Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3
                               Journal of Discourses,
                                      Volume 3
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, September 16, 1855
                          Brigham Young, September 16, 1855
                                 GATHERING THE POOR.
           An address by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the Bowery, 
                      Great Salt Lake City, September 16, 1855.
               Concerning the Saints in these Valleys, and those who are
          abroad, I have a few remarks to make. The promises referred to by
          the brethren who have addressed you this morning are very
          reasonable--they are very judicious; they have promised to
          remember the poor in their prayers, and before their brethren in
          Zion. I have made the Saints some promises, and I am not aware
          that I have made any promises to them that I have not fulfilled,
          at least so far as I was personally concerned. I have promised
          myself that I would plead for the poor; I have done it--I have
          continued to do it--and I expect to continue to plead for the
          poor Saints. I have preached in the United States, in the British
          Provinces, and in the Island of Great Britain, and have
          invariably promised the Saints one blessing, viz., hard labor,
          hard fare, and plenty of persecution, if they would only live
          their religion, and I believe they are generally well satisfied
          that this promise has been amply fulfilled. If the Saints cannot
          endure, and endure to the end, they have no reason to expect
          eternal salvation.
          While brother Brown was speaking of the Saints in England, that
          they would probably be good Saints if they were nursed,
          nourished, and cherished, I had certain reflections. We gather
          the Saints, and gather those who are poor; what for? To bring to
          pass righteousness, but many of them turn and go to the devil. I
          will relate. Before we arrived in Winter Quarters we held
          obligations and accounts, against the poor Saints we had
          emigrated to America, to the amount of about thirty-five thousand
          dollars, and that too out of our own individual pockets--it was
          not Church money. But while we were in Winter Quarters, I do not
          think there could have been ten persons counted, old and young,
          who were brought from England by our liberality. Is this fact
          encouraging or discouraging? The honest poor are still suffering,
          I mean the Lord's poor. But you may take the devil's poor and the
          poor devils, and they will plead a thousand times harder to be
          brought out of England, to have their feet placed upon American
          soil, than the Lord's poor, or the honest poor. The devil's poor
          and the poor devils will manage to get here, while very many of
          the Lord's poor stay there and suffer, and continue to suffer
          until they lay down their bodies and sleep in the tomb. Thousands
          and thousands of them will do this, while that portion who call
          so loudly for help are those who will come here and then go to
          the devil.
          If there could be any rule by which the honest poor in England
          could be designated from the dishonest, if the wealthy of that
          nation could draw the line between them, allow me to tell you
          that but few of the honest inhabitants of that country would
          suffer as they now do for want of the common necessaries of life.
          What is the cause of so much suffering there? Why the poor devils
          get licence for begging, and beg from house to house, making a
          speculation of it; they beg money, bread, and clothing, and then
          speculate upon it, and thus abuse their friends and their gifts.
          There are thousands of houses in England kept by beggars, as fine
          houses as there are in that country, and their proprietors can
          ride in their coach and four: that there are such characters is
          well known among the people. Some of the large boarding houses in
          England are kept by them, and they hire men, women, and children
          to beg; they are licensed beggars. The women borrow their
          neighbor's children and carry them out to deceive the industrious
          and wealthy population, and thus they excite the sympathies of,
          and beg from, every passenger going into or coming out of a
          conveyance, and perhaps go to their homes twice or three times
          a-day loaded down with money. This is well known by the wealthy,
          but they cannot draw the line of distinction between them and the
          honest poor, hence they are obliged to suffer the consequences.
          Were it not for this the worthy poor would be fed and clothed in
          England. If the wealthy of that nation could know the truth they
          would feed the hungry and clothe the naked, honest, just, and
          virtuous portions of the community. But they do not know them,
          and if they give a loaf of bread or a sixpence, they expect it is
          given to a poor devil; this makes them very careful how they
          Has not a similar dishonesty the same effect upon us? It has, and
          that is what I wish to talk about. For example, a man in England,
          professing to be a Latter-day Saint, will go to his brother in
          the Church and promise, in the most sacred manner, and call God
          and angels to witness, and hope he may die, and not live to get
          to America, if he is not as prompt to his word as an angel, to
          pay him back at such a time, if he will lend him ten sovereigns
          to help him away to America; another will get five sovereigns in
          the same way; another will beg to be allowed to take so much out
          of a contribution box, promising to refund it, and saying, "When
          I get to the Saints, where there is liberty, and get work and
          good wages, I will remember you, my brethren, and send for you;"
          and when they get here they forget it all. This is the way with
          the devil's poor; the Lord's poor do not forget their covenants,
          while the devil's poor pay no regard to their promises. Are you
          afraid the devil's poor will apostatize? I am not afraid of it,
          though sooner of later they will. They may hang on to the Church
          for five, ten, or twenty years, but by and by, when they cannot
          endure what the Lord will bring upon them, they will falter and
          fall, and go by the board. 
          Now this is discouraging to every man who has been punctual to
          his word, and done just as he said he would. You will find men in
          England, who have said, out of their hard earnings, at ten
          shillings per week, five pounds, or ten pounds, handing it out as
          freely to their brethren as water to drink, saying, "Go to
          America now, and you will help me out." But these men forget
          their words, and when they have means they tie up their purse
          strings, before they will bestow their charity upon those who
          have assisted them.
          Do I receive promises? Yes, men will promise me, saying, "If you
          will let me go out this year by the means of the P. E. Fund, I
          will refund the means again, that you may have it to send back
          for more." And what will they do when they get here? Steal our
          wagons and go off with them to California, and try to steal the
          bake kettles, frying pans, tents, and wagon covers; and will
          borrow the oxen and run away with them, if you do not watch them
          closely. Do they all do this? No, but many of them will try to do
          it. We checked a number this year who were trying to run away
          with the wagons, instead of paying their just debts to the Fund.
          They will hang on and plead poverty and sickness, and say that
          they cannot live unless they have this tent, or that wagon, and
          when they get it into their possession they will never return it,
          unless they are compelled to.
          This conduct is discouraging to us. I will tell you a little
          further; it is actually the faltering, and misgiving, and
          misdealing of unjust persons that prevent the gathering of the
          Lord's poor, and that is God's truth. Were it not for that, the
          Saints would be gathered by scores of thousands. It is the
          wicked, the half-hearted, and what I call hickory Mormons that
          prevent a more extensive gathering of the Saints.
          We have done pretty well this season, and quite a number are
          coming out, and I will tell you how this is operating upon me and
          the people. It is well known that we annually handle a large
          amount of means, and that we turn it over and shift it about
          until it will answer the end for which it was designed.
          Now I can ask the world this one question, were we ever in your
          debt and refused to pay you? And they will all answer, "No." We
          can turn to the Saints in England, France, America, or anywhere
          upon the face of the whole earth; and ask them, "Have you lent us
          money, or means of any kind, and we were not on hand to pay you?"
          And they will answer, "No."
          When brother Erastus Snow arrived, on the 1st of this month, he
          came in the morning and informed me that he had run me in debt
          nearly fifty thousand dollars; he said, "President Young"s name
          is as good as the bank."
          My name has been used without my consent, or without my knowing
          anything about it, and our agents have run us in debt almost
          fifty thousand dollars to strangers, merchants, cattle dealers,
          and our brethren who are coming here.
          I will tell you a little about the brethren, to show you the
          amount of confidence there is.
          There are men who have lately arrived in town who have a draft on
          me, and who have hunted me up for the cash before they could find
          time to shave their beards, or wash themselves, saying, "I have a
          draft on you at ten days', fifty days', or six months' sight," as
          the case may be, with, "Please pay so and so. Brother Young,
          cannot you let me have the money immediately, for I do not know
          how I can live without it, or get along with my business at all?"
          This is the kind of confidence some men have in me. I wanted to
          name this. Why? Because I am hunted; I am like one that is their
          prey, ready to be devoured. I wish to give you one text to preach
          upon, "From this time henceforth do not fret thy gizzard." I will
          pay you when I can, and not before. Now I hope you will
          apostatize, if you would rather do it.
          It is the poor who have got your money, and if you have any
          complaints to make, make them against the Almighty for having so
          many poor. I do not owe you anything. You have my name attached
          to the paper to help the poor; whether they are the Lord's poor,
          the devil's poor, or poor devils, is not for me now to judge. I
          tell the brethren that they may understand here to-day what kind
          of sacred confidence some of them have in the leader of this
          people, though I am happy to say that such cases are few. I would
          be ashamed to join a people, organized as we are, and be afraid
          to trust their leader.
          It has just come into my mind how the brethren can be relieved of
          their present dilemma, viz., every soul of you come forward and
          make a donation of those drafts to the P. E. Fund. That will
          relieve you of the debt at once, and you can then sit down and
          enjoy yourselves, and lie down and sleep contentedly. This is
          pleading for the poor again, and I am bound to do that.
          I will tell you what I have done, for I know that many of the
          brethren think that I am building myself up. I am, but let me
          tell you that if I do not build up the kingdom of God on earth I
          never expect to be built up; and I would not give the ashes of a
          rye straw for any man in this kingdom, or for all his substance,
          who does not build it up, and gather means for that purpose. It
          is true I gather a great deal of substance around me; I am
          obliged to do it, I cannot shun it. I must feed the poor, I must
          clothe them and take care of them; I must see that they have
          houses; and when they get so as to deserve them they must have a
          team, a watch, a farm, &c., and must increase; but they must work
          and pay for it all.
          You know I preached you a short charity sermon last Sunday. I am
          not now preaching for the poor in England, but for Utah poor; and
          in Utah no man is deserving, or woman either, of fifty or even
          twenty-five cents' worth of flour, of a piece of meat, a garment,
          or the possession of any property without they pay for it with
          their labor, if they are able. That is for Utah, no for England,
          France, Ireland, &c. It is plain to you that circumstances
          actually compel me to do as I do. Do I feed my hundreds? Yes, I
          have fed them ever since I have been in these valleys, ever since
          I could raise the grain to do it, which I have always done until
          this year, and have had a great deal to spare besides.
          I collect means around me, the poor must have it, and I make them
          work and pay for it; that makes me wealthy, and I cannot help it.
          I have property for sale, and say, if any man in England, or
          anywhere else, will expand his heart and loosen his purse strings
          to buy sixty-two thousand dollars' worth of my individual
          property, I have it for sale to help the poor. I do not want it
          destroyed, or to go into the hands of a mob, but I want it to go
          to the building up of the kingdom of God. I would prefer to let
          it go into the hands of the Saints, and use it to pay off those
          who have drafts against me. Here is brother Duel, he has a good
          house, and there are many others, go and buy their property, and
          they will take your drafts and hand them to me. [Here many voices
          were heard in a low tone, saying, "Yes, take my property."] Why
          do I hear such responses on every side? Because they know me and
          understand "Mormonism" as they ought. Go and throw out your
          drafts, it is better for you to do this than to have the money
          and let it go to destruction, and perhaps you with it. How many
          scores have come into this kingdom, who have mourned themselves
          to death because Joseph had five dollars of them? And yet they
          would let their money go into the hands of the enemies of Christ,
          and sit down calmly, and say, "Though I have lost that money, I
          am in the kingdom of God yet." If it is absolutely necessary, and
          circumstances cannot be controlled to keep the money from going
          into the hands of our enemies, we will not whine about it, but
          let it go, and then get more.
          All cash means that are in the hands of this people should be
          kept there for the benefit and convenience of the kingdom of God.
          What for? To roll on the work of the last days, gather the
          Saints, preach the Gospel, build up cities and temples, send the
          Gospel to the uttermost parts of the earth, and revolutionize the
          whole world.
          You who have got those drafts, walk up like men of God and see
          where you can purchase property, instead of taking the money to
          put in the hands of some poor apostate, who wants to go to
          Dare any of you come and buy property? I can furnish as much as
          you can buy. My house on the hill yonder, I have advertised it
          for sale, and also my lands and barn. "What do you ask for it?"
          Sixteen thousand dollars; it is worth that and a great deal more,
          for it actually cost more. Can any of you buy it? Walk up and buy
          my beautiful situation on the hill, and I will put the proceeds
          into the Perpetual Emigrating Fund, if you will pay me the money,
          and gather the Saints, the Lord's poor, and the devil's poor, and
          the poor devils, and when we have got them here we will make
          Saints of them, if we can, and if we cannot, we will cast them
          out of the kingdom.
          If the brethren all felt as some do, the Perpetual Fund means
          would increase rapidly, but what do they do? It was reported to
          you here last Conference, that there were then fifty-six thousand
          dollars owing to the P. E. Fund, by brethren in this Territory;
          some of the debtors have run away, but the most of them are here.
          Can these men pay anything? No, they are poor and distressed;
          they say, "If we let our oxen go, how can we live? If we let our
          cows go our families will suffer." How did your families get
          along before you got the cows? Another will say, "I have only one
          span of horses and a wagon; and I cannot pay the debt." You
          promised, before you left England, that you would pay it, and
          pledged your sacred honor, and that is forfeited to the P. E.
          Fund. You say that you cannot pay the debt; but I know you can if
          you have a mind to. Live without a cow, as you used to, pay in
          your houses and farms, and work until you get more. This debt is
          diminished but little since last Conference; I do not suppose we
          have gathered in more than one thousand dollars of it, and this
          season there are about forty-nine thousand dollars more added to
          it. I calculate that will rest upon my shoulders, but they are so
          sloping, as you may observe, that it slips off, and then I kick
          it off at my heels. The money will be forth-coming and all will
          be well, all will be right; I am not discouraged.
          I have a word to say to another portion of the community, some of
          whom may be here to-day. A great many of the brethren are
          indebted to the tithing office; and I have a good deal coming to
          me; and I intend to put you into the screw, for we mean to make
          you pay these debts this season. One man says, "I owe the Church
          the money, it is true, but I believe I shall break and not pay
          it." They want to get their money into the safe and then break.
          If they owed a Gentile they would pay their debts, they would
          work, and toil, and labor, day and night, to pay their enemy; but
          when they owe the Church and kingdom of God they can lie down and
          sleep in peace, though they owe thousands of dollars, and say,
          "O! well, it is no matter whether the debt is paid or not." I
          want to have you understand fully that I intend to put the screws
          upon you, and you who have owed for years, if you do not pay up
          now and help us, we will levy on your property and take every
          farthing you have on the earth. I want to see if I can make some
          of you apostatize; I will if I can, by teaching sound doctrine
          and advocating correct principles; for I am tired of men who are
          eternally gouging their brethren and taking the advantage of
          them, and at the same time pretending to be Saints until they
          gain an advantage over this people, and then they are ready to
          leave. I want you to leave now; I give you this word of caution,
          prepare to pay the debt you owe to the Church. If I had the money
          due to the Church by a few individuals, I could pay every one of
          our individual debts and the Church debt, and have a few scores
          of thousands lying by me to operate upon; and in such
          circumstances I could operate to some advantage, and greatly
          benefit the Church. But it seems that there are many drones in
          the hive, who are determined to tie up the hands of those who
          rule the affairs of this kingdom, and the quicker they are thrown
          out the better.
          I have given you some reasons why things are so slow and tardy in
          their progress with regard to the gathering of the Saints. Let
          the poor Saints strive to induce the rich to have confidence in
          them, by keeping their word and punctually paying those who loan
          them money. I am sorry to say that this is not always the case.
          The poor are filled with idolatry as well as the rich, and covet
          the means of those who have helped them; the rich, also, have the
          same spirit of idolatry, and stick to what they have. Let the
          poor be honest, let the rich be liberal, and lay their plans to
          assist the poor, to build up the kingdom of God, and at the same
          time enrich themselves, for that is the way to build up God's
          kingdom. May the Lord bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, May, 30, 1855
                          Jedediah M. Grant, May, 30, 1855
          A Lecture by President J. M. Grant, Delivered in the Social Hall,
                        Great Salt Lake City, May, 30, 1855.
               I am pleased with the privilege I have in speaking for a
          short time this evening.
          I wish to have your prayers, and by the aid thereof to speak by
          the Spirit of the Lord, for I have found that without that Spirit
          I never could command language sufficient to convey my ideas.
          With all the study that I have exercised, with all the books I
          have read and the experience I have had, I never have been able
          to convey, with any degree of force, the ideas presented to my
          mind, without the Spirit of the Lord. Believing in this fact, I
          have never premeditated what I should say. Some suppose that, to
          treat upon theology, or any other science coming under the
          general term, a person must have a classical education.
          I hope you, as well as myself, have often thought upon the
          science of theology, or upon other branches of science; but
          notwithstanding we may reflect upon them, and think upon them
          till we make our heads ache, yet my experience has proved to me
          that an Elder of Israel cannot impress any subject on the minds
          of the people, unless he has the Holy Spirit.
          I might reason upon this point at some length; for instance, we
          have some among us who are good preachers, and who are considered
          good in language, but yet they are not able to impress their
          ideas upon other minds, unless they have the Spirit of the Lord.
          I find others who are not considered good speakers nor good in
          language, yet when filled with this Spirit they can convey their
          ideas in a clear manner to those whom they address. Therefore I
          reason like this, if a person address you and wishes to make a
          suitable impression upon your mind, he must have the Spirit.
          Latter-day Saints are, and have been highly favored; the channel
          of communication has been opened from heaven to earth in our day,
          and has inspired this people with the gift of the Holy Ghost, and
          by that gift they have proved the things of God. When I read the
          productions of men I am apt to forget them; I go for instance, to
          Elder Hyde's grammar class, and I study, and read, and commit the
          rules of grammar to memory, but unless I keep my mind constantly
          upon that subject, it will fly away from me; it is like the man's
          rabbit, "when he went to put his hand upon it, it was not there."
          On the contrary, there are certain truths brought to my mind by
          the aid of the Spirit of the Lord, that I have never forgotten.
          Truths deposited by the Holy Ghost are treasured up in the mind,
          and do not leave it.
          One trait I have had in my character from my boyhood, and that
          is, not to believe every story told me to be true. I well
          remember that my mother used to instruct and teach me that if I
          was a bad boy, I should have to go to hell, and that the fire
          there was seven times hotter than any fire I could possibly make,
          even if I should make it with beech or maple wood and there I
          must burn for ever and ever. I never believed this story, but I
          presume that my mother did; I could not, therefore I felt no
          trouble about it.
          Still I was particular in my notions of certain ideas. I remember
          reflecting when very young--my brother had killed a quail, and in
          conversing upon the circumstances, he asked my mother if there
          was not a quail heaven, which caused me to reflect much upon the
          idea of a future state of the animal creation. And, when quite
          young, I read the sermons of John Wesley, who believed that the
          animal creation would have an eternal existence as well as man,
          therefore my ideas were strengthened upon this thing; but when I
          came to read the vision given to Joseph Smith upon a future
          state, as contained in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants, I
          believed it, although some in our neighborhood were much troubled
          with the doctrine it contained, but it gave me great joy and
          From the time I began to read books, I have been particular in
          relation to what I would accept for doctrine. I am aware that
          some persons will believe almost anything, and are not particular
          in relation to the doctrine they receive.
          I remember well, when a boy, of hearing brother Brigham speak in
          tongues, and the effect it produced I shall never forget; I could
          feel the spirit, although I did not fully understand the tongue.
          I have heard others speak in tongues, but it had not the same
          effect, and I have marked the different impressions received
          under different individuals.
          When a man teaches doctrine, let him keep on the track, and teach
          what we can realize and understand, for I do dislike to receive
          anything for doctrine and afterwards be under the necessity of
          giving it up because it is erroneous. Hence, if you desire to be
          constantly led in the path of truth, you will have to be led by
          the inspiration of the Lord. If I hear a righteous man teach
          doctrine which I cannot believe nor comprehend, I mark the
          saying, and I find, that in course of time, the Holy Spirit makes
          the principle manifest, and sets the matter right.
          When you have a teacher upon the earth and he gives you
          instruction, is it for you to rise up and say that you will not
          abide by his counsel, that you can instruct as well as he can? If
          a person possesses more intelligence, and has more knowledge than
          his teacher, perhaps they might assume the right to teach those
          who are placed over them. Yet those in this church who have taken
          this course have betrayed their own weakness and folly. But as
          God has given us a teacher, it is his prerogative to teach in
          every sense of the word, and give unto us every lesson that we
          Take the balance of the world from the Saints, and with all their
          learning--with all their vanity--with all their books, science,
          and education--and contrast it with the fountain of knowledge
          that God, angels, and the servants of God possess, and what are
          the world with all their boasted acquirements, when contrasted
          with these things? What do they understand about the principles
          by which man is to be exalted into the presence of God?
          Take the wisest statesmen and philosophers there are in the
          world, and with all the knowledge they may acquire upon
          astronomy, philosophy, or any other branch of science known among
          the children of men, and they will come far short of a perfect
          knowledge of science in all its parts and bearings. If we could
          call up father Abraham, I suppose he could teach us more
          philosophy and astronomy in one day, than those to whom I have
          alluded could teach you in years. Call up Daniel, and he would
          tell us he learned more in one vision, concerning the history of
          the Medes and Persians, and of the Romans, and others, than
          modern historians could learn by reading for years.
          "No man can understand the things of God, but by the Spirit of
          God." Ask a person who has preached for years, if he can remember
          what he said; I know I cannot. I can remember that I had the
          Spirit of God at such a time; I remember that I taught by the
          Holy Ghost at such a time, and the testimony that I bore to the
          people, and I realize the principle, I trusted in the Lord. I
          know no more about shaping my discourses than I did when I first
          commenced to preach, and no more than if I had never preached in
          my life; but I always speak from the impressions of the moment,
          as I receive them. I want to go into a meeting without anything
          premeditated, and speak from the impulse of the moment, for I
          feel well when taking this course. Whether I feel lively and
          energetic, or dull and sleepy, I shall speak accordingly.
          I have passed through various scenes up and down in the world,
          and never failed to accomplish anything that has been given me to
          do. I have in my life, crossed some of the most dangerous water
          courses--some which no other person would attempt to cross; not
          that I was any more daring than they were, naturally, but by
          acting in accordance with the impression that I then received,
          and from those impressions I knew I could cross. And on different
          occasions, when I have carried out those impressions, it has come
          out just right; and when I have not done so, it has been just the
          In the year 1834, when Zion's camp was moving from Kirtland to
          Missouri, one day I left the camp and went out to hunt in the
          woods of Ohio, and strayed away from the camp some 10 or 11
          miles. The camp kept moving on all the time, and I entirely lost
          the track, and having no compass, I knew not towards what point I
          should travel. I kept travelling on till the after part of the
          day; I then concluded I would pray, but I could not get any
          impression where the camp was. However, I soon after received an
          impression from the Spirit, the same Spirit we had in Kirtland,
          and the same Spirit we enjoy in this place; and immediately after
          receiving the impression, I looked before me, and there was the
          camp moving on in regular order. I could see it just as clear as
          I did in the morning; there were the people, the wagons and
          horses, all in their places as I left them in the fore part of
          the day, and I supposed they were not more than 80 rods off. But
          after turning away for a moment, I again looked in the same
          direction, but all was gone. Still the Spirit told me to travel
          on in the same direction I had seen the camp; I did so, and after
          travelling some 8 o 10 miles, came up with them, and when they
          first came in sight, they looked just as I saw them in the
          Again, whenever I have had anything that was great or important
          to accomplish, I have been impressed with my own weakness and
          inability to perform the task imposed upon me, and that of myself
          I was as nothing, only as I trusted in God, and under these
          circumstances I was certain to speak by the power and influence
          of the Holy Ghost. When I have trusted in books, or in my own
          acquirements that I had gleaned from reading the productions of
          different authors, (for I used to be fond of reading the works of
          Brown, Abercrombie, Locke, Watts, and other metaphysical
          writers,) I was sure to be foiled in my attempt, for all would
          leave me. But whenever I have trusted in the Lord, and relied
          upon Him for strength, it has come out right.
          I want the Saints of God, when they come to school, to be filled
          with the Holy Spirit; I want the Saints to pray that those who
          speak may do it by the power of the Holy Ghost, and by this
          course you will learn and understand the principle of eternal
          life and happiness, and will receive intelligence from the
          fountain of all knowledge, which will exalt you in the presence
          of God. You may read all the books in the universe, and study all
          you can upon the science of astronomy, chemistry, and theology,
          and make those sciences interwoven with your very nature, till
          they are like a straight-jacket upon you, and you may be wrapped
          up in them and bound hand and foot, and after all they will not
          let you into the fountain of all knowledge; but by taking such a
          course, you will have to become slaves to the learning that you
          have acquired. But I want the Saints to use their learning in the
          same manner as a boy uses the top, which is in perfect subjection
          to him; upon the same principle let the Saints use their
          learning, and when they speak, let it be by the power of God. It
          is not that I discard learning, but let it be used properly.
          There is a fountain of intelligence, and the channel thereto is
          open, thank God for it, and the light of heaven bursts forth
          through this channel.
          I will now come right down to your own houses, and among your own
          families. When you call upon the Lord, night and morning, and do
          those things which are right in the sight of God, you feel well,
          don't you? But if you act in a different manner, and neglect to
          pray, and forget to attend to those duties devolving upon a Saint
          of God, you feel barren in the things of God. Can you go and
          read, and study any science, and feel that you have the same
          light beaming upon your understanding, that a person has who is
          filled with the Spirit of God, and that light which animates a
          heavenly being? 
          Why was it that Joseph could take the wisest Elder that ever
          travelled and preached, and, as it were, circumscribe his very
          thoughts? Simply because he had the Holy Ghost. Why can our
          President do the same? is it because he has read books for years?
          No. But he has sought his God, and the Holy Ghost is in him and
          he is enabled to search the deep things of God. Then, I say, that
          man knows the most who enjoys the greatest portion of the Holy
          Spirit. An individual who lacks this principle may be filled with
          the learning of the world, but can he rise up ant tell it, unless
          he has the Holy Spirit? I answer, no. To impress the knowledge
          that he possesses upon the minds of others, he must have the Holy
          Ghost. I wish to enquire whether the channel is open between you
          and the heavens, and do you draw daily from that source? If so,
          then you are in the narrow path, and rejoicing in the truth. I
          mention this that you may come to the school prepared to receive
          the impression that may be given. I do not wish you to come here
          as though you were coming to Fun Hall, (you know this is
          sometimes called Fun Hall), but when you come, have your minds
          prepared to be instructed in doctrine, and in the love of God,
          and pray that you may receive a proper impression upon what may
          be advanced; for you must receive item after item, principle
          after principle, here a little and there a little, until you get
          a fountain of wisdom. I want you to follow the impression that
          would lead you to serve God, and the still small voice of God
          will direct you in all your ways, and you will be wrapped up and
          live in revelation, and it will be your food by day and by night,
          and it will cause the mind to expand and the heart to leap with
          joy. I admit that there are certain Saints who consider certain
          items as small affairs, but the least thing, however small it may
          appear to some, in its results may be great. If we as Saints of
          God do right, no difference about who calls us simple. I tell
          you, that if you have the Holy Ghost you can understand, and you
          can be impressed with truth, and that truth will make you free,
          and you will not forget those things which you receive under the
          impressions of the Holy Spirit.
            A great many people feast upon imagination instead of feasting
          upon that which is tangible, and they will allow their minds to
          be led away by fancy, and will make out how great they will be at
          some future time, and how good they intend to be and how much of
          the Holy Ghost they expect to receive; but the idea is, what do
          you enjoy at the present time, and what are the blessings you
          enjoy at this present moment, right now? Am I doing right to-day?
          Is the Holy Ghost in me now? Is God's blessing with me now--(not
          at some other time)? If so, then all is well.
          I want the Saints to be impressed with the motto of being happy
          all the time; if you cannot be happy today, how can you be happy
          to-morrow? I speak this from what I have learned myself; though
          it has given me much of trouble, and a great amount of
          perseverance, to be happy under all circumstances. I have learned
          not to fret myself. It has taken me a great while to arrive at
          this point, but I have obtained it in a measure, and perhaps many
          of you have obtained the same thing, but I doubt whether a great
          many have learned the secret of happiness.
          In order to understand the principle of happiness you must not be
          ever complaining, but learn not to fret yourselves. If things do
          not go right, let them go as they will, if they go rough, let it
          be so; if all hell boils over, let it boil. I thank the Lord for
          the bitter as well as for the sweet; I like to grapple with the
          opposite: I like to work and have something to oppose. I used to
          dread those things, but now I like to grapple with opposition,
          and there is plenty of it on the right hand and on the left. When
          trouble gets in among you, shake it off, or bid it stand out of
          the way. If the devil should come and say, "Brother Brigham is
          not doing his duty, or is not doing right," kick him right out of
          your way; bid him depart, do not allow him to have place in your
          habitation, but learn to be happy.
          I remember a noted deist who said that it was a poor religion
          that would not make a person happy here in this life: he would
          not give a fig for such a religion; and I would say the same;
          give me a religion that will make me happy here, and that will
          make me happy hereafter. If you have the blues, or the greens,
          shake them off, and learn to be happy, and to be thankful. If you
          have nothing to eat but johnny cake, be thankful for that, and if
          you have not johnny cake, but have a roasted potatoe and
          buttermilk, why, be thankful; or if you have a leg of a chicken,
          or any other kind of food, learn to be thankful, and if you have
          only one dollar in your pocket, learn to be as happy under these
          circumstances as if you had ten dollars. 
          One time in Nauvoo, some English brethren did not like to eat
          corn bread, and one of them says to another, just before
          partaking of some, "Are you going to ask a blessing? I am not
          going to thank God for nothing else but corn bread, potatoes, and
          salt." Brethren, those feelings should not be, we ought to be
          happy and shake off the blues, no difference what we may be
          called to pass through, but let us have the light of the Lord,
          the channel of inspiration open, that the light of truth may
          break in upon our understandings, that we may be rich in faith
          and in good works.
          I used once to be troubled with dyspepsia, and had frequently to
          call upon the Elders to administer, and on one occasion, brother
          Joseph Smith says to me, "Brother Grant, if I could always be
          with you, I could cure you." How is it that brother Brigham is
          able to comfort and soothe those who are depressed in spirit, and
          always make those with whom he associates so happy? I will tell
          you how he makes us feel so happy. He is happy himself, and the
          man who is happy himself can make others feel so, for the light
          of God is in him and others feel the influence, and feel happy in
          his society. I want the Saints to live in a way that they can
          feel happy all the time, and then we shall enjoy the Holy Spirit;
          then we shall meet in heaven to part and meet again; and when we
          get through our work assigned us, then we may assist, if not to
          make a world as large as this, in organizing some little lump of
          May God bless, save and receive you into his kingdom, is the
          prayer and desire of my heart, for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Orson
          Pratt, May 20, 1855
                              Orson Pratt, May 20, 1855
                           OF CHRIST--THE WORD OF WISDOM.
           A Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                         Great Salt Lake City, May 20, 1855.
          I have been much interested in the remarks that have been made by
          brother Jackman, for they have been according to my feelings,
          they were right to the point, and many useful ideas have been
          thrown out before us, and his words have been full of meaning.
          Although he has considered himself bashful before the people, yet
          the Lord has put into his heart those things that are calculated
          to interest the Saints.
          We see, from what has been portrayed before us, the trials and
          difficulties that we, some of us, have had to endure in this
          Church; we also see, from what he has explained, the patience of
          the people in passing through those difficulties; no murmuring,
          no complaining, no fault-finding, but all taking hold with one
          heart and one mind to do the will of God, under the most
          straightened circumstances.
          We can contrast this feeling with what we see manifested by some
          of our new emigrants; some of them come in here feeling
          dissatisfied, having become so in crossing the plains; they will
          differ with each other, lose the good spirit, and allow
          themselves to be controlled by an evil influence; I say we can
          see, from the discourse of brother Jackman, a great contrast
          between those that first came here, and those that now come. Now
          the question might arise in the minds of some, "Were the pioneers
          who came here so much better than those persons that now come?" I
          think not. "Then why was there no murmuring, nor fault-finding,
          nor apostacy?" The reason is obvious; those who first came here
          had more experience in such matters than the new emigrants have,
          who come here almost without experience in those things which
          they naturally come in contact with when crossing the plains.
          In fact there are very few in the world that would do any better
          than the "Mormon" pioneers did the first year they came here. It
          requires experience to enable people patiently to pass through
          the scenes of trial that were endured by the pioneers, and those
          who first came into these valleys. Take our late emigration that
          have crossed over the plains, and let them be driven a few times
          from their comfortable habitations, and let them wander for
          months in the cold winter, and then send them off on an
          expedition, such as the pioneers took to this country, and you
          would see them quite a different people: you would see them
          altered and improved by the course of experience they had passed
          through; they would be benefitted by certain kinds of experience
          which others have passed through before them; and, if attentive,
          they would add many important items to their former stock of
          wisdom and knowledge.
          Consequently, it requires experience, not only for the old
          members, but for the new; and should the new members be permitted
          to come from the old countries, and meet with no poverty, no
          affliction, it would not be known whether those persons would
          endure such trials; and hence the necessity of such trials to
          give people experience.
          It is true, they have had some things to pass through in the old
          country of a trying nature, but they have not had a series of
          different trials to encounter; therefore, there would be no
          telling whether they would stand or not, if called to pass
          through similar scenes of trials to those passed through by the
          earlier settlers of this Territory.
          Then, it is not surprising to me that the Lord takes certain
          measures to bring those persons into difficult circumstances; in
          fact, we have the Lord's own declaration for it, that He will try
          this people, not in some things, but in all things, to see if
          they will abide in the covenant, and He says, "If they will not,
          then they will not abide in me."
          Here, then, we perceive that each will have his share of trials,
          either in the beginning or in the advanced state of the Church.
          We do not know what they will be, only so far as God has revealed
          in His word. He has told us that we should be visited with famine
          and sword, with pestilence and distress; all these are predicted,
          and laid before this people in the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants. The Lord says, unless His servants should hearken to
          the words and counsels that He gives unto them, famine, trouble,
          and distress would overtake them. Now what benefit or what glory
          is there to an individual who is placed in circumstances that he
          cannot help but do right? For instance, suppose there were no
          intoxicating drinks in the world, what glory and credit would it
          be to an individual to say that he had kept himself from those
          things? If his father and his forefathers to the third or fourth
          generation of them, had died from drunkenness, he would have
          nothing to boast of; for he could not be a drunkard; therefore, I
          say, if this temptation was set before us as the forbidden tree
          was before mother Eve, and we withstood the temptation, then
          there would be some merit in it, far more than there is for a
          person to keep himself sober, because he is obliged to do so. So
          we may take other things in the same light.
          Why did the Lord suffer the Hittites, and Perizzites, and
          Hivites, and Jebusites, and various others, to live among Israel?
          He had two purposes in view; one was to scourge Israel when they
          went astray from His commandments; and the other was to see
          whether they would overcome or not; He placed them where they
          would have temptations to test their fidelity; then, if directly
          in the face of the Law of God, they would falter or yield, and
          give way to the customs and vices of the heathen, they were not
          worthy of the glory of God, nor of being called His people.
          But if the heathen had all been swept away, and those temptations
          had not been presented, where would have been the merit? It would
          have been very small indeed.
          A commandment was given, forbidding the children of Israel to
          marry with the heathen; it was commanded that the sons of Israel
          should not take wives from among the heathen, neither should they
          give their daughters to the heathen.
          Now there was temptation in those days, set before the children
          of Israel, and sometimes they would break through, and go beyond
          the bounds, like old Solomon, who transgressed, after God had
          appeared to him three times, and had given him many choice
          favors, and manifested Himself to him in dreams, and also when he
          spread forth his hands to pray God to bless the temple which he
          had built, then the Lord manifested Himself in the presence of
          all Israel, to His servant. 
          He was lifted up in the midst of Israel, and a kingdom and
          government were given to him, far surpassing all the kingdoms and
          governments upon the earth, and yet, after all these things, and
          after the Lord had given him many wives, he took that which was
          forbidden; he took the daughters of the heathen nations; and he,
          being their head and their king, set this wicked--this evil
          example before all Israel, so that if they had followed his
          foolish and wicked ways, they would have been destroyed, but from
          the account we have, he was overcome by the temptations laid
          before him, and consequently the wives that he had taken led him
          away, so much so, that in his old age, he, in order to please
          those wives whom he had taken from among the Gentiles, bowed down
          to their gods. Here then were two evils, first, in taking heathen
          wives, and the next, in tampering with, and bowing down to their
          gods; and the Lord will judge him for all those things, just as
          He will us--according to the works we perform while in this state
          of probation.
          If Solomon, in all his glory, had been contented with all those
          blessings given him and had not yielded to the temptations laid
          to ensnare him, he would have increased in his glory and in his
          dominions; his glory would have increased in this world and in
          the future; but the Lord desired to try him.
          This shows us that, though a man may be set upon a throne and be
          exalted high among men, yet he has his temptations, and blessed
          is he if he endures them and is faithful to his trust; and if he
          be in distress, bears it all with patience, for he will always
          have his trials, and no person will escape, all men must be tried
          and proven.
          These are reflections that occurred to my mind while brother
          Jackman addressed us, showing the contrast between those who
          first came here, and those who now come. I was led to enquire,
          why there was such a vast difference; and the thought occurred to
          me that it was because of experience, for those who have been
          here from the first, have been pretty well buffeted, and before
          they came here they had learned how to submit, when the Lord saw
          proper to put upon them a chastisement.
          Should all this people here in Utah be called to pass through
          such scenes as some of us have been called upon to encounter, I
          believe there would be many who would say, "Let us endure these
          things with all submission and patience before God."
          In order to do this, it is necessary for us, in our prosperity,
          to remember the Lord our God, for if men and women will not
          remember the Lord, when the heavens smile upon them, and when
          health is in their habitations--if they will not acknowledge the
          hand of God then, and be thankful for the blessings that they
          receive, you may be sure that they will not be so well prepared
          to endure trials, and to pass through adversities, as those who
          have, in the days of their prosperity, humbled themselves before
          the Lord, and acknowledged His hand in all things.
          There are individuals in this Territory, of a careless
          disposition, and you may mark them, and those that have waxed
          fat, and their hearts are upon the things of this world, that
          when tribulations come, they will be the ones to quake and fear,
          while those who have taken a different course will be able to
          I heard brother Joseph, when speaking of those that were sick in
          Nauvoo, make remarks similar to those that I have now made. He
          said, that those who would not, when in good health, call upon
          the Lord, and acknowledge His hand in all things, and remember
          him, would not have faith when it was needed--he said that those
          individuals would have but very little faith in the days of their
          calamities and affliction.
          Then seek to get faith and spirit sufficient to assist us in the
          days of our afflictions, that we may be prepared for all the
          vicissitudes of life. We ought to know that we are well off at
          the present, but all do not realize this fact.
          How often I have thought of the remark made by the Prophet;
          nothing can be more true than that remark; it carries its own
          evidence with it, that those individuals who have wealth and
          riches in abundance, but do not remember the Lord, when troubles
          come, they will be in the greatest distress, generally speaking.
          I do not know what the Lord will hereafter do with this people; I
          have not myself a sufficiency of the spirit of prophecy to
          understand all the events of the future; and I doubt very much,
          whether there is an individual in this Church that does know; but
          we do know, as far as the things of the future are revealed; and
          we may know many things by dreams and visions, but when it comes
          to principles, and to what the Lord will do with this people, I
          doubt very much whether there is an individual in the world, that
          knows the changes and variety of scenes through which this people
          will be called to pass.
          There are, in many revelations, not only in modern but in ancient
          prophecy, predictions touching the scenes of the last days, and
          the trials of the Saints; and we ought to be prepared for
          whatever is to come, troubles, distress, famine, war, or anything
          The Lord has said that great prosperity awaits us, far beyond
          what we now have, but I doubt very much whether this prosperity
          will come before we have passed through some further
          There are revelations in relation to the nations of the earth and
          this people, that seem to indicate that we will have to pass
          through some things that we never have had to encounter, and it
          seems to me that we will have to stand forth and defend ourselves
          against our enemies. And we have got to be tried as Israel was,
          and to see whether our sons will marry Gentiles, or our daughters
          Gentile husbands.
          Now if there were no Gentiles among us, we could not see whether
          there was any integrity among the people. Do you suppose that
          this people will be kept away from the Gentiles? No verily, the
          Lord does not intend that we should dwell separate from the world
          altogether. From this time forth, it is our duty to warn our sons
          and daughters, day by day, and night by night, and week by week,
          as has been told us from this stand to warn our sons and
          daughters, as God did our first parents, concerning the forbidden
          fruit. When He set the forbidden fruit before them, He said, "If
          you eat, it will make you mortal, whereas you are now immortal,
          but you may choose for yourselves."
          Now how do we know, but when the gates of Zion shall be open to
          the nations, that the Gentiles will come flocking in, like a
          flowing stream? A flowing stream is one that runs continually;
          and the Gentiles will, in that day, come to us as a flowing
          stream, and we shall have to set our gates open continually, they
          will come as clouds and as doves in large flocks. Do you suppose
          that the Gentiles are going to be ignorant of what is taking
          place? "Now this will not be the case, they will perfectly
          understand what is taking place. The people will see that the
          hand of God is over this people; they will see that He is in our
          midst, and that He is our watchtower, that He is our shield and
          our defence, and therefore, they will say, "Let us go up and put
          our riches in Zion, for there is no safety in our own nations."
          Those nations are trembling and tottering and will eventually
          crumble to ruin, and those men of wealth will come here, not to
          be baptized, but many of them will come that have never heard the
          servants of God; but they will hear that peace and health dwell
          among us, and that our officers are all peace officers, and our
          tax-gatherers men of righteousness.
          They will come, not to be baptized, but they will come with their
          old traditions and customs, and they will flee to Zion with their
          riches, but they will come in favor of their old customs, and of
          their old Gentile notions of religion; and if God is merciful
          unto them, so as to cause them to leave their native land, that
          we may take them up, and teach them, and nourish them, and bring
          them up to the standard of truth, all will be right; but if they
          neglect to observe and obey the instructions given, and to follow
          the good examples set before them, so much the greater their
          curse and condemnation.
          If our sons and daughters will mary among them, they are much
          worse than the Gentiles are; for we have been instructed, and
          ought to know better.
          But notwithstanding all that I have said, there may be a time to
          come, I do not know how long it will be, but the time will come
          when righteousness will be laid to the line and justice to the
          There will be a certain degree of freedom used with those persons
          who may come unto Zion, but not so far as to partake of their
          deeds; but on the contrary, you are strictly prohibited from
          joining in their evil practices.
          But if the Saints act wisely they may set an example before them
          that will do them good, and if there is any good or righteousness
          in them, an upright, holy example will bring it out. All this
          will take place, and there are many here that will live to see
          those things, and I rejoice that there is but a comparatively
          little time for those things to be accomplished.
          I look at matters perhaps a little different from some that get
          away off this way and then the other, and when they get
          disappointed will apostatize.
          In order to explain my feelings I will bring up one little
          example; for instance, it was expected that when the Saints
          gathered to Jackson County, there would be a perfect paradise,
          and that there would be an end to trouble and to opposition. And
          when the Saints were driven out from Jackson County, almost all
          in the Church expected that they would speedily be restored; and
          a person was considered almost an apostate that would say, they
          would not come back in five years, or ten at the furthest; but
          the prevailing opinion seemed to be that it would take place
          When Zion's Camp went up, and found the Saints all scattered
          abroad, what did we hear? Why, all in camp were on the tiptoe to
          have Zion redeemed immediately; perhaps some would stretch their
          faith and put it off for five years; but those were considered
          weak in the faith. This was their extreme enthusiasm.
          I was appointed to visit all the Saints in Clay County, to
          strengthen them, and I proved to them from the Book of Doctrine
          and Covenants that it would be very many years before Zion should
          be redeemed; and some would believe it, and some others would
          think that brother Pratt was rather weak in the faith; but I
          endeavored to show them that such and such things had got to be
          fulfilled before the redemption of Zion; and time has proved the
          truth of what I advanced.
          Now let us see if they have not got to the other extreme;
          twenty-two years have passed since that time, and if we look
          around now, is it not the other way, the very opposite? The
          people think of almost everything else but the redemption of
          Zion, and speak to individuals about it, and they put it off a
          great distance ahead. But I do not feel to go to this extreme. I
          will give you my opinion; so far as the revelations go, in
          speaking of this subject, I think that this event is nearer than
          this people are aware of.
          Again, take the subject of the coming of Christ, and as far back
          as 1821, I remember that I came on from New York to Kirtland,
          Ohio, and I found many Saints thinking that Christ would come
          immediately. Though I had but little experience, yet I had
          applied myself to the written revelations, for they were not then
          printed, but I frequently got the privilege of reading them, and
          copying some of them, and therefore, I had an opportunity of
          judging more correctly, perhaps, than those who had not the same
          No doubt they felt exceedingly anxious to have him come, as we
          all do, and this anxiety overcame them, and hence they were
          mistaken. I have no doubt that there are others in the Church
          that think it is a far off event, and event that will probably
          take place in the days of their youngest children; but from what
          is written, I look upon it as an event that is much nearer than
          is generally supposed.
          It is true, there is a great work to be performed, but the Lord
          has a great many to perform it. If He had them all concentrated
          in one vast body from England, Scotland, the nations of Europe,
          and the Islands of the sea, he could soon accomplish the work,
          notwithstanding its vastness.
          A great work has to be brought about; how many years, or scores
          of years, it will be, I know not, but from the scenes we behold
          among the people, the breaking up of the nations, and the signs
          of the times, and the present aspects of the European war, and
          from the shutting up and closing up of the proclamation of the
          Gospel in many lands, the coming of Christ seems to be near at
          hand, yet Zion must be redeemed before that day; the temple must
          be built upon the consecrated spot, the cloud and glory of the
          Lord rest upon it, and the Lamanites, many of them, brought in,
          and they must build up the NEW JERUSALEM! It is true, so says the
          Book of Mormon, that inasmuch as the Gentiles receive the Gospel,
          they shall assist my people the remnant of Jacob, saith the Lord,
          to build the New Jerusalem. And when they have got it built, then
          we are told that they shall assist my people who are of Jacob to
          be gathered in unto the New Jerusalem.
          Only a few thousands or hundreds of thousands, then, are to be
          engaged in this work, and then, after it is done, we are to
          assist the Lamanites to gather in; and then shall the powers of
          heaven be in your midst; and then is the coming of Christ.
          It will not be before the Lamanites come in, nor before the
          temple is constructed in Jackson County; but there is a great
          people to do the work.
          I look upon these events as something that will take place sooner
          than many expect, and it will find many putting it away at a
          distance. This is evident, from the fact, that he will find them
          eating and drinking with the drunkard, and marrying, and giving
          in marriage, to the very hour of his coming.
          This shows the state of the world as it is to be at his coming,
          and if they are to perceive one event after another, why do they
          indulge themselves in these things? It shows that they do not
          perceive that it is so near.
          It will not be those who have oil in their lamps, for they are
          ready, and when the sound goes forth, the oil is there; but it
          will be the others; their lamps will have gone out, and they will
          have no light; and hence he comes, and men are not aware of it;
          he enters in and the door is shut, and five out of the ten
          virgins that have actually gathered, as it appears, are numbered
          among hypocrites and unbelievers. 
          How often do I think of this, and the condition of the Saints?
          Will the Saints be ready? With all the evidence and testimony
          that they have portrayed before them from Sabbath to Sabbath, is
          it not strange that so many will be so unprepared for that
          terrible day of the Lord? It will be a pleasing day to the
          righteous, but terrible to the wicked.
          This ought to brace us up, it ought to keep up our spirits, and
          cause us to prepare for that time. If I should not do this, I
          neglect my duty. Should I do wrong because some person in the
          Priesthood, high in authority, does wrong? No, it should have no
          influence whatever over me.
          We should have the Spirit of light that lighteth every man that
          cometh into the world, and especially those that obey the truth.
          And if we will yield to this influence we will not be led away
          from the right path; we are not to give way, no, not even to
          angels who may pretend to come from heaven.
          The spirit upon us should enable us to do that which is right,
          and that which is our duty. For instance, take the Word of
          Wisdom, which is given for our benefit and temporal salvation. It
          is true, disobedience to that is not so gross a sin as some
          others; but still, it is given for our temporal salvation, and
          should be observed. Now, it would require the servants of God to
          preach it every two weeks, or at least every month, to persuade
          this people to hearken to it; and yet they know it is the word of
          the Lord. If I were to call a vote, I presume that there would
          not be one that has come to the years of understanding but what
          would say it is the word of the Lord.
          They go away, after hearing a most glorious discourse upon this
          and other revelations, and perhaps they will keep the Word of
          Wisdom two or three days; but it makes their head ache, and them
          they take a little tea, and it does them good for the moment, and
          they think the Lord don't know what they need as well as they do.
          I do not say that you do say this, but your actions bespeak this.
          But it is such a trial! It must be a terrible trial, which the
          Lord said the weakest of all that are or can be called Saints
          could obey. A thing like tea to have influence over us, so that
          we can only obey the Word of Wisdom two days, and them break it,
          until we hear another discourse, and thus breaking our covenants,
          it shows the folly and weakness of man. It shows how the
          influence of one man prevails over another.
          Why cannot you be independent beings, and say, "I will do this,
          and that, and the other, let my neighbor do as he may; let my
          neighbor do as he will, but as for me and my house, we will serve
          the Lord?" This is what ought to be.
          In making these remarks I take them to myself, although I have,
          as an individual, been very strict in relation to the Word of
          Wisdom since I have been in the Valley, and years before. Do not
          I like the good old tea? Yes I do, and when it is sweetened up,
          and a little cream turned in, it is very pleasant, as no doubt
          also was the forbidden fruit; but it is for me to use my
          endeavors to have it observed, by setting a good example, that I
          may have influence over my neighbor and over my family; and I do
          use that influence as far as in consistent, but it is difficult
          to persuade persons from their old habits.
          I wonder what those persons would do, if called to be martyred
          for their religion, who cannot do without violating the Word of
          Wisdom! I am aware that it is not by constraint, and a man should
          not constrain his family to obey it, but every man will have to
          give an account of his doings, and abide the consequence,
          whatever it may be, if it be the destroying angel going through
          the land to slay the disobedient.
          A man may keep the Word of Wisdom so far as tea, coffee, and
          tobacco are concerned, and still come very short. If he wishes
          and intends to be right, he must obey this, together with all the
          commandments and Words of Wisdom. We must regulate our thoughts,
          our comings in, our goings out, and all our doings and our minds
          by the Spirit of the Lord, and by the counsels of His servants.
          Can the destroyer have influence over such a man?
          Let such a man stand up and say, "Lord, I have done as you told
          me, I have kept your words." Could such a man be destroyed before
          he had accomplished his work on the earth? I question it. Well,
          we shall undoubtedly see a time when we shall need such
          confidence as this.
          May the Lord bless us all for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, April 18, 1852
                          Heber C. Kimball, April 18, 1852
                             EXHORTATION TO FAITHFULNESS.
             An Address by President Heber C. Kimball, Delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, April 18, 1852.
          I have heard hundreds and perhaps thousands of people make the
          observation, that, before they would take the interest and bear
          what brother Young and others do, they would see the people go to
          the devil. We never have felt so, and I should not wish those who
          have had such feelings to rule me. I am satisfied of one thing,
          we have all got to learn to be mild and forbearing, and to do
          unto others as we would wish others to do unto us. That is a
          lesson we all have to learn, and the quicker we bring our minds
          to it the better it will be for us. If you look to the First
          Presidency to lead you, assisted by the Twelve and other leading
          members of this Church, you of course consider them to be good
          men, and we in turn consider that you ought to be good men.
          I think you ought to be good men and good women, good children,
          good fathers and mothers, and good brethren and sisters. Why?
          Because you know what is right and what is wrong. There is not a
          little child before me here to-day, that has arrived to years of
          accountability, but knows what is right to a certain degree. Then
          why do you not all act upon the knowledge that you have, and
          bring your feelings and your passions into subjection, and be
          like the clay in the hands of the potter? When you do right you
          feel well, you feel satisfied, and as though you had a conscience
          void of offence before God and man, and before one another.
          The instructions given to day by President Young were good and
          wholesome; did they not sound delicious upon your ears? Yes, you
          will all say, we know they were good. Well, then, if you know it
          is good, cleave to it, listen to it, and abide that counsel, for
          if you do you will prosper and be blessed, and, as he said, you
          never will be destroyed, and I know it.
          Jesus says, "If you are not one, you are not mine." We must learn
          to be one, listen to one counsel, and subject ourselves to the
          will of our God. Some men, in their course, remind me of a man's
          trying to reach the top of a ladder, without being satisfied to
          commence at the first round, whereas, if they would commence at
          the first round, and go step by step, they would soon arrive at
          the upper rounds.
          Again, we are like to a chain, or should be, one link being
          connected to the other. Then what is the use of any one's trying
          to leave his position? for by so doing he would break the
          connection. Act in your places and in your callings, and by so
          doing the Lord will lead you through into the celestial world, by
          the assistance of His servants, for as to the Lord our God's
          coming here in person and leading us into the celestial world, He
          never will do it, but He will authorize His servants to do it.
          When Jesus lived on the earth, he ordained and organized a Quorum
          of Twelve Apostles, and said to them, "I have laid the
          foundation, and you must build the house." Joseph Smith did the
          same; he made choice of Twelve Apostles, and ordained them, and
          said, "I have laid the foundation, and you may build upon it, you
          may rear the house;" and these very persons are the ones who will
          lead you through into the celestial world, and they will be at
          your head all the time. It will be a very good thing if you take
          care of these men and nourish and cherish them, that when you get
          into difficulty, into snarly hard knots that you do not know how
          to untie, they may be on hand to render you assistance. Supposing
          you were the leaders of this people, and they get into a tangle
          and snarl, like a skein of thread, I tell you there would be
          snapping, which would only tend to render the difficulty still
          worse. Reflect upon these things for a moment, and listen to them
          upon natural principles, for I am only speaking of things as they
          naturally exist. We are not sufficiently patient; I am not so
          patient as I wish to be. I wish I was so patient that when a
          person abused me I could pass away from him and never notice him;
          but sometimes I turn round and fight a little; when they shoot, I
          shoot too.
          I again say to you, listen to the counsel that is given to you,
          from time to time, and be faithful to those men who preside over
          you--to the President of this Stake and his Council, to brother
          Hunter as the Presiding Bishop, (to whom all the Bishops are
          amenable for their conduct), and to all other officers in their
          Let us all observe obedience to our public officers, be subject
          to them and listen to them; and all do the best they can; and
          when we are absent, I know just how you will do, you will do
          exactly as I used to when my father went away. He would say; "My
          son Heber, I want you to go to hoeing corn, and to stick to it
          until I come back." I would put my best foot foremost, and if any
          of my play-fellows came round me, I would say, "Come, boys, let
          us make a good job of this corn, that when my father comes home
          he may rejoice in the good conduct of his son Heber." It will be
          the same with the boys at the public works, they will say, "Boys
          let us do the best we can while they are gone."
          Now, brethren, do not be eye servants, do not be merely
          Christians and Saints while you are here, but be Saints when you
          are at home, in your secret closets, and in your family, &c. When
          you labor, be Saints and work while it is called to day you
          cannot do any too much.
          Be faithful in your families, and in your prayer circles; be
          faithful to your wives and to your children; and I say to the
          wives, be faithful to your husbands and children; and in so doing
          I know God will bless us to an extent that we have never yet
          experienced. Let us do right when we are behind the house, in
          front of it, or in the inside; when we are down in the cellar, up
          stairs, in the meadow, or in the field; and whatever we do, let
          us do it in the name of the Lord our God. When we sow our wheat,
          our beans, peas, and potatoes, let us bow down and ask God to
          bless the seed and the earth, and warm it, that it may bring
          forth in abundance, that we may reap the best crops we ever
          reaped in our lives. Often, when a little child calls upon God to
          change the mind of its father or mother, the prayer will be
          heard. I recollect the circumstance of a little boy's being left
          in the house while his mother went on a visit; the boy used to
          get hold of a valuable piece of crockery so she warned him not to
          touch it in her absence, telling him if he did would certainly
          break it, and she should whip him. He took it, and sure enough it
          slipped out of his hands and broke. The little fellow prayed to
          his Father in heaven, in the name of Jesus, that his mother might
          not feel disposed to whip him. When she came home she had not
          power to punish him. Have you not as much faith and confidence in
          God as that little boy? It was the same with Daniel in the den of
          lions. The decree of the king was that he should be thrown into
          the lions' den. Daniel called upon his Father continually to take
          the ferocious feeling from the lions, that they might not have
          power to harm him, and it was accomplished according to his cry.
          I could relate scores of circumstances, while I was on missions,
          of men swearing that if I went to their houses they would blow my
          brains out, or do me some violent bodily injury. I would go, but
          instead of putting their threats into execution, nothing would be
          too good for me, and they would say, "Come back, Mr. Kimball, for
          I never had such a good time in my life." I held them by my
          faith, and that is the way in which the devil will be bound; but
          as long as a person will give him a privilege of coming into his
          tabernacle, he will remain, for his object is to get a body. It
          would not be proper for me to come to your house, when you have
          invited a guest to sit with you, and go to casting him out, and I
          should have no power to do it.
          We are growing pretty fast, increasing in faith, multiplying and
          progressing, and we must continue to improve while we live in
          this existence; and when we leave this state, what we do not gain
          here we have got to gain in another. If you do not overcome your
          passions here, you have got to do it there. You are not going to
          step right into the presence of God when you leave this state of
          mortality; you have got to make many covenants and fulfil them to
          the very letter.
          What kind of people ought we to be? We should be Saints of God,
          and not sinners. We are about to start for the south, and several
          are going with us, but none but those who are of one heart and
          one mind.
          This work is never to go down, it has commenced and it will never
          come to an end until it has fulfilled the will of its Author; you
          need not be troubled about that.
          Now, brethren, be humble, be patient, be industrious, and when we
          come back, we want to hear the spinning wheel in every house. We
          do not expect the men to do this buzzing, we expect the sisters
          to do it. I am going to set my folks to work at spinning up the
          wool, to working up the old rags, and to making a little yarn for
          carpeting. I would sooner walk on a rag carpet made by my own
          family, than upon an imported Brussels carpet made in one of the
          best manufactories in the world.
          Let us be industrious and economical, that the blessings of God
          and of all good persons may rest upon us, and we will multiply
          and replenish the earth, and our crops and herds will multiply
          more than they ever have. Listen to the counsel given to you, and
          the devil will have no business with you. The devil can hurt no
          man, only when he gives way to his influence. When he offered
          Jesus the whole world if he would bow down to him, he had no
          power over him; says he, "I am the Son of God, mind your own
          business." Then he took him upon the Temple, and said, "If thou
          be the Son of God, cast thyself down." But he told him to get out
          of his way. The devil had no power over him, any more than he can
          have power over you, if you resist his power. When the devil has
          power over persons, it is because they have done something wrong,
          which gives him power and influence over them. You have heard
          tell of people having the blues; it is not good for men to be
          blue, nor for women either, but it is for them to have confidence
          in God by doing right.
               God bless you, and peace be with you, and I bid you good bye
          for a season, and pray that consolation may be with you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / George
          Albert Smith, August 12, 1855
                        George Albert Smith, August 12, 1855
                                PREACHING THE GOSPEL.
            An address by Elder George A. Smith, Delivered in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, August 12, 1855.
          It used to be, in the days of the Prophet Joseph, a kind of
          common adage that "Mormonism" flourished best out of doors, and
          although we struggled hard at the time that the brethren
          undertook in Missouri to build a hewed log house that would cost
          about $1200, yet that tried the faith of many, and was more than
          we accomplished before the Saints were driven from Jackson
          County, and we failed to erect a building big enough to hold the
          Saints previous to the death of the Prophet. At the time of his
          death we were still trying to build a Temple, but all our
          exertions only resulted in our having to go out of doors for room
          We on the present occasion have the pleasure of sitting out of
          doors, and of listening to the counsel and instruction of the
          servants of God without being crowded, from the fact that we have
          Father's big kitchen to meet in, and in this capacious Bowery we
          can enjoy a great deal of comfort, instead of being jammed into
          our large Tabernacle, those of us who could get in, and the
          balance being obliged to go home.
          It is by the request of my brethren that I arise on the present
          occasion to offer a few reflections for your consideration. When
          I was first called upon by the Prophet to go and preach the
          Gospel, I received a little good advice, which I have endeavored
          to profit by ever since, and that too, to the best of my ability.
          In the morning, as I was about to start on my first mission to
          preach the Gospel, I waited upon brother Joseph, and asked if he
          had any advice to give me. "Yes," said he, "George A., preach
          short sermons, make short prayers, deliver your sermons with a
          prayerful heart, and you will be blessed, and the truth will
          prosper in your hands." I was a boy of seventeen at the time, and
          I called this my college education; I however took a second
          degree, calling upon father Joseph Smith, who was the Patriarch
          of the Church, and as I was about starting, he said, "One word of
          advice George A., whatever you do, be careful to go in at the
          little end of the horn, then, if you increase, though it be but a
          very little, you are sure to come out at the big end; but if you
          go in at the big end, you are certain to come out at the small
          Ever since that time I have applied it, and thought often of the
          old gentleman's counsel, and I have found it to be very correct.
          At that time Elder Sidney Rigdon, our great preacher, (the
          perfect comber of all the sects,) a man that could bring to bear
          all the big, jaw-cracking words of the English language, and who
          could fill up the interstices with quotations from other
          languages, and bring all to illustrate the Gospel of Christ, and
          to contrast it with the errors of the different sects to which he
          had formerly belonged, I remember seeing him get up to preach
          when there were present Professor Seixas and several other
          learned gentlemen who were on a visit to Kirtland, and President
          Rigdon wanted to show himself to the best possible advantage. I
          discovered his error when he first began speaking; I saw that he
          was in his high heeled boots, and at the commencement he soared
          so far above his subject that he could not get down to it; his
          whole discourse was a constant series of efforts to descend to a
          style requisite to illustrate the simplicity of the Gospel, the
          natural result of his commencing on too high a key--the
          difficulty and trouble was that he commenced on too grand a scale
          to carry it through successfully.
          Now if he had commenced to preach to those learned men the first
          simple principles of the Gospel, and then, as the Spirit had
          opened up things to his mind, have gone into the more advanced
          principles, he might have succeeded as he desired, but he got up
          with the intention of showing his great big self, and began at
          the big end of the horn.
          There are several young Elders present, who are going on
          missions, and the advice that I received may not be uninteresting
          to them. I have known many young Elders go out preaching, and the
          first thing they would do when they began to preach would be to
          tell what a tremendous smart sermon they were going to preach,
          and what wonderful results would follow; and I have seen those
          dashing kind of fellows carry on until they withered, and became
          depreciated, and went out at the little end of the horn.
          Now when we present ourselves to a congregation of people, the
          first thing should be plainly and simply to communicate to them
          the first principles that we receive, in the best possible
          manner. But what is the best way to communicate them to the
          inhabitants of the earth? Shall we select the greatest
          jaw-cracking words in the English language, and from other
          languages, or shall we use reasoning the most abstruse and
          mysterious? The best method is to select the best and simplest
          way in our possession, and you will find that to be the most
          successful method of proclaiming the Gospel. You may note it when
          you will, in men that go forth to proclaim the truth, and you
          discover that the man who has the fewest words communicates his
          ideas to the people, as a general thing, in the plainest manner.
          When a man uses ten or fifteen superfluous words to convey one
          simple idea, his real meaning is lost, he reaches beyond all the
          rules of grammar and rhetoric, and his idea, which, had it been
          clothed with simple and appropriate language, might have been
          good, is lost for want of more suitable words. It is like Massa
          Gratian's wit--"two grains of wheat hid in three barrels of
          chaff." It is my advice that our Elders should study brevity in
          all their discourses and communications to the people, and that
          they should speak in the plainest and simplest manner; for if
          they were to do this--speak so that the unlearned can comprehend,
          then the learned will be sure to understand, unless they have got
          their ears so twisted that it is vulgar for them to listen to
          common conversation; they are like the young gentleman who had
          just come from college and was desirous of making a considerable
          show, so when he stopped at a country hotel, he gave the
          following orders to the ostler--"You will extricate the quadruped
          from the vehicle, stabulate him, donate him an adequate supply of
          nutritious aliment, and when the Aurora of man shall illumine the
          celestial horizon I will award thee a pecuniary compensation."
          The lad went into the house to the old man, crying--"Landlord,
          there is a Dutchman out here; I can't understand a word he says,
          do come and talk to him yourself." (Laughter). Now if he had
          said--"unharness the horse, water and feed him, and I will pay
          you for it in the morning," he would have been understood by the
          ostler. But the fact is, the world through their wisdom know not
          God, and have lost sight of and forgotten the simplicity of our
          fathers, and the plainness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the
          reason is, that from the beginning the plan of salvation was too
          plain and simple to be interesting to the learned, and it has
          ever since been the design of men of learning, to couch the
          wisdom and knowledge of the world in such high flown language
          that the poorer classes of mankind could not get anywhere near
          them, and thereby hide it in the superabundance of nonsense they
          made use of; they made use of thousands of words to blind the
          ignorant and illiterate, that they might be kept in the dark, and
          remain in ignorance all through the learning and cunning of men.
          These are my sentiments upon that subject in brief, and however
          much I may break or violate the instructions I received from
          President Joseph Smith to preach short sermons, and make short
          prayers, I have always endeavored to observe those instructions,
          though I may have failed on some occasions. Sometimes perhaps
          over anxiety has led me beyond the mark, but as a general thing I
          have endeavored to observe them strictly, and have found it to be
          good to do so, and I have often and do yet frequently think of my
          first degree.
          But I ought to make some acknowledgment and confessions probably.
          I well remember the first time I ever broke those instructions; I
          was preaching in Virginia, in the County of Tyler. There was a
          Methodist preacher by the name of West, that would follow me
          wherever I went, and when I got through preaching he would get up
          to burlesque me, and he would talk for an hour or two, and then
          he would get his congregation to sing, but with all he could do
          he could not get more than thirty or forty to come and hear him
          preach, whereas I had from three to four hundred attentive
          hearers. So on one certain occasion he came with his Methodist
          friends to the meeting, and I invited him to preach first, but
          no--he said he was "going to preach just as soon as I got
          through;" so I said to myself, "You will have to wait a pretty
          considerable spell, old gentleman;" and I then selected and read
          one of the longest chapters I could find in the Bible, and read
          it slowly; then read a long hymn and lined it off, and got the
          preacher to sing it for me, after which I preached about two
          hours and a half. I saw the preacher was in a terrible great
          hurry to get a chance to speak; the reason was, there were many
          at the meeting who had come from 10 to 30 miles on purpose to
          hear me, the country being very thinly settled, and some of them
          would have turned their pigs out of the pen if they had known
          West was going to preach in it, and the very moment I had done
          speaking, he jumped up and said he wanted to preach before I
          dismissed the congregation. When he commenced about 300 of the
          congregation left.
          He had made a practice of following every "Mormon" Elder that
          came into the country, and keeping up his harangue against the
          truth, then his Methodist brethren would join him and sing at the
          top of their voices until the congregation dispersed, and it was
          his intention to serve me the same, but he did not succeed quite
          so well as he anticipated.
          That was the first time that I recollect violating the
          instructions I had received, and I must say that I did not repent
          of it for a good many years, and I have not fully done so yet,
          for I thought that a man must be pardoned for straining his
          instructions on an occasion like that; and the fact is, we do not
          often find such men. This man followed and harassed our Elders
          every time they went into the country, and kept on their track
          until he had run them clear out of the country. When he perceived
          I would preach about there, he gave public notice that if I came
          into the neighborhood where he lived I should get a coat of tar
          and feathers; so on hearing this, I resolved to go and try it.
          There was a man by the name of Mr. Willey, a near neighbor of the
          Rev. Mr. West. He was a small man of about 130lbs. weight, with a
          red head, and he had 13 boys with red heads, each of them
          weighing from 180 to 150 lbs. He had his boys perfectly drilled,
          and when he could not beat the opposite party at the ballot box
          by voting, he could always beat them by fighting; for he and his
          red headed boys, (for they had hair as red as my wig that I wear
          sometimes,) were more than a match for any party they come in
          contact with in the County of Tyler; when he could not beat them
          in the election, he always could the other way. When he heard
          that West, the Methodist preacher, was going to have me tarred
          and feathered, he sent his best looking daughter on horseback
          over the mountains, dressed in the finest silk, and invited me to
          go over and preach, and assured me that I need not fear the least
          danger from the Methodists threatening to tar and feather me. I
          sent an appointment that I would preach at his house in two
          weeks. Accordingly I proceeded on my way to visit the old man,
          filling some appointments previously given on Buffalo Creek,
          Monongahela county, and about 15 miles from Mr. Willey's, I met
          three young men, all with red heads, well mounted, and standing
          about 6 feet 2 inches, dressed in Kentucky jeans, but very neat
          and clean. They looked big enough to have been employed in
          Erebus, as strikers for Vulcan, forging thunder-bolts for
          Jupiter. They informed me that they were the sons of Mr. Willey,
          and that he had sent them to show me the way through the
          mountains. They remarked that it was rather a wild country to
          travel in alone, and they likewise informed me that the rumor was
          that West, the Methodist priest, was intending to meet me with a
          party of his pious brethren, and give me a coat of tar and
          feathers, but assured me, in the name of their father, that I
          need not apprehend the least possible danger.
