; you were faithful over a few things, and if you still be faithful, you shall be made rulers over many things, if your hearts faint not by the way but remain steadfast.

So much for you brethren, who have not received your endowments and would wish still to receive them.  We will work as fast as we can that you may enjoy your privileges.

Many of my brethren with me speak of leaving for the south, and so many want sealing done before I leave, as though I was not going to return; I have to beg of them to wait until we get back.  We are almost flooded to death with business.  Cannot you do this, cannot you do that before you go away, is almost all the time ringing in our ears.  We shall have all eternity to spend; therefore, don’t be in a hurry.  If you are faithful to your calling, let me tell you there are no blessings contained in the celestial law of the Kingdom of God but what you will have a privilege to enjoy; and if we are faithful, all things are [200] ours, whether in heaven or on the earth or under the earth; all things, whether they be principalities or powers, or things present or things to come; the heights and depths of eternal wisdom will be yours.  You will then be rich; only be faithful, and the Lord has it all in store for you.

Now do you want I should explain this a little?  Suppose I happen to drop off from this state of mortal existence and leave a great many things undone that I wanted to do.  For instance, I am not sealed to my father, and this is necessary, as I was born before the new and everlasting covenant was restored; consequently, not being an heir, I have to receive my inheritance in my father’s kingdom by adoption–by the sealing law.  The keys of the sealing power spoken of were to be committed to Elijah for the last days; these are things spoken of.  I must be sealed to my father and thus make a chain of Priesthood to connect the links together.

Suppose I should drop off before this is done; what a pity it would be for Br. Brigham to go into eternity and not have his work done.  Let me be faithful unto the end, and my works will follow me.  If I had not a son in the world disposed to do my work for me, by and by my daughters will have sons and grandsons, and suppose they would not act for me, I have friends on the earth, for God would raise them up for me to do my work.  That is not all; by and by the Lord will say to the sleeping dust, awake and come forth out of your graves. I am on hand; the Lord wakes me up or sends somebody to do it that possesses the keys of the resurrection.  My dust is waked up; my spirit is re-united to it.  I will be with them [my children and friends] in some of those temples, and tell them what to do.

In this you see I am not discouraged or at all disheartened in pursuing my duties in this life, for I shall get all my blessings.  The Lord will not suffer any faithful person to be neglected.  Though you see the pulling and scratching that there is here, if you cannot see these spirits I can.  I know their feelings: they want to get this and that and the other.  What for?  Why, “I would be exalted, and blessed first and foremost; I want to be the greatest, the first and the best in all the kingdom of God.”  Get away from me with your nonsense; what blessings will you receive?  What blessings will I receive?  I shall be [201] blessed just in proportion to the amount of labor I do precisely, and if I am slothful and neglect my duty, and neglect my prayers, and to be kind to those around me–neglect to teach the people, to feed the poor, and administer to those who are needy when I have ability to do so, I shall be rewarded according to my works.

Now ladies and gentlemen, take that to heart; every one of you will be rewarded according to your works.  You will often see it thus among the brethren: “I wish I was ordained a President of the High Priests’ Quorum.”  Why?  I should be looked upon as the biggest man in the kingdom.  Another will say, “Oh, if I had only been a prophet and a seer, what a big man I would be.  I should be up head and shoulders above Br. Brigham.”  What nonsense!  Why was not I, Brother Joseph?  Why did you not tell the Lord that he ought to have called me out to open up this last dispensation?  If he had, he would have left out you.

These little sanctified preachers boast and say, “If you were to do so and so, I merely suggest it to have you look at it, and see what you think of it; I think it is a better plan; it is, I think, more heavenly.”  They will give you their views as to who to call and who not to call.  I tell you, you had better stay at home and keep your noses clean–You do not see this only among the Elders and Seventies, among the High Priests and in the High Council, and so where else?  We see it among the females, among the sisters.  “Oh, what a glory it is to me; I am the first woman in this kingdom; how large I do feel; how important I must look; how grand to think that I am the first lady in the kingdom.”  They are just like their brother, the Devil, precisely; they do not care if they fall(?) as low as he in other points, yet they will stretch up their necks and declare what great big bodies they are.  And you can see it among the Seventies out in the world.

At a certain conference, as much time was consumed as we have used in this conference, to find out if a Seventy was to preside in the conference.  I think Br. ________had a pretty time in his neighborhood.  Zebedee Coltrin was traveling and also Charley Thompson.  Charley raised up a branch and commenced presiding over it.  Three days were spent to find out whether Zebedee of old or Charley of late was to preside over the conference.  They might have [202] known better.  Such a spirit they imbibed made them altogether unfit to preside over themselves or over the least of one of God’s creations.

Brethren, let us mind our own business; that is the calling the Lord has called us to–to do everything we can to promote the good of the cause of truth, and never ask how big I am or inquire who I am, but let it be, “what can I do to build up the Kingdom of God upon the earth?”  And then you can understand what every man ought to do–which is the best they can.  Every woman ought to do the best she possibly can to build up the cause of truth.  You may ask what will be our reward?  I don’t know.  Ask the man who is devoted to the cause of his God what he is working for–Are you expecting to get some great seat in heaven?  He will answer, I don’t know; I never asked the question; I have never given it a thought, and I don’t care anything about it; the Lord is with me to work while I am in the flesh.  I love the light, the virtue, the freedom, the intelligence, and the knowledge of God, and that is enough for me, to make me get fat all the time.

I will tell you one thing more, if I can reveal it to you so that you can understand it.  A great many are very anxious to know if they will be satisfied with their situation hereafter.  Now I tell you, if you do the best you can and all the good you can here, you will be satisfied hereafter; but if you sit down and whine and complain with your situation here, you won’t be satisfied hereafter.  Can you realize that?  I think you may if you are devoted to the cause of doing good on earth, of promoting righteousness, and the Kingdom of God, you will be satisfied hereafter, but if you continue in your selfishness and complaining, you won’t be prepared to receive the crown you desire, but lose the very object you are whining for and render yourselves unworthy of it.  You will look back upon your past life and say, I have not done the best I could and now I have lost all.  Who will you be dissatisfied with? Not with me, not with the Lord; you will know He has done right, and you will be judged out of your own mouth.

Now let every man and woman from henceforth do all they can to build up the kingdom of God upon the earth, and never willfully do wrong to any of God’s [203] creations that are upon the earth.  If you take this trek, you will be perfectly satisfied; you will be satisfied just as you want to be; there will not be a murmuring thought or an uncomfortable reflection pass over your minds, but you will be calm and tranquil as the soft, balmy breezes of heaven.  The Lord is yours, and you are the Lord’s.  If there be still any grounds for complaints here, they are caused by our own neglect and picayunish feelings.

I have one thing now to lay before you before I close my remarks.  I have told you about the endowments and about building a temple.  You have heard read from this stand a manifesto by the clerk.  You know we are in debt; we have property on hand that would more than meet our liabilities, but it will not pay our debts with the exception of our cattle.  We are now turning out all the oxen we have to liquidate these debts; the cows we have on hand, we keep for the use of the Public Works.  We do not suffer the cows to go from us, for they furnish us with milk and butter and afterwards will make beef.

I have this question to ask this conference: if they have cattle that they turn out, will they let us have them now while they can, that we may turn them over to Livingston and Hooper?  I ask this conference to lend us a helping hand; let us have from two to five hundred yoke.

On the back of this, many may say, “we are very scant of cattle; we have not cattle enough to answer our own purpose.”  Now I know better, and I have known better long ago; the people have had too many cattle to be profitable to them ever since they came into these valleys.  The inhabitants of these valleys have more cattle now than they are all put together able to take care of.  See the men riding over the plains and in the canyons, hunting lost cattle, losing their time, and killing their horses.

If you have a dozen or fifty or a hundred–in a word, all the cattle you cannot make useful to you at this time, turn them out and keep your cows at home, for they are the most profitable portion of the stock, but let the cattle go.  There are also too many horses here.  If I wanted to hire a man, it is impossible, for everybody almost has got so many cattle and horses to look after, they won’t serve us; they must go and work with their cattle.  Part with your cattle and your horses and your mules; shave down the [204] number of your animals until you have only what you need, and can comfortably take care of, and let the rest go.

That is new revelation to you.  If you don’t believe the Lord has given any new revelation lately, be glad that you have just now got one–Br. Heber says the Lord would not tell you anything about that, but He revealed it to His servant, the prophet.

I have told you that, that I do know is as true as the sun ever shone upon this people.  We have got too much around us.  The brethren say they have so much to take care of, they have not any time to devote to other purposes.  If we can get from two to five hundred yoke of these spare cattle, it will free our hands from the liabilities now upon us, and at the same time free this people from a great amount of anxiety and trouble.  May the Lord bless you. Amen. (Mill. Star 16:310-312, 324-328)


General Conference Remarks

Brigham Young

April 9, 1852


Prest. B. Young addressed the saints on the subject of their endowments and poured forth revelation after revelation on the subject. A most heavenly influence prevailed.  He closed by shouting Hallelujah, praise ye the Lord. (DNW 2:12:2)



John Jaques

April 15, 1852


The Lord has declared that He will have a tried people to serve Him, to become His peculiar people, to administer His perfect laws and righteous government upon the earth, and to shew forth His praises amongst the children of men.  And He takes various methods to try the faith of His people; sometimes by persecution from the world; sometimes by heavy afflictions, losses, and crosses; but the crowning trial is to have the heart laid open by those who have been allied to us by the sacred bond of brotherhood, with whom we have taken sweet counsel together, and walked into the house of God in company.

[205]  “It must needs be that offenses come, but woe be to them by whom they come.”  It would be better for men to have millstones tied around their necks, and to be cast into the sea, than for them to injure the spirits of the meek and contrite, who put their trust in the Lord God.  Nevertheless, many will take no heed of this warning, but spend all their strength in endeavouring to bring reproach and suffering upon the Lord’s chosen people.

But it is necessary that the people of God should be tried and afflicted in every possible way, that their sterling worth may be manifest in the eyes of all.  God bestows not rewards undeservedly.  When thrones, principalities, authorities, dominions, crowns, and eternal life are given away, to whom will they be given?  To those who have never proven themselves worthy?  No.  But to those who have most abundantly proven that they are worthy.  To those who, like their divine Redeemer, have been made an open spectacle to God, to angels, to men, and to devils; who have borne the contradictions of sinners, and have maintained their integrity under all circumstances.  Yes, the enduring rewards of a glorious immortality and celestial honours will be apportioned to the worthy only.  The crowns of righteousness will be dispensed to those only who have purified themselves from the corruptions of a crooked and perverse generation, and valiantly fought the good fight of faith.

The Lord Jesus Christ, the fairest among ten thousand, and the altogether lovely, was exalted, honored, and crowned upon this very principle.  “Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.” (Heb. 1:9) “Looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Heb. xii:2) “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.” (Rev. v:12)

Jesus was tempted and tried in all points like as we are, yet without sin.  That arch-apostate, Lucifer, tried his power in the moments of our Lord’s weakness, when he had been fasting forty days; but apostasy tainted not the [206] lovely character of the Saviour.  One of his Twelve Apostles, who had shared in his counsels and knew more pertaining to the real character of Jesus and the things of the Kingdom of God than any outside the circle of His disciples–even Judas Iscariot, had the shameless effrontery to betray the Lord of glory to His enemies with a kiss.  How acutely must the pure and sensitive mind of Jesus have felt the sting of this apostate’s fulsome treachery.  But Jesus was faithful, and He received the crown, whilst the traitor received thirty pieces of silver–the price of innocent blood.

In our day, now the Lord has restored the true principles of the Gospel, the Saints have to be tried by the acts and doings of apostasy.  The world does not know sufficiently of the Saints of God, to try them to the quick.  It needs those who are conversant with our conduct, our thoughts, and our motives–it needs those who are well acquainted with our real character, to lead on the world to the decisive struggle.  Those who have been in our midst, and know the policy of the Saints, the power of the Priesthood, and the true genius of the pure Gospel–those men, when they take sides with Satan, are the persons who fan the flames of persecution to their utmost fierceness, and put the finishing stroke to the trial of our faith.

But shall we flinch from the trial because apostates rage and foam?  Shall we give up salvation because men reveal the filthy contents of their own black hearts, charge those things upon us, and then excite persecution because we will not endorse them?  No, verily no.  The good sheep know the voice of the Good Shepherd, and Him they will follow, pressing closer into the true fold.  But a stranger’s voice they do not know, and they will not follow him, but will flee from him.  Though men who have a knowledge of the pureness of our motives, the truth of our principles, and the power of our calling, wrest these things with a view to our destruction; yet we know and have experienced that the Lord causes the wrath of man to praise him, and the remainder of it he restrains, so that the Saints receive no real harm.

Nay, “these light afflictions which are but for a moment will work out for us a far more exceeding and [207] eternal weight of glory.”  Truth, Purity, and Virtue, like the three Hebrew children, will abide the fire, though heated seven times hotter than usual, and they will eventually come forth, with all their followers, without even the smell of fire upon their garments.  The time will come when the righteousness of the Saints will shine forth in surpassing splendour, and calumny and misrepresentation will vanish before it like the morning mists before the rising sun.  Then the world will acknowledge the worth of the Lord’s people, and bow the knee before the inscrutable wisdom and inflexible justice of Jehovah.

What then?  “In a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour and some to dishonour.  If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and made meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work.” (2 Tim. ii:20, 21)  Apostates are vessels created to dishonour; they will fulfill the measure of their creation.  They shall be cursed with the heaviest of all cursings, saith the Lord.  They are liars at the best; they first testify that we are the Lord’s people, and then they testify that we are not.  And all liars shall have their portion in that place where the worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.  Therefore, O ye Saints of the Most High, purge yourselves from the spirit and fellowship of apostates, and ye shall become vessels unto honour, sanctified and made meet for your Heavenly Master’s use, and thoroughly prepared unto every good work. (Mill. Star, vol. 14, pp. 119-121)



John Jaques

May 1, 1852


Chastity is a most lovely and precious gem: it will adorn the diadem of its possessor, and sparkle on his brow with celestial glory while eternal ages roll.

The bare idea of chastity is inexpressibly beautiful and elevating to a virtuous mind.  There is a germ of true nobility and divine majesty in the chaste man or woman, which impart a conscious dignity to the character and command the homage of respect and high esteem.  The [208] grand and lofty sentiment–death before pollution–which, according to historians, once pervaded the ancient Roman community, has won the admiration of the pure minded of all succeeding generations. Signal blessings are conferred upon and promised to the faithful observers of the law of purity, and in an awful manner are its violators denounced and punished.

The Patriarch Joseph resisted temptations to impurity, though tried severely, and because of his faithfulness received a greater blessing than his brethren or his father’s progenitors.

The Lamanites (North American Indians) who are a remnant of the tribe of Joseph, are the heirs of splendid promises, because of the purity of their social relations.  The Prophet Jacob addresses the Nephites upon this subject in the following manner:

“O all ye that are pure in heart, lift up your heads and receive the pleasing word of God, and feast upon his love; for ye may, if your minds are firm, forever.  But wo, wo, unto you that are not pure in heart; that are filthy this day before God; for except ye repent, the land is cursed for your sakes; and the Lamanites, which are not filthy like unto you, (nevertheless, they are cursed with a sore cursing) shall scourge you even unto destruction.  And the time speedily cometh, that except ye repent, they shall possess the land of your inheritance, and the Lord God will lead away the righteous out from among you.  Behold, the Lamanites, your brethren, whom ye hate because of their filthiness and the cursings which hath come upon their skins, are more righteous than you; for they have not forgotten the commandment of the Lord, which was given unto our fathers, that they should have save it were one wife; and concubines they should have none; and there should not be whoredoms committed among them. And now this commandment they observe to keep; wherefore, because of this observance, in keeping this commandment, the Lord God will not destroy them, but will be merciful unto them; and one day they shall become a blessed people.  Behold, their husbands love their wives, and their wives love their husbands; and their husbands and their wives love their children; and their unbelief and their hatred towards you is because of the iniquity of their [209] fathers; wherefore, how much better are you than they, in the sight of your great Creator?  O my brethren, I fear that unless ye shall repent of your sins, that their skins will be whiter than yours when ye shall be brought with them before the throne of God.” (Book of Mormon, p. 119)

Whoredoms and licentiousness were punishable with death by the Mosaic law.  Exclusion from the congregation of the Lord to the third and even to the tenth generation was the curse upon illegitimacy.

In the Doctrine and Covenants the following instructions are given concerning adultery: “Thou shalt not commit adultery; and he that committeth adultery and repenteth not, shall be cast out; but he that has committed adultery and repents with all his heart, and forsaketh it, and doeth it no more, thou shalt forgive; but if he doeth it again, he shall not be forgiven, but shall be cast out.” (Sec. 13:7)

According to the Apostle John the most part of the inhabitants of all nations upon the earth in the last days will be filled with the spirit of licentiousness, and will be visited with righteous retribution for their fornications and abominations. (Rev. xvii and xviii) And can we not see the fore part of this prophecy fulfilling before our eyes in the present state of society? Do not licentiousness and debauchery stalk through the land with unblushing front, and revel unchecked from court to cottage, and from prince to peasant?  Are not the proudest cities in Christendom besieged by prostitutes? Is not the world full of intrigue and seduction?  Are not heads restlessly plotting and passions shamelessly pandering for the gratification of unbridled lusts?

In what light is this gross lewdness considered among modern Christian governments?  Is it considered a crime of such fearful magnitude as to threaten the dismemberment and destruction of society, and, consequently, worthy of condign punishment?  Alas, no!  It is not even considered a transgression of the law; but, on the contrary, houses are actually licensed for the perpetration of this filthiness! Hundreds and thousands of human beings are annually ushered into this world destitute of legitimate parentage.  Such beings cannot possibly entertain much [210] natural affection for the immediate authors of their existence; it is not to be expected, and we do not see it.  Many of these persons grow up to maturity without any apparent link to unite them to the great family of man.  This sets the hearts of the children against the fathers, and the hearts of the fathers against the children, and the curse of degeneracy is the doom of both.  These things are crying evils, and call loudly for vengeance from on high.

Upon the plea of the artificial state of modern society, there may be many extenuating circumstances adduced in behalf of individuals overtaken in these faults, but it can hardly be denied that the genius of Christendom, as a whole, is compatible with licentiousness, corruption, and abomination.  Truly we can scarcely expect to see things otherwise, while millions of our fellow-creatures are stowed away in confined corners of the earth, and miserably sustained by the fluctuating favours of commerce, instead of spreading upon the face of the earth, replenishing it, and rejoicing in the bounties of a kind Providence and the fruits of their own industry.

Marriage is an ordinance of the Lord, and was instituted to authorize, consecrate, seal, and celebrate the union of the sexes for the procreation of the human species, and for the uniting of society in the bonds of love and affection; thus forming the foundation upon which the social superstructure is reared, and at the same time serving for the keystone by which it is held together.  It is a most sacred ordinance and cannot with impunity be trifled with.  Man and woman are joined together by the law of God, in view of their interests blending together and becoming one, never more to be divided.  An infringement of the marriage contract creates a social breach, proportionably weakening the social fabric, and providing a means whereby peace, confidence, and the blessings of Almighty God are sure to leak out.