          Before I got into the neighborhood I was met by two or three
          other red headed gentlemen, and we shortly after arrived at the
          old man's residence, where I was treated with every kindness, and
          the first salutation was an assurance that I need not be the
          least afraid, or anticipate that any harm would come to me from
          my Methodist friends: and the beauty of it was, as I learned
          afterward, he had long desired an opportunity to whip the whole
          Methodist church; and if they had turned out to mob me, he would
          then have had a good chance to pounce upon them. This is an
          illustration of what men will do to accomplish their ends, or the
          objects they have in view.
          And as long as I remained in that part of the county of Tyler,
          the old man would have two or three of these boys go along with
          me to show me the way through the country wherever I wished to
          go, and two or three more looking out. I suppose he really wanted
          to have the Methodists execute their threat, and attempt to mob
          me; but West knowing the feelings of the red headed troop, he
          concluded it was best not to do so.
          Notwithstanding all the opposition, we did succeed in gathering a
          few "Mormons" in that county. I am aware that things were
          different then to what they are now, for then when an Elder
          presented "Mormonism" in a town or city, every one that is
          acquainted with our history knows that it was looked upon by all
          as a mere matter of humbug. "Why," they would say, "it will be
          all down in two or three weeks; these are some idle fellows going
          about for the sake of getting a living." But now it is altogether
          different; when a "Mormon" goes forth to preach, however much
          they may oppose him and abuse him, they know that he represents
          an almighty people, and that he stands in connection with and is
          backed up by the greatest men of the age. They know that the
          "Mormons" cannot be successfully contended with by argument and
          moral suasion, but only on the old Missourian system of
          mobocracy; they know that the priests have given it up years ago.
          "O," say they, "if you talk with a Mormon Elder, you are sure to
          get worsted; tar and feather them, mob them, and stone them out
          of the country, for if you listen to them, you will be deceived."
          I remember when Joseph first got the Abrahamic records, (and let
          me here say that I hope those brethren and sisters who are not
          already subscribers to the Deseret News, will go to the office
          and commence to take it while that important record is being
          published, for it will be of great service in years to come,)
          there was in the State of New York a very pious Presbyterian
          deacon, who was very intimate with my father and mother, when
          they were members of the same church; and, as he was passing
          through Kirtland, called to see them. It was almost a violation
          of the pious old man's faith to shake hands with my father when
          he met him, but he ventured, and finally got courage enough to
          call, and not only shake hands, but have a little conversation.
          My father told him that Joseph had got this Book of Abraham, and
          that he could translate it, and that it revealed some very
          important principles. "It is curious," replied the old man, "I
          really would like to see the record."
          "Well, deacon," said my father, "come, I will go over with you to
          the Prophet's, and show you the papyrus."
          "Well, Mr. Smith, but I don't know about going over now."
          "O come along," said my father, "there is plenty of time before
          dinner, it is but a few steps--let us walk over while dinner is
          being prepared."
          "Mr. Smith, Mr. Smith, there is great danger of being
          de--cei--ved! Mr. Smith--I'd rather not go!"
          This is the way men feel; they are all the time afraid of being
          deceived; when the truth comes, they dare not trust their eyes,
          their ears, or their understanding; they are all the day long
          fearing and trembling lest they should be deceived. And at the
          same time, Infidelity, Mesmerism, Electrobiology, spiritual
          communications of various kinds and grades are taking hold of the
          minds of the human race, from those in the highest ranks of
          society to the lowest.
          And here in the newspapers we will find half their columns taken
          up with accounts of murder, suicide, plunder, bloodshed, and
          every other species of crime. "And what of it," says one. Why,
          crime seems to be the principal feature of the day. And what is
          the cause of all this? The reason is because the people have
          rejected the truth, and therefore the light of truth has ceased
          to shine in their hearts.
          They thirst for one another's blood, and they thirst after and
          desire each other's destruction, and they have no feeling for
          anything but blood and slaughter: and the great question the
          world over, but especially in the East, is whether the Emperor of
          Russia shall have the privilege of building as many ships as he
          may think proper, and putting them in the Black Sea. He says that
          a part of the Black Sea and the Sea of Azoff are in his
          dominions, and that he will do as he pleases; but the allied
          powers swear that he shall not, and they stake the lives of
          millions, and declare that he shall not build any more ships than
          some half dozen other nations see proper to keep in that sea.
          This seems to be the whole question which causes the lives of
          millions to be in jeopardy continually.
          I say, read the Deseret News; read the accounts of the missions
          of the Elders; read the great things that are being revealed week
          after week--the History of the Prophet, the revelations which
          came through him and see how rapidly they are fulfilling, and
          observe how partyism and constant rangling are seizing the human
          mind, and how tremendously they will contend with each other, and
          sustain one another in lies, and speak evil of those who are
          With these remarks I shall give way, praying that the Lord may
          bless you forever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / George
          Albert Smith, September 23, 1855
                       George Albert Smith, September 23, 1855
                            THE HISTORY OF MAHOMEDANISM.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / George
          Albert Smith, September 23, 1855
                            THE HISTORY OF MAHOMEDANISM.
             A Discourse by Elder G. A. Smith, Delivered in the Bowery, 
                      Great Salt Lake City, September 23, 1855.
          I arise before you this morning, unexpectedly; but as I always
          feel willing to make an attempt to offer some reflections for the
          consideration of my brethren and sisters, I feel a degree of
          pleasure. While looking at the improved appearance of our benches
          to-day, I see quite a number of comfortable seats have been
          brought here, which will in a great degree dispense with the
          occasional breaking of temporary seats, disturbing the
          The Lord has said, in a revelation given through Joseph Smith,
          that it is His purpose to take care of His Saints. He also
          promised His people, in the commencement of the foundation of
          this Church, to sift them as with a sieve. Some of the old
          Prophets, in referring to the work of the last days, speak of the
          sieve of vanity. The history of this people since the Church was
          organized, has been one continued scene of changes.
          In the early years of the Church, there was a great anxiety among
          the brethren to travel and preach the Gospel among the Lamanites,
          but the rigid laws of the United States at that time, prevented
          any intercourse with them. The brethren used to feel animated
          upon the subject; the would speak in tongues and prophesy, and
          rejoice exceedingly in the things that were about to transpire,
          or that they believed would transpire when they should be
          permitted to go and preach the Gospel to the Lamanites.
          A series of unexpected and unthought of events has at length
          brought about an opportunity, on our part, to instruct these
          remnants of the house of Israel in the best knowledge it is
          possible for us to impart to them.
          We have now been for eight years right in their midst, where we
          could have an opportunity of teaching them to read, if we chose;
          of teaching them to work, or anything else we may take the time,
          labor, and expense to teach them. We are now familiar with their
          habits, character, and customs, to a considerable extent.
          When the curse of the Almighty comes upon a people, it certainly
          is the work of generations to remove it. When Cain brought a
          curse upon his own head, and that of his household, his after
          generations bore the same curse.
          The curse that came upon Canaan, the son of Ham, has extended to
          a great portion of the human race, and has continued to the
          present day.
          For the last hundred years, philanthropists, who were ignorant of
          the order of God--of the irrevocable decrees of the
          Almighty--have exerted themselves vigorously to thwart the
          purposes of the Almighty, in trying to remove the curse of
          servitude from the descendants of Canaan; but their endeavors are
          vain and useless; it is labor lost, and answers no end, only so
          far as it serves to multiply the difficulties and perplexities
          which are rising in this generation, to bring about the great
          destruction of corruption and wickedness from the earth; in this
          way it all indirectly has designed they shall hold that position,
          it is worse than useless for any man or set of men, to undertake
          to put them in a position to rule.
          The Lord conferred portions of the Priesthood upon certain races
          of men, and through promises made to their fathers they were
          entitled to the rights, and blessings, and privileges of that
          Priesthood. Other races, in consequence of their corruptions,
          their murders, their wickedness, or the wickedness of their
          fathers, had the Priesthood taken from them, and the curse that
          was upon them was decreed should descend upon their posterity
          after them, it was decreed that they should not bear rule.
          In looking abroad on the earth and seeing the effects produced
          upon different races of men, it will be plainly discovered that
          there are races who have never been permitted to bear rule to any
          great extent.
          The God of heaven is the creator and proprietor of the earth; we
          will admit, however, that His claim to it has been considered by
          men very weak for many generations; His title has been, I would
          not say disputed, but it has been absolutely denied for a great
          while, so much so, that when the Son of God came on the earth he
          had nowhere to lay his head; he said himself, "The foxes have
          holes, and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man
          hath not where to lay his head."
          We also read that when the Savior was taken by the tempter on to
          an exceeding high mountain, he showed him the kingdoms of the
          world, and the glory of them, saying, "All these will I give unto
          thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me," although "the poor
          devil" did not own a single foot of it.
          This proves that Satan considered himself so much in possession
          of the earth, as to actually exclude the Savior's supremacy
          entirely, and wished to place him in a position that it might
          never be acknowledged; but the Savior said, "Get thee behind me,
          Satan, thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt
          thou serve."
          The dominion of portions of the earth has changed hands
          frequently, and sometimes in a very unexpected and miraculous
          manner; the Romans overpowered it to a very great extent, and all
          that was considered habitable, or that was then known, was either
          reduced to submission to the Roman sway, compelled to pay
          tribute, or at least to acknowledge Roman supremacy, with a very
          few exceptions; this is as far as profane history extends: hence,
          says Luke, "And it came to pass in those days there went out a
          decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.
          And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city."--ii. 1,
          3. This circumstance shows the existence of several emperors
          possessed of sufficient domains and power in the Roman empire to
          demand taxation of all the world.
          That nation has been compared to a nation of iron in the visions
          of the Prophet Daniel; it has been considered, by most
          commentators upon the word of God, that the Prophet Daniel
          considered the Roman empire to be typified by the dream of
          Nebuchadnezzar, in which it is represented as being of iron in
          the great image which he saw.
          I believe it came nearer exercising universal dominion than any
          other empire that has ever existed. Nations of the present time
          have obtained dominion over a greater extent of the earth's
          surface than the Roman empire did, yet it appears to be
          inhabited, cultivated, improved, and discovered to a far greater
          extent in proportion.
          It has been said by some geographers that the empire of Russia is
          the most extensive one that ever existed; others, that the empire
          of Charles the Fifth of Germany, which included Spain, Germany,
          the Netherlands, and Mexico, Guatemala, and nearly all South
          America, was the greatest. Others say the present dominions of
          Queen Victoria are the most extensive of any other. Be that as it
          may, it is but a mere matter of speculation. Rome at its time was
          the only government that was considered all powerful. That this
          power was given by the Almighty, no man who believes in the
          dealings of God with men will dispute, though many who are
          sceptical on this subject may produce different ideas and views.
          From the time Rome was founded--a small city upon the seven hills
          of the Tiber, to the final extent of its dominion, was eight
          hundred years, when it commenced to crumble, and continued so
          doing until it fell in pieces.
          About six hundred years after Christ a prophet rose in Arabia, by
          the name of Mahomet, who was born in 569; he was an orphan boy;
          his father (Abdallah) having died, he was left in childhood, and
          was raised under the care of his uncle, whose name was Abu Taleb,
          and finally became an apprentice to learn the mercantile
          business; he was sent by his master several times on trading
          expeditions, as his agent, to take charge of his train of
          He subsequently married Kadija, the widow of his employer, who
          had left her, at his death, considerable wealth.
          Mahomet carried on the business his master left, profitably,
          until he professed and proclaimed to the world to have received a
          mission from heaven. He was five years in making his first
          convert; this was rather slow progress; and that convert, when
          made, was only a boy of eleven years of age, whose name was Ali,
          the son of Abu Taleb.
          It will be recollected that the climate of Arabia brings persons
          to maturity in body and mind much earlier than colder climates.
          Mahomet and Ali commenced to preach, and finally succeeded in
          gathering around them a considerable number of adherents.
          Mahomet descended from one of the most noble families of the
          Koreish; he came direct in descent from Ishmael, the son of
          He was set upon by that powerful and popular tribe, the Koreish,
          who were determined to destroy him, as he proclaimed that their
          idol gods were all a humbug, and setting forth but one true and
          living God for them to worship. The persecution continued to
          increase until he was obliged to leave Mecca, and flee for his
          life to Medina, on 15th July, 622, which is the great Hegira or
          Mahometan era. On leaving his native city, Al Abbas, his uncle,
          one of the most powerful chiefs of the Koreish, made the Ansars,
          as his friends in Medina were called, promise and swear that they
          would not deceive, but would protect his nephew at the expense of
          their lives, though Al Abbas himself did not then believe in his
          divine mission.
          Mahomet continued preaching; there was nothing in his religion to
          license iniquity or corruption; he preached the moral doctrines
          which the Savior taught; viz., to do as they would be done by;
          and not to do violence to any man, nor to render evil for evil;
          and to worship one God.
          He continued so to preach until he was driven from his home.
          After he had commenced preaching his doctrine extensively in
          different parts of Arabia, and many had believed it, his
          persecutors at Mecca gathered a large force, and, followed him,
          with a determination to exterminate him and his friends. They
          followed him up with their persecutions until he got so mad, that
          he could not stand it any longer; his religion caved in, he drew
          his sword, gathered his followers, and gave his enemies such a
          drubbing that they went off ashamed. This was the battle of Bedr.
          They raised a superior force of 3000 men, and had a second fight
          with the prophet (in 626) who could scarcely muster 1200 men; his
          orders not being obeyed, his followers left the field, but the
          prophet was determined not to be beat from the track, and
          concluded to fight the battle alone; his intrepidity and boldness
          on the occasion converted a leader of the infidel army, named
          Khaled, and he subsequently made him his general, and surnamed
          him the sword of God. This is called the battle of Ohud.
          One hundred years extended the Mahometan power over more
          territory than the Romans gained in eight hundred years; in a
          very short time all Arabia bowed to his sceptre, and he was
          confirmed in his kingly power, and assumed the ensigns of royalty
          in 628.
          He then sends his ambassadors to visit the neighboring nations,
          for he was now the monarch of Arabia, and asked them to receive
          his religion. They visited Khosroes the Great, king of the
          Persians, one of the most warlike sovereigns of his time.
          Mahomet's ministers presented his letters, but the Persian king
          haughtily tore them in pieces, ordered the ambassadors to be
          scourged, and sent them home in disgrace. They returned to Medina
          and found Mahomet mending his shoes, and reported their
          treatment; with tears he replied, "You need not be alarmed, boys,
          for many of you will lie to riot in the white palace of
          It was thought that Mahomet's death would put a final stop to the
          progress of his religion; some persons gave him poison to see
          whether he was a prophet or not, and it was his belief that
          poison was the cause of his death. He died at the age of
          sixty-three, in 632, and was succeeded by his father-in-law, Abu
          Bukker, who was very faithful in sustaining the prophet during
          his life, and who was acknowledged as the first Khalif after the
          prophet's death. This man continued the war which Mahomet had
          commenced, for when the prophet had found that the people would
          not leave their idols by being preached to, he concluded the
          sword was the best argument; he therefore decided he would take
          up the line of march to his native city, sustained by a powerful
          army. He destroyed the idols in the Kaaba, the temple of Mecca,
          and dedicated it to be the great temple of Mahomet, and the
          centre of Mahometan worship, which position it has held up to the
          present time. Mahomet set his examples, gave out his laws in
          relation to pilgrimage, prayer, and matrimony, and adopted many
          rigid rules, which he kept strictly himself, and which his
          followers have observed for many generations; and in his last
          pilgrimage, in 632, 114,000 Mussulmen converts marched under his
          Now this man descended from Abraham and was no doubt raised up by
          God on purpose to scourge the world for their idolatry.
          Immediately after his death, his successors commenced a series of
          campaigns against the Roman or Greek empire, under the command of
          Khaled the Great, surnamed the sword of God, and Abu Obediah.
          During the two years of the reign of Abu Bukker, who ascended the
          throne in 632, he determined to enforce the new religion upon the
          inhabitants of Persia. This expedition, however, failed in
          consequence of its being too weak; but the expeditions against
          the Greeks were more successful; battle after battle was fought,
          province after province was surrendered, and millions were
          converted to the new faith; and on the death of Abu Bukker, Omar
          Ebu Al Khattab ascended the throne in 634, and the war continued.
          During the reign of Omar they conquered Syria and Egypt,
          overthrew the Persian monarchy, the old dynasty of the Sassanides
          yielded their standard (the blacksmith's leather apron), which
          had floated for several hundred years in triumph over the Persian
          monarchy, to the Saracen rule, and many who surrounded Mahomet's
          person in times of his greatest danger rioted in the white palace
          of Khosroes, which was taken by the Arabs in 637, and where they
          divided among themselves a spoil of sixty millions of pounds
          sterling, and many of the companions of the prophet wept when
          they saw this prophecy so literally fulfilled.
          Their manner of doing business was singular; they had a way of
          their own. When they entered the Persian empire, led by
          Saud-e-Wekkauss, they received a message from Zezdejrd the king,
          that they were a pack of poor devils, that they came from a
          country which was a desert, and had not much to eat, and if they
          would go home and mind their own business he would load their
          camels with dates. They replied, that they did not come for his
          riches, nor yet for the fruits of his country, they knew they
          were poor, and had lived on green lizards and snails, but that
          had nothing to do with the matter, their business was to present
          to the king and his people the pure religion which God had
          revealed to them, and if they would accept of it, and obey its
          precepts, not one hair of their heads should be hurt, if they
          would not accept of it, if they would not obey it, they would
          require of them all to pay tribute, and if they would not pay
          tribute, they would cut off their heads. It was all told in three
          words, the Koran, tribute, or the sword.
          The proud monarch could not bow to this, but called out his
          immense armies and placed them under the command of Rustum, the
          son of Furrukh-zaud and Ameir ul Omra of the empire. And a
          decisive battle was fought at Kaudsiah; this opened the whole of
          the Persian monarchy to Saracenic dominion. Saud-e Wekkauss was
          afflicted with a disease called the Sciatica, which rendered his
          joints so stiff that he could not ride on horseback; he sounded
          the Tekbair (alla hu akbar--God he is great) from a terrace of
          the palace in Kaudsiah, which was the signal of battle.
          The Persian king drew up his hosts amounting to one hundred and
          twenty thousand men, while the Mahometan army amounted only to
          thirty thousand men. The battle commenced in the morning at eight
          o' clock and lasted until dark, when every Saracen lay down on
          the ground where he finished his day's work.
          The women of the Saracens carried them food, and dressed their
          wounds, and carried away the wounded and dead, but the soldiers,
          men, and officers, never left their position until the call was
          given in the morning, "God is great." On account of the position
          which each army occupied, the one army could not present a
          greater front than the other; they fought the second day, the
          third, and the fourth, until tens of thousands were killed. On
          the second day the Saracens received a reinforcement of two
          thousand men that had marched five hundred miles under forced
          marches; the Persians also received a reinforcement of 30,000
          men, and on the fourth day at noon the conflict was decided,
          after about one hundred thousand men had been slaughtered on the
          I relate this to show you what religious zeal will accomplish.
          Mahomet, in his day, cautioned his people not to drink wine, or
          in other words, he had given them a "word of wisdom," showing
          that it was not proper to drink wine. There was a warrior whose
          name was Abu Mohudjen, of some considerable reputation at the
          time, who had broken this law of Mahomet; he had taken some of
          the good wine of Persia, in consequence of which he had been put
          in chains, by order of Saud, and confined in the palace of
          Kaudsiah, while the battle was going on so severely. The general
          had not left a single staff officer to communicate the word of
          command, from the point the Mahometan general occupied, to his
          officers in the field, so he had to send them by his wives, or
          his servants. The only man left about the house was the general,
          and this officer in irons, who begged of the women to beseech the
          general to dismiss him, and let him go and fight, but they dare
          not do it for fear of the wrath of their husband. He importuned
          so earnestly when they brought to him his provisions, declaring
          that if he did not die in the field, he would return again and
          put on the irons, that they concluded to let him go, so they gave
          him the general's piebald mare and a suit of his armor, and away
          he went to the battle field.
          Saud was not long in observing the actions of the disguised
          warrior, whose extraordinary prowess excited his admiration. He
          inquired of his attendants who he was, but they were unable to
          give him any information. He concluded that if it were possible
          to suppose that God sent assistance on such occasions, it must be
          the immortal Kezzer, which word signifies Enoch, Elias, St. John
          the Evangelist, or St. George.
          The Arabs, through suffering severely from the annoyance of the
          Persians' elephants, and from the firm and resolute resistance of
          the troops of Rustum where he commanded in person, were repulsed
          and thrown into disorder, and were only recovered by the
          extraordinary and unlooked for exertions of Abu Mohudjen,
          disguised in the armor of Saud.
               After the battle the imprisoned officer returned to his
          quarters, and the women again put the irons on him, and nothing
          was said to the general about his having been set at liberty.
          While the general was exulting over his victory, and the immense
          spoil he had taken, he told his wives that the immortal Kezzer
          had fought for him; says he, "The prophet knew I could not ride,
          and I saw a mighty warrior on my piebald mare, leading the way
          wherever the battle was thickest."
          His wives then told him who it was he saw; Saud says, "Bring him
          here, take off his chains, give him the piebald mare and armor,
          and let him drink all the wine he pleases all the days of his
          life." "But," says the old officer, "if I drink wine now, I shall
          be doing that which is contrary to the law of God, which if I
          could atone for by imprisonment I would drink it, but as I
          cannot, I will drink no more wine;" and he kept his word.
          I relate this to show you what union and religious enthusiasm
          will accomplish: the Greek empire in Asia was crushed to atoms,
          and in one hundred years the Mahometan dominion was more
          extensive than that of the Roman empire in eight hundred years
          from its foundation.
          Persia, Egypt, Mauritiana, and nearly all of Northern Africa,
          Cyprus, and Rhodes were subdued previous to 637, together with
          Syria, Asia Minor, and the countries now known as Turkistan,
          Afghanistan, Beloochistan, Circassia, and Asia Minor, and a part
          of Chinese Tartary. Tarick and Musa completed their conquest of
          Spain in 714; and had it not been for dissensions among
          themselves, the probability is, that the crescent would have now
          surmounted the top of St. Paul's Cathedral in London, instead of
          the cross.
          Christianity had become so corrupt and divided, that none of the
          Christian princes were willing to unite their power with the
          Greek emperor to defend themselves against the Mahometan power,
          or to prevent them overpowering one Christian nation after
          another, for so they continued to do until division among
          themselves prevented their increasing; and now their national
          existence is waning little by little, until it is becoming very
          The battle of Tours, in which 370,000 Mussulmen were killed,
          which prevented the Saracens from not only overrunning France,
          but all Europe, was fought in the year 732, by the French, under
          Charles Martel, who was styled in his time, "the hammerer,"
          because he struck such hard blows in battle. He seized on a
          quantity of church revenues to pay his troops, and for this the
          Catholics damned him to purgatory, and required his children for
          generations to pay for prayers for his relief, but he was the
          great chieftain, as far as man is concerned, that prevented the
          utter annihilation of the religion of the cross, and the
          constituting in the place thereof that of the crescent.
          History is a natural theme with me, and while I have taken so
          much license of your time in tracing the progress of the history
          of nations, I will still say to you, that this Mahometan race,
          this dominant power of the 7th and 8th centuries, were the
          descendants of Abraham, which Mahometan records show in a
          straight-forward genealogy, from the family of Mahomet direct to
          that of Abraham, through the loins of Ishmael, the son of
          Abraham; and in this dominion there certainly was a recognition
          of the dominion of the sons of Abraham, and just as long as they
          abode in the teachings which Mahomet gave them, and walked in
          strict accordance with them, they were united, and prospered; but
          when they ceased to do this, they lost their power and influence,
          to a very great extent.
          I am aware that it is a difficult matter to get an honest history
          of Mahometanism translated into any of the Christian languages.
          One of the best works I ever read upon the subject, and one I can
          put the most confidence in, is Simon Ockley's History of the
          Saracens; it was a translation of a Mahometan historian named Abu
          Abdollah Mahommed Ebu Omar Al Wakidi, who wrote eighty years
          after the flight of Mahomet from Mecca. Ockley prided himself in
          rendering the Arabic in good style, although his religious
          prejudices were so strong that he durst not render the sentiments
          he translated in full force, without rather blinding them a
          little. He would frequently translate as it ought to be, as nigh
          as he could, and then stick down a note in the margin, and say,
          "That was only done out of hypocrisy." He is one of the best
          authors, or the one I would rather read.
          It is a hard matter, as I have said, to get an honest history of
          any nation or people by their enemies. For instance, read
          Governor Ford's History of Illinois, and you will find that he
          will contradict himself half-a-dozen times in one statement, for
          fear that he will not flatter the prejudices the people had
          against the "Mormons." He would in one place assert that he had
          never done anything to favor the Anti-Mormons, and then
          immediately afterwards declare that he could not see why the
          Anti-Mormons could have any feelings against him, when he had
          done so much for them; and then go on to enumerate how he
          prevented Backenstos from arresting the house burners; yet he
          declares he had never done anything to favor them, and wonders
          why that party should feel crossways to him. This is the temper
          of almost all men who undertake to write the history of their
          Just read the reports of different generals on the battle fields
          of the Crimea, and you will see that every one has a different
          side to it. These reports have got to be received with great
          allowance all round.
          All the Christian translations of Mahometan history, as well as
          of the Koran, should be received with a great deal of allowance.
          I would recommend the reading of Major David Price's "History of
          the Mahometan Empire." He was educated and trained to be a Church
          of England man, but had not many conscientious scruples on
          religion; still he had prejudices against the Mahometans, so that
          when you read it, you must throw your ear a little quartering. I
          consider Bush's "life of Mahomet" written under the influence of
          a violent Christian prejudice. I would prefer the account in
          Crichton's "Arabia" to Bush.
          I would like to inspire in the minds of the youth a disposition
          to study oriental history, because a great deal of human nature
          is learned therein: how powerful dominions grew up in a short
          time, and how, through the violation of the principles of union,
          those nations have as quickly come to naught. Many useful lessons
          are taught on the pages of history.
          Within the last eighty years our own republican government has
          increased its territorial limits about threefold, and it is
          constantly on the increase.
          The fact is, if a man who is in the habit of raising trees makes
          his top to grow larger in proportion to the roots and the main
          trunk of the tree, it will break asunder or be uprooted. The
          American power is in danger of losing its balance by extending
          its limits faster than it accumulates strength to consolidate
          them together.
          I will explain one term which I have used. At the time that
          Mahomet fled from Mecca, (July 15, 622,) it was the new moon: the
          Mussulmen therefore adopted the crescent as their religious
          When the Mahometans conquered a Christian church, and turned it
          into a mosque, they put the crescent on the top of the cross. The
          old Greek cathedral church of St. Sophia, in Constantinople, is
          now a mosque: the cross is surmounted by a crescent. The Russians
          have conquered and overpowered various countries that were held
          by the Mahometan power, where you may now find the Greek cross
          mounted over the crescent, turning many Mahometan mosques into
          Christian churches. I give this explanation, thinking it may
          perhaps be information to some of our young people present.
          A great deal has been said about some of the religious emperors
          who have had dominion in the earth being remarkably good men; but
          if their characters were impartially examined with any degree of
          criticism, it would be found that many of them used their
          religion as a matter of policy; as the present pretender to the
          throne of France of the house of Bourbon, who is so pious that it
          is said he goes to church six times a day, and that Pope Pius IX
          has christened him his own dear son; I suppose he feels that he
          is honest in heart, but he would like the throne of France, and
          there is probably a better chance to get it by making a great
          deal of pretension to religion than by any other process; and if
          he gets it, he thinks he will have a little better chance to keep
          Such speculations have a tendency to make men religious. Like men
          who write to President Young, saying, "I am a Physician, and
          graduated so and so, and I would like you to write to me, and let
          me know if there ain't a good chance for me to make a comfortable
          living in your place, in case I should embrace your religion, and
          settle among you." We frequently receive just such
          communications. These are the principles that are rankling in the
          breasts of selfish and ambitious men. I say, ever since Adam eat
          the apple it has been more or less the case.
          There was Constantine the Great, who was the first Christian
          emperor; his dominion was termed a Christian dominion, or in
          other words, it was a Catholic dominion, and extended far and
          wide, and everything that dared to oppose it was made to suffer
          the most cruel tyranny. The truths of the Gospel becoming
          absorbed, and swallowed up by Paganism, and Christianity left
          only in name, there grew out of his administration Christian
          division, dispute, war, and distraction, which have continued to
          the present time.
          Look in the history of the revolutions and conspiracies of
          Europe, and you will find that religion has always a finger in
          the matter, even in the present great war: it amounts to about
          simply this --whether the Catholic power shall exclusively
          control the holy places, or whether the Greek power shall. The
          probability is, that the Mahometans have got to surrender them to
          the Christian powers soon; even the mosque of Omar, which is upon
          the site of King Solomon's temple at Jerusalem, will soon be
          surrendered to some Christian power; the only thing that delays
          it is the Christian quarrel between the Greek and Catholic
          I do not consider Great Britain has waged this war so much for
          the sake of religion as to control the trade of India, and the
          way to it: England is after the purse. But all the Catholic
          powers that are in any way concerned in the matter are the
          leading influence in the business to check the growing power of
          the Greek Church; hence it is a religious war. But the men to
          whose ancestors God has given Priesthood, and to whom in the last
          days the privilege of receiving it has been conferred, have been
          abroad, and published the principles of salvation, and the voice
          of the Prophet of God to the world, and now the nations are left
          to wrangle with and destroy each other. It is an old proverb, and
          one of long standing, that "whom the gods would destroy, they
          first make mad." Peace is taken from the earth, and wrath and
          indignation among the people is the result: they care not for
          anything but to quarrel and destroy each other.
          The same spirit that dwelt in the breasts of the Nephites during
          the last battles that were fought by them on this continent, when
          they continued to fight until they were exterminated, is again on
          the earth, and is increasing.
          I was amused the other day in hearing a relation of a visit of
          brother Barlow to his native State, Kentucky. He said, "The
          people are so united in secret conspiracies that everything they
          do not choose to uphold, they will proscribe in every way." Says
          he, "If I had mended a clock or a piece of jewelry, it would have
          been desecrated, and the man that dared to employ me or feed me
          would have been proscribed by the community, through their secret
          organizations." That is the spirit that is abroad on the earth,
          and one party will unite against another, and so on, to the utter
          destruction of every single principle of liberty, human
          happiness, and human right upon the face of the earth, and bring
          down upon the heads of the wicked a terrible destruction, which
          has been predicted by the Prophets.
          I have seen the same spirit operate in the midst of these
          mountains. I have seen individuals here who are filled with the
          spirit of contention--who are filled with the spirit of
          wickedness; I have heard them complain, murmur, and find fault,
          until, by and bye, they conclude Brigham is wrong, the Church is
          wrong, and everything is wrong, and that they would go to
          California, and there stay until the great day, when the Prophet
          should come and set things right.
          This spirit will in the end lead a man to destruction; and all
          that will preserve the Saints in the last days from the general
          destruction in the vortex of ruin to which the world is rushing,
          will be their unity with each other, their clinging with all
          their might, mind, and strength to the building up of this
          kingdom, and making it their only interest, that they may hang
          together as one; knowing the text we started on, that it is the
          Lord's business to provide for His Saints.
          If you excuse me for my Mahometan narrative, I will close my
          remarks, praying that the Lord may bless you, and lead you in
          peace to inherit the celestial kingdom in the end. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Parley
          P. Pratt, September 23, 1855
                         Parley P. Pratt, September 23, 1855
                            MAHOMETANISM AND CHRISTIANITY.
            An Address by Elder Parley P. Pratt, Delivered in the Bowery, 
                      Great Salt Lake City, September 23, 1855.
          My brother, George A. Smith, has wished us to excuse his
          Mahometan narration, but I would feel more like giving a vote of
          thanks to the Almighty and to His servant for so highly
          entertaining and instructing us. 
          I am aware it is not without a great deal of prejudice that we,
          as Europeans, and Americans, and Christians in religion and in
          our education, so called, have looked upon the history of
          Mahomet, or even the name; and even now we may think that
          Mahometanism, compared with Christianity as it exists in the
          world, is a kind of heathenism, or something dreadful, and the
          other we look upon as something very pretty, only a little
          crippled; and for my part, I hardly know which to call the
          idolatrous side of the question, unless we consider Mahometanism
          Christianity, in one sense, and that which has been called
          Christianity, heathenism.
          Mahometanism included the doctrine that there was one God--that
          He was great, even the creator of all things, and that the people
          by right should worship Him. History abundantly shows the
          followers of Mahomet did not take the sword, either to enforce
          their religion or to defend themselves, until compelled to do so
          by the persecutions of their enemies, and then it was the only
          alternative that presented itself, to take up the sword and put
          down idolatry, and establish the worship of the one God; or, on
          the other hand, be crushed and cease to be, on account of the
          idolatrous nations around them; they seemed to act on the
          defensive, although it might legally be considered aggression.
          The Greek and Roman Churches, which have been called Christian,
          and which take the name of Christians as a cloak, have worshipped
          innumerable idols. On this account, on the simple subject of the
          Deity and His worship, if nothing more, I should rather incline,
          of the two, after all my early traditions, education, and
          prejudices, to the side of Mahomet, for on this point he is on
          the side of truth, and the Christian world on the side of
          idolatry and heathenism.
          In the first place, the latter lay it down as a point of
          theology, and it is a foundation point too, that there is one
          only true God, consisting of three persons, the Father, Son, and
          Holy Ghost, but without body, parts, or passions. Here is the
          exact image and likeness of an idol established through the
          principal creeds of Christendom, that is, if it is an image at
          all, or if it makes a shadow at all, it is that of an idol: it is
          a being that never existed in heaven, earth, or hell; it will not
          make even a shadow. Indeed, it is a thing literally motionless
          and powerless, as much so as any term that can be used to mean
          Jesus Christ, whom we worship as the Son of God, and the Savior
          of the world, has body, parts, and passions, and he is like his
          Father; he is the express image of his Father's person and the
          brightness of His glory, whom we also worship. They are
          individual personages organized as a pattern after which men were
          created; they have tabernacles, and are in every way personages
          and intelligent beings.
          Therefore, that something, or that nothing, that imaginary being,
          that idol that is recognised in the creeds of Christendom in
          general as a god without body, parts, or passions, has nothing to
          do whatever with the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, or with
          the Son of God that came in the meridian of time, who was
          crucified, died, and rose again from the dead, and ascended on
          high to lead captivity captive, and give gifts to men. Inasmuch
          as he and his Father are organised with body and parts, with
          limbs, joints, flesh, and bones, that are immortal and eternal,
          they have no part or lot, or communication whatever, with that
          imaginary being which is recognised in the principal creeds of
          Christendom as their God, viz., a god without body, parts, or
          passions. Therefore, in that sense, in the very foundation of
          their creeds they are idolators; and instead of saying that
          Mahometanism prevailed against Christianity, and that
          Christianity was in danger of being done away by its prevalence,
          we would rather say, that where Mahometanism prevailed, it taught
          and established one truth at least, viz., the true and living
          God, and so far as this went, it did preserve people from
          worshipping idols. And had the crescent waved on the tower of
          London, or on the church of St. Paul, instead of the cross, and
          had the Mahometan religion been enforced instead of the Roman
          religion that was enforced for a series of generations, and had
          tradition riveted what the sword enforced, then that nation and
          the surrounding nations would have been worshippers of one true
          God instead of idols; they would have recognized it in theory at
          least, whether they would have worshipped Him in spirit and in
          truth or not. But now they do not recognize Him in theory, for
          they acknowledge as their god an imaginary being without body,
          parts, or passions.
          Setting aside this one point, they acknowledge and worship
          innumerable idols, pictures, images, &c., amounting almost to an
          infinite number, in every place where Christianity has been
          blended with the civil power, and enforced and established by law
          under the one great standard called Catholic--imaginary deities
          that are the works of men's hands, and to which they actually and
          literally bow down. This may not be the case so fully in these
          United States, where there is a kind of balance of power, and
          religion, and population, and influences of various kinds acting
          as checks upon each other; but go to those countries where there
          are no such checks or balances of power; go to Chili, Spain, or
          any other of the states or nations where the Roman cross, instead
          of the crescent, or any other ensign, is the standard, where
          there are no Protestant influences and Protestant dissensions to
          interfere with the prevailing power, and, as a matter of course,
          all the subjects of that realm have by law one religion
          prescribed to them, supported and enforced by civil authority, to
          the prohibition of all others. In such countries, you can
          contemplate that religion in all its open and unveiled idolatry;
          it is there you will see more fully exhibited the practice of
          worshipping images, of bowing down to dumb idols in the shape of
          pictures, images, saint worship, angel worship, &c., &c.
          I have seen al this with mine eyes, and heard it with mine ears.
          They will pray to the Virgin Mary, so called, in the form of a
          painting, which they set up to be prayed to. They also set up
          other canonized saints in like manner, painted on canvas and
          other substances.
               But I will not confine this practice to those countries
          alone, but in a city of the United States I have beheld a public
          procession of a vast majority of the populace united in one grand
          bowery, extending around the public square, and pictures and
          images of saints were posted in the roads, and an extra bowery
          was prepared for each of those images or paintings, decorated in
          all the pomp and splendor the people could command, and while in
          procession they would kneel down in the dirty streets and public
          squares, though dressed in the richest silks and satins that
          money could purchase; persons so richly attired were bowing down
          on their knees, or prostrating themselves in the dirt and dust at
          every place where there was an image, and were devoutly offering
          up prayers.
          This is the idolatry that prevails more manifestly in the
          countries where religion is the law, but it also prevails right
          in our own country, because there is a liberty of conscience to
          worship what you please.
          Now, if we take Mahometanism during those dark ages, and the
          corruptions that are so universally prevalent over the earth, and
          the idolatrous systems of religion, falsely called Christianity,
          and weigh them in a balance; with all my education in favor of
          Christian nations and Christian powers, and Christian
          institutions, so called, with all my prejudices of early youth,
          and habits of thought and reading, my rational faculties would
          compel me to admit that the Mahometan history and Mahometan
          doctrine was a standard raised against the most corrupt and
          abominable idolatry that ever perverted our earth, found in the
          creeds and worship of Christians, falsely so named.
          It might not have been a very pure standard, for the fulness of
          the Gospel, with its Priesthood, ordinances, powers, and gifts
          were not there, because that pertained to another branch of
          Abraham's family.
          Ishmael and his descendants were blessed by the Lord, who said,
          "I will make of him a great nation, and kings shall come of him,
          and he shall have dominion;" yet there was one thing not said on
          the head of Ishmael. It was not said that in him should the elect
          seed be chosen, who should bear the keys of the eternal
          Priesthood, and salvation, in which all nations should be
          blessed: this was said on Isaac, the brother of Ishmael, the
          heir; and it was also said of Jacob and of Abraham; therefore,
          the blessings that were peculiar, that pertained to the fulness
          of the Gospel that pertained to the eternal Priesthood, that
          pertained to the coming of Christ, and to the things of his
          ministry, and to those that were called with the same calling,
          and in which all nations should be blessed and redeemed, could
          not be given to Ishmael and to his descendants, but they belonged
          by election to the chosen seed to whom the promises were made,
          viz., the children of Abraham through Isaac, and through Jacob;
          but the Lord said of Ishmael, "I will make of him a great nation,
          because he is thy son; I will bless him because he is thine, and
          kings shall come of him." So the Lord seems to have fulfilled,
          more or less, from those early days until the present, the
          promises that He made to the children of Abraham, that were not
          particularly designed to hold the keys of the Priesthood.
          All that a nation could have, without the keys of the everlasting
          Gospel, without the gifts and powers pertaining to those keys,
          and without the fulness of the Gospel, the people of the East
          seemed to have been blessed with, so far as the Lord saw fit to
          bestow upon them blessings during those dark ages. 
          A great portion of the oriental country has been preserved from
          the grossest idolatry, wickedness, confusion, bloodshed, murders,
          cruelty, and errors in religion that have overspread the rest of
          the world, under the name of Christianity, or mystery of
          An open defiance of God is no mystery; open drunkenness, and
          revelling debauchery, and all manner of wickedness and immorality
          professed by sinners who profess to be nothing else, are no
          mystery; they do not deceive anybody; but when all manner of
          wickedness, idolatry drunkenness, and corruption is cloaked under
          a sacred name, under an outward sanctity and holiness, and under
          as high and dignified an appellation as Christian, it is a
          mystery of iniquity; and that has overspread a great portion of
          the world, and has borne rule until the present day, sometimes
          under the name of Roman universality, sometimes under the name of
          the Greek Church, and at other times under various classes and
          Many that were honest have been deceived by this mystery of
          iniquity, who have esteemed things to be sacred, which were
          abominably corrupt; and corrupt superstitions have been revered
          because of the great names and sanctified professions that were
          attached to them.
          If such institutions actually professed wickedness, they would go
          for what they were worth; but when a thing professes to be holy,
          and takes the name of Christ as its founder, and the holy
          Prophets and Apostles, to carry out all manner of oppression, all
          manner of idolatry and idol worship, all manner of priestcraft
          and kingcraft, and more or less instigating division among
          nations and governments, all to carry out bloodshed, cruelty, the
          rack, the inquisition, and holding of men in bondage, ruling them
          with a rod of iron, it is a mystery of iniquity calculated to
          deceive millions. The Apostle John, speaking of this same power,
          says, "By thy sorceries were all nations deceived!!"
          The Mahometan operations, in the hands of the descendants of
          Abraham and Ishmael, seem to have warded off that deception and
          mystery of iniquity in some measure, so that it has not entirely
          overrun their country, morals, and institutions.
          Though Mahometan institutions are corrupt enough, and need
          reforming by the Gospel, I am inclined to think, upon the whole,
          leaving out the corruptions of men in high places among them,
          that they have better morals and better institutions than many
          Christian nations and in many localities there have been high
          standards of morals.
          There are, no doubt, sections of country, and different
          localities in Asia, where the people have not walked strictly
          according to the regulations and laws given by Mahomet, and
          observed by his true followers. 
          But returning to the general corruption that has prevailed
          nationally, politically, and religiously, under the name of
          Christianity, leaving out Christ and his Apostles, I do think
          there has been no idolatry in the world, under any form or
          system, that could surpass it. It is the mystery of iniquity the
          great whore of all the earth. It has brought the whole earth
          under a lasting curse, having departed from the laws of God,
          changed the ordinances, and broken the everlasting covenant, in
          consequence of which the earth is destined to be burned, and few
          men left.
          So far as that one point is concerned, of worshipping the one
          true God under the name of Mahometanism, together with many moral
          precepts, and in war only acting on the defensive, I think they
          have exceeded in righteousness and truthfulness of religion, the
          idolatrous and corrupt church that has borne the name of
          There is one thing for which I like Mahometanism better than the
          present Christianity of the world; if prisoners are taken by
          them, no matter of what country or religion, and they become
          lawful captives, doomed to slavery, according to their rules,
          they will take them from their labor, order them to wash their
          bodies, and put on clean clothes, give them plenty to eat to
          refresh them, until they have rested and have full power and
          vigor of both body and mind to investigate and study the
          Mahometan religion. If the captives embrace the true religion, as
          they call it, they are set free from slavery, and permitted to
          marry among them. But if the captives still reject the religion
          of the Mahometans, they are made to return to their slavery.
          I want to know where the Christian nation is that does this--that
          will take their lawful captive that may have some other religion,
          and set him free from servitude, and give him time to wash and
          clothe himself, and think, and investigate, when both body and
          mind are enjoying their full power, and if they embrace their
          religion, then permit them to become citizens.
          I will not detain you; I have been more lengthy now than I
          intended. We would do well to look into the bearings of the
          history of nations, and the dealings of God with them, as
          impartially as we can, at all times, and cull out all the good
          there has been, is, or may be, and acknowledge the hand of God in
          all things, in His dealings with the nations as well as in other
          things. I acknowledge His hand even in this Gentile reign, whose
          corruption I have been hinting at. It has had its day, which has
          been a long and dark one; the nations have groaned under its
          sway; all nations have felt its withering power; all nations have
          been deceived by its darkening and mysterious influences; they
          have groaned in ignorance and corruption under the hand of
          oppression, and tyranny, and wrong, until the head and heart are
          sick, and they are ready to wake up and seek something better.
          I acknowledge the hand of God in it; it was to have its day, that
          the nations might know fully, and experience the difference
          between light and darkness, mystery and truth, peace and war,
          liberty and oppression; between truth and falsehood, between the
          rule of Satan, of priestcraft and kingcraft, and the reign of the
          kingdom of righteousness; that they might have enough of their
          own way, and be filled with it until they would be glad to seek
          the Lord.
          That same God has promised His Apostles and Prophets a day when
          there should be an end of superstition, and ignorance, and
          falsehood, of priestcraft and kingcraft, and end of Gentile
          polity; that their fulness would come in, and the prophecies of
          the holy Prophets would be fulfilled, and the reign of iniquity
          would complete its time; and then what? A Chaos? No, but an
          organization, a kingdom, a government, a power which should stand
          for ever, and no more pass away; and what was that? Why, the God
          of heaven should set it up; suffice it to say, the kingdom of
          May the Lord bless you all. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, October 6, 1855
                           Brigham Young, October 6, 1855
            A Sermon by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 6, 1855.
          As we have assembled in the capacity of a Conference to attend to
          business, we should earnestly seek to enjoy the spirit of our
          calling. We are called to be Saints, and if we have the spirit of
          Saints we shall have the spirit of our calling, otherwise we
          certainly do not enjoy the privileges that the Lord designs we
          should. The Lord is ready and willing to give His Spirit to those
          who are honest before Him, and who seek earnestly to enjoy it.
          If Saints, assembled to worship the Lord and transact business
          pertaining to His kingdom, should not have the aid of His Spirit
          they would be likely to commit errors, it would be strange indeed
          if they did not, and to do that which they ought not, even in
          business transactions; they would fall short of accomplishing
          their own wishes, and of course far short of fulfilling the
          designs of heaven. We see many led astray, because they have not
          retained the spirit of Christ to guide them.
          When any of this people, who believe the Gospel, forsake the duty
          which they owe to God and His cause, they are at once surrounded
          by an influence which causes them to imbibe a dislike to Saints
          and to the conduct of Saints; they receive a false spirit, and
          then the Saints cannot do right in their eyes, the ministers of
          God cannot preach right nor act right, and soon they wish to
          leave the society of the Saints, and that too, as they suppose,
          with a sanctified heart and life. They wish to withdraw from
          this, as they believe, wicked people, fancying all to be wicked
          but themselves, and wish to separate themselves until the people
          are as holy as they flatter themselves that they are, when they
          calculate to return again. Others will lose the spirit of their
          calling, and realize that they have lost it; they are wicked, and
          know it, and will have more confidence in others than in
          themselves. But the self-righteous will go away and wait until we
          as a people are sanctified and able to endure their presence, and
          think that then they will, perhaps, gather among us again.
          People are liable in many ways to be led astray by the power of
          the adversary, for they do not fully understand that it is a hard
          matter for them to always distinguish the things of God from the
          things of the devil. There is but one way by which they can know
          the difference, and that is by the light of the spirit of
          revelation, even the spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ. Without
          this we are all liable to be led astray and forsake our brethren,
          forsake our covenants and the Church and kingdom of God on earth.
          Should the whole people neglect their duty and come short in
          performing the things required at their hands, lose the light of
          the Spirit of the Lord, the light of the spirit of revelation,
          they would not know the voice of the Good Shepherd from the voice
          of a stranger, they would not know the difference between a false
          teacher and a true one, for there are many spirits gone out into
          the world, and the false spirits are giving revelations as well
          as the Spirit of the Lord. This we are acquainted with; we know
          that there are many delusive spirits, and unless the Latter-day
          Saints live to their privileges, and enjoy the spirit of the holy
          Gospel, they cannot discern between those who serve God and those
          who serve Him not. Consequently, it becomes us, as Saints, to
          cleave to the Lord with all our hearts, and seek unto Him until
          we do enjoy the light of His Spirit, that we may discern between
          the righteous and the wicked, and understand the difference
          between false spirits and true. Then, when we see a presentation,
          we shall know whence it is, and understand whether it be of the
          Lord, or whether it is not of Him; but if the people are not
          endowed with the Holy Ghost they cannot tell, therefore it
          becomes us to have the Spirit of the Lord, not only in preaching
          and praying, but to enable us to reflect and judge, for the
          Saints are to judge in these matters. They are to judge not only
          men, they are to be judges not only in the capacity of a
          Conference to decide what shall be done, what course shall be
          pursued to further the kingdom of God, what business shall be
          transacted, and how it shall be transacted, and so on, but they
          will actually judge angels.
          We sit here as judges, and suppose that business which would
          prove injurious to this people should now be presented for them
          to decide upon, or suppose that the leaders of this people had
          forsaken the Lord and should introduce, through selfishness, that
          which would militate against the kingdom of God on the earth,
          that which would in the issue actually destroy this people, how
          are you going to detect the wrong and know it from the right? You
          cannot do it, unless you have the Spirit of the Lord. Do the
          people enjoy that Spirit? Yes, many of them do. Do they enjoy it
          in as great a degree as it is their privilege? A few of them do,
          still I think that the people in general might enjoy more of the
          Holy Spirit, more of the nature and essence of the Deity, than
          they do. I know that they have their trials, I know they have the
          world to grapple with, and are tempted, and I know what they have
          to war against.
          But let us ask ourselves individually whether we fight this
          warfare to such a degree that we do overcome in every instance?
          In every contest do we come off victorious? Here we have to do
          with our passions; here is fallen nature, that we can never get
          rid of until we lie down in the grave, it is sown in the flesh
          and will remain there, but it is our privilege to overcome that,
          and bring it under subjection in our reflections, in our
          meditations, and in all the labor that we perform, though we may
          be tried, tempted, and buffeted by Satan. It is our privilege to
          have power to rule, govern, and bring under subjection even our
          momentary passions; yes, it is our privilege so to live and
          overcome them that we never would have a temptation to think
          evil, or at least would never speak before we took time to think,
          but all would be in subjection to the law of Christ. Do we live
          up to this privilege?
          People may ask, are we not good Saints? Yes, I can say that this
          people are a good people, and they wish to be Saints, and many of
          them strive to be Saints, and many of them are Saints. I realize
          the weaknesses of men; I am not ignorant of my own weaknesses,
          and this is where I learn every body else, their dispositions and
          the operations of the spirit upon the inhabitants of the earth;
          to learn mankind is learn myself.
          This is a good people, they are a righteous people; yet there are
          some who are filled with folly, there are some who are inclined
          to do wickedly and seem to love wickedness; there are some who
          are filled with idolatry, and it seems as though it were
          impossible for them to overcome the spirit of the world, to keep
          from loving it and from cleaving to it and to the things of the
          world. I will appeal to the people as judges--are you capable of
          judging in matters pertaining to the kingdom of God on earth,
          unless you have the Spirit of truth within you?
          Some may say, "Brethren, you who lead the Church, we have all
          confidence in you, we are not in the least afraid but what
          everything will go right under your superintendence; all the
          business matters will be transacted right; and if brother Brigham
          is satisfied with it, I am." I do not wish any Latter-day Saint
          in this world, nor in heaven, to be satisfied with anything I do,
          unless the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, the spirit of
          revelation, makes them satisfied. I wish them to know for
          themselves and understand for themselves, for this would
          strengthen the faith that is within them. Suppose that the people
          were heedless, that they manifested no concern with regard to the
          things of the kingdom of God, but threw the whole burden upon the
          leaders of the people, saying, "If the brethren who take charge
          of matters are satisfied, we are," this is not pleasing in the
          sight of the Lord.
          Every man and woman in this kingdom ought to be satisfied with
          what we do, but they never should be satisfied without asking the
          Father, in the name of Jesus Christ, whether what we do is right.
          When you are inspired by the Holy Ghost you can understandingly
          say, that you are satisfied; and that is the only power that
          should cause you to exclaim that you are satisfied, for without
          that you do not know whether you should be satisfied or not. You
          may say that you are satisfied and believe that all is right, and
          your confidence may be almost unbounded in the authorities of the
          Church of Jesus Christ, but if you asked God, in the name of
          Jesus, and received knowledge for yourself, through the Holy
          Spirit, would it not strengthen your faith? It would. A little
          faith will perform little works; that is good logic. Jesus says,
          "If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto
          this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove;
          and nothing shall be impossible unto you."
          A grain of mustard seed is very small; nevertheless if you had
          faith as a grain of mustard seed, and should say unto this
          mountain, "Remove hence to yonder place, it would be done; or to
          that sycamore tree, "Be thou planted in the sea;" or to the sick,
          "Be ye healed;" or to the devils, "Be ye cast out; it would be
          Suppose that I had faith like a grain of mustard seed, and could
          do the things which Christ has said are possible to be done
          through that faith, and that another man on the continent of Asia
          had the same faith, we could not accomplish much because but two
          would have all the power of Satan to combat. Do you suppose that
          Jesus Christ healed every person that was sick, or that all the
          devils were cast out in the country where he sojourned? I do not.
          Working miracles, healing the sick, raising the dead, and the
          like, were almost as rare in his day as in this our day. Once in
          a while the people would have faith in his power, and what is
          called a miracle would be performed, but the sick, the blind, the
          deaf and dumb, the crazy, and those possessed with different
          kinds of devils were around him, and only now and then could his
          faith have power to take effect, on account of the want of faith
          in the individuals.
          Many suppose that in the days of the Savior no person was sick,
          in the vicinity of his labors, but what was healed; this is a
          mistake, for it was only occasionally that a case of healing a
          sick person or casting out a devil occurred. But again, suppose
          that two-thirds of the inhabitants of Jerusalem and the regions
          round about had actually possessed like faith in the Savior that
          a few did, then it is very probable that all the sick would have
          been healed and the devils cast out, for there would have been a
          predominance of a good power over the evil influences.
          Let two persons be on the continent of America, having faith like
          a grain of mustard seed, and let one of them be situated on the
          Atlantic and the other on the Pacific coast, and most of the sick
          would remain sick around them, the dying would die, and those
          possessed of devils would continue to be tormented, though once
          in a while a sick person might be healed, or a blind person be
          made to see. Now let each one of those individuals have another
          person of like faith added to him, and they will do as much again
          work; them let there be four persons in the east and four in the
          west, all possessing faith like a grain of mustard seed, and
          there will be four times as much done as when there was but one
          in each place; and thus go on increasing their number in this
          ratio until, by and bye, all the Latter-day Saints have faith
          like a grain of mustard seed, and where would there be place for
          devils? Not in these mountains, for they would all be cast out.
          Do you not perceive that that would be a great help to us?
          If I had power of myself to heal the sick, which I do not profess
          to have, or to cast out devils, which power I have not got,
          though if the Lord sees fit to cast them out through my command
          it is all right--still if I had that power, and there was no
          other person to help me, the people would do as they do now, they
          would hunt me almost to death, saying, "Won't you lay hands on
          this sick person? Won't you go to my house over yonder?" and so
          on. I am sent for continually, though I only go occasionally,
          because it is the privilege of every father, who is an Elder in
          Israel, to have faith to heal his family, just as much so as it
          is my privilege to have faith to heal my family; and if he does
          not do it he is not living up to his privilege. It is just as
          reasonable for him to ask me to cut his wood and maintain his
          family, for if he had faith himself he would save me the trouble
          of leaving other duties to attend to his request.
                 Let this faith be distributed and it makes all things
          easy, but put one or two dozen men to hauling a wagon containing
          a hundred tons' weight, and the labor is very heavy, whereas if
          the whole of the Latter-day Saints would put their shoulder to
          the load it would be moved easily. It is with the mental powers
          as it is with the physical, and that is why I wish you to
          consider the matter, and why I lay those things before you. Let
          the Latter-day Saints have faith and works, and let them forsake
          their covetousness and cleave unto righteousness.
          I have given you a short discourse upon faith and practical
          religion, and now I say to the Elders of Israel, to the Bishops
          of the different wards, and to the Presidents of the different
          Branches, if there is any business you wish to bring before this
          Conference, pertaining to fellowship and the conduct of
          individuals, you can have the privilege. We were accustomed, some
          years ago, to attend to such business before our General
          Conference, and it is our privilege to do so again, if we choose,
          or if there is any occasion.
          In all High Councils, in Bishops' Courts, and in all other
          departments for transacting our business, the Church and kingdom
          of God, with the Lord Almighty at the head, will cause every man
          to exhibit the feelings of his heart, for you recollect it is
          written that in the last days the Lord will reveal the secrets of
          the hearts of the children of men.
          Does not the Gospel do that? It does; it causes men and women to
          reveal that which would have slept in their dispositions until
          they dropped into their graves. The plan by which the Lord leads
          this people makes them reveal their thoughts and intents, and
          brings out every trait of disposition lurking in their
          organizations. Is this right? It is. How are you going to correct
          a man's faults, by hiding them and never speaking of them, by
          covering up every fault you see in your brother, or by saying,
          "O, do not say a word about his faults, we know that he lies, but
          it will not do to say a word about it, for it would be awful to
          reveal such a fact to the people?" That is the policy of the
          world and of the devil, but is it the way that the Lord will do
          with the people in the latter-days? It is not.
          This is a matter that seems to be but little understood by some
          of the Latter-day Saints, it may be understood by a portion of
          them, but others do not understand it. Every fault that a person
          has will be made manifest, that it may be corrected by the Gospel
          of salvation, by the laws of the Holy Priesthood.
          Suppose that a man lies, and you dare not tell of it; "Very
          well," says the man, "I am secure, I can lie as much as I
          please." He is inclined to lie, and if we dare not chastise him
          about it he takes shelter under that pavilion, cloaks himself
          with the charity of his brethren, and continues to lie. By and
          bye he will steal a little, and perhaps one or two of his
          brethren know about it, but they say, "We must cover up this
          fault with the cloak of charity." He continues to lie and to
          steal, and we continue to hide his faults; where will it lead
          that person to? Where will he end his career? Nowhere but in
          What shall we do with such men? Shall we reveal their faults?
          Yes, whenever we deem it right and proper. I know it is hard to
          receive chastisement, for no chastisement is joyous, but grievous
          at the time it is given; but if a person will receive
          chastisement and pray for the Holy Spirit to rest upon him, that
          he may have the Spirit of truth in his heart, and cleave to that
          which is pleasing to the Lord, the Lord will give him grace to
          bear the chastisement, and he will submit to and receive it,
          knowing that it is for his good. He will endure it patiently,
          and, by and bye, he will get over it, and see that he has been
          chastised for his faults, and will banish the evil, and the
          chastisement will yield to him the peaceable fruits of
          righteousness, because he exercises himself profitably therein.
          In this way chastisement is a benefit to any person. Grant that I
          have a fault, and wish it concealed, would I not be likely to
          hide it? And if the Lord would not reveal it I might cling to it,
          if I had not the spirit of revelation to discern my fault and its
          consequences. Without the influence of the Spirit of the Lord, I
          am just as liable to lie and abide in false principles, false
          notions, and unrighteous actions as true ones. It is so with you.
          If your faults are not made known to you, how can you refrain
          from them and overcome them? You cannot. But if your faults are
          made manifest, you have the privilege of forsaking them and
          cleaving unto that which is good. The design of the Gospel is to
          reveal the secrets of the hearts of the children of men.
          When men intimate to me, whether in public or in private, that
          their faults must not be spoken of, I do not know how
          worldly-minded men feel in similar cases, but like Elijah, when
          he mocked the priests of Baal, I feel to laugh and make derision
          of such men.
          Do you suppose that I will thus far bow down to any man in this
          Territory, or on the earth? Do you suppose that I will suffer
          myself to be so muzzled that I cannot reveal the faults of the
          people when wisdom dictates me to do it?
          I fear not the wicked half so much as I would a mosquito in my
          bedroom at night, for he would keep me from sleeping, but for the
          unrighteous, those who will act the villain and conduct
          themselves worse than the devil, to insinuate that I have not the
          privilege of speaking of their faults makes me feel like laughing
          at their folly. I will speak of men's faults when and where I
          please, and what are you going to do about it?
          Do you know that that very principle caused the death of all the
          Prophets, from the days of Adam until now? Let a Prophet arise
          upon the earth, and never reveal the evils of men, and do you
          suppose that the wicked would desire to kill him? No, for he
          would cease to be a Prophet of the Lord, and they would invite
          him to their feasts, and hail him as a friend and brother. Why?
          Because it would be impossible for him to be anything but one of
          them. It is impossible for a Prophet of Christ to live in an
          adulterous generation without speaking of the wickedness of the
          people, without revealing their faults and their failings, and
          there is nothing short of death that will stay him from it, for a
          Prophet of God will do as he pleases.
          I have been preached to, pleaded with, and written to, to be
          careful how I speak about men's faults, more so than ever Joseph
          Smith was in his life time; every week or two I receive a letter
          of instruction, warning me to be careful of this or that man's
          character. Did you ever have the Spirit of the Lord, so that you
          have felt full of joy, and like jumping up and shouting
          hallelujah? I feel in that way when such epistles come to me; I
          feel like saying, "I ask no odds of you, nor of all your clan
          this side of hell."
          I have wise brethren around me who will sometimes say, "Don't
          speak so and so, be very careful, now do be cautions;" and I have
          been written to from the east; I have package after package of
          letters, yes, a wheel-barrow load of them, saying, "O, brother
          Brigham, I would beseech and pray and plead with you, if I only
          dare, to be careful how you speak. Would not this or that course
          be better than for you to get up in the stand, and tell the
          Gentiles what they are? Would it not be better to keep this to
          Do you know how I feel when I get such communications? I will
          tell you, I feel just like rubbing their noses with them. If I am
          not to have the privilege of speaking of Saint and sinner when I
          please, tie up my mouth and let me go to the grave, for my work
          would be done. 
          It was for this that they killed Joseph and Hyrum, it is for this
          that they wish to kill me and my brethren; we know their
          iniquity, and we will tell of it when the Spirit dictates, or
          talk about this, that, or the other person and conduct at the
          proper time.
          There are people in our midst who grunt at this course, and at
          the same time have evils that I think are hardly worth notice,
          for I do not think that such persons will be good for anything
          even should they happen to get into the kingdom of heaven, though
          I suppose they are good in their place if we can find out where
          it is, but as yet I am ignorant of it; I presume that the Lord
          knows where it is, but I do not. I wish to say to the Elders of
          Israel, to all people, I shall tell you of your iniquity and talk
          about you just as I please, and when you feel like killing me for
          so doing, as some of the people did who called themselves
          brethren in the days of Joseph Smith, look out for yourselves,
          for false brethren were the cause of Joseph's death, and I am not
          a very righteous man. I have told the Latter-day Saints from the
          beginning that I do not profess much righteousness, but I profess
          to know the will of God concerning you, and I have boldness
          enough to tell it to you, fearless of your wrath, and I expect
          that it is on this account that the Lord has called me to occupy
          the place I do; I feel as independent as an angel. 
          Some of you have been brought before the High Council, charged
          with this fault and with that, and you say it is too much for
          you, that you cannot bear it. But you have got to bear it, and if
          you will not, make up your minds to go to hell at once and have
          done with it. If you wish to be Saints you must have your evils
          taken away and your iniquities exposed, this must be done if you
          remain in the kingdom of God. If you do wrong, and it is made
          manifest before the High Council, don't grunt about it, nor whine
          about your loving, precious character, but consider that you have
          none; that is the best way to get along with it. Myriads have
          scandalized me since I have been in this Church, and I have been
          asked, "Brother Brigham, are you going to bear this? Do you not
          know that such and such persons are scandalizing your character?"
          Said I, "I do not know that I have any character, I have never
          stopped to inquire whether I have one or not." It is for me to
          pursue a course that will build up the kingdom of God on the
          earth, and you may take my character to be what you please, I
          care not what you do with it, so you but keep your hands off from
          If you are brought before the High Council, or before a Bishop's
          court, and it is proven before either of those tribunals that you
          are covetous, don't fly in a passion and become so excited that
          you are ready to burst. I may see fit to expose some men who have
          not paid their tithing; now if you are going to get nervous about
          it and are afraid of bursting, let me know, and we will slip and
          egg shell over you and your precious characters. What precious
          characters some of you had in Wales, in England, in Scotland, and
          perhaps in Ireland.
          Do not be scared if it is proven against some, before the
          Bishop's court, that you did steal the poles from your neighbor's
          garden fence. If you did, it would be far better for you to get
          right up and own it, for you have in reality lost your character
          before God, angels, and men, and then refrain from such evils and
          try to establish a good character. It would be better for you to
          do that, than to become angry when your faults are made manifest.
          If it is proven before the High Council that you did steal a beef
          creature, don't get angry, but rise up and acknowledge that you
          did steal it.
          If it is proven that you have been to some person's wood pile and
          stolen wood, don't be frightened, for if you will steal, it must
          be made manifest. Some one may say, "Why I did not think Saints
          were guilty of such deeds!" Nor I either. Such crimes are
          committed by people who gather with the Saints, to try them, to
          afflict and annoy them, and drive them to their duty. Do you not
          suppose that it is necessary to have devils mixed up with us, to
          make Saints of us? We are as yet obliged to have devils in our
          community, we could not build up the kingdom without them. Many
          of you know that you cannot get your endowment without the
          devil's being present; indeed we cannot make rapid progress
          without the devils. I know that it frightens the righteous
          sectarian world to think that we have so many devils with us, so
          many poor, miserable curses. Bless your souls, we could not
          prosper in the kingdom of God without them. We must have those
          amongst us who will steal our fence poles, who will go and steal
          hay from their neighbor's hay stack, or go into his corn field to
          steal corn, and leave the fence down; nearly every ax that is
          dropped in the kanyon must be picked up by them, and the scores
          of lost watches, gold rings, breast pins, &c., must get into
          their hands, though they will not wear them in your sight. It is
          essentially necessary to have such characters here.
          After we had given the brethren such a scouring two or three
          months ago, about returning lost property when found, one or two
          men brought in two or three rusty nails of no value, which they
          had picked up; this was tantamount to saying to brother Sprague,
          "If we had found your purse, or if we had found Brigham's purse,
          we would see you in hell before we would return it." We wish to
          impress upon you the necessity of your bringing the ax you find,
          the hay fork, or any other lost property which you find, to the
          person who is appointed to take charge of such property, that the
          owners may again possess it. But if you should pick up a piece of
          rotten wood, and bring it to brother Brigham, or Dr. Sprague,
          with a show of honesty, and in derision of the counsel you have
          received, it would be like saying, "If we could find or steal
          your purses, you should never see them again. We are poor,
          miserable devils, and mean to live here by stealing from the
          Saints, and you cannot help yourselves."
          Live here then, you poor, miserable curses, until the time of
          retribution, when your heads will have to be severed from your
          bodies. Just let the Lord Almighty say, "Lay judgment to the line
          and righteousness to the plummet," and the time of thieves is
          short in this community. What do you suppose they would say in
          old Massachusetts, should they hear that the Latter-day Saints
          had received a revelation or commandment to lay "judgment to the
          line and righteousness to the plummet?" What would they say in
          old Connecticut? They would raise a universal howl of, "How
          wicked those Mormons are; they are killing the evil doers who are
          among them; why I hear that they kill the wicked away up yonder
          in Utah." They do no kill anybody down there, do they?
          As for the inhabitants of the earth, who know anything about the
          "Mormons," having power to utter worse epithets against us than
          they do, they have to get more knowledge in order to do it; and
          as for those enemies who have been in our midst, feeling any
          worse than they do, they have first to know more; they are as
          full of bad feeling now as they can hold without bursting. What
          do I care for the wrath of man? No more than I do for the
          chickens that run in my dooryard. I am here to teach the ways of
          the Lord, and lead men to life everlasting, but if they have not
          a mind to go there, I wish them to keep out of my path.
          I want the Elders of Israel to understand that if they are
          exposed in their stealing, lying, deceiving, wickedness, and
          covetousness, which is idolatry, they must not fly in a passion
          about it, for we calculate to expose you, from time to time, as
          we please, when we can get time to notice you.
          During this Conference, I do not want to think where the
          "Mormons" have been, and how they have been treated, but I want
          to think of matters that will make my heart light, like the roe
          on the mountains--to reflect that the Lord Almighty has given me
          my firth on the land where He raised up a Prophet, and revealed
          the everlasting Gospel through him, and that I had the privilege
          of hearing it--of knowing and understanding it--of embracing and
          enjoying it. I feel like shouting hallelujah, all the time, when
          I think that I ever knew Joseph Smith, the Prophet whom the Lord
          raised up and ordained, and to whom He gave keys and power to
          build up the kingdom of God on earth and sustain it. These keys
          are committed to this people, and we have power to continue the
          work that Joseph commenced, until everything is prepared for the
          coming of the Son of Man. This is the business of the Latter-day
          Saints, and it is all the business we have on hand. When we come
          to worldly affairs, as they are called, they can be done in
          stormy weather, if we attend to the kingdom of God in fair
          May God bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, July 13, 1855
                            Brigham Young, July 13, 1855
                           FOR SACRED THINGS--REFORMATION.
             Discourses by Presidents B. Young, H. C. Kimball, and J. M.
          and Elder E. T. Benson, Delivered July 13, 1855, at a Conference
                         held at Provo City, Utah Territory.
          PRES. B. YOUNG--As the people have now begun to assemble, I take
          the liberty of making a few remarks. I request those who profess
          to be Saints to exercise faith, and to endeavor to realize that
          the worship of God is sacred, and beneficial to His people. It is
          true that we have much to do of a temporal nature, as it is
          termed; many duties pertaining to daily business and the affairs
          of this life devolve upon us.
          This is necessarily the case, for if we are to build up the
          kingdom of God, or establish Zion upon the earth, we have to
          labor with our hands, plan with our minds, and devise ways and
          means to accomplish that object.