It should, then, be the highest ambition of the Saints of God to preserve their bodies and spirits pure and spotless from the abominations which are practiced amongst the Gentiles; to be chaste in thought, word, and deed; to marry and regulate their passions by the law of the Lord, and so secure to themselves the favour of God, [211] the approbation of a clear conscience, and the inestimable blessing of a godly posterity. (Mill. Star, vol. 14, pp. 151-153)


Instructing Children

Brigham Young

May 23, 1852


If they [parents] wish the word of the Lord upon the subject, I will give it to you and you may any of you write down if you please.  It is the will of the Lord, our God, that we teach our children the way of righteousness from the Holy Scriptures.  Let them commit the Holy Bible to memory, and the Book of Mormon and the D & C and then all good books . . . and it is the will of the Lord that we teach them in their youth, that they may know the Lord from their childhood and the ways of righteousness and truth. (HDC Ms d 1234, Box 48 Fd 4)


Death and the Future

Millennial Star editorial

June 12, 1852


How often we behold one or other of our fellow creatures closing their mortal career, and dropping into the silent grave, whilst the tears of sorrow flow, as if to embalm the fondly cherished memory of the dead with the last drop of moisture that sympathy can bestow.  The heart bleeds at every pore when the strong and endearing ties of nature are rent asunder.  Death, that most unwelcome messenger to man, lurks in every path, visits every clime, and claims all earthly creatures as his own.  The stout heart, unappalled by the most horrid scenes of earth, shrinks at the dread approach of death, and knows not why we live today, tomorrow die.  O Death! mysterious power!  Destroyer of created things!  With universal sway, thy work is onward, and thou dost triumph still.  Yet hope forbids that man was made for thee alone.


Thou surely cannot be the goal–

The end of man’s career;

He from thy power may yet be freed

To fill a nobler sphere.


[212]  Today we live and hope–instinctive hope with its undying assurance, whispers it is not in vain.  Amid all the reminiscences of the past and enchantments of the present, the heart clings to the hidden future as to the secret springs of life.  What then?  We live to earn a prize that lies beyond the gates of death.  All hopes of a reward for the heavy toilings of this mortal life are centered there.  We live to die.  We live for that which death alone can bring to us; but still its very sound brings terror unto man. An instinctive dread of its approach seems stamped on every soul.  Each of necessity exclaims, I too must die.  But why such anguish?  Why such keen remorse, as seems at times to rend the soul and blast the fondest hopes that life can cherish?  Ah, it is as He designed who uttered the decree: a curse–a punishment for sin–a reward of merit for the transgressor.

The grief and sorrow of the afflicted husband, mourning for a departed wife; or the fond wife over the remains of an affectionate husband; the children mourning for the loss of their parents; and the parents yielding with tearful eye their lovely offspring to the unrelenting foe, all unmistakably declare, that a curse is prepared, which shall in the end make desolate the earth.

Oh sin, thou art the sting of this monster death.  But is there no place where thy pangs are never felt, and where thou canst never come?  If so, where, O where is that region found–where thy grim face is never seen and thy palsying hand can never reach?  Where happy ties by thee are never broken, and thy cursed influence is never felt.  O where can one enjoy the balmy influences of life, eternal life, without dread of thy approach?  Tell me ye wise philosophers, ye honoured sages of this world, have you with all your searching found that happy spot?  Have you, on all the worlds that you have viewed with naked eye, or telescopic aid explored a happy region, where tears and sorrow are not found?  Speak if you have, and tell–


Where lies the narrow path that leads to such a

blissful sphere,

And I will spend a life of toil to gain admittance



I wait to hear them answer yes, or tell me where, but wait in vain.  Their silence is the dread silence of the [213] grave; it answers not; the anxious soul, the desponding heart, sink deeper than before into the gloomy labyrinth of despair.  But still one hope remains, and I will ask again: have you not heard of Him who passed this dread decree?  Who is He that determined this evil upon man, and made death His messenger, to go and come at His bidding?  Are there any bounds set to this destroyer?  If so, who holds the keys of his dominions?  Let me commune with Him, for He can tell me all.  Now they answer me and say, “We have heard of one called God, of whom it is said, He framed the world and created man upon it, but we have seen Him not; we have not heard His voice, neither have we beheld His abiding place.” A vision opens to my view.  Intelligence, like the vivid lightning illuminates my understanding, and the still small voice of a good spirit from a better world whispers an answer of peace, which is more than earth can give, whilst the heavenly messenger unfolds to me the glory of other worlds.  My soul is overwhelmed with joy at beholding the glorious spectacle of happy intelligences which dwell in the presence of their maker–God.  It is as the joy of a long absent son returning to his kindred associations, and awakening to a bright recollection of eternal scenes in which he had before mingled.  I behold no pain nor sorrow, for death has never entered those blest abodes; there no tearful eye betokens grief, neither does the light of the sun increase its glory, for the Lord God in His majesty, whose brightness is above that of the firmament, is the light thereof, and that continually, for there is no night there.  There God in His glory dwells in the midst of His kingdoms, and with one glance of His all-searching eye surveys the works of His own hands and comprehends them all.  In His own wisdom He appointeth unto them their times and their seasons, and giveth to all their bounds.  Messengers wait, clothed upon with immortal power, to execute His decrees; yea, myriads worship before Him, and own Him King; while His armies are innumerable.  Angels, as His swift messengers, like the lightning, traverse the eternal regions of space, and bear Him tidings from worlds afar; all were created for His own glory.

[214]  Here I behold Him who passed the decree of death upon man, and here I behold the spot, yea, the world of the redeemed and sanctified, who are crowned with glory, and with whom I desire to remain and dwell forever more; but the spirit of the vision tells me “not yet, thou must tarry for a little season, until the days of thy probation are numbered, and then, if thou art faithful, thou shalt pass the portals of the grave without the sting of sin, and obtain the victory over death; yea, thou shalt not taste of death; for the pangs thereof which are bitter, shall be made sweet unto thee, and then thou shalt share with the redeemed in the glory of thy Father, for the earth upon which thou now dwellest shall be purified at the time appointed.  When it shall have filled the measure of its days, the elements shall dissolve, and wickedness shall be removed far from it, and it shall become new, as it is written, `And I saw a new heaven and a new earth;’ and again, `Behold, I make all things new!’  And it shall partake of the glory of its Maker, insomuch that it shall appear like unto a sea of glass upon which the redeemed thereof, from among all nations, shall dwell.”

The vision is still open–the earth appears exceedingly beautiful, yea, language is not sufficient to describe the excellency of that which is in reserve for them that love God, who will be permitted to inherit the earth when it is purified.  I behold inhabitants are dwelling upon the face of the earth in that exalted state of happiness which alone is found in the enjoyment of pure intelligence.  The multitude of cities, patterned after the order of Heaven in their beauty, appear, together with their streets which are adorned with gold and silver and all manner of precious things, fields of eternal green affording all that can be desired for smell or taste, or that could please the eye; the trees continually yielding their fruit; the tree of life for man; all these joys conspire to render it more than paradise, yea, a heavenly abode, a dwelling place of God, in the midst of His Saints, who are sanctified to dwell in His presence.

Now I understand why man has such a fear of death, and the wisdom of God therein; for when the glories of the future are revealed to him, he desires above all things to return to God, and seeks to tarry no longer in the flesh, to [215] fill up the measure of his days in the midst of wickedness, and under the bondage of death; so desirable is the glory of that happiness which is to be the portion of the faithful.

But in the wisdom of God, when the visions of heaven are closed upon him again, and he is surrounded with earthly things, his desires for life return, with a proper dread of the realities of an untried future state, that he may patiently, in the element to which he belongs, prove himself worthy of a glorious exaltation, by bringing many sons and daughters unto God, that they also may be made partakers of His glory in an endless world of bliss.  Because of this, he suffers all things and endures all things, yea, even death itself, knowing that he shall be delivered from its bondage and be brought into the glorious liberty of God.

And it is by faith on the Son of God, and by the keeping of His laws in this mortal state, that man has power to overcome that great and last enemy, even Death, and these are the bounds of his dominion, for he has no more power over those who are redeemed and who thereby become eternally free.

The fear of death is upon the wicked continually; therefore, they are in bondage.  It is not given unto them to taste of the happiness of a redeemed state or behold in vision the glory of God; neither can they come into His presence.  But an awful fear rests upon them because they are doomed to endure the bitter pangs of death in an awful state of misery, from which they cannot be redeemed except by the Gospel of the Son of God, even Him who is the Redeemer of the world and the Saviour of men.  Therefore, the devil leadeth them down to hell, and they are encircled round about with the chains of death; and under the dominion of Satan they receive a just recompense for all their iniquity.  O the hardness of the hearts and the blindness of the minds of the children of men, by reason of which they are led captives at the will of Satan.

But, on the other hand, how great is our joy to know that God in His infinite mercy has once more condescended to bestow a knowledge of the future upon man, and caused doubt and uncertainty to flee away before the visions of heaven, which are again opened to the gaze of [216] mortals as in days of old.  Now man can be set free from that state of bondage to which he has been subject all his life through fear of death, and like the prophets of old, with one glance survey the future, scan eternity, and in the hopes of his reward encircle all its joys and blessings and claim them as his own.

The most perfect assurance now takes the place of doubt fear is not known, and darkness is comprehended by the light of intelligence.  Error which enslaves the mind yields to truth, which dares maintain its independence, while death with all its horrors is rendered powerless at the approach of eternal life, which is the portion of the Saints. (Mill. Star, editorial, vol. 14, pp. 241-243)


False and Delusive Spirits

Millennial Star editorial

June 26, 1852


Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits, prove them, and learn whether they be God-like, and, if so, receive those spirits, but, if not, reject them; for whatsoever is not of God is evil.  It is no uncommon thing for a false spirit to assume a more plausible appearance to a casual observer, than a true spirit would on the same subject; it was so formerly, it is so latterly.

We were forcibly reminded of these truths when a sister remarked in a recent conversation, “What a happy thing it would be if the writings of the clairvoyants and mesmerizers were true concerning the spirit world, for then all would be saved.”  Yes, said we, just as happy a thing would it now be as it was in the councils of eternity, when the Father made proposals concerning the salvation of man, when he should sin on the earth; Jesus offered to redeem all who would repent and keep a celestial law; Lucifer, a younger brother, offered to save all; Jesus’ offer was accepted by the Father and Lucifer’s was rejected; and yet Lucifer’s proposition appeared so plausible, so much more liberal, noble, benevolent, and kind-hearted, that one-third part of the sons of God believed it and joined Lucifer’s standard. That was what made division in heaven and war followed; Lucifer, with one-third of the spirits of heaven, [217] which he drew around him by his sophistry and false philanthropy, declared war against Jesus and the two-thirds that rallied round His standard to maintain the truth; and they fought until Lucifer and his followers were overcome and cast out of heaven, even unto the earth, and were cursed with this curse, even that they should not receive unto themselves bodies on the earth, like the two-thirds who maintained their integrity and fought by the side of Jesus.

This curse came through imbibing and exercising a false spirit, a sympathizing spirit, a spirit that will sympathize with misery or punishment, when misery is justly due by punishment.  Lucifer made his followers believe that he was a far more tender-hearted and merciful being than Jesus, and got all he could to help him sympathize for the miseries that must follow the abominable crimes of man on the earth, and they want it for salvation anyhow, right or wrong; they were so good, so holy, and so benevolent they could not do otherwise.

There are multitudes of just such benevolent souls on the earth at the present day.  Men may lie, steal, swear, get drunk, then murder and shed innocent blood, for which there is no forgiveness in this world nor the world to come, and for which as good a man as King David, “a man after God’s own heart,” was thrust down to hell, and there will remain till he has paid the uttermost farthing.  And yet there are men in abundance on the earth who are possessed of the same holy benevolence with their father Lucifer, who will pray over them, exhort them to repentance, petition the governor to pardon them, and do all in their power to save them from the punishment decreed by the laws of heaven.  They are so sympathetic, have so much kind-hearted feeling, so full of Christian benevolence, disinterested benevolence, they would save the rascals from punishment if possible.  They can’t bear to have their poor fellow creatures suffer so much; it is too bad.  Such conduct is the disinterested benevolence of which the world is so full and boasts so much.

But what is the benevolence of heaven, the sympathy of the Holy Ones in such matters?  Down to hell where David went; down to hell, ye murderers, ye whose sins cannot be pardoned; ye have taken the blood of your [218] fellows, and ye can’t restore it; therefore howl ye, for hot wrath is upon you, and he that sitteth in the heavens will laugh at your calamity, and mock when your fear cometh.  Your destruction cometh like the whirlwind, and no power can stay it.

Herein is the benevolence of God manifested; when there is no more hope of a man, instead of keeping him in the midst of the children of men to commit further outrages and mar the peace of His kingdom, He thrusts him down to his own place, to howl out his lamentations and work his passage to the last milestone; while the disinterested benevolence of the priests of Baal would pray him into heaven, in sprite of the decrees of heaven, with all his unpardonable sins upon his head, if they had the power.

They are so full of sympathy, “dear spirit, sweet spirit,” they would have all men saved; as much as the sister who had read clairvoyance till she had almost forgot her God and hoped the mesmeric world of spirits was true, or that the followers of Lucifer who lost their own salvation by exercising a spirit of false sympathy; and so will it be with all who forsake the living God, and raise up gods of their own imaginations and harbor false spirits.

False spirits are more subtle and more contagious than the small pox; their number and diversity of operations cannot be counted by man; and the first moment the Saints leave the path of duty, that moment they are subject to the influence of evil, false spirits, which once having taken possession of the soul, are difficult if not impossible to be removed, by the person so receiving them without assistance from those who have more wisdom.  The great object of evil spirits is to get bodies, and the only chance they have is to dispossess a soul of the spirit of the Lord, the light of eternal truth, and take possession of that body thus dispossessed; and when thus once in possession, it may truly be said there is a body possessed of the devil.

Jesus and His disciples in different ages, have commanded the unclean and wicked spirits to depart out of those of whom they had taken possession, and they have departed; but there are those spirits which are not [219] easily dispossessed and go out only by prayer and fasting.  And again, there are those spirits that will hardly go out at any price, except it is by the will of those who harbor them.  And of what class are they?  They are invited spirits.  Invited spirits?  Yes, many spirits watch their opportunity to thrust themselves into a person when and where they are not wanted, and such are much more easily cast out than those who are invited guests.

For instance, a person for some real or supposed injury or neglect from a friend, wishes to retaliate, to be revenged, and of course opens the way and invites the spirit of jealousy to take possession; and the moment jealousy enters the breast, there is a perfect hell of happiness.  No scheme that hell itself can devise to torment, perplex, harass, disturb, vex, or mar the peace of friend, wife, or husband, is left untouched, or unmoved; and by that time the breast of the harborer is opened to all the evil spirits of Pandemonium–all have free access, and oh, what a world of glory dwells there!

And how shall that jealous spirit be removed?  By the laying on of hands?  The Lord deliver us from such an ordinance, in such a case.  Why?  That spirit was invited to take up its abode there, and while the spirit is made welcome by that person, what right have we to dispossess it?  It would be abridging the agency of the individual who invited the spirit for any one to cause that spirit to depart, without the person’s leave; and we choose that all should exercise their own agency and responsibility, and then they are subjects of accountability.

Other spirits, not particularly invited or desired, gain an easy access to those who are careless, heedless, and but too indifferent to the statutes, ordinances, and duties of God’s kingdom; who neglect their prayers, their assembling together, and doing as they would be done unto; and from these spirits arise contention, strife, evil thinking, evil speaking, evil surmising, detraction, revenge, law-suits, and a host of such perplexing annoyances, sufficient to disturb a nation; but the man who is obedient to his God in all things, who knows no will of his own, only to do the will of his Father in the heavens, is free from these spirits; the Devil has no power over him, [220] for he resists him, and evil spirits are compelled to flee at his rebuke.

Some may ask, “How shall I know when I am operated upon by a false spirit?”  There are many keys by which the door of knowledge is unlocked to the Saints in relation to spirits, as well as other things pertaining to the kingdom; but one may suffice at the present time, for we have not designed this brief notice to cover all or any considerable portion of the ground which the subject includes.

The spirit of heaven is a spirit of peace, joy, comfort, consolation, and knowledge to its possessor, and all Saints who have enjoyed this spirit, (and all Saints have more or less) may know when this peaceful spirit dwelling within them is disturbed, that something is wrong, that some false spirit is lurking within or about them, striving to enter; and if they will resist the first impulse of their disturbed feelings and command Satan in the name of Jesus to depart, peace will instantly be restored to their souls.

It is not the wrong doings of others that destroy that peace within ourselves which the world can neither give nor take away; it is our own wrongs which cause that peaceful spirit to leave us; and would to God that His truth were indelibly imprinted on the heart and recollection of every Saint.  It is your own wrongs or evil spirits that destroy your peace, and not the wrongs of your friend or neighbor.  Know ye, all ye Saints, if the peace of heaven and a foretaste of the blessings of the celestial world are not continually with you, there is something wrong within; some foul spirit has got possession of yourself, and the quicker you dispossess it, the better.

Carry out this principle, and what will be the result?  Every Saint will live by his creed, and “mind his own business.”  Every dear wife will look with a zealous eye towards the happiness and welfare of her dear husband, and if she is tempted to think he is doing wrong, she will say, Get thee behind me, Satan; that is none of my business.  I will do right, and that is enough for me, and I shall have peace in my soul.  And so continue to do, till he has done so wrong that forbearance is no longer a virtue, then give him a divorce and do better if you can; but while [221] you live with him, live in peace, and keep jealousy out of doors; if you don’t, you will always have hell within, and devils enough to carry it on.  The moment you are jealous that your husband is wrong, that moment you are miserable, that misery is proof positive that you yourself are wrong, for it destroys your peace.

Jealous husbands are quite as bad and a little less excusable (if there can be any excuse) than jealous wives.  Husbands, if your wives do wrong, teach them better if they are willing to be taught, and if they are not, keep out of their way till they are willing, and no quarreling between you.  You need not fret your soul because your dear wife does wrong.  Don’t let the devil destroy your peace and cause the Holy Ghost to depart from you, because your wife has given way to a bad spirit.  Show yourself a man of God; be at peace with yourself, pray for her, and when she has been buffeted by the devil long enough, she will get tired of him, leave him, and return to you.

Some husbands are so mighty big because they are the head, that the wife has no room in the house; if she thinks, she thinks wrong; if she speaks, she speaks wrong; if she acts, she acts wrong; she can’t do a right thing for the life of her; and do what she will, no matter, she is as likely to get a cuffed ear as anything else, and a little more so; and if she should ask forgiveness, she would meet with the consoling retort from her dear lord, “yes, and you’ll do the same thing again next minute.”  Why all this?  Because the dear husband, the great lord of the house, has got so many devils in him, they make him so big there is not room for anybody else in that house.

The things of which we speak are but too common among the nations of Christendom, and too much of them have been brought together among the Saints; but it is time for Saints to stop such things.  Husbands, love and cherish your wives as you ought; give them their place, their rights, their dominion, that they may act upon their agency, as you do on yours; and quit your fretting, and snarling, and quarreling with them, if you ever did it.  What, a man quarrel with himself?  Yes, just as well as quarrel with his wife–’tis all the same.

If there is one solitary case, such as we have supposed, among the Saints, we would venture a prescrip-[222]tion.  What, are you a doctor?  We make no such pretensions, but men may say that we are.  Let the husband who wants a quarrel with his wife go to some deep, remote canyon, where no human voice was ever heard or foot trod, there strip and fight till you are tired of it; then come home and behave yourself.

Let the wife who wants to pick a quarrel with her husband, retire to some dark room or cellar, which contains nothing but bare walls and total darkness, and there fight till you are tired of fighting; then return to your family and behave yourself.  And when husband and wife have got through with their fights, they will each be willing to acknowledge that they had had as many devils in them as Mary Magdalene, or they would not have been such fools as to fight themselves at such fearful odds; and if they don’t, we’ll make another gratis prescription. (Mill. Star, vol. 14, pp. 277-280)


Remarks of Heber C. Kimball

July 11, 1852


After Elder Daniel Tyler had addressed the congregation on the first principles of the Gospel, President Kimball bore the following testimony:

I have been much interested in the principles that have been laid before us by Bro. Daniel Tyler.  He is a man with whom I have been acquainted for many years, and I know him to be a good man.  I can say truly that I have heard the gospel presented before us this morning as it is recorded in the New Testament.