          There is a time for all these duties, and there is also a time to
          serve the Lord by praying, preaching, singing, meditating,
          watching, and fasting. Inasmuch as there is a time for all
          things, and as this is the time that we have unitedly set apart
          for the express purpose of worshipping the Lord, and of enjoying
          His Holy Spirit by calling in our reflections pertaining to
          earthly things and objects, that we may attend more immediately
          to a deep reflection and contemplation of heavenly things, it is
          necessary for these my brethren, who have accompanied me to this
          place, to bring their thoughts to bear upon the things that are
          present, and while we are here, to let Great Salt Lake City
          remain where it is--don't bring it here.
          Those who have left their families at home, and are away from
          their houses, cattle, fields, flocks, herds, and other
          possessions, and also all who have assembled from the different
          settlements in this county, one and all, let all your affairs,
          those that you were obliged to leave at home, stay where they
          are, and you stay here and worship the Lord.
          In this way every person who has assembled here can feel to leave
          their affairs and effects where they belong, and bring their
          minds to bear upon the spiritual things of the kingdom of God.
          Then they can have their minds enlightened by the Holy Spirit,
          and understand that which will make them rejoice.
          If those are our feelings and determinations, the candle of the
          Lord will be lighted within our hearts, but if we keep our minds
          constantly upon our families and effects, we shall be but little
          benefitted by coming here; this is true in regard to each one of
          Where our hearts are, there our thoughts will be: and if our
          thoughts are bound up in our earthly possessions, we had better
          remain at home and attend to what we have most set our affections
          upon, and not pretend to try to obtain happiness from any other
          There is a time for all things, and this is the time for meeting
          according to appointment. I am frequently requested to come out
          and hold meetings among the brethren, but I do not recollect that
          we have at any time appointed a three days' meeting here, though
          we have previously been here and held one during two days. Much
          instruction has to be given to enable us to overcome our
          passions, and to govern and control our feelings and disposition.
          Those Elders of Israel who have travelled and preached much have
          had a good opportunity for experience, and have learned that they
          cannot, figuratively speaking, take their families, friends, and
          goods with them, or if they did, they accomplished but little
          Those who go out to preach the Gospel and at the same time say,
          "My poor wife and my poor children; and I shall be glad when my
          mission is out," seldom do much good.
          I think that the help mate was designed to take care of the
          children, house, and gardens, and see, as far as possible, that
          all is cared for and preserved, as they anciently did. Some went
          out to war, but they must always leave a few at home to stay with
          the goods, or whatever they had to be taken care of.
          Elders who have had an experience in this matter know whether
          they carried their families in their feelings, or not; but it is
          our privilege to train our feelings and dispositions, and to
          bring all into subjection to the dictates of wisdom, even that
          wisdom which proceedeth from our God.
          When an Elder goes out to preach he ought not to let his mind be
          filled with care for his family, only when he is praying about
          them; and if they have lived by faith, all right; and if they
          have died during his absence, all right; they are the Lord's; and
          say, "that He gave them to me, it is all right; at the same time
          I would like to have them, but blessed be the name of the Lord."
          An elder has possessions great or small, much or little, and
          instead of carrying those possessions in his feelings he ought to
          leave them, and say that they are the Lord's, and say, "I give my
          spirit and body and what is committed into my hands, I am only a
          steward over it; I yield its care to Him, since He sends me from
          my home so that I cannot directly look after it." That man can go
          as free as the air, and will feel that he has in his possession
          the Spirit of the Lord, which should be considered of paramount
          When people assemble to worship they should leave their worldly
          cares where they belong, then their minds are in a proper
          condition to worship the Lord, to call upon Him in the name of
          Jesus, and to get His Holy Spirit, that they may hear and
          understand things as they are in eternity, and know how to
          comprehend the providences of our God. This is the time for their
          minds to be open, to behold the invisible things of God, that He
          reveals by His Spirit.
          Again, suppose a family wish to assemble for prayer, what would
          be orderly and proper? For the head of the family to call
          together his wife, or wives, and children, except the children
          who are too small to be kept quiet, and when he prays aloud, all
          present, who are old enough to understand, should mentally repeat
          the words as they fall from his lips; and why so? That all may be
          If the people will ask in faith, they will receive, and let all
          mentally ask precisely as does the one who is spokesman. Let all
          leave the cares of their work behind them; let the kitchens take
          care of themselves, and let the barns, the flocks and herds take
          care of themselves, and if they are destroyed while you are
          praying, be able to freely say, "Go, they are the Lord's; He gave
          them to me, and I will worship Him; I will assemble my family and
          call upon the name of my God."
          By leaving business and the cares thereof where they belong, and
          attending strictly to worship in its season, if not at first, you
          soon will be united, and be able to bring every evil principle
          into subjection. If all are bound up in this manner, don't you
          see that it will make a mighty cord of faith?
          I will now ask this congregation, how many of you thought of
          mentally repeating my prayer as the words came to your ears? Did
          you realize that the order of prayer required you to mentally
          follow the words of the person who was praying? With us every one
          should mentally repeat the same words and ask for the same things
          as does the one who leads vocally, and let all say, amen. There
          are times and places when all should vocally repeat the words
          spoken, but in our prayer meetings and in our family circles let
          every heart be united with the one who takes the lead by being
          mouth before the Lord, and let every person mentally repeat the
          prayers, and all unite in whatever is asked for, and the Lord
          will not withhold, but will give to such persons the things which
          they ask for and rightly need.
          In some denominations the hearers are accustomed to cry out,
          "Amen, amen, amen, hallelujah, praise the Lord," &c., during the
          prayer service, and immediately let their minds wander to the
          ends of the earth. That is not the right way to pray, but let
          every one throw off care for their effects, for the Lord knows
          all about them; He protects them while we are with them; and He
          is equally able to protect them while we are absent; therefore,
          while engaged in worshipping Him, let every heart be concentrated
          upon the subject before them. If this congregation will take this
          course, I promise them that they will go to their dwellings
          satisfied that the Almighty has been with us to strengthen us;
          but if our minds are like the fool's eyes, we shall be profited
          but little.
          There are several here who will address you, and suppose that
          they should chastise us a little, do we not deserve it? Still,
          perhaps some will complain of the speaker for chastising them,
          when perhaps the first sentences which meet their eyes upon
          opening the Bible, will convey the idea that every son and
          daughter whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth, but those who are
          not chastened are bastards and not sons.
          Says one, "I am willing to be chastened, but I am not willing to
          have that brother who has just come from England, or some other
          country, chasten me, but if some one high in authority should do
          it, I would kiss the rod and reverence the hand that gave it;"
          but the man who will only receive chastening from the Lord
          Himself is not in a proper state of mind before Him.
          The Latter-day Saints have been chastened much and often. Many in
          this congregation have had their corn and wheat stacks burned in
          consequence of their religion, and have often been called to part
          with their fathers and mothers, their wives and children, in
          consequence of their religion. They have been chastened here and
          there, and perhaps some may think we are being chastened now by
          the drought and insects. I am willing to take it as a
          chastisement, and to learn that wisdom and knowledge which I had
          not before it happened; and if every man could realize and
          understand it, they would receive it as a prize and as lesson
          that would qualify them for future duties. Though our
          chastisements are often hard to be borne, those who bear them
          patiently, willingly, and submissively, will find that they yield
          the Gospel fruits of righteousness insomuch that they will know
          how to be Saints indeed.
          Chastisement often comes upon the Saints of God on account of the
          wicked, and that also will redound to the benefit of the humble
          and faithful. If we receive chastisement for our sins, it will
          teach us to forsake our sins, and become righteous, for we
          receive chastisement because there is wickedness among us, and it
          is permitted to come to prevent our turning from the path of
          duty, and is always designed for our good. In all these things we
          have to acknowledge the hand of the Lord, and to be passive the
          things of His kingdom, that we may govern and control natural
          things, and all those with whom we have to do, that those we
          preside over may become eternal heirs of the celestial kingdom of
          our God.
          It seems to be hard work for me to speak here this morning, and I
          will give way and let the brethren occupy the remaining time this
          forenoon. The ideas that I have laid before you, if you think of
          them and lay them to heart, will do you good; and in our
          protracted meeting we may be spiritually benefited, and receive
          joy and satisfaction. I feel to bless you all the time, and pray
          that we may be prepared to build up Zion and to inherit the
          fulness of the glory of God on the earth; this is my prayer
          continually. May the Lord bless you. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, July 13, 1855
                           Heber C. Kimball, July 13, 1855
                           FOR SACRED THINGS--REFORMATION.
             Discourses by Presidents B. Young, H. C. Kimball, and J. M.
          and Elder E. T. Benson, Delivered July 13, 1855, at a Conference
                         held at Provo City, Utah Territory.
          PRES. H. C. KIMBALL-- We have heard what has been said by our
          President, and in my feelings, though I may not always manifest
          it, I am one with him in all my acts. Brethren and sisters,
          please to give me your attention, and let your property take care
          of itself; that is according to the instruction we have had
          Brother Brigham is the President of the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, and it is our duty to give strict heed to his
          counsels and instructions. This is one thing which this people,
          universally, individually, and collectively, have got to implant
          in their minds, and unless you get this lesson firmly settled in
          your minds, he can never be of so much benefit to you as he
          otherwise could, for as sure as you live and dwell here upon this
          earth, wherever you are inclined to stop, to wait or to lie down,
          he will leave you there; yes, he will leave you in that very
          spot, and attend to some more important business, and in some
          future day he, or some other one, will have to take you and teach
          you the first principles of the doctrine of Christ, and again try
          to lead you into the kingdom of God. He will not always dwell
          here in the flesh, that is, in this mortal body.
          I look at this people in the north and in the south, and watch
          their progress in raising grain, building houses, &c., and I am
          pleased to see what I behold; and although I do not see such
          progress as there might be, still I see a great deal, and our
          extension and progress are far beyond that of the world, under
          like circumstances. But we do not make the progress that we
          would, if we strictly listened to the word of God, as it proceeds
          from our President, our leader and Prophet.
          Do we bring about that amount of restitution that we might? I
          say, no. We should have the faith that we would have if we all
          carefully listened to the instructions that have been already
          given us this day. They are of great importance to all, and are
          as necessary to our salvation as baptism for the remission of
          sins, or any other life giving principle, they are necessary in
          order that we may become one.
          How can we become one upon any other principle? It is impossible
          to be of one heart and one mind, except we observe all the
          counsel given from time to time.
          I know it has been a practice with me, since I came to a
          knowledge of the truth and of prayer, when kneeling with my
          brethren, to pray for the things which they pray for; and we pray
          continually, "Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name,
          thy kingdom come here on earth, and thy will be done as it is in
          heaven." Don't you all desire this? Well, you may continue to
          desire from this time to the day of your death, and you never
          will be gratified, except you individually and collectively
          practise the things you are taught, and are one.
          You have got to be one in all things. Are we all one in this
          community? Is that the case in this place? You have not
          progressed as much as those around you, nor as much as you would
          have done if you had been diligent all the time, for then your
          station and faith, your works before God, and power with Him
          would have been far greater than they now are.
          We have surpassed the world now; but if we were, and always had
          been, of one heart and one mind in all our efforts to advance the
          interest of the work of the Lord, we should have been far ahead
          of what we are now, and could put to defiance death, hell, and
          the devil, and all who are in opposition to this work; but we
          cannot now do all that we could if we had kept all the
          commandments of the Lord, and been of one heart and one mind.
          What was there in the prayer this morning, but what every one of
          you desired more than gold, silver, and precious stones? Then
          pray for those things, and practise accordingly.
          As for the kingdom to come, and the will of God being done upon
          the earth as it is done in heaven, it never will, except we
          practise and carry out the purpose of the Almighty in our daily
          walk and conversation, and seek to be of one heart and of one
          mind, and to do unto others as we wish them to do unto us.
          I wish that all who call themselves Saints would rise and shine,
          for the light and glory of God are come upon us, therefore let us
          rise up and keep His commandments, and serve Him and glorify His
          As for any man's going into the celestial glory, or entering
          through the straight gate into the celestial world, there never
          will a man or woman go there, except they obey the celestial law
          which gives them that privilege. I know it is the case, but some
          think that if brother Brigham, brother Heber, and others go
          there, they will take the rest with them, but I can tell you that
          they will not do it, for justice stands at the door and demands
          its claims, and though mercy stands pleading on the other side it
          cannot rob justice, for justice must have its demands, and will
          claim that which is its won, and mercy cannot claim that which is
          not its own, and neither can rob the other. By observing justice
          and mercy we can enter through the gates into the city and obtain
          that glory which we are all anticipating.
          Brethren and sisters, reflect where we are, what we are, and what
          we are doing; how careless and unconcerned some of us often are
          in relation to those things that we are counselled to do.
          I was noticing this morning that the public square and the public
          buildings are not where brother Brigham first stuck the stake,
          no, nor within half a mile of that spot. I am only touching upon
          this one thing to show you how it has been, not to hurt your
          feelings: and this and like conduct is the reason why there has
          not been more improvement, and why the Indians burn your wood and
          kill your cattle and horses, and, in short, is the reason why
          they do this, that, and a thousand other disagreeable things.
          Perhaps there is not a perfect unity of faith and feeling towards
          those appointed to preside in this place. Should any dissension
          exist here among this little flock of sheep? No. 
          Whoever is guided by those whom God appoints is the wisest man,
          although he may appear to be one of the most simple that can be
          found. Do you not believe that? I know it, for, although he may
          be rather rough in external appearance, he will be filled with
          wisdom, inasmuch as he abides the counsel of those placed over
          him, for it is God who does the work, and He can make a wise man
          out of one who is very simple in the eyes of the world.
          I know some think that they accomplish the work, but it is God
          that does it. When I place myself passively, like a violin in the
          hands of a performer, and let the Almighty lay His bow upon me,
          can He play a good tune upon a rusty fiddle? I have seen and
          heard a good musician produce some of the best music on an old
          rusty instrument. It does not matter if you hold out till your
          hair is as thin as mine, you will have to acknowledge that it is
          God who gives us wisdom and furnishes us unto good works.
          When a man is appointed by the proper authorities and set apart
          to preside, uphold and sustain that man, for he has power with
          God; and God will give him revelation for your guidance in the
          way of all truth, and he will know the mind of the Lord by day
          and by night.
          The difficulty is that no man can be appointed to an office here,
          nor in Springville, nor in Peteetneet, nor any other place, but
          what there is some man whom many of the people think is a little
          smarter, and they think that they know a little better than the
          one who is appointed. Notwithstanding all the instructions that
          President Brigham Young has given to this people, many still
          think that they know better than he does, and they do not like
          his counsel, but reject it and treat it as the words of some
          wicked man.
               These feelings exist, and I do wish that this people were of
          one heart and of one mind. You cannot and will not listen to the
          instructions of those placed to counsel you, until you are more
          united; but when you are united you will listen to the words and
          counsels of those placed here to counsel and govern you, as
          strictly as if President Young was constantly here.
          When people will not listen to the instructions of their
          President, do you suppose they would listen to the instruction of
          the Lord Himself, if He were here? No, they would not. Do many of
          you believe that this is brother Brigham? If you do, you do not
          believe that his words are all for your good, and are those which
          are given to him for your salvation.
          You believe that Joseph was a Prophet, but many could not believe
          even this when he was alive, but now that he is dead they can
          believe it. Jesus was a Prophet, though few believed so when he
          was upon the earth, but when he left them, nearly all could
          believe his divine mission.
          This has always been the case in regard to all the Prophets, for
          the sons of those who killed the Prophets living in their day
          adorned the sepulchres of those whom their fathers had put to
          death, and crucified the Son of God.
          Why cannot the people acknowledge a Prophet while he is living?
          It is because their acts and feelings make them like the old
          infidel who said, "Old Bright, although I love you so much, I
          would freely give you away, if by so doing I could know that
          there is a God." I presume many of you would give your pet cow,
          ox, or horse, if by that gift you could know that brother Brigham
          is a Prophet. He is what he professes to be, and a good deal
          more; I wish you all be of one heart and of one mind, and make
          this place like the garden of Eden, the blessings of the
          Almighty, both temporal and spiritual, will rest upon you.
          My mind is cheerful and comfortable, except when I see and
          reflect upon the carelessness, stupidity, and worldly affections
          of many of this people, whom I love and delight to be with, then
          I mourn over them.
          Let us go on unto perfection, not leaving the doctrines of
          Christ, repentance from dead works, and baptism for remission of
          sins, but, keeping them in mind, go on to perfection. Do not make
          calculations a second time to lay a foundation for repentance and
          baptism; but walk humbly and faithfully before the Lord our God,
          and listen to the counsels that He gives to us through His
          In all the counsel and teaching that I give, I lay myself liable
          to be corrected, and if found in error I am willing to
          acknowledge it at once. Then why should not you be willing also?
          I am ready and willing to come to the light, that I may be
          scanned, purged, and purified, that I may love God with all my
          heart, might, mind, and strength, and my neighbor as myself.
          Perhaps many feel a little sober because our bread is cut off,
          but I am glad of it, because it will be a warning to us, and
          teach us to lay it up in future, as we have been told. How many
          times have you been told to store up your wheat against the hard
          times that are coming upon the nations of the earth? When we
          first came into these valleys our President told us to lay up
          stores of all kinds of grain, that the earth might rest once in
          seven years. The earth is determined to rest, and it is right
          that it should. It only requires a few grasshoppers to make the
          earth rest, they can soon clear it. This is the seventh year, did
          you ever think of it?
               There is very little grain in Great Salt Lake county, and
          but little between here and that county, and none south of this
          place, except at Peteetneet, but I expect we will have some
          potatoes, squashes, corn, and so on, and do first rate.
          When we first came here, and lived on thistle roots, segos, wolf
          skins, and like articles of food, we considered that we were
          doing well; then let us go to, and strive by the help of God to
          be Saints.
          We are going ahead, and if you who live here are not, we shall
          leave you behind. Fathers and mothers, families, old and young,
          all who are in favor of going ahead and serving the Lord our God,
          say, aye. (The response to this call was simultaneous and
          Those who wish to go home and attend to their families, their
          farms, and their cattle, say, no. (No response.)
          If you will be humble and faithful from this time forth, the
          Lamanites will never trouble you, but will come and humble
          themselves at your feet and do your chores. Why is it that they
          trouble you now? Because a portion of the same spirit which
          actuates them exists among some of you. Is not this the case?
          Tell it out, have you not some of the same feelings towards them
          which they evince towards you?
          If you are not careful, wrong feelings will get power over you,
          and you will begin to murmur and grumble. If you will be one,
          there will be no more trouble from this time forth, and this has
          got to be done, or there will be trouble. We must be one, in
          order that this earth may be regenerated, and that we may have
          peace, unity, and love prevailing. Quarrelling in this Church!
          Can that be the truth? Yes, and it is hard to tell anything else
          but truth when speaking of vices and follies of men.
          Let us listen to our President, sever ourselves from the world,
          cling to our God, and to His cause, and turn our minds and
          thoughts to Him, and the building up of His kingdom on the earth.
          There is everything here in the mountains with which to beautify
          our homes and make our cities glorious; then let us go to work
          with all our mights, and be faithful from this time onward.
          May God help you, and bless you in all things that pertain to
          you, is my prayer. Amen. 
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, July 13, 1855
                          Jedediah M. Grant, July 13, 1855
                           FOR SACRED THINGS--REFORMATION.
             Discourses by Presidents B. Young, H. C. Kimball, and J. M.
          and Elder E. T. Benson, Delivered July 13, 1855, at a Conference
                         held at Provo City, Utah Territory.
          PRES. J. M. GRANT--The instructions given in the forenoon, to
          have your thoughts concentrated, and your faith, prayers, and
          practice one, must be admitted by all to be of the utmost
          importance to the Saints of God. If we do not enjoy the Spirit of
          the Lord, there are reasons that we ourselves can assign for the
          absence of that Spirit. The practice of Saints, if good, will
          always bring the Spirit of the Lord, and keep that Spirit with
          them from day to day.
          I am aware that the Spirit is grieved with different individuals
          for different causes; some do not attend to their prayers in the
          season thereof, they do not attend to their duties of the present
          moment, they do not concentrate their feelings, but allow their
          minds to wander like the fools' eyes to the four winds of heaven,
          hence they are left to grope for themselves as the blind for the
          wall. But those who live up to their duties, the duties of the
          present hour, and always make those duties the primary duties of
          life, live in the light of the Lord, and walk in the path laid
          down by the Savior of the world; they are never in the dark, for
          the light of the lord is shining upon them.
          While there are such items connected with our faith and duty, as
          were laid before us in the morning, we may do well to give some
          additional advice in relation thereto.
          I have noticed in my travels among the Saints, from time to time,
          that their profession was long and loud in relation to their
          strength and faith in "Mormonism," and in fact they would be much
          offended if called weak in the faith; they will speak well of
          faith, repentance, baptism, the gift of the Holy Ghost by the
          laying on of hands, the healing of the sick by the administration
          of the Elders, and of some of the general views of the Church,
          and claim to be very strong, very devout, and very much attached
          to the cause, and would feel much offended indeed if any one
          should even suspect that they were weak in the faith; and at the
          same time perhaps those individuals, who make such high
          professions of faith and devotedness, will acknowledge that there
          are certain important truths revealed from heaven which they
          would ridicule, scoff at, and trample under their feet.
          They will also permit their children to ridicule them, and will
          laugh them out of their doors by the aid of their children and
          those friends who visit them, and yet claim to be strong in the
          faith, to be firm in the principles of "Mormonism," and
          Latter-day Saints of good standing. When the Prophet Joseph was
          living and gave such revelations to the Church as God gave to
          him, those persons could not endure them all, there were
          doctrines which they would not receive as from God.
          I, as one individual, would give all such persons this
          advice--whatever you do, and whatever you may have been guilty
          of, for you are guilty of many improprieties and, probably, of
          many unvirtuous acts of life, forsake that which is not right,
          and begin to walk in the light of life.
          Do not allow yourselves to laugh at, or treat with scorn, any
          revelation of God; and I would further advise that you do not
          allow your wives, sons, or daughters to do it, but rear the
          standard of truth, and make it one of the leading points of your
          faith to support that standard in your families, and among your
          friends, and thus have the law of God made honourable.
          Inasmuch as the Almighty God has revealed certain doctrines and
          sanctioned certain practices, and seeing that the Almighty has
          said that these revelations and practices are true and righteous,
          I therefore advise that you do not allow the same to be trampled
          under foot as salt that has no savor. Again, let no man, whether
          Gentile or Jew, Israelite or Greek, nor your wives or children,
          nor any whom you have jurisdiction over, throw out any jeers
          upon, nor sneer, laugh, and scoff at, any portion of the law of
          God. Some items of doctrine are especially obnoxious to some men
          and some women who have peculiar feelings respecting them, and
          because of such feelings they begin to laugh at those who are
          favorable to those items, and attempt to spoil the good leaven.
          My advice in all such cases is, just tell them that there is the
          hole which the carpenter made, and they can go through it, for
          you will have the law of God reverenced by all who reside in or
          visit your habitation. I merely give this advice as some that
          might be applied to the Saints; as some of the every day and
          practical advice. I allude to the entire law of God, to all that
          the Lord our God has revealed, whether it pertains to the
          building of tabernacles or to the building of temples, or to
          faith, repentance, baptism, or the laying on of hands, or to the
          matrimonial relations, or to any doctrine or principle which
          relates to the salvation and glory of man.
          I say as one, that I have no fellowship for that man who will
          permit any person, over whom he has any rightful control, to
          ridicule the law, or any portion of the law, of God. I have no
          fellowship for those who allow any such proceedings in their
          houses, neither have I any fellowship for those who ridicule the
          law of God in any respect; and I shall be glad when they take
          their exit to California, or to the States, for they are, in
          their persons, in their actions, and by their words, detrimental
          to their neighbors and the circles in which they move.
          You who live here and round about, whether you are governed by a
          proper spirit in all these matters of doctrine I know not, but
          whether or not, these ideas will not hurt you. It is too late in
          the day to preach poor pussyism here, for you will have to live
          up to these practical duties of life, one and all, and be one, to
          pray often in public as well as in private, to honor God and His
          word in all your ways, and to see that His law is not dishonored
          by any under your control.
          I am aware that some of you suppose that this is a great meeting,
          a three days' meeting, and of course you expect to hear some
          great mysteries pertaining to the kingdom of God. Well, you have
          heard them this morning, and I wish to offer some further
          teaching on the practical duties which pertain to family
          government. I know some men, who have been in this Church twenty
          or twenty-two years, who are as they were, stereotyped editions,
          and who admit strangers into their houses, and allow them to
          blaspheme, to curse, and swear.
          I wish to see those who profess to be Saints act as Saints ought
          to act. In the Church of the living God I believe that every man
          and woman that will admit evil practices, ought to be called up
          and dealt with for their fellowship, and if they will not reform,
          regulate their households and set them in order, they ought to be
          cut off from the Church. It is humbug to talk about first
          regulating a city, a county, or a territory; but start with a
          family at a time, and let the Bishop who presides see what is
          going on with every family, and when a family is found which will
          admit of God and His laws being ridiculed, cut them off from the
          Church. If any are found who will curse and swear, and break the
          law of the Sabbath, bring them up and deal with them for that;
          and if any are known to steal, deal with them for that act.
          The Church needs trimming up, and if you will search, you will
          find in your wards certain branches which had better be cut off.
          The kingdom would progress much faster, and so will you
          individually, than it will with those branches on, for they are
          only dead weights to the great wheel.
          First get the families united, then get the wards, the towns, the
          cities, and the counties regulated, and you will have every part
          of the Territory right; but this spirit of ridicule must not be
          allowed. Is a man who loves God going to have the law of the
          Almighty ridiculed? Many of those who profess so much, will feign
          publicly acknowledge and support the very doctrines which they
          and their friends deride and permit to be scoffed at, and at the
          same time they will practise unlawfully, in secret, those things
          which they accuse others of.
          I would like to see the work of reformation commence, and
          continue until every man had to walk to the line, then we should
          have something like union; but you might as well cast little
          pebbles in the air to stay the wind as to undertake to make those
          walk right, pray right, and do right who are full of the devil.
          People must be right in their works, and be brought to know and
          practise their duties. You have got doctrine enough and
          revelation enough, and perhaps one difficulty is that you are too
          full of them. One doctrine which you need is to make your
          families, your streets, and every thing about you clean, and to
          prepare proper outhouses. Purify yourselves, your houses, lots,
          farms, and every thing around you on the right and on the left,
          then the Spirit of the Lord can dwell with you.
          Do you suppose, when I go into a house that is filthy, that I
          believe that Saints of God dwell there? No, I believe that they
          are a filthy set of beings. Saints must practise cleanliness and
          purity, and show by their prayers, by all their works, and in
          their families, that they are reforming, and forsaking all and
          every kind and species of filthiness and evil practice, no matter
          what it is, no, not though it takes the hair off from your heads;
          no matter if it be high, low, rough, or smooth, the Almighty has
          given you a law to obey and reverence; and if you practise those
          doctrines which you have embraced, though all hell foam against
          you, by the power of God you will triumph and ask no odds of any
          Talk about the Saints coming up to the Church of the first born,
          to the state of perfection which Enoch attained; if men and women
          ever attain to this, they have got to be pure in all their
          habits, pure in their spirits as well as in their doctrines, for
          the Lord has told us what is right and required in those things.
          We have the best code of laws and the best men to teach us there
          are upon the earth, therefore all that is wanted is for us to
          practise those lessons which are taught us by the servants of the
          living God, and to love God with all our hearts, and live
          continually in the fear of the Almighty. Then when you come to
          meeting, you will not hear chastisement and reproof, but you will
          hear the peaceable things of the kingdom, and you will hear men
          and women speak and sing the sweet things of the kingdom of God.
          In conclusion, may that light which is in you increase till you
          are prepared to bask in the perfect light of God. May God bless
          and save you, is my prayer in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Ezra T.
          Benson, July 13, 1855
                            Ezra T. Benson, July 13, 1855
                           FOR SACRED THINGS--REFORMATION.
             Discourses by Presidents B. Young, H. C. Kimball, and J. M.
          and Elder E. T. Benson, Delivered July 13, 1855, at a Conference
                         held at Provo City, Utah Territory.
          ELDER E. T. BENSON -- I feel thankful for the privilege and
          blessing that I now enjoy with my brethren, and for the privilege
          of bearing my testimony to the peaceable things of the kingdom of
          God. I have been indeed edified to-day by the remarks that have
          been made, and for one I mean to try to practise the teachings,
          and carry them out to the letter, according to the ability that I
          Although some people may think that those items are small, and
          not what they expected to have on this occasion, still they are
          just such doctrines as I expected to hear; and I shall continue
          to expect to hear them until we become more perfect in the Gospel
          than we are at present, for we must learn to practise what has
          been committed unto us as a people and as individuals, before we
          shall be taught any greater things. You may search into your own
          hearts, among your families, and in the midst of your own
          neighborhood, and you will find that those things which have been
          touched upon, are what grieve the Holy Spirit, and cause more or
          less dissension in our midst.
          When Jesus commissioned the Apostles, telling them to go and
          preach the Gospel to every creature, and baptize every one that
          believed, he promised that they should receive the gift of the
          Holy Ghost, which would lead them into all truth, and show them
          things past, present, and to come. We all know that the Spirit is
          a sure guide for all the Latter-day Saints; hence, we also know
          that the dictation of that Spirit will not lead to confusion,
          neither will it bring darkness, hatred, malice, and envy, and it
          will not lead a man into error, but it will lead and direct him
          into all truth. That Spirit which we received by being obedient
          to the Gospel covenant will be our constant guide and companion
          in sickness and in health; and what is the feeling of that
          individual who enjoys the sweet and benign influences of the Holy
          Ghost? He acknowledges the hand of God in all things, whether in
          life or in death, in prosperity or in adversity; it matters not
          what his situation may be, all is right with him. He merely
          wishes to know what there is for him to do, and he is all alive
          in "Mormonism."
          Such an individual is willing to be taught the simple things of
          the kingdom, and he will not ridicule "Mormonism" in any respect,
          neither will he suffer it to be done under his roof, nor upon his
          possessions, and he is willing to lay down his life for it, and
          Jesus said, "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay
          down his life for his friends." I was actually astonished when I
          used to hear some of the brethren, at the time the Prophet Joseph
          was martyred, say they were afraid he was in transgression, and
          had incurred the displeasure of the Almighty, for no Latter-day
          Saint ever believed it for a moment. Why? Because there were the
          words of Jesus, that he had the greatest love who could lay down
          his life for his friends; and Jesus himself had this love, for he
          laid down his life for his friends; and by his death and
          resurrection opened up the way to eternal lives.
          It is the little things that we need to observe now, and as
          brother Brigham says, the observance of the small things is what
          brings us the great blessings of the Almighty. Look, and think of
          the position of the people here, and in various other places
          throughout the Territory of Utah; do they all strictly honor the
          principles which brother Grant has been speaking upon? Most of
          them say they do, but I wish to see the works.
          A man who has labored from the commencement of the work has
          embraced certain principles because God has commanded him, not
          because he wanted such principles to be established, not that his
          appetite was of such a nature that he desired something of the
          kind, but because the great Jehovah had so commanded through His
          Prophets; and hence these things cannot be ridiculed by the
          Saints; the counsel of the servants of God cannot be treated with
          contempt, and set at naught, without condemnation following.
          Still you will find some who ridicule and treat as naught the
          holy principles of our religion, and say, "I am sound in faith; I
          am filled with religion, but I cannot put up with that awful
          doctrine, polygamy."
          It is not best to make a great profession in these days, but let
          our actions and works correspond with our profession, and that
          will show that we have embraced the truth for the love of it, and
          not for gain. Let persecution come, let drought, famine, and
          distress come, for the Lord has designed them; and when these
          things come, we can eat thistle roots and drink buttermilk, and
          honor God, and have His Holy Spirit with us. We can do this
          because we have embraced the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the
          faith of Abraham. Abraham did not stand and argue with the Lord,
          in order to find out whether Sarah was to bear him another Isaac
          in the place of the one he was commanded to offer up, but he
          believed that God would order all things right, and his faith was
          accounted to him for righteousness.
          Shall we not have confidence in God's Prophets, and in those whom
          He has placed to teach us? Those who are not satisfied with them
          are constantly grumbling and growling about their circumstances
          and the prosperity of the Church, but when we have the Holy
          Spirit, all is right, and we feel satisfied; the visions of the
          Almighty and of the heavens are before us night and day, and we
          have confidence in the holy Gospel, in the work of the Lord, in
          the Priesthood, and in those who hold that authority upon this
          When people have the keys of the Priesthood and the light of
          heaven, they ought to use the blessing of God as not abusing
          I wish to bear my testimony to the truth of what you have been
          taught this day, for it is faithful, and has been dictated by the
          Holy Ghost. When I enjoy the spirit of this Gospel and the power
          of the Priesthood, do you wish to know how I feel? I feel that I
          could preach my way through all manner of opposition. Do I
          rejoice? Yes, all the time; when I lie down and when I rise up.
          Latter-day Saints never should be troubled by any small matters,
          but when troubles do arise, say, "The Lord's will be done in all
          things; I am short-sighted; I cannot see afar off, and unless my
          mind is lighted up by the Holy Spirit, I cannot do much good." 
          Do we enjoy ourselves without that Spirit? I will ask my brethren
          and sisters now present, do we enjoy as much as it is our
          privilege to enjoy? Can we enjoy the Holy Spirit when we are
          finding fault with our neighbors? No, we cannot. God has set in
          His Church, firstly, Apostles; secondarily, Prophets; then
          pastors, teachers, helps, governments, and spiritual gifts; for
          the perfecting of the Saints, for the work of the ministry, for
          the edifying of the body of Christ, and to prevent the members
          thereof from being tossed to and fro by every wind of doctrine;
          and they are to continue until we all come to a unity of the
          faith. I think you are pretty well satisfied in Provo with those
          who are placed over you, for you know that they are appointed by
          the authority of heaven, and it is the right of those who
          appointed them to dictate you and all others; it is therefore
          your duty to give heed to those placed over you in authority, and
          if you do, you will enjoy the Spirit of God to a great extent,
          even to your hearts' satisfaction.
          We are called upon to uphold, by our faith, works, and our
          prayers, those who are over us; we have raised our hands to
          sustain and uphold them, and will we turn round and find fault
          with that which we have sanctioned? Can you enjoy the Spirit of
          God if you do this? No. In order to enjoy that spirit you must
          reverence all the members of the Priesthood, no matter who may be
          in possession of it. Do you ever hear brother Brigham, brother
          Heber, brother Jedediah, or the Twelve Apostles, censuring the
          Bishops, or any other person, without a cause? No, never. They
          give them all the influence and power that they can, in order
          that they may be bold before the people, and have influence to
          carry out the things that are given to them to accomplish. Where
          there is a lack of confidence and proper reverence, people are
          afraid of the Prophet of God.
          Does brother Brigham ever tyrannize! No, he blesses the Saints
          all the day long, and bears with the sins of the people, as much
          so as any other Prophet of God ever did, and asks God all the day
          long, to forgive them; and he continues to do this so long as
          there is a spark of integrity left in the individuals over whom
          he is watching.
               We do not expect to be purified and become perfect at once,
          so much so that the old cloven foot can have no influence among
          us, but I expect that the vision of the Prophet Daniel will be
          fulfilled, and we are the persons to carry it out. I feel to
          continue to work righteousness, and the time is soon coming when
          all will have to walk to the line.
          Jesus says, "Except ye are of one heart and of one mind, ye are
          not mine;" and we have to shape our minds until they become
          alike. there are not many ways of getting to heaven, for God is
          one, and His way of saving mankind is one.
          "But," says the old sectarian priest, "going to heaven is like
          going to mill; if your wheat is good the miller will never
          inquire which way you came." Let others say as they please, we
          know that we have got to walk in that straight and narrow path
          which has been pointed out to us, and that the course which saved
          men in former days will save the people in these days, and that
          the same principles that will save us will save others. If we
          would carry out practically all that we have received, and not
          trouble ourselves about any more until that was done, it would
          exalt us to a higher state that we now enjoy. I have something
          good to do; I am all right. Here are our blessings now; we taste
          the blessings of this congregation to-day, and our place and our
          blessings are at present in this bowery, and not away off
          somewhere else. If our feelings are centred here, then are we
          blessed indeed; but if our minds are wandering, they cannot be
          full of joy, for they must be concentrated on the things of God
          and His kingdom so long as this meeting continues; then we shall
          feel refreshed, and I presume we all need to be.
          [After making a few remarks about the traditions, habits, and
          practices of the Indians, Elder Benson continued as follows--]
          It is our duty, brethren and sisters, to go to work and bring
          these natives to an understanding of the principles of
          civilization, to teach them to till the earth, and earn their
          bread by the sweat of their brows; and if they are needy and ask
          us, we should feed them, and at all times be an example to them.
          We have not been as faithful as we ought to have been in many of
          these things.
          I have a little Indian boy and girl, and certainly it is
          repugnant to my feelings to have to put up with their dirty
          practices, but I have passed a great many of these things by; and
          this I have done because I knew what our duties were. In a short
          season we shall be rewarded for all that we do to civilize this
          lost and fallen race. The little boy will soon be quite bright,
          his mind is becoming clear and perceptive, and if he sees a
          horse, a man, or any other object, he will always remember them.
          True, he yet has some of his Indian traits, and I presume it will
          be some time before they are all erased from his memory.
          And even some Saints are guilty of many filthy habits, for some,
          when they are sick and ought to observe cleanliness in the
          fullest degree, will send for the Elders to lay hands upon them,
          and say, "I was taken sick a week ago last Sunday, and have been
          so bad that I have not washed since, and I have not had a clean
          shirt on, or clean sheets upon the bed."
          God has condescended to speak to His Saints, and has instructed
          them to wash their bodies with pure water, and to observe
          cleanliness of body as well as of spirit; this is necessary, and
          belongs to our religion. We should also have wisdom, and exercise
          it in both eating and drinking, ever keeping a guard over
          ourselves in all the practices of life, and listen to the still
          small whisperings of the Holy Spirit which never leads a man into
          I know that the Lord directed brother Joseph by His Spirit, and
          he never went wrong. What guides brother Brigham? The same Holy
          Spirit of promise, and blessed is that man who understands the
          things of the Spirit, for it will direct him aright and lead him
          in the way of life, and open up his mind to behold the things of
          eternity; and the very moment that a man sees with this Spirit,
          he understands the mind of God.
          Many have been led astray, and have believed that they could get
          to heaven without being united with the body of the Church; but
          if we are ever saved, we must be concentrated in our feelings,
          and our power, objects, and faith must be one in the kingdom of
          God. When we are one, we feel to rejoice in the things of God,
          and all goes well.
          May the Holy Spirit guide you from this time, henceforth. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, September 24, 1854
                        Jedediah M. Grant, September 24, 1854
                             INSTRUCTIONS TO NEW COMERS.
            A discourse by President Jedediah M. Grant, Delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, September 24, 1854.
          While the sacrament is passing it may be well to speak a few
          words to the people. I am aware much instruction has been given
          to the people, at least to the majority of those who are here
          before me; and we do not wish to preach you to death, but we wish
          to preach so that you may enjoy life. A thousand ideas float in
          the minds of the people in relation to preaching; each have their
          standard, and their notions of what they call the sacred desk.
          All "Mormon" desks are sacred. I am no more religious to-day than
          yesterday. I am equally as religious in the kanyons hauling wood
          as in the pulpit; and if I were going to swear in either place, I
          should prefer the pulpit to swear in; consequently, I consider
          that a man should live his religion in all places, and under all
          circumstances and situations in life.
          We understand how to serve the Lord, (I speak of all the
          Latter-day Saints,) that is, we understand how to serve Him in
          some things--we have learned some duties which are practicable at
          the present time. I am aware that some Elders who go forth and
          preach long and pious sermons, frequently represent Zion as one
          of the most delightsome places in the world, as if the people in
          Salt Lake City were so pure and holy that the flame of sanctity
          would almost singe the hair off a common man's head. Others
          suppose when they come here, that they are to be fed, clothed,
          and housed independent of their own exertions. Some of the Elders
          have told the Saints in England that the first two weeks after
          they landed here all they would have to do would be to
          contemplate the beauties of Zion, and be furnished two weeks'
          provisions. The imaginations of some Saints have been so exalted
          by the Elders who preached to them, that they suppose that all
          our pigs come ready cooked, with knives and forks in them, and
          are running round squealing to be eaten; that every tray is
          filled with bread, every manger with potatoes, and every man's
          wagon with the choice fruits of the earth. On the contrary, when
          the Saints from abroad come to Zion, they will find the people so
          busy that they can scarcely find time to speak to them, and if
          they have lost some of their friends on the way, the people in
          Zion have not time even to help them mourn.
          Some come here and are astonished, for they had supposed that
          they should find the stereotyped editions of Zion sitting on the
          seats singing "hallelujah," and shouting "Glory to God"
          continually; but when they find us all active, some rushing to
          the kanyons, some gathering in the crops, and others rearing
          houses--when they find the people all alive with business, they
          think that the "Mormons" are all telegraphs; and so we are,
          stereotyped editions of the telegraph. Every man and woman in
          Zion at their duty is a telegraph moving and exerting an
          influence, building up, fortifying, and fulfilling the words of
          the Prophets by building city after city. It makes no difference
          whether we have gold and silver, or not; we build just as fast
          without money as the people of the east build with it, and a
          little faster. A man who has faith says he has capital in
          himself; he is telegraph enough to build him a house. Another man
          has to sit down, and count "three and two are five, five and two
          are seven, seven and four are eleven, and eleven and six are
          seventeen;" and so he will calculate, and unless he has so many
          dimes, he has not faith enough to draw the first rock, or the
          first adobie, or get the first foot of lumber, or do the first
          But you take a man who has got in him the true "Mormon" spirit,
          and he considers that he can accomplish, just what he thinks
          ought to be accomplished. If he considers that he wants a house,
          he deems himself competent to go at it, and to build such a one
          as he wants; if he wants a small one he can build it, and if a
          large one he can build it. That is the "Mormon" spirit.
          If you Saints who have just arrived here expect a heaven, I will
          tell you how to get it; if you have brought a small one with you,
          keep it, and keep adding to it; that is, if you want a heaven, go
          to and make it. If you have not means enough to buy a farm, go to
          work and make one; if you have not means enough to buy a house,
          build one, and thus gather around you the comforts of life, and
          the means to subsist upon. But I will tell you one thing, if you
          neglect to pray, neglect to watch, neglect to do your duty, and
          to serve your God for yourselves, you will be apt to become
          dissatisfied, disheartened, and dispirited, and wish to go back
          from whence you came. But the opposite will be the result with
          those who keep the commandments of God, who watch and pray, who
          are active in their spirits and in their religion, and work out
          their salvation with fear and trembling, if you please, or they
          may work as hard as they please without fearing and trembling, if
          they have a mind to. Consequently, when you come here, it is
          essential that you keep the same religion that you embraced
          before you started to come here.
          I am aware that a great many have so much piety in them, that
          they are like the Baptist priest who came to see Joseph Smith.
          Joseph had the discernment of spirits to read a man, and a
          peculiar faculty of using up the old sectarian tone to "my
          dee-e-er brethren." When he heard that good old tone he used to
          imitate it; and whenever one of the class, who are so filled with
          piety, and the good old tone, came to Nauvoo, Joseph used
          forthwith to take a course to evaporate their sanctimoniousness,
          a great deal of which consists in the long asslike tone. Before
          the Baptist priest, I have referred to, came to Nauvoo, he had
          heard brother William O. Clark, who could preach a bible and a
          half at a sermon, and could use the fashionable old tone, the
          blessed old tone. This Baptist imbibed a notion that we were as
          much ahead of his ideas of piety, and that our tone was as much
          longer than his, as the strength of the arguments produced by
          Clark were stronger than his; and supposed that our
          sanctimoniousness was co-equal with what he considered the merits
          of our doctrine.
          Under these impressions he came to Nauvoo, and was introduced to
          the Prophet. In the meantime some person came up that brother
          Joseph would have a talk with, but while doing this he kept his
          eye upon the stranger, on this priest. After he got through
          chatting, the Baptist stood before him, and folding his arms
          said, "Is it possible that I now flash my optics upon a Prophet,
          upon a man who has conversed with my Savior?" "Yes," says the
          Prophet, "I don't know but you do; would not you like to wrestle
          with me?" That, you see, brought the priest right on to the
          thrashing floor, and he turned a summerset right straight. After
          he had whirled round a few times, like a duck shot in the head,
          he concluded that his piety had been awfully shocked, even to the
          centre, and went to the Prophet to learn why he had so shocked
          his piety. The Prophet commenced and showed him the follies of
          the world, and the absurdity of the long tone, and that he had a
          super-abundant stock of sanctimoniousness.
          You Saints who have come here, if you have around you the garb of
          sectarianism, must calculate that the "Mormon" plow will turn
          that under; you must calculate that here we are a practical
          people; a people who believe in their religion, and are good
          Saints; who do their work, and attend to their prayers in the
          season thereof; and are not so much in a hurry in the morning,
          but that they can kneel down and consecrate their families, their
          effects, themselves, and all they have, to the Most High God.
          But in the midst of this people you will find various stripes of
          character. The net has been cast into the sea, and, if the
          parable is true, it has drawn to the shore all kinds of fish, and
          you must not be alarmed if you find in Zion some curiosities. If
          I wished to find the best men in the world, I should go to Zion
          to find them; if I wished to find the biggest devil, I would look
          in Zion for him, among the people of God; there I can find the
          greatest scamps. I believe the words of Christ are true, that the
          net has gathered of every kind of fish; that it has gathered men
          of every class. Do not marvel if you find here goats as well as
          sheep, and the speckled goats and the long-haired goats, and the
          smooth goats and the rough goats, and goats of every grade, size
          and color, mixed among the sheep. Do not think you will be
          without your trials here, that you are to be a stereotyped
          edition to sit upon stools, singing glory to God, and that that
          is all you have to do.
          I have often said to the English brethren and sisters that were I
          in England, for there is where the Elders preach piety, I would
          tell them the first things they might expect to meet in Zion,
          viz: to leap into the mire and help to fill up a mud hole, to
          make adobies with their sleeves rolled up, and be spattered with
          clay from head to foot; and that some would be set to ditching in
          Zion, to making ditch fence ankle deep in mire; and that they
          might expect to eat their bread by the sweat of their brow, as in
          their native county. I told them when I was in St. Louis, where
          there were many English and Scotch, that if we succeeded in
          getting to Zion it was a "knack," and if we did not it was a
          "knick," and consequently there were "knick-knacks" in going to
          Zion, and "knick-knacks" after we got to Zion.
          These things are all connected with the common salvation that you
          heard Elder Hyde treat upon this forenoon, the salvation that is
          common with the people of God. You understand it, you have
          practised it, and tasted the sweets thereof. You come here, and
          you think that we are busy and active, but only live your
          religion, and you will feel the power, spirit, and fulness
          thereof, as you have never felt it previous to this. What I mean
          by the spirit is the Spirit of God, the Holy Ghost, which you can
          feel from the crown of your heads to the soles of your feet. It
          is here with you if you do right, and everything you anticipate
          in the Holy Ghost, and in the power of the Priesthood, and in the
          love of God, and everything you have thought of in your own minds
          is here, and God is here; and if you have thought of bad, it is
          here also. If you approach a large furnace, the first thing you
          see are the black columns of smoke rising up and towering aloft,
          and if you approach nearer you discover piles of coal and ore,
          and the ashes, dust, and cinders which have been heaved out; but
          all this will never convince you that there is no iron there. You
          would say that where there is so much iron cinders there must be
          iron; that the iron has been taken out and dressed; that there
          must have been lots of iron here, and you begin to look for the
          If you occasionally see a dirty sheep, do not let it try you; if
          you do not get a bushel of wheat as quick as you want it, do not
          let that try your faith. If you are going to die of hunger, that
          is the time to be strong in the God of Israel. I wish to see the
          new comers active in their religion; I wish to see them live
          their religion, and not only seek to be endowed with the spirit
          of Zion, but to bring the spirit of Zion with them. I wish to see
          them come here with their countenances lit up with the love of
          God, and their hearts burning with the Holy Ghost, and their
          voices sounding like the music of sweet instruments, to join in
          the songs of Zion, and in the work of our God, in cultivating the
          earth, and in building houses. Bless your souls, if you desire an
          experience of this kind, in order to build up Zion, you must
          learn. Unless you have practice in it, unless you begin with one
          house, and then go from one house to another, you cannot learn
          how to build. You cannot learn how to make a farm by reading
          alone, but you have got to have the practical knowledge. So it is
          in relation to building; an architect may draw a fine design of a
          house, yet there is not one man in a thousand who can carry it
          out, without the architect is continually by him to direct, and
          to say, place that there, and this yonder.
          We may talk of making our own heaven, and of building up the city
          of Zion, and making it beautiful, and having it polished after
          the similitude of a palace, but we must have an experience in
          doing such a work, before we can accomplish it. The world do not
          comprehend all things as they should; they do not comprehend the
          greatest things; the light and power of God, pertaining to man in
          his probation, towering among the clouds and smoke, but its force
          is down here in the practical duties of life, in the work under
          the sun that we have to do.
          Now when you come to zion, you will find men standing upon their
          feet; but go into the world, and there, if a man wants to show
          himself to be a smart man, he must mount a cabbage leaf, hiccup,
          and jump up to spit over his shirt collar. There was a man here
          last winter who thought himself a smart man because his father
          was a smart man; and he was all the while on the strain, like a
          man who mounts a cabbage leaf to hiccup, or jumps up to spit over
          his shirt collar in trying to be smart. What do they make of it?
          Nothing but a bubble, and a laughing stock for men of sense.
          The ore, coal, and flux are put in the tunnel head of the
          furnace, and iron and cinder run to the boshes below, and are
          separated. You see the smoke first, but you find here the true
          metal.--"The Mormons, a little handful of Mormons cannot
          accomplish much," used to be said. But we are gathering out the
          tough wire, it has got to come here.
          I wish the Saints who come here, to be Saints. I said last
          spring, curse a man who will starve the poor by keeping up the
          price of grain, and who will not help his brethren. I know some
          men will say that we have fine men among us. I know that we have
          first-rate, good mercantile houses here; I like them first-rate;
          but it would be better for us to do our own trading, and by that
          means keep our money in our midst.
          These are my views, and have been all the time. I like to see a
          "Mormon" be a "Mormon," and act like a "Mormon." A good "Mormon"
          will have an elastic faith, and not say, "O brother Grant, the
          old snag ship is in snag harbor," but be mindful that brother
          Brigham is cautious how he guides her. Brother Joseph had not
          time to be careful, and run the ship around the snags, but was
          under the necessity of running the ship right on to them. But
          when Brigham chooses to run around a snag, or across a snag, he
          will do so. The ship is all oak, let her slide. If we are in snag
          harbor, all right; we will steer the ship, and run around the
          snag, or over it, just as the Lord pleases. Jesus, our elder
          brother, is at the helm, and has a good crew aboard, who are
          faithful, meek, and humble. If the Saints desire to strengthen
          Zion, let them be humble, meek, lowly, and contrite in spirit;
          let them be diligent, and seek counsel through the light of the
          Spirit of God, and watch and pray, and they will be filled with
          joy, and be happy at night, and healthy in the morning; and their
          spirits will be buoyant, and they can shout "glory hallelujah" in
          May the God of heaven fill you with the Holy Ghost, and give you
          light and joy in His kingdom. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Orson
          Pratt, July 8, 1855
                              Orson Pratt, July 8, 1855
                                 THE KINGDOM OF GOD.
             A Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, delivered in the Bowery,
                         Great Salt Lake City, July 8, 1855.
          I have been highly pleased with the remarks that have fallen from
          the lips of brother Grant, who first addressed us this morning.
          The subject of the coming of the kingdom of God, and its
          organization upon the earth, is one of vast importance to the
          present generation, as well as to all past generations, who are
          equally concerned with the present. Ever since the day that men
          were organized upon the earth they have been equally concerned in
          regard to that period--that eventful period when God's kingdom
          should be established upon the earth. That day or period has been
          looked forward to as the day of the perfection of their glory and
          And when that time comes, all governments, and systems of
          government, that have been organized upon this little creation of
          the Almighty, contrary to the order of heaven, or in other
          words--all governments that have not been theocratical in their
          nature, but that have been organized in a greater or less degree
          by man's wisdom, will be done away.
          The Almighty in some degree controls among mankind, as far as
          they will let Him. He controls the destinies of the nations, so
          far as they will permit Him; yet He does not control them so far
          as to destroy the agency of the human family, consequently they,
          through their own corrupt notions, have departed from the great
          principles of government given by the Lord to man in the
          beginning. Mankind have felt a disposition to seek after some
          kind of government of their own; they have all seemed to manifest
          a feeling to have a different government from the one established
          by the Almighty; and hence, they have all rebelled against His
          government, and they have introduced creeds and systems of their
          own manufacturing.
          If there had been a government upon the face of the earth, from
          the creation of man to the present time, according to the mind
          and will of God; you would not have seen in the present age, and
          in generations that are past, different nations, different
          classes of people, having different governments, as we now behold
          them, but there would have been a oneness of nationality--a unity
          existing over all the earth. But mankind have existed for ages
          past in a divided state--in a broken condition, because of their
          rebellion against the laws and government of heaven.
          If God made this earth, and all things that pertain unto it, and
          if all were created for His honor and glory, He has the right to
          govern and control them by His own laws; and He has a right to
          enforce that government, and show Himself able to control the
          works of His hands, and it is the duty of all men to render
          obedience to His requirements. The government of heaven would not
          have been separated from the government of men, or in other
          words, there would not have been two kinds, one called
          ecclesiastical, and the other a civil government; but inasmuch as
          they have rebelled, and become corrupt and wicked, governments
          have been introduced of a different character; and the Lord has,
          in some measure, sanctioned those governments, so far as there
          were good principles existing among them.
          All good principles and laws have emanated from the Almighty, and
          have come to man by inspiration from Him. For instance, the
          government of the United States, or the Constitution, came from
          Him; it was given, we believe, by inspiration, and there are many
          things connected with the various institutions of men that are
          very good. There are many good laws and good institutions in the
          government of the United States, as well as among many other
          governments, but the government of the United States is one of
          the best that has been organized among men upon the face of the
          earth for many generations.
          "Did the Lord have a hand in the organization of the United
          States government?" asks the enquirer. Yes, the Lord had a hand
          in framing its Constitution. Why did not the Lord, at that time,
          introduce a perfect government--a theocracy? It was simply
          because the people were not prepared for it--they were too
          corrupt; and although they had more integrity, more virtue, more
          honesty, and more sympathy and feeling for that which is just and
          upright and good, than any other portion of the inhabitants of
          the earth, and probably more than a great many now have, yet they
          were far from being prepared for the government of God, which is
          a government of union.
          They were far from that, consequently the Lord inspired them to
          introduce a government that He knew would be just suited to their
          capacity, and hence it was that He inspired Jefferson,
          Washington, Franklin, and others to introduce those measures
          which they did, and to carry them out, and they were such as were
          just suited to the conditions and circumstances of the people;
          hence the government of the United States we, as a people,
          venerate and defend.
          Why do we do this? We do it because God had His hand in the
          organization of it; He controlled it so far as He could do so
          without interfering with the agency of man.
          We have seen plainly and clearly that had it not been for the
          organization of this government, as has wisely and justly been
          said, where would have been the liberty of the Latter-day Saints.
          This government, then, was organized to suit the people and the
          circumstances in which they were placed, until they were prepared
          to receive a more perfect one.
          But will the government of the United States continue for ever?
          No, it is not sufficiently perfect; and, notwithstanding it has
          been sanctioned by the Lord at a time when it was suited to the
          circumstances of the people, yet the day will come, (I will say
          it on my own responsibility and not that of this people,) the day
          will come when the United States government, and all others, will
          be uprooted, and the kingdoms of this world will be united in
          one, and the kingdom of our God will govern the whole earth, and
          bear universal sway; and no power beneath the heavens can prevent
          this taking place, if the Bible be true, and we know it to be
          The Lord will govern all things that He has made and created, for
          it is entered upon the records of heaven that all nations shall
          bow to His authority; and, consequently, we respect the
          government of the United States, because it has good principles
          in it, and not that we think it will endure for ever.
               Many great and glorious principles are contained within the
          Constitution of our country, not to say that it is perfect, but
          it is perfect so far as it pertains to the rights and privileges
          of the children of men. But there is a nucleus of a government,
          formed since that of the United States, which is perfect in its
          nature. It is perfect, having emanated from a Being who is
          But some may enquire, is it right--is it lawful for another
          government to be organized within the United States, of a
          theocratical nature? Yes, perfectly so! Does not the Constitution
          of our country guarantee to all religious societies the right of
          forming any ecclesiastical government they like? Certainly it
          does, and every intelligent man knows this to be the fact.
          The nucleus of such a government is formed, and its laws have
          emanated from the throne of God, and it is perfect, having come
          from a pure fountain; but does this make us independent of the
          laws of the United States? No, this new government does not come
          in contact with the government of the United States. In keeping
          our covenants, and observing our religious laws and ceremonies,
          or the laws that God has given to the children of men, we are not
          required to violate the principles of right that are contained in
          the Constitution and laws of the United States.
          Had not the government of the United States been framed, where
          would have been safety for this people? I answer, nowhere. If
          this Republican government had not been organized upon this
          continent, the kingdom of our God could not have been protected;
          but the hand of the Lord has been in it, and superintended its
          organization, and no one can hinder its progress.
          If this government had been formed in any other kingdom or nation
          upon the earth except the United States, where would have been
          the privileges and liberties of this people? Without the
          interference of the Almighty, and the manifestation of His
          miraculous power for our protection, we should have been rooted
          out of the earth.
          God foresaw this--He knew what would take place long beforehand,
          and He saw that it was not only necessary to have a day set for
          the preparation, and also for the beginning of the Latter-day
          work, but it was likewise important for the different kingdoms
          and nations which were in existence, and that had been organized
          by man, to go to work and start up some religious reform, and for
          the people to struggle against their mother church, and to fight
          against her tyranny and oppressions, that religious liberty and
          freedom, and the right of a free exercise of their religious
          opinions, might be guaranteed to the human family, not all at
          once, but gradually. We find that at the Reformation, when the
          great struggle for freedom and religious liberty took place, some
          of them were wrought upon to come to this new continent for the
          purpose of securing to themselves religious freedom and religious
          right; and inspired by the Almighty, as was Columbus who
          discovered this land, they planted their feet upon the American
          They were an humble people and God began to work in their minds,
          and they continued to increase, for a while, in union and love,
          having obtained privileges which before they were deprived of;
          and no doubt they imagined to themselves that universal freedom
          was about to be ushered in, but it was not exactly so, neither
          was that degree of liberty and freedom to suffice which they had
          then secured, but it was like John the Baptist's mission, merely
          to prepare the way. It was said of John, that among all that were
          born of women there were none greater than he, and yet the least
          in the kingdom of heaven was greater than he; and of all
          governments that had arisen among men, there were none so great
          and good, as the government of the United States, and yet the
          government of God in its very infancy was greater than it.
          And why was this? Because its laws emanated from a more perfect
          It was for this purpose, then, that a republic was organized upon
          this continent to prepare the way for a kingdom which shall have
          dominion over all the earth to the ends thereof.
          Hence, the Prophet Daniel has told us, that the kingdom of God
          should be cut out of the mountains without hands; in other words,
          when the kingdom of God should be taken from the mountains, it
          should be taken by the power of the Almighty, and not by Human
          hands; it should be organized by the Lord, and governed by His
          laws. God, who interests Himself in the affairs of men, was to
          speak from the heavens, and inspire His servants to give laws and
          revelations to His people, informing them that His kingdom was to
          be taken from the mountains in His own due time, and that it
          should increase until it should become a great mountain and fill
          the whole earth.
          Do the people suppose that they can frustrate the designs of the
          Almighty, and put to death the Prophets who are sent unto them,
          and fight and war against them and belch out their rage, and
          threats and persecute them as they have done, without being
          brought into judgment?
          The wicked suppose they can do this with impunity, but there is a
          God who holds the helm of the ship of Zion, and who will carry
          out His purposes with regard to the Saints of Latter-days, in
          which the kingdom, and the greatness of the kingdom, and the
          dominion under the whole heavens, shall be given to the Saints of
          the Most High and they shall possess it for ever and for ever.
          I was highly delighted with the remarks that were laid before us
          by our beloved brother this morning. And in speaking concerning
          the corruptions that men have brought into our midst, I perfectly
          agree with him, for all such corruptions and wickedness must be
          done away; they will not be suffered to exist in the kingdom of
          God; I mean by this that when there are crimes committed, they
          will be visited with their just reward and that immediately. 
          In that kingdom, when its laws go forth, there will be officers
          of peace, and they will lay judgment to the line, and the axe
          will be laid to the root of every tree that will not yield fruit,
          and it will be hewn down and cast into the fire, and be utterly
          burnt up.
          I have not said much the past winter in regard to the corruptions
          that have been practised in our midst, and why? Simply because
          there are men here, higher in authority, and whose place it is to
          rebuke sin; and they have borne testimony of the wickedness and
          corruptions that have been sent into our midst. I do not mean to
          say that all are corrupt, there are honorable exceptions, but all
          know that there have been men sent here, who were as corrupt as
          hell itself.
          Such characters, if they had met with their just deserts, would
          not now have been living to disgrace humanity. These are my
          feelings, and I will here say, that I have felt to be of one
          heart and one mind with the Presidency in relation to these
          things. Brethren, in saying these things, do we fill like
          excluding all the outsiders, so called? No, God does not design
          it; He never intended that this people should live exclusively by
          God will so order it, that we shall have a hundred of them, where
          we have had one; and we shall find that the time will come when
          all nations shall come, but they will have to walk straight.
          David has said, in speaking of that time, that when the wicked
          rulers, and corrupt kings of the earth, should come up to Zion,
          they should, while yet afar off, be seized with fear and
          trembling, and hasten away; for it will be no place for wicked
          and corrupt characters; but there will be millions of others who
          will come up to Zion, besides the Saints of God; they will come
          to behold the glory of God which will rest upon Zion. They will
          come in such numerous hosts that the gates of Zion will have to
          be open day and night to receive them; they will come as a
          multitude of nations, swarming in day and night.
          Kings, nobles, and great men, from all the principal nations of
          the earth, will come flocking to Zion with their armies, and
          their servants to view the grandeur of Zion; and they will have
          to be obedient to the mandates of the great King who shall issue
          forth His laws from Zion, or it will be no place for them to
          abide in.
          We need not think that we can get into any place where we will
          not be associated with the Gentiles; for the Lord intends that we
          shall be among them all through this mortal state, and even in
          the Millennium we find that there will be two classes of beings
          upon the earth. And if there are corrupt individuals found, they
          will be visited with punishment according to the deeds they are
          guilty of.
          Then, I rejoice; I look forward to the day of glory, when the
          glory of Zion shall be like a light upon a hill, which will
          illuminate the whole world; and the great men of the earth will
          come to see the glory of God, and be taught in the holy
          commandments that will proceed forth from our midst; and they
          will look upon Zion, and wonder, and be astonished.
          May the Lord bless us, and may the Spirit of the Lord abide with,
          and continue to surround and overshadow us, and may we not be
          fearful because of the oppressor and the wicked, but trust in the
          living God, and He will continue to protect us all the day long,
          and no power can prevail against us. If we were not one tenth as
          numerous as we are, what would it matter; if God be on our side,
          He can use up the wicked, and protect us.
          And as has been said by the First Presidency, all that we have to
          fear is our own wickedness, and corruptions, and liability to
          depart from the true faith. If we will be true and righteous, and
          if we will have faith in God, this is all that is required.
          If we are faithful to our covenants, the fury of the oppressor
          will not harm us, and where will be the strong arm of man? It
          will be like the flax in the flame, like a moth-eaten garment,
          the wicked shall vanish away, and there will be no place found
          for them.
          Then hearken to the counsel that proceeds from the First
          Presidency, and hold up your heads, and do not let them droop,
          and in this way, we shall prosper, and obtain a holy dwelling
          place in the presence of our God for ever. May God grant these
          blessings for His Son's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Ezra T.
          Benson, May 13, 1855
                            Ezra T. Benson, May 13, 1855
                       THE VINE AND FIG TREE--DUTIES OF SAINTS.
                        A discourse by Elder Ezra T. Benson, 
          Delivered in the Tabernacle, Great Salt Lake City, May 13, 1855.
          I am requested to make a few remarks at the commencement of our
          meeting this afternoon, although I would much rather hear from
          brethren, especially my beloved President Hyde who is about to
          leave us, but as it is his desire that I should make a few
          remarks, I will make the attempt.
          I rejoiced much this morning in hearing from our brethren who
          addressed us, as I generally do when I hear the Elders speak. I
          was reflecting in my mind, and asking myself whether I ever heard
          a "Mormon" sermon that I did not rejoice in? I cannot remember
          the time since I have been in the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints. It never made any difference who addressed the
          people; no matter who was called upon to speak, however eloquent
          his discourse might be, however pointed his remarks might be, no
          matter however simple, or how many times I might have heard the
          same subject treated upon, it was always edifying to me, for I
          ever found something new, and although I might have heard the
          same things, perhaps, a great many times, but my memory being so
          short and treacherous, I had forgotten some things, but as soon
          as I heard them again I could then recollect them; my mind would
          be refreshed, and I would remember that I had heard the same
          things before; and one remark that was made this morning by
          brother Clements, refreshed my mind upon things which took place
          when I was on a mission, some eight or ten years ago, in the
          United States. I mean the remarks referring to that time, which
          will surely come, when the Saints of God will sit under their own
          vine and fig tree, none daring to make them afraid.
          I was once asked the question by some of our opposers, in
          something like the following manner--"You Mormons believe that
          there is a time of peace coming; you believe that the prophecies
          of the Scriptures are to be fulfilled literally, in the same way
          that Noah's prediction of the flood was, and that your God is
          willing, and in fact designs that you shall sit under your own
          vine and fig tree, none daring to molest or make you afraid."
          "And now," says he, "Have you got them yet?" "Well," says I, "not
          exactly the fig tree, but we have got the cotton-wood tree, and
          the locust tree, and we sit under them, none daring to molest or
          make afraid, and we are in anticipation of some day having the
          fig tree." We are full of hope that the time is now near at hand,
          that it is not far a-head, when, if we are faithful to our
          callings, we shall sit under a great many other kinds of trees,
          and I don't know as it will make any difference whether it is the
          cotton-wood, chestnut, oak, apple, peach-tree, or whatever kind
          of tree it may be, so that we sit under our own vine and fig
          tree, and serve the Lord our God with full purpose of heart.
          The cotton-wood trees are grown, the peach is beginning to grow,
          and the apple and pear, and so on, are beginning to grow, and we
          all expect that not many years hence, we will have the privilege
          of sitting under our own vine and fig tree, none daring to molest
          or make afraid, and it is necessary that we should have the
          opposite in all things.
          We are people that believe in revelation, the whisperings of the
          Holy Spirit, the gifts of the Gospel of Jesus Christ; and we are
          a people that believe in the necessity of all those gifts. We say
          that they ought to exist in the Church of Christ in every age of
          the world. When a people are in possession of those glorious
          principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, they will see that
          there is a passing beauty and glory associated with them. You
          will also find opposition, slander, and reproach to be
          continually on the increase, an if it were not so, it would show
          that was not the Church of Christ. It is necessary that there
          should be an excitement in the world, and that servants of the
          Lord should in those times show their faith by their works, and
          it is also important that they should, as the Apostle has
          exhorted us, contend for all the gifts of the Gospel that are
          mentioned in the Holy Scriptures--the gift of godliness and of
          patience and charity, and all those good gifts that are spoken of
          in the Scriptures of truth. The Apostle says, if all these good
          gifts abound in you, "ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful
          in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ." Seeing, then, that
          this is the promise, how very necessary it is that we should
          improve upon those gifts bestowed upon us, by our Heavenly
          Father, and if we do not improve, we are not on the progressive,
          but are going downward.
          We can live in the kingdom of God and be stereotyped "Mormons,"
          but to accomplish this, we have to live and increase in wisdom,
          knowledge, patience, perseverance, and all the gifts and graces
          of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, for it will take all the
          perseverance, and all the faith and patience that we can command
          to live the Gospel of Christ.
          It is pleasing to reflect that we are all here as a band of
          brethren, trying to obey all the commandments of God. We are from
          many climes and countries, and we are here to prove each other,
          and see whether we can bear with each other's faults and
          weaknesses, and to try if we can endure trials, and perplexities,
          and oppositions, and the sneers of the world--the wicked portion
          of mankind. How do they look upon us, taking a general view of
          the question? It is true, there are some who are more thoroughly
          acquainted with us, who look and speak pretty favourably, but as
          a general thing they do not believe that we are a virtuous
          people; they believe that we have many ordinances and principles
          amongst us established to gratify a certain portion of this
          community; they do not believe that we are the Saints of the Most
          High God, yet there is something which they cannot comprehend,
          but still they think there is something behind the curtain, and
          they cannot understand it; still they have a good deal of dubiety
          upon their minds respecting the Latter-day Saints, and why is it
          so? It is because there are a great many things which they cannot
          comprehend. They see us united; they are made sensible of our
          prosperity; they see we proceed with authority and with
          confidence to do whatever we have to do, and they cannot fathom
          it; they cannot understand how we hold together in such perfect
          unity; our whole organization to them is one entire mystery, and
          ever has been to the sectarian world.
          And what is the reason that mankind are so slow to understand?
          Why Jesus, who had compassion on the people in his teachings,
          compared the kingdom of God to a little child, and said, "Suffer
          little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such
          is the kingdom of heaven." All men have to become as little
          children before they can understand the principles of, or enter
          the kingdom of heaven, and the Christian world are not willing to
          humble themselves, and become as little children; therefore they
          cannot enter the kingdom of God. This is the reason that they
          cannot comprehend this people, and the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints. A strange work, a marvel and a wonder it
          appears to them.
          What is said about the Spirit of the Lord that is possessed by
          the Saints? We read that it shall lead and guide you into all
          truth, and further, that it shall show (the Saints) things past,
          and things which are to come. But the word at large cannot see
          these things, and they never will until they have taken the same
          steps that we have taken. Heavenly things cannot be comprehended
          only by the Spirit of the living God, but says Paul, the Spirit
          of God discerneth all things, even the deep things of God; the
          natural mind cannot comprehend.
          Well, then, we can see that it is the duty as well as the
          privilege of every Latter-day Saint to live in the Spirit of the
          Lord, for "Mormonism" is to rule our actions, and every man and
          woman has got to be wide awake. They have got to do as brother
          Kimball used to say, sleep with one eye open and one leg out of
          bed. I have seen and comprehended for the last few months that
          the Latter-day Saints have now got to double their diligence;
          yes, I can feel it to the bottom of my soul; we have to learn to
          appreciate the blessings of the Almighty more fully than we have
          heretofore appreciated them. The Lord will be honored, and He
          will not be angry with any, but those who refuse to acknowledge
          His hand in all things; we have got to acknowledge His hand in
          all things, and feel it as well as to say it, and to show it by
          our works.
          We have had several expulsions or drivings through mobocracy, and
          in all these things we are called upon to acknowledge the hand of
          the Lord. It takes us all the time to perform in faithfulness the
          duties of our several respective callings. It is like an old
          blacksmith's bellows, the very moment that you cease to blow, the
          fire goes down, and especially the fires of those that burn cedar
          coal; and those who use the blacksmith's bellows, know how long
          it takes to kindle up the fire, that is, when they have got the
          same material on hand; and it is just so with the Gospel of
          Christ. If we quench the Spirit, and do not magnify the Lord by
          our works and by our faith, that which is in us soon goes out,
          and we die a natural death in the kingdom. Then, if we wish to
          obtain influence again we have to become humble, come forth and
          get re-baptized for the remission of sins, and have hands laid on
          for the gift of the Holy Ghost, and obey it strictly in all
          things, before we can get the zeal and flame of the Gospel again
          to burn in our souls.
          We have learned another lesson too, at least I have, viz., that
          the driving part of "Mormonism," the burnings, mobbings, and
          oppressions were all very necessary to the bringing this people
          to an understanding of their true position before God. All that
          has ever come upon us has served a good purpose and was very
          essential to the condemnation of our enemies.
          For the last few months I have been travelling considerably
          through the settlements of the Territory, preaching to the
          brethren, and instructing them in their duties. A good spirit
          prevailed in most of the places I visited, and I told the
          brethren that it was not the inner man that they had to contend
          with and look after just now, so much as it was the things out of
          doors, and I promised them that if they would all be agreed in
          opening their farms, making their fences around their farms, and
          big fields, and take good care of their flocks and herds, and
          keep up good schools, pay their tithing, and attend to all the
          ordinances of the Gospel, live as Saints of God ought to live, I
          would promise them, in the name of Israel's God, that when they
          assembled in the congregations of the Saints, the gifts and
          blessings of the Gospel would be more copiously poured out upon
          them, that they should have power to heal the sick, speak with
          tongues, prophesy, and they should have a mighty influence of the
          Holy Spirit in their midst. I felt to promise them these things
          in faith, for it is just so everywhere when people live in
          humility before God.
          How pleasing it is when we can meet a brother here, or there, and
          can feel that the genial influences of the Holy Spirit of God are
          with him! When we feel so united, so much of one heart and one
          mind, that we can buy and sell, trade, traffic, and do all that
          we have to do in the name of the Lord, do all with an honest
          heart before God--then, when we feel this way, we can have the
          Spirit of the Lord in coming before a congregation to qualify us
          to edify the people. This is but a small portion of our religion,
          but this is very good. It is obedience that will prepare us to be
          exalted in the kingdom of our God.
          There is a monitor in the heart of every individual, and a man or
          woman who will obey its dictations, and whose intentions are to
          do right all the day long, need not be afraid of anything, for
          they will have confidence; they shall have confidence before God;
          they shall have confidence before the Saints, and be enabled to
          claim the promises, and there is no power that can hinder; there
          is no power that can stand against them, but they shall prevail;
          and why shall they not prevail? Why the Psalmist says--"No good
          thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly." (Let us
          ask a blessing on the cup.)
          I feel first rate, brethren and sisters, and I feel to bless you,
          and my daily prayer is that the Saints of God may be blessed with
          wisdom, with knowledge, and with all spiritual blessings, as well
          as with temporal prosperity, and I say they shall be blessed, and
          they shall be comforted. And let us be reminded continually of
          the instructions given last Sunday: "Fret not your gizzards." We
          are first-rate, and the grasshoppers are doing first-rate too,
          and I expect that the Lord will be as good as His word, for we
          are the Latter-day Saints; we are the only people that
          acknowledge God and Prophets and the authority of the Priesthood
          upon the earth, and you know what the Scriptures say: "He that
          receiveth a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a
          prophet's reward; and he that receiveth a righteous man in the
          name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward."
          We all want the Prophet's blessing, and we all want every good
          man's blessing, and the blessing of all this community.
          When our hearts are drawn out before the Lord, we feel well, we
          feel all right; but when we get to fretting our gizzards about
          this, that, and the other, and begin to say, well, these rewards,
          these blessings do not appear to us as we looked for them; we do
          not have them in our assemblies as much as we ought to have.
          How is it, says one, that the Lord is going to kill the grain,
          and thus cause a famine to come? What is the reason the Lord
          allows the grasshoppers to come and eat the grain? Why, we read
          in the Scriptures that judgment begins at the house of God, and I
          expect the Saints may be tried a good deal more yet before they
          become perfect.
          There was one glorious promise that cheered my heart; I mean the
          words which fell from the lips of President Young a short time
          ago. Says he, "I don't know that there will be any surplus grain,
          neither do I wish there to be any particularly, but we have put
          in seed, and we shall have harvest." He promised us a harvest,
          and my faith is that we shall have something to eat and drink,
          and we shall not starve or want for bread. If we receive that
          promise as coming form a Prophet, we shall be blessed, and get
          what was promised; I calculate to have it; I also expect that the
          Lord will send the rain just as He pleases, and make all things
          subserve the interests of His kingdom. I expect to claim the
          blessings of the Almighty by faith, prayer, and diligence.
          Well, now, I know that you are as willing as I am, to have those
          blessings promised. We want rain, and we all feel very anxious to
          have some, and we would like to know when we are to have it.
          Well, I have made up my mind for it to rain some time during the
          present week. I have had no particular promise, but I have had it
          in my mind that it will rain within a week. If it should not, it
          won't hurt me at all.
          I have thought of it in another way; probably the Lord may send a
          little famine; and if he does, there will be a design in it.
          There may be somebody coming here, a few curses in the shape of
          men, to eat up all our surplus grain; and perhaps, if they should
          hear that the drought and the grasshoppers are eating up our
          crops, they may be led to say, we are not going to be starved to
          death with those poor "Mormons."
          We are here sitting under our own Bowery, none daring to molest
          or make us afraid. The kingdom must be built up, an it belongs to
          this people to do it; it is our salvation to bear it off, and if
          we do not bear it off, and do not act as instruments in the hands
          of the Lord in accomplishing the work, our glory will be clipped;
          the moment that we cease our exertions, that moment we begin to
          decline. Every man and every woman that is brought into the
          covenant take this upon them, to bear a part in this kingdom;
          this is the right of all, it is the privilege and duty of all
          Saints. Every man is called upon to do right, to work
          righteousness all the day long.
          I will say in conclusion, let us pray for the peace and
          prosperity of the Presidency that are absent from us today, and
          of those who are with them. I will not take up more time, but
          will give way, as I wish to hear some remarks from Elder Hyde,
          who is about to leave for Carson Valley.
          May God bless us all, for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, August 8, 1852
                            Brigham Young, August 8, 1852
                            AND ALL THAT PERTAINS TO IT.
                       A Discourse by President Brigham Young, 
                            Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                        Great Salt Lake City, August 8, 1852.
          I will read a revelation given to Joseph Smith, junior, and
          Sidney Rigdon. But previous to my doing so, and commencing upon
          the subject that I expect to lay before the people this morning,
          I will say to them, my understanding with regard to preaching the
          Gospel of Salvation is this: there is but one discourse to be
          preached to all the children of Adam; and that discourse should
          be believed by them, and lived up to. To commence, continue, and
          finish this Gospel sermon, will require all the time that is
          allotted to man, to the earth, and all things upon it, in their
          mortal state; that is my idea with regard to preaching. No man is
          able to set before a congregation all the items of the Gospel, in
          this life, and continue these items to their termination, for
          this mortal life is too short. It is inseparably connected, one
          part with the other, in all the doctrines that have been revealed
          to man, which are now called the various doctrines of
          Christianity, of which all the professors of religion believe a
          portion; but severally reject, or desire to reject, other
          portions of the truth; each sect or individual, taking to
          themselves portions of the Bible, portions of the doctrine of
          salvation, that are the most pleasing to them, rejecting all the
          rest, and mingling these doctrines with the tenets of men.
          But let a Gospel sermon be preached, wherein all the principles
          of salvation are embodied, and we will acknowledge, at the end of
          the mortality of this earth, and all things created upon it--at
          the closing up scene, at the final consummation of all things
          that have been from the commencement of the creation of the
          world, and the peopling of it unto the latest generation of Adam
          and Eve, and the final finishing up of the work of Christ--I say,
          we shall acknowledge that there is the Gospel sermon, and that it
          could not be preached to finite beings, in one short life.
          I make these remarks for the purpose of extricating myself from
          the arduous task of undertaking to set before this congregation,
          every item of the doctrine of salvation, in all of their various
          significations, as they are presented in this life, and according
          to our understanding. I make these introductory remarks to free
          myself from the great task of finishing the discourse I shall
          commence. I did not expect to finish it; I do not expect to see
          the end of it, until the winding up scene. I do not even commence
          at the beginning of it; I only catch at it, where it comes to me,
          in the 19th century, for it has been before me; it is from
          eternity to eternity.
          Christ is the author of this Gospel, of this earth, of men and
          women, of all the posterity of Adam and Eve, and of every living
          creature that lives upon the face of the earth, that flies in the
          heavens, that swims in the waters, or dwells in the field. Christ
          is the author of salvation to all this creation; to all things
          pertaining to this terrestrial globe we occupy.
          This, however, would be contrary to our prejudices, to admit for
          a moment, that Christ, in his redeeming properties, has power to
          redeem any of the works of his hands--any other living creature,
          but the children of Adam and Eve--this would not be in accordance
          with our prepossessed feelings, and long-imbibed prejudices,
          perhaps; but he has redeemed the earth; he has redeemed mankind
          and every living thing that moves upon it; and he will finish his
          Gospel discourse when he overcomes his enemies, and puts his last
          enemy under his feet--when he destroys death, and him that hath
          the power of it--when he has raised up this kingdom, and finished
          his work which the Father gave him to do, and presents it to his
          Father, saying, "I have done the work, I have finished it; I have
          not only created the world, but I have redeemed it; I have
          watched over it, and I have given to those intelligent beings,
          that you have created by me, their agency, and it has been held
          with perfection to every creature of intelligence, to every grade
          of mankind; I have preserved inviolate their agency; I have
          watched over them, and overruled all their actions, and held in
          my hand the destinies of men; and I have finished up my Gospel
          sermon," as he presents the finished work to his Father. 
          It takes just such a character as the Savior, to preach one
          Gospel discourse; and this was commenced with the commencement of
          all men upon this earth or any other; and it will never close
          until the winding up scene, and all is finished, and the kingdom
          is presented to the Father.
          I expect only to look into some portions of it, as it comes to me
          in the 19th century of the Christian era.
          I will now read a revelation that was given to Joseph Smith,
          junior, and Sidney Rigdon, called:
                                      A VISION.
                    "1. Hear O ye heavens, and give ear O earth, and
                    rejoice, ye inhabitants thereof, for the Lord is God,
                    and beside him there is no Savior: great is his wisdom,
                    marvellous are his ways, and the extent of his doings
                    none can find out; his purposes fail not, neither are
                    there any who can stay his hand; from eternity to
                    eternity he is the same, and his years never fail.
                    "2. For thus saith the Lord, I, the Lord, am merciful
                    and gracious unto those who fear me, and delight to
                    honour those who serve me in righteousness and in truth
                    unto the end, great shall be their reward and eternal
                    shall be their glory; and to them will I reveal all
                    mysteries; yea, all the hidden mysteries of my kingdom
                    from days of old, and for ages to come will I make
                    known unto them the good pleasure of my will concerning
                    all things pertaining to my kingdom; yea, even the
                    wonders of eternity shall they know, and things to come
                    will I show them, even the things of many generations;
                    and their wisdom shall be great, and their
                    understanding reach to heaven: and before them the
                    wisdom of the wise shall perish, and the understanding
                    of the prudent shall come to naught; for by my Spirit
                    will I enlighten them, and by my power will I make
                    known unto them the secrets of my will; yea, even those
                    things which eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor yet
                    entered into the heart of man.
                    "3. We, Joseph Smith, junior, and Sidney Rigdon, being
                    in the Spirit of the sixteenth of February, in the year
                    of our Lord, one thousand eight hundred and thirty-two,
                    by the power of the Spirit our eyes were opened and our
                    understandings were enlightened, so as to see and
                    understand the things of God--even those things which
                    were from the beginning before the world was, which
                    were ordained of the Father, through his only begotten
                    Son, who was in the bosom of the Father, even from the
                    beginning, of whom we bear record, and the record which
                    we bear is the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ,
                    who is the Son, whom we saw and with whom we conversed
                    in the heavenly vision; for while we were doing the
                    work of translation, which the Lord had appointed unto
                    us, we came to the twenty-ninth verse of the fifth
                    chapter of John, which was given unto us as follows:
                    speaking of the resurrection of the dead, concerning
                    those who shall hear the voice of the Son of man, and
                    shall come forth; they who have done good in the
                    resurrection of the just, and they who have done evil
                    in the resurrection of the unjust. Now this caused us
                    to marvel, for it was given unto us of the Spirit; and
                    while we meditated upon these things, the Lord touched
                    the eyes of our understandings and they were opened,
                    and the glory of the Lord shone round about; and we
                    beheld the glory of the Son, on the right hand of the
                    Father, and received of his fulness; and saw the holy
                    angels, and they who are sanctified before his throne,
                    worshipping God, and the Lamb, who worship him forever
                    and ever. And now, after the many testimonies which
                    have been given of him, this is the testimony last of
                    all, which we give of him, that he lives; for we saw
                    him, even on the right hand of God, and we heard the
                    voice bearing record that he is the only begotten of
                    the Father--that by him, and through him, and of him
                    the worlds are and were created, and the inhabitants
                    thereof are begotten sons and daughters unto God. And
                    this we saw also, and bear record, that an angel of God
                    who was in authority in the presence of God, who
                    rebelled against the only begotten Son, whom the Father
                    loved, and who was in the bosom of the Father--was
                    thrust down from the presence of God and the Son, and
                    was called Perdition, for the heavens wept over him--he
                    was Lucifer, a son of the morning. And while we were
                    yet in the Spirit, the Lord commanded us that we should
                    write the vision, for we beheld Satan, that old
                    serpent--even the devil--who rebelled against God, and
                    sought to take the kingdom of our God, and his Christ,
                    wherefore he maketh war with the saints of God, and
                    encompasses them round about. And we saw a vision of
                    the sufferings of those with whom he made war and
                    overcame, for thus came the voice of the Lord unto us.
                    "4. Thus saith the Lord, concerning all those who know
                    my power, and have been made partakers thereof, and
                    suffered themselves, through the power of the devil, to
                    be overcome, and to deny the truth and defy my
                    power--they are they who are the sons of perdition, of
                    whom I say that it had been better for them never to
                    have been born, for they are vessels of wrath, doomed
                    to suffer the wrath of God, with the devil and his
                    angels in eternity; concerning whom I have said there
                    is no forgiveness in this world nor in the world to
                    come, having denied the Holy Spirit after having
                    received it, and having denied the only begotten Son of
                    the Father--having crucified him unto themselves, and
                    put him to an open shame. These are they who shall go
                    away into the lake of fire and brimstone, with the
                    devil and his angels, and the only ones on whom the
                    second death shall have any power; yea, verily, the
                    only ones who shall not be redeemed in the due time of
                    the Lord, after the sufferings of his wrath; for all
                    the rest shall be brought forth by the resurrection of
                    the dead, through the triumph and the glory of the
                    Lamb, who was slain, who was in the bosom of the Father
                    before the worlds were made. And this is the gospel,
                    the glad tidings which the voice out of the heavens
                    bore record unto us, that he came into the world, even
                    Jesus, to be crucified for the world, and to bear the
                    sins of the world, and to sanctify the world, and to
                    cleanse it form all unrighteousness; that through him
                    all might be saved whom the Father had put into his
                    power and made by him, who glorifies the Father, and
                    saves all the works of his hands, except those sons of
                    perdition, who deny the Son after the Father has
                    revealed him; wherefore he saves all except them; they
                    shall go away into everlasting punishment, which is
                    endless punishment, which is eternal punishment, to
                    reign with the devil and his angels in eternity, where
                    their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched,
                    which is their torment; and the end thereof, neither
                    the place thereof, nor their torment, no man knows,
                    neither was it revealed, neither is, neither will be
                    revealed unto man, except to them who are made
                    partakers thereof: nevertheless I the Lord show it by
                    vision unto many, but straightway shut it up again;
                    wherefore the end, the width, the height, the depth,
                    and the misery thereof, they understand not, neither
                    any man except them who are ordained unto this
                    condemnation. And we heard the voice, saying, write the
                    vision, for lo! this is the end of the vision of the
                    sufferings of the ungodly!
                    "5. And again, we bear record, for we saw and heard,
                    and this is the testimony of the gospel of Christ,
                    concerning them who come forth in the resurrection of
                    the just; they are they who received the testimony of
                    Jesus, and believed on his name and were baptized after
                    the manner of his burial, being buried in the water in
                    his name, and this according to the commandment which
                    he has given, that by keeping the commandments they
                    might be washed and cleansed from all their sins, and
                    receive the Holy Spirit by the laying on of the hands
                    of him who is ordained and sealed unto this power, and
                    who overcome by faith, and are sealed by the Holy
                    Spirit of promise, which the Father sheds forth upon
                    all those who are just and true. They are they who are
                    the church of the first-born. They are they into whose
                    hands the Father has given all things--they are they
                    who are priests and kings, who have received of his
                    fulness, and of his glory, and are priests of the Most
                    High, after the order of Melchizedek, which was after
                    the order of Enoch, which was after the order of the
                    only begotten Son; wherefore, as it is written, they
                    are Gods, even the sons of God--wherefore all things
                    are theirs, whether life or death, or things present,
                    or things to come, all are theirs and they are Christ's
                    and Christ is God's; and they shall overcome all
                    things; wherefore let no man glory in man, but rather
                    let him glory in God, who shall subdue all enemies
                    under his feet--these shall dwell in the presence of
                    God and his Christ forever and ever. These are they
                    whom he shall bring with him, when he shall come in the
                    clouds of heaven, to reign on the earth over his
                    people. These are they who shall have part in the first
                    resurrection. These are they who shall come forth in
                    the resurrection of the just. These are they who are
                    come unto mount Zion, and unto the city of the living
                    God, the heavenly place, the holiest of all. These are
                    they who have come to an innumerable company of angels,
                    to the general assembly and church of Enoch, and of the
                    first-born. These are they whose names are written in
                    heaven, where God and Christ are the judge of all.
                    These are they who are just men made perfect through
                    Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, who wrought out
                    this perfect atonement through the shedding of his own
                    blood. These are they whose bodies are celestial, whose
                    glory is that of the sun, even the glory of God, the
                    highest of all, whose glory the sun of the firmament is
                    written of as being typical.
                    "6. And again, we saw the terrestrial world, and behold
                    and lo, these are they who are of the terrestrial,
                    whose glory differs from that of the church of the
                    first-born, who have received the fulness of the
                    Father, even as that of the moon differs from the sun
                    of the firmament. Behold, these are they who died
                    without law, and also they who are the spirits of men
                    kept in prison, whom the Son visited, and preached the
                    gospel unto them, that they might be judged according
                    to men in the flesh, who received not the testimony of
                    Jesus in the flesh, but afterwards received it. These
                    are they who are honorable men of the earth, who are
                    blinded by the craftiness of men. These are they who
                    receive of his glory, but not of his fulness. These are
                    they who receive of the presence of the Son, but not of
                    the fulness of the Father; wherefore they are bodies
                    terrestrial, and not bodies celestial, and differ in
                    glory as the moon differs from the sun. These are they
                    who are not valiant in the testimony of Jesus;
                    wherefore they obtained not the crown over the kingdom
                    of our God. And now this is the end of the vision which
                    we saw of the terrestrial, that the Lord commanded us
                    to write while we were yet in the Spirit.
                    "7. And again, we saw the glory of the telestial, which
                    glory is that of the lesser, even as the glory of the
                    stars differs from that of the glory of the moon in the
                    firmament. These are they who received not the gospel
                    of Christ, neither the testimony of Jesus. These are
                    they who deny not the Holy Spirit. These are they who
                    are thrust down to hell. These are they who shall not
                    be redeemed from the devil, until the last
                    resurrection, until the Lord, even Christ the Lamb
                    shall have finished his work. These are they who
                    receive not of his fulness in the eternal world, but of
                    the Holy Spirit through the ministration of the
                    terrestrial; and the terrestrial through the
                    ministration of the celestial; and also the telestial
                    receive it of the administering of angels who are
                    appointed to minister for them, or who are appointed to
                    be ministering spirits for them, for they shall be
                    heirs of salvation. And thus we saw in the heavenly
                    vision, the glory of the telestial, which surpasses all
                    understanding, and no man knows it except him to whom
                    God has revealed it. And thus we saw the glory of the
                    terrestrial, which excels in all things the glory of
                    the telestial, even in glory, and in power, and in
                    might, and in dominion. And thus we saw the glory of
                    the celestial, which excels in all things--where God,
                    even the Father, reigns upon his throne forever and
                    ever; before whose throne all things bow in humble
                    reverence and give him glory forever and ever. They who
                    dwell in his presence are the church of the first-born,
                    and they see as they are seen, and know as they are
                    known, having received of his fulness and of his grace;
                    and he makes them equal in power, and in might, and in
                    dominion. And the glory of the celestial is one, even
                    as the glory of the sun is one. And the glory of the
                    terrestrial is one, even as the glory of the moon is
                    one. And the glory of the telestial is one, even as the
                    gory of the stars is one, for as one star differs from
                    another star in glory, even so differs one from another
                    in glory in the telestial world; for these are they who
                    are of Paul, and of Apollos, and of Cephas. These are
                    they who say they are some of one and some of
                    another--some of Christ, and some of John, and some of
                    Moses, and some of Elias, and some of Esaias, and some
                    of Isaiah, and some of Enoch; but received not the
                    gospel, neither the testimony of Jesus, neither the
                    prophets, neither the everlasting covenant. Last of
                    all, these all are they who will not be gathered with
                    the saints, to be caught up unto the church of the
                    first born, and received into the cloud. These are they
                    who are liars, and sorcerers, and adulterers, and
                    whoremongers, and whosoever loves and makes a lie.
                    These are they who suffer the wrath of God on the
                    earth. These are they who suffer the vengeance of
                    eternal fire. These are they who are cast down to hell
                    and suffer the wrath of Almighty God, until the fulness
                    of times when Christ shall have subdued all enemies
                    under his feet, and shall have perfected his work, when
                    he shall deliver up the kingdom, and present it unto
                    the Father spotless, saying--I have overcome and have
                    trodden the winepress alone, even the winepress of the
                    fierceness of the wrath of Almighty God. Then shall he
                    be crowned with the crown of his glory, to sit on the
                    throne of his power to reign for ever and ever. But
                    behold, and lo, we saw the glory and the inhabitants of
                    the telestial world, that they were as innumerable as
                    the stars in the firmament of heaven, or as the sand
                    upon the sea shore, and heard the voice of the Lord,
                    saying--these all shall bow the knee, and every tongue
                    shall confess to him who sits upon the throne forever
                    and ever; for they shall be judged according to their
                    works, and every man shall receive according to his own
                    works, his own dominion, in the mansions which are
                    prepared, and they shall be servants of the Most High,
                    but where God and Christ dwell they cannot come, worlds
                    without end. This is the end of the vision which we
                    saw, which we were commanded to write while we were yet
                    in the Spirit. 
                    "8. But great and marvellous are the works of the Lord,
                    and the mysteries of his kingdom which he showed unto
                    us, which surpasses all understanding in glory, and in
                    might, and in dominion, which he commanded us we should
                    not write while we were yet in the Spirit, and are not
                    lawful for man to utter; neither is man capable to make
                    them known, for they are only to be seen and understood
                    by the power of the Holy Spirit, which God bestows on
                    those who love him, and purify themselves before him;
                    to whom he grants this privilege of seeing and knowing
                    for themselves; that through the power and
                    manifestation of the Spirit, while in the flesh, they
                    may be able to bear his presence in the world of glory.
                    And to God and the Lamb be glory, and honor, and
                    dominion forever and ever. Amen."
          These are the words of the vision that were given to Joseph and
          Sidney. My mind rests upon this subject, upon this portion of the
          Gospel of salvation; and has done so, more or less, for a great
          many years. The circumstances that surround me, almost daily;
          things that I see and hear, cause my mind to reflect upon the
          situation of mankind; create in me an anxiety to find out--to
          learn why things are as they are; why it is that the Lord should
          build a globe like this earthly ball, and set it in motion--then
          people it with intelligent beings, and afterwards cast a vail
          over the whole, and hide Himself from His creation--conceal from
          them the wisdom, the glory, the truth, the excellency, the true
          principles of His character, and His design in forming the earth.
          Why cast this vail over them, and leave them in total
          darkness--leave them to be carried away with erroneous doctrines,
          and exposed to every species of wickedness that would render them
          obnoxious to the presence of God, who placed them upon the face
          of this earth. My daily experience and observation cause me to
          enquire into these things. Can I attribute all to the wisdom of
          Him that has organized this earth, and peopled it with
          intelligent beings, and see the people honestly desiring to do
          right all the day long, and would not lift hand or heel against
          the Almighty, but would rather have their heads taken from their
          bodies than dishonor him? And yet, we hear one crying on the
          right hand, this is the law of God, this is the right way;
          another upon the left, saying the same; another in the front; and
          another in the rear; and to every point of the compass, hundreds
          and thousands of them, and all differing one from another.
          They do the best they can, I admit. See the inhabitants of the
          earth, how they differ in their prejudices, and in their
          religion. What is the religion of the day? What are all the civil
          laws and governments of the day? They are merely traditions,
          without a single exception. Do the people realize this--that it
          is the force of their education that makes right and wrong, with
          them? It is not the line which the Lord has drawn out; it is not
          the law which the Lord has given them; it is not the
          righteousness which is according to the character of Him who has
          created all things, and by His own law governs and controls all
          things; but by the prejudice of education--the prepossessed
          feeling that is begotten in the hearts of the children of men, by
          surrounding objects; they being creatures of circumstances, who
          are governed and controlled by them more or less. When they,
          thus, are led to differ one from another, it begets in them
          different feelings; it causes them to differ in principle,
          object, and pursuit; in their customs, religion, laws, and
          domestic affairs, in all human life; and yet every one, of every
          nation there is under heaven, considers that they are the best
          people; that they are the most righteous; have the most
          intelligent and best of men for their priests and rulers, and are
          the nearest to the very thing the Lord Almighty requires of them.
          There is no nation upon this earth that does not entertain these
          Suppose a query arising in the minds of the different sects of
          the human family--"Do not the Latter-day Saints think they are
          the best people under the whole heavens, like ourselves?" Yes,
          exactly; I take that to myself. The Latter-day Saints have the
          same feelings as the rest of the people; they think also, that
          they have more wisdom and knowledge, and are the nearest right of
          any people upon the face of the earth.
          Suppose you visit China, and mingle among the "celestial" beings
          there; you will find a people who hold in scorn and ridicule
          every other people, and especially those of Christendom. They
          consider themselves more holy, more righteous, more upright, more
          honest; filled with more intelligence; they consider themselves
          better educated; better in every respect, in all their civil and
          religious rites than any other nation under heaven.
          Suppose you next visit Spain; there you will find the mother, and
          grandmother, and great-grandmother of all the Christian
          denominations upon the face of the earth--though these are but a
          scanty proportion of mankind, compared with all the inhabitants
          upon the face of the globe. I suppose not one twelfth, or one
          sixteenth part of the inhabitants of the earth, believe in Jesus
          Christ--and probably not one thirtieth part of them.
          Take the mother of modern Christianity; go into Italy--to Rome,
          the seat of her government, and we find that they also consider
          themselves to be the best people in the world--the nearest the
          Lord and the path of right--more so than any other people upon
          the face of the earth.
          Then visit the first Protestant church that was organized, and
          they consider themselves nearer right than their mother, or any
          of their sisters. You may thus follow it down to the last
          reformer upon the earth; and then step back to those we call
          heathen; to all that ever lived, from the place where Noah landed
          his ark, to the building of the tower of Babel; and in their
          dispersion, trace their footsteps to the islands and continents,
          under the whole heavens, and you cannot find a people that do not
          believe they are nearest right in their religion--more so than
          their neighbors--and have the best form of civil government.
          Suppose you call upon the aborigines of our country, here, these
          wild Indians; we call them savages; we call them heathens. Let
          yourselves be divested of prejudice; let it be entirely forgotten
          and out of the question, together with all your education, and
          former notions of things, your religious tenets, &c., and let
          your minds be in open vision before the Almighty, seeing things
          as they are, you will find that that very people know just as
          much about the Lord as anybody else; like the rest of mankind,
          they step into a train of ideas and ordinances, peculiar to the
          prejudices of their education.
          All this I admit; and I admit it upon the resources of my own
          knowledge that I have pertaining to the inhabitants of the earth;
          this, also, every person knows, who is acquainted with the
          different customs and religions of different countries.
          Let me step over into England, and carry with me my Yankee
          notions and manners, and I should be a burlesque to them. Let an
          Englishman pass over into Scotland, and speak and act according
          to English customs, it would differ so far from them, that they
          would laugh at him. Let a Scotchman or an Englishman go to
          Ireland, and it would be just the same. This difference of
          feeling, sentiment, and custom, exists in those countries that
          are so near each other. If you go to France, you find that they
          walk over the customs and manners of England, as unworthy of
          their notice. Should you thus go, from one people to another,
          throughout all nations, you would find that they differ in their
          religions and national customs, according to the teachings of
          their mother, and the priest. In this manner the consciences of
          mankind are formed--by the education they receive. You know this
          to be true, by your own experience.
          That which you once considered, perhaps, to be a non-essential in
          religion, you now consider to be very essential. That which you
          once esteemed to be unbecoming in society, has become so
          interwoven in your feelings, by being accustomed to it, that it
          ultimately appears quite rational to you.
          When you survey the inhabitants of the world, you will find that
          the religious tenets of all nations have sprung from their
          education; consequently, if we should summon the whole earth
          before us, and strictly examine them, we should find that the
          nations of the earth, as far as they know and understand, are
          doing about the best they know how; they are just about as near
          right as they know how to be. 
          These tribes of Indians differ from one another in their
          sentiments and feelings; they war with each other, and try to
          destroy each other; and why do they do it? Why, "you are not as
          righteous as I am, and I want to bring you over to my holy
          faith." You see these bands of Indians doing these things, and
          you spurn the idea. Suppose you extend the principle, and carry
          it among the greatest nations of the earth; and you would see
          Queen Victoria, one of the most powerful sovereigns, sitting at
          the head of one of the most powerful nations upon the earth,
          sending her forces among these "celestial" ones, battering down
          the walls of China, bombarding their cities, throwing confusion
          into their States, and destroying thousands of their
          people--extending their sway of empire over India, And why all
          this? "To subdue you heathens, and bring you over to our more
          enlightened customs and religion."
          Does one nation rise up to war with another without having
          motives, and those which they will substantiate as being good and
          sufficient? Will one people rise up to war with another people,
          except the motive that moves them is of a nature to justify them
          in their own minds and judgment for doing so? No. There is not a
          people upon the face of this earth that would do so; they all
          calculate to do that which seemeth good to them.
          There are the Jews--and recollect that they are a very religious
          people to this day; a more religious people never lived than
          they, that is, the tribe of Judah, and the half tribe of Benjamin
          that were left in Jerusalem--they are as tenacious as any people
          can be, to this day, for the religion of their fathers; and where
          can you see them among the nations of the earth, without seeing a
          hunted, driven, and persecuted people? The laws of nations have
          been framed for the express purpose of killing and destroying
          them from the earth. Yes, in the midst of nations that profess to
          adhere to the doctrines of Christianity--that legislate, and make
          laws, and put them in force--laws have been made to exterminate
          them; then cry out against them, and raise mobs to persecute and
          destroy, and clear the earth of the Jews. Notwithstanding all
          this, will they forsake their religion? No. They have suffered
          themselves to be stoned in the streets of the cities, their
          houses to be burned over their heads; but will they forsake their
          religion? No; they will perish rather.
          The Christians say they are wrong; and the "Holy Roman Catholic
          Church" would have killed every one of them, hundreds of years
          ago, had not God promised by His holy Prophets, that they should
          remain and multiply. They have been distributed, dispersed,
          scattered abroad among the nations of the earth, to fulfil that,
          and many more of the sayings of their Prophets: and they are as
          tenacious, this day, with regard to their religion, as in the
          days of Moses, and are as anxiously expecting, and looking for
          the Messiah.
          Conscience is nothing else but the result of the education and
          traditions of the inhabitants of the earth. These are interwoven
          with their feelings, and are like a cloak that perfectly envelops
          them, in the capacity of societies, neighborhoods, people, or
          individuals; they frame that kind of government and religion, and
          pursue that course collectively or individually, that seemeth
          good to themselves.
          When we look at the whole creation, and that, too, from the days
          of Adam, down to this time, what do we see? According to the
          reading of the Bible, the sayings of Jesus Christ, of all the
          ancient Prophets, and of the Apostles, every soul, every son and
          daughter of Adam and Eve, that have lived from the day of
          transgression to this time; and that will live from this time
          henceforth, so long as any of the posterity of Adam and Eve shall
          continue upon the earth, unless they know Jesus Christ, and his
          Father, and receive the Holy Ghost, and be prepared to dwell with
          the Father and the Son; become acquainted with them, and converse
          with them, they will all be damned; every soul of them will be
          sent to hell.
          And what do we see on the back of this, I ask? We see that all
          Christendom are ready to pounce upon them that believe in Jesus
          Christ, and are trying to attain to this knowledge, and grind
          them down, and send them down, and continue to bear upon them,
          and crowd them down, down to the bottom of the "bottomless pit,"
          and throw upon them pig metal, and lead, to keep them down. This
          is what we see; and all creation may see it also, if they will
          open their eyes.
          I shall not undertake to prove from the Bible every thing I say,
          yet it is all there.
          With regard to the peculiar and varied formations of the
          religions of the day, I will say, we can see in them the first
          strong lines of the religion of Christ drawn out, which have
          existed among them from the days of the apostacy from the true
          order, to the present day.
          If you could just humble yourselves until your eyes should be
          enlightened by the Spirit of God, by the spirit of intelligence,
          you may understand things the world cannot see; and understand
          that it is the privilege of every person to know the exact
          situation of the inhabitants of the earth, for themselves. The
          ancient Apostles saw it; Jesus Christ knew all about it; and the
          Prophets before them prophesied, and wrote, and preached about
          what was then upon the earth, what had been, and what would be.
          The inquiry might be made, "Can any person in the world prophesy,
          unless he possess the spirit of it?" No, they cannot. They may
          prophesy lies by the spirit of lies, by the inspiration of a
          lying spirit, but can they see and understand things in the
          future, so as to prophesy truly of things to come, unless they
          are endowed with the spirit of prophecy? No. Is this the
          privilege of every person? It is. Permit me to remark here--this
          very people called Latter-day Saints have got to be brought to
          the spot where they will be trained (if they have not been there
          already,) where they will humble themselves, work righteousness,
          glorify God, and keep His commandments. If they have not got
          undivided feelings, they will be chastised until they have them;
          not only until every one of them shall see for themselves, and
          prophesy for themselves, have visions to themselves, but be made
          acquainted with all the principles and laws necessary for them to
          know, so as to supersede the necessity of anybody teaching them.
          Is not the time to come when I shall not say to my neighbor, know
          the Lord, for he will know Him as well as I do? This is the very
          people that have to come to it, sooner or later. Can we come to
          it? We can. If you are industrious and faithful scholars in the
          school you have entered into, you shall get lessons one after
          another, and continue on until you can see and understand the
          spirit of prophecy and revelation, which can be understood
          according to a systematic principle, and can be demonstrated to a
          person's understanding as scientifically as Professor Pratt, who
          sits directly behind me, can an astronomical problem.
          I do not purpose to go into that, or to say anything to the
          brethren or to this people with regard to their daily walk and
          actions. I proposed to view the inhabitants of the earth and
          their situation, that you and I might understand that the Lord
          Almighty has a hand in all these matters; that the Lord is on the
          earth, and fills immensity; He is everywhere; He dictates
          governors and kings, and manages the whole affairs of the nations
          of the earth, and has from the days of Adam, and will until the
          winding up scene, and the work shall be finished.
          There is only one Gospel sermon, recollect, brethren and sisters,
          and the time that is required to preach it is from the day of the
          fall, or from the day when Adam and his wife Eve came here upon
          this planet, and from that time until Jesus Christ has subdued
          the last enemy, which is death, and put all things under his
          feet, and wound up all things pertaining to this earth. Then the
          Gospel will have been preached, and brought up and presented, and
          the effects thereof, to the Father.
          Now what shall we do with the inhabitants of the earth? Their
          true situation can be presented to your minds, if you will calmly
          reflect. Every person, whether they have travelled or not, if
          they are acquainted with the history of nations, can discover at
          once the variety there is of religions, customs, laws, and
          governments; and if you will apply your hearts, you can
          understand the cause of this variety of effects.
          Again, there are the nations that have lived before us; what
          shall we do with them? And what is their situation in the other
          world? What have we now to say of them? I can tell it in short.
          We are preaching to them the Gospel of salvation--to the
          dead--through those who have lived in this dispensation; and it
          is a part and parcel of the great Gospel discourse, a little here
          and a little there, that is necessary for the nation unto whom
          given. With regard to doctrine, rules, customs, and many
          sacraments, they are meted out to the inhabitants of the earth
          severally as they stand in need, according to their situations
          and what is required of them.
          You may ask, "What is meted out to us?" I answer, the ordinances,
          the sacraments that the Lord Jesus christ instituted for the
          salvation of the Jews, for all the house of Israel, and then for
          the Gentiles. This is the Gospel--the plan of salvation the Lord
          has given to us. This is the kingdom the Lord has presented to
          us; the same he presented to the Apostles in the days of Jesus.
          Now it is for the people to become acquainted with these laws and
          ordinances of salvation, then apply them to their lives, and that
          will save as many in the celestial kingdom, in the presence of
          the Father and Son, as will strictly adhere to them. This we read
          in the sacred book; we have it before us all the time, that just
          as many as will believe the Gospel of Jesus Christ, live up to
          its requirements in their lives, and die in the faith, shall
          receive a crown of life with the Apostles, and all the faithful
          in Christ Jesus.
          What next? I will tell you a practice of the Latter-day Saint
          Elders generally. For instance, I get up here, and preach the
          fulness of the Gospel, perhaps to individuals who never heard it
          before in their lives, and I close by saying, you that believe
          this which I have told you, shall be saved; and if you do not,
          you shall be damned. I leave the subject there. But, says one,
          "don't the Bible say so?" You ought to explain yourself. "I only
          said what the Savior taught--he says, go into all the world, and
          preach the Gospel to every creature; he that believeth and is
          baptized, shall be saved; and he that believeth not, shall be
          damned. Don't I say the same?" You leave it there, don't you?
          "Yes; the Apostle left it there, and so do I."
          I wish to explain it a little more, according to the plain,
          simple, English language. The sum of this practice is this; when
          I preach a gospel sermon, and they don't believe what I say, I
          straightway seal their damnation. Brethren, do you believe in
          such a thing as that? I do not; yet there are many of the Elders
          just so absurd.
          I recollect, in England, sending an Elder to Bristol, to open a
          door there, and see if anybody would believe. He had a little
          more than thirty miles to walk; he starts off one morning, and
          arrives at Bristol; he preached the Gospel to them, and sealed
          them all up to damnation, and was back next morning. He was just
          as good a man, too, as we had. It was want of knowledge caused
          him to do so. I go and preach to the people and tell them at the
          end of every sermon, he that believeth and is baptized, shall be
          saved; and he that believeth not, shall be damned. I continue
          preaching there day after day, week after week, and month after
          month, and yet nobody believes my testimony, that I know of, and
          I don't see any signs of it. "What shall I do in this case, if I
          am sent to preach there?" you may inquire. You must continue to
          preach there, until those who sent you shall tell you to leave
          that field of labour; and if the people don't manifest by their
          works, that they believe, as long as they come to hear me, I will
          continue to plead with them, until they bend their dispositions
          to the Gospel. Why? Because I must be patient with them, as the
          Lord is patient with me; as the Lord is merciful to me, I will be
          merciful to others; as He continues to be merciful to me,
          consequently I must continue in long-suffering to be merciful to
          others--patiently waiting, with all diligence, until the people
          will believe, and until they are prepared to become heirs to a
          celestial kingdom, or angels to the devil.
          When the book of Mormon was first printed, it came to my hands in
          two or three weeks afterwards. Did I believe, on the first
          intimation of it? The man that brought it to me, told me the same
          things; says he, "This is the Gospel of salvation; a revelation
          the Lord has brought forth for the redemption of Israel; it is
          the Gospel; and according to Jesus Christ, and his Apostles, you
          must be baptized for the remission of sins, or you will be
          damned." "Hold on," says I. The mantle of my traditions was over
          me, to that degree, and my prepossessed feelings so interwoven
          with my nature, it was almost impossible for me to see at all;
          though I had beheld, all my life, that the traditions of the
          people was all the religion they had, I had got a mantle for
          myself. Says I, "Wait a little while; what is the doctrine of the
          book, and of the revelations the Lord has given? Let me apply my
          heart to them;" and after I had done this, I considered it to be
          my right to know for myself, as much as any man on earth.
          I examined the matter studiously for two years before I made up
          my mind to receive that book. I knew it was true, as well as I
          knew that I could see with my eyes, or feel by the touch of my
          fingers, or be sensible of the demonstration of any sense. Had
          not this been the case, I never would have embraced it to this
          day; it would have all been without form or comeliness to me. I
          wished time sufficient to prove all things for myself.
          The Gospel of Jesus Christ, must be preached to all nations for a
          witness and a testimony; for a sign that the day has come, the
          set time for the Lord to redeem Zion, and gather Israel,
          preparatory to the coming of the Son of Man. When this Gospel is
          preached to the people, some will believe, and some will not know
          whether to believe it, or not. This is the situation of the
          world; go forth among the people; go among your own neighbors,
          and you may see it; because the Lord has touched your
          understanding with the spirit of truth, it looks to you as though
          all the world will believe it, if they can only hear your
          testimony; you go and preach to them, but, to your astonishment,
          they seem perfectly uninterested; some go to sleep, and others
          are dreaming of their farms and possessions.
          The Methodist will tell you, he has had the Gospel from his
          youth, and been brought up in the Methodist society; and so will
          the Quaker; and so will the Presbyterian; and so will the
          Shakers; for they say they are the only people, who are preparing
          for the Millennium. What is law here, is not there; and what is
          not there, is here. I have been used to this method of worship,
          or that; and have heard the good old tone, all the days of my
          The Methodists come along and say, you may be baptized by
          pouring, or by sprinkling, or not at all, for there is nothing
          essential in it. Another man says, you can partake of the Lord's
          Supper if you like, or let it alone, for it is non-essential; if
          you have only the good old tone, you are all right.
          Now I ask a question: Who is there that can know the things of
          God; who can discern the truth from the error? Where is the man;
          where are the people now in the world that can do it? They do not
          exist. Let the best wisdom of the world be summoned to their aid,
          and they cannot know the things of God. Let a man be endowed with
          the revelations of Jesus Christ, and he will say at once, they
          cannot tell--it is impossible. Let the just Judge sound his
          trump, what would he say? I can read it to you in this book.
          (Laying his hand on the Bible.)
          He is compassionate to all the works of His hands, the plan of
          His redemption, and salvation, and mercy, is stretched out over
          all; and His plans are to gather up, and bring together, and save
          all the inhabitants of the earth, with the exception of those who
          have received the Holy Ghost, and sinned against it. With this
          exception, all the world besides shall be saved. Is not this
          Universalism? It borders very close upon it.
          I have preached portions of the doctrine of salvation to the
          people, when I travelled abroad. When I would take up this
          subject, the Universalists would run after me hundreds of miles,
          saying, "We are Universalists, where I live; we are troubled with
          the Methodists, and the various sects; won't you come and use
          them up for us; we want them whipped out."
          It is only parts and portions of the Gospel that you hear; a
          little here, and a little there, scattered all over the world.
          Now let the hearts of the children of men be enlightened; let
          them be awakened to understand the designs of the Lord, in the
          salvation of man, and what will their voices echo one to another?
          I will tell you what would be the feeling of every heart;
          salvation, glory, hallelujah to God and the Lamb, forever and
          ever. Why? Because of His abundant mercy and compassion; because
          His wisdom has devised for us, that which we could not have
          devised for ourselves. That is what all creation would do.
          I will take up another thread of my discourse, by observing, that
          a few men upon the earth, have found an item of truth, here and
          there, and incorporated it with their own wisdom, and taught the
          world that the Lord designs to save all mankind, no matter what
          they do. Another portion will catch at the Calvinistic
          principles; they hold that the Lord has fore-ordained this, that,
          and the other, and vigorously contend that the Lord did decree,
          and did fore-ordain whatsoever comes to pass, and away they run.
          Another comes along with free salvation to all; he has caught
          that principle, and away they all go, deprecating everything
          else, only the little particle each one has incorporated to
          It is this that makes the variance in the religious world. We see
          a party here, and a party there, crying, "Lo here, and lo there;"
          and the people are contending bitterly with each other, nation
          against nation, society against society and man against man, each
          seeking to destroy the other, or bring them to this little
          particle of doctrine, that each one thinks is just right. It is
          right, as far as it goes.
          Man is made an agent to himself before his God; he is organized
          for the express purpose, that he may become like his master. You
          recollect one of the Apostle's sayings, that when we see Him, we
          shall be like Him; and again, we shall become Gods, even the sons
          of God. Do you read anywhere, that we shall possess all things?
          Jesus is the elder brother, and all the brethren shall come in
          for a share with him; for an equal share, according to their
          works and calling, and they shall be crowned with him. Do you
          read of any such thing as the Savior praying, that the Saints
          might be one with him, as he and the Father are one? The Bible is
          full of such doctrine, and there is no harm in it, as long as it
          agrees with the New Testament.
          I will continue the point I am now at. The Lord created you and
          me for the purpose of becoming Gods like Himself; when we have
          been proved in our present capacity, and been faithful with all
          things He puts into our possession. We are created, we are born
          for the express purpose of growing up from the low estate of
          manhood, to become Gods like unto our Father in heaven. That is
          the truth about it, just as it is. The Lord has organized mankind
          for the express purpose of increasing in that intelligence and
          truth, which is with God, until he is capable of creating worlds
          on worlds, and becoming Gods, even the sons of God.
          How many will become thus privileged? Those who honor the Father
          and the Son; those who receive the Holy Ghost, and magnify their
          calling, and are found pure and holy; they shall be crowned in
          the presence of the Father and the Son. Who else? Not anybody.
          What becomes of all the rest. Are you going to cast them down,
          and sink them to the bottom of the bottomless pit, to be angels
          to the devil? Who are his angels? No man nor woman, unless they
          receive the Gospel of salvation, and then deny it, and altogether
          turn away from it, sacrificing to themselves the Son of God
          afresh. They are the only ones who will suffer the wrath of God
          to all eternity. 
          How much does it take to prepare a man, or woman, or any being,
          to become angels to the devil, to suffer with him to all
          eternity? Just as much as it does to prepare a man to go into the
          celestial kingdom, into the presence of the Father and the Son,
          and to be made an heir to His kingdom, and all His glory, and be
          crowned with crowns of glory, immortality, and eternal lives. Now
          who will be damned to all eternity? Will any of the rest of
          mankind? No; not one of them.
          The very heathen we were talking about; if they have a law, no
          matter who made it, and do the best they know how, they will have
          a glory which is beyond your imagination, by any description I
          might give; you cannot conceive of the least portion of the glory
          of God prepared for His beings, the workmanship of His hands; for
          these people who are seated before me, who are the sons and
          daughters, legitimately so, of our Father in heaven, they all
          sprung from Him; it hath not entered into the heart of man to
          conceive what He has prepared for them.
          The Lord sent forth His Gospel to the people; He said, I will
          give it to my son Adam, from whom Methuselah received it; and
          Noah received it from Methuselah; and Melchizedek administered to
          Abraham. In the days of Noah, the people generally rejected it.
          All those who became acquainted with its principles, and thereby
          were made acquainted with, and tasted the power of salvation, and
          turned away therefrom, became angels to the devil.
          Let us apply it directly to ourselves, who have received the
          truth, and tasted of the good word of God. Let me turn around
          with you and reject it, and teach our children that it is an
          untruth, teach the same to our neighbors, and that it is a
          burlesque to our senses; let us deny the Lord that brought us,
          what would be the result? Our children would grow up in unbelief,
          and the sin would rest upon our heads. Suppose we are faithful,
          and the people will not believe our testimony, we shall receive
          our reward, the same as though they did believe it. 
          Suppose the inhabitants of the earth were before me, those who
          have died, what shall we say of them? Have they gone to heaven,
          or to hell? There is a saying of a wise man in the Bible, like
          this: "Who knoweth the spirit of a man that goeth upward or the
          spirit of the beast that goeth downward?" All have spirits, I
          should suppose, by this. Again, there is another saying, "The
          Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away, and blessed be the name of
          the Lord." Man dies, and his spirit goes to God who gave it. All
          these things are within the scope of the Gospel sermon; all these
          principles are embraced in this great Gospel discourse.
          What shall we say without going to the Scriptures at all? Where
          do the spirits of this people go to, when they lay down their
          tabernacles? They go into the presence of God, and are at the
          pleasure of the Almighty. Do they go to the Father and the Son,
          and there be glorified? No; they do not. If a spirit goes to God
          who gave it, it does not stay there. We are all the time in the
          presence of the Lord, but our being in the presence of the Lord,
          does not make it follow that He is in our presence; the spirits
          of men are understood to go into the presence of the Lord, when
          they go into the spiritual world.
          The Prophet lays down his body, he lays down his life, and his
          spirit goes to the world of spirits; the persecutor of the
          Prophet dies, and he goes to Hades; they both go to one place,
          and they are not to be separated yet. Now. understand, that this
          is part of the great sermon the Lord is preaching in his
          providence, the righteous and the wicked are together in Hades.
          If we go back to our mother country, we there find the righteous
          and the wicked.
          If we go back to our mother country, the States, we there find
          the righteous, and we there find the wicked; if we go to
          California, we there find the righteous and the wicked, all
          dwelling together; and when we go beyond this vail, and leave our
          bodies which were taken from mother earth, and which must return;
          our spirits will pass beyond the vail; we go where both Saints
          and sinners go; they all go to one place. Does the devil have
          power over the spirits of just men? No. When he gets through with
          this earth, he is at the length of his chain. He only has
          permission to have power and dominion on this earth, pertaining
          to this mortal tabernacle; and when we step through the vail, all
          are in the presence of God. What did one of the ancients say?
          "Whither shall I go from thy spirit, and whither shall I flee
          from thy presence; if I ascend up into heaven, thou art there; if
          I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there; if I take the
          wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the
          earth, even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand
          shall hold me." Where is the end of His power? He is omnipotent,
          and fills immensity by His agents, by His influence, by His
          Spirit, and by His ministers. We are in the presence of God
          there, as we are here. Does the enemy have power over the
          righteous? No. Where are the spirits of the ungodly? They are in
          prison. Where are the spirits of the righteous, the Prophets, and
          the Apostles? They are in prison, brethren; that is where they
          Now let us notice a little experience, lest some of you should be
          startled at this idea. How do you feel, Saints, when you are
          filled with the power and love of God? You are just as happy as
          your bodies can bear. What would be your feelings, suppose you
          should be in prison, and filled with the power and love of God;
          would you be unhappy? No. I think prisons would palaces prove, if
          Jesus dwelt there. This is experience. I know it is a starling
          idea to say that the Prophet and the persecutor of the Prophet,
          all go to prison together. What is the condition of the
          righteous? They are in possession of the spirit of Jesus--the
          power of God, which is their heaven; Jesus will administer to
          them; angels will administer to them; and they have a privilege
          of seeing and understanding more than you or I have, in the
          flesh; but they have not got their bodies yet, consequently they
          are in prison. When will they be crowned, and brought into the
          presence of the Father and the Son? Not until they have got their
          bodies; this is their glory. What did the holy martyrs die for?
          Because of the promise of receiving bodies, glorified bodies, in
          the morning of the resurrection. For this they lived, and
          patiently suffered, and for this they died. In the presence of
          the Father, and the Son, they cannot dwell, and be crowned, until
          the work of the redemption of both body and spirit is completed.
          What is the condition of the wicked? They are in prison. Are they
          happy? No; They have stepped through the vail, to the place where
          the vail of the covering is taken from their understanding. They
          fully understand that they have persecuted the just and Holy One,
          and they feel the wrath of the Almighty resting upon them, having
          a terrible foreboding of the final consummation of their just
          sentence, to become angels to the devil; just as it is in this
          world, precisely.
          Has the devil power to afflict, and cast the spirit into torment?
          No! We have gained the ascendency over him. It is in this world
          only he has power to cause affliction and sickness, pain and
          distress, sorrow, anguish, and disappointment; but when we go
          there, behold! the enemy of Jesus has come to the end of his
          chain; he has finished his work of torment; he cannot come any
          further; we are beyond his reach, and the righteous sleep in
          peace, while the spirit is anxiously looking forward to the day
          when the Lord will say, "Awake my Saints, you have slept long
          enough;" for the trump of God shall sound, and the sleeping dust
          shall arise, and the absent spirits return, to be united with
          their bodies; and they will become personages of tabernacle, like
          the Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ; yea Gods in eternity.
          They look forward with great anxiety to that day, and their
          happiness will not be complete--their glory will not attain to
          the final consummation of its fulness, until they have entered
          into the immediate presence of the Father and the Son, to be
          crowned, as Jesus will be, when the work is finished. When it is
          wound up, the text is preached, in all its divisions, pertaining
          to the redemption of the world, and the final consummation of all
          things; then the Savior will present the work to the Father,
          saying, "Father, I have finished the work thou gavest me to do;"
          and the Son will give it up to the Father, and then be subject to
          Him, and then he will be crowned, and that is the time you and I
          will be crowned also.
          We will notice, by this, that all the nations of the earth, with
          the exception of those who have apostatized from the Gospel
          salvation; every son and daughter of Adam, except those who have
          denied the Holy Ghost, after having received it, are placed in
          prison with the rest of them, with Prophets, Priests, and Saints.
          Suppose we quote a little Scripture on this point. Jesus died to
          redeem the world. Did his body lay in the tomb? Did his spirit
          leave his body? Yes. Where did his spirit go, you may inquire? I
          do not know that I can tell you any better than what the ancient
          Apostle has told it; he says he went to preach to the spirits in
          prison. Who are they to whom he went to preach? The people who
          lived in the antediluvian world. He preached the Gospel to them
          in the spirit, that they might be judged according to men in the
          What shall we say of the people who live in the 19th century?
          When any of the Latter-day Elders or Apostles die, and leave this
          world, suffice it to say, that their spirits go to that prison,
          and preach the Gospel to those who have died without hearing it;
          and every spirit shall be judged precisely as though he lived in
          the flesh, when the fulness of the Gospel was upon the earth.
          This leads to the subject of the saving and redeeming powers
          possessed by the righteous; but we shall not have time this
          morning to treat upon it, suffice it to say, that saviors are
          coming up, in the last days, upon mount Zion.
          This I say of every son and daughter of Adam, Prophets, Priests,
          and those that slew the Prophets, all go to prison; the Elders of
          this Church go there, and there continue their labors; and by and
          bye you will see Zion redeemed, and saviors will come up upon
          mount Zion. The faithful Elders will come, and go forward in the
          ordinances of God, that our ancestors, and all who have died
          previous to the restoration of the Gospel in these last days, may
          be redeemed.
          Now, ye Elders of Israel, when you say that John Wesley went to
          hell, say that Joseph Smith went there too. When you tell about
          Judas Iscariot going to hell, say that Jesus went there too. The
          world cannot see the whole of the Gospel sermon at one glance;
          they can only pick up a little here, and a little there. They
          that do understand it from the beginning to the end, know that is
          as straight as a line can be drawn. You cannot find a compass on
          the earth, that points, so directly, as the Gospel plan of
          salvation. It has a place for every thing, and puts everything in
          its place. It divides, and sub-divides, and gives to every
          portion of the human family, as circumstances require.
          It is for us to get rid of that tradition in which we are
          incased, and bring up our children in the way they should go,
          that when they get old, they will not depart from it. It is your
          privilege and mine, to enjoy the visions of the Spirit of the
          Lord, every one in his own order, just as the Lord has ordained
          it, that every man and woman may know for themselves, if they are
          doing right, according to the great plan of salvation. I have
          only touched a little of the great Gospel sermon, and the time
          has come, that we must close our meeting; so may the Lord God of
          Israel bless you, in the name of Jesus. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Orson
          Pratt, October 22, 1854
                            Orson Pratt, October 22, 1854
           A Discourse by Elder Orson Pratt, Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 22, 1854.
          By the request of President Kimball, I arise this afternoon for
          the purpose of speaking to the Saints upon whatever subject may
          be presented to my mind; at the same time earnestly desiring that
          the prayers of the Saints, who sit before me, may ascend up
          before the Lord in my behalf, that I may be able to speak those
          things that will be calculated to edify you, and do you good.
          It is delightful to me, to speak of the things that belong to the
          salvation of the human family--to speak of God and of His works,
          plans, and purposes, so far as they are revealed for the
          salvation and benefit of man.
          But, at the same time, I realize that there is but a small
          degree--a very small degree, indeed, of the purposes of God
          unfolded to the mind of man. The amount of knowledge, which we in
          our present state are in possession of, is extremely limited, so
          that when compared with that vast amount of knowledge that fills
          eternity, we might say that man, in his highest attainments here
          in this life, is, as it were, nothing. However far he may expand
          his intellectual powers, and faculties by studying, by
          meditation, by seeking unto the Lord diligently for the
          inspiration of the Spirit, yet all that he can possibly receive
          and attain to here is, comparatively speaking, nothing. Moses was
          a man possessed of like passions with other men; he was a man
          similar to ourselves, but he had by his perseverance, diligence,
          and faithfulness obtained great favor and power with God; so that
          by this favor and through this power, he was enabled to obtain
          greater information and knowledge than the rest of the human
          family that were on the earth at that period; and far greater in
          some things than what we have attained to in this generation; at
          the same time, when the grand and wonderful intelligence of
          heaven was portrayed before the mind of Moses, and knowledge was
          poured out from the heavens upon him, he exclaimed before the
          Lord, "Now I know for this once that man is nothing."
          If there were a being then upon the face of the earth, that had a
          reason to suppose that man was something, it was Moses; but yet
          in the midst of the visions of the Almighty, and the vast field
          of knowledge that was opened to his mind--while he was yet gazing
          upon the workmanship of the hands of God, and looking into the
          intricacies of the construction of this world--in the midst of
          all this, he considered himself nothing. That is just the way I
          fell; and I presume it is the way that almost every one feels who
          contemplates the greatness of God, and the immensity of knowledge
          that there is far beyond our reach in this present state of
          existence. At the same time, when we compare our knowledge and
          our intellectual powers with the glimmerings of light that we see
          manifested in the brute creation, we may exclaim that man is
          something--that he is advanced far beyond the apparent
          manifestations of knowledge that exist among the lower orders of
          beings. He is, indeed, something compared with the small
          glimmerings of light that exist in the brute creation, in the
          beasts of the field, in the fowls of the air, and in the fishes
          of the sea; all these have some degree of knowledge and
          understanding; and some of them have some degree of information
          and knowledge that man is not in possession of. Man designates
          such intelligence by the name of instinct; they seem to be guided
          by a principle that man, naturally speaking, is not in possession
          of; but yet, when we contemplate the reasoning powers and
          faculties of man--the rational faculty--the abstract ideas that
          are capable of dwelling in his mind, and then look at the brute
          creation, we see a vast difference between the two.
          Mankind, in one sense, are far above the brutes, and not only
          this, but they are above even some of the angels; for there are
          certain orders of angels that are far beneath man; they have not
          progressed in the great scale of being--in the scale of wisdom,
          knowledge, and intelligence to the same extent as we have; and
          consequently they are beneath us; they are lower than we are;
          they have not attained to the same degree of information that we
          are in possession of; hence we read that man shall judge angels;
          the Saints are to judge, not only the world--the wicked world,
          and also one another, but they are to judge angels. Why? Because
          they are superior, or will be at the time they shall sit in
          judgment and decide upon the cases brought before them by the
          angels; they will rule over the angels, or in other words, the
          angels will be subject to them. This we read in the laws that God
          has revealed to this Church. We read that there are a certain
          class of beings, who, because they have not fulfilled the law of
          God, will, in the next state, enjoy no higher privileges than
          those of the angels; they will remain angels, while others who
          have kept the celestial law in all its bearings--in its
          ordinances, and institutions, and have claimed the privileges of
          the Saints of God, will be exalted to a higher sphere; they will
          have greater knowledge and information, and those angels being of
          a lower order of intelligence will be subject to them, and will
          minister for them, in carrying out their purposes and designs in
          the wide field of action in the eternal worlds.
          All these, then, in one sense of the word, are something, instead
          of being nothing; for all of the works of God are intended to
          show forth His wisdom, power, and goodness, whether it is in the
          formation of man, in the formation of the brute creation, or in
          the formation of the highest or lowest order of intelligence. God
          is there; His intelligence and power are there; His wisdom and
          goodness are there; and all His works are marked by His great and
          glorious attributes.
          There is something calculated to give great joy and happiness to
          the mind of man in the idea of improvement, so long as there is
          anything to be learned--in the idea of progressing and expanding
          those principles of light and intelligence that already exist
          within these tabernacles. There is a joy--a satisfaction,
          existing in the mind of the righteous man, in the discovery of
          every additional truth; it matters not whether he himself attains
          this truth by experience, by reason, by reflection, by immediate
          revelation from higher powers, or by a revelation from his fellow
          man. It matters not how or in what way or manner he obtains this
          new truth, it is calculated to inspire his heart with joy and
          happiness. We see this illustrated in some small degree in the
          scientific discoveries of modern ages, as well as in those of
          ancient times.
               If we can depend upon the declarations of the discovers,
          who, after long and toilsome researches after some hidden truth,
          at length, have obtained the key that leads to that truth; they
          make use of it; the door of knowledge and wisdom is unlocked to
          them, and they find out and discover something new; it is
          demonstrated to their minds, and they know it to be true. There
          is a perceptive faculty, existing in the bosom of man, that is
          capable of perceiving light and truth, when it is clearly
          manifested; such truths are as certain and as sure to him as any
          other truths; when he obtains the knowledge which he has long
          hunted after, and spent years, perhaps, in close meditation,
          reasoning, and study in order to obtain, it gives him such a joy,
          satisfaction, and ecstacy, that he is hardly capable of retaining
          himself in the body. The mind of that great man Sir Isaac Newton,
          one of the great discoverers in modern times, was exercised in a
          wonderful manner. About the time he unfolded the great law that
          governs the bodies in the universe, which he termed the law of
          universal gravitation; his mind was so affected, so full of joy,
          and so overcome, when he was about laying bare the great truths
          this law unfolded, that he had to obtain the assistance of some
          one present in carrying out the calculations.
          If these scientific truths will have such an effect upon the mind
          of man, how much greater ought the joy to be, in the hearts of
          the children of men, in relation to those still greater truths
          that pertain to eternal life and the exaltation of man in the
          eternal world!
          If those truths which only have a bearing upon the present state
          of existence, are calculated to impart joy and happiness so
          intense, as almost to overpower the mortal tabernacle of man, are
          not those still greater truths that proceed from heaven by the
          ministration of angels, by the power of the Holy Ghost, and by
          the visions of the Almighty, calculated to impart still greater
          joy and happiness to the mind of man? They certainly are.
          There is something glorious in the contemplation of that period
          of time, when we shall come in possession of greater truths, even
          before we do obtain them; for we have the promise given to us by
          the Almighty, that more truths will be revealed and unfolded; and
          just the bare anticipation of these truths, before they are
          revealed, are calculated to give great joy and happiness to the
          mind of man. Now what do we anticipate brethren and sisters; What
          are we looking for? I stated to you last Sabbath to inquire into
          the nature of this future state of existence in some small
          degree; at the same time, reminding you that in one short
          discourse it would be utterly impossible to point out the
          apparent differences, or at least, the real and supposed
          differences that will exist between man in his present state, and
          in his future state. There will be a great difference in many
          respects, and in other respects, a very little difference.
          Now let us touch, for a few moments, upon a principle in regard
          to the communication of knowledge between man and man, in his
          future state. We know how we communicate knowledge one to another
          here; it is by speaking, by writing, by arbitrary sounds that we
          convey our ideas one to another, and reveal knowledge,
          instruction, and truth one to another. This is a very imperfect
          medium of communication, consequently man progresses slowly, very
          slowly, indeed, in obtaining truth. But supposing that we could
          have revealed to us from on high a language more pure and
          heavenly, that is a perfect language, so far as it can be made
          perfect, and be adapted to our present state of existence; let
          such a language be revealed to us; let us learn it; let us obtain
          a knowledge of all the various symbols of the same, by which we
          could communicate our ideas one to another, perfectly, without
          any ambiguity or uncertainty in the ideas, would not this be a
          medium by which mankind could greatly enlarge their ideas and
          knowledge of things? Could not those that have progressed in the
          principles of truth and righteousness more readily impart their
          ideas to others? Now we find, in consequence of the imperfection
          of our language, that it is very difficult, indeed, to
          communicate readily our ideas to others, so that we have to spend
          years and years to instil into the minds of children and youth,
          some very easy and simple principles of knowledge. It is in one
          sense owing to the weakness of the capacity and intellect in
          early age, but it is still more owing to the imperfection of
          language by which these ideas are communicated. [The speaker here
          asked a blessing upon the bread.]
          We were speaking upon the imperfect medium, here in this life, by
          which we convey our ideas one to another. Let us now compare our
          present means of obtaining knowledge with the facilities which
          are, no doubt, in store for the people of God. Will there be a
          pure language restored? There will; thorough the testimony of the
          prophets. We are also told that tongues shall cease. We are to
          understand by this that the great varieties of languages and
          tongues that have existed on the earth for many ages, are to be
          done away; they are to cease; now something must take the place
          of those imperfect, confused languages and tongues. What is that
          something? it is a language that is spoken by higher orders of
          beings than ourselves; that is, beings that have progressed
          further than ourselves; it is that same language that was spoken
          for nearly two thousand years after the creation; that was spoken
          by Adam and by his children, from generation to generation that
          came down to the flood, and was taught extensively among the
          children of Noah until the Lord by a direct miracle caused the
          people to forget their own mother tongue, and gave them a variety
          of new tongues that they had no knowledge of, and by this means
          scattered them abroad upon the face of the whole earth; and now
          that same Being that destroyed the memory of the people at the
          building of the tower, so that they could not remember their own
          mother tongue, and the same Being that gave to them new languages
          and tongues, will operate again by His power to do away this
          curse, for I consider it a curse, and the blessing will be as
          great and as extensive as the curse in destroying it from the
          face of the earth. This is a poor medium of communication between
          man and man. Whether this pure language here spoken of, which is
          to be spoken here upon the earth among mankind in their mortal
          state, is to be as perfect as the language that has to be spoken
          in our immortal state, is not for us to say; but still we may
          draw some conclusions upon this matter, from the fact that things
          in the eternal world will in some measure be different from what
          they are here.