You know that is generally understood, and perhaps by many of the strangers who are present today, that we do not believe the Bible.  That is a great mistake–we do believe it.  I can say, as one of the apostles of old said, and it is my advice and instruction to you, prove all things and try all things and hold fast to that which is good.  As he exhorted you to prove these things, to investigate them, and reflect upon them, and prove the truth of that which is called Mormonism, let me tell you, gentlemen, the day will come, if you don’t do it, you will be sorry.  Why?  Because there is a future day that will determine these things.

[223]  It will be but a few years, perhaps not to exceed 50, that not a person here this day will then be upon the earth.  You will go into the world of spirits to try the realities of another state of existence.  What we have to do, we must do in this state of existence, while in our tabernacles of flesh; and if we make good use of our lives, and of our bodies, and of our talents, it will be well with us; but if we do not, we have to give an account of the deeds done in the body.  These bodies are given to you by the same Being that gave to me my body; and they are committed to you as a stewardship by that God who placed us here; and you have got to give an account of your stewardship and the course you take.  If you permit that tabernacle to become polluted, and if your spirit suffers your body to be contaminated with sin and corruption, you will have to make an atonement for it before you can get your redemption worked out. Gentlemen, mark it, for it is even so.

This is the gospel which has been taught to us today in a plain and simple manner, and in that simplicity that it was taught by Jesus Christ and his apostles and by many others who were ordained by them.  The people profess to believe the Bible; the whole Christian world profess to believe that book, to believe that it is the Bible; but do they believe what is in the Bible?  If they do, they don’t practice it.  How many of you, my brethren and fellow travelers to eternity, how many times have you said in your day and in your generation and in your family circles, “If I could see one man practice that religion that was taught by Jesus and His apostles, I would be a Saint.”  I have said it many times, before I ever heard of Mormonism, and have sought for these things and wished for them, and prayed for them according to the knowledge I then had.  But what did I know about God or about the gospel, by what I heard from the pulpits of the day?

I have been at the Methodists’ meeting many a time and followed up their protracted meetings and sought for religion; and when they are converted to the faith of Methodism, I have seen the priest go to the water because some wished to be baptized in the water, but not because it was at all necessary.  One would say, I want to be sprinkled; another, I want to have the water poured upon [224] me; and another, I want to be plunged.  All right, says the minister, either of these is just as necessary as the other, for none of them are essential to salvation; we only attend to them to satisfy the candidate.  Suppose the laws of the United States were made upon this principle, just to suit everybody’s fancy and notions; making laws for everyone to do just as they pleased; what kind of laws would they be?  What would you think of such a law-making department?  Would you sustain it?  Would you send to it a man, as a delegate, to represent your case, to make wholesome laws that would give every man his rights and privileges?  I would not have such a law, but I would cast it out with those who made it.

God has one mode of saving men and women, and you cannot be saved upon any other principle than that which Jesus Christ taught, and I know it.  I can say to this congregation, and to every other, which thing I have said in the United States and in great Britain, except you receive the words of Jesus Christ and those that are ordained and sent forth by Him, you are just as sure of damnation as you are sure of dying; and I know it.  These things are plain; and the gospel that Bro. Daniel has spoken has been revealed in these last times.  That light that was once extinguished by wickedness, has been lit up again.  The ancient Gospel is again revealed and the Priesthood of the Son of God; and the Latter-Day Saints have this power, and you cannot help yourselves.  That is why we are here today; that is the reason why I am here today, in a land of peace and plenty and a healthy location, with my brethren who have come here to find a good home.  Don’t you find the people here peaceable, and kind, and affectionate, attending to their own business?  Did you ever find a more peaceable place in your life in the United States or in England, or in any part of the world than this?  No, I defy you to find any more peaceable place than this.  The reason we are here in these silent valleys is because we could not have the privilege of worshipping God according to his requirements, in our native country.  Some of you may say, “I can scarcely believe that;” but as sure as you live, I have been robbed and broken up six times before I came here, and was forced to leave my habitation and my substance. It is there [225] now, and they are welcome to it.  I am not the only person who has suffered so by a great many–and all because of my religion.  We are looked upon as the worst kind of beings on the earth. Did you ever think of a wicked thing but what it was placed upon us?

Joseph Smith and his brother were killed in Carthage Jail.  Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, and I know it.  I am not testifying to this because I have believed it so long, but I knew it 20 years ago, just as well as I do now, and have testified of it to the nations of the earth; and what will be the consequences of this testimony?  He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved, and they shall receive the Holy Ghost under the hands of those who have due authority to confer that blessing; and if they go forward and are baptized with full purpose of heart, believing with all their soul, obeying the gospel, being buried with Christ by baptism, they shall obtain the Holy Ghost.

On the day of Pentecost when Peter proclaimed the gospel, about 3000 souls were added to the church that day.  How long did it take them to repent?  No longer than they were willing to believe and put away their sins, with a determination to forsake them and not sin again.

I rejoice that I live in this day and age of the world; I rejoice that I have passed through what I have for the gospel’s sake; but will it compare to what men passed through in the days of Jesus, who was hung upon a cross for his religion?  He expired upon Calvary for his religion; they killed Him as a false prophet, and even those of His own household did not believe in Him; they also slew His apostles and those who believed in them.  Don’t you suppose it was as degrading to them to believe in Jesus Christ, as for us to believe that Joseph Smith is a prophet?  He was a prophet and was a son of God; and Hyrum Smith was a patriarch and a son of God; and I bear witness of it unto all men.  Many feel to damn the Mormons and call them everything that is evil; does it harm us?  Does it affect our salvation in the least?  No!  The more patiently we bear it, the greater will be our glory and exaltation.  It is because of our religion that the people are in trouble.

[226]  In the United States they are troubled about it; in Great Britain, France, and Denmark, they are troubled about it.  The priests of the day are stoutly crying false prophet and delusion, and the invisible world are rapping, muttering, and peeping, and they are finding fault.  They are at a loss to know what can be the matter.  The invisible world is in trouble; they are knocking, and rapping, and muttering, and the people are inquiring of them to know concerning the things of God; and there is not a soul of them can tell them anything about the end of the world.  They are in a dreadful situation; and in the city of Rochester, near where I used to live, the last information I received from there, there were 135 spiritual waters in that city.  I have a brother-in-law there who is a Presbyterian priest; he couldn’t inquire about future things of God, so he inquired of the spirits; but they could not tell him anything about the dead nor the living.  They are just about as intelligent in their revelations as this world is in theirs.  They are all in commotion; what is going to be done?  I will tell you: God is going to make a short work upon the earth, and the invisible world is troubled about it.  You do not doubt that, gentlemen; you who come from the United States can see that it is so; and the people are troubled in New York, and in many of the other states, so that they cannot rest, no not a day.  They are in confusion, and so dispirited they know not what to do.  The idea strikes me that the day of the Lord is approaching, and nearer than you think it is.  You are here in quest of gold, but there is something here worth more than the glittering jewels of the earth.  I say, let me serve God and keep His commandments, and you may have the gold and all the riches and wealth of the earth and welcome; I care nothing about it, for all you can take with you when you leave this earth is not much.

A dream that my own daughter had lately comes forcibly to my mind.  I will relate it.  She dreamed that she was driven, and those that were with her, but they had a great many fine things in the earth in the shape of furniture, gold and silver, and everything else; and she suffered in her feeling, because she was under the necessity of leaving all and could not take anything out of the world with her.  Finally she was permitted to take a white dress. [227] I said to her, that is all we can take; in our shroud we shall be laid in the silent tomb.  Naked we came into the world, and naked we shall go out of it, for dust we are, and unto dust we shall return.  Can you help yourselves?  If you can, you have more power than I have.  I expect to be laid low, with all the human family, as was the Son of God, and I cannot help myself.  I know your feelings; I have seen the day when I loved gold and silver and fine carriages and fine horses and the good things of this world; but I have lost those feelings, and may God ever continue to separate them from me, as far as the east is from the west; and let my affections be upon Him and His kingdom, until I breathe my last breath.

I know if I never go to the United States again, or to Great Britain, my skirts are clear from the blood of this generation.  I have received nothing but ill wages from my labor from them, and if ever a man did his duty, I have done it to this generation.  I have told you the truth, and whether you are in hell or in heaven, you shall know that Mormonism is true; and what I and my brethren have told you this day, is the gospel of salvation; so may God have mercy upon you and save you in His kingdom, Amen. (Mill. Star, vol. 14, pp. 277-280; Des. News, Sept. 4, 1852)


Remarks by Brigham Young

July 11, 1852


When Prest. Kimball closed, Prest. B. Young arose and delivered the following testimony:

There are a few minutes more of time allotted to us for worship this morning, which I will occupy for the consolation of my hearers and for my own.

I can bear testimony that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true, and the word of the Lord, whether written or spoken, is true.

Permit me to ask a question: Who are the individuals upon the face of the earth that can make this statement in truth?  Who are the individuals that can say that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true and that He lives?  Can the Christian world?  They cannot.  They may say that they believe and have all confidence that Jesus lives; they may have all confidence in declaring that the Gospel of Jesus [228] Christ is true; they may firmly declare that the Bible (referring particularly to the New Testament) is true; that therein contained is the plan of salvation and is true.  This they may declare in all good conscience, and with all soberness.  But let me ask, where are the individuals that can say that they know that Jesus lives, and who are the individuals that can say that this Gospel is true and is the plan of salvation to man?  I will let Christendom answer this question for themselves; but to me it is certain, that no man lives on the face of the earth–no woman lives–that can say this except those to whom Christ has revealed Himself.

Though others may say in all good conscience they believe He lives, who knows the doctrine of the Lord Jesus Christ to be true?  There is one class of people, and one only that lives upon the face of the earth who do know it, and that class of men and women are those that keep His commandments, and do His will; none others can say it.  None others can declare with boldness and emphatically, that Jesus lives and that His Gospel is true.  Upon the plain and simple principle of logical and philosophical deduction, we learn this from His own words as written by one of His disciples: “They that do my will, shall know of my doctrine, and they that love me will keep my commandments;” and I will add, “they that know and love me,” says Jesus, “will keep my sayings.”