          For instance; how do you suppose that spirits after they leave
          these bodies, communicate one with another? Do they communicate
          their ideas by the actual vibrations of the atmosphere the same
          as we do? I think not. I think if we could be made acquainted
          with the kind of language by which spirits converse with spirits,
          we would find that they do not communicate their ideas in this
          manner; they have a more refined way; I mean that portion of them
          that are in the school of progress; they have undoubtedly a more
          refined system among them of communicating their ideas. This
          system will be so constructed that they can, not only communicate
          at the same moment upon one subject, as we have to do by making
          sounds in the atmosphere, but communicate vast numbers of ideas,
          all at the same time, on a great variety of subjects; and the
          mind will be capable of perceiving them. Perhaps there may be
          some who consider this altogether an improbability. They may
          consider it very improbable that the mind should be able to take
          in a vast collection of ideas, on different subjects, all at
          once, and be able to digest and comprehend them; if the mind has
          such faculty as this, then there must necessarily be a language
          adapted to such a capacity of the mind; not an imperfect medium
          of communication to convey a few simple ideas upon one subject at
          a time, as is done here, but a language exactly adapted to the
          capacity; if the capacity is greater, then the language must be
          more refined than what it is here, in order to communicate in the
          same ratio that the capacity is capable of receiving and
          understanding. It is impossible for man to communicate, by our
          present language, any more than one chain of ideas at the same
          time. There may be other ideas suggested to the individual who is
          hearing, but the ideas of the individual who is speaking are
          always in one line, giving one idea at a time; and the mind seems
          hardly capable here in the mortal tabernacle, for some reason, of
          receiving more than one idea at a time, or at least a very few,
          and such ideas follow each other in quick succession. In the
          spirit state, we have reason to believe, that inasmuch as there
          is such a vast field of knowledge to be learned, their medium of
          communication will be adapted to the nature and capacity of the
          mind to grasp in a variety of subjects and digest them all at
          Well inquires one, "Can you imagine up any such system, or
          language in this world?" I can imagine up one, but it cannot be
          made practicable here, from the fact that the mind of man is
          unable to use it. For instance, the Book of Mormon tells us, that
          the angels speak by the power of the Holy Ghost, and man when
          under the influence of it, speaks the language of angels. Why
          does he speak in this language? Because the Holy Ghost suggests
          the ideas which he speaks; and it gives him utterance to convey
          them to the people. Suppose the Holy Ghost should suggest to the
          mind of an individual a vast multitude of truths, I mean when in
          the spiritual state, and he wished to convey that intelligence
          and knowledge to his fellow spirit; suppose, instead of having
          arbitrary sounds, such as we have here, to communicate these
          ideas, that the Holy Ghost itself, through a certain process and
          power, should enable him to unfold that knowledge to another
          spirit, all in an instant, without this long tedious process of
          artificial and arbitrary sounds, and written words. The fact is,
          if celestial spirits were so organized, and so constructed, as to
          close up their own ideas in their own bosoms, from those in a
          lower condition, or to disclose them at their own pleasure,
          according to the mind and wisdom of the Holy Ghost, and others
          were so organized and constituted as to receive these ideas by
          the power of the Holy Ghost, it would be just as good a
          communication between man and man--between spirit and spirit, as
          any other medium, and perhaps far better. Now, I have quite an
          idea that this will be one of the great helps in the eternal
          world, by which knowledge will be poured out more abundantly upon
          the mind of man; it will be by this aid; by the power of the Holy
          Spirit, so that they will progress faster than here, they will
          learn more rapidly; the intellectual powers will be more
          There is something of this nature that God has revealed. You may
          think I am now reasoning altogether upon conjecture, and only to
          be received as such; well, we will let it go as such; but still
          there are some glimmerings of light and intelligence, which God
          has revealed in regard to these superior beings in the eternal
          world, which show us that some such economy will be carried on in
          the future world. For instance, how does God perceive the
          thoughts of our hearts? Is there not here a language by which He
          can discover and discern the thoughts and intents of the heart?
          Are we not told in many of the revelations how that God can
          perceive the thoughts of man, and that for every idle thought we
          are to be brought into judgment? Yes, He discerns the thoughts,
          and the intents of the hearts of the children of men. Suppose we
          had some of that power resting upon us, would not that be a
          different kind of a language from sound, or from a written
          language? It would. If spirits could commune with spirits, and
          one higher intelligence commune with another, by the same
          principle through which God sees the thoughts and intents of the
          heart, it would be nothing more than what has already existed
          here in this world, according to that which is revealed.
          Much might be said upon this subject; it is a glorious subject to
          contemplate; and it is that which gives joy to the mind of every
          righteous man who desires the truth; he knows how happy the
          principle of truth makes him here, when he discerns it, or it is
          revealed to him; and if he can get his mind fixed upon a more
          glorious economy, wherein truth can be unfolded more rapidly, and
          in such a way that there can be no possibility of mistaking it
          for error; the very anticipation of it is calculated to inspire
          the heart of every individual to be faithful in all things, that
          he may enter into the enjoyment of those blessings which are
          There are a great many things to be contemplated, in connection
          with man in his future state, compared with his present. One
          principle I mentioned to you last Sabbath; that mankind would be
          able, through the power of the Holy Ghost, to obtain a knowledge
          of a vast number of things at once, and of a vast portion of the
          works of God all at once, the same as Moses did when he looked
          upon every particle of this earth and discerned it by the Spirit
          of God, not only all the various continents and islands, but
          every particle of the interior of it; all was presented before
          his mind at once. He did not have to reason out the knowledge
          concerning these particles; neither did he have to look at one
          particle of it at a time, but he had the faculty by which he
          could look at more than one thing at once; he could look at
          almost an infinite number at the same time; for there are more
          particles in one grain of sand than we could number in all our
          life if we lived to be a thousand years old; and if Moses could
          look upon every particle, and behold the whole all at once, he
          must have had the capacity of looking in all directions in the
          same moment, and of beholding it by the Spirit. Here was a
          language by which he conversed with nature; with the works of
          God; and the Spirit that is in connexion with the works of
          God--that is in all creation--conversed with Moses, for the
          Spirit of God is in all things, around about all things, through
          all things, and the law by which all things are governed. When
          that Spirit, which is thus diffused through all the materials of
          nature, undertakes to converse with the minds of men, it
          converses in a different kind of language from that we use in our
          imperfect state. It communicates ideas more rapidly--more fully,
          and unfolds a world of knowledge in a moment. But the Lord told
          Moses that a man in the flesh could not see all His glory,
          without seeing all His works; and that no man could behold all
          His works and afterwards remain in the flesh. Though the Spirit
          opened the mind of Moses, so that he could converse, as it were,
          with this one world, and discern every particle of it, and
          understand all about it; yet there was a stopping point; he was
          not permitted to gaze upon the particles of the moon, the sun,
          the planets, and fixed stars, and of the other worlds which God
          had made, only so far as God thought fit to open his mind to gaze
          upon His works; but the same Spirit is in the sun, and is the
          power thereof by which it is governed; the same Spirit is in the
          moon, and is the power thereof by which it was made; the same
          Spirit is also in the planets, and fixed stars, and it is the
          power thereof by which they are governed. I say the same Spirit,
          existing in all these worlds, could converse with the mind of
          man, as it conversed with Moses, and unfold their particles, and
          all things connected with them with the same ease as it unfolded
          the particles of this earth.
          So you see that there is a language in the spirit world that can
          communicate more to the mind in one minute than could be learned
          here in a hundred years of intense study and reasoning. There is
          an eternity of knowledge. There are worlds, as it were, without
          number; kingdoms without number; personages without number;
          intellectual beings of all grades and orders without number; and
          all these have their laws, their governments, their kingdoms,
          their thrones, their principalities, their powers, all moving and
          acting in the sphere in which they are placed; and they all have
          their way of communication one with another; therefore, when the
          Apostle says, that tongues shall cease, he had reference to the
          imperfect tongues upon the earth; knowledge will not cease, but
          knowledge in part will be done away, not knowledge in full. Says
          the Apostle Paul, "We know in part, and we prophesy in part. But
          when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part
          shall be done away." these imperfect things will be done away,
          and we shall be able by the power of the Holy Ghost to obtain a
          language by which the angels speak, and by which a higher order
          of beings speak, and by these means attain to a greater degree of
          knowledge, that will produce a greater amount of happiness.
          What is the body compared with the mind? Just nothing at all
          comparatively speaking. Hence the Savior says, in one of the new
          revelations, "Care not for the body, nor for the life of the
          body, but care for the soul, and the life of the soul." Again,
          the Savior says to his Apostles, Why take ye thought for raiment,
          what ye shall eat, what ye shall drink, or wherewithal ye shall
          be clothed. 'Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow;
          they toil not, neither do they spin; And yet I say unto you, that
          even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these."
          The body is of but little worth compared with that being which
          dwells within the body, it is not a perceptive being; if it is,
          we have not learned it; the body is not capable of feeling pain;
          if it is, we have never learned it; it is the spirit then that
          receives joy, happiness, and pleasure, that rejoices, fears, and
          hopes; it is the spirit, then, that possesses all these feelings
          and sensations of joy; happiness, pain, or misery. And when we
          speak about the dissolution, and death of the body, it is only
          the crumbling back of these coarser materials of earth, but the
          intellectual being lives, and will enjoy happiness to a greater
          extent. It is only our transition state, as it were, like some
          worms that creep out of their shells in the form of a butterfly;
          instead of crawling around like a snail, they burst their shells,
          they take the wings of the morning, and fly to the uttermost
          parts of the earth; not only their sphere of knowledge is
          extended, but their power of locomotion; so it will be when we
          burst these mortal shells; it is not death in one sense of the
          word, but it is only getting out of the prison we got by the
          fall. If Adam had not fallen, we should not have come here; but
          having come here, and these mortal tabernacles having produced
          pain and distress upon the spirit, we look forward to the joyful
          time, when we shall burst them, and our sphere of action become
          more enlarged, and our locomotive powers become greatly
          Only look at the sluggishness of man in the mortal tabernacle,
          and then compare it with those swift messengers sent from the
          eternal worlds to administer to all the creations of the
          Almighty; they are sent from world to world; they do not have to
          travel as we do, taking three months to get a thousand miles
          across the plains, but they mount up as with wings of eagles,
          they run and are not weary as we are, they walk and are not
          faint. I do not know whether they get fagued or not in that
          world; but it seems that we, who have come into this world, are
          in conditions and circumstances wherein we need to replenish the
          mortal tabernacle, we need refreshment, and have to lie down and
          sleep that the body may be refreshed. Give me that state where
          the active faculties of man--where the intellectual powers will
          never become weary, when they will be like God who rules the
          universe, whose eye is ever upon the works of His hands; every
          moment discerning the intents and thoughts of our hearts, and who
          governs creation with His power. Let us look forward to that
          state of more advanced happiness when this mortal shell shall be
          laid off; and when we, in the spiritual state, shall be enabled
          to enjoy those enlarged powers of locomotion which we have reason
          to expect.
          How much do we expect? That we may fly swiftly to other worlds on
          missions. We would not want to occupy three months time in going
          from the earth to the moon, or from the earth to the sun, as we
          do in crossing these plains with ox teams, but we wish to go with
          greater velocity. If we go with the velocity of light, we should
          travel at the rate of one hundred and ninety-two thousand miles
          every second. There are substances in nature which are moving
          with this velocity. What is it that moves with this velocity? Is
          it any thing else but spirit? The light we see is spirit. What
          does the Lord say in one of the new revelations? "Ye shall live
          by every word that cometh out of the mouth of God; whatsoever is
          truth is light, and whatsoever is light is spirit," consequently
          the light that comes from the sun is spirit. How fast does that
          spirit travel? It can be demonstrated that it can travel one
          hundred and ninety-two thousand miles per second; if then one
          portion of spirit can travel with that velocity, it is natural
          for us to suppose that any other portions of spirit can travel
          with the same velocity and thus we shall be able to accomplish,
          and perform a greater amount of righteousness among other worlds
          and beings, than if we were compelled to lose three fourths, or
          nine tenths of our time on the journey.
          Let us look forward to a different state of being from what we
          are now in; it will be different in some respects, and in other
          respects it will be the same. We shall be there, and fully
          conscious of our having been here, and remember all our actions;
          this is clearly taught in the Book of Mormon. The wicked will
          remember all their wicked actions; their memory will be perfect
          there, and every act of their lives here will be imprinted on the
          tablets of the memory. Here we can remember but few things;
          almost all the knowledge we have at one time, at another is gone
          from the tablet of our memory; but still it is there, and it will
          come out, like the daguerreotype likeness; that which appears to
          be erased from the mind will stand forth in bold relief and we
          shall read it, and be conscious that we were the beings that did
          so and so in this life. The righteous will remember all their
          acts, and it will produce a pleasant sensation upon their minds;
          we treated upon the subject of memory last Sabbath.
          May the Lord bless us, and may His Spirit be continually poured
          out upon us, and may it inspire our hearts with truth, and with a
          desire to work righteousness all the day long. And do not forget
          to look forward to those joys ahead, if we do, we will become
          careless, dormant, and sluggish, and we will think we do not see
          much ahead to be anticipated, but if we keep our minds upon the
          prize that lays ahead--upon the vast fields of knowledge to be
          poured out upon the righteous, and the glories that are to be
          revealed, and the heavenly things in the future state, we shall
          be continually upon the alert; we are beings that are only to
          live here for a moment, as it were. Let these things wink down in
          our minds continually, and they will make us joyful, and careful
          to do unto our neighbors as we would they should do unto us. Lest
          we should come short of some of these things is the reason I have
          touched upon the future state of man the two Sabbaths past, to
          stir up the pure minds of the Saints that we may prepare for the
          things that are not far ahead, and let all the actions of our
          lives have a bearing in relation to the future. May the Lord
          bless us for Christ's sake. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, March 19, 1854
                          Heber C. Kimball, March 19, 1854
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, March 19, 1854
              A Discourse by President H. C. Kimball, Delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 19, 1854.
          During the past winter I have spoken but seldom in this
          tabernacle; for I have been engaged in teaching in other places.
          Were the false traditions of past and present generations thrown
          off entirely, it would be much to the advantage of this people,
          and of the human family. Jesus Christ could not teach his
          disciples as freely, and as publicly as he otherwise would, had
          he not been bound from the same cause.
          There are many who think that because they are unlearned, they
          have not the same amount of tradition as those who are learned;
          but there is not much difference between the two classes in this
          respect. The inhabitants of the whole earth are coated over, as
          it were, with false traditions; which form an almost impenetrable
          barrier to the shafts of truth.
          I am not what the world calls a learned man; neither is President
          Young. We never went to any college except the one sustained by
          the Latter-day Saints, and we have been in that from the
          beginning. Let me tell you, gentlemen and ladies, if we had been
          brought up in palaces, and been sent to school all the days of
          our lives to get all the education of the world, and were
          practical men only in these things, would we be of any advantage
          to this people? A man may pass through a course of education
          designed to fit him for a doctor, a minister, or a lawyer, and it
          is often the case that he comes out an ignoramus, or worse than
          useless member of society.
          President Young and I were born of poor, but honest and
          industrious parents in the State of Vermont, when it was new; and
          we have been in new regions of country from that day to the
          present time, except when we were in the British Isles preaching
          the Gospel of salvation to a perishing world. We have cleared and
          subdued the land at various points from Vermont to this place, so
          that we have had no opportunity for becoming what the world calls
          educated. But if it were possible for me to exchange my
          information for that of the most learned man upon the earth, I
          would not do it; it would be like exchanging a good substantial
          warm suit of clothing for a mess of filthy rags.
          He has not my experience; it cannot be purchased with money, nor
          can men by all their learning attain to it. Although I have not
          education of a worldly nature, I have a spirit in me that knows
          right from wrong. What is true education, and what is not? There
          is quite a difference between the true education that all men
          should have, and that which pertains merely to this life, though
          when coupled together they are both good.
          When the flowers begin to bloom on the mountain sides, the ladies
          try to imitate them with artificial ones. Which would you rather
          possess in education--the real flower, or the artificial one?
          Would you not rather have true education, direct from heaven,
          than the artificial one of the world? The one educates the head
          and the heart, the other the head alone.
          The circumstances I have named rendered it impossible for me to
          obtain the education of this world; yet the education we have
          received from God has qualified me and my brethren to instruct
          kings and rulers, and bring to nought the wisdom of their wise
          I do not wish you to understand from these remarks that you may,
          with propriety, relax your endeavors to educate your children
          when you have an opportunity. I should have educated my children;
          but I have been poor and penniless. Instead of helping my
          children who have now come to maturity, they have been required
          to help me obtain an honest subsistence. This would not have been
          the case could I have retained my possessions; but no sooner had
          I accumulated a little property than it was taken from me by
          legalized mobs, and neither me nor my brethren could obtain
          Query--Which is the most profitable at present to this people,
          and to the rising generation--President Young and Heber C.
          Kimball, or their children? You will all say, let us have the
          fathers instead of the children, for the time being. Some would
          say, put the children to school, and let the old men work until
          they are dead! dead!! dead!!! I say let the boys help the father,
          and let the father and the mother live as long as they can; and
          let the daughters also do their part, for life is as sweet to the
          parents as to the children. Life is just as sweet to me now as
          ever it was; but the world has lost its sweetness to me.
          A person asked me this morning how it was that the enjoyments of
          this world, in which he used to take great pleasure, had sunk so
          much in his estimation? He said the theatrical performances and
          other amusements, used to give him much satisfaction and comfort.
          Then the real and substantial pleasure and happiness which he now
          enjoys in heavenly realities, was not in his possession; he
          therefore took comfort in artificial; but when the real rose,
          blushing in the midst of its own heavenly perfume, attracted his
          notice, the gum flowers lost their charms.
          When "Mormonism" absorbs the whole soul, it yields such a rich
          feast to the passenger, that earthly enjoyments become insipid
          and valueless. I have attended theatrical performances from which
          good morals can be gleaned; I have also engaged in the dance
          which is good exercise to the body; but when compared with the
          eternal realities of our holy religion, these enjoyments are in
          comparison like chaff to the sterling wheat; the one contains the
          essentials of life, the other is comparatively valueless. When I
          go to a dance, it is to please my brethren and my family; at the
          same time thinking I may perhaps get the spirit of dancing; and
          when I do I improve it, and engage in it, as in "Mormonism," with
          all my heart, mind and strength.
          I care not what I do if I do not do wrong, so that it comforts
          myself, my family, or my brethren. But anything that is
          wrong--anything that violates the holy principles of chastity,
          virtue, and holiness, I say away with it, and let me be
          associated with principles of righteousness, and you who want it
          may take the whole budget of the world and its fleeting
          pleasures; only let me have the pure unalloyed metal; and all who
          desire it are freely welcome to the dross.
          This people, taking them as a community, I believe would exchange
          many errors for one truth, and one truth is worth all the errors
          in existence. Yea further--one principle of truth and
          righteousness is worth the accumulated wealth of all the world,
          with all its pomp, titles, and tinseled show. The dross which is
          separated from iron ore is of no great value, but the metal is of
          worth to make iron and steel which can be converted into utensils
          for the use of man, such as plows, shears, spades, shovels, &c.
          Gold is valuable as a circulating medium because of its scarcity
          compared with other metals; otherwise it has no particular value
          more than any other portion of the globe, only in administering
          to the necessities of man.
          So far as we are concerned, we were taken from the earth, and we
          may expect to return to it again; and that portion of me which is
          pure, after the dross of this mortality is separated from it, I
          expect will be brother Heber. it is that which will be
          resurrected; but all that is not pure will remain; that is it
          will not go back into my body again; and if there are ten parts
          out of the hundred which are dross and corruption they will
          remain in the earth; I do not expect to take up the purified
          element that will endure for ever; still the dross is beneficial
          in its place.
          I expect that will be the case with brother Willard Richards. He
          has gone; and it will not be long before brother Brigham and
          Heber follow after. He has gone to the world of spirits to engage
          in a work he could not do if he had remained in the flesh. I do
          not believe he could have done as much work for the general good
          of the cause of God, had he remained in the flesh, as he can
          accomplish now in the spirit; for there is a work to do
          there--the Gospel to preach, Israel to gather that they may
          purify themselves, and become united in one heart and mind.
          "What! in the spirit world?" Have I not told you often that the
          separation of body and spirit makes no difference in the moral
          and intellectual condition of the spirit? When a person, who has
          always been good and faithful to his God, lays down his body in
          the dust, his spirit will remain the same in the spirit world. It
          is not the body that has control over the spirit, as to its
          disposition, but it is the spirit that controls the body. When
          the spirit leaves the body the body becomes lifeless. The spirit
          has not changed one single particle of itself by leaving the
          body. Were I to fall into a mud-hole I should strive to extricate
          myself; but I do not suppose I should be any better, any more
          righteous, any more just and holy when I got out of it, than
          while I was in it.
          Our spirits are entangled in these bodies--held captive as it
          were for a season. They are like the poor Saints, who are for a
          time obliged to dwell in miserable mud shanties that are
          mouldering away, and require much patching and care to keep them
          from mingling with mother earth before the time. They feel
          miserable in these old decaying tabernacles, and long for the day
          when they can leave them to fall and take possession of a good
          new house.
          It seems natural for me to desire to be clothed upon with
          immortality and eternal life, and leave this mortal flesh; but I
          desire to stick to it as long as I can be a comfort to my
          sisters, brethren, wives, and children. Independent of this
          consideration I would not turn my hand over to live twenty-five
          minutes. What else could give birth to a single desire to live in
          this tabernacle, which is more or less shattered by the merciless
          storms which have beat upon it, to say nothing of the ravages
          made upon it by the tooth of time? While I cling to it I must of
          necessity suffer many pains, rheumatism, head ache, jaw ache, and
          heart ache; sometimes in one part of my body and sometimes in
          another. It is all right; it is so ordained that we may not cling
          with too great a tenacity to mortal flesh; but be willing to pass
          through the vail and meet with Joseph and Hyrum and Willard and
          Bishop Whitney, and thousands of others in the world of spirits.
          Are they all together as we are today? I believe all Israel have
          to be gathered; and to accomplish this the Elders, both in this
          and the world of spirits, will go forth to preach to the spirits
          in prison. Where? Down into hell. I appeal to the Elders who have
          been from this place to preach the Gospel to the world, if it was
          not like going from heaven to hell. It is a world of sorrow,
          pain, death and misery, and you cannot make anything else of it.
          Brethren and sisters, I intend to be a Saint in heart and life;
          but if I conducted myself as many do, with the knowledge I Have,
          I will tell you what I would do, and what I would advise you to
          do in such a case--leave these valleys. If you do not intend to
          be faithful, to do the will of God, and to keep His commandments,
          if I were in that situation I would at once withdraw. There are
          some few who are leaving, and I am heartily glad of it. If it was
          a member of my own house, whom I loved as I do my life, I do not
          believe my head would ache because such an one left the society
          of the Saints on account of having no inclination to mingle with
          them. If such were determined to go, I would say, GO; and I would
          help them off if they were unable to get away.
               I do not feel as I used to when I see a man going away from
          the society of the Church of God. I used to be filled with
          sympathy and plead with them hours and hours, importuning with
          them until my head would ache and my heart sicken; and I never
          had the satisfaction in even converting one such character in my
          life. If I should happen to get one converted he would not stay
          converted, so I have concluded, and I think wisely, to let them
          go, and not suffer myself to have any more feelings about it than
          I would about any of the common occurrences of life.
          What are my kindred to me when the counsel of God is in the
          opposite scale? They are only as the dust of the balance. Brother
          Brigham is my kindred, for we have become kindred spirits; what I
          say of him will apply to many more of my brethren. When you hit
          one of those men you hit the whole of them.
          You have often heard me speak about my kindred. Many wish to
          return to the old countries to bring out their kindred, their
          sons and their daughters, their fathers and their mothers. Why
          would I not go back for mine? Because they would abuse me as they
          always have. When I was poor and penniless, and so thinly clad
          that you might well say I had the blues, for my face and body
          looked blue, I went to my friends who are all independently rich,
          and said, I am poor and penniless, and naked, and I am sent forth
          as a servant of God to the nations of the earth--will you give me
          some clothing, or a little money? and not one soul of them would
          help me to a single dime.
          Do you suppose I shall run after them? No. Will they be saved?
          Yes, they will, but they will be saved as I have told you many of
          this people will; they will first go to hell and remain there
          until the corruption with which they are impregnated is burnt
          out; and the day will yet come when they will come to me and
          acknowledge me as their savior, and I will redeem them and bring
          them forth from hell to where I live and make them my servants;
          and they will be quite willing to enter into my service.
          Before we heard "Mormonism," we have said a thousand times, "If
          we could but live to see a man of God like Paul, or Peter, James,
          John, Timothy, or Jesus Christ, and hear their instructions we
          would be willing to suffer any kind or amount of human suffering
          and not complain." My friends, who have rejected me and my
          testimony, will yet feel so towards me.
          Who have you now in your midst? Have you Abraham and Isaac, and
          the Apostles Peter, James and John? Yes, you have them right in
          your midst--they are talking to you all the time. Do you believe
          it? More or less of you say you do. But do you know it? Brother
          Rhoads was saying what he believed; he says he "believes what
          brother Brigham says is the word of God." I say, pray that you
          may have a knowledge that it is the word of God, and be able to
          declare it in the stand, in your families, and in all the world.
          What brother Rhoads said was good and true. Did he not reach us
          good principles? Yes; he taught us the revelations of Jesus
          Christ. I did not hear anything else.
          I beg of you brethren, and beseech you in the name of Jesus
          Christ, to be subject in your office and in your callings. I know
          you do not realize your important position as you ought.
          Some of you will be asking brother Kimball why he does not talk
          here as he does up in the Council House? There are very many of
          this people who have come here to-day, and perhaps you have said,
          what is very commonly said in the world, "Come, wife, let us go
          to meeting to day and get warmed up under the droppings of the
          sanctuary, and become strengthened in our faith." Why did you not
          attend to that before you came here to-day? I defy any man on
          earth to preach the same to you, as to a few individuals of one
          heart, and of one mind.
          There is as great a variety of spirits in this house as there is
          of countenances; and there are no two persons who look exactly
          alike. Is it not high time there should be a reformation? We must
          become of one heart and of one mind, just as though we were one
          man. Before this people can enter into the celestial world there
          must be a great reformation among them. Every man and woman must
          know and faithfully fulfil their duty day by day. Do you think I
          am disobedient to my file leaders? I never had such a disposition
          in my heart; if I had I would banish it from me as quick as I
          would the devil, because such a disposition is pernicious to the
          interests of the cause of truth, and will end in the destruction
          of those who encourage it.
          Brethren and sisters, I want you to understand these things and
          cultivate them in your minds, and pray that you may be subject in
          the sphere in which you are appointed to act, whether in the
          Priesthood or in a family capacity. You have to learn that
          lesson, or you can never go into the paradise of God to mingle as
          equals with those who are counted faithful.
          There is no man in the flesh whose right it is to direct or
          control brother Brigham Young in the first thing. If I have not a
          right to lead and control him, I want to know who has? It is my
          meat and my drink to do the will of my Father who is in heaven;
          and if I do this to the day of my death, as brother Willard did,
          I am as sure of salvation as you are that the sun will rise and
          set again.
          Is brother Willard saved? Yes, he is where Joseph is; and I tell
          you there was a happy meeting. Was brother Willard obedient? Yes,
          just as obedient as a well-trained child. He has not got a wife
          or a child on earth as obedient as he was. And God knows there
          never was a being on the face of His footstool, that could be any
          more kind to me than brother Willard and brother Brigham. Were
          they ever cross and snappish with me? Never, no, never. 
          There was another trait in his character that will serve to
          illustrate the profound deference he paid to the man he
          acknowledged to be his leader. When on visits with brother
          Brigham and myself, or when he would accompany us to a ball room
          or to a meeting, he never would enter the room before his leader.
          I have tried a dozen times to have him do so, but I always failed
          in accomplishing it. He had so cultivated the spirit of obedience
          and submission, that it seemed to be incorporated with his being.
          I tell you these things to answer as a kind of spur to encourage
          you to more diligence, and greater obedience to the commandments
          of God, that you may live forever.
          There is nothing I fear in this Church except contention, and a
          disposition in the people to run over their fellow beings. What I
          mean by this is, when a man is appointed by the proper
          authorities to preside over one of the outposts of the Kingdom of
          God, in this Territory or anywhere else, there is a disposition
          in some to create an influence against that man, not to be
          obedient themselves, and to endeavour to make everybody else
          disobedient. Now a man will be condemned for not obeying the
          person properly appointed to preside over him, as much as he
          would for not obeying brother Brigham if he were there; and the
          people will be as much condemned if they do not obey brother
          Brigham, as they would if they should disobey the Lord God were
          He here in person.
               When we sent brother Samuel Richards to England to preside
          over the affairs of the Kingdom of God there, it became his
          province to rule and dictate all matters in that flourishing and
          extensive field of labor, and his word is the word of God to the
          people. When he sends a man to preside over a Conference, and
          another over another Conference, they are his representatives,
          and their word is the word of God to the people over whom they
          preside; and brother Samuel is their delegate to the General
          Conference, the same as brother Bernhisel is the delegate of this
          Territorial Government to the General Assembly in Washington.
          I wish you to learn these things, for I wish you to prepare your
          minds to receive the word of God every day that you live; and not
          only live like Saints when you are in this Tabernacle, but when
          you are abroad, and in all your actions. Can you be saved with a
          complete salvation if you do not do this? No, you cannot. No man
          or woman can receive a full salvation upon any other principle
          than by continuing in the new and Everlasting Covenant. When a
          person violates his covenant he loses all he ever obtained in the
          Priesthood; whether it is wives, children, or possessions; they
          all go out of his hands. You have been taught this, and have been
          instructed by night and by day in these important matters. I have
          felt of late as though I never could cease exhorting the people.
          I have felt like a lion in strength.
          I want you to pursue the path that is marked out for you by the
          servants of God, that I may continue to enjoy your society here
          and hereafter. I wish to enjoy your society, and you mine. Do you
          not wish to go where I go? You all believe I wish to enter into
          the kingdom of heaven and be saved with the sanctified.
          I care not how the Lord saves me. I am willing to pass through
          anything under the heavens that He requires me to pass through,
          that I may do His will and keep His commandments, and have favor
          in His eyes, through accomplishing the work He has given me to
          What does it matter where I am? I am as ready to go and preach
          the Gospel as to dwell here, if it is the will of the Lord and my
          brethren. I have told the men who are about to be sent forth this
          year, that they will go with more power and strength than any
          former laborers in the vineyard have enjoyed. This applies to
          those who do right and diligently keep the commandments of God,
          and love justice and righteousness and do as they are told,
          refraining from evil. I say they will have more power than former
          servants of God possessed according to their light and knowledge,
          and the circumstances in which they will be placed. I prophesy
          this. A man is a fool that will not prophesy good concerning
          Israel and concerning his own father's house.
          I told my brethren when they went from here, and from this time,
          instead of going to dances, and to the theatre, and to parties,
          to go and fast and pray, and prophesy upon the success of their
          If your heart is right you cannot speak without speaking what is
          right. The Spirit of Prophecy foresees future events. God does
          not bring to pass a thing because you say it shall be so, but
          because He designed it should be so, and it is the future
          purposes of the Almighty that the Prophet foresees. That is the
          way I prophesy; but I have predicted things I did not foresee,
          and did not believe anybody else did, but I have said it, and it
          came to pass even more abundantly than I predicted; and that was
          with regard to the future situation of the people who first came
          into this valley. Nearly every man was dressed in skins, and we
          were all poor, destitute, and distressed, yet we all felt well. I
          said, "it will be but a little while, brethren, before you shall
          have food and raiment in abundance, and shall buy it cheaper than
          can be bought in the cities of the United States." I did not know
          there were any Gentiles coming here, I never thought of such a
          thing; but after I spoke it I thought I must be mistaken this
          time. Brother Rich remarked at the time, "I do not believe a word
          of it." And neither did I; but, to the astonishment and joy of
          the Saints, it came to pass just as I had spoken it, only more
          abundantly. The Lord led me right but I did not know it.
          I have heard Joseph say many times, that he was much tempted
          about the revelations the Lord gave through him--it seemed to be
          so impossible for them to be fulfilled. I do not profess to be a
          Prophet; but I know that every man and woman can be, if they live
          for it. To enjoy this blessing they must walk in the channel of
          the Priesthood, being subject to the order and government of
          heaven; then they are all revelation and they cannot predict
          anything that will not come to pass. All that hinders you from
          enjoying this blessing is because you are not obedient.
          You might say, "Do we not do all things that brother Brigham
          counsels us to do?" No; if you did every wife would be subject to
          her own husband, and every Elder to their presiding Elder, and
          every member to the presiding Bishop. If you do not do this you
          are not walking in the channel of the Priesthood, in the channel
          of revelation and salvation; and you will stumble and fall if you
          do not wake to righteousness and gird up the loins of you minds.
          Have not the majority of this congregation made the most solemn
          covenants and vows that they will listen to, obey, and be subject
          to the Priesthood? Have not the sisters made the same solemn
          covenants and vows before God and angels, that they would be
          subject to their husbands? Are you faithful to your vows? If you
          are, you will have dreams, and visions, and revelations from the
          world of light, and you will be comforted by night and by day.
          But if you do not fulfil your covenants you cannot enjoy these
          The matter is plain to your understanding, and not mysterious. I
          have no mysteries to impart, and I never expect to have; for if
          this people will do right there is nothing that will be a mystery
          to them; but those things which appeared the most mysterious will
          prove to be the most simple things in the world.
          Learn to govern yourselves in a family capacity, for there is
          where reformation ought to commence, after it has commenced in
          the assembly of the Elders of Israel. There must be order, peace,
          love, kindness, gentleness, and every noble sentiment to
          accomplish a reformation that is pleasing to God.
          We have got to be gathered, and continue gathered, though there
          will be all kinds of fish in the net; and the Lord will bring us
          into all kinds of circumstances until the wheat is separated from
          the smut, and chaff. There is a time of separation, and I know if
          I am faithful I shall be among the chosen band who will triumph
          over hell, death, and the grave, and dwell in the society of men
          who are perfectly of one heart and mind, where the wicked cease
          to trouble, unless we go where they are. This day will come as
          sure as the sun shines.
          As for my going into the immediate presence of God when I die, I
          do not expect it, but I expect to go into the world of spirits
          and associate with my brethren, and preach the Gospel in the
          spiritual world, and prepare myself in every necessary way to
          receive my body again, and then enter through the wall into the
          celestial world. I never shall come into the presence of my
          Father and God until I have received my resurrected body, neither
          will any other person; and I doubt whether all those who profess
          to be Saints will ever be gathered with the spirits of the just
          in the spiritual world; but they will be left where they attain
          to. The righteous are gathered to the spirit world to prepare for
          the resurrection of their bodies.
          I do not know that I can talk any plainer. I am speaking as plain
          as I can to have you understand. I do not expect to be with you
          forever, neither will brother Brigham in these bodies; they are
          nearly worn out; they have stood a long and violent siege and
          will soon go the way of all the earth. Still we may live many
          years yet to assist in making permanent the foundations of Zion.
          There are thousands of good men in the earth who can act in the
          same capacity we do, after we he passed through the veil of
          death. God can qualify whom He pleases, and put in them the
          spirit of Joseph, and Brigham, and Heber.
          Brethren, do keep the commandments of God and live your
          profession; and remember if you were as godly and as holy as the
          angels, the world would speak against you and seek your
          destruction. What has the world to do with you? Nothing, only as
          you associate with it and partake of its spirit. Upon the same
          principle has a man any power over a woman, any further than she
          will give him power to pollute herself and him too? Can the
          Gentiles turn me to unrighteousness any further than I permit
          them? I am an instrument in the hands of God, and it is not for
          me to dictate the power that works through me, but it is for Him
          to control me according to His good pleasure.
          Does brother James' violin rise up and dictate him? No, it is
          perfectly passive, permitting him to play any tune he pleases
          upon it. Upon the same principle we should be like clay in the
          hands of the potter. it is not for the clay to dictate the potter
          but the potter dictates the clay, and moulds, and fashions it
          according to his own pleasure. Just so God controls brother
          Brigham, and every other good man who is dictated by His Spirit. 
          Do you ever hear me get up here and say, "I am no preacher and
          you must not expect anything from me?" I am in the hands of God,
          and it is for Him to speak through me, or in other words play a
          tune on me to this people according to His own fancy. I am in the
          hands of the potter; and if I continue faithful, he will make me
          a vessel unto honor.
          I wish you Elders to apply this illustration to yourselves--if
          you have anything to say, say it; and if you have not, be as
          quiet as the musical instrument without the performer.
          When I went to England first, I had not much to say. We opened
          the door to that nation in great simplicity. Had I preached
          almighty discourses with more words than good sound doctrine,
          instead of opening the doors, I should have added another lock.
          The Lord appointed me to that work because I was willing to be
          the simplest.
          After I had spoken they always thought there was something else
          behind the curtain. We preached three times in Vauxhall Road
          chapel, Preston. After the third meeting the priest feared the
          increasing greatness of our testimony, and closed the door of his
          house against us. This was no sooner done than fifty doors were
          opened to us, and the people were all around us entreating us to
          preach in their houses.
          If you will visit a stone quarry, you will find they use the
          simplest instruments to crack and remove the largest rocks; so
          the Lord uses the simplest of His servants to accomplish some of
          His greatest purposes. When the blacksmith is making a
          horse-shoe, does it dictate its maker who is making it and
          fashioning it to a useful purpose? Does the plowshare, the
          scythe, the ax, or the chisel rise up and dictate the mechanic,
          saying, "Why do you not form me thus?" Some of these tools have
          to pass through various shades of temper--sometimes too low, and
          sometimes too high, before it is just right; and it requires an
          expert mechanic to hit the proper temper, for they are made to
          come in contact with all kinds of timber. So we are tools made to
          come in contact with all kinds of dispositions, and very few
          tools will stand and keep a good edge coming in contact with
          every kind of timber, and stone, and the devil.
          If you do not learn to temper yourselves properly, you will not
          be of much use at last.
          I speak of these things whether they are edifying or not; as to
          that I am not concerned, but they are true, and they will save
          and exalt you, and bring you into the celestial world to mingle
          in the society of the Father, and Jesus Christ His Son, with the
          Prophets and Apostles form the beginning to the present day. I am
          bound for no other place, God helping me. Salvation is what I am
          after in this world; and food, clothing, and washing are all I
          need while I stay here, and that is more than I can take away
          with me.
          I have no pride in anything but the principles of salvation, and
          to see you do right, humble yourselves, retain the Holy Spirit,
          live your religion--them I am proud of you indeed. My God, His
          purposes, my religion, and this people, are all I am fond of in
          this world.
          Our religion is different from everything else that was ever
          instituted, but when you become acquainted with it and partake of
          its spirit, it is lively and angelic; it is a screen that throws
          out everything but that which is pure wheat. When we make flour
          from smutty wheat, we must have a smut machine to clear it all of
          filth before it goes into the bolt. The smut machine is a
          powerful place; it will blow to pieces every thing that is not
          the real grain. Thank God He has got such a machine, and men to
          enjoy His Holy Spirit.
          My prayer is before God and angels, by day and by night, that He
          would purge this people and purify them from wicked men and
          women; and I hope the purging operation will continue until there
          is an entire separation of the wheat and the chaff. There will be
          a separation, and I tell you what I know, and not what I believe
          only. I know the truth when I speak it, and so do you when you
          hear it. It makes no matter what instrument it comes through, it
          is truth still, and you cannot make anything else of it.
          God bless you forever, that peace, goodness, union, love, and the
          spirit of patience and submission before God, and in the hands of
          His servants, may abide with you forever. AMEN.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, October 8, 1855
                           Brigham Young, October 8, 1855
            A Discourse, by President B. Young, Delivered in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 8, 1855.
          There are many things I wish to say before this Conference comes
          to a close, but I labour under the same difficulty as did one of
          the speakers yesterday, for I would like to touch upon so many
          subjects that I am at a loss to know where to begin.
          And when this Conference is over, I presume that I shall think of
          many things omitted, which it would have pleased me to talk
          about. When a great number of people are together it affords an
          excellent opportunity for teaching them the principles of
          practical religion.
          Our Conference has been well attended; there has been the
          greatest number of Saints assembled that I have ever seen at one
          time, and they will out number any meeting that the Latter-day
          Saints have had on this continent, or on any other. I doubt not
          but this is the largest congregation of Saints that has ever been
          assembled at one time and place on the face of the whole earth,
          since the days of the Jews in Jerusalem, or of the Nephites on
          this continent while they were in their glory and strength.
          When all the male members of Israel were obliged to go up to
          Jerusalem twice a year to worship, pay tribute, &c., probably
          their congregations were larger than the one to day, but no other
          denomination in all christendom assembles so many people, at one
          meeting, as we now have in this Conference.
          I can here teach a great many at once their duty to their God, to
          themselves, to their families, and to their neighbours, if you
          could spare the time to listen.
          As I have observed to my brethren, and as I will now observe to
          you, neither in China, Siam, nor in any other country in Asia,
          nor in any part of Europe and Africa, nor in any other place on
          God's earth, is there a people who now need preaching to more
          than do the Latter-day Saints in this Territory, and that too by
          faithful Elders, faithful ministers of the Gospel, messengers of
          life and salvation.
          The inhabitants of this Territory have been taught the ways of
          life, they have been taught the principles of the Everlasting
          Gospel and have received them; they have forsaken their former
          homes, the countries in which they were born, their friends and
          family connexions, for the Gospel's sake; they are here in the
          midst of these mountains, and many of them will be damned, unless
          they awake out of their sleep, unless they refrain from their
          evil ways. Many are stupid, careless, and unconcerned, their eyes
          are like the fool's eye, to the ends of the earth, searching for
          this, that, and the other, they have become greedy, are slow to
          fulfil their duty, are off their watch, neglect their prayers,
          forget their covenants and forsake their God, and the devil has
          power over them.
               It is of necessity then that we appoint missionaries for
          this Territory, to preach to them the word of God which is quick
          and powerful. Some people say that they believe the Gospel who
          never live it, they did not embrace it for the love of it, but
          because they knew its truth. They will not give up their carnal,
          selfish, devilish dispositions and traits of character, and if
          you undertake to choke them off from these dispositions you will
          have to choke them to death before they will let them go; they
          will hang on to their evil feelings and evil deeds with greater
          tenacity than does the terrier dog to his prey, or antagonist; it
          is almost impossible to separate them from evil.
          As for making Saints of those characters, we have no such
          anticipation; we wish to make Saints of those who sincerely
          desire to be Saints, who are willing to sacrifice their carnal,
          sinful, devilish feelings, to forsake them altogether, and to
          strive to become Saints and to establish the principles of
          honesty within them; we expect that such persons will be Saints,
          and we feel like doing all that we can to aid them in a righteous
          As I observed at the commencement of our Conference, people must
          be chastened; we believe in this principle. We receive as correct
          doctrine what is said to have been written by one of the ancient
          Apostles, (why I make this peculiar remark is because this
          congregation heard brother O. Pratt scan the validity of the
          Bible, and I thought by the time he got through, that you would
          scarcely think a Bible worth picking up and carrying home, should
          you find one in the streets) viz.; For the Lord loveth whom he
          chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth, and if you
          are not chastened you are "bastards, and not sons."
          I am quite inclined to believe this, and I do not care how many
          hands it has passed through. I will remark that brother Orson has
          clearly shown how the Bible has come into our hands, in order to
          convince the people of the necessity of positive proof for the
          validity of the Book of Mormon, the Book of Doctrine and
          Covenants, and that Joseph Smith was a true Prophet of God, and
          to prove that our testimony, witnesses, evidence and knowledge of
          these facts are ten thousand times more than can be produced in
          favor of the Bible, unless a man has the power of God to testify
          to it, for there can be no proof in its favor short of
          This we have known all the time, we have understood it from the
          beginning. That made us very anxious, in the days of Joseph, to
          get the new translation; but the Bible is good enough just as it
          is, it will answer it very well when I was preaching in the
          When brother Luddington was telling about the elephant walking
          through the cane, it made me think of our Elders going through
          the world, in past days, with the proclamation of the Gospel.
          They could take a host of priests, in fair argument, and pull
          them up by the roots and throw them aside, as easy as that
          elephant did the cane.
          The Bible is good enough as it is, to point out the way we should
          walk, and to teach us how to come to the Lord of whom we can
          receive for ourselves.
          It is good for this people to be chastened, and we may expect it,
          and I delight in the feelings and spirit just manifested by
          bother Luddington in his remarks, there was no crying, no whining
          upon his mission; if they expelled him from one house he went to
          another without crying or whining about it.
          All that we have received as chastisement is from the hand of the
          Lord, and I do not consider that it has been necessary to shed
          one tear about it. It always takes something besides
          chastisement, or afflictions heaped upon us by our enemies, to
          bring tears from me. I can cry for joy, I can cry on beholding my
          friends after being separated from them.
          The soft, loving, still, small voice of the Spirit will bring
          tears to my eyes, but all the sufferings that could be brought
          upon me by the malice of the wicked, and all that could be said
          or done against me by them, I think will not bring many tears
          from my eyes.
          They might torture my body until it would cry, but all that we
          have hitherto met with, in the shape of affliction, I have
          received as from the hand of the Lord, and I think the
          chastisement has been light.
          Let us reform, that we may be chastened no more; let us try to
          profit by the blessing we receive, instead of being made to
          profit by the things we suffer, for afflictions we shall be
          obliged to receive, if we do not profit by our blessings.
          If we are chastened a little, do not worry about it. We think we
          are chastened, this season, in the failing of our crops, but I
          receive this as one of the greatest blessings that could be
          bestowed upon us.
          I have felt like weeping, since I have been in this Territory, on
          beholding the ungrateful feelings of many of this people, their
          ingratitude towards their God, and at seeing them trample grain
          under their feet as a thing of naught.
          Now I think what we have received this season is but a small
          portion of what we will receive, if we do not take care of the
          things the Lord bestows upon us, and be thankful for them. I look
          upon it as a prelude, forerunner, or testifier, that afflictions
          will come upon us, unless we humble ourselves before our God.
          This, however, is but a very slight affliction. We have plenty
          here, no person is going to stare, or suffer, if there is an
          equal distribution of the necessaries of life which are in the
          There are practises among this people which have injured my
          feelings. I see some men so greedy after the things of the world,
          that they will take their grain from the mouths of innocent,
          helpless women and children who are suffering for food, and sell
          it to gentile merchants to speculate upon. I have learned, since
          this Conference commenced, a circumstance that took place a year
          ago; it may appear trifling to some, but to me it is grievous.
          Some of the brethren from San Pete and Fillmore came here last
          year, when they had plenty of wheat, and sold their flour to C.
          A. & E. H. Perry for three, four, and four and a half dollars per
          hundred weight, and that firm sold all they could to the poor
          women and children, and made them pay a very high price. Those
          brethren afterwards learned that I bought nearly the whole of it
          for four dollars a hundred, and that I paid in cattle at a good,
          liberal price, and some have felt grieved about it. Why are they
          grieved? Because they had not the means to buy it themselves to
          speculate upon.
          They have not raised any wheat this year, and now they are
          whining after me, "Will you let us have a little tithing wheat?"
          They ask what I have to say to them; I have this to say to every
          man in this congregation and throughout this Territory, and from
          this time henceforth, know my feelings, if you will sell grain to
          the Gentiles, or to your enemies, for the sake of their money
          when it is needed to be distributed among this people, I wish you
          would take your property and leave this Territory, for you are
          not worthy of belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of
          Latter-day Saints, you are unworthy a citizenship in the kingdom
          of God. If those who are going to sell their grain to speculators
          this year will rise up and tell us who they are, I will hold up
          my hands for them to be forthwith severed from this Church, to be
          delivered over to the buffetings of satan.
          Some who are unacquainted with me may say, "Brother Brigham,
          don't you speculate?" Yes, I am the greatest speculator in the
          world, and one of the greatest misers, for I am seeking after
          eternal riches. "But, don't you speculate on your flour? You have
          fine mills." Ask those who recollect to a few years ago, when
          wheat was tramped under foot by man and beast. I then had a hired
          man who said he wanted to get a little money; I told him that I
          did not want to sell flour to the Gentiles in order to get it. He
          replied, "If you are willing, I would like to sell them a little,
          for they are from my country." He did so, to the value of
          ninety-three dollars. I do not think that besides that amount, I
          have ever received fifty-cents in cash for flour sold from my
          mills, though I have had emigrants come, in a scarce time, and
          offer me fifty and seventy-five dollars for a hundred pounds. I
          said to them, you may plead until you are as gray as a rat, and
          you will not get flour from me for your money, but if you will
          stay and help us through harvest, and go to work like good men,
          we will pay you the same as we pay our brethren, and then you may
          go to California, or any where you please; but as to your getting
          one pound of flour from my bin for money, you cannot do it, and
          they never have so far as I recollect. It all goes to feed those
          men and women who work; those are the ones who eat my flour.
          If I cannot get rich only upon the principle of oppressing my
          brethren, and depriving them of the comforts of life, I say, may
          God grant that I may never have another farthing upon earth. I do
          not want it upon such terms, and if I ever should, I hope the
          Lord will keep it from me.
          I told you the other day what makes me rich, it is the labor of
          those whom I feed and clothe; still I do not feel that I have a
          dollar in the world that is my own, it is the Lord's and he has
          made me a steward over it; and if I can know where the Lord is
          pleased to have it appropriated, there it shall go. The
          covetousness of some of this people has grieved me, and it has
          caused my spirit to weep and mourn to observe their greediness,
          their cheating and lying, their scheming in every possible way to
          wring a picayune out of this man, or that woman. I can put my
          finger upon owners of little shops in this city, who will lie to
          you for half and hour on a stretch, who will, if you send a child
          to their shops to buy a yard of ribbon that is worth ten cents,
          charge the child fifteen or twenty cents for it, but if I go to
          purchase the same article I can have it for ten cents. I know
          what goods are worth, but let an ignorant person go to those
          places and they will cheat him. I can put my hands upon traders
          now before me, who are guilty of such conduct.
          It grieves me to see men who have believed the Gospel, forsaken
          the land of their nativity for the sake of life and salvation,
          endured all they have in coming here, and then, for a paltry sum
          of money, sacrifice their salvation. Such men cannot be saved in
          the celestial kingdom of God; they may receive their endowments,
          but they will do them no good; they may read over their
          Patriarchal blessings every day, but they will do them no good.
          No man or woman can receive life everlasting, only upon the
          principle of strict obedience to the requirements of the
          celestial law of heaven; no man can inherit such a blessing upon
          unholy principles.
          Men must be honest, they must live faithfully before their God,
          and honor their calling and being on the earth. You ask if that
          is possible? Yes; the doctrine which we have embraced takes away
          the stony hearts.
          We are naturally prone to wander from that which is good, and to
          receive every species of iniquity; we must get rid of this
          disposition, and the Gospel of salvation is expressly for the
          purpose of changing it, that we may receive the principles which
          prevail in heaven and are loved by the angels. It is possible for
          a man who loves the world to overcome that love, to get knowledge
          and understanding until he sees things as they really are, then
          he will not love the world but will see it as it is; he will see
          that it is in the hands of a Superior Being.
          Man cannot control the heavens; he cannot control the earth, nor
          the elements; he can fertilize and prepare the ground for the
          reception of seed; he can plant, water, till, and reap from the
          ground the fruit of his toil, but, until his mind is opened by
          the Spirit of God, he cannot see that it is by a superior power
          that corn, wheat, and every kind of vegetation spring into life,
          and ripen for the sustenance of man and beast. Is it possible for
          him to arrive at this knowledge? It is, and that is what we have
          brought the doctrine of life and salvation to you for, that you
          may exchange your low, narrow, contracted, selfish dispositions
          for the ennobling Spirit of the Lord, for the Spirit of the
          Gospel, which gives joy and peace. If you enjoy that, your food
          will be sweet to you, your sleep will be refreshing, and your
          days will pass away in usefulness.
          On the contrary, those who are covetous and greedy, anxious to
          grasp the whole world, are all the time uneasy, and are
          constantly laying their plans and contriving how to obtain this,
          that, and the other. Their minds are continually on the stretch
          to solve, "How can I obtain this farm, or that house and lot? How
          can I manage to get such and such teams? I want to get my lumber
          and adobies to build me a house, how can I manage and not pay
          much for them? I will deceive every man who comes nigh me; I will
          make him believe that my property is worth more than it is; I
          will sell ribbons for double their value, and I will ask forty
          cents a dozen for glass buttons that are worth only twenty, and
          in this way I will build a house for eighteen hundred dollars
          that will be worth four thousand."
          Their minds are so intent on cheating their brethren that they
          cannot sleep soundly, their nerves twitch and they have the jerks
          in their sleep, thinking, "How shall I manage with this man
          to-morrow? I want enough out of him to get my adobies." And they
          lie and think, and think, and contrive, and plan, and the devil
          helps them all the time to manage to cheat the Saints. If such
          men should get a few bushels of wheat, would they let the Saints
          have it? No, they would sell it to our enemies and feed them, and
          let the Saints starve.
          Again, it is known to all that a great many of the poor are as
          bad as those who have property; they are all the time in a sweat
          to know how to get their living without procuring it honestly.
          They are just as covetous and craving in their feelings as are
          the rich who hoard up their means and keep it from the honest
          poor; they are all the time scheming to get along without labor.
          There are many who live in this city without labor; I have
          neighbors near me that I do not believe get one cord of wood in
          the year, only as they steal it, and you have neighbors near you
          who steal your wood. If you want to keep your wood from the hands
          of these pilferers, you will have to put it in your houses, and
          if you want to keep your chickens, you will have to lock them up.
          I have often told you that we have all kinds of fish in the
          Gospel net; we have all kinds of poor, but after all the Lord's
          poor out number the poor devils.
          A few sinners mixed in a community make the whole appear
          dishonest and odious to the honest portion of the human family,
          because they have not the power to properly discriminate between
          them. I have to labor under the same disadvantage that you do,
          and if I know any of the infernal scoundrels I dare not tell of
          them, or point them out, unless I have a mind to. There are a
          great many guilty persons whom I wish to say nothing about; they
          are liars and thieves, and I know it; but I do not wish to expose
          their names, in hopes that they will repent and refrain from
          their bad practices.
          A likely man is a likely man, and a good man is a good man,
          whether in this Church or out of it; and a poor, miserable,
          sinful creature who gathers as a Saint, is worse than one who
          gathers as a Gentile. A person who is a thief, a liar, and a
          murderer in his heart, but professes to be a Saint, is more
          odious in the sight of God, angels and good men, than a person
          who comes out and openly declares that he is our enemy. I know
          how to take such a man, but a devil with a Saint's cloak on is
          one of the meanest characters you can imagine. I say, blessings
          on the head of a wicked Gentile who is my avowed enemy, far
          sooner than upon an enemy cloaked with a Saint's profession.
          There is one more difficulty in the minds of this community with
          regard to Saints and sinners, and that is in relation to the
          channel of our public trade. In the days of Joseph, men would
          come to me, men who are now in this Church, and some of whom are
          in this congregation, and say, "Brother Brigham, what do you
          think? I went down to brother Joseph's store, and I wanted to get
          a gallon of molasses, eight yards of calico, a little crockery,
          &c., and I could not have the articles without paying the money
          down. Do you think that is right?" I always had but one feeling
          with regard to such matters, since I have been a Latter-day
          Saint. My reply to such questions was, should he not be paid for
          his goods as well as anybody else? But the reply is, "I can go to
          the store of an enemy, of a man who does not profess to be a
          Saint, much less a Prophet, and he will trust me, though I hate
          to go there and run into debt."
          So he goes with his money to the enemy's store and buys a dress
          pattern, a piece of factory, some tea, a set of cups and saucers,
          a dozen knives and forks, boots and shoes for his wives and
          children, and them turns round and says, "God bless you," and
          "well done." But of Joseph's store it was, "God Almighty curse
          you, because you would not allow me to carry off your goods
          without pay for them."
          Hundreds of instances of this kind I have witnessed in this
          kingdom, and it is a great fault with many of this people. That
          is the reason why men who are not in the Church prosper and
          fatten on the wealth of this people, and the reason why I do not
          bring goods in sufficient quantities to supply this market. There
          is not a trader in this community who is paid better than are the
          Gentile merchants. I could bring plenty of goods into this city
          and Territory every year, were it not for this fact. I am going
          to keep this subject before the minds of the Latter-day Saints
          and pursue it, until such a practice is driven from their midst.
          Good men, who would give away their shoes and go barefoot, if
          they saw anybody else going barefoot, were tried because brother
          Joseph would not trust them.
          Brother Woolley was also a mercantile target for our shots in
          Nauvoo; I say "our," because I class myself with the Saints. The
          pious brethren, who were professedly so good, and loving sisters
          who went to brother Joseph's store, and could not get trusted,
          would go to the Gentiles and get trusted and pay them, and think
          that they had a right to neglect paying Joseph, because he was a
          Prophet, I presume.
          This community would do just so here, if I had a store of goods.
          They would come to my store and say, "Brother Brigham, I am poor
          and needy, my wife is feeble and needs a little tea and sugar,
          and a little medicine; I also want some crockery and a little
          clothing, can't you fill the bill?" Yes, if you will pay me for
          it. "Of course, I will pay you for all I get." How? "O, never
          question me about that, am I not good for five or ten dollar's
          worth?" Yes, but when are you good, and how? You are good to that
          Gentile store where you have run into debt, for you will sell
          your last cow, pawn the dress pattern you got there for your
          wife, and the tea cups and saucers, to pay the money to that
          store keeper; but if you trade ten dollars of fifty dollars on
          credit at brother Joseph's or brother Brigham's store, what next?
          There is no more about it, that is the end of it.
          I have known persons that would have cursed brother Joseph to the
          lowest hell hundreds of times, because he would not trust out
          everything he had on the face of the earth, and let the people
          squander it to the four winds. When he had let many of the
          brethren and sisters have goods on trust, he could not meet his
          liabilities, and then they would turn round and say, "What is the
          matter brother Joseph, why don't you pay your debts?" "It is
          quite a curiosity that you don't pay your debts; you must be a
          bad financier; you don't know how to handle the things of this
          world." At the same time the coats, pants, dresses, boots and
          shoes that they and their families were wearing came out of
          Joseph's store, and were not paid for when they were cursing him
          for not paying his debts.
          But that is nothing, "O," say they, "it is all in the family.
          Why, yes, brother Joseph, I will pay you just as quick as I can."
          The proof of this is with you, ye rich and poor Saints. I will
          ask the men who have helped the poor to this place from different
          countries, when they get a house, a horse, an ox, or a cow, and
          have accumulated the things of this world, do they often express
          themselves able to pay you? You will all say "no." I will hardly
          make one exception in this congregation, or in this kingdom.
          There is a sister from Wales, the wife of brother Dan Jones, who
          has expended thousands of pounds to help the poor to this place,
          and they have cursed her all the day long, and she has now to
          labor hard for the support of herself and children.
          Can we refer to other instances of this kind? We can. That is the
          great fault among this people, and I wished to lay it before them
          that they may learn the truth, and their duty to each other. Let
          the Latter-day Saints be as punctual in paying the merchant who
          belongs to the Church of God, as they are in paying a miserable
          scoundrel, who would take all their money and then turn round and
          cut their throats, or ask a mob to do it, but thank God such
          characters are very scarce here. But no, a great many of this
          people will sustain their enemies, will feed, and clothe them,
          and trade off their wheat and cattle to them, and foster them in
          their wickedness, while those very persons would cut the throats
          of the Saints, if they could get along as well without trading
          with them. And at the same time that which they owe to their
          brethren in this kingdom who have helped them here, and who have
          blessed them all the time, never comes due, and they, perhaps,
          never think of it any more.
          Have you the proof of all this before your eyes? You have. I have
          hundreds and thousands of dollars owing to me by this community
          and contracted upon a fair business principle. People will say,
          "O, brother Brigham, won't you let me have a team? I must have a
          horse; won't you let me have this wagon? I very much need a cow;
          won't you help me in my building? And won't you do this? And I
          wish you would do that; and could you not do the other?" And the
          pay never comes. But you will go to a Gentile and run into debt,
          and sell your last cow to pay that wicked man. You may say, "O,
          that is only in our business transactions." Is not the upbuilding
          of the kingdom of God on earth a temporal labor all the time? It
          will be built up by physical force and means, by manual labor
          more than by any particular mental effort of the mind. Suppose
          that one Elder was left alone among the inhabitants of the earth,
          and that he should begin, with all the power of his mind, to
          imagine himself in England, Scotland, France, Germany, Denmark,
          Sweden, or anywhere else, and still sit in one place, saying,
          "now I am laboring in the kingdom of God, it is a spiritual
          labor." What real good would he accomplish? Not any.
          You know the old theory is that the kingdom of God, and all
          pertaining to it, is spiritual and not temporal; that is the
          traditional notion of our brother Christians. But a person may
          merely think until he goes down to the grave, and he will never
          be the means of saving one soul, not even his own, unless he adds
          physical labor to his thinking. He must think, and pray, and
          preach, and toil and labor with mind and body, in order to build
          up Zion in the last days. You cannot build your house, nor gather
          up your substance and come to this place from different nations
          by mere thinking, it also requires physical labor. If we attend
          to the things of the kingdom of God, and nothing else in good
          weather, we can do everything else, that is necessary to be done,
          in rainy and bad weather.
          If we talk to you and you sit and hear, that involves labor, and
          everything connected with building up Zion requires actual,
          severe labor. It is nonsense to talk about building up any
          kingdom except by labor; it requires the labor of every part of
          our organization, whether it be mental, physical, or spiritual,
          and that is the only way to build up the kingdom of God. Hence,
          what I have been laying before you is directly pertaining to the
          building up of that kingdom.
          Will the people still take a course to feed strangers, and let
          their brethren starve? They will not. I say to every man who has
          wheat, set the poor to building your houses, to making fences,
          opening farms, or doing something, and hand out your grain to
          them. And if those who wish to speculate in grain, in consequence
          of the scarcity through drought and the ravages of the
          grasshoppers, come and offer you money for your grain, do not
          sell a bushel for five, ten, or twenty dollars, but tell them,
          "no, our wheat is to feed the poor Saints, and no one else." If
          you do not do this, I am watching you. Do you know that I have my
          threads strung all through the Territory, that I may know what
          individuals do? If you do not pursue a righteous course, we will
          separate you from the Church. Is that all? No, if necessary we
          will take your grain from your bin and distribute it among the
          poor and needy, and they shall be fed and supplied with work, and
          you shall receive what your grain is worth. 
          There is plenty for all who are now in the Territory, and for all
          that will come in this fall. Talk about staring to death! How do
          you suppose you could? You could not enter a house in these
          mountains, where there is one potato left, and tell them that you
          were perishing for food, but what the inmates of that house would
          divide with you; I say, not one, whether belonging to Jew or
          Gentile, Saint or sinner. This is speaking to the praise of those
          who have the grain.
          I do not believe that there is a grain owner in this Territory
          who does not feel just as liberal as he need to; at least, I know
          of no one but what wishes to do right. One man, who had a fine
          crop of grain, came to this city, and was offered three dollars a
          bushel for it; he said, "shall I take that? or what shall I do
          with it?" I replied, let us have it in the Tithing Store, and we
          will distribute it to the poor.
          Flour is six dollars per hundred in that store. What was it last
          year? Six dollars. You cannot starve to death, because those who
          have got the grain are willing to divide with you. If you should
          happen to get hungry you could run to your neighbors for a
          pumpkin or a squash, and they would even jump out of bed to serve
          you, in case you chanced to call upon them late in the night.
          There is no law in this country against begging, therefore, if
          need be, we can beg from one another, and from Him who gave it
          all, so we cannot starve to death.
          Go without eating two or three days! Bless your souls, I know not
          what it is to go without food since I have been a "Mormon." I
          could travel over the earth without purse or scrip, and not be
          obliged to go hungry. Before I knew "Mormonism" I was acquainted
          with straitened circumstances, but it has clothed and fed me, and
          blessed me all the day long.
          We have now held our meeting for three hours and a half, and
          after singing we will dismiss for one hour.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, October 6, 1855
                          Heber C. Kimball, October 6, 1855
               Remarks made by President H. C. Kimball, in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 6, 1855.
          I do not wish to detain the congregation long, still I do not
          think that those who have the spirit of a Saint are tired and
          wish the meeting to come to a close. Every word I have heard
          to-day is salvation and the very quintessence of righteousness,
          and I assure you that I have enjoyed myself more under what I
          have heard to-day, than I ever did in the best party that I ever
          attended. True, I have enjoyed myself extremely well when I have
          been with my brethren in the dance, but, gentlemen and ladies,
          what we have heard to-day is salvation and eternal lives to us,
          if we will listen to and obey it.
          I am thankful that the time has come when brother Brigham is
          disposed to lift the evil and expose the iniquities of men, if
          they are not willing to expose them themselves. I know they were
          exposed in the days of Joseph, and brother Brigham, myself, and
          many others were with him and stood by him to the day of his
          death, and do still. When their iniquities were exposed, men whom
          we thought much of, and those whom we thought nothing of, turned
          away from the faith. They were poor, miserable, rotten-hearted
          creatures; we knew that, and knew it when we were in England, and
          when we came home; and because we would not pamper and flatter
          those poor, miserable devils, they became our enemies and the
          enemies of Joseph.
          Joseph would many times ostensibly hold men up to see whether
          this people would worship them, to see whether they had
          discernment enough to know the difference between a righteous man
          and a wicked one, and if we preferred the society of a blackleg,
          or of a whoremaster, or of any other abominable character, he was
          perfectly willing that we should have the opportunity to prove
          Now we are here in the mountains, and am I not glad? Yes, I am
          glad, and I rejoice exceedingly, and if I am concealing
          wickedness or iniquity, I say, let it be exposed, that others by
          seeing it may repent and forsake their sins. Men will often tell
          what they will do--that they are willing to lay down their lives
          for the sake of this Gospel and for their brethren, but the thing
          is to come and do it, while at the same time they are not willing
          to pay their tithing, nor do anything else that is required of
          them. He is no Saint who will not fulfil the requirements of
          Brother Brigham is a servant to this people, and he serves you
          and waits upon you by night and by day, and his associates are
          willing to do whatever they are called upon. He is your servant,
          and I am your servant, but if you do not treat your servants well
          while in this time, I am afraid that when they come to what is
          called eternity, you will not have the privilege of troubling
          them much. Therefore, listen with hearing ears and understanding
          hearts; walk up like men to do what God requires at your hands,
          and be willing to come to the light that your sins may be
          revealed; and if your sins are revealed and you repent of them,
          there are men who can tell you what road to take and what
          atonement to make, that you may be set in the road which leads to
          life, and if you will not be corrected you will be damned as sure
          as the sun will again set.
          What is called "Mormonism" is the delight of my heart; this
          people are the pride of my heart, and I wish that every one would
          do right, keep the commandments of the Lord, and listen to those
          correct principles that are taught them from time to time. Some
          will come with great zeal and anxiety, saying, "I want my
          endowments; I want my washings and anointings; I want my
          blessings; I wish to be sealed up to eternal lives; I wish to
          have my wife sealed and my children sealed to me;" in short, "I
          desire this and I wish that." What good would all this do you, if
          you do not live up to your profession and practise your religion?
          Not as much good as for me to take a bag of sand and baptize it,
          lay hands upon it for the gift of the Holy Ghost, wash it and
          anoint, and then seal it up to eternal lives, for the sand will
          be saved, having filled the measure of its creation, but you will
          not, except through faith and obedience. Those little pebbles and
          particles of sand gather themselves together and are engaged, as
          with one heart and mind, to accomplish a purpose in nature. Do
          they not keep the mighty ocean in its place by one united
          exertion? And if we were fully united we could resist and
          overcome every evil principle there is on earth or in hell.
          Let us all listen with care and attention to the counsels that
          are given and that have been given unto us today, for they are
          more precious and delicious to me than the sweetest thing I ever
          tasted in this life. Shall we sit down and not rebuke sin?
          If you oppose any of the works of God you will cultivate a spirit
          of apostacy. If you oppose what is called the "spiritual wife
          doctrine," the Patriarchal Order, which is of God, that course
          will corrode you with a spirit of apostacy, and you will go
          overboard; still a great many do so, and strive to justify
          themselves in it, but they are not justified of God. When you
          take that course you put a knife to brother Brigham's breast, and
          to the breasts of his associates; and more or less so when you
          oppose anything which God has instituted for His glory and the
          exaltation of man. I do not like such conduct myself, and I am
          opposed to such characters; I do not ask any favors of them, and
          I have often said that I never want one of them to darken my
          door. I am against them and God is against them, and I am for
          sustaining His cause, the cause of my Father who dwells in the
          heavens; the cause of His Son, and the cause that brother Joseph
          has been the means of bringing forth by the revelations of Jesus
          Christ. We sustained Joseph in this cause in his day, and we
          sustain the same cause now, and we will sustain it for ever, and
          that is our desire and prayer from this time henceforth, God
          helping of us.
          The principle of plurality of wives never will be done away
          although some sisters have had revelations that, when this time
          passes away and they go through the veil, every woman will have a
          husband to herself. I wish more of our young men would take to
          themselves wives of the daughters of Zion, and not wait for us
          old men to take them all; go ahead upon the right principle,
          young gentlemen, and God bless you for ever and ever, and make
          you fruitful, that we may fill the mountains and then the earth
          with righteous inhabitants. That is my prayer, and that is my
          blessing upon all the Saints and upon your posterity after you,
          for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, October 6, 1855
                         Jedediah M. Grant, October 6, 1855
                Remarks made by President J. M. Grant, in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 6, 1855.
          I am pleased with the general spirit manifested through the
          servants of the Lord who have spoken to us to-day. I was pleased,
          during the forenoon, with the freedom that seemed to pervade the
          mind of our President and the mind of Elder Kimball. I am pleased
          with the freedom of our Patriarch, Elder John Young, this
          afternoon, and I believe the doctrine which he has advanced to be
          correct; it is substantially this, all persons shall be judged
          according to their works. I am aware the old maxim was that men
          would be judged according to the death they might die, but the
          Latter-day Saints believe that men will be judged by the life
          they live, and not by the death they die. We believe that a man
          will be rewarded according to his works, for it is not written
          that he shall be rewarded according to his ordination, or the
          special situation or place in which he may be called to act in
          the Church of God; but it is written, and that law, I believe,
          has never been revoked by high heaven, or by any of its legates
          to earth; hence it stands immutable, that all men shall be
          rewarded according to their works.
          This is the doctrine that our Patriarch has been laboring to
          impress upon your minds this afternoon. I think it is very
          wholesome; I am satisfied with it; it is sweet to my taste; it is
          good that all men in the different dispensations of the Almighty,
          each in his situation, calling, capacity, and sphere of action,
          are to be, and of right should be, rewarded according to his
          works. We do not wish to reverse this law in relation to our
          enemies, we only wish them to be rewarded according to their
          works; we do not desire to warp the law in the least.
          I am aware that many suppose that we entertain some unchristian
          feelings to those out of the Church, but this is a mistake; we
          only wish that persons who have shed the blood of our Apostles
          may be rewarded just according to their works. And we expect
          that, sooner or later, they will have meted out to them that
          reward which the Almighty actually knows that they deserve. When
          speaking of governors, rulers, kings, emperors, judges, and
          officers of nations and states, would we wish to reverse the
          general law that every person shall be rewarded according to
          their works? No. It would not do to have some men die as soon as
          many might desire, for they would not meet their proportionate
          reward on the earth.
          I like to meditate upon this doctrine, I like to see its
          practical workings, rewarding every man according to his works;
          and I expect that the day will come when all Latter-day Saints
          will be perfectly satisfied with it.
          I am fully aware that many people have been bred and raised in
          poor-pussyism all their days, both in America and in Europe, and
          when they hear doctrines and principles taught by men who speak
          as freedom permits them, and as freemen have a right to speak,
          those who are clothed with the garments of poor-pussyism get the
          grunts; well, grunt on until you grunt it all out. The Latter-day
          Saints who enjoy the light of the Lord, that power which loves
          the intelligence of heaven and imparts it to the faithful, thank
          the Lord that we expect that our elder brother, Jesus Christ,
          will give unto us according to our works. We expect that he will
          be rewarded according to his works, and that his associates will
          be rewarded according to theirs, and if our works are not good we
          ask for no good reward.
          It is not according to the nation a man sprung from, nor
          according to the parentage or line of descent he came through,
          that he is to be rewarded; it is not so written. But it is
          written in the book of God emanating from high heaven, from the
          courts above, that kings, emperors, rulers, and all men on the
          earth, high and low, shall be rewarded according to their works.
          Do the people of God understand this? Do all the Saints, in their
          individual capacities, understand this? The doctrine is
          applicable to the nations and states. Is it not applicable to all
          people? It is.
          "Why," says one, "bless my soul, you do not say that it is
          applicable to females, do you?" Yes I do. "Oh, dear, what will
          the FIRST wife do in that case?" Why, bless your poor soul, she
          will be rewarded according to her works. That is the doctrine,
          and, thank God, there is no other way. You cannot alter it; you
          cannot revoke this eternal law. If a man has fifty wives and the
          fiftieth is the best, does the most good, she will get the
          greatest reward, in spite of all the grunting on the part of the
          first one. 
          In the Church of God, if a Teacher, a Priest, or Deacon, has the
          best works, if his labours are the most, if his acts are the most
          righteous in magnifying his calling to the utmost, he is better
          off than any man in the Church who does not magnify his calling.
          Is this doctrine applicable to ordained men in the Church? Yes,
          to every man of God, whether he be a Priest, Teacher, Member,
          Elder, or Apostle; each person will be rewarded according to his
          works. Is it applicable in families? Yes. "Oh," says one, "That
          makes me feel bad; my poor wife, my dear loving wife, the wife of
          my youth and the companion of my toils, what will she think of
          this? Bless me, I tremble for her." If her works are better, if
          her righteousness exceeds that of the rest of your wives, if she
          has more philantrophy, greater charity, and deserves more than
          they, she will get more. But if her works are not equal to those
          of some of the balance, she will still be rewarded according to
          her works.
          I like the doctrine; I can swallow it without greasing my mouth.
          It is a first-rate doctrine, and is a goodly part of the real
          faith, virtue, root and marrow of "Mormonism." Yes, it is
          applicable in families, thank God, and in the Church of God, in
          quorums, in councils, and in every other organized body; it
          applies to the world which we inhabit, and to every thing that is
          in heaven.
          I know that there are hundreds of thousands of men out of this
          Church, and do we like them? Yes. When we talk against men out of
          the Church do we mean to be understood as speaking against good
          men--men who wish to do right? No; but we mean the poor devils
          and the devil's poor, that's the idea.
          To righteous and honorable men who have true integrity, in them
          we say, "God bless you," for that is the way we feel towards all
          such the wide world over. God bless the righteous, whether they
          are in the Church or out of it. And God bless the righteous
          Saints in the Church;, and in all the families of God's people. I
          am backing up what brother John has been speaking. I want the
          Saints to do right and be blessed, which may God grant, in the
          name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Parley
          P. Pratt, October 7, 1855
                          Parley P. Pratt, October 7, 1855
                          OF ISRAEL--THE COMING OF CHRIST.
             A Discourse, by Elder P. P. Pratt, Delivered in the Bowery,
                       Great Salt Lake City, October 7, 1855.
          We wish the entire attention of the congregation; the assembly
          being so vast, it will almost be impossible for the speaker to be
          heard unless there is great order and strict attention. We wish
          no disturbance on the outskirts of the assembly, as we wish all
          to hear.
          I will read for the edification of the assembly, a portion of the
          21st chap. of Luke, contained in what is called King James'
          translation of the New Testament, from the 5th to the 36th verse.
          I will remind those who hear me this day of one fact which can be
          clearly demonstrated to the mind of every careful reader of the
          Scriptures, and which fact is a guarantee, as it were, to the
          rational mind, for the manner of the fulfilment of that which is
          future; it is this, that the prophecies contained in the Holy
          Bible, spoken by Moses and the Prophets, Jesus and the Apostles,
          have been fulfilled literally and naturally, so far as they have
          been fulfilled at all. Not in the sense, however, that modern
          blindness and priestcraft have tried to throw over them, but in a
          plain and common sense, as plain as if a man were to rise here
          and tell that the wall around this Temple Block would be
          overthrown, and not one stone left upon another, and then tell
          the circumstances that would transpire before it, and in
          connection with it, and after it, and then it afterwards be
          fulfilled and recorded in history; so plain, so clear, so full,
          and so exact have the predictions of the Prophets of God, and the
          Apostles of God, and of the Son of God been fulfilled, except
          such portions as remain to be fulfilled.
          Keep that one fact in view, and then search the prophecies, and
          trace them out; search history for their fulfilment, and give
          diligent heed to the things that are written, for these are the
          commandments not only of the ancient Apostles and Prophets, but
          of the Apostles and Prophets of the last days.
          Jesus himself, while he travelled upon the earth in his mortal
          tabernacle, read the Scriptures to the people, "he opened the
          book and taught;" his manner was to do it in the synagogue every
          Sabbath day--he exhorted them to search into the things that were
          And after he had risen from the dead, and received all power in
          heaven and on earth, he referred his disciples to that which was
          On a certain occasion he said, "O fools and slow of heart to
          believe that which the Prophets have written."
          When he appeared to the Nephites, in his risen body, as you will
          find it written in the Book of Mormon, he took pains to refer
          them to the written prophecies of Isaiah and many others, and
          quoted many of them, and exhorted the people to search the things
          contained in the prophecies of Isaiah diligently, bearing
          testimony of their literal fulfilment; and said he, "A
          commandment I give unto you that ye search these things
          diligently, "for they have been fulfilled, and will be fulfilled
          according to that which is written, not in some other way.
          Not only are we included in these general exhortations and
          commandments of the ancients, and of Jesus Christ himself, but
          the same commandments have been renewed to us by our great
          Prophet and founder, Joseph Smith, and by our Prophets and
          Apostles that still live.
          How often have they told us to treasure up the words of God,
          those things that are written for our profit and learning, and to
          search diligently and treasure up in our hearts continually words
          of wisdom from the best books.
          Says the word of God through Joseph Smith to this people, search
          the Scriptures, treasure them up in your hearts, put them in a
          good store-house--the store-house of your memory; then the Holy
          Spirit will be at liberty when you are called up to teach others
          to select from that well-stored treasure things new and old.
          It is not to study up what you shall say particularly, but to
          treasure up truth in your hearts, to have them well filled with
          it, kept well stored, and then give free liberty to the Spirit of
          God to operate upon you, to collect out of that treasure that
          portion which will be best suited to the wants and condition of
          men who do not treasure up the words of life.
          If the Holy Spirit should come upon a man of that description to
          select out of that store-house, he would find it empty, and he
          would have the trouble of putting it there, or it would not be
          there; hence he would be barren and unfruitful.
          Search the Scriptures, ye Saints of the Most High; among all your
          cares, and all your duties, search the Scriptures of the Old and
          New Testaments, of the Book of Mormon, and the revelations of God
          that have been written for our profit and learning.
          And to the young people among us, a generation brought up amid
          the hurry, toil, and cares of a new country, I say do not neglect
          to treasure up in your hearts the history, and the prophecies,
          and their fulfilment, and the promises, and hopes shadowed forth
          therein, and the doctrines, and principles, and examples left on
          You may say you have not time; take those portions of time you
          would otherwise devote to something less useful. We all have time
          to do it. I have been as hard working in my day as any other man,
          perhaps, and I always had time to do it, and always have done it,
          and it was by the light that shone in a dark place, diligently
          and prayerfully searched out, and the Holy Spirit that shone upon
          the understanding, through the prayer of faith, and through
          diligent search, that caused me to see, and understand, and lay
          hold on certain things that came in fulfilment of these
          If any one asks how I came to be a Latter-day Saint, or what some
          people would call a "Mormon," a follower of Joseph Smith, the
          modern Prophet, I answer, it was because I had given heed to the
          sentiments of truth from my early youth, carefully and
          prayerfully searching and believing them; it was because the Holy
          Spirit rested upon me, and opened my understanding to the same
          through the prayer of faith, and diligent search. It was because
          that the Holy Spirit gave me clearly to understand that this
          modern Prophet, and the fulness of the Gospel restored by him,
          had come in fulfilment of certain promises made by the ancient
          Prophets and Apostles; that is the reason why I really embraced
          the fulness of the Gospel which the world calls "Mormonism."
          Let us review the things we have read, and make a few remarks
          upon them.
          Some of the disciples, feeling proud of their great temple, or
          national house of God, and feeling to rejoice in its workmanship,
          beauty, grandeur, and probably flattering themselves it would
          endure for ever as the great centre of the Jewish worship for all
          nations, they called the attention of Jesus to it, saying,
          "Master, see what manner of stones and buildings are here."
          "Why," said Jesus, "the days will come when there will not be
          left one of these stones on the top of another."
          Does that need spiritualising? Does it need some learned man from
          a college to tell you what that means, and give you the spiritual
          sense of it? It had but one sense, and that a child could
          "The days will come when there will not be one of those beautiful
          stones left upon another, that shall not be thrown down." In the
          Indian phraseology they inquired how many moons first, or in
          other words, "Master, when shall these things be, and what sign
          will there be when these things transpire?" Jesus begins to tell
          them some of the things that would immediately happen in their
          The first thing he calls their attention to, among the things
          that had been transpiring, was, that a great many deceivers
          should come and profess to be Christ, saying. "I am Christ, but
          do not go after them, take care and not be deceived by them."
          The reason of this was that the Jews were looking for a Messiah,
          and for a deliverance from the Roman yoke, and for their national
          independance to be restored to them; and for their city, and
          temple, and nation, to be the seat of government for all nations,
          a universal theocracy.
          They were looking for this, and they had rejected the true
          Messiah, and were about to kill him, and were looking for another
          to fulfil what all men were in the expectation of; for the old
          Prophets had told them that such a day would come, in relation to
          that nation, and their city Jerusalem, and the temple; that the
          throne of God would be there; that the tabernacle of God would be
          there; that there would be one king and one Lord, and his name
          one; that all the nations of the earth would come up to
          worship--the nations they were acquainted with in that country.
          They had reason to look for that day, because the old Prophets
          had foretold it, and John the Baptist came along as a special
          Prophet, and nearly all that people had received him as a
          Prophet, professedly, though in reality, some of them received
          him, and he told them some of those things were about to be
          He had told them about their king, about the Lamb of God, about
          the Messiah, and that they must repent and be baptized for the
          remission of their sins, and make his paths strait.
          With this double assurance, first the testimony of their old
          Prophets, and secondly the renewed testimony of a new Prophet, to
          immediately prepare for the fulfilment of some of the old
          prophecies; with this double assurance they were looking for some
          body to do something, and that pretty largely too; and as they
          had rejected the true king--the true Messiah, of course they
          would be looking for somebody, that ambitious spirits would
          enter, and they would rise up and tell the people, "I am he you
          look for; set me up, and I will deliver you from the Roman yoke,
          I will break your fetters, and bring about the restoration of
          your national independance."
          "Don't you be deceived," says Jesus, "for many of those who would
          not hearken to me will come, saying, 'I am Christ,' but do not go
          after them." These very things happened in those days, for which
          you may read history.
          "When you hear of wars and commotion, be not terrified, for these
          things must first come to pass, but the end is not yet; nation
          shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom"--which
          had been a common thing, and was then--"great earthquakes, and
          famine, and pestilence, and great sights from heaven."
          Go and read Josephus, and read about these things being fulfilled
          in that same age.
          "But before all these things shall take place, they shall lay
          their hands upon you."
          Some people have been in the habit of trying to apply every
          scripture to every body in every age; they had need to give heed
          to the exhortation of Paul to Timothy, "Show thyself a workman
          that need not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth,
          giving to every one their portion," not everything that is
          written for every body in every age.
          Jesus was talking to Peter, James, and John, and to the rest of
          his immediate followers. "They will lay their hands on you,
          Peter, on you, James, and on you, John, and also upon others, and
          they will persecute you, delivering you up to the synagogues and
          into prisons, and you shall be brought before kings and rulers
          for my name's sake." And of which, I need not observe, was
          literally fulfilled in that age, the New Testament itself bearing
          record of it in part; "this shall turn to you for a testimony."
          That is as much as to say, when this happens to you that I have
          foretold, it will be a witness and a testimony--it will be
          another proof; therefore, instead of mourning about it, and
          feeling down-hearted, understand that I have before told you it
          must be. And when you are brought before rulers for my name's
          sake, do not study up a speech beforehand to speak in
          self-defence, for I will give you a mouth, and wisdom which all
          your adversaries will not be able to gainsay nor resist.
          Read the New Testament--the history of Peter and the Twelve, of
          Stephen and of Paul, and see if they had not a mouth and wisdom
          that confounded their enemies when they were afterwards summoned
          before the different authorities, and kings, and magistrates, in
          fulfilment of this promise.
          "Ye shall be betrayed both by parents, and brethren, and
          kinsfolks, and friends; and some of you shall they cause to be
          put to death." This was fulfilled in the circumstances of James,
          the brother of the Lord, whom they killed with the sword,
          according to the New Testament. It was fulfilled in the case of
          Peter, in the case of the stoning of Stephen to death; it was
          fulfilled literally in many instances in that age.
          "And he shall be hated of all men for my name's sake." Nations
          were not singing the name of Jesus then as they are now by
          tradition, but the bare mention of his name gave a shock to the
          wicked, to kings and rulers.
          Go to Illinois and Missouri, and mention Joseph Smith to the mob
          that tried to butcher and kill him, and drive the Saints; go
          where they reside, and say, Joseph Smith, the Prophet, and it
          would not cause a greater shock, greater rage and hate, more
          bitter feelings than it would in those days to mention the name
          of that crucified Nazarene; "Ye shall be hated of all men for my
          name's sake," that is, because you will be running from place to
          place, making use of my name--making mention of what nearly
          everybody considers the name of an impostor and deceiver.
          "That deceiver said he would rise again from the dead on the
          third day," said some of those pious Jews after they had killed
          him, applying the same terms they now apply to the modern
          To go about and preach his name then was not that pleasant thing
          it is now in Christendom; I assure you, it was a cross, and
          nothing but the Spirit of truth, inspired in the heart of man,
          would give him boldness enough to do it. "But there shall not a
          hair of your head perish; in your patience possess ye your
          Now, then, comes the thing the Apostles asked about, after he had
          told them the preliminary leading to it; filling up the
          interstices of time, he gets at length to the destruction of that
          temple--to the throwing down of those beautiful stones. "When ye
          see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know the desolation
          thereof is nigh." Does that need any spiritualizing? 
          Go and read Josephus, read the history of the Roman army under
          Titus, the Roman general, who came up and laid siege against that
          city and surrounded it with the Roman legions; and then read the
          history of the war. It took place at the time when almost the
          whole nation had poured into that devoted city, just as you have
          poured into Salt Lake City, only we are a mere handful compared
          with that great nation; they had come into one of the great
          Conferences that happened about once a year; it was during the
          time that tens of thousands and hundreds of thousands that come
          into Jerusalem, from all the surrounding country, that they were
          laid siege to by the Roman army.
          The city was blockaded--none could escape. Besides this there
          were several factions within the city; Jews were at war with Jews
          under different leaders. This made a desolating war within, while
          the enemy was encamped without; and besides all this, famine
          overtook them, and pestilence caused by want, and by being
          crowded and shut up in the city, and by the dead bodies with no
          place to bury them.
          Hence with sword, famine, pestilence, &c., Jerusalem began to be
          desolated. "Now when you see this, understand that the desolation
          thereof is nigh. Then let them which are in Judea flee to the
          mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out,
          and let not them that are in the countries enter therein."
          Some of our Sectarian friends tell us that Jesus Christ did not
          preach a gathering; he only preached the Gospel, and then let the
          people live right where they had a mind to. But here is a
          positive revelation from the Son of God, to those that would give
          heed to his warning voice, to actually remove to the mountains in
          order to escape the war, the troubles, and pestilence that
          awaited the Jews and Jerusalem.
          Now if we had all the history of those times; if we only had what
          the Apostles have written, in full, instead of a little of it, we
          should have the particular place where they did go, and where
          they lived, you would have an account of the organization of a
          gathered people taking care of themselves, while war desolated
          the nation. We have not got this part of ancient history, but we
          will have it, for there is nothing secret but what will be
          revealed--hid but what will be brought to light.
          When God sees fit we will have the record of the fulfilment of
          this gathering; of every man, woman, and child that heeded the
          warning of the blessed Jesus. About seventy years after the birth
          of Christ, which was about the date that the Roman army compassed
          Jerusalem, I warrant you they left Judea and Jerusalem, and
          gathered into the mountains to take care of themselves. This is
          the very period of Christian history I would every much like to
          read--how they conducted themselves when they were gathered
          together, and how they maintained themselves when their nation
          and temple were crumbling to the dust.
          Let them which are in the midst of it depart out, and let not
          them that are in the country enter thereinto." We are given to
          understand that there was a little time after the Roman army had
          laid siege to Jerusalem, in consequence of a certain movement of
          that army, that gave a chance to the people in the city that were
          wide awake, to gather. If they would give heed to the warning
          voice of Jesus, or to the words of his Apostles, not to come down
          from the house top, or stop to get their bed, but run with all
          their might, they could escape. A little moment of relaxation,
          and advantageous position of the army, made escape possible to
          those who would not stop to take their clothes out of the house,
          their bed, or anything else, but flee at once.
          "For these be the days of vengeance." Vengeance on what? On the
          people of the Jews and on all the people of Jerusalem that had
          rejected the Gospel, that had rejected and killed the true
          Messiah, and persecuted and killed the Apostles, and his
          "These be the days of vengeance." What for? That all things that
          were written may be fulfilled, not spiritualized, nor
          transformed, no done away, but absolutely fulfilled.
          What did he mean by that saying? Go and read Moses; I shall not
          trouble myself to give chapter and verse; go and read Moses and
          the Prophets and see if they do not predict the horrors of war to
          that age, and desolation, even to the eating of their own
          children for mere want, because of the pressure of the famine;
          "even the tender and delicate women," says Moses, "who would not
          venture to put the soles of their feet on the ground for
          tenderness and delicacy, should eat their own children in the
          siege and the straightness whereby your enemies shall distress
          you in all your gates, if you will not hearken to my words." He
          also predicted that the Lord God would raise up a Prophet like
          unto him, and the people should hear him in all things whatsoever
          he should say unto them, and every soul that would not hear him,
          should be cut off from among the people.
          What do our enemies complain of us about? For believing we must
          hearken to the Prophet of the Lord which we profess to have among
          us--Joseph Smith, and Brigham Young, or whoever it may be. "They
          believe," say our enemies, "that they must hearken to their
          Prophet in all things whatsoever he shall say unto them." Just as
          though it was a new thing; that is what they are mad at us about;
          it is the main point that is found fault with from California to
          Maine, and throughout Europe, by editors and priests.
          Everywhere the word is, "what is the matter with the Mormons in
          Utah? They hold to that abominable principle of hearkening to all
          things the Prophet of God says to them." O dear, what hurt does
          that do? It gives them power--they will all vote one way.
          We are not the only people that are troubled with that doctrine,
          and this is not the only age that has had that kind of trouble to
          contend with.
          Moses had laid it down, that they should not only give heed to
          his word, and if they did not they should be destroyed, and have
          to eat their own children while their enemies besieged them, but
          that they should give heed also to another Prophet that should
          arise, and that too in all things whatsoever he should say unto
          them; and if they did not, they should be cut off from among the
          But that part of "Mormonism" is very ancient, and applied to
          Moses, and to Christ, and to every Prophet that has ever been
          sent to lead the people.
          "These be the days of vengeance, that all things that are written
          may be fulfilled." I have quoted a little of what has been
          "But woe unto them that are with child and to those that give
          suck in those days." What kind of a woe is this? "Eternal hell,"
          says one. That is not the meaning; but the language signifies
          that it will be hard on those who are in that situation in those
          days; they will have trouble because they will not be in
          circumstances to flee from their enemies; it will be very
          inconvenient indeed for them to escape; therefore sorrow to them;
          it will be hard on them; they are to be pitied.
          I used to think, when I was a boy, that every time the Scriptures
          said woe, it meant eternal hell. I did not understand very much
          of the Scriptures then; in this instance Christ was simply
          speaking of the trouble and inconvenience it would be to those
          who had little children.
          I have often thought how much more merciful God is to the
          Latter-day Saints, in telling them not to go in hast nor by
          flight, without stopping to get their coat, their garment, or
          their bed; he has not told them to escape empty-handed; I feel
          thankful for this mercy.
               On the other hand, I have thought that we have had some
          burdens to bear, over and above what they had, which makes the
          thing about even.
          "For there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon
          this people." That is, in the land of Judea, upon the Jews, and
          in that city.
          "And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and they shall be
          led away captive among all nations, and Jerusalem"--what will
          become of it finally?--"shall be trodden down of the gentiles,
          until"--that is a big word, and means much in the position it
          occupies here--"UNTIL"--on that word is suspended that nation's
          fate, and the fate of all the neighboring nations--"Jerusalem
          shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the
          Gentiles be fulfilled."
          I tell you there is meaning in these words, contained in that
          single line. O ye nations of the earth, if I had the voice of an
          angel's trump, that I could be heard to earth's remotest bounds,
          by kings, rulers, captains, generals, armies, and nations, I
          would wish to read that one line in their ears, and tell them the
          things that are summed up in it.
          "Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the gentiles until the times
          of the gentiles be fulfilled." What is meant by it? One thing we
          know certain, we have no need to conjecture, that is, that all
          these things happened literally. The Roman army on the outside,
          and the three factions on the inside of the city of Jerusalem,
          and the famine, and the pestilence helping it on, performed their
          work until finally it came to an end by the city being taken by
          the Romans, the temple set on fire, and burned, and the whole
          city desolated, and brought under Gentile rule, namely, Roman
          rule. And it is said, in the history written by Josephus, that
          one million and a half of Jews perished in that siege, that is,
          in that one city, in putting an end to a national polity; a
          national corrupted form of government, a national priesthood, a
          national house of worship.
          One million and a half perished! They fell by the edge of the
          sword, by pestilence, and by famine, and the remnants of the Jews
          were carried captive among all nations. To remain how long? As I
          have said, we know this prophecy has been literally fulfilled,
          for we see them scattered among all nations to this day.
          I have seen them in San Francisco, in Chili, in Scotland, in
          England, and in every part of the United States, and Canada; and
          wherever my brethren, the Elders of this Church, have been; I can
          assure them of one thing, if they have looked about them they
          have seen a Jew or Jews. Wherever there is a nation to be found,
          or a people of commerce, ships, camels, or any other means of
          conveyance, there will be found Jews; that we know.
          But about one stone of the temple at Jerusalem not being left one
          upon another--the fire itself would not do this--but history has
          informed us that the Jews concealed their treasures under the
          stones of the temple, and the Roman army went to work and tumbled
          them about, and did not leave one stone upon another, and finally
          they were removed.
          In fulfilment of another scripture, they took a plough and
          ploughed the temple site--so completely was the scripture
          Had I time I would quote the chapter and verse of this plowing,
          and the history which refers to it.
          Now then this last line I have read has been fulfilling until
          now; that is certain. The Jews are among all nations, in
          captivity--without being organized and nationalized; without
          being restored; without having returned to the God of their
          fathers; to His matchless power; to the administration of His
          Holy Spirit; to the enjoyment of heavenly communication, through
          Holy Prophets, by the revelations of God; to the administration
          of angels; to the enjoyment of the religion of their fathers, and
          to the power of God to defend them, and deliver them from their
          They have been 1800 years without these blessings. This is a fact
          foretold in this chapter, and literally fulfilled before the eyes
          of all men. All the nations know it that know anything about the
          Bible or about history.
          Now there was a time allotted for the Gentile powers to reign,
          for their corruptions to bear rule, and during the time here
          designated as the times of the Gentiles, the times of their
          polity, of their nationality, their religion, and to prove them
          and to see what they would do with the power committed unto
          them--the times spoken of by Daniel the Prophet, in which the
          fourth monarchy, namely, the Roman, and all those divisions, and
          subdivisions that should grow out of it in modern times, the
          times when these divided powers should bear rule.
          There is just as much a time for these to have their day and
          prove themselves, and bring forth the fruits of their rule, and a
          time for them to come to an end, as ever there was a time for
          Jerusalem to rule or for the Jewish polity to come to an end. Now
          when that time arrives, ye nations look out, for there is a
          prophecy gone forth about you; it is in these words, and recorded
          in the Old Testament; "Though I make a full end of all nations
          where I have scattered you, yet will I not make a full end of
          you," speaking of Israel.
          Now, when the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled there will be
          an uprooting of their governments and institutions, and of their
          civil, political, and religious polity. There will be a shaking
          of nations, a downfall of empires, an upturning of thrones and
          dominions, as Daniel has foretold, and the kingdom and power, and
          rule on the earth will return to another people, and exist under
          another polity, as Daniel has further foretold. But let me read
          it here, let Jesus speak in his own words, or the writer for him.
          Now understand that we have got down to the present time, that is
          sure with this prophecy, no man can mistake it. Jerusalem has
          been overthrown, and not one stone of that magnificent temple has
          been left upon another. A great portion of that nation fell by
          the edge of the sword, and the residue went captive among all
          nations, and their city has been trodden under foot of the
          Gentiles, and will be until their times are fulfilled, that is,
          until they have had their reign out. Then what will happen? We
          will read; "And there shall be signs in the sun." Has anybody
          seen them?--not away back among those other things; there were
          signs in the air then; Josephus tells you about it, and this book
          tells you about it, as I have been reading to-day in this
          chapter, about the signs which happened as a forerunner of the
          destruction of Jerusalem, and the Jews as a nation. Now after the
          Jews have remained among the Gentiles until the times of the
          Gentiles are fulfilled, as a forerunner of this latter overturn
          "there shall be signs in the sun and in the moon." Have any of
          you seen them during the last 30 years? I have. "And in the
          stars." Have you seen any signs in the stars? Think back for the
          last 30 years. "And upon the earth distress of nations, with
          perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring, men's hearts failing
          them for fear, and for looking after those things which are
          coming on the earth, for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
          And THEN"--not some other time. Are there any Millerites here who
          have been setting a time for the Son of Man to come? "Then shall
          they see the Son of Man coming in a cloud, with power and great
          glory." Not you, my disciples, whom I told a little while ago
          should be delivered up to the synagogues, and to prisons, and be
          beheaded, and suffer many things; not you whom I have warned to
          take heed lest you are deceived by false Christs that shall come
          to you; and when you should hear of wars and commotions to be not
          terrified, &c.; but Jesus Christ now directs his attention to
          another age; this does not refer to you my followers, you will be
          dead, and in paradise when these things that I now refer to shall
          take place. But THEY. Who? The people who shall live when the
          times of the Gentiles are fulfilled--when their reign is about to
          come to an end, the generation that will be alive when Jerusalem
          and the Jews are about to be restored, and the full end of all
          Gentile polity is about to usher in. "Then shall they see," those
          that shall live in those days. And what shall they see? "The Son
          of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory."
          That is the proud sight that is to be seen in connection with the
          end of the Gentile rule, or the breaking up of the Gentile
          nations, when their times are completed; when Jerusalem is to be
          rebuilt, to be no more trodden down nor governed by them, when
          the Jews are to be restored; and when there are signs in the sun,
          and in the moon, and in the stars, and upon the earth, men's
          hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after the things
          that are coming, then shall they see, not the crucified Jesus
          hanging upon the ignominious cross, mocked by the wicked Jews,
          not persecuted by a Herod, clothed in all the pomp and pride of
          Gentile authority, not a Roman army to overthrow and succeed the
          Jewish polity, but they shall see the Son of Man coming in a
          cloud clothed with great power and great glory.
          Do ye believe this, ye young people, ye boys and girls? Do ye
          believe this? All the prophetic sayings contained in this chapter
          have been fulfilled, down to this day. Do you believe that
          portion of it which is yet in the future, ye people of New-York,
          of San Francisco, of China, of London, of France? Do the Gentile
          nations believe this? You see the Jew among you, and the Gentile
          bearing rule; do you believe that this is a true prophecy? You
          ought to believe it, for it is right before your eyes in its
          fulfilment, and if you do, do you expect to see the Son of Man
          coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory? That
          is a sight some of you will see; you have only to live until the
          time comes, and you will see it.
          Whether there has been signs in the sun, moon, and stars, and
          upon the earth distress of nations, and perplexity, men's hearts
          failing them for fear, in the last few years, I will leave each
          one to draw his own conclusion. If this has not already been
          sufficiently fulfilled, one thing is certain, it is being
          fulfilled, and when it is sufficiently completed the Son of Man
          will be seen in heaven with power and great glory, as sure as you
          ever saw a Jew, that is, it is a fact. "And when these things
          begin to come to pass," for that is an important point, "then
          look up, and lift up your heads, for your redemption draweth
          nigh." Does it not appear a little strange that Peter, and James,
          and John, and the Jewish nation have to wait until then for their
          redemption, and the dead and the living, as well as the
          Latter-day Saints? They have to wait until then, whether in this
          world or in the other, for the redemption of their bodies, unless
          they died before Christ, and rose from the dead when he did, and
          the Jews must wait until then for the redemption of their nation
          and national polity, and for their triumph over their enemies,
          and for the putting down of all other power, and for the
          establishment of the reign righteousness on the earth, the
          redemption of their friends, and vengeance on all those who have
          shed the innocent blood whether of Latter-day Saints or
          Former-day Saints. This is the day of their redemption, be in
          what world they may, they are preparing for it. "Lift up your
          heads, for your redemption draweth nigh." When? Not when
          Jerusalem is compassed with armies, not when they (the Jews) are
          destroyed by the edge of the sword, not while wandering among the
          nations of the earth from age to age, not while the Gentile
          powers bear rule, but when the sun, moon, and stars shall put
          forth their signs, the heavens shake, and men's hearts failing
          them for fear, looking for the things that are coming upon the
          earth--then is the time to begin and look up, to lift up your
          heads and rejoice, ye spirits that are waiting for redemption,
          whether ye are in this world or in the other, straighten your
          backs in your hard toil, and look up, for your redemption draweth
          "And he spake to them a parable: Behold the fig trees and all the
          trees." We have not any fig trees here, but they had there. "And
          all the trees," embraces trees we have here. "When they now shoot
          forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh
          at hand." You do not need a Prophet to come along and prophesy
          that summer is nigh at hand, for even the children may know it.
          "So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye
          that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand."
          O ye Millerites, ye made a great mistake; you thought the first
          thing was the coming of the Lord in power and great glory; you
          were going to have him come immediately, without any kingdom to
          come to, without a forerunner in the shape of a Prophet, but just
          by men guessing, and predicting, and remarking, and commenting on
          the prophecies; but so far as the coming of the Lord being the
          first thing you knew, you will "begin to see these things come to
          pass, and then know that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand" and
          we have to be born again or we cannot see it.
          People hear of "Joe Smith," as he is called, of the Book of
          Mormon, of angels coming from heaven again; of the inspiration of
          the Holy Spirit; of modern Prophets and Apostles, and martyrs,
          and they think, "what under heaven does all this mean, we have no
          reason to look for anything of the sort, but we expect the Lord
          here every minute." They have no idea of a modern Prophet; of
          angels visiting the earth in the latter times; of modern
          inspiration; of a modern Church that will hearken to the voice of
          a Prophet in all things that he shall say unto them; it is all
          new to them, they are astonished, and say, "what does it mean, I
          wonder what is this Mormonism coming to?"
          The Lord will never come until he has organized his kingdom on
          the earth, and prepared his people by sending a messenger to
          prepare the way before him; that messenger has come, and the man
          that delivered it has been slain, namely, Joseph Smith, and by
          the instrumentality of that messenger, here sit the Apostles and
          Prophets, ordained to hold the keys of the kingdom of heaven.
          If the people had read the Scriptures they would have been
          looking for all this, if they had not listened to a set of blind
          guides, who have hired out for money to tell them the Scriptures
          mean something else.
          When you see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom
          of God is nigh at hand. Says one, "for my part I believe the
          kingdom of God was set up 1800 years ago, and is not going to be
          set up again; he is not going to have it set up twice, or I do
          not know what you are going to do with the Scriptures, you had
          better burn them up as a thing of no account, because John the
          Baptist, Jesus Christ, the Twelve Apostles, and the Seventies all
          agreed in their former testimonies that the kingdom of God was
          then nigh at hand, it must therefore have been immediately set
          up, or they were all false witnesses; and if it was immediately
          set up, as an event following their predictions, namely, on the
          day of pentecost, when the power of God was shed forth, and the
          Apostles that held the keys of it organized it upon the earth; if
          that event did really follow what John the Baptist, Jesus, and
          his Apostles had predicted, then of course it was set up in those
          We say there will be another time when it will be at hand; how do
          we prove it. By the words of Jesus himself in our text, for the
          did not only state that the kingdom was then at hand when he
          first began to preach, but he also said it would be at hand when
          we should see these modern signs here referred to. What did he
          say should come? False Christs, and the Apostles were to be
          betrayed, and hated of all nations, and some would be put to
          death; He told them they should be brought before kings and
          rulers; that the Roman army should compass Jerusalem, and there
          should not be left one stone upon another of their temple, and
          the Jews should go captive among all nations; that they should
          remain there for a certain time, during which the Gentile power
          should rule; that after all this there should be signs in the
          sun, moon, and stars, and upon he earth distress of nations, and
          perplexity, men's hearts failing them for fear; when these thing
          come to pass, then know that the kingdom of God is at hand.
          What does this make out? That there were two distinct times, or
          ages, varying in circumstances, in which the kingdom of God would
          be introduced to the inhabitants of the earth; the one should
          immediately follow John the Baptist, and Jesus, and Peter, who
          held the keys of it, and the other should be looked for and
          ushered in, in connection with these modern signs; in short Jesus
          and Peter held the keys of the one, and his brother Joseph Smith,
          and his Apostles hold the keys of the other.
          Now I think you can understand both predictions; one by John the
          Baptist, and all the holy Prophets, and by Jesus and his
          Apostles, and the other was predicted by Jesus Christ and all the
          Holy Prophets since the world began, and both of them fulfilled
          right here before your eyes this day. The one in the events
          recorded in the New Testament, the other in the history of Joseph
          Smith, and what follows.
          I have already been lengthy; having got at the main review, I
          will close by reviewing one more sentence. "Watch ye therefore,
          and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all
          these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son
          of Man."
          Now I know the habit of praying always in Christendom, that is
          certain portions of them, they pay in their families and in
          secret, and have prayer meetings; they pray for this, that, and
          the other, and say the Lord's prayer and a great many prayers,
          but the question is do they pray always? He did not tell them to
          pray the Lord's prayer always, particularly, neither did he tell
          not to; but this one prayer he did tell them to pray always, and
          causes it to be written; do WE fulfil it, and do they; it is not
          to pray always nor to watch always, but it is to pray this
          particular prayer always--that we may be accounted worthy to
          escape all these things that shall come to pass and stand before
          the Son of Man.
          Whatever else they might pray in all the varying circumstances of
          their lives, all right, but this one thing they would be sure to
          need, to be accounted worthy to escape all those things Christ
          foretold, and stand before him.
          And why should they pray this always? Because it is not only the
          living generation that had to meet it, and had need to be
          prepared, but it was a chain of prophecy that would be gradually
          fulfilling from that time until he comes, and whether they passed
          through the vail or remained in the flesh, one thing was certain,
          they would all have to meet some part of it; if they lived in
          Jerusalem they would have some part of it to meet; or if they
          were scattered among all nations they would have some part of it
          to met; and if they live until there should be signs in the sun,
          moon, and stars, and upon the earth distress of nations, they
          would have some part of it to meet; therefore whether they lived
          in modern or in former times, behind the vail or on this side of
          it; it was necessary to pray always to be accounted worthy to
          escape all these things and stand before the Son of Man.
          This would have cautioned the drunkard a little, and the miser a
          little, the man who is engaged head, heart, and hand to
          accumulate all the riches of the world and heap them up to
          himself, and not use them to build up the kingdom of God; it
          would have told him not to have his heart overcharged with the
          cares of this earth, or with surfeiting and drunkenness, if these
          words do not say so exactly, another writer does, who writes on
          the same subject.
          Take care how you get drunk how you are a glutton, how you are
          wholly swallowed up in the cares of this world, in accumulating
          riches, and take care to pray that you may escape all these
          things, and stand before the Son of Man.
          It would not do for me to talk always, but I want to tell you how
          to prepare; and I trust my bother Orson, or some one who will
          follow me in the course of the day, will enter upon that subject
          more fully, and illustrate the Gospel; the remission of sins; the
          gift of the Holy Ghost, and the ordinances pertaining thereto, as
          well as a good, moral, prayerful life, all of which would open up
          an extensive field for reflection, had we time to enter upon it.
          If we had time, and it was expedient we could show you that in
          order to restore the kingdom of God, and prepare the way for the
          coming of the Son of Man, the Gospel would have to be restored in
          its fulness, baptism, and repentance for the remission of sins
          preached, and a messenger like John the Baptist sent of old to
          prepare the way; but we will leave the subject unfinished.
          I expect to go where Jesus did and tell the spirits in prison the
          good news that their redemption draweth nigh, and the good news
          of the Gospel, my mouth never can be shut on that subject, in
          heaven, earth, or hell, if I am at liberty to tell it, and the
          Holy Spirit given to me to direct.
          I leave the subject praying God to bless you all, and all those
          that watch and pray always to be accounted worthy to escape all
          these things that are coming to pass, and stand before the Son of
          Man. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Amasa
          M. Lyman, December 2, 1855
                          Amasa M. Lyman, December 2, 1855
           A Discourse, by Elder Amasa Lyman, Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, December 2, 1855.
          My brethren and sisters--By the changes which mark the history of
          our journey through life, I again have the privilege of meeting
          with you. With many of you, no doubt, I have had the same
          privilege before, and, for aught I know, this may be the first
          time I have met with others who are present to-day; whether I
          have met with you before or not, it is a source of gratification
          to me that we are here.
          I am not here because I have fulfilled my mission, or because I
          have laid down the labor of my mission as having completed it;
          but I am simply here this afternoon because I have a mission, one
          that has engaged my time, filled up my time, and engaged all my
          powers; it is only in the discharge of the duties of that mission
          that I am here.
          Though some may have thought that because I have been laboring in
          California for a few years, the labors of my mission are confined
          to California, but I do not so understand it; these are not the
          feelings that I cherish within me in relation to it. I never have
          felt, because I was appointed to labor for a time for the
          accomplishment of certain purposes in the State of California,
          that I was released from the obligations that rested upon me as a
          minister of righteousness every day, in every place, and under
          all circumstances.
          I received a mission over twenty years ago to preach the Gospel,
          and have been engaged in it ever since; it has filled up the
          hours, days, weeks, months, and years of my life since I received
          it. It has enlisted my whole affections for that length of time,
          and I have only just commenced--I say I have just commenced
          because I have not completed it, and the extent of time that may
          be occupied in its completion I do not comprehend.
          The only fact I fully comprehend in relation to it is that I have
          began it--I have received it--entered upon the duties of it--and
          in the prosecution of it so far, I have done all I have done; I
          have travelled where I have travelled; I have labored as I have
          labored. It is in the discharge of the duties of this mission I
          leave Salt Lake, and in the discharge of the duties of it that I
          return. It is in the discharge of these duties that I do all that
          I do, so far as I am able to act, as I would wish to act, and as
          I design to act.
          I may this evening address people with whom I have held
          conversation in relation to principles of the Gospel long years
          ago; and others, as I have remarked, perhaps see me for the first
          time, yet to both of these classes of persons I have but one
          thing to say, namely, that it is still my business to preach the
          Gospel. I have nothing else to preach. I know nothing else to
          preach. It is the subject that has engaged my attention, and
          still does engage it.
          With the years of experience that have added the contributions to
          the store of knowledge, I have been able to gain in the short
          time I have lived in the world, the subject seems to increase in
          its dimensions and in its extent. That which I thought I knew
          when I was but a boy--that I thought I understood--that I
          supposed in the vanity and ignorance of childhood I
          comprehended--I find in the mature years of manhood that I knew
          nothing about it, so far as the comprehension of the great truths
          of the Gospel, in their extent, are concerned.
          I learned that there was a Gospel, and became satisfied of its
          truth; and I commenced to labor in the Gospel as did those who
          taught me its principles, and from whose lips I first heard the
          testimony thereof; the first man I ever heard preach it is here
          with me to-day--brother Orson Pratt.
          The Gospel is connected with every thing I can think about. It is
          expanded to such an extent that I cannot see beyond it; I cannot
          rise above it, nor descend beneath it. There are no depths it
          does not reach; no heights it does not surmount; no extent which
          is not filled by it. So let me talk to you what I will, that is
          true, and calculated to do good to mankind, it must of necessity
          form a part of the Gospel.
          I used to think twenty years ago that I had preached it over and
          over again; so I confess one thing to you, not as a sin--not as a
          wrong, that when I was a child I thought as a child, I believed
          the Gospel as a child, I speculated about it as a child, and I
          talked about it as a child would; but since I became a man I have
          learned different things; I have learned that there is a vast
          difference between receiving and indorsing a belief in the
          existence of a fact, and the full and perfect comprehension of
          This was the relation in which I stood to the Gospel in the days
          of my childhood, it is the relation in which I stand to it, in a
          great extent, to-day. It is no more a fact to-day than it was a
          score of years ago--that I comprehend the Gospel only in part.
          That I comprehend it fully now, I would not be so understood. I
          comprehend something of it; all the truth that I am able to
          comprehend is so much of it.
          Now, is this the case with anybody besides myself? I have reason
          to think that if I have the Gospel to learn, others have it to
          learn, and that if a comprehension of the truth is requisite to
          my salvation it is to theirs. Then the important thing in
          relation to the Gospel is, that we should receive it in its true
          spirit, that we should duly appreciate the object of its
          institution, the reasons why it is revealed to us, and the
          necessity that called for its revelation. This will enlighten us
          as to the principle upon which we will be really saved, when we
          are saved.
          If, after all, we do not comprehend the Gospel in its fulness,
          and in its widest extent, we may perhaps fall as far short of
          what may be called--according to our way of understanding--a
          perfect salvation, as we may lack understanding to comprehend the
          Gospel in its fulness.
          The Gospel as I receive it, believe it, learned to be true, to be
          a system of truth, that circumscribes all things; that embraces
          all the good that exists, is a something that is designed to
          produce for the children of men such things as are requisite to
          their happiness; to their deliverance from the bondage of sin;
          from the bondage of error, ignorance, and darkness; or from
          ignorance, by whatever name it may be called, or whatever may be
          the particular agency by which it may exert its influence over
          the freedom of the soul.
          This review of the matter has led me to conclude that it is not
          the heathen nations alone--as we denominate them in
          contradistinction to the christian world--that are groveling in
          darkness, that are worshiping they know not what, and that are
          seeing they know not what, but that it is actually the case with
          thousands who have subscribed to the doctrine God has revealed in
          the last days, even the Gospel as a system of truth and
          salvation. Yet in looking forward to that emancipation from
          darkness, from error, and from all the concomitant train of
          consequences resulting from an ignorance of truth, they have
          failed to recognize, in examining the subject, that the
          comprehension of truth was actually necessary to constitute the
          salvation they sought for.
          We have looked for heaven, or happiness, in a deliverance from
          every thing that is in reality a cause of annoyance to us; of
          sorrow, misery, and wretchedness. From this we expect to be
          saved, from it we expect the Gospel will redeem us.
          Well now, how do we expect to arrive at so desirable a
          consummation of our wishes? How do we expect to gain the point
          where we shall realize a full and perfect deliverance from the
          evils that afflict us--with which we are surrounded in life--and
          from which we expect to be saved, when the Gospel has wrought out
          for us all we anticipate, shall have brought to us the
          realization of our highest hopes, and loftiest expectations? What
          then shall have been done with us? Where shall we be? What kind
          of men and women will we be? What country or locality of the
          great universe shall we occupy? Where can the bread of life be
          found, and the water of the fountain of life, from which we may
          fain quench our thirst?
          One might calculate that all the good we expect to realize when
          we are saved, will be obtained, by doing, in all things, as we
          are told to do, by fulfilling every requisition that is imposed
          upon us, and thereby securing the fullness of this salvation.
          What does this obedience lead people to? It leads them to go
          where they are required to go, and to stay where they may be
          required to stay; in fine, it leads them to perform every labor
          that is required at their hands in the building up of the kingdom
          of God, and the establishing of Zion, or the cause of truth on
          the earth. In the pursuance of this, what do we find? We find men
          crossing the desert, and the ocean, of their own free will;
          passing through all the contingencies of a journey of that kind;
          passing through privations, hardships, dangers, and evils that
          may hang around their path, because they have been commanded to
          do so. We see some fall of who have spent a score of years in
          traveling, preaching, laboring, toiling, and striving to gain
          salvation by being obedient to the requisitions that were laid
          upon them; they have gone, when, and where they were sent, and
          have come back when called for; they have made it their business
          to respond to the calls that were made, regardless of what they
          might be.
          After a while we find those men who have traveled long and far,
          and suffered much; and what do they tell us? "Why, we have tried
          Mormonism for twenty years," and now what conclusion do they come
          to? To the conclusion, that is sometimes vulgarly expressed in
          this way--"We have not found Mormonism what it is cracked up to
          be--it has been misrepresented to us." This is simply because
          they have not realized all their expectations, and hopes, and
          have not been able to grasp the reward they were seeking after,
          and which they regarded as constituting the elements of
          happiness. So now, after twenty year's hard service, they are
          ready, as we say, to apostatize and go somewhere else to seek
          happiness, and leave "Mormonism" to go as it may go, to sink or
          If toiling, and laboring, and suffering privations and hardships
          were sufficient to save men, and place within their possession
          the constituent principles of happiness to redeem them from evil,
          such men would have been redeemed very likely; such men would
          have been pure. But what does it prove? It simply proves, that if
          there is anything in a man's experience, in his toiling and
          labor, it is simply the facts that we see, the outward result
          that may be calculated, that flows from his labors, such as the
          building of houses, and cities.
          He may suffer toil in various ways: for instance, as in preaching
          the Gospel and trying with all his might to get the people to
          believe that which they ought to believe; to get them to serve
          God, and keep His commandments. If there is anything but this
          results from his labor and toil in the Gospel I am not aware of
          it. By and by he lays his body down in the dust, his work is not
          completed, and he is unhappy and wretched.
          Why is it? Is it because the Gospel is untrue; because He is not
          faithful that has promised? No. But it is simply because he has
          been looking where it is not, for the constituent principles of
          happiness where they do not exist; and while he has been laboring
          and toiling he has failed to gather to himself a store of
          happiness as the reward of his toil. He supposed if he built this
          house, performed this mission, or discharged that duty, that this
          would give him salvation. Says one, "Is it not this which gives
          men salvation?" What does the Savior say? He once on a time
          defined what eternal life is; and that is what we all seek; that
          is the principle without which we as Latter-day Saints calculate
          that men cannot be happy, and be saved in the kingdom of God,
          which is to know the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom He has
          Then traveling by sea and land, living in luxury or poverty,
          suffering hardships and toil does not constitute eternal life;
          because there are countless millions of earth's sons that are
          seen to-day, suffering and toiling, and wasting themselves away,
          wearing themselves out, so far as their bodies are concerned,
          until they lay down in their mother earth, being as poor at the
          end of their toil as at the beginning of it, and as a general
          thing, more wretched.
          Then there is something else that should be connected with all
          this labor; there is some other principle, something that should
          be developed in the history of every individual, besides the
          making of a house, the exploring of a new country, the preaching
          the word of God to others, that word which would save them, and
          direct them to the fountain of life and salvation. And what is
          that something? It is the important thing which we all want;
          whether it is large or small, little or much; whatever may be its
          name is a matter of no importance to us, only, so we possess it.
          There should be developed that which will give life and assurance
          in the bosom of man, the thing that can constitute him happy;
          that can be means of bliss to him. This cannot be found, as I
          have said, in building houses; there are millions of men that
          build houses and never know the truth, they never comprehend it;
          they began poor, and die poor, so far as this principle is
          So it was with the Pharisees, after all the pains Jesus Christ
          had taken to instruct and teach them, and render his teachings so
          perfectly simple, that a person with but a child's capacity could
          have understood them; when he was demanded of them when the
          kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, "The
          kingdom of God cometh not with observation. Neither shall they
          say, Lo here! or, Lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is
          within you."
          We as Latter-day Saints have heard a great deal said to entertain
          us, and a great many speculations have been formed in our minds
          with regard to the kingdom of God, and we may have pursued our
          various ways to impart our ideas to satisfy those to whom we may
          have addressed our conversation, in the course of our lives, and
          in the course of our labors, as to what the kingdom of God is, so
          as to get our hearers to understand it.
          Now we, as Latter-day Saints, who are in possession of that
          principle of salvation, need not say we know of a principle that
          will produce salvation, for whenever the principle is developed
          in man, he is already saved; he has no need to go around the bush
          to find something else--he has not to take another step to get
          something else in his possession before he is saved, but when the
          principle is in his possession he is saved, and he is saved to
          the extent to which the principle is developed in him.
          Jesus Christ understood this when he took the mild way of
          admonishing certain of his disciples, and rebuking them perhaps
          for their dullness of apprehension, telling them they were slow
          of heart to believe things that had been spoken by the Prophets.
          How often have we been told that it was requisite for us to live
          that the Spirit of God would come and dwell with us, live in us
          constantly, until it should be a living fountain of life, and
          light, and glory in our souls, until it should lead us into all
          What did we suppose, when we heard this, was to happen with us?
          What did we suppose we were to do? What kind of feelings were we
          to cultivate, if any at all, that we may have the Holy Spirit?
          Says one, "that is one thing, and perhaps the thing you are
          talking about is something else." What is the Holy Spirit? What
          will it do for you and me? What has it ever done for any man, or
          for any people who have been so happy as to enjoy the blessings
          of its presence with them, as to partake of its fruits, to live
          and enjoy the life which it imparts? What has it done for us?
          I would like to ask every intelligent man this question, as
          Latter-day Saints, if they suppose it ever revealed anything more
          than the truth to any soul? Did it ever do anything beyond simply
          reflecting light around individuals, in which they were enabled
          to discover just the simple naked truth, which enabled them to
          comprehend it as well as be sensible to its existence. What did
          it ever do, whether you apply its power to revelation, to the
          principle of light that it would impart; or to the fact that
          there is a God who lives, rules, and reigns in the heavens above,
          and in the earth beneath; or whether you apply it to something
          that might be called a smaller matter--a matter of less
          magnitude; did it ever do anything but simply teach mankind the
          Then the truth is the highest point that can be gained, it is the
          richest gem that can be possessed; you cannot go beyond it, nor
          stop short of it without partaking of falsehood, and error. There
          is no alternative left. The principle that governs the dwelling
          of Jehovah is truth, simple truth, and that is all there is upon
          which a permanent foundation for happiness can be laid.
          If we would learn the God of truth that imparts life, and freedom
          from darkness and error to us; it is simply that truth that
          enables us to comprehend the facts in relation to Him. If we
          learn ourselves it is the same; it would be the revelation of
          some principle applied to ourselves, to our own history, to the
          reason why we are here, and the same that brought us here. Then
          this is what the Holy Spirit will do.
          We have been taught that we should so live that it should be with
          us continually. How is it that we are to live that it may dwell
          with us? Have we to live so as to possess this truth, this
          counsellor, this adviser, this minister that will admonish us of
          God, and for our good, and tell us the truth always?
          Have we got to depend upon the contingency of our being able, for
          instance, to go to meeting every Sabbath day to hear somebody
          inspired of God tell the truth that we may see it, and hear it,
          mark it, and define the exact ground we should occupy, the path
          in which we should walk, and the duties that should fill up the
          measure of days through the week.
          If this was the way that we were to be saved, by living for the
          truth, and getting it in our possession, and this was to be the
          only principle upon which we were to possess ourselves of its
          advantages, if anything should happen that we could not go to
          church, we should be as hard off as a mariner in a fog without a
          compass or chart. We should, in every sense of the word, be lost,
          and be entirely unable to find ourselves.
          Was this what was contemplated in the Gospel? Was it contemplated
          to make the condition and circumstances of those individuals that
          should embrace the Gospel better? I do not think that it was, I
          do not believe it was.
          The Savior intimated that whoever should do the will of his
          Father, should fulfil his requirements, what should be their
          condition; he intimated that this principle should be in them
          like a well of water springing up to everlasting life. To the
          woman at the well of Samaria he said, "Whosoever drinketh of the
          water that I shall give him shall never thirst."
          One of the ancient Apostles in admonishing his brethren who had
          been taught, probably as much as the Latter-day Saints have, and
          probably might have embraced the Gospel with similar views; says
          he, "We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do
          well that ye take heed as unto alight that shineth in a dark
          place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your
          When a man is in darkness it is necessary he should have a
          candle, or some borrowed means of light to dissipate the darkness
          around him. How long? Until the day dawns, and the day star
          arises. Where? In this man's heart--in your neighbor's heart? No.
          But give heed unto the sure word of prophecy until the day dawns,
          and the day star arises in your heart.
          When the day dawns, we dispense with the light of the candle;
          when the day star arises in the heart, to use the language of the
          Apostle, it reflects its light there. Does it wear away? No, it
          is there continually. The Apostle chose that as a figure, that
          was as near something immutable and without change, probably, as
          anything that could occur to his mind, in selecting the dawn of
          day and the rising of the day star.
          The Apostle Peter spoke these words, a man inspired of God, who
          spoke thus to instruct the uninstructed, that they might be
          brought to the comprehension of some truths, be led to drink at
          some fountain of life; this was the object for which they were to
          attend to this instruction. Then you can discover, very readily,
          that it is the development in the soul of every individual, of
          this principle of light, or life, I care not which you call it;
          it is this comprehension of truth the Apostle refers to.
          That the great object of the Gospel, and the object of its being
          preached was the development of its light in the soul of those
          individuals that are to become heirs of salvation, the sons and
          daughters of God, who are to be clothed upon with the principles
          of truth with which God is clothed, that in the comprehension of
          truth, they may receive capacity to will and do, and accomplish
          those things which are requisite to their happiness and
          And so long as this objection fails to be accomplished--so long
          the preaching of the Gospel has failed to accomplish its object,
          as far as those individuals are concerned, and the object for
          which that labor was performed. Whether the lack is in the man
          who preaches, or in the people to whom he preaches, it is all the
          This is a point that Latter-day Saints should duly appreciate and
          consider; because if we do not, the consequences are, discontent
          in the mind, and dissatisfaction; we shall quarrel with
          circumstances that are around us, we shall find fault, simply
          because we are not contented; and because the estimates we place
          upon truth, and the blessings conferred upon us, lead us to
          consider that they are not worth the labor we are required to
          bestow, the money or means we are required to give. The
          consequence is, we consider it a bad bargain, and we want to rue;
          and then as Latter-day Saints we apostatize--we quit it--we back
          out, saying, "we have not found Mormonism what it was cracked up
          to be."
          How have such people received it? What views have they
          entertained of it? There are those things which will actually
          tell the truth on a man, when his lips fail to speak it; his
          actions will tell it. What did they consider it worth? As much of
          their tithing as they could not avoid paying.
          Some may think it is worth a tithing but not any more. Another
          man considers it worth everything; and more than everything of
          which he can entertain a perception. He would not refuse to pour
          out the last dollar; he will hunt the last corner of his pocket
          to get out the last farthing to give to it. And when it comes to
          his labor he would not stop to labor one day in ten, but ten
          whole days, and only wish there were more days to labor to
          accomplish more; because in so doing he is serving himself and
          enlarging his own interest, when he is seeking the interest of
          Why so? Because he estimates it to be that is universal in its
          extent, and intimately associated with every principle of the
          Gospel, in which the narrow conceptions of men are drowned, they
          are lost, submerged like a mote cast into the ocean.
          On taking this view, he does not stop at anything he can do. Does
          he stand back from pouring out his life's blood? No, but he pours
          it out as freely as water that glides down from the summit of the
          snow-clad hills to the valleys below.
          In what consists the difference between these two classes of men?
          It is in the estimate they place upon the value of "Mormonism."
          One class considers it worth what they gave for it, and the other
          considers it worth more than they can possible give.
          Then it is as men receive the Gospel, and endorse the truth; if
          they consider it excellent above everything else, so that they
          will manifest their love for it, and their zeal in promoting its
          interests, and the accomplishment of its object.
          You can readily see, then, how the kingdom of God must be built
          up in the soul of every individual; Zion must be developed there.
          What is Zion? It is the pure in heart, so says the revelation. Do
          you suppose you are going to build up the kingdom of God until
          the perfection of purity and truth is developed in the hearts of
          the people of that kingdom? No. You may gather them together by
          thousands, and tens of thousands, until the concourse swell the
          congregation in Zion to millions, and what will it amount to
          until this principle is developed in them?
          There will be a corresponding stream of apostacy flowing out, at
          the same time, at the back door. What is the reason? Simply
          because this principle is wanted, this important part of the
          Gospel is omitted, if it has ever been thought of; its
          harmonizing influences are not felt through the sphere of man's
          being; his interests are at war with the interests of Zion; he
          runs after some fanciful notion that is at war with the kingdom
          of God. He cares not for it, he would exchange it for a piece of
          bread and cheese, for a farm, or for the glittering treasure of
          the world.
          Why, because the principle is not in the heart, that causes him
          to estimate the real value of the gem which he rejects; he
          considers it worth but a trifle, consequently he will barter away
          his chance for it, for a trifle. That is the way men act for
          "Mormonism" We are going to build up the kingdom of God, and
          compass sea and land to tell the erring sons of earth the Gospel,
          and testify that the Lord has set His hand again to build up the
          kingdom, and then get down by the fireside and say, "Mormonism
          has been preached so many years, and perhaps, in five years the
          Son of Man must come;" and in their feelings they say, "It cannot
          be put off; from what brother Joseph said, and from what brother
          Brigham has said, or somebody else, we calculate the Son of Man
          will be here in a few years at the farthest. And will he not have
          nice times when he comes, visiting among this people?"
          When will he come? When will be the day of righteousness that we
          talk about, when peace and truth, and the kingdom of God shall
          cover the earth as the waters do the deep? It will be when the
          principle of truth and light and life are developed in the hearts
          of the people that dwell on the face of the earth, and never
          until then.
          Knowledge is just as near the earth, so far as that is concerned,
          now as it will be then; but where is it? There is such a thing as
          truth, as a comprehension of it, but that does not prove that it
          exists within you or me; or that either of us have the advantage,
          or can secure to ourselves the advantage of having it in
          possession; although a seraph might stand by our side, whose
          being has been made radiant by the light of truth, we still will
          be in some ignorance, corresponding to the amount of knowledge we
          The light must be in the soul before its benefit can be realized.
          We have heard our teacher tell us that two and two make four; if
          we had never heard anything else, if this was all that had been
          connected with it, would we ever have comprehended the principle?
          No. The comprehension of it must exist in a man's mind. It must
          be in the centre of his being, a fountain of light, and
          consequently of life and glory, from which fountain should
          proceed life and truth until it is diffused throughout his whole
          being, until all his affections are sanctified, and his judgment
          Then he would have no need to pile up and read the musty records
          of past ages, because the principles of light, and life, and
          truth are planted in him; and when he began to partake of their
          fruits, to drink of this fountain, would he thirst again? No.
          When a man learns the truth, he does not feel any more anxiety
          about it, he does not become hungry for the comprehension of that
          truth any more. So Jesus said, "They that drink of the water I
          will give them shall not thirst again."
          A man that receives the knowledge of the truth does not thirst
          for the same knowledge again. This is the principle that saves
          men. And if men, while they build houses and inhabit them; while
          they make cities, and preach the Gospel, and gather the Saints
          together; if they were enabled to succeed in developing this
          principle in themselves, and then to lead people to adopt the
          same course that should result in like development, then both the
          preacher, and the people influenced, by his preaching, would be
          saved, and they would be brought together, and associate
          together, and the kingdom of God would be built up in the beauty
          of holiness, and in spirit and truth; and it never can be until
          The knowledge of God will never cover the earth until it is first
          in the hearts of the people. The principle must be developed
          there; then our building of houses, our suffering and toil will
          all find their reward. In what? In securing to us those blessings
          that cannot be destroyed; in laying up that treasure where moth
          and rust do not corrupt, no thieves break through and steal.
          Where is it? Some people talk as though they would have to go to
          heaven, to some distant locality to treasure up this
          indescribable something called wealth where the doors and gates
          are strong so as to defy the art of the robber and thief. The
          most secure thing I can think of and the nearest to an
          imperishable reality is the knowledge of the truth safely
          treasured in the memory of an intelligent human being. When
          treasured there, who can steal it or get it away? They may mar
          the body, and destroy it, or in other words, cause it to cease to
          live, but they cannot take away from that which constitutes the
          man; the treasure he holds, they cannot reach it.
          If I was going to lay up an imperishable treasure, I would seek
          for the knowledge of the truth, and get as much as I could of it,
          and there would be my treasure, and my heart, and my soul
          affections. If it was in a cold and uninhabitable region, among
          snow-clad hills, where corn is hard to make, and wheat still
          harder, and wood a great way off, my affections would be there
          because my wealth was there, and the fountain from which this
          springs would be there. Then I would not hanker after another
          country, only in simple obedience to the requisition laid upon
          me--to serve the interests of the cause of the truth of God.
          This would fix in the soul a principle of contentment that would
          wear out hardship and toil, and outlive them, and shed the light
          of peace and harmony throughout the whole field of a man's being
          and operations in life. He would be contented all the time.
          Would such a man ever apostatize? No. Was a contented man ever
          known to apostatize? No. I never saw an apostate yet, but could
          tell me of some dissatisfied desire that caused him to
          Then if you feel discontented you may know one thing, that you
          are not as you should be, that you have not within you the
          principle that should reign there, to influence, govern, and
          control you; that should dictate your course, and give shape to
          your actions.
          I want you to remember this, and become philosophers, and examine
          yourselves, establish an inquisition at home, within the circle
          you should control, over that little empire over which each of
          you should rule, and learn whether the love of truth is reigning
          there, or gathering strength each day.
          And if you do not, on examination, find your love of truth a
          little better to-day, and that you would do a little more for it
          to-day than twenty-five years ago, you had better get up and look
          around you, for you are certainly going down hill, and you will
          soon be like the man that found "Mormonism" to be not what it was
          cracked up to be; you will be going south to a warmer country, or
          to some other place.
          I want you to become philosophers, as far as examining yourselves
          is concerned, and in seeing how that little kingdom is getting
          on, that should be built up within you. "O," says one, "that is
          too spiritual." I know it is very spiritual. It is said, "The
          letter killeth, but the Spirit giveth life."
          But I never thought the kingdom could be built up in a man's
          heart. I wish you as Latter-day Saints, when you go home, would
          sit down and study rationally, and see what principle there is
          that will be developed in building up the kingdom of God,
          according to the light of inspiration; you can read in the good
          book, and according to all that has ever shone around you, or in
          your own heart; and if you can find a principle in building up
          that kingdom, you will find one that, in the first place, is to
          be developed in the circle of every human being that hopes to be
          associated in building it up.
          There must be harmony in the kingdom of God in order to its
          peace, union, and strength. There must be a perfect subordination
          to those fixed and unchanging principles that characterize the
          operations of God. If this is not developed in you, what will you
          do, when associated with faithful brethren and sisters, in
          building up the kingdom of God?
          You will feel yourselves literally crushed under the pressure of
          responsibility which will rest upon you; you will be broken up,
          as it were, and will apostatize, and will be cast out as salt
          that has lost its savor, and is good for nothing but to be
          trodden underfoot. 
          If we have counted on you as a Saint, as substantial material,
          when we come to look for you, we do not find you, but we find the
          place you filled unoccupied, waiting to be filled with some
          better material, when it is on hand, how long will it take us to
          build up Zion, to emigrate people from the far off corners of the
          earth, and they apostatize and run away when they get here? What
          a Zion we should have!
          What attraction would it create to the nations? How brilliant its
          light? The Zion and kingdom of God never was so built up; it is
          not so being built up now. What is it that marks the advance of
          the cause of truth on earth--tells it definitely and truly? If
          you want to find this out, read the people of the Saints of the
          Most High, and see if they love the truth, and give it their
          supreme regard, to the exclusion of everything else.
          You may take this man or woman, and give them the appropriate
          place in the organization of the Church, and they are there every
          time you call for them, they will always answer. When you put
          your hand where you expect they are, you will not find a vacancy
          that is not filled. If you require a service done, you will
          always find the individual there to perform it, no odds whether
          it is duty at home or abroad, pleasant or grievous.
          Then how is the cause of God advanced? Just as fast as those
          principles are being developed in the people. That tells her
          strength, power, and durability. If it is not the love of the
          truth that binds the people of God together, that holds them
          firmly round the great centre from which they cannot be induced
          to take their departure, and for which there is no feeling of the
          soul but would exert its influence to the fullest extent to bind
          them to it, then what is it? Who is it? It is not Brigham Young
          and his associates.
          It is no man or set of men that binds the Saints to the truth,
          that holds them together, and that maintains the rule and
          supremacy of the authority of God on the earth, but it is the
          principle of truth and the love of it developed in the hearts of
          the people, and the influence it exerts over them. Do the people
          appreciate it? I do not think they do fully, or to a very great
          Why do I think this? Because, forsooth, some who feel a great
          deal of human solicitude for the cause of God, would be very
          sorrowful because somebody is going to leave. "O, dear, I really
          do feel the cause of God will apostatize, if we lose our
          President for a little time, for a few months or a year, what
          will become of us?"
          They suppose, with all the strength of the authorities of this
          kingdom, aided by the strength of God, they have as much as they
          can do to hold the people together. Such people make no
          calculation on the influence and strength of truth, but on the
          influence of frail man, or on the influence of a set of mortals
          like themselves, who enjoy more of the light of inspiration than
          Does the Lord tell us this? We know He has said it is His
          business to provide for His Saints. What does He require of you
          and me? Simply, enough to save ourselves. Says one, "I supposed I
          had to save nearly half the world to become great in the kingdom
          of God."
          If you are able to save yourselves, you will do first rate,
          because you will get all the reward you need--all that will make
          you happy, and an abundant entrance will be administered unto you
          into the everlasting kingdom of God, and to the enjoyment of
          every thing that is requisite to your happiness.
          They would not ask you in that state whether you have saved one,
          two, a hundred, or a hundred thousand souls besides yourself.
          "What, and I sent you to preach for them?" Why, to save yourself.
          And the reason why a great many of our Traveling Elders
          apostatize, and now mingle with that class of sinners, is simply
          because they fail to apply the principles to themselves which
          they recommend to others.