This is my testimony.  We have had the first principles of the gospel laid before us this morning, and we have heard the testimony of one of the apostles of the last days to confirm it.  I am also a witness to the truth of these sayings contained in the New Testament.

Permit me, my hearers, brethren and strangers, to say to you, there is not that man that hears the sound of my voice this day that can say that Jesus lives, whether they profess to be His disciples or not, and can say at the same time that Joseph Smith was not a prophet of the Lord.

There is not that being that ever had the privilege of hearing the way of life and salvation set before them as it is written in the New Testament and in the Book of Mormon, and in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants by a Latter-Day Saint, can say that Jesus lives, that His Gospel [229] is true, and at the same time say that Joseph Smith was not a prophet of God.  That is strong testimony, but it is true.  No man can say that this book (laying his hand on the Bible) is true, is the word of the Lord, is the way, and is the guide-board in the path, and a charter by which we may learn the will of God, and at the same time say that the Book of Mormon is untrue.  Those who have had the privilege of reading it or of hearing it read and learning its doctrines, there is not that person on the face of the earth who has had the privilege of learning the Gospel of Jesus Christ from these two books, can say that one is true and the other is false.  No Latter-Day Saint, no man or woman, can say the Book of Mormon is true, and at the same time say that the Bible is untrue.  If one is true, both are; and if one is false, both are false.

If Jesus lives and is the Savior of the world, Joseph Smith is a prophet of God, and lives in the bosom of his father Abraham.  Though they have killed his body, yet he lives and beholds the face of his Father in heaven, and his garments are pure as the angels that surround the throne of God; and no man on the earth can say that Jesus lives, and deny at the same time my assertion about the Prophet Joseph.  This is my testimony and it is strong.

Permit me to say that I am proud of my religion.  It is the only thing I pride myself in on the earth.  I may heap up gold and silver like the mountains; I may gather around me property, goods and chattels, but I could have no glory in that, compared with my religion; it is the fountain of light and intelligence; it swallows up the truth contained in all the philosophy of the world, both heathen and Christian; it circumscribes the wisdom of man; it circumscribes all the wisdom and power of the world; it reaches to that within the veil.  Its bounds, its circumference, its end, its height, and depth, are beyond the comprehension of mortals, for it has none.

Permit me to remark, my hearers, as for the intelligence of the day and the knowledge that they have had in Christendom, how long will it take a man of reflection, of deep thought, and of a sound mind, to circumscribe every particle of it?  It can be weighed and measured, as easy as we can the gold dust.  For instance, go to the other church from whence all the religions of [230] Christendom have sprung; go back to the time when she flourished in his glory; and how long would it take us to circumscribe the religion of the mother church, the “holy Catholic church?”  Can’t we learn the principles of that church in a very few years?  We can study her theology until we get all the knowledge and wisdom to be had upon every point of doctrine contained in her from first to last.  Go then to the Church of England, and from that to the latest and last reformer that lived upon the earth, and how long would it take to circumscribe every particle of their religion from first to last?  Not long.

Why do I make these remarks and assertions?  It is because I have an experience.  All the religion of the world I have learned already.  The best and greatest divines that lived in my boyhood, I may say almost in my childhood, and children not as old as I was at the time, almost babes and sucklings, would drown them in their own arguments and confuse them. Question them, and they cannot answer the simplest question concerning the character of the Deity, heaven, or hell, this or that or the other; a sucking child would comparatively confuse and confound them upon these subjects and they would wind up all by saying, “Great is the mystery of Godliness, God manifest in the flesh.”  I would say, great is their foolery; they are profound in their ignorance.

But I am proud to say of my religion, I have studied it faithfully for 22 years, day and night, at home and abroad, upon the rivers and upon the lakes, when traveling by sea and by land; have studied it in the pulpit from morning till night; whatsoever might be my pursuit, I have studied it with as close an application as any college student ever did any subject he wished to commit to memory; and I can say I have only just got into the A, B, C’s of it; it leads the vision of my mind into eternity.

Suppose the Almighty should unfold the future destiny of the nations to you, and wrap you in a sea of vision and show you the eternity of knowledge with the history of worlds on worlds and their destiny; you can then have a faint idea of what it is like, and any other man or any other woman, whoever has received the promise of the Gospel, knows that the Lord Almighty is in the midst of all His creatures that are scattered abroad [231] among the nations of the earth, and does His pleasure among them.  His scrutinizing eye will not suffer a hair of your head to fall to the ground unnoticed; His attention is at once so minute and so extensive.

He presides over the worlds on worlds that illuminate this little planet, and millions on millions of worlds that we cannot see, and yet he looks upon the minutest object of His creations; not one of these creatures escapes His notice; and there is not one of them but His wisdom and power has produced.  But that is no matter to me; I speak with regard to you. Is there a man who believes or professes to believe in what Jesus says were he declared by one of his apostles or by more than one pointedly?  There is no half-way mark in this matter.  Now if you can believe, it is directly to the point; says he, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments;” and if you don’t love me, you will not keep my commandments; this follows as a matter of course; and that will show to my father and to my brethren that follow me, that you do love me; and so say I: they that love the Lord Jesus will keep His commandments.

Why should I not be proud of my religion if a man is permitted to have pride at all?  Or if their people are permitted to indulge in it in the least degree, why not be proud of their religion, for God loves it, angels adore it, all the heavenly hosts delight in it; it is in the midst of an eternity of intelligence and forms a part of it; while on the other hand, all hell is opposed to it; all wickedness is opposed to it; every man and woman who desires to make sin their refuge hate it; and all hell and all its votaries hate it, and the Lord Almighty with all His subjects love it, and He will yet rule triumphantly over this earth.

What shall we say?  Will not Jesus reign and subdue the world?  Is He not the Savior of the world, and the only begotten Son of the Father, and will He not accomplish the work He came to accomplish?  Is not the earth the Lord’s, the wheat, the fine flour, the gold, the silver, the earth, and all its fullness?  Can you imagine to yourselves anything that pertains to this earth that does not belong to its Redeemer?  He is my master, my elder brother.  He is the character I look to and the one I try to serve to the best of my ability.  Should I not be proud of my religion?  I [232] think if pride can at all be indulged in, the Latter-Day Saints should be proud.

I know there are a great many people who are not acquainted with the history of this people; I am personally and most intimately acquainted with the history of Joseph Smith and this people for 22 years.  There are a great many people that are not; and they have thought we have been persecuted from state to state, and from place to place, because of our wickedness and lawless acts among the people.  I need not say it to my Father in Heaven, to Jesus Christ his Son, or to the holy angels, or the prophets and apostles who have lived in former or in latter days, for they know it; but I can say to those who do not understand and know our history, that it is because we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and do just as He has told us, and not because of the evil acts of Joseph Smith, have we been persecuted.

Joseph Smith was not killed because he was deserving of it, nor because he was a wicked man, but because he was a virtuous man.  I know that to be so, as well as I know that the sun now shines.  Every man and woman who does the will of the Father, and will keep the commandments of Jesus Christ, may also know as well as myself; it is their privilege.  I know it for myself; Joseph Smith was the subject of 48 law suits, and the most of them I have witnessed with my own eyes; but not one action could ever be made to bear against him.  No law or any constitutional right did he ever violate.  He was innocent and virtuous; he kept the law of his country and lived above it; out of 48 law-suits, (and I was with him in the most of them) not one charge could be substantiated against him.  He was pure, just, and holy as to the keeping of the law.  Now this I state for the satisfaction of those who do not know our history; but the Lord and the angels know all about it.

Let me ask another question: do the people know what we were driven from Missouri for?  An old friend of mine called upon me day before yesterday.  He said he had been watching my course, had looked and acquired after me, and had endeavored to find out my history for we were friends.  I asked him if he knew anything about the Latter Day-Saints or not?  I found he had been looking after me [233] and had learned I had become a follower of Joseph Smith.  I said, do you know anything about our history?  By his reply I found he knew nothing at all of it, in comparison.

A great many are in like situation.  Now let me relate one item of it–not for those who are wise and pretend to be filled with knowledge and at the same time they know nothing; but I relate it for the information of those who know nothing about it.  To my certain knowledge, men and women left the counties of Davis and Caldwell in the upper part of the State of Missouri, set fire to their own buildings, drove off their cattle, killed and slayed, (I know and could name the people) and then swore the Mormons had done it.  Now this circumstance came under my certain knowledge.  Says I, can it be possible that men can become so corrupt and so sunken in wickedness?  I say this for the information of those who do not understand and know this people from the beginning; from the first day I knew Bro. Joseph to the day of his death, a better man never lived upon the face of this earth.

From the days of my youth and I will say from the day that I came upon the stage of action to act for myself, there never was a boy, a man, either old or middle-aged, that ever tried to live a life more pure and refined than your humble servant.  As I told my friend, says I, Brother Brown, I have tried to make myself a better man from the day of our first acquaintance to this.  I have not infringed upon any law nor trod upon the rights of my neighbors; but I have tried to walk in the paths of righteousness and live an humble life, that I might gain eternal happiness. I make bold to speak thus; though in the eastern world it is quite unpopular to speak in one’s own praise; but since I have become a western man, I can make stump speeches.  Why am I persecuted and forced to leave thousands and thousand of dollars worth of property in Ohio, Missouri and Illinois?  Though I have never looked back upon it, it is as ashes under my feet, I am in the hands of God; He gave it, and He took it away, and blessed be the name of the Lord.

I am in His hands; all men are in His hands, and He has turned the enemy in His way, and held them by His power.  It is not me, it is not Joseph, it is not this people nor the wisdom they possess that has delivered them from [234] their enemies, but it is the Lord; He is our captain, our pilot, and our master; and in Him do we glory and will glory.  Let the world say what they please, we will glory in our holy religion, and God will we serve.  And furthermore let me remark, I am not afraid, nor ashamed to expose and oppose the iniquity of men, though they may stand in high places; neither was Joseph Smith, neither am I.  Let death come, no matter for that; who cares for it?