          "What do you preach for?" To save yourselves. If I get myself
          saved I am not concerned about you. I am preaching these
          principles to you to-day, to discharge a duty that I owe to you,
          that I may be saved. It is the same when I am somewhere else.
          "But is buying a rancho embraced in your salvation. What did you
          buy that land for, did you do it to preach the Gospel? Do you go
          down to San Bernardino to preach the Gospel? Did President Young
          tell you to come here and preach?" No, he said he wanted to see
          me; so I came and looked at him, and he saw me; and then the
          brethren wanted me to preach, and I have preached some ideas that
          may be new, and if I should find out something else I did not
          before comprehend, I shall preach it. And I would preach just as
          quick any where else as here, because the Saints are all alike to
          me; their progression is one, their hopes and expectations are
          one, or should be; and their heaven and reward will be one when
          they obtain them; and it will all be in the same country. Will it
          be in San Bernardino? No. In Salt Lake Valley? No. Will it be in
          any one of the settlements of the Saints to the exclusion of the
          rest? No. Where will it be? In here. In your own hearts. When you
          get your heaven built up there so that it becomes a living
          organized creation, with all its parts and properties properly
          associated and developed, as the parts are in the physical being
          of man, you would not go to tom fooling over the earth to find a
          heaven, because you carry it with you continually.
          If you go on a journey you take your heaven with you, or if you
          stay at home, it is there; if you go to meeting, you take it with
          you; and when you die and your spirit mingles with the spirits of
          just men made perfect, you take your heaven there. Says one, "how
          is the kingdom of God to be built up if that constitutes the
          great and important point?" Why, bring in the Saints from the
          four corners of the earth, by tens of millions, and associate
          them together, and what will they do? They will do what they are
          required to do. They will live in harmony one with another
          collectively, and with themselves individually, and with their
          God; consequently, the will of God will be done on earth, as in
          heaven. The principles of truth will be exemplified in the
          conduct of men on earth as it is with the spirits of the just in
          heaven, because men will know and appreciate the truth, and their
          conduct will be shaped according to it.
          If this is not good Gospel, get something that is better. This
          Gospel fills up this little creation we live in. Where do we
          live? In the midst of space. Why? because it is all around us.
          How far does it extend? To infinitude. The creation of man cannot
          reach it, his thoughts tire in the contemplation of it.
          This little portion of the Gospel we commenced to tell the people
          years ago, this meagre supply of truth, which fills up the narrow
          comprehension of us mortals, is a part of that great whole which
          occupies this space, and that constitutes all the glory,
          happiness, and bliss that is within that illimitable field.
          You cannot name another heaven, you cannot find the material to
          make it of, you have no foundation upon which to build it. You
          cannot by your own reaching get away any portion of this Gospel,
          for it takes up all the material around us; you must go beyond
          this space where we occupy, so to operate. Do you esteem
          "Mormonism" as being worth all the wealth that is embraced in
          this vast infinitude of extent? Then what do you wish to exchange
          it for? Don't go and fool it away for a little tea and coffee,
          for a little sugar, peaches, and grapes, or for a warmer climate;
          in so doing you would show yourselves but poor financiers; I
          would not wish you to operate for me; and the master will think
          as I do; if you go and fool away the treasure committed to your
          keeping, will he ever give you another penny to start upon again?
          I do not know whether he will or not. He will probably not do it
          until you have been poor, and ragged, and destitute, and a beggar
          for a long time.
          Be faithful now, and learn this one thing--that we have not
          learned the Gospel, but learned of it, and are still learning of
          it, as much truth as we can gain. How fast do we learn? Just as
          fast as the condition of feeling we cultivate will allow us; just
          as much as the spirit of it is with us; just so much we learn.
          Do you want to secure blessings? Says one, "I want to do a great
          deal for my dead friends, and to this end I want to get into the
          temple of the Lord." The Gospel has to do with this; why? Because
          it is inside the elements of the Gospel--it comes within the
          scope of its principles, and extent, and application to man's
          existence and happiness.
          Then do not be in a hurry about getting into the temple before
          you are prepared to go there. Some act as though they had no
          other idea, but that they will be able to get in by stealth; they
          expect to storm heaven, and force blessings from the Almighty
          irrespective of their claim. This is not the spirit of the
          Gospel, it is not thus in the temple of God.
          I shall secure to myself, how much? that that my conduct has
          rendered me worthy of. "But suppose brothers Brigham, Heber, and
          Jedediah pronounce blessings upon me, shall I not get them?" If
          you are worthy of them you will. You are not to speculate in
          prospective on the blessings you expect to get; if you live here
          so as to be worthy of them, what need you fear about anything.
          It is impossible in the nature of truth, for you to lose anything
          of which you are worthy; God cannot lie; He cannot forsake His
          faithful children, and disannul the promise He has made to them.
          Do you want to hasten the building of the temple, or any other
          work, which will be to the interest of Zion on earth? Then
          commence at home; take a home mission, and attend strictly to the
          "Mormon" creed, which you know is, "Mind your own business."
          Suppose you all individually take a home mission, to examine
          yourselves, and institute that inquisition I have alluded to,
          into your own conduct and condition, day by day, week by week,
          month by month, and year by year. Is it not of importance that it
          should be set up?
          To keep this perishable body from starving, you would work day
          and night; is not the soul of man, that can never die, that must
          be happy or miserable for eternity, worth your notice? Go to work
          and examine yourselves for a short time each day, and see how you
          are getting on.
          You need not take it for granted that because you live in Great
          Salt Lake City, you will be saved; but if there are not thousands
          damned who live in this place, I shall be mistaken, and things
          will turn out better than I expect. "If that is the case in Salt
          Lake City, how are they doing in San Bernardino?" They are doing
          as you are here.
          "Why, I did not suppose you had good people enough there to do as
          we are doing here." What do you suppose is the difference between
          good men here and in San Bernardino? I feel that I am about the
          same sort of a man there as here, I do not feel any better here
          to-day than I should if I were there. I do not feel the weight of
          my responsibility any different, not a particle.
          The good men down there, that love the truth, are working
          righteousness. Is there any more done here? If any man is doing
          anything but serving God--that loves the truth--I would like to
          know his name.
          "But have you not many bad people there?" Yes, a great many, I
          wish we had fewer. You may suppose we have them there, because
          they left here. However, we try to do as well as we can, and, if
          on the tide of human events, too great a preponderancy of
          wickedness does not float in our midst, the truth will triumph;
          and if it does not, I do not care, as concerns myself, so I am
          found a righteous man, acting according to the dictations of
          truth, that will save me.
          That is the way we are getting along in San Bernardino. And here
          I may also observe, it is the way they are getting on in all the
          settlements of the Saints, and every where else.
          We have not as many Saints down there as you have, but we have as
          many of one sort; and I feel as though I am interested down there
          as I am here, only not in the way I am here.
          Having made these few scattering remarks, just as they came into
          my mind, without study or arrangement, I will forbear. If I have
          said anything wrong, I have no objections that you forget it; I
          hope you may; and what I have said that is right, I would like
          you to remember, because I am interested in having you remember
          it; and in having this people with the Saints everywhere, become
          a pure, a great and good people, because I am interested in the
          building up of the kingdom of God, and wherever that people and
          the interest of the kingdom is represented, there is my interest.
          And I hope when we have wound up the little routine of duties
          assigned us here, we shall have secured to ourselves that wealth
          that shall be to us worth all sublunary considerations, and
          remain when they have passed away. That we may all obtain this,
          is my prayer, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, May 6, 1855
                             Brigham Young, May 6, 1855
          A Discourse, by President B. Young, Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                         Great Salt Lake City, May 6, 1855.
          It is hardly time to close the meeting, and I take the liberty of
          making a few remarks. I expect, in a day or two, to leave home
          for a few weeks, to visit the natives in the south, and shall
          call on the brethren in that region. I now wish to ask a few
          favors for myself, for those who may accompany me, and for all
          who remain.
          If you should hear any reports about me during our absence,
          always have enough of the spirit of truth to know whether they
          are false or true; always so enjoy the Spirit of the Lord, that
          you can discern between truth and error, and know the spirit of
          evil from the spirit of righteousness. If you should hear that I
          have apostatized from the Gospel and gone to California to get
          gold, you need not believe that report; but if you hear that I am
          opposed to a spirit which prevails among a good many, who profess
          to be Saints, you may believe it; but if you hear that the
          Indians have killed me, you need not believe that. Still, if the
          Lord see fit to take me away, I am just as ready to go while on
          this mission as at any other time; I never expect to be better
          prepared, though I presume that I shall only be gone a few weeks
          and return, and I ask all the brethren and sisters to be faithful
          while I am gone.
          Do not be fretting about this, that, or the other thing, for I
          will warrant that we shall have harvest as well as seed time, and
          that we shall reap a good harvest. I expect that some of the
          brethren may think, "Now is the time for speculation," and may
          run and buy up all the wheat and flour for that purpose, but
          there is enough and will be enough, there will be no lack, and if
          we have no surplus, what does it matter? It will all be right,
          and we will acknowledge the hand of the Lord in all things.
          It would be pleasing if all the Saints had strong faith and
          confidence, but sometimes many seem to falter in their feelings.
          I do not know how many I might find in this congregation who
          would have faith enough to believe that we could live on the tops
          of these high mountains, which are 6,619 feet higher than the
          Temple Block, in case we were called to go up there and live, and
          there was no other place for us; I do not know whether a great
          many in this congregation could have faith to believe that we
          could live there.
          At the same time, when I exhort the brethren to have faith, I
          really had rather that they would have good works; I do not care
          half so much about their faith as I do about their works. Faith
          is not so obvious a principle, but in good works you see a
          manifestation, an evidence, a proof that there is something good
          about the person who is in the habit of doing them.
               Now, if the people will only be full of good works, I will
          insure that they will have faith in time of need. I wish the
          brethren to be diligent in their affairs here, to be honest,
          faithful, prudent, and upright, and try to receive the spirit of
          the Gospel. I am ready to acknowledge that this people have the
          Gospel, that they are a good people; they are the best we know of
          upon the earth. At the same time there is a great lack with
          regard to the sentiments of many of them, with regard to their
          understanding, their views, the proportions, the degree and
          quality of the spirit they are in possession of.
          All ought to seek to know the mind and will of the Lord, and when
          they know it, they will be taught that the interest of this
          people is the interest of the Lord, and that all we do is for His
          glory. This is not all, it is likewise for our own benefit, and
          when we learn the principles of the Gospel perfectly, we shall
          learn that our interest is one, that we have no correct
          individual interest separate from this kingdom; if we have true
          interest at all, it is in the kingdom of God. If we truly possess
          and enjoy anything, it is in this kingdom; if we build it up, we
          shall be built up; if we neglect so to do, we shall fail to
          sustain ourselves.
          If we draw off in our feelings and have a divided interest from
          the kingdom of God, we shall fail in obtaining the object of our
          Priesthood. Nothing will stand on this earth, in the final issue,
          but the kingdom of God, and that which is in it; everything else
          will pass away--will be destroyed. Then if we in all our works
          seek to identify our feelings, our interests, our whole efforts
          in one to sustain and build up the kingdom of God on the earth,
          we are sure to build ourselves up.
          If we can correctly see and understand the proper labor of man,
          and will direct our course to build up the kingdom of God, it
          prepares the people to receive those blessings which the Lord has
          in store for them. But if a people are separate in their
          feelings, divided in their efforts, have an individual interest
          each one for themselves, it tends to destruction. Those who are
          well instructed in the principles of the kingdom of God, and who
          receive it as it is, will discern that all they do is in reality
          to benefit themselves; and when the people do all they can, the
          Lord is bound to do the rest.
          If we have good works and plenty of them, I have not the least
          doubt but what we shall reap a bountiful harvest this year, and
          have a surplus of grain after supplying all who will come here
          this season. But suppose that we should have no surplus, would
          not good works in abundance produce the faith that is necessary
          for the Lord to do the rest, when we have done what we can? Good
          works will produce good faith, and good faith will produce good
          If our faith is correct, we will apply our labor in that way
          which will promote our own interest, thereby promoting the
          interest of the kingdom of God on the earth; but if we have even
          one interest separate and apart from that kingdom, we do not
          fully promote our own individual welfare.
          If the people will be patient and faithful, industrious and
          humble, so as to know truth from error, and not worry themselves
          in the least, no person need be afraid of all earthly powers and
          influences, nor of the powers and influences of hell, not in the
          Brother George Q. Cannon has just stated, If he had not believed
          "Mormonism" until he went to the Sandwich Islands, what he saw
          there would have proved it to be true. We might ask whether there
          is an individual here who has seen enough of the handy work of
          the Lord, to prove "Mormonism" to be true. Are this people
          convinced by the course that the Lord has taken with them, and by
          what He has done for them, that "Mormonism" is true? If there was
          no other proof, that might be satisfactory, but after we have had
          that proof, we need the testimony we must have.
          In all the labor of the Saints, when faith springs up in the
          heart, good works will follow, and good works will increase that
          pure faith within them. That is the case with brother Cannon, and
          that is the case with every Saint.
          What the Lord has done for this people would convince any man in
          the world, upon rational principles, that it is not the wisdom of
          man, nor his power or might, nor the power or might of this
          people unitedly, that has accomplished what has been done, but
          that it has been brought to pass by an invisible power. Still a
          person, unless he has the light of the Spirit within him, will
          attribute the work of the Lord to the wisdom of man, or
          necromancy, or the power of the devil. Again, a person may see
          the power of the devil displayed, and mistake it for the power of
          God, for without the light of the Spirit one cannot tell the
          difference between the power of the Lord and the power of the
          We must have the testimony of the Lord Jesus to enable us to
          discern between truth and error, light and darkness, him who is
          of God, and him who is not of God, and to know how to place
          everything where it belongs. That is the only way to be a
          scientific Christian; there is no other method or process which
          will actually school a person so that he can become a Saint of
          God, and prepare him for a celestial glory; he must have within
          him the testimony of the spirit of the Gospel.
          Persons may see miracles performed; may see the sick healed, the
          eyes of the blind opened, the lame made to leap, and even the
          dead raised, and may acknowledge that it is all done by the power
          of God, but will all this enable them to discern whether it is
          the power of God or not? No, it will not. They must have the
          spirit by which the dead are raised, by which the sick are
          healed, and the eyes of the blind opened, or they cannot tell
          whether it is done by the power of God or the power of the devil,
          or whether there is a mist over their own eyes.
          I make these remarks that you may understand that my faith is not
          placed upon the Lord's working upon the islands of the sea, upon
          His bringing the people here, upon His causing a drouth in the
          eastern lands, and wars, bloodshed, and destruction among the
          people; no upon the favors He bestows upon this people, or upon
          that people, neither upon whether we are blessed or not blessed,
          but my faith is placed upon the Lord Jesus Christ, and my
          knowledge I have received from him.
          That must be the case with every person who expects to receive a
          celestial glory, to be crowned in a celestial kingdom of our God.
          We might have a drouth here, and still, by some invisible power
          or hand, this whole people be sustained, even though not a
          mouthful of bread was raised in this whole Territory. Would that
          prove that our God is the God we should serve? To a person who
          knows anything about the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, it is
          no proof at all.
          If we read right, in the last days we expect the power of the
          enemy to have a great influence among the people, and to succeed
          in deceiving very many. Do you expect the eyes of the blind
          opened by the power of the devil? I do, and I expect to see the
          lame made to leap, and the ears of the deaf unstopped by that
               Have any of this congregation ever seen, witnessed, or had
          any knowledge of such a thing? Yes. Have the sick been healed?
          Yes, both by the power of God and by the power of the devil. We
          say that we can witness that the power of God has healed the
          sick. Are there individuals here who have seen the sick healed
          when they did not know by what power they were healed? Yes, a
          great many. Mesmerism has healed many persons in the world. Do
          you know whether that works by the power of God, or by the power
          of the devil? You do not, unless you have the light of
          revelation. You may believe the testimony of others, but unless
          you get a revelation for yourselves, you do not know whether it
          is by the power of God or by the power of the devil. Have we
          witnessed persons apostatizing from this people, from the kingdom
          of God, to go into the world and become wicked, and give way to
          swearing, drinking, gambling, and horse-racing, and become as
          they formerly had been, only more wicked than they were previous
          to coming into this Church, and that, too, through the principle
          of Mesmerism?
          I know of many whom Mesmerism has led out of this Church; they
          would see the sick healed, and attribute it to the power of God;
          would fall under its influence, embrace and practice it, and thus
          give the devil power over them to lead them out of the kingdom of
          God. They could not tell whether it was the power of God or the
          power of the devil. What is the reason? They had not the light of
          revelation within them; they had not the knowledge of God. Are
          you not aware how easily we may be deceived? A neighbor comes
          along and tells you a story, and you are ready to believe him,
          for, you say, "That man is a man of truth, I must believe his
          statement. That sister is a woman of truth, I cannot but believe
          her statement.
          Have any of you ever experienced a circumstance like this? For
          instance, a person, say a sister in the Church, has a dream, that
          such and such things are going to take place; she tells it to
          another in the morning; that one tells it to a second person by
          noon, who tells it to a third ere night, and so on. How long has
          that story to go the rounds before it is told as a revelation--as
          a vision, and perhaps as coming from a man of God, from a proper
          source, that the Lord is going to do thus and so, for there is a
          revelation upon it? I have known people to be thus deceived here
          in this city, and I have also known them to be greatly deceived
          upon a true principle, if they had only understood it, but they
          did not understand it.
          Mesmerism is an inverted truth; it originated in holy, good, and
          righteous principles, which have been inverted by the power of
          the devil.
          Again, many people in this city do not know whether astrology is
          true or not, whether it is of God or of the devil; hence they are
          liable to be deceived, as is every person unless they have the
          power of revelation within themselves. If there are any brethren
          here who have been studying astrology, and they were called upon
          to speak would they not say that they believed it to be a true
          science? They would; they testify that they know it to be true.
          But what does it do for them? It leads them into thousands of
          errors. Does God ever lead you into error? Is He mistaken when He
          reveals? No; when He sets you to make calculations and figures, I
          will insure you that every sum will prove and come out precisely
          right. The Lord does not deceive people, but astrology and
          Mesmerism do lead them astray. How many deceptions are there in
          the world? Millions, for a great many spirits have gone forth
          into the world to deceive the people. Spirit rappings are of the
          same class. Are they calculated to deceive the people? They are.
          There are many Elders in this house who, if I had the power to
          Mesmerise that vase and make it dance on that table, would say
          that it was done by the power of God; and I except that some of
          them would begin to shout, and that some of the sisters would
          shout, "Glory be to God, hallelujah." Who could tell whether it
          was done by the power of God or the power of the devil? No
          person, unless he had the revelations of Jesus Christ within him.
          I suppose you are ready to ask brother Brigham if he thinks the
          power of the devil could make the vase dance. Yes, and could take
          it up and carry it out doors, just as easy as to turn up a table
          and move it here and there, or to cause a rap, rap, rap, or to
          bake and pass around pancakes, or to get hold of a person's hand,
          and make him write in every style you can think of, imitating
          George Washington's Benjamin Franklin's, Joseph Smith's, and
          others' autographs. Can you tell whether that is by the power of
          God or by the power of the devil? No, unless you have the
          revelations of Jesus Christ.
          Now do not let the power of the devil deceive you. You may ask,
          "How shall we know, brother Brigham, whether you are telling us
          the truth or not?" Get the spirit of revelation, then you will
          know, and not without. Will you take my counsel? (though you may
          do as you please with regard to that) if you will, I can tell you
          what to do, and what all the Latter-day Saints--whom I have
          preached to from the first of my preaching, from the first of my
          testimony that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God, and that the
          Book of Mormon is true--would have done if they had followed my
          counsel, and that is, to seek unto the Lord your God until He
          opens the visions of your minds, and lets the rays of eternity
          shine within you.
          I never would have been a "Mormon" had it not been for that; no,
          never. Not that I am proof against false spirits and delusions,
          but I had seen so much nonsense on the earth, that I had not the
          least particle of confidence in any "ism" that was going, and I
          never did have until I sought unto the Lord my God with all my
          If you would take my counsel you never would cease to plead with
          the Lord, until He opened the eyes of you understanding and
          revealed eternity to you, that you might know for yourselves how
          things are, and when you know and keep in that spirit, you will
          never be deceived, but the spirit of truth will always be with
          you, and if you cleave to that, it will lead you into all truth
          and holiness. Without it, you are constantly liable to be
          deceived, to receive evil, false reports, and false testimony,
          through the evil power and arts which have been upon the earth
          from the days of Adam until now.
          Mesmerism is a true principle inverted, just like every other
          evil or error. Show me one principle that has originated by the
          power of the devil. You cannot do it. I call evil inverted good,
          or a correct principle made an evil use of. Has Mesmerism a
          resemblance to any true principle? It has. In one feature it
          resembles the principle taught in the 14th and part of the 15th
          verses of the 5th chapter of the general epistle of the Apostle
          James, "If any are sick, &c." But why not say to the sick, be
          made well; just as well as to put your hands upon them? Because
          in the latter case, they come in connection with the same fluid
          and power which are in the operator, and if I, as the operator,
          have any good power, it tends to thwart the evil influence that
          is afflicting the sick, and to cause it to depart; through this
          connection the power of God administers to the sick, and that,
          too, upon rational principles.
          The first Elders can recollect, when we commenced preaching
          "Mormonism," that present revelation and a Prophet of God on the
          earth were the great stumbling blocks to the people, were what we
          had to contend against, and were, seemingly, the most potent
          obstacles in our way to the introduction of the Gospel. The
          people would meet us with, "There is no such thing now as
          prophets sent of God; they all died long ago, and the revelations
          have long since been closed up." The first Elders had to argue
          with the people, and show them from the Scriptures that if they
          were complied with according to the letter and spirit, there
          would be Prophets and revelations on the earth.
          The Elders of Israel were prepared to meet the priests on this
          ground, and they prevailed over the devil, for those who believed
          the Bible saw that they had to believe in new revelation, and the
          devil had to give up that point.
          What next? When the world would believe in new revelation, the
          devil commenced to give them his revelations by spirit rapping,
          and by every kind of necromancy that he could induce the people
          to believe. He had to resort to a new method for deceiving
          mankind, for the old plan did not entirely succeed against the
          revelation of the truth, the sending of angels, and the causing
          the hearts of the people to be filled with the light of eternity.
          I recollect meeting some priests; and taking them on their own
          grounds. They believed that the Bible had a literal meaning, and
          that if it was literally carried out in the lives of the people,
          the same gifts and blessings would be produced as anciently. They
          cited revelation after revelation given in ancient days, and
          quoted miracle after miracle. I said, "Suppose now that I am an
          infidel, how do your miracles look to me? Do not you own creed
          and your own views teach you all the time that a poor miserable
          witch, called the witch of Endor, had power to raise the Prophet
          Samuel from the dead? Was that done by the power of your God that
          you are speaking about?" "O, no." "What proof have you that she
          was not as good a woman as ever lived, and had as much power as
          any in her day? Your own Bible teaches you that Samuel was a
          Prophet of God, and that she had power to raise him from the
          dead; then, why don't you worship her as a great saint?" They
          left the question and turned to Moses, who had access to all the
          learning of Egypt; "and when Pharaoh had called in his wise men;,
          his astrologers and soothsayers," said I, "Moses was a little
          smarter than the rest of those Egyptians, and all you can say
          about it is, that he had a few keys which led him a little ahead
          of the astrologers of Egypt; but they were on the course of
          miracle working, and you have no evidence to prove to the
          contrary. You say that Moses was a Prophet of God, and that he
          led a people out of the land of Egypt. But Pharaoh's soothsayers
          could turn the water to blood, &c., and when they threw their
          canes on the floor they became serpents; now, because Moses' cane
          or serpent swallowed up theirs, you naturally give him the
          preference. True, this indicates that he was a little the
          smartest man, and that he had a few more keys than those had who
          were around Pharaoh. Have you any argument to prove more than
          that? Take your Bible and produce one if you can." They were
          compelled to abandon that point.
          Had a man who did not know Moses, nor Pharaoh's wise men--one
          destitute of revelation and of a knowledge of heavenly
          things--one who knew nothing about God, devils, angels, nor their
          power; nothing about good or bad principles--stepped in and seen
          those miracles wrought, do you not perceive that he could not
          have told which was from a good or which was from an evil source?
          He could not have judged the matter upon any worldly principle.
          Moses says to Pharaoh, "Let the children of Israel go." He would
          not do it. "Then," says Moses, "I will cause frogs to come upon
          the whole land." Pharaoh replies, "I don't believe it." But up
          they came. He calls for his soothsayers, astrologers and wise
          men, and tells them what Moses had done, and asks them what they
          can do. "We can do just what he has." And sure enough up came the
          Moses next made the dust into lice. Pharaoh calls for his wise
          men, saying, "What can you do, my friends?" "O, we can do the
          same." How could a man, woman, nation or people, destitute of the
          spirit of revelation, discern and determine which were right,
          Moses or the wise men of Egypt? They could not.
          Hence, you comprehend that every principle set forth in our holy
          religion--every part of the religious experience which we have
          obtained on the earth, proves the necessity there is for all
          Saints to live their religion, that the Lord may reveal unto
          them, from time to time, His will concerning them. Then you would
          not be troubled about crickets, nor about grasshoppers, rain,
          drouth, nor anything else; but you would inquire what the Lord
          requires of you, and how He wishes you to do His will on the
          earth. Pay attention to what the Lord requires of you and let the
          balance go. He will take care of that if you will acknowledge His
          hand in all things. Then you will rejoice that your names are
          written in heaven--that you have the privilege of being able to
          discern between the right and wrong, to recognize the goings
          forth of the Lord, and that you can perceive His handy work among
          the people and His footsteps among the nations; how He pulls down
          one kingdom here and raises another there, and turns and
          overturns in the earth according to His good pleasure and men
          cannot help it, and the people know it not--they understand not.
          The Lord causes the people to bring forth His purposes that His
          Saints may rejoice, and that wickedness may eventually be
          destroyed from the earth; He will bring it all about, therefore
          let us pay attention to our duties. Attend to your crops, and let
          the gardens be attended to; and if your corn is eaten off to-day,
          plant again to-morrow; if your wheat is cut down by the
          grasshoppers, sow a little more and drag it in. Last season when
          the grasshoppers came on my crops, I said, "Nibble away, I may as
          well feed you as to have my neighbors do it; I have sown plenty,
          and you have not raised any yourselves." And when harvest came
          you would not have known that there had been a grasshopper there;
          the yield was as good as I expected at the planting and sowing.
          Do your duty and cleave to the truth, and let us attend to
          adorning this block and to building the temple, and let the
          brethren come and pay their labor tithing. We have completed what
          some call the endowment house, though what I call the House of
          the Lord. In it you will get your endowments, but do not fret
          about it, for you will receive them in your times.
          Let us build the temple, and when we have finished that building
          we will call it the Temple of our God. Be diligent and upright in
          all things, and acknowledge the hand of the Lord in all things;
          rejoice evermore, pray without ceasing, and in everything give
          thanks, even if you have nothing but buttermilk and potatoes.
               Do those things that are necessary to be done and let those
          alone that are not necessary, and we shall accomplish more than
          we do now.
          In the United States, where I lived in my youth, I have known
          immigrant families who would rise early, have their breakfast
          ready and eaten in about forty minutes, and all turn out to work
          on their farm until half-past eleven, then go to the house, eat
          dinner and not devote more than an hour for rest. What was the
          result of this steady labor? People who had crossed the ocean
          with no money and with very little clothing, who knew little or
          nothing about farming, and in a new country, would soon have a
          good farm cleared and paid for. In a few years more they would
          have their carriages and horses, and every comfort and luxury to
          be derived from fine gardens and orchards. After a while they
          could purchase more land and add it to their well cultivated
          farms, and, perhaps, in fifteen or twenty years, become wealthy
          though they had nothing but health and industry to begin with.
          If we wish to be rich the Lord has wealth in store for us, but
          let us take a course to gather it together, and then to prepare
          it for usefulness when it is gathered. I am not for hoarding up
          gold and other property to lie useless, I wish to put everything
          to a good use. I never keep a dollar lying idly by me, for I wish
          all the means to be put into active operation. If I now had in my
          possession one hundred million dollars in cash, I could buy the
          favor or the publishers of newspapers and control their presses;
          with that amount I could make this people popular, though I
          expect that popularity would send us to hell. True with such a
          sum we could gather up the poor scattered Israelites and redeem
          Zion, but I feel to say, "No, Lord, when riches before their time
          are agoing to destroy the people."
          Let the people have righteousness, be taught of the Lord, live in
          the revelations of Jesus Christ, and then they can handle the
          gold and silver of the whole earth without having a desire for
          it, only as a means with which to gather Israel, redeem Zion,
          subdue and beautify the earth, and bring all things in readiness
          to live with God in heaven.
          May the Lord help us to do this great work. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, February 25, 1855
                         Heber C. Kimball, February 25, 1855
                      A Discourse, by President H. C. Kimball, 
                            Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, February 25, 1855.
          Brother Woodruff has just given us a sketch of many things,
          touching upon the Prophets, the welfare of Israel, and the sorrow
          and desolation that will finally fall upon the wicked; and the
          wicked among us will not escape, any more than will those in the
          I was thinking considerably upon what he said about the
          wickedness that is creeping into our midst, and of that
          wickedness being rebuked. I want my brethren and sisters to
          understand that only those who are guilty are rebuked. Our
          rebukes do not touch the innocent, nor affect them one hair's
          breadth. When you use the whip the lash will, perhaps, hit a
          person who sits in the outer edge of the congregation, and one in
          this, and another in that part of the room. It is intended for
          them, and not for those it does not hit. You will not hear any
          man or woman, enter a complaint, or find any fault with brother
          Brigham, or brother Heber, except that person who is hit.
          When you load your musket with buckshot, or coarse shot, and fire
          into a flock of ducks or geese, you never will see any flutter
          except the wounded. When you see a person flutter, you may know
          that is the character who is hit, and is the one who ought to be
          I was reflecting, yesterday, whether I had any articles left of
          all I had when I came into this Church, and I found that I had
          one chest which brother Brigham Young made and painted at my
          house, and my wife has a little tin trunk which her father gave
          her before she was married, and I have one earthen tea canister
          which I made about the time I was married. I think those are the
          only articles left of those I had when I came into this Church.
          What is the reason? I have been driven from my possessions, and
          robbed of the things which were given me by my father and mother,
          and of those given to my wife by her parents.
          I reflect upon these things, and when I see sin working in our
          midst, like the leaven in a measure of meal, I feel to rebuke it;
          and I would rather die in the valleys of the mountains than be
          driven again. I am against sin, and I am one with those who are
          against it. We are at war with it, and with the devil and with
          his works; and so is every good, honest, virtuous, holy Saint.
          Will you sit down and go to sleep? Will you rock yourselves in
          your easy chairs and see the leaven of iniquity working in our
          midst? (Voices, "No") Don't say no, and then do it. I have never
          injured any gentleman, by speaking in this congregation. None of
          my remarks have had reference to a true gentleman, but I have
          reference to those who take a course to pollute this people; they
          are the ones who deserve the lash.
          There are men and women in our midst, and perhaps some who
          profess "Mormonism," who would take my life in a moment, if they
          dare, and the life of President Young. As for death, I do not
          trouble myself much about it. When the time comes for me to
          depart from this life and go into what we call eternity, to pass
          through the vail, it is, simply, to leave the body to rest
          awhile, and blessed are the dead who die in the Lord, for their
          sleep shall be sweet unto them. Death is merely a sleep to the
          body, and all the fear I have concerning it is what arises from
          my traditions. I was taught in my youth that after death I had to
          go directly into the bowels of hell, and go down, down, down,
          because there is no bottom to it. I am not troubled about any
          such thing as that, for I never expect to see any worse hell than
          I have seen in this world. And those who do not the works of
          righteousness, and are not worthy to be gathered with the spirits
          of the Saints, will go into precisely such society in the world
          of spirits, as they are now in.
          The spirits of the Saints will be gathered in one, that is, of
          all who are worthy; and those who are not just will be left where
          they will be scourged, tormented, and afflicted, until they can
          bring their spirits into subjection and be like clay in the hands
          of the potter, that the potter may have power to mould and
          fashion them into any kind of vessel, as he is directed by the
          Master Potter.
               When the Lord spoke to Jeremiah He told him to go down to
          the potter's house, and there he would cause him to hear His
          words. When he went down to the potter's house, "Behold, he
          wrought a work on the wheels." The potter tried to bring a lump
          of clay in subjection, and he worked and tugged at it, but the
          clay was rebellious, and would not submit to the will of the
          potter, and marred in his hands. Then, of course, he had to cut
          it from the wheel and throw it into the mill to be ground over,
          in order that it might become passive; after which he takes it
          again and makes of it a vessel unto honor, out of the same lump
          that was dishonored, because it would not be subject to the
          potter, and was, therefore, cut from the wheel, and put through
          another grinding until it was passive. There may ten thousand
          millions of men go to hell, because they dishonor themselves and
          will not be subject, and after that they will be taken and made
          vessels unto honor, if they will become obedient, and God will
          make us, who are His servants, bring about His purposes. Can you
          find any fault with that?
          The Lord said to Jeremiah, "O, house of Israel, cannot I do with
          you as the potter? Behold as the clay is in the potter's hand, so
          are ye in mine hand." They dishonored themselves and were
          rebellious, and I have cut them off and thrown them in the mill,
          and they shall grind until they are passive. And I haven taken a
          gentler lump, to see if I cannot make a vessel unto honor. By and
          by that lump will dishonor itself, and be thrown back into the
          mill, and God will take Israel and make of them a vessel unto
          Some time ago, when I spoke to the congregation in words of
          rebuke, it made a wonderful stir with a few men, that is, with
          those who were hit, and with those who were filled with sympathy
          for them, because they were such fine, accomplished gentlemen.
          After I went home from the council that same evening, I dreamed
          that I was at work at my old trade of making pots, that I had a
          kiln, and that brothers Brigham, Grant, and others were there.
          The kiln was full of earthen vessels, and we had brunt wood in
          the arches until it became red hot, but the blaze was coming out
          of the flues. It did not draw as we wished it to, for the wood
          was not sufficiently dry. We went and got some good, dry wood,
          but were gone sometime, and when we came back the kiln got
          considerably low in heat. We put in some dry wood, and soon
          brought it back to the same heat it had before we left it. But
          when I began to look around, I saw a great many vessels, off on
          one side, that were not good for anything, they would not stand
          the fire and began to fall in when nobody was touching them; a
          whole tier of them fell in at a time. Said I, "Why have you made
          these vessels so thin? You have made them two thirds larger than
          they ought to be, with the amount of clay that is in them. Their
          skin is too thin, you have stretched them too far, and not given
          them the thickness in proportion. What shall we do with them? Let
          us break them up and put them into the mill, and grind them up
          again. The material is good, but they all need making over."
          Do you understand that dream? The Elders or somebody else, had
          stretched those vessels too much; they had got the big head, that
          is, their heads were larger than the substances would sustain,
          and they fell in--the vessels fell in. The clay was good, but the
          vessels were made too big in the start; we must not stretch them
          too much. Potters always work according to the amount of clay on
          hand; if it is a small lump they make a small vessel, and make it
          all the way of a thickness, as near as possible.
          In the dream, I discovered that there were many just such thin
          characters all around us, and they fell in because we touched
          some of them. I have touched many people here, both men and
          women, who profess to be Latter-day Saints, and I hurt them just
          as bad as I hurt some strangers. But I never hurt the feelings of
          a true Saint, nor of a stranger who is a gentleman, no, not one
          of them. I hurt scoundrels who will take a course, and have taken
          a course, to pollute themselves, and to put the leaven of
          corruption and wickedness in the midst of this people. I am
          directly opposed to such characters, and to their principles. Do
          you understand why? Because I have been driven and afflicted,
          until there is hardly a vestige of anything left which I had when
          I came into "Mormonism."
                I am plain and definite in my language, and I use plain
          figures, and now and then one that is sometimes considered
          vulgar, by those who are themselves vulgar. To those who are
          pure, all things are pure, but to those who are impure, all
          things are impure. Again, when you are pure, righteous--without
          sin, you think, many times, that everybody else is without sin.
          When I see, hear, and know of practices in our midst, that are
          impure, I will go against them. Gentlemen, you may expect this, I
          would rather die, than undergo what I have already undergone in
          the travel from Nauvoo to this place, under the same
          When we left that city, between one and two hundred souls were
          attached to me, and looked to me for bread, and I had to travel
          to this land, when it seemed as though I could not live under the
          load. And President Young was in the same situation, with another
          company attached to him, and thus we travelled through sorrow,
          misery, and death.
          Now, if any persons wish to begin another scrape, and desire to
          again break us up, and to corrupt this people, and to bring
          death, hell, and the devil into our midst, come on, for God
          Almighty knows that I will strive to slay the man who undertakes
          it. [The congregation said, "Amen."]
          I am opposed to corruption; I wish every man to keep himself
          pure, whether he is Jew, or Gentile, or Latter-day Saint; keep
          yourselves pure. I do not allow my women to fondle with other
          men, or to sit in their laps, and they must not suffer other men
          to kiss or hug them, if they do, I will cast them off. Let my
          wives alone, and let my daughters alone, except you have my
          permission to pay them attention, and do as you wish to be done
          I talk plainly, I am not afraid, for I am my heavenly Father's
          friend, and I am a friend to all His sons and daughters, whether
          they make a profession of religion or not, but they must not
          undertake to pollute this people. I delight to have strangers
          come to my house, and they shall have the privilege of visiting
          and associating with me, and I will associate with them, on
          condition that they behave like true gentlemen.
          "Mormonism" is meat and drink to us, it is sweeter than the honey
          comb; it is life to us, and to the world it is poison.
          "Mormonism" is true, it is righteous, and we are a pure people,
          with but very few exceptions.
          I know that there are some who cultivate unwholesome principles
          and practices. The old saying is, "Birds of a feather will flock
          together," so they will, perhaps, leave us. I am plain, and I
          will tell you what I think of you. If a man rebels, I will tell
          him of it, and if he resents a timely warning, he is unwise.
          Notwithstanding I am a plain spoken man, I never had a difficulty
          that would bring me before a court of my country. I dislike and
          despise dissension, war, and bloodshed, and that is why I am not
          pleased with the lawyers. I may like their persons, but God knows
          that I do not like their works no their principles, when they
          strive to produce confusion and contention here, after we have
          made laws which suit us, good laws, and as few of them as
          This people are a good people, and I love them as I love my life.
          But I would rather lay down my life, than to again pass through
          what I have already endured.
          I have never yet shed man's blood, and I pray to God that I never
          may, unless it is actually necessary. I have never had occasion
          to fight, but I have often stood, with my fire-lock in readiness,
          guarding the Prophet Joseph, (with brother Brigham and others)
          for his life was sought all the time, and that too in Kirtland,
          Ohio, that civilized country. I stood by him until his death, and
          I will stand by President Young in like manner, God helping me,
          and so will thousands of this people, and I know it.
          God grant that this spirit may rest upon you, ye Elders of
          Israel, ye servants of god, upon you, mothers in Israel, and upon
          you, daughters of God. May it abound in you, and be inherited by
          your posterity, that you may become like angels of god, and stand
          in the defence of Israel. These are the blessings I seal upon all
          of you. Be virtuous and pure, and keep your hands from everything
          that is not your own, and restore everything that is your
          Do as you would wish to be done by, and God will bless you for
          ever. Lay aside all covetous, penurious, and narrow-contracted
          feelings, cast them off. Be one, brethren. Let each family be one
          with its head, and let that head be united with the Presidency,
          and then we are one and God is for us, and who can be against us?
          May God instruct you, and cause these principles to enter deep
          into your hearts and multiply within you, from this time
          henceforth, and for ever. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Amasa
          M. Lyman, December 9, 1855
                          Amasa M. Lyman, December 9, 1855
                             A Discourse by Amasa Lyman, 
                            Delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, December 9, 1855.
          It seems, my brethren and sisters, that an occurrence of
          circumstances has brought us together again; and the occurrence
          of circumstances has taken away from you, for a time, those who
          have been more with you than I have myself. But there is one
          thing that has not changed, viz: our interests--the nature of the
          object to be gained by us as Saints.
          The simple fact of the Presidency having left us for a brief
          period of time, has not effected, legitimately, any change in
          those things that should interest us, and engage our attention.
          If we are Saints at all we have the same interest to sustain, the
          same knowledge to gain, and the same fountain from which to draw
          that knowledge as those have who have gone from us for a season.
          It is our right, our privilege, and a duty that we owe to
          ourselves; to those with whom we stand connected by the ties of
          the Everlasting Covenant, as well as by all the relationship that
          binds us to each other as intelligent human beings, to continue
          our labor, and so labor that our efforts may be continually in
          the acquisition of that knowledge that is requisite to our
          salvation; for this comprises all that should interest us, by
          whatever name you may call it, or how many divisions or
          subdivisions you may make of it, and yet when all is considered
          in connexion, the one part with the other constitutes but simply
          the salvation which we seek. That alone will render us happy;
          that alone is capable of accomplishing for us that, that is
          necessary to our peace and comfort here, and hereafter. We may
          perhaps think that there are many very nice distinctions which
          might be made between different things, as we may consider them,
          that may constitute in us, with us, or for us the means of
          happiness and comfort; and that one thing considered is one
          thing, and something else is salvation.
          I do not know of any thing that exists, as a means of happiness
          and comfort within our reach, or that can be made available, but
          that belongs to our salvation.
          These things are so various and so numerous that we might fill up
          a short lifetime in recounting them, and still the sum of them
          would then lack much of being told; but the great business of our
          life should be to have them and enjoy them, and then, perchance,
          we should be able, to some small extent, to appreciate them, and
          our happiness, and comfort, and glory will be determined in its
          extent, and defined precisely by the extent to which we
          appreciate the great truths that exist around us, in the midst of
          which we have our being.
          So that when we have gained the salvation we seek for, in all the
          vast infinitude to which it may extend, with the experience of
          untold ages--when the experience of almost numberless ages shall
          have added their contribution to its stores of wealth and
          enjoyment; when these shall be circumstances that surround us, we
          will find that it is all constituted of one thing, which is
          simply learning to comprehend the truth that exists around us, in
          the midst of which we live, move, and have our being.
          To effect this is the object of the Gospel--the plan of
          salvation--that is good for us to reason upon and speak of often
          one to another; to reflect upon, that we may understand the
          object for which the Gospel is revealed to us, that we may be
          enabled to appropriate the things that are rendered available to
          us--those appliances that are thrown within our reach, in such a
          way as to conduce to the accomplishment of this object. Then, in
          order to the proper appropriation of those things, it is needful
          that we should understand what is to be affected by it; it is
          needful we should be correct on this point, lest we might be
          seeking after something that does not exist, and, consequently,
          we should never find the reality; lest we should be exploring
          some country to find jewels of our happiness where it is not.
          All of us have experience enough to give us comprehension of the
          truth, sufficient to be satisfied, that our search for a thing
          where it does not exist, must ultimately prove a fruitless one,
          one that will not bring to us a reward for our labor and toil,
          that will not give us comfort for the anxiety we have cherished,
          while in search for something we should fail to find.
               Well, then, what is it, my brethren and sisters, let us
          reason a little this morning, what is it the Gospel has to do for
          us? What have we calculated in our own minds it is? Has something
          that does not now exist to be created? Has our natural
          constitutional being to become changed by our becoming the
          recipients of salvation? Are we to be saved as we are,
          constituted as we are, or are we to be saved as some other kind
          of beings? What are we to be when we are saved? Do we suppose
          that we will be seen and known, that we will be recognized as the
          same individuals that we are now?
          If we are not, I would like much to know what I would be, and who
          I might be, because there are some things that, could I avoid it,
          I would not be. But, in fact, I do not know that there are any
          reasons that have ever commended themselves to my judgment, as
          being good ones, for me to entertain a wish to change my identity
          at all.
          The enjoyment of salvation with me, this far, has been ever
          cherished and understood in connexion with my own identity, that
          when I am saved I shall be, simply, brother Lyman saved, and
          nobody else; I should be, simply, brother Lyman in possession of
          all the knowledge requisite to salvation, and the consequent
          participant of all the blessings accruing from having that
          knowledge in possession. If I am not that, I shall be
          disappointed, I shall not be happy, or satisfied, unless I lose
          all my present expectations and faith.
          Then it is, simply, we who are here to-day that are to be saved;
          and what is it all embraced in? Simply, in a change of our
          condition, and not of the condition of some other individual. In
          the place of ignorance, we will possess that principle of
          knowledge and comprehension that makes us free. What from? From
          ignorance. That is all.
          Well, says one, "Are there not many other things besides
          ignorance?" If there are calculating men and women in this room,
          who can think and reflect, I wish that class particularly, if
          they never have done it, to make it their study, for a little
          time, to determine one thing for their own benefit, and for the
          benefit of others, as far as their influence may extend, to find
          out how much of the ill that afflicts mankind is not truly
          attributable to ignorance, to the existence of darkness that
          pervades the human mind, and in consequence of which they fail to
          comprehend the truth. By reason of it they know not God, nor
          understand the principles upon which He acts.
          When you find out an evil that is not traceable, legitimately and
          truly, to this great cause--this great apparent fountain of evil
          and wrong that exists in the world, just mark it down, name it,
          and let me see it; if there is any other source for evil, I want
          to know it. Jesus, we understand, came into the world to save
          sinners; he came to save, as we say, lost and fallen man; he came
          to restore the sinful sons of earth to the enjoyment of the
          mercy, and the favor, and the blessing of heaven.
          What did Jesus propose to do, any more than, simply, to save men?
          The Gospel that he sent into the world proposes to do no more
          than to save men; and it does just as much for the poorest man as
          for the richest, it saves them, and that is all it does do.
          "But," says one, "does it not damn men also?" Do you think it
          does? Did you ever find anything about the Gospel that would damn
          any of you? "But does not the Scriptures hold out such an idea?"
          I do not know whether they do or not; you ought to know your own
          experience better than the Scriptures, because it is nearer to
          you, it is your own property. I would rather have my own
          experience than to have the Bible thrown in my face, it is richer
          far to me.
          What has the Gospel done for you, and for me? It has never done
          us any thing but good. "But," says one, "Here is a man that has
          embraced the truth and then has gone from it, left it, and is now
          damned." What has damned him? Is it the Gospel? Nothing has
          damned him but his own mean conduct; his own misdeeds that have
          influenced him thus against his own interest. Does the Gospel
          require him to commit sin? Does it require him to utter
          falsehoods, and cherish a principle of hypocrisy and practise
          deceit with his neighbor? No. The Gospel requires of him
          practical virtue, righteousness and truth in all his conduct.
          Then let us not charge the Gospel with damning any body, until we
          find out it has actually done it. The Gospel was sent into the
          world, by the Saviour of mankind, to place the means of salvation
          within the reach of mortals, to give to those who should believe,
          the power to become the sons of God. That was the object of this
          proclamation throughout the earth, and was the reason why it was
          taught in that simplicity that marked the teachings of the
          ministers of truth. The Scriptures promise salvation to those who
          believe; and those who do not, we are informed, shall be damned.
          What damns them that do not believe? The same thing that damned
          them before they heard the Gospel. They were in darkness, and
          what was their condition afterwards? They were in darkness.
          Then the object of this Gospel being sent unto the world was,
          simply, to give men a knowledge of the truth, and open their
          eyes, it was to cause the light to shine in the midst of the
          darkness that surrounded them; that in that light they might
          discover things as they exist around, that they were before
          ignorant of, and entertain conceptions of things that before did
          not reach or occupy their minds at all; all this was to effect
          man's salvation. From what? From the fall, or any other of the
          evils that surround him. I do not care whether you regard them as
          the consequences of the fall or not, I care not what you name the
          ills that afflict men, and keep them from the enjoyment of a
          fulness of happiness and glory; from them mankind have need to be
          saved; they constitute the chains with which men are bound--the
          clouds of darkness which obscure the light of truth, that
          prevents the sun-light of truth from rendering the whole sphere
          of man's being, radiant, glorious, and resplendent. In what? In
          that which the great architect of nature has placed there, and
          made all creation rich with.
          We live in the midst of it, and are insensible to the beauties
          around us, to the excellencies within our reach. We tread the
          blessings that cluster around our path, like the flowers of
          spring, under our feet, not appreciating their worth, instead of
          feasting upon the glory, power, skill, and judgment that are
          manifested in the combinations that have been associated
          together, to present this beauty to the eye.
          Well, so it is with truth and its excellency in all the various
          departments of nature's works and its glory. We live in the midst
          of it, and are starving; we are a poor, starving, miserable,
          wretched, beggarly set of creatures in the midst of plenty.
          Now it is from these chains, that bind us in this condition, that
          the Gospel proposes to set us free--that the plan of salvation is
          to snap asunder, and give unto us an abundant deliverance, and a
          correspondingly abundant entrance into the kingdom of God, and to
          make our future as glorious, as luminous, and as broad, as the
          path in which we have walked has been dangerous, dark, and
          gloomy. This is what the Gospel proposes to do for us. How is it
          to be effected? Upon this simple principle--by learning us the
          truth, and this is the reason why, that to know the only living
          and true God and Jesus Christ whom He has sent is eternal life.
          There is a reason for that as well as for every other truth that
          extends, as such, throughout the wide range of creation. It is
          eternal life, because it is freedom from the chains of darkness,
          from the dominion of error--an emancipation from that bondage
          that makes man, in his existence, wretched and miserable.
          Then, if this is actually salvation, where should we seek to know
          its blessings? How shall we come to the enjoyment of them?
          Simply, in the acquisition of knowledge. Says one, "Is this all?"
          Yes, this comprises all. "But must we not do right, and is it not
          important that we should?" Yes; but how can you do right before
          you know what right is?
          What do you Latter-day Saints do? I can see that miserable
          confusion among them that characterizes the men of the world;
          everything must give way to the pursuit of this world's wealth
          and honor; in their eyes this seems to be the only thing that can
          make them happy. And there are as many ways in which men seek out
          happiness, as there are men to seek it; and there is as great a
          variety of interests to be served in the world of mankind,
          collectively, as there are men who embrace those interests, and
          labor to save them, and these will be constantly in contact with
          each other, and what one man labors to build up, another labors
          to pull down; that which is the wealth of one is the poverty of
          another; what is the filling of one man's pocket is the draining
          of another's pocket to the last dime--the last dollar leaves him,
          and gets into his neighbor's purse. This is the way the world get
          rich, and imagine themselves happy, and this is the way many of
          the Latter-day Saints would find salvation--in undertaking to do
          right without first knowing what is right.
          The Saviour spoke sensibly and reasonably, when he said, "This is
          eternal life, to know the only true God, and Jesus christ whom He
          hath sent." Without knowing Him, what can you know rightly? What
          do you understand and comprehend of truth, rightly? Like
          geologists and chemists in the world, they dig a well, and find a
          great many crusts, that is when you apply the term crust to
          something that is a riddle to them, they find many kinds of
          material that enter into the combination of the earth. The
          alchemist analyzes portions of the earth, that are thrown out, to
          discover the different proportions and kinds of matter of which
          it is composed. What do they learn? Some truth. But what is it
          like? They cannot tell. If it possesses the property of an acid
          or an alkali they know it. But do they know anything about who
          combined its various parts, do they know anything about the
          active mind shadowed forth in the combinations they find? They do
          not. So we may search for truth in the earth, on the earth, and
          above the earth, and we may find a great deal, but we do not
          comprehend any thing of it, from the fact that we do not know
          God; we have not commenced at the beginning of our lesson.
          Many men have become satisfied there is a God, but they do not
          know Him, where He lives, who He looks like, or whether He is
          like anybody or anything that is seen, heard, handled, or
          comprehended by us. Now the Gospel simply proposes to teach the
          world of mankind the truth in relation to the great fountain of
          truth, that is at the beginning of all things that we can see as
          a beginning; to lead them to a discovery of facts in relation to
          that truth which pervades universal creation--that exists as far
          as existence is known, or not known, where it actually is. There
          is a truth that is co-equal in extent with it. If there is light
          there, it is its light, if glory, it belongs to truth.
          "Well," says one, "is it great as God? Does it comprehend God, or
          is God comprehended of it?" You know the great principle of
          eternal life is to know the only true and living God, &c. In our
          childish speculations we talk about a great many Lords and Gods,
          and you can get the doctrine made holy by applying the Scriptural
          language to it.
          But, supposing the Scriptures had said nothing about it, what man
          that has looked abroad upon the face of universal nature, as it
          is presented to us, who has lived in this being, and breathing
          world for only a few years, who has not learned and understood
          for himself, perfectly, that there is a principle of truth which
          pervades every thing which is in itself immutable, that is the
          same everywhere, in every land, country, and clime, whether we
          speak of a single atom, the crawling insect, or the clustering
          universe of worlds, all are moving, and existing, and are
          controlled by the same great law--the same great principle that
          causes them to have their existence in truth and harmony with
          each other.
          Let us return from travelling abroad--from this wandering, and
          see if we can find the same applied here at home with us. Is
          there a principle that does control us, and that we can control,
          a principle which is in all things, in which we live, move, and
          have our being, that is greater than the greatest thing we can
          conceive of, and embraces all things? Yes, the simple principle
          revealed in this small thing--two multiplied by two makes four,
          is one that we cannot change, or conceive of a principle by which
          it could be changed.
          We cannot entertain a conception of what it would be, if it was
          not what it is. It is all the time the same in every land,
          country or place. It is the same, whether we apply the principle
          to determine the number of apples in the marked basket, or
          whether we apply it in more extended calculations, in determining
          the magnitudes, times, and distances of the planets.
          Here is a principle to which we must yield; to which we must bow.
          Why? Simply, because it is greater than we, it defies our efforts
          to change it; it controls our actions, influences our being; it
          determines things, and we with other things are determined by it.
          What can we say to it? Can we treat it with indignity? No; for it
          will rule us; it governs us. What is it? It is the light that is
          within us. The revelation says "It is the light of our eyes that
          enlighteneth our understandings." And what is this? It is the God
          we see in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars, for He is
          the light thereof, and the power by which they were made. It is,
          simply, what the Apostle talked about anciently, as recorded in
          the Scriptures; he exclaims, "Great is the mystery of Godliness,
          God manifest in the flesh."
          Some may have supposed that the revelation of God is confined to
          some few things only--some few specimens of what we look upon in
          the wide range of nature's works, as they are called; I do not
          know as nature has any works. While we look upon these, we find
          that all we do see, read of, and can reach, by the means that we
          can render available for the acquisition of knowledge, and for
          the awakening of conceptions within the mind, in relation to the
          vast infinitude of the work of the Almighty we find that it is
          simply the shadowing forth of--what? Of this great principle of
          truth, this God that we adore, that we seek to know, whom to know
          aright is life everlasting. Why? Because it bursts the chains of
          ignorance asunder that have held us in bondage; it dissipates the
          clouds of darkness that obstructs the sun-light of truth from
          shining around us, and then, in the light of truth, we begin to
          see and comprehend what exists around us, and the relationship we
          sustain to nature, to God, to one another, and the object for
          which we live, and for which we are constituted, and the end to
          which we are tending.
          Until we begin to learn this, we are benighted and darkened; we
          are as effectually lost as is any man in a swamp without light,
          or without a guide, he is no worse off than we without the light
          of truth, for we know not which way to go, or in what direction
          to look for succour; we know not from whence deliverance is
          coming, or if it is coming at all.
          Then what do we need to save us? Simply, a knowledge of the
          truth. Says one, "I do not know but that God will save me." I
          know but little about Him, but I know more about Him than I do
          about any other God. Why? Because I have seen more of Him. Any of
          you that have gazed on the heavens, have seen the light of day,
          been cheered by the light of the sun, and comforted by its genial
          rays, have felt the exhilarating influences of it.
          Here is a God that I see, a God that I have heard, whose voice is
          uttered by all time, and millions of earths, and suns, in the
          magnitude of the universe, and thousands of universes, associated
          together, shadow forth His greatness and glory. Then there is a
          God who is gentle and kind, easy to be entreated, full of
          compassion and tender mercy, whose store house of good is richly
          filled to make--who happy? Those that seek for happiness. Where
          does He live? Every where. Which of the God is it? It is that God
          that lives everywhere; that lives through all life, and extends
          through all extent; that spreads undivided, and operates unspent;
          that is the God I am talking about now.
          What other God is there? You may talk about the Lord Jesus
          Christ, and about his Father; what did Jesus say of himself--that
          man who came into the world, and, as the Scriptures say, became
          the author of eternal salvation to as many as would believe? What
          did he say that he came into the world to do? No other work but
          what he saw his Father do.
          He came to do his Father's will. What is said of him? "Thy
          throne, O god, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness
          is the sceptre of thy kingdom." It was because he loved
          righteousness and hated iniquity, that he was preferred before
          his fellows, and was anointed with the oil of gladness above
          them. What had been done with his Father? Did Jesus say of
          himself that he was in the sun, and in the moon, and that he was
          the principle that enlightened our understanding? No, he did not
          say so, but he said, that any man who had looked upon these, had
          seen God moving in majesty and power.
          What does he say of himself? Says he, "Holiness is my name."
          Suppose we change it a little, and say he was a holy man, does it
          change the facts in the case any? No he was, simply, a holy man.
          How came he to be holy? Just as you and I shall come to be holy,
          if we ever are. What constituted him a holy man? Simply, his
          being guided by holy influences, his being engaged continually in
          the perpetration of holy and righteous deeds; this made him a man
          of holiness.
          Again he said, "Man of Counsel is my name;" because that he had
          been subject to counsel always. He came into this world to
          minister unto man, and laid down his life for him, because he was
          a man of counsel. He came to save man, because he was a man of
          counsel; and he preached the truth because he was a man of
          counsel. Were the perfections with which he was clothed inherent
          in him? I say no, because the Scriptures say no; he was made
          perfect through suffering, they inform us.
          We might call it experience, for he learned obedience by the
          things which he suffered. Well, then, we are required to be
          perfect even as he is perfect, and he required his disciples that
          were with him to be perfect, even as their Father in heaven was
          perfect. It opens to us this view of the matter. Jesus had
          nothing but what he gained, as vast and extended as might be the
          power with which he was clothed. The ability that rendered him
          sufficient for the accomplishment of the great work he
          accomplished, was the result of his gathering around him from the
          great fountain of truth, that amount of comprehension of the vast
          infinitude of truth, that vested him with the ability he
          This is the path in which we are to travel as Saints of God, in
          which we are to look for salvation, and gather from the same rich
          store the sum of our happiness, greatness, and glory. God was not
          too great to drink from the same fountain, and draw from it all
          He possessed of power, greatness, and glory. That which
          constitutes His glory, constitutes the greatness, power, might,
          and majesty of all who progress, and are clothed with the same
          principle. That the Father of Jesus Christ was in no way very
          different from himself is evident from what he said; he came to
          be nearly equal with his father, and is declared, by virtue of
          his obedience, heir of all his Father's inheritance. He says he
          came to do the same things he saw his Father do.
          Then if we wish to read the history of his Father, we have only
          to read the history of the son, for in reading the history of the
          son, we also read the history of the Father; and Jesus Christ has
          told us, his brethren, that this is eternal life to know the only
          living and true God, and Jesus Christ whom He has sent. What does
          that lead to? Not only to know that they had the truth, but to
          understand and comprehend the principle upon which they possessed
          it; whether it was truth inherent--that dwells in them from all
          eternity, without beginning or end, in the history of their
          existence--when they commenced to acquire knowledge, and whether
          they acquired knowledge of this great truth as we are taught to
          acquire it.
          Now that this was the highest object that was had in view in the
          proclamation of the Gospel--in its revelation to mankind--is
          obvious to me, it is as plain to me, as I can see anything else.
          Because when man has learned the truth, in relation to all these
          things, is there anything more which he can learn? No. It is the
          vast infinitude of truth that has reflected light enough around
          us to open our minds, and enable us to entertain a conception of
          nothing higher, more noble, nothing possessing greater
          excellencies than simply the truth itself.
          We talk about holiness, and glory, and power, and might, but
          there is no power, but what is of truth, no greatness, no
          uncontaminated bliss but what is of truth. It embraces the sum of
          all the excellencies combined in the wide range of universal
          existence; whether applied to a mote or a mountain; to a single
          planet, to a universe or to an association of universes.
          To learn the truth is the best thing we can do, it is a pursuit
          fraught with the greatest good to us, for it will bring salvation
          to us, and bestow upon us the bliss, and blessedness of that
          state in full; and enable us to appreciate it, for we shall have
          the light of truth to discover things as they exist around us.
          And this is in fact our happiness, glory, and strength. What can
          we see more, than when we first heard the sound of the Gospel?
          Let us consider--those of us who have had the privileges and
          blessings that a great many have not enjoyed; we who have had the
          experience of a score of years since we first heard the Gospel
          explained, talked about; since it was first suggested to us that
          the heavens have been propitious, in sending an invitation to the
          erring sons of earth, to return from their wandering, and place
          themselves under the tuition which heaven has instituted, to
          develop in them a perfect knowledge of the principles of truth. I
          say, what do we know more to-day than then? What capacity do we
          possess more? Says one, "I know a great deal more, and we are
          enabled to accomplish more now than we could then." It is,
          simply, because we know more truth, and in the application of it
          we can occupy a wider field, and are prepared to encounter a
          greater variety of circumstances, and under them all to be
          enabled to apply the truth, and create circumstances that are
          good and acceptable to God, to our increase in the truth, and to
          the increase of the kingdom of God upon the earth.
          The kingdom of God is being developed under the influence of the
          Gospel. How fast? Just as fast as true principles are developed
          in the hearts of men and women. Just so fast, and just so far the
          kingdom of God is actually developed, possesses strength, and is
          built up with sound, substantial materials that will outlive the
          waste of time, continuing to grow in strength and might when
          sublunary things have passed away. Taking this view of salvation,
          we see its object is to put that in our possession without which
          it is impossible for us to be happy. 
          Well then, should we be subject to counsel, and be advised? Yes.
          Men here stick up their noses, and complain because they are
          required to be subject to counsel. Says one, "I know enough to
          attend to my own business; I don't wish any man to manage for me,
          I cannot endure it; I am too independent." Now you poor
          independent soul: you that are too independent to learn the
          truth; to be taught your duty; what independence have you got? "O
          I have the privilege of moving round in this breathing world as I
          please; and I wont be controlled?" You wont; but I say you will,
          and you are controlled, and that is the very reason you say as
          you say, and do as you do, you are controlled every moment of
          your lives and still you say you are not. You are not
          independent, you never was, and you never will be. That being
          does not exist within the range of man's history. The very
          principles upon which we exist make us the objects of dependence.
          I know the history of that independent man. What is it? It is the
          history of every man that comes into the world. Man comes into
          the world a beggar, naked, destitute, and the veriest specimen of
          dependence and poverty that ever was laid out on the stage of
          human existence? Could he help himself, cloth his nakedness? No.
          The very first thing he needed, when he looked upon this earth,
          he had to borrow from the atmosphere that God had provided for
          him before he came here.
          And had it not been for the provisions of his great benefactor,
          he would have been born only to perish in the morning of his
          days. Such is the man who tells us he is independent. He is too
          independent to be taught and instructed. I say what did he know,
          or what could he do in the days of his infancy? The veriest
          crawling insect that wiggles its way along through the dust of
          the earth was as independent as he, and had more help for itself.
          Talk about independence; he has forgot that he was born, and that
          is the difficulty. He is not only ignorant of the truth, but he
          has been shutting his eyes against it all the time, since he has
          been in the world.
          He has forgot he was born naked and helpless. I suppose he thinks
          he was born in silken robes, when he does think about it, because
          he may, perchance, have worn them ever since. I don't know but he
          thinks he was born in the jewelry that bedecks his body since he
          has been on the earth, or, as the old saying has it, with a
          silver spoon in his mouth.
          He is independent, he says. What does he do in the first place?
          He had to be cradled in helplessness, and cared for. It is to a
          mother's anxiety and tender care he is indebted for his life, for
          the perpetuity of his being on the earth. When he became of
          sufficient age to draw his nourishment, and means to sustain his
          being from other sources, he ate the bread that the earth
          produced--that was here before him--he had no hand in preparing
          it, he eats it, enjoys the blessing flowing from it, and still
          looks up to heaven, and like Nebuchadnezzar of old exclaims, "I
          have made all these things," he is so independent.
          Supposing there had been no earth to have produced bread for his
          nourishment, how could he have lived? Supposing there had been no
          hand that had tilled the earth, and produced bread as the result
          of labor. He was not able to travel abroad to find it, and could
          not manufacture it. He is dependent all the time. Here we find
          him clad in fine robes, enjoying the place his fellows occupied,
          and men on the right hand, and on the left that go at his
          bidding, and come at his call.
          But what could he do, supposing they were not there, and he the
          only tenant of this wide world? How much could he accomplish in
          providing means for his enjoyment? Who would be his farmer, his
          gardener, or his mechanic? Who would build his palace, serve him,
          and administer to his wants? Nobody. He would be poor, destitute,
          naked, without a house in which to dwell, destitute of the
          blessings of association, and kind attention of friends.
          Still he says, he is independent. If he is, let him live alone;
          and when he has lived alone six months, he will be apt to come to
          his senses, if he has bread enough to keep him until then.
          At the end of that time he would be wishing for the society of
          the negro baboon, or anything at all like the human form. He
          would hunger and thirst for an association with his fellow being;
          he would find himself wretched without it, and he would exclaim
          like Nebuchadnezzar in the bitterness of his soul, "God is great
          and good."
          Jesus Christ never declared his independence at all. He said he
          came into the world--on his own business? No, but he came to do
          the will of his Father. In this we have an example of what we
          should seek for, and how we should value the principles we should
          cherish within us. The truth is before us, and it is for us to
          learn it. This is the great key to our happiness; and when we
          have learned all the truth, we shall get all our salvation. That
          which does not learn us the truth does not bestow salvation on
          us; it is that which learns us the truth, and enables us to
          comprehend it, which is salvation to us.
          I do not care how it is gained, or where it is found, whether at
          our labor, or in our moments of rest, and hours of reflection,
          study, and contemplation. The voice of truth is everywhere. It is
          but the voice of that Holy Spirit that was to do--what? To lead
          you and me, and all others who have covenanted with God to keep
          His commandments, into all truth.
               How much of a teacher is that Holy Spirit? What is its
          capacity? The capacity it is obliged to have; unless there is a
          falsehood connected with the declaration to do what it promises
          to do. What is that? Not to lead me into a portion of the truth,
          and then stop until it has learned the balance, but to lead me
          into all truth. That is what is promised, and what is declared to
          be the office of the Holy Spirit.
          Can you think of a principle that is universal, and infinite in
          its extent; there being no space that is not filled with it; no
          creation that does not owe its existence to its power and
          influence? Think of that, and ask yourselves the question, who is
          it, and what is it that can lead you into all that vast
          infinitude of truth, but that principle.
          Can you have any idea what the Holy Ghost is that is to perform
          this office for you and me, to lead us into all truth; or in
          other words the Holy Spirit? If it leads us into all truth, it
          must itself comprehend all truth, or it could not lead us there.
          When we have this Spirit dwelling in us, to be our constant
          companion, and our instructor, we will grow in grace, and in the
          knowledge of the truth; because it will each day unfold to us new
          treasures of truth; our field of truth will become broader and
          broader, and consequently will embrace more of the facts in
          nature, as they exist to-day, than yesterday; and in this way we
          will add knowledge to knowledge, truth to truth, to make up that
          sum that will constitute us equal to the accomplishment of all
          that is requisite to our happiness, until it may extend to a vast
          illimitable infinitude.
          Now I want you to cultivate and cherish within you a love and
          regard for His Spirit. You have been exhorted again and again, so
          to live, that the Spirit of truth--the Holy Ghost, may dwell
          within you, and be your constant companion. You should cultivate
          that condition of feeling that is congenial with the Holy Spirit.
          You should banish all littleness of soul; and banish all scanty
          meagre conceptions; and learn that the infinitude of truth is
          boundless. And when you have cherished that conception, do not
          calculate there is something else bigger; for there can be
          nothing bigger, than that which is boundless--that fills the
          immensity of space. Why? Simply, because there is no room for
          anything bigger.
          That is the reason why "Mormonism" is bigger than everything
          else. Now go to work and apostatize, will you, you poor,
          independent class of Latter-day Saints. But where will you go to,
          for you cannot get beyond the range of "Mormonism," if you die
          and go to hell?
          Old David was satisfied as to this, for he said, "If I take the
          wings of the morning, and fly to the uttermost parts of heaven,
          Thou art there; if I go down to hell, to get out of sight,
          behold, Thou art there." You will apostatize, thinking to find
          something better than "Mormonism." Where does that something
          hang? I would like to see the foundation upon which it is based.
          "Mormonism" extends to boundless infinitude; there is no place
          where it is not; no existence that does not exist by its
          influence and power. If it has life, it is enlivened by it. If it
          possesses light, it is enlightened by it. I will continue with
          "Mormonism;" though I know but little of it, I have learned
          enough to satisfy me that there is no room for anything else. All
          I have to do is to live, and extend my acquaintance with it;
          increase my explorations through its various ramifications.
          I expect to range in them through the vast future of my being,
          gathering knowledge. I never expect to get outside "Mormonism;" I
          have given up the idea long ago of ever apostatizing to get out
          of the way of it.
          I would advise you who have such thoughts to abandon the idea,
          for it is a long journey; you will never get to the end of it.