I am aware, as well as Bro. Kimball, if my body falls into the dust, I am laying it down to abide the penalty of the law broken in the fall of man, for dust I am and unto dust I must return.  It is all right to me; I have seen a great many times that I would like to have this body lie down, but as long as the spirit and body hold together, my tongue shall be swift against evil, the Lord Almighty being my helper; my tongue shall be swift against evil; and if evil come, let it come; if for this my body shall fall, let it fall.  When they have destroyed the body, then they have no more that they can do; that is the end of their power and of the power of the devil on this earth.  But Jesus Christ has power to destroy both soul and body in hell.  I thank you for your attention.  May the Lord bless you, Amen. (Des. News, Sept. 4, 1852)


Celebration of the Fifth Anniversary

of the Pioneers Coming into the Valley

Brigham Young

July 24, 1852


I wish to make a few remarks only to this congregation, as the time allotted to us this morning is far spent.  The remarks which have been made previous to my rising are very good, as they are also true.  They are things not fresh to the majority of this assembly, though there may be some present who were perhaps ignorant of them.

Suffice it to say that five years ago this day, the pioneers approached this valley with their implements of husbandry, etc, which were represented by them in the procession today.  We came for the purpose of finding a place to set our feet, where we could dwell in peace.  That place we have found.  If the Saints cannot enjoy that peace which is so dear to them here, I would say that I am [235] ignorant of the spot on the earth where they can.  Where could a place have been found where we might enjoy freedom of thought, freedom of speech, and freedom of worship?  If not in these mountains, I am ignorant of the place.

We have enjoyed perfect peace here for 5 years, and I trust we shall for many fives to come.  If the Saints are persecuted, it is for their good; if they are driven, it is for their good; consequently, when I reflect, I have nothing to fear in all the persecutions or hardships I may pass through in connection with this people but one thing: and that is to stray from the religion I have embraced and be forsaken of my God.  If you or I should see that day, we shall see at once that the world will love its own; and affliction, persecutions, and death and fire and the sword will cease to follow us.

If the Latter-Day Saints magnify their calling, walk humbly before their God, and do the things that are pleasing to their Father in Heaven, walk up to their duty in every respect, I am bold to say that not five years only, but scores of years will pass away without the saints ever being interrupted or driven again from their possessions; thus far it is for our good.

I did not rise for the purpose of delivering an oration on this occasion, but to remind you of the blessings we now are privileged to enjoy.  When we first approached this valley, there was not a man upon the face of the earth who ever had beheld these valleys of the mountains, or knew anything of the Great Basin, who knew that corn or any other kind of grain could be raised here; can you find the man who had any knowledge of the Great Basin, as it is called, that believed there could be an ear of corn ripened in it?  There is not that man on the earth, when you have excepted the people called Latter-Day Saints.  We came here and planted our garden seeds of various kinds five years ago this day; they grew but they did not ripen, though the buckwheat would have opened, perhaps, had it been properly taken care of; some other grains would also have come to maturity so as to have assisted a small colony to live here; they, however, lived; how?  Shall I say by faith?  Yes, partially so; for had they not had faith, they certainly never would have come to this place; it is [236] the faith of the L.D.S. that brought them here.  There is a very mysterious principle that abides with this people; it is a mystery and one of the greatest mysteries to the inhabitants of the earth, that have been made acquainted by history, or by knowledge, with this people.  What is this great mystery?  And what makes it more singular, say they; by all our calculations we cannot conceive of it; it is so mysterious that it absolutely amounts to a miracle; it is that these Latter-Day Saints are of one heart, and of one mind.

To saint and sinner, believer and unbeliever, I wish here to offer one word of advice and counsel, by revealing the mystery that abides with this people called Latter-Day Saints–it is the Spirit of the living God that leads them; it is the Spirit of the Almighty that binds them together; it is the Spirit of the Holy Ghost that makes them love each other like little children; it is the Spirit of Jesus Christ that makes them willing to lay down their lives for the cause of truth; and it was that same Spirit that caused Joseph, our martyred prophet, to lay down his life for the testimony of what the Lord revealed to him.  This mystery, the great mystery of Mormons, is that the Spirit of the Lord binds the hearts of the people together.  Let the world look at it.  This I say by way of exhortation, if you please.  Let the inhabitants of the earth gaze upon this people, this wondrous people, for a magic power attends them; something mysterious hangs around them.  What is it?  It is not magnetism; it is something more wonderful; those that are present this day may truly say it is wonderful in the extreme.  Who gives me power that “at the pointing of my finger” the hosts of Israel move, and at my request the inhabitants of this great territory are displaced; at my command they are here?  Who gives me that power?  Let the world inquire?  It is the God of heaven; it is the spirit of the holy Gospel; it is not of myself; it is the Lord Jesus Christ, trying to save the inhabitants of the earth.

The people are here; they endure.  Did they bring their bread with them?  No.  Did they bring their meat with them?  No.  Did they bring that that sustained them until they raised it from the earth?  They could not do it, for they were obliged to bring tools, plows, drag chains, etc.; they were obliged to bring their wives and children in [237] their wagons; five and six and eight, and in some wagons ten people would get huddled together, to drive a thousand miles from all sustenance, and there plant themselves in the wilderness where nothing met the eye but snowy peaks and parched vales, and trust in the God of Israel to sustain them.  Let the world ask the question, would the Methodists thus run the hazard of losing their lives for their religion?  Would the Presbyterians, the Baptists, the Quakers, or their old mother, the Roman Catholic Church, run the same risk?  Would she venture thus in the wilderness?  No.  It is not very common to find a whole people on the earth, as in the case of the Latter-Day Saints, who would do it, though single individuals might be found so enthusiastic as to sacrifice their lives and run into a lion’s den in proof of their faith in their religion; but where are the tens of thousands and the scores of thousands and the hundreds of thousands, who would lay down every principle of life and happiness, and everything that is desirable pertaining to this world or the principles of eternal life, and would go forth into the wilderness, having no other stay but the hand of God to lead them?  They are not to be found!

We meet here and celebrate the day; five years we have been in this valley, and I will say to the newcomers, our brethren, or those who are not our brethren, three years ago last October, the first house was reared in this place.  There was not a rod of fence or a house except the old fort and a little log cabin.  Here we are now spread out from the east to the west, measurably so, but more extensively to the north and the south; travel through the valleys and scan the houses, and the farms, and see the improvements that have been made; take the back track of the Mormons; follow them from here to Nauvoo; from Nauvoo to Far West, then to Kirtland, and back to Missouri again to Jackson County, and all people will acknowledge that the Mormons have had enough to do to mind their own business, and make the improvements that have been performed by them; they have done nothing but mind their own business.  Look at the improvements that have followed this people in all their travels up to this place, for a testimony of their endurance and unflinching industry.

[238]  I say to this community, be humble, be faithful to your God, true to His church, benevolent to the strangers that may pass through our territory, and kind to all people, serving the Lord with all your might, trusting in Him.  But never fear the frowns of an enemy or be moved, by the flatteries of friends or of enemies, from the path of right.  Serve your God; believe in Him; and never be ashamed of Him; and sustain your character before Him, for very soon we will meet in a larger congregation than this and have a celebration far superior; we will celebrate our perfect and absolute deliverance from the power of the Devil; we only celebrate now our deliverance from the good brick houses we have left; from our farms and lands, and from the graves of our fathers; we celebrate our perfect deliverance from these.

Our lives have been spared, and we are yet upon this planet, and by and by we will celebrate a perfect deliverance from all the powers of earth, and we will keep our eyes set upon the mark and go forward to victory.

I say to the aged, to the middle-aged, and to the young–all be true to your God, true to your brethren, and kind to all, serving God with all your heart, and may He bless you for Jesus’ sake, Amen. (Des. News, Aug. 21, 1852)


Pioneer Celebration Speech

Daniel H. Wells

July 24, 1852


Brethren and Friends: The annual greeting has again arrived, redolent with the rich fruits of the earth and the summer harvest.

Here amid the clear sunshine of the human heart, where all is peace and joy and gladness, which maketh merry, beams forth from the overflowing soul, let us render unto our Father in Heaven a tribute of praise, thanksgiving and adoration, for His kindness unto us and the magnificent blessings which we enjoy and receive from his all-bountiful hand.

Brethren and friends, in the days of our prosperity, while we have health, strength, and peace, we should be mindful of our duties pertaining to our eternal welfare.  In [239] adversity the mournful heart seeks and reaches after God.  We call upon Him in the abundance of the heart’s affliction, and He hearkens in much mercy unto the wail of sorrow and woe.  Then, why forget to remember and call upon Him, when prosperity gladdens and cheers our pathway?  Let, then, the happy aspirations of the glad soul arise in unison before the throne of the Most High, in humble praise and adoration; and let us worship in sincerity and truth the God whom we adore, invoking the continuance of His kind blessings and care over us and all our works and everything pertaining to our existence.

There is an intense feeling and sense of secret joy to the human heart, emanating from the innermost soul, upon the consideration of the faithful discharge of our daily duties, when toil has wearied our minds and our bodies; and we would fain rest us of our wearied existence; the very thought that we are in the service of our God, that we are living in the faithful performance and discharge of our duties, and are not throwing away our existence, but are completing and fulfilling the measure thereof in accordance with the rising of our being and of our Maker, who is God, inspires us with new vigor, re-enlivens the springs of nature, and with a thrill of joy and emotions of unutterable delight, we renew our exertions, redouble our efforts, and eradicate from our bosoms every vestige of a disposition to repent, lament, or complain.

In this vast congregation who are assembled to commemorate this day, we find represented among many others–from the honored and aged fathers and mothers to the little child–a class of citizens upon whose character and history we take a delight in contemplating.  Of the hardy, the brave, the venturesome pioneers, a few are here, with their sun-brown visages, while others of their number are again away upon their favorite mission seeking out new locations, and planting new colonies, amid dangers unfeared, and toil and hardships unheeded.  So are the remote regions of the vast public domain reclaimed from the solitude of ages and made to contribute to the sustenance of man, and being ushered into the family of nations, made to swell the current of civilized existence and extend the area of freedom’s circle.

[240]  But it is not to this class of Columbia’s hardiest freemen to which I wish to direct your attention; the star of their fame is in the ascendant; their names are immortalized in every country, town, and borough; the very streets will echo their names in all time to come; their story is told by the fireside, as well as in halls of state, and has been stored in immortal song.

But who are they of whom I would speak–of whom it has been said a more faithful and public spirited, self denying, and preserving race does not exist?  I allude to the men who are the spirit of the _________(?) and whose work and influence pervades the whole, even every organization of society; in the world, among all people, they are known as the most energetic and enterprising class of citizens; in our city and territory and among this people, they not only possess the same distinguishing characteristics, but unlike them are also distinguished by their faith and good works, without the usual _______(?) which self interest inspires.

Yes, my friends and brethren, there is a class of citizens before you who devote all their talents, time, labor, means, and all that they can control, to the building up of the Kingdom of God upon the earth, who are sacredly devoted to this cause, the construction of temples to His holy name, wherein He can receive the oblations and sacrifice of His people and bestow upon them of the inexhaustible riches of His wisdom and understanding.  Who are they?  Let the Temple at Kirtland, the erection of which was complete under the most extraordinary pecuniary embarrassments that ever swept over any people, answer.  Let Nauvoo also speak, when half dead with ague, on half rations of corn meal alone, with a sword or gun in one hand and trowel or hammer in the other, they achieved the erection of one of the most splendid edifices the nation could boast; in time only, it is true, to receive the peltings of the war dogs, the sacrilege of the barbarous and ruthless mobocrat, who celebrated their own deathless infamy and disgrace by its destruction.  Splendid in her ruins, she yet remains matchless in the beauty and symmetry of her workmanship, equally commemorative of the superior skill, ingenuity, and [241] wisdom of the workmen and their martyred Prophet, who designed the same.

Again, let Deseret’s fair vales respond to the inquiry who they are, that have broken the monotony of the sad and solitary place and brought forth, as if by magic, a greater work in the way of improvements than was ever before accomplished, under similar circumstances; behold, their works again speak for them, rising on every side, in every form approximating towards the erecting, in the tops of the mountains, the “house of the God of Jacob.”  They are as represented upon their banner “Zion’s Workmen.”

Toil on, ye brave hearts, and remember that you are filling a mission of the utmost importance upon the earth; you have the privilege accorded to but few of earth’s best citizens, of doing the work of the Lord who is your God; it is your privilege if you will do it; if not, He will call those who will.  It is a privilege to exist in this age of the world.  It is a privilege to enjoy the peaceful influence of truths sublime, emanating from the God we serve, through His servants the prophets.  It is a privilege to suffer for His and the Gospel’s sake, for the reward is great.  It is also the greatest boon of all to have the privilege of doing good and of being a benefit to our fellows and to the cause of our God.  Let us not permit an opportunity to pass unimproved; never neglect the opportunity of doing a good deed, lest it may pass and not again occur, and we thereby lose our reward; but remember to “work while the day lasts, for the night cometh when no man can work.”

Brethren of the Public Works, let your souls be filled with the gratifying reflection, that to you is given the privilege of building cities and temples to the name of the Most High God, and of adorning the inner courts of the most holy place; yea, more–to dwell within its holy precincts and receive instruction from the Fountain of all intelligence.

In common with all of the faithful saints, you too have suffered from the hands of relentless persecution.  The prairies of Missouri and Illinois have borne witness of your sufferings and the death of near and dear friends, whose fragile forms were not sufficient to endure the howling blast of fiendish ire nor the murderous mandates [242] of official mobs; but hold!  It is seditious to connect the world “official,” “legal,” or “government” with anything like mobs, oppression, or persecution.  True, it should be, for the simple reason that authorities should not be guilty of such charges; and if those articles of Political Economy do not relish to be told of such doings, I know of but one remedy, and that is not be guilty of them.  If the government of Missouri did not banish us by the authority of the government, then was not Lilburn W. Boggs their governor.  If the pledged faith of Illinois did not in cold blood murder Joseph and Hyrum Smith, then was not Thomas Ford governor of that state.  And if our Battalion was not drawn for the Mexican War while we were weltering under the effects of the most direful persecution and distressed circumstances, by the government of the United States, then was not James K. Polk president, nor Thomas H. Benton senator in her Congress.

But what of this?  Suppose even that men at the head of government should occasionally do wrong, is there no remedy, is there no appeal?  There is, and but one in a Republican form of government, and that is to the people.  Unfortunate, indeed, are those whom popular clamor shall cry down; for then the unfortunate party have to perish or endure, if it be possible for them to survive such contumely reproach and injury as their persecutors shall list.  Here, then, the government vests in the people, and justly, too, in order that recreant officials may be appealed in the ballot box, and be driven from the honorable positions which they may have disgraced; unquestionably should the silent voice of the ballot box hurl from office every ingrate, high or low, who should under any pretense whatever, desecrate by his polluted presence the Temple of Liberty; and every patriot should use his influence to produce so desirable a result.

If this is sedition, then am I not alone guilty?  And if gentlemen politicians feel aggrieved, all I ask is for them to hold me alone responsible, and not as heretofore, seek to bring down punishment upon a whole community for the honestly expressed sentiments of a single individual.

One more reflection, shall we forget our history?  If we do, we shall be unlike our revolutionary fathers, who take great care not only to commemorate theirs, but [243] impress upon their children every notable circumstance pertaining to the birth of freedom.  Shall we be less indifferent in regard to our early history, the more especially when the ground has drunk the blood of our friends and brethren in the boasted land of freedom’s choice?  Let it pass; we will remember it and teach our children also, that they may know upon what sacrifices the foundation of the Kingdom of our God was established upon the earth.

Howl on, ye ingratiate politicians, mobocrats, and pseudo judges; learn to know there is a people in whose bosoms the fire of patriotism burns with inextinguishable force, although the finer sensibilities are not yet quite destroyed or deadened so much, but they can yet feel the withering blast of popular violence unjustly received in the country they fain would serve, in a government which, although delinquent in the exercise of their aid and protection in times of greatest need, they still cherish and honor.

Learn to know the blood of patriot sires flows in their veins, and they have a due sense of what are their rights, and knowing, dare maintain them; and if your bloodthirstiness and inextinguishable desire for plundering an innocent people, shall again assemble your misbegotten, misshapen, and cowardly host, drunken with infuriate malice, and ignorant and unbounded prejudice, that you may come in your true colors and legal authority not withhold us while you wreak upon us your vengeance and thereby avert a final settlement.

Learn to know that freedom’s noblemen spurn your imbecile attempts to crush a free and virtuous people or deprive them of their rights.

They know themselves; they also know you; be satisfied, therefore, to remain in your own nothingness and not aspire to an unenviable notoriety of eternal disgrace and infamy.  And let all people learn these simple facts, that mobs, unrestrained in any government, will surely sap its foundation and ultimately prove its utter ruin and overthrow; also, that industry, well directed in the advancement of the peaceful avocations of life, cultivating the earth, and building up cities, are indications of a free, enlightened, and virtuous people.  Hide the blush of [244] shame that mantles your cheek, to have to be told of such manifest truth, and let your future actions betoken a sense of returning reason.

Let us return to our celebration of the 24th of July, 1852.  Five years have elapsed since our beloved President, Brigham Young, with 143 of Zion’s Camp, arrived in this valley.  Yonder, within a stone’s throw of this very place, they pitched their camp, and walking down into the pure mountain stream, renewed their covenants unto the Lord their God, and arising from the waters of baptism, sang a song of praise and thanksgiving unto his holy name.

They then dedicated this land and themselves to the Lord God of Israel, invoking His blessing upon all their efforts and upon the barren soil, as every appearance indicated it then to be.  How will the faith and prayers of those faithful men have been heard and answered by a faithful Providence?  Let the present fruitful fields and prosperous settlements answer.

Let the weariest traveler, who finds a cool retreat from the burning plains, while tasting the hospitable fare of Utah’s citizens, consider the difference, the contrast, betwixt today and five years ago upon this self-same spot; the reception of the pioneers at that time and their own reception now.  It is impossible to appreciate, to understand and comprehend the anxieties, the dubiety and misgivings of some, whether or not could grain be raised in so high an altitude, upon so poor a prospect for soil, thirsty with the drought of an eastern desert, all verdancy parched and crisped by the scorching sun, and the question, shall here we locate, doubtingly, shudderingly asked, fearful of an affirmative response, but the solution of; which has amply justified the wisdom that then dictated the decision.  Those only can realize who have passed through similar scenes, how men feel whose welcome was the whoop and yell of the wild Indian and the howl of the marauding coyote when awakened from the deep slumber of the night after the day’s toilsome march, only in time to find their horses gone, yet hearing their distant tread as the Indians who have swept the plain, overpowered the guard, and with lightning’s speed hie away to their secret retreats, where the silence of ages is only interrupted by these and the wild beasts’ orgies [245] over the spoils of war and strife–a thousand miles from civilized existence, and no bread in a country comparatively destitute of game.

These, my brethren and friends, are a few of the scenes which dwell upon the memory when refreshed upon the return of the anniversary we this day celebrate.  Refreshed by the presence of assembled thousands whose bosoms vibrate with patriotic emotions in witnessing the prosperity attending untiring perseverance and industry in rapidly advancing the infant state to adorn the constellation which will ere long o’erspread the horizon of the western continent, so may the time be hastened when the beacon of Columbia’s freedom shall illumine every recess of this continent of ours, exhibiting to all the world, a mirror in which tyrants can behold their fate, and the oppressed of every nation the way to obtain the enjoyment of natural freedom. (Des News, Aug. 21, 1852)



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