          After you have fought many hard battles against the rights of
          truth and its convictions, I shall meet you in your wanderings,
          and still find you inside of "Mormonism;" and you will live
          inside of it; I do not care where you go you cannot get rid of
          I would advise you to give up all ideas of apostatizing. Suppose
          you wake up from your slumbers, and try my plan of getting a
          thorough knowledge of the truth. Suppose you try it for twenty
          years; be faithful to God, deal honestly with yourselves and your
          neighbor that long; love God that long, and cultivate a love of
          the truth that long, and it will effect quite a chance in you.
          And probably you may be as much attached to the truth, by that
          time, as you are to your tea, coffee, and tobacco; not because
          they loved them when they were born, or had a natural taste for
          them, but because they have loved them ten, twenty, or thirty
          They do not wake up and forget them, nor go into the field, and
          return home and forget them, because the recollection of them is
          fixed by long using them; they have become a principle of their
          life and being, as it were. Do you not wish the plan of salvation
          had become so fixed in you? Would you not be a great deal happier
          than you are now?
          I suppose this is the case with some? I hope so at least. You
          want a love of the truth, which is the only thing that will
          ensure you success as Latter-day Saints, for if you have not the
          love of it in you, you cannot appreciate it; and if you do not
          appreciate it, you would give it away for a little sweet cake, or
          some trifling thing, because the love of it was never fixed in
          your affections.
          When you appreciate the truth so--as it is worth everything you
          can give or exchange for it--then you are secure; and as long as
          you continue to love it, you will not apostatize. But if you
          begin to be discontented, look out or you will apostatize. You
          say, "I like "Mormonism" as well as ever I did, but I do not like
          this country." You tell the truth, I believe, but you never
          believed it firm enough, if you had you would have loved this
          country where duty has called you; or any other country where the
          interest of the cause of truth calls you. Why? Because you
          interest is there; that which you love is there, and the reward
          you seek is there. You ought to have "Mormonism" get fast hold on
          your affections, so as to occupy the entire affections of the
          soul, until the love of the truth is disseminated throughout your
          whole being.
          I want you to watch these things, and not apostatize. It is a bad
          business, and don't do you any good. Stand firmly in the
          covenants you have made, and learn the truth day by day, and gain
          knowledge continually. If I thought there was anything more or
          better than "Mormonism," anything that would do you more good, I
          would talk about it.
          I have not addressed you precisely as I would another people,
          under other circumstances. A great many of you have been a long
          time in "Mormonism" and have had considerable experience in it,
          and again some have had but a few years experience, in which to
          learn and be instructed.
          Well, as Latter-day Saints, you should learn that you are not
          independent, but dependent all the time, that you have the truth
          to learn. You have merely adopted it, and said in your hearts
          that the testimony of the servants of God is true. You may have
          received the manifestations of the Holy Spirit that have borne
          record to you, and brought to your understanding things that were
          promised you. But this is just at the beginning of truth, it is
          yet all before you, you only comprehend but a little of it; you
          simply comprehend the fact, that there is a system of salvation.
          Are you living to-day in the enjoyment of that freedom from
          darkness, doubt, and dubiety that is only the result of a perfect
          comprehension of truth, that satisfies the soul, and relives it
          of all its anxieties and cares? Are you enjoying that to-day? Do
          you fully understand the principles of "Mormonism?" When you
          speak honestly, you will tell me you do not.
          Seek to learn them. This is the duty which lies before you; your
          future labor consists in this. You have been baptized for the
          remission of sins, as a sign of the covenant you have made, that
          you would put off the old man and his deeds; that you would die
          according to the rudiments of the world which influenced your
          former life, and follow the rudiments of Christ.
          Are you growing in grace, and in the knowledge of the truth? Are
          you becoming more and more intelligent? Do you live the truth
          more to-day than last year, last week, or five or ten years ago,
          when you first heard it? Do you comprehend more of it? If you do
          not, you are not growing in grace, and in the knowledge of God,
          and of the truth.
          Obey the Word of Wisdom. "Do you mean I shall not drink tea, or
          coffee?" I do not care whether you do or not. I do not consider
          that you obey the Word of Wisdom, simply, because you do not
          drink tea and coffee. May be you cannot get it. I have seen the
          time that I drank it when it was hard to get, and when I did not
          use it, when I could have got it.
          Do not work yourselves to death, but try to live a long time, and
          learn to run and not weary, walk and not faint. Do you think of
          leaving off tea and coffee, alone, will enable you to scale the
          mountains, and outstrip the mountain goat in fleetness. It is
          just as true that weariness is the consequence of excessive toil
          as that God lives and reigns. It is manifest in you and me, and
          in every other part of His work. Keep the Word of Wisdom; and if
          you want to run and not weary, walk and not faint, call upon me
          and I will tell you how--just stop before you get tired.
          The Word of Wisdom was given for a principle, with promise; as a
          rule of conduct, that should enable the people so to economize
          their time, and manage and control themselves, as not to eat and
          drink to excess, or use that which is hurtful to them; that they
          should be temperate in all things, in the exercise of labor, as
          well as in eating and drinking. Clothe yourselves properly if you
          can. Exercise properly if you can, and do right in everything.
          Do not stay the work of improvement and reform to pay attention
          to small things that are beneath your notice, but let it extend
          through the entire circle of your being, let it reach every
          relationship in life, and every avocation and duty embraced
          within your existence.
          Let it affect your thinking, and the feelings which you
          cultivate, and let there be nothing pertaining to your being but
          what shall be influenced by it. The Word of Wisdom would itself
          save you, if you would only keep it, in the true sense and spirit
          of it, comprehending the purpose for which it was given.
          It reaches everything that affects your happiness. Go on then and
          observe the Word of Wisdom. What does wisdom tell you? Let tea
          and coffee alone, and abstain from that which would overtax the
          strength of your system, and favor the innovations of disease,
          and shorten your lives, and thereby limit the extent of your
          Study to save yourselves. That which saves your life, and
          lengthens out your days is salvation. And that which fills out
          your days with the perpetration of good is salvation--it helps to
          make up the sum of your salvation.
          I want you to look at it in this point of view, and be influenced
          by the spirit of truth, foster it within the fountains of your
          feelings, and it will give a good character to your conduct.
          This will be living your religion every day, in every thing you
          do; you will have nothing to do outside of your religion.
          Now that you may have wisdom to adopt this course of life, and
          live to enjoy the blessings that will accrue from its adoption,
          is my payer in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Parley
          P. Pratt, August 26, 1855
                          Parley P. Pratt, August 26, 1855
                         THE FIRST PRINCIPLES OF THE GOSPEL.
           A Discourse by Elder Parley P. Pratt, Delivered in the Bowery, 
                       Great Salt Lake City, August 26, 1855.
          I rise before you this morning, my friends and brethren, to
          preach to you the everlasting Gospel, for as my calling has been
          for the last quarter of a century to proclaim this Gospel, I have
          always endeavoured to do my duty both before you and others, here
          and in many other places.
          Before I came here this morning, I was thinking, what shall I say
          to the brethren and sisters, if called upon to speak, and after a
          moment's reflection, I said, I will preach the Gospel, and when
          brother kimball called upon me to address you, he said, "Brother
          Parley, we want you to preach the Gospel to us."
          The Gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is the only system
          whereby man can be saved, and his being the only name whereby we
          can approach our Father in heaven with acceptance, the only name
          in which remissions of sins can be obtained, and the only name
          whereby man can have power over unclean spirits, over devils,
          over diseases, over the elements, and over everything this side
          the celestial kingdom, and its influences, it is of the highest
          importance, therefore, that this message of life should be
          declared to all the world.
          This Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was once born in Bethlehem,
          crucified on Calvary, risen again form the dead, and having
          ascended to his Father and to our Father to lead captivity
          captive, and give gifts unto men, his name has become the only
          name under heaven through which man may be saved--receive
          everlasting life and exaltation. It is the only name by which man
          can get remission of sins, the gift of the Holy Spirit, and all
          its attendant blessings. It is the only name by which we may
          approach our Father in heaven and invoke His blessings--the only
          name by which we may control disease, and the very elements, by
          the power of His Spirit and the authority of His Priesthood.
          This same Jesus, after having risen from the dead, after having
          received all power in heaven and on the earth, gave a mission to
          his Apostles, Peter and others, to go into all the world, preach
          the Gospel to every creature, baptize them in the name of the
          Father, Son, and of the Holy Ghost, and gave commandments that
          repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name,
          in all the world, beginning at Jerusalem.
          Having given these commandments, and instructed his Apostles that
          they should teach all things whatsoever he commanded, he ascended
          up on high, and took his seat upon the right hand of God his
          Father, and he then shed forth the gift of the Holy Ghost, and
          bestowed gifts upon men.
          Those Apostles began at Jerusalem to perform the duties of their
          mission, for it had been said that they should tarry there until
          they were endowed with power from on high; and after receiving
          this power they stood forth and preached to the people, on the
          day of Pentecost, the crucified and risen Redeemer, and when the
          people were convinced of the death and resurrection of the
          Messiah, and wished to know what to do to get rid of their sins,
          and become acceptable in the sight of heaven, Peter told them to
          repent and be baptized, every one of them, in the name of Jesus
          Christ for the remission of sins, and he then added, "For the
          promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are
          afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call."
          This being written in the 2nd chapter of the Acts of the
          Apostles, in the New Testament, as the first instructions given
          by Peter and the Apostles, at the place appointed, and at the
          time appointed, and under the circumstances appointed, and this
          being the first attempt to carry out the great mission--"to
          preach the Gospel to the world," hence we conclude that the
          Gospel there preached was the same Gospel that was to be preached
          in all the world, and that was to be efficacious to all the
          world, it mattered not what color or country, what nation or
          language, learned or unlearned, Hindoo or anything else, it was
          the everlasting Gospel given by the Savior, at the place
          appointed, and at the time appointed, when they were endowed with
          power from on high, the Holy Ghost descending upon them agreeably
          to the promise.
          Consequently, at that time and under those circumstances, which I
          have briefly named, the Apostles made that proclamation, viz.,
          that all should repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus
          Christ for the remission of sins; and they were told that all who
          would do this, should receive the remission of sins, and that the
          Gospel, with its promises, should go to every creature; and
          whether in some distant age or country that mankind should be
          found, it mattered not; there the Lord should send His Gospel
          with the promise of remission of sins, and the gift of the Holy
          Ghost, though obedience to the Gospel. Yes, in every place and
          among all people the promises should hold good, and the sings
          follow them that believe.
          This Gospel, its history, and characteristics, are clearly
          recorded in the New Testament, in the english version, translated
          by the order of King James, and handed down to us by our fathers;
          and it is also given to us by our fathers, in the Book of Mormon,
          and in many other good books, and in the words of many other good
          men who lived in ancient times, and in the words of many modern
          men, and many of our young men are made partakers of it by
          becoming members of the Church of Christ, and they know what it
          is to become members of the body of Christ, and to be justified,
          freed from sin, and to stand before God with clean hearts and
          pure minds.
          We have to know these things, and to be made sensible of what it
          is to feel the satisfying influence of His Holy Spirit.
          Mind you do not forget, when we preach this Gospel, that it is a
          Gospel of repentance; do not slip over part of it, but while
          summing it up, look at it item by item. It is the Gospel of
          repentance, not a mere Gospel of baptism, but a Gospel of
          repentance, and remission of sins, to be preached in all the
          Why have any people a notion or disposition to obey this Gospel?
          How can the people determine whether this Gospel is good, whether
          it is of any value to them, or what it will do for the people
          generally if complied with? What would this Gospel do for the
          people of any age if they would obey it as a people? Whether it
          were a neighborhood, a town, a city, a nation, or a world, or a
          million of worlds, I ask what would it do for that neighborhood,
          that people, that city, that nation, or that world? I will tell
          you. There would be no thieving there any longer, there would be
          no lying there any longer, no cheating, no deceiving, no
          intentional breaking of promises, no wrong dealing, no extortion,
          no hatred, no envy, and no evil speaking. But why would all these
          things cease? Simply because they obeyed the Gospel; because
          obedience to the Gospel implies repentance, which means nothing
          more nor less than putting away all our evils, and ceasing to do
          them. Among the people that obeyed the Gospel there would be no
          longer adulterers, nor fornicators, nor any other evil that you
          can name. 
          Now what cause of objection can people have in any age, among any
          nation or language--in England or in Texas, or any where else, to
          a Gospel that would have a tendency to put away all those evils
          from among men? But, say you, "Are there no evils where this
          Gospel is obeyed?" No sir; where this Gospel prevails in the
          heart of an individual, that individual ceases from those things
          which are evil, for he is cleansed from them; he refrains from
          all that tends to evil. As the Gospel influences a man's heart,
          he ceases to countenance all evil practices, and where the Gospel
          influences his family, there is a family without those evils, and
          if a town or a city can be found that is influenced by the
          Gospel, there you will find a town or city without those evils
          which I have named, and you will find them gradually putting away
          those which may be amongst them, as fast as they perceive them.
          "But really," says one, "in Utah, I thought the Gospel was pretty
          well obeyed, and yet we are not without those evils, we are not
          entirely free from those sins." Allowing such to be the case,
          that does not make these words false. Show me a man that is
          guilty of false swearing, a man that is found traducing his
          brethren, or that is found evil speaking, or that is a fornicator
          or a thief, and I will show you a man that does not obey the
          Gospel; he may call himself a "Mormon," a Latter-day Saint, or a
          brother in Christ, but that is not proving that he has repented
          of his sins, but as repentance is a part and parcel of the
          everlasting Gospel of Jesus Christ, and without which we cannot
          be benefitted by his atonement and his mercy, we cannot have the
          blessings he purchased without we associate repentance with our
          faith. I say, as repentance is an essential part of the Gospel,
          that the man who has not put away his sins has deceived himself,
          because this repentance is one of the first principles of
          salvation. If I have other sins, and then add the sin of
          neglecting repentance, my case is still worse than it was before.
               I have known the Gospel, as I remarked, for 25 years, and in
          that time I have materially altered my views upon some points. I
          then thought that they came into the Church for the purpose of
          repenting and forsaking their evils, and receiving the Gospel
          with all their hearts and with a resolution to do right. Well, it
          is true that there is a oneness, as far as repentance and faith
          is concerned, in the outward acknowledgment, but do all who in
          word acknowledge the Gospel forsake their sins? We would all like
          to see such a state of things in the world, we would like to see
          our neighbors forsaking their sins, even if we could not forsake
          and overcome our own dear sins. Suppose we happen to repent and
          leave off our sins, would not that be about right? Would not that
          answer for us without waiting for others? Or can we have some
          ceremony performed that will do as well, something besides
          leaving off our sins and leading a new life?
          Perhaps we may not come to the repentance of fear, or feel afraid
          of doing wrong, but the other part we will come to, says one,
          "For instance the baptism for the remission of sins given by the
          Savior, in whose name we can receive every good gift, and without
          whose name we cannot receive any spiritual gift." Then seeing
          that he, with all this power in his hands, and he, knowing all
          things that would be good for man, not only ordered that
          repentance should be preached in his name, but that the Apostles
          should baptize the people in his name, and to fulfil this mission
          they did baptize the penitent believer for the remission of sins;
          and they exhorted the people, every one of them, to repent and
          obey this ordinance for the remission of sins; and they also
          assured them that if they would do so they should have the gift
          of the Holy Ghost; and the Apostles further assured them that
          this promise was to them that were afar off, to all nations and
          countries--it extended to every creature.
          And now, what objection can a man have to obeying one part more
          than another part of the Gospel? Why should men have such various
          opinions about the gospel when it is so plainly set forth? One
          man says, "I suppose that baptizing or sprinkling me when I was
          an infant was sufficient, for that was the custom in those days,
          and I suppose they called that baptism." Well, have we not shown
          you that repentance was of God, and therefore that all men must
          repent? Jesus Christ did not come to call the righteous, but
          sinners to repentance, and he also commanded his servants to go
          forth testifying to those that were seeking the kingdom of God,
          and gave them power to heal the sick and cast out devils.
          Can little children commit sins? Can they hear the Gospel and
          receive it in their hearts? Can little children reason, think,
          repent, and bring forth fruits meet for the kingdom of God? Can
          little children be instructed to obey the Gospel in their
          infancy? To all these questions every rational man would
          answer--No! Well, then, what have we to do with the Gospel as it
          pertains to little children? We are willing to carry out the
          instructions of the Savior where we are told to bless them, and
          this we are willing to do wherever we see them, and to pray for
          them, but to sinners that are sufficiently grown to be free to
          act for themselves--persons who are sufficiently grown to be
          accountable before the Almighty, and to be capable of conceiving
          sin in their hearts, and of bringing forth the fruits of it, to
          such was repentance and baptism, and therefore the Gospel could
          never be applied to little infants; it was a Gospel of voluntary
          obedience, and therefore it could not apply to the infant in its
          mother's arms.
               Go and "teach" all nations, and baptize the people; not the
          teaching to "follow" baptism, but teach them to observe all the
          things spoken by Jesus. Well, now, if you baptize a little
          infant, then remember to tell it all the things; teach it, then
          baptize, after which, you must teach it to observe all things.
          But you see it wont require a dead form to carry out the Gospel
          of Christ, but an infant could not ask, what is the word? Persons
          have been used to trust to a dead form and have their children
          sprinkled, but if any of you were sprinkled, it was at a time
          when you could not help yourself, and hence you do not know
          anything about it, only, that you have been told that somebody
          sprinkled you when an infant.
          Then, notwithstanding your infant sprinkling, you never obeyed
          the Gospel because it was a Gospel of repentance, and is to be so
          when carried to all whom the Lord our God shall call. The Gospel,
          which we have to preach, is a Gospel of repentance and of
          remission of sins, to every one that will obey it, including a
          baptism, a voluntary baptism, which is applicable to all the
          truly obedient, in every nation, who are determined to lead a new
          life, and bring forth fruit meet for repentance, and what was it?
          The Apostle, in the New Testament, informs us that it was to be
          buried with Christ by baptism into his death, and rise to newness
          of life in the likeness of his resurrection.
          In my travels abroad, I sometimes meet, among many others,
          members of the church of Rome, so called; I believe they call
          themselves such. I say to them, "Are you sure there was such a
          church as that in the days of the Apostles, and that you are
          members of that church?" "If there was such a church," says I,
          "it is spoken of in the New Testament. Well, are you sure that
          you are a member of the church of Rome that is spoken of as
          having grown and swelled and perpetuated itself? How have you
          become such?" "By being baptized," is the answer. "Then you would
          think an unbaptized person was not a member of that church?"
          "Yes, we would consider all such persons aliens."
          "Well, then, I will convince you that you are not a legal member
          in the church of Rome, baptism being the initiatory right into
          that church." "How will you do it," Says he, "Because the Apostle
          in his epistle gives instructions and directions how every member
          was initiated into the Church, that was established by himself at
          Rome. He says that "As many of you as have been baptized into
          Christ have put on Christ, and if ye have put on Christ, then are
          ye Christ's."
          "He also says, 'Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized
          into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death? Therefore we are
          buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was
          raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we
          also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted
          together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the
          likeness of his resurrection: knowing this, that our old man is
          crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that
          henceforth we should not serve sin'" Romans, chapter 6.
          "Now," says I, "remember that every one of your members of the
          Church of Rome have been buried with Christ by baptism into
          death, and hence you must have risen to newness of life in the
          likeness of his resurrection. So writes the Apostle to the true
          Church of Rome, and you will find it in the New Testament, as
          before stated."
          "Now then," says I, "you have acknowledged that no man is a
          member of the Church of Rome, unless he has been baptized, and
          the Apostle himself says that 'every member of the Church of Rome
          has been buried with Christ by baptism, and has risen again from
          that grave into the likeness of his resurrection.' Were, Sirs,
          were you buried with him, and when did you rise from that grave
          in the likeness of his death and resurrection? And have you ever
          led a new life, avoiding this sin and the other which you before
          were guilty of?"
          "Well," says the professor of Roman religion, "You have got us in
          a curious position, I must acknowledge; I will have to give it
          up, for that is true; it is the written word of an Apostle of
          God. I have never become a member of the Church of Rome, and am
          consequently an heathen, according to the views of the Roman
          Catholic Church."
          I have conversed with men who have come out as honestly as men
          could in their positions. Members of the Catholic Church have
          come out as honestly as I have stated, and said that they must
          give up, but the Protestants are very tenacious, and will stick
          to their creed, often in spite of reason. I presume they are like
          all men in reference to tenacity, they would stick to their oath,
          that, if possible, they might gain converts to their faith.
          The question is often asked, "Are there any honest people among
          this sect, and the other party?" I tell you there are honest men
          in every sect of religionists, and if you try to classify men,
          you will have a difficult job, for you will find honest men in
          this class and the other, and, in fact, among all classes and
          sects of men.
          You need not suppose that honesty depends upon our traditions, or
          upon where a man was born; but there are honest people in every
          community, and in every sect under heaven, and there are those
          that hate the truth, and that would not aid in the spread of
          light and truth, no lend their influence to any servant of God
          under the heavens.
          Well now, I love a man without regard to his country, or where he
          was brought up, without reference to color or nation. I love a
          man that loves the truth, and I do not blame any man under heaven
          for having been born and brought up in any particular town, city,
          or nation. You might as well blame a man for being brought up
          under certain traditions, in countries where they have not had
          the opportunity of discoursing with others, no discussions, no
          free press, where they never could know anything else but
          tradition through life.
          You might as well blame them for their country as for their
          traditions. Circumstances might come round, and so order the
          course of a man's mind and his mission as to give him a new
          channel of thought, and prevent his making any distinction, as it
          was with the Apostle Peter.
          There are whole nations, and generations of them, that have lived
          and died with the same knowledge right before their eyes, and
          that without the opportunity of thinking of any other degrees of
          knowledge. Well, what did Peter do with regard to those he was
          called to visit and preach to? When he preached the Gospel under
          the instructions of a risen Jesus, when he undertook to preach
          the Gospel--repentance, baptism, and the laying on of hands for
          the gifts of the Holy Ghost, he said, "The promise is to you;"
          meaning that present generation, and he thought a little more,
          and then said," It is to your children:" meaning the next
          generation, and finally his heart enlarged a little further, by
          the Holy Ghost that was in him and he uttered its dictation, "To
          all that are afar off;" and then he happened to think that they
          might count those that had been brought up in some other country,
          with different tradition, and he limited a little, and said,
          "Even to as many as the Lord our God shall call."
          Although the mind of Peter was liable to be too contracted, he
          knew one thing, viz., that the Lord their God was in the habit of
          communicating with the people, and he understood that He always
          would be, for he knew that God Lived, and he also knew that the
          Lord Jesus Christ was alive, for he had seen and talked with him,
          and had handled him, and he had seen him ascend up on high; and
          he had heard him testify that he had all power given him in
          heaven and in earth, and he knew that he would have power to send
          the Gospel to every creature, for he had the keys to send the
          Gospel wherever he pleased, to all tribes, nations, and
          languages, in worlds without end, therefore when he made the
          promise he only limited it, or gave it a certain jurisdiction,
          recollecting where it belonged.
          The promise he gave of the Holy Ghost was to all that are afar
          off, to those whom the Lord our God shall call. To express it in
          language more appropriate than any other, perhaps, the promise of
          the Holy Ghost is, to wherever the Lord sends forth a revelation,
          wherever He makes proclamation of the Gospel, wherever He
          commissions men and sends forth the keys of the kingdom of God,
          and authorizes men to administer those ordinances in His name. It
          matters not whether in Judea, or America, or whether it be in
          Samaria, or England, whether to the heathen, the Jew, or the
          refined philosopher. It matters not whether we apply it to
          ancient days or modern times, wherever the Almighty God or Jesus
          Christ His Son, sees fit to reveal the fulness of the Gospel, and
          the keys of the eternal Priesthood, and the ministration of
          angels, there the promise contained in the Gospel was to hold
          good; and the nation or people obeying that call should receive
          remission of sins in his name, in obedience to his Gospel, and be
          filled with the Holy Spirit of Promise--the Holy Ghost, which is
          the gift of prophecy and revelation, and also includes many other
          Is that Gospel any less true because it was revealed to Mormon,
          and was preached by him? Is that truth any less true because it
          has been hid up in the earth, inscribed upon plates, and has come
          forth and been translated in this age of the world? Was not that
          Gospel as good when preached to the Nephites in America, as it
          was when preached to the Jews in Palestine?
          And if as good why not write it? And if good enough to be
          preached and written, why not have those writings and read them,
          and rejoice in the spirit and truths they contain?
          Rejoice because it swells the heart, expands the mind, gives a
          more enlarged view of God's dealings and mercies, shows them to
          be extended to all extent, published in different countries, and
          upon different continents, revealed to one nation as well as
          another; in short, it gives a man that feeling when he
          contemplates the bearing and extent of that Gospel; it gives a
          man a feeling which affords joy and satisfaction to the soul; it
          give a man that feeling which angels had when they sung in the
          ears of the shepherds of Judea--"We bring you glad tidings of
          great joy"--which shall be in a few countries, and to a few
          people? No, that was not the song, though they were singing to
          those who had a few traditions in their families, which they had
          received from their forefathers.
          The shepherds were astonished, and well they might be, and they
          brought every body to this text throughout the whole of Judea.
          Still those angels were honest enough to sing the whole truth,
          notwithstanding the Jews looked upon all Gentiles as dogs, and I
          think I hear the shepherds saying, that brought glad tidings to
          every body--"To these dogs?" Still the angels--a choir of
          them--were bold enough to sing, "We bring you glad tidings of
          great joy, which shall be to all people!"
          What a big saying for Jewish shepherds! Why they must have
          enlarged their hearts, and wondered at this very strange news!
          Why Peter had hardly got his heart sufficiently enlarged to
          believe these glad tidings, many years after they were
          proclaimed, although he had preached so much.
          It swelled by degrees, and contracted again, I suppose, and at
          last he had to have a vision, and a sheet let down from heaven,
          and things shown him, and explained to him over and over again,
          to get him to realize the truth of the glad tidings sung by
          angels at the birth of the Savior.
          It was showing so much, it was too broad a platform, such a
          boundless ocean of mercy! It was making such a provision for the
          human family that Peter could not comprehend it. If the angel had
          said it was for the Jews, for the peculiar people of god, those
          that could receive the new revelation, why then it might have
          done; but to throw off their traditions, they who were the
          peculiar few, as they considered themselves, to believe that the
          glad tidings of the Savior's birth was for those Gentile dogs,
          they could not endure this for a moment. They were of the house
          of Israel, the seed of promise.
          This was indeed a peculiar vision, bringing the glad tidings of
          the Savior's birth--for that was the peculiar mission of those
          angels--hence they did not bring the Gospel, they did not say
          anything about baptism, nor repentance, nor remission of sins,
          but they simply brought glad tidings of it. They announced the
          fact that a Savior was born at such a date and place, told the
          birth place and events of a Savior being born in Bethlehem, under
          the circumstances named at that time, and declared that this
          news, this glad tidings, should go to all people.
          What was the result? Why it went through Judea; it was sounded
          through Samaria; it went to Rome and to Greece; it went to
          Ethiopia; it went to the uttermost parts of the earth; it soon
          bounded over the sea; the angels of God that sung that song could
          never contradict their words. If then they had to carry it over
          the seas, to every country and continent where the seed of
          promise was, they were bound to fulfil that mission, and they
          swiftly flew to America, and proclaimed the glad tidings there.
          They found the people there shut out by a cloud of darkness, from
          the light of truth. They found a people there called the Nephites
          and Lamanites who were a branch of the house of Israel, that were
          cast off, or rather brought over the great waters from their
          country, and they bore the glad tidings to them, (you have read
          it in the Book of Nephi) and they informed them that at such a
          time and place the Savior was born.
          By and by the Savior himself came over here, and told it to the
          people; but this was after his resurrection, for the work was too
          much, and the field too large for his mortal life; for he had but
          a few years to preach the Gospel to the Jews, and part of that
          short life of 33 years was he a child--a boy, and hence, he had
          to be limited to that country where he had a mortal body, and
          could be borne by the mountain waves that might separate one
          country from another. But after his resurrection, he was as
          independent of the waves and mountains as he was of those who
          crucified him; for then he could rise above their power; he was
          able to pass from planet to planet with perfect ease; he was as
          able to ascend up and go from continent to continent; he was as
          able to ascend to his God, and to our God, as he was to appear to
          his disciples.
          I say, Jesus could not be held in Palestine; the mountains, nor
          the rolling seas had not power to stay his progress, for he had
          told his disciples, while he was yet living, that he had other
          sheep which were not of that fold, and, said he, "They shall hear
          my voice."
          In fulfilment of this, and according to the nature of his grand
          commission, the Saviour of the whole world, not half of it, in
          his glorified body, showed himself to the Nephites in America,
          and bestowed upon them the Priesthood, with all its gifts and
          qualifications--that same glorious Gospel that he had just before
          given to his Prophets and Apostles at Jerusalem--and he told
          those whom he selected to hold the Priesthood upon this
          continent, to go forth and preach the same glad tidings of
          salvation to all their world, fulfilling in part the words of
          Peter, "For the promise is to all that are afar off."
          And Jesus called to those Nephites, when he descended, and they
          fell at his feet, as many as could get near him, and they bathed
          his feet in their teas, and they examined his wounds, and heard
          the gracious words of his mouth, and they saw him ascend, and
          descend again, and they felt so large in their charity and
          affections, and the light of truth was so large and extended in
          its benefits, and benevolence, and the testimony so strong, that
          they feasted upon the blessings that were bestowed, and he then
          commanded them to write his sayings, and an account of the
          miracles he wrought among them.
          They did this as he commanded, and they liked the writings so
          well that they handed them down to each succeeding Prophet, until
          Mormon, who was born three or four ages afterwards; and he could
          not hand those sacred records down any further because of
          apostacy, and the blasphemy and wickedness of the people, and
          because of the wars and troubles that spread among the people; so
          he made a secret deposit of those writings, and put them in the
          earth, and he also wrote a book and called it the "Book of
          Mormon," which was an abridgment of the other records, and this
          was hid up to the Lord, and through the interference of the
          Almighty a young man, Joseph Smith, by the gift and power of
          God--I say, through that young man, and the ministration of holy
          angels to him, that book came forth to the world, and it has
          since that time been preached and read in our language, and many
          others, and we rejoice in it, and have borne testimony of it in
          the world.
          It is though that blessed Book of Mormon, with that blessed
          Gospel in it, that we have the testimony which we have in
          reference to the death and resurrection of the Savior of men.
          It is true, as recorded in the Book of Mormon, and as preached
          upon this continent, and it is true as written in the New
          Testament, and as it was preached to the Jews in Jerusalem, and
          as preached to the Ten Tribes, though we have not got their
          record yet, but we will have it, and we shall find that the
          blessed Jesus revealed to them the Gospel, and that they rejoiced
          in it.
          And their record will come so that we will know of a surety, and
          of a truth, that they had the everlasting Gospel as well as their
          brethren in Jerusalem, and upon this continent.
          When these things come to pass we will have three ancient
          records, delivered in three different countries. We have in the
          Old and New Testaments, and the Book of Mormon, and other good
          books, all we at present require.
          We shall eventually have the history of the Ten Tribes in the
          north, of the Nephites in America, and of the Jews in Jerusalem,
          and their written testimony will become one, and their words will
          become one, and the people of God will be gathered, under
          testimony, into one body, and the testimony of the Latter-day
          Saints will become one with that of the Former-day-Saints, (and
          it is now so far as it goes) and the testimonies of those shall
          sweep the earth as with a flood, and by the voice of men and
          angels, and eventually by the great sound of a trumpet, and none
          shall escape.
          Prior to this great destruction, the everlasting Gospel will be
          taught to them by the servants of God, by the testimony of men
          and angels, and by the testimony of Jesus Christ, and by the
          testimony of ancient and modern Prophets; by the testimony of
          Joseph Smith, and of the Apostles ordained by him, and by the
          testimony of ancient and modern Saints; by the testimony of the
          Ten Tribes; by the testimony of heaven and the testimony of
          earth; then shall the wicked be sent to their own place, and
          truth shall be established in the earth; and the voice of joy and
          gladness shall be heard with the meek of the earth.
          Those that forsake their sins shall have abundant cause to
          rejoice with those that love the truth, and are made pure in
          heart by it.
          Joy and gladness shall be heard, and there shall be glad tidings
          to all the meek, and to all the pure in heart; to all that love
          instruction; to all that will not harden their hearts; to all the
          sinners that will be obedient and refrain from their sins, and
          live a holy life.
          The cry will no longer go forth, "They will not repent and be
          converted, that I may heal them;" for the Lord God, the blessed
          Savior, who is full of virtue, power, and love, and healing, with
          his Priesthood will bless them, and they will find comfort, for
          he will heal them.
          From the fact that Jesus complains of a people that will not be
          converted, lest he might heal them, we would conclude from that,
          that conversion was a condition of the healing power. Why, says
          he, "They will not turn from their sins and be converted, that I
          may heal them." But when they are concerted and grown up into
          one, the day of his power comes, and then says he, "They are
          converted, and I will heal them."
          Don't you see that he came to the Nephites (you have read it in
          the Book of Mormon), and he said, "Bring forth your halt, and
          blind, and dumb, and I will heal them, for I see your faith is
          sufficient and I will heal them all:" and he healed them every
          one as they were brought to him. That day of general healing came
          to them, for the more wicked part of the inhabitants had been cut
          off, and I would to God that that day would come among us.
          Well, let us be converted, and those that have been converted and
          have held on to it, be converted a little more, for I tell you I
          like conversion pretty often. I don't mean that I like people to
          turn round from the truth and then repent, and say, I am sorry;
          but I mean that a man needs converting to-day, and the next day,
          and the day after, because a man that is progressing learns by
          degrees. To-day he gets to understand that a certain principle or
          practice of his is wrong; and when he finds himself wrong, and
          learns his error, he turns from it; but even then he does not
          understand all things pertaining to right and wrong. He has not
          learned all things that might stand in the way of building up the
          kingdom of God, and hence, he wants or needs to be converted
          to-day, and the next day, and the next, and so on until he is
          converted from all his bad habits, and from his impurities, and
          he becomes just such a man as the Lord delights in.
          And Jesus said, "Be ye as I am, and I am as the Father." He
          contrasts himself and them with the Father, and then says, "What
          manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you such as I am,
          and I am as the Father is."
          It is for this purpose that we came into the world, that we might
          become like the father; and that we may become like Him, we need
          converting every day, or at least until we are free from all
          evil, even if it be five hundred times--not to turn away from the
          truth, but keep going on to perfection.
          We need converting until we feel that indeed the promise of the
          Holy Ghost is "to all that afar off, even to as many as the Lord
          our God shall call." The Lord calls the Jews, the Christians, the
          "Mormons," the Gentiles; He calls the Ten Tribes; and He has
          called us also; God has called brother Joseph, brother Hyrum, and
          brother Brigham, and His Apostles, and the Elders who hold the
          Priesthood in this age, and He calls the people of America and of
          Europe, and the whole human family. Some He calls by His angels,
          and by His own voice out of the heavens. In this way He called
          Joseph and his associates, and revealed to them the fulness of
          the Gospel, put upon them the powers of the eternal Priesthood,
          after the same order as Himself, and told them to go forth and
          call others to assist them.
          They did so, and others obeyed the Gospel; they laid their hands
          upon them, after laid their hands upon them, after they had
          baptized them and confirmed them; and they ordained them to bear
          testimony of their calling, and the restoration of the Gospel in
          its fulness--that a new call had been made to the nations of the
          And it required another call in our day, for Peter had gone the
          way of all the earth, and also his brethren who were his
          contemporaries; and the brethren among the Nephites had gone, or
          had been taken away; and those holding the authority among the
          Ten Tribes had gone the way of all the earth.
          And it was this that brought those glad tidings and those
          messengers to us; and those were the ones that brought the light
          of heaven to our beloved brother Joseph Smith.
          Well, if I have been made a high witness of these things, what
          brought the truth to me? It was through the ministration of
          angels, under whose hands these my brethren have been ordained to
          the holy Priesthood, and it brought down with it the blessings of
          the everlasting Gospel, for it could not be in the world without
          a call; for those who previously held it had gone to another
          The Gospel was revealed to ancient men in different climes and
          countries, whenever there were men to be saved, and it was
          revealed to modern men, because there were modern men to be saved
          by it. The Gospel was to all whom the Lord our God should call,
          in every age and country, and but for this call we would have
          been as blind as bats in the traditions of our fathers, led away
          by divers creeds and by the cunning of men who lie in wait to
          deceive. Where would we have been if it had not been for this
          call? We might have been good men enough, perhaps, but where
          would we have been?
          The introduction of the Gospel was worthy of an angel, yes, the
          errand was worthy of a corps of them--it was worthy of a host of
          them! it was worthy of a God! It was an object of importance that
          called Jesus from the bosom of his Father in the eternal world. A
          call was necessary then; faith was necessary, and faith comes by
          hearing the word of God; and how could you have heard it, if
          nobody had been called to deliver it? We were in the midst of
          darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not. We could see
          revelations given in other ages, but we want them in our age; but
          we wanted a call.
          I am aware that some will be thinking of their grandmothers or
          grandfathers who died in the middle ages, and who died in hope,
          as far as they could get at it. I know they will bequerying all
          the while to know what has become of them.
          Well, it is no matter; it is for us to attend to our own
          business, and see to our own salvation; if we do this, we shall
          have no condemnation. We do not know but as we progress in
          righteousness, that in the provisions made by our great Father,
          we may have to serve them, and to do for those good old fathers
          and mothers of ours, who did see the light afar off, but could
          not come at it for want of a call--for want of a Priesthood,
          which is without beginning of days--and men holding the authority
          of heaven; yes, we may have to do for them what they have not had
          the privilege of doing for themselves.
          Well, what is the provision? Why did I not just name to you, that
          this eternal Priesthood is without beginning of days or end of
          life, after the order of the Son of God? Do you suppose that when
          a man passes beyond the veil, he is any less a Priest? If angels
          or men, by the spirit of prophecy, have laid their hands upon him
          and ordained him to an office in the Priesthood of the Son of
          God, and have given him a call in the name of the Lord to give
          salvation to others, do you suppose that by passing the veil he
          becomes unordained?
          What did Jesus say to the Jews? Says he, "The God of Abraham,
          Isaac, and Jacob, is the God you profess to worship; but," says
          he, " I want you to understand that He is not the God of the
          dead, for what glory would their be in that? But," says he, "he
          is the God of the living." He was speaking to the children of
          Abraham who were dead, as much as to say that Abraham was living
          Well, then, when a man holding the eternal Priesthood passes the
          veil, he still holds his authority, and his heart is full of
          affection and love towards God's creatures, and he is clothed
          with the power of God, and he is His Prophet, Apostle, and Elder.
          It is impossible to keep a man silent who is filled with the
          testimony of Jesus. I would as soon undertake to shut up fire in
          dry shavings, as to shut up in that man's heart the good news,
          for he has his mission, which is to preach the Gospel to those
          that were and are in darkness.
          The good old fathers and mothers who had not the privileges and
          blessings of the Gospel--for instance--go to deliver your message
          to them, that they may come to the light of truth, and be saved.
          The Apostle, when addressing the Saints, says, "But ye have
          obeyed from the heart, that from of doctrine which was delivered
          to you: being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of
          righteousness." Rom. vi. 17 and 18.
          There was the freedom of obedience to that from of doctrine
          delivered to them. Obedience to that from of doctrine made them
          free, but it did not prevent them from acting as men, in a
          temporal point of view.
          The Apostle also speaks of passing from death unto life, because
          they loved the brethren. Passing the veil does not alter a man;
          it certainly takes him from the eyes of flesh, but the capacity,
          the intelligence, the thinking powers, are all alive and quick;
          and if they hear the Gospel, they will be glad, and the promises
          are made to them, and they will rejoice in them.
          Let a man pass the veil with the everlasting Priesthood, having
          magnified it to the day of his death, and you cannot get it off
          him; it will remain with him in the world of spirits; and when he
          wakes up in that world among the spirits, he has that power, and
          that obligation on him, that if he can find a person worthy of
          salvation, why, as soon as he ascertains that, and he remembers
          what he may teach and who he may teach, he then discovers that he
          has got a mission, and that mission is to those souls who had not
          the privilege which we have in this world, that they may be
          partakers of the Gospel as well as we.
          And herein, when fully carried out, are the keys of the "baptism
          for the dead," and the salvation of those not on the earth, a
          subject into which I need not now enter, although it is among the
          first principles of salvation; but they are so lengthy that we
          cannot dwell upon them all at one time.
          But suffice it to say, that when the Lord made provision that
          there should be one name by which man should be saved; and when
          He planned glad tidings of great joy to go over the islands and
          continents, and to the four quarters of the earth, He also
          remembered the spirits in prison, and He made provision wide as
          eternity, that it might reach the case of "every creature," under
          every circumstance that could arise within the reach of mercy.
          He so ordered it, that "all manner of sins and blasphemies, in
          due time, might be forgiven, except that which could not be
          justly forgiven in this world, nor in that which is to come."
          The plan was so devised that every man might have repentance and
          remission of sins, and the gift of the Holy Ghost, in his time
          and in his place, if he would; but if he would not, very well
          then, he might do as he pleased, whether in this world or any
          other, according to the clear freedom that he lives under.
          You know you cannot compel one of the dumb animals to drink; you
          can lead him to the water, direct his attention to the clear,
          crystal, pure stream, but still he may die of thirst. And men may
          die because they will not leave off their sins, and lay hold of
          the cross; and if they will die of thirst, and will not lay hold
          of the salvation offered by a bleeding Savior, they may die the
          death of the wicked.
          And if, because they will not give up their freedom to do right,
          they can go; they will die to all eternity, and never be
          compelled to obey the truth.
          Well, friends, here is the Gospel; and where is the man's heart
          so hard that he will not see and embrace it? A man must be
          hardened in wickedness, that will not abide the law of the
          Gospel. And that portion of you who have not obeyed, my
          invitation is to you all; and all of you in the Church, who have
          not obeyed the Gospel in its fulness, see that you obey it in its
          fulness; I mean, to every day, attend to the repentance part of
          it--the leaving off part--forsaking your evils--the conversion
          part, and bring forth fruits suited to a new life.
          I will have to be judged for my preaching, and you for your
          hearing. I shall be pretty careful for myself; I can do that, I
          think. I shall look into things, prepare my mind to discern
          between the right and the wrong; otherwise I might neglect; and
          it will keep a man pretty busy to repent and bring forth fruits
          for a new life. There will be a good deal of watching and
          praying, and he will have to be pretty careful to live so as to
          get the Holy Spirit, so that it will not leave him, and he will
          be, without it, like a fish out of water, or like a person in hot
          weather destitute of pure air. If he once loses the Spirit, after
          having received it, it will keep him pretty busy to get it again.
          That repentance, and that burial in the name of the risen Jesus,
          wants a good deal of humility and perseverance; for there is the
          old man with his deeds to put off, and lay aside, and to walk a
          new life.
          It does not only mean something, but it is shown forth in the
          actions of the man. Well won't that keep a man pretty busy? I
          think it will in such a world as this. Well, in this sense of the
          word the Saints are called upon to obey the Gospel and repent,
          all the while; but we talk of dying unto sin and of walking in
          newness of life. The dying unto sin and rising in the new life,
          and the baptism were to be for a moment, but the stream that
          flows from obedience is perpetual.
          Well, those out of the Church are certainly called upon to obey
          the Gospel; and when people are careless and indifferent
          respecting their duties, then it is that wicked people rise up
          amongst us, and we are then called upon to repent and obey the
          Gospel. I will clear my garments, as far as one day will do it,
          before I sit down. The little children are called upon to obey
          the Gospel, such as are capable of being taught, and they ought
          to be taught by their parents, so that they may understand it by
          the time they are eight years of age. Then they are called upon
          to repent, to understand and bring forth the fruits meet for the
          kingdom of God, and be buried in the likeness of death as Jesus
          was, and then leave off all their foolish and sinful ways, and
          rise out of their watery grave, understanding that Jesus rose
          again from the dead--from his great, and knowing this they should
          then take up their cross. This is a figure to show us that then
          commences a new life.
          Now you folks that have been brought up in the Gospel, in the
          light of heaven, but have been careless or wicked, rise up and
          obey the Gospel, and don't you be baptized without you repent,
          for all you hear of the Gospel and attend to, unless you are as
          humble as a little child, it won't do you any good, and remember
          that it is through the name, and the atoning blood of Jesus
          Christ, that you can have remission of sins, through the
          ordinance of baptism which represents the burial. And those
          people that have not been brought up within this call and
          influence, I say, come and obey it and do not call yourselves
          outsiders and aliens, but fellow heirs to the promises made to
          Abraham, and which were established by him and given to him for
          an everlasting covenant.
          You may suppose that it was a part of the law given to Moses, and
          therefore done away in Christ. Let me tell you that the
          everlasting covenant made with Abraham, and mentioned in the
          Scriptures, was made four hundred and fifty years before the law
          was thundered from Mount Sinai. Separate and apart from the
          Gospel, the law was given to Moses, but not to disannul that
          covenant, and when the Lord Jesus christ came he never disannuled
          it, but commanded his Apostles to preach it. It is much older
          than the law, for it applied before Moses was born and also
          afterwards, and all we have to do is to come into it, and be
          faithful as Abraham was faithful, and then we shall become sons,
          and if sons, the sons of Abraham, and if daughters, the daughters
          of Sarah, because we have embraced the same Gospel and
          principles. And then when we get into heaven with Rachel and
          Leah, they will not be ashamed of us, and what is more we will
          not be ashamed of them. Then we shall be hail fellows well met,
          and we shall sit down in the kingdom of God, and go no more out
          forever. "And many will come from the east and from the west and
          will sit down in the kingdom of God," and unless we are faithful
          we shall be shut out. Therefore I wish you to understand that the
          promises, that are special, will not apply to us, and where they
          go we cannot come, except by adoption.
          May the Lord bless you. Amen.
          I like preaching the Gospel this morning. Before I came here I
          thought, what I shall say if they call on me to speak to-day? And
          the thought came into my mind, I will preach the Gospel, and the
          moment I came Brother Kimball said, "Brother Parley, come preach
          the Gospel to us;" I replied "That is just what I was thinking
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, January 27, 1856
                           Brigham Young, January 27, 1856
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 27, 1856.
          I am thankful for the privilege of again appearing here before
          the brethren and sisters. A few of us have been absent for a
          short time, and, in our absence, I hope and trust you have been
          blessed with the Holy Spirit of the Lord. I pray for the
          continuance of the light of that Spirit to rest upon the Saints,
          this I crave continually for myself and for all who profess to be
          Saints of the Most High.
          As I have frequently thought, and said, when duty requires I am
          happy in going from home, and I am happy in returning, for it is
          my greatest joy and comfort to do what the Lord requires of me,
          and what I know to be my duty, no matter what it is if the Lord
          requires it of me. This course gives joy and peace. When this
          principle becomes the acting principle of all the Saints, we
          shall find that Zion is here; we shall be in the midst of it; we
          shall enjoy it.
          As individuals, we enjoy Zion at present, but not as a community;
          there is so much sin, darkness, and ignorance, and the veil of
          the covering which is over the nations of the earth is measurably
          over the Latter-day Saints. The same unrighteous principles,
          which becloud the minds of men universally, more or less becloud
          the minds of the Latter-day Saints. Though the veil is partially
          broken to the Saints, though it becomes thin, as it were, and the
          twilight appears like the dawning of the day, yet we may travel
          for many years before the sunshine appears. It does not yet
          appear to this people, they are merely in the twilight.
          As one expressed it in ancient times, "We see through a glass
          darkly"--through a smoked or dim glass--through which we cannot
          behold objects clearly with the natural eye.
          We have not faith sufficient to have revelation, to have the
          visions of eternity opened unto us so clearly that we may see
          things as they are, consequently, we have to live by faith and
          not by sight. We have to live by the principles of the Gospel,
          which is faith in the heart and obedience to its requirements. It
          is our joy and salvation that we have this privilege.
          If we could understand the nature of the Priesthood--could
          comprehend it fully, this people, as a community, the Elders, as
          Elders of Israel, quorums, as quorums, when they present
          themselves before the Lord, would possess keys to unlock the
          treasury of heaven, and we could receive as one person receives
          from another. To us, as a people, the keys of the rich storehouse
          of the Lord are committed, yet we do not fully know how to unlock
          and receive. We receive a little here and there, and the hearts
          of the people are comforted by the very Priesthood we are in
          possession of, which has been given to this people for the
          express purpose of their receiving that which God has given them,
          though not yet to possess it independently, but as means for
          This Priesthood is given to the people, and the keys thereof,
          and, when properly understood, they may actually unlock the
          treasury of the Lord, and receive to their fullest satisfaction.
          But through our own weaknesses, through the frailty of human
          nature, we are not yet capable of doing so.
          We have to humble ourselves and become like little children in
          our feelings--to become humble and childlike in spirit, in order
          to receive the first illuminations of the spirit of the Gospel,
          then we have the privilege of growing, of increasing in
          knowledge, in wisdom, and in understanding. This is a great
          privilege, while the world, excepting this people who inhabit
          these valleys, and those that are associated with us in different
          parts of the earth, are destitute of this principle and
          privilege. Still, many of us, and I may say comparatively all of
          us, are upon the same ground, situated precisely like other
          professors of religion, in order that we may struggle, wrestle,
          and strive, until the Lord bursts the veil and suffers us to
          behold His glory, or a portion of it.
          If we did fully understand the principles of the Gospel--the keys
          of the Priesthood, it would be familiar with us, and be easy to
          be understood and to act upon and perform, and be no more of a
          miracle to know how to receive the things of God by revelation,
          than it is now a miracle to cast seed into the ground, after it
          is prepared, and reap our crops.
          An individual who holds a share in the Priesthood, and continues
          faithful to his calling, who delights himself continually in
          doing the things God requires at his hands, and continues through
          life in the performance of every duty, will secure to himself not
          only the privilege of receiving, but the knowledge how to receive
          the things of God, that he may know the mind of God continually;
          and he will be enabled to discern between right and wrong,
          between the things of God and the things that are not of God. And
          the Priesthood--the Spirit that is within him, will continue to
          increase until it becomes like a fountain of living water; until
          it is like the tree of life; until it is one continued source of
          intelligence and instruction to that individual.
          This is one of the most glorious and happy principles than can be
          set before any people, or any individual who will be faithful to
          his God and to his religion. Upon whoever are bestowed the keys
          of the eternal Priesthood, by a faithful life, will secure to
          themselves power to see the things of God, and will understand
          them as plainly as they ever understood anything by gazing upon
          it with their natural eyes, or as clearly as they ever could
          distinguish one object from another by their sensations.
          It is the privilege of every person who is faithful to the
          Priesthood, who can overcome the enemy, thwart the design of
          death, or him that hath the power of it, to live upon the earth
          until their appointed time; and they may know, see, and
          understand, by revelation, the things of God just as naturally as
          we understand natural things that are around us.
          We inquire, is this the character of the people called Latter-day
          Saints? We can say it is the character of many of them, but when
          we reflect, it is not the case with the whole of them. There are
          many who never fail to improve upon every means of grace given
          them, upon every particle of light imparted to them. They perform
          every duty that is made known to them, they cease to do evil
          wherever an evil is presented to them, they refrain, so far as is
          in their power, from every act and from every thought and
          disposition which is contrary to the holy Gospel.
          Again, when we look around we see many, very many, men and women
          who profess to know the things of God, to belong to His family,
          to the Church of the First-Born--the Church of Jesus Christ, who
          are ofttimes wrought upon by the Holy Spirit of the Gospel which
          has caused them to rejoice therein, who give thanks to their God,
          rejoice with joy unspeakable, and you would think they were very
          near the kingdom of heaven--near the threshold of the gate which
          opens into the presence of the Father and the Son, and yet, if
          anything crosses them, will give way to an evil temper; and if
          anything is presented to them which they do not understand, they
          condemn it at once; they are ready to pass judgment upon that
          which they do not understand. If they are crossed by their
          friends and families they are ready to speak by the spirit of
          evil, by the spirit of contention; they are ready to receive a
          little malice in their hearts. They do all this, they turn round
          and repent of it, they are sorry for it, and they say they will
          try to do better, will try to overcome their passions, or the
          temptations of the evil one in their natures. You see them again,
          have they kept themselves pure? No they have not, but they have
          given way to evil, to a little dishonesty, falsifying, shading of
          sentiment, speeches, sayings, and doings of their neighbors. They
          have given way to anger, and will remark, "It is true I got
          angry, I was overcome, true I acted the fool, but I mean to
          refrain from so doing in the future." And thus they live for a
          spell, but how long will it be before they are again overtaken in
          fault? Then if a delusive spirit, professedly a righteous one, is
          cast into a neighborhood, how easy such people are decoyed by it,
          led away by it.
          At one time you see them as enthusiastic as mortals can be, in
          what they call righteous principles, and hear them saying, "I
          have more light now than I ever had before in my life, I am
          better now than I ever was, I am filled with the Holy Spirit."
          This is the way we often find them, they are rejoiced exceedingly
          and are upon Pisgah's top--flaming Latter-day Saints, and,
          perhaps, when the next day or the next week has passed over they
          are angry, filled with malice and wrath. After a while they will
          say, "That was a delusive spirit, it is true I felt joyful and
          happy, I thought it was the best spirit and the most light I ever
          enjoyed in all the days of my life, but I now find I was
          deceived, I find that if I had continued in that spirit there was
          a trap laid to catch me, to decoy me away, and destroy my faith
          in the holy Gospel." Is this the case with the Latter-day Saints?
          Yes, with many of them.
          Our religion is a practical and progressive one. It will not
          prepare a thief, a liar, a sorcerer, a whoremonger, an adulterer,
          a murderer, or a false swearer, in one day, so that he can enter
          into the celestial kingdom of God. We ought to understand that
          when our lives have been filled with all manner of wickedness, to
          turn and repent of our sins, to be baptized for the remission of
          them, and have our names written upon the Church records, does
          not prepare us for the presence of our Father, and elder brother.
          What will? A continuation of faithfulness to the doctrines of
          Christ; nothing short of this will do it. The Latter-day Saints
          should understand this. Do they? Yes. Do they live to it? A great
          many of them do not. All ought to live their religion every day,
          and there are a great many who do. But there are a great many who
          do not, who are overcome with evil, get out of the true path of
          righteousness, and do those things which are wrong. They contend
          with each other, quarrel, have broils and difficulties in
          families, and in neighborhoods, law with each other touching
          property, one saying, "This is mine," and another saying, "It is
          not yours, but it is mine." One says, "You have wronged me," the
          other says, "I have not." Thus there are thousands of plans which
          the enemy of all righteousness employs to decoy the hearts of the
          people away from righteousness.
          If this people would live their religion, and continue year after
          year to live their religion, it would not be many years before we
          would see eye to eye; there would be no difference of opinion, no
          difference of sentiment, and the veil that now hangs over our
          minds would become so thin that we should actually see and
          discern things as they are.
          True we labor under many embarrassments with regard to our
          progress in Christian life, and it is right we should be situated
          just as we are. We wish to save the world of mankind, and
          difficulties, embarrassments, and obstacles are thrown in our way
          continually. If this congregation could live twenty years without
          communion and intercourse with any other people, if we did not
          preach any more to the world, and no more Saints were gathered
          from abroad, we might, perhaps, train ourselves so as to see eye
          to eye, and that too before we had lived as many years to come as
          this Church has been organized.
          But no, if we are instructed now, and understand all it is our
          privilege to understand, another year we must have another batch
          of clay thrown in the mill, as brother Kimball calls it, and this
          new supply spoils more or less of the clay that is already well
          tempered, and it is right that it should be so. Though this is a
          good comparison--the making of vessels out of clay, and the
          grinding up of clay, still, is it in every respect correct? We
          might carry it out perhaps, but I argue, and believe with all my
          soul, that if there were 10,000 Saints to emigrate to this point
          yearly from England, or any other country, and though thousands
          of the wicked should gather with them, it would not prove, for
          one moment, that any Saint would be obliged to sin thereby; it
          would not prove, for one moment, that this congregation before me
          would be obliged to do wrong.
          Though we may be mingled together, and our interchanges are as
          they are, still if a stranger should look upon us as a community,
          who have been here many years, and see but few of the new comers
          do wrong, and then judge us off and say, we are all evil, that
          none of us are righteous, that there is no good fruit here, that
          would be an unrighteous judgment and decision.
          It is our privilege, for you and me to live, from this day, so
          that our consciences will be void of offence towards God and man;
          it is in our power to do so, then why don't we? What is the
          matter? I will tell you what the difficulties and troubles are,
          by relating brother John Young's dream. He dreamed that he saw
          the devil with a looking-glass in his hand, and the devil held it
          to the faces of the people, and it revealed to them everybody's
          faults but their own.
          The difficulty is, neglecting to watch over ourselves. Just as
          soon as our eyes are turned away from watching ourselves, to see
          whether we do right, we begin to see faults in our neighbors;
          this is the great difficulty, and our minds become more and more
          blinded until we become entirely darkened. So long as I do the
          thing the Lord requires of me, and do not stop to inquire what I
          shall tell to my neighbor as his duty, and pay very close
          attention to my individual person, that my words are right, that
          my actions are right before God, that my reflections are right,
          and that my desires are according to the holy Gospel, I have not
          much time to look at the faults of my neighbors. Is not this
          This is our practical religion; it is our duty to stop and begin
          to look at ourselves. We may have trials to pass through, and
          when people come to me, and tell me that they are wonderfully
          tried and have a great many difficulties to encounter--have their
          troubles on the right and on the left, and what to do they are at
          a loss to know, I say, "I am glad of it." I rejoice to think that
          they must have trials as well as other people. And when they say,
          "It seems as though the devil would overcome me," it is a pretty
          good evidence that an individual is watching himself.
          If people could always understand the manifestations of the
          Spirit upon themselves, they would learn that they can be tempted
          as well as other people, and that would make them careful to
          watch against temptation and overcome it. Consequently, I rejoice
          for them, inasmuch as every individual who is prepared for the
          celestial kingdom must go through the same things.
          I am happy, brethren, for the privilege of having temptation. A
          great many people have thought that in my life I was not tempted
          like other men. I tell them if I am it is none of their business;
          it is nothing to them. Some say "Brother Brigham, you slide along
          and the devil lets you alone." If I have battles with him, I can
          overcome him single handed quicker than to call in my neighbors
          to help me. If I am tempted to speak an evil word, I will keep my
          lips locked together. Says one, "I do not know about that, that
          would be smothering up bad feelings, I am wonderfully tried about
          my neighbor, he has done wrong, he has abused me and I feel
          dreadful bad about it. Had I not better let it out than to keep
          it rankling within me?" No. I will keep bad feelings under and
          actually smother them to death, then they are gone. But as sure
          as I let them out they will live and afflict me. If I smother
          them in myself, if I actually choke them to death, destroy the
          life, the power, and vigor thereof, they will pass off and leave
          me clear of fault, and pure, so far as that is concerned; and no
          man or woman on earth knows that I have ever been tempted to
          indulge in wicked feelings. Keep them to yourselves.
          If you feel evil, keep it to yourselves until you overcome that
          evil principle. This is what I call resisting the devil, and he
          flees from me. I strive to not speak evil, to not feel evil, and
          if I do, to keep it to myself until it is gone from me, and not
          let it pass my lips.
          You should succeed in bringing your tongues into subjection, so
          as to never let them speak evil, so that they will perfectly obey
          your judgment and the discretion God has given you, and are
          perfectly obedient to the will of the holy Gospel. How long have
          we to live for that? I do not know, but I am strongly of the
          opinion that it is possible for a person to overcome their
          dispositions to evil, to such a degree that they will have no
          evil in the heart to slip out over the tongue; and if there is
          none in the heart, there is less danger of the tongue being used
          to the disadvantage of that individual, or to that of anybody
          else. If there is nothing in the heart which governs us, and
          controls to an evil effect, the tongue of itself will never
          produce evil.
          Quite a number of us have returned from our southern mission, and
          as I have given you a few of my views with regard to some of the
          particular parts of our religion, I say for myself, and for the
          rest of my brethren who have been absent with me, we are happy to
          see you. I am, and I am sure that the rest are glad of the
          privilege of standing before you again in this house. I have
          nothing particular upon my mind, only to urge all the Latter-day
          Saints to live their religion.
          I might say something with regard to the hard times. You know
          that I have told you that if any one was afraid of starving to
          death, let him leave, and go where there is plenty. I do not
          apprehend the least danger of starving, for until we eat up the
          last mule, from the tip of the ear to the end of the fly whipper,
          I am not afraid of staving to death. There are many people who
          cannot now get employment, but the spring is going to open upon
          us soon, and we are not going to suffer any more than what is for
          our good. I am thankful for the hand of the Lord which is
          visible; I am as thankful for this providence of His as for any
          that I ever received. I have told you, years ago, my feelings
          with regard to their sympathies, their faith, gratitude, and
          thankfulness, and their acknowledgment of the hand of the Lord
          and of the dispensations of His providence. My soul has been
          grieved to bleeding, to see the waste, and the prodigal feeling
          of this people in the use of their bountiful blessings. Many have
          walked them underfoot, and have been ready to curse God who
          bestowed them. They wanted gold and silver, instead of wheat and
          corn, and fine flour, and the best vegetables that ever grew upon
          the earth. They walked them underfoot, and set at nought the
          choice blessings of the Lord their God. If I were to see those
          individuals obliged to gnaw the ground in order to get out the
          thistle roots, and have no fingers to dig them with, it would not
          be a disagreeable sight to me, until they learn to know who it is
          that feeds them.
          We never ought to be without three or five years provisions on
          hand. But when you see men run to hell to sell a bushel of wheat
          for sixty cents, instead of laying it up in their granaries for a
          day of scarcity, you are forced to conclude that they would trade
          with the very devil, to get his coat and shoes in exchange for
          their wheat. I hope they will learn wisdom in the future, and lay
          up wheat to feed the brethren when they come here from distant
          countries. If they will learn wisdom now, I will promise them, in
          the name of Israel's God, that the earth will yield its
          abundance, as it has heretofore. Men in these valleys have reaped
          crop after crop which grew spontaneously, without putting a drag
          or a plow in the land, and yet they are ready to curse God for
          His blessings. How do you suppose the Lord feels? If He were no
          better than I am, He would chastise us far more severely than we
          have been. I will give way to others.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, January 27, 1856
                         Heber C. Kimball, January 27, 1856
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, January 27, 1856
               Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, Delivered in the
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 27, 1856.
          I do not feel as though I desired to take up much time, I merely
          wish to say a few words in regard to what we have heard to-day. I
          am aware that a great many in the world are pleased with fancies,
          they are gratified and edified with that which is artificial, but
          if people would be pleased and instructed with such remarks as we
          have heard to-day, it would be well, for they are the principles
          that will save you, that will lead you into the celestial world.
          Listen to that which you have heard to-day from brother Brigham;
          he is our leader, our Prophet, our Priest, and our Governor--the
          Governor of the Territory of Utah. In him is every power and key
          of celestial life and salvation, pertaining to every person there
          is on this earth, and that is a principle which but few persons
          realize. You take a way the keys that are with him, and with
          those who sustain him, and I would not give a dime for you. Sin
          to such a degree that brother Brigham and his counsellors, and
          those who are associated with him--the Apostles of Jesus
          Christ--withdraw from your midst, and I would not give a dime for
          all the salvation you have got; that is my faith. He holds the
          keys of the kingdom of heaven, just as much as Peter, James, and
          John did after Jesus committed the keys to them on the mount, and
          said, "I give unto you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and
          whomsoever you less I will bless, and whomsoever you curse I will
          Take away that power, take away those keys, and you cannot find
          your way into the celestial kingdom. The keys in his possession
          will unlock the door and let you through into another existence,
          more excellent than this. He holds the keys. Can anybody pass
          without them? No, only as they get authority through him. Are
          they appreciated as they should be? Do this people listen to the
          counsel that proceeds from his mouth, as the words of the living
          oracles of God?
          I would not care if there was not a Bible within ten thousand
          miles of this place, or any other book or scrip; here are the
          oracles living right in our midst, and we receive them from day
          to day, by word of mouth from a living man, an Apostle who is
          alive, and through a Priesthood which is living in our midst.
          At the same time, a great many persons think more of the
          testimony of a dead Apostle than they do of a living one, and
          think more of dead Prophets than they do of living ones who are
          here in their midst. It is generally the case that men do not
          fully appreciate their blessings in life; often when their wives
          are dead they think more of them than they did when they were
          living, and it is just so with some wives in regard to their
          former husbands. We do not always appreciate the blessings we
          have in our possession until they are taken from us; then we
          begin to appreciate them; so when good men have left us we cease
          thinking of their faults, but begin to cherish the memory of
          their good deeds.
          It is thus with a great many of our sisters when their husbands
          have gone to preach the Gospel; they now think they never had a
          fault in the world, but when they were at home they were full of
          I am not going to preach a discourse filled with high flown,
          exalted words, having no meaning to it, but I will come down to
          the capacity of every person that they may understand. Many times
          we do not appreciate our children, and take a right course with
          them when living, and when they are dead, we mourn and think of
          their lovely behavior, but never think of their misdeeds. Let us
          tray to think as much of the living as of the dead. That which is
          dead will take care of itself, while that which is living wants
          somebody to care for it.
          I consider that what we have heard to-day is of great worth to
          those who hear, but it is of far more worth to those who receive
          it, and more still to those who practice it, and bring forth the
          fruits thereof. Let us treasure up these things in our hearts and
          be faithful, and serve our God and keep His commandments.
          In regard to our doings at Fillmore, all was peaceful and
          harmonious, so far as the Legislature was concerned; though the
          brief term of forty days, allotted by Congress for a session, is
          not long enough for the Members to thoroughly withdraw their
          minds from the various other channels, in which their thoughts
          are constantly so busily occupied. This fact tends to postpone
          important and difficult subjects of legislation, until most of
          the time has elapsed, when it is too late to enter upon them with
          that care, reflection, and critical arrangement, and wording,
          which they demand. Aside from this, the Assembly of 1854-55, by
          their revisions, and other acts, presented us with a volume of
          very good laws, and wisdom did not dictate any material
          alterations for the present, therefore most of the bills passed
          this winter have been grants to herd grounds.
          It would be but just to our new Territory, and highly beneficial
          to her interests, if Congress would either lengthen the term of
          our sessions or sanction, by paying the commissioners, our wise
          policy in appointing a Code Commission to prepare and present
          laws of an important nature. The latter course is, by far, the
          most preferable; for by that method capable men can be selected,
          who have time and opportunity to give all necessary attention to
          any given subject, and to thoroughly prepare it for speedy and
          satisfactory action. Our position, surroundings, and
          characteristics, prohibit the ancient style of enacting very
          numerous, wordy, and voluminous laws, therefore the more
          necessity for a longer period, or the payment of Code
          In our votes and feelings we were one, and did the best that the
          time and our judgments permitted; and may God grant that this
          people ever be one, and cheerfully obey His commandments and all
          good and wholesome laws. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, January 27, 1856
                         Jedediah M. Grant, January 27, 1856
                        WILL PROVE A BLESSING TO THE SAINTS.
           Remarks by President J. M. Grant, delivered in the Tabernacle,
                       Great Salt Lake City, January 27, 1856.
          I have been instructed while listening to the brethren, and am
          pleased with the practical observations that our President has
          given. They pertain to the business of every day, and will
          greatly benefit the Saints. We have had a great variety from this
          stand, and the scenes of life, as we pass through, are varied in
          their nature.
          I am pleased with brother Kimball's feelings, testimony, and
          views, in relation to our visit to the capital of the Territory
          of Utah.
          I am aware that the general labor of the Legislature, perhaps,
          has been as great as that of any other legislature in the
          different Territories, in the same length of time.
          Our laws, proceedings, grants, &c., are necessarily different
          from the usual routine of other legislative bodies, but our
          committees were doubtless as diligent as the committees in any
          other legislative body.
          And when we were in session, we were in order, and in a situation
          to act as correctly, and with as much precision and consistency,
          as any other legislative body that can be found upon the face of
          the earth. Though we may not tie ourselves to all of those strict
          rules that others tie themselves to, yet we understand
          legislating, we understand the science as far as legislative
          science is understood by the present age, which is only in a
          I wish, therefore, under all the feelings and circumstances we
          may be placed in, that we may each act with an eye single to the
          welfare of the people, as much so as the Legislature has during
          the present session.
          I hope the Saints will treasure up the remarks they have heard
          to-day, and profit by them. I am satisfied that we should bear
          with each other's weaknesses, for we are ourselves subject to the
          same infirmities as our brethren; we are subject to the same
          temptations as those who are similar in their nature; we should,
          therefore, be willing to look with the same complacency on the
          weaknesses of others, as we would wish them to look upon ours.
          I am aware of the feelings that exist in the community through
          darkness and unbelief; many neglect their duty as Saints, and
          they grow dark in their minds.
          I have doubts of that man who neglects his prayers, and I have
          also doubts of some who attend to their prayers. I have great
          doubts of those who profess to be Saints, have all the privileges
          of Saints, and participate in the enjoyments of Saints, yet do
          not consider that the duty of prayer is obligatory on them.
          They think they can have around them, their wives, and children,
          and friends, and engage in the duties of life and take great
          responsibility upon them, and yet slide along and lay aside their
          duty as a Saint of God in regard to praying.
               If a person is in trouble, or in want, he should seek unto
          the Lord by prayer, and obtain from Him aid, assistance, and
          light, and by that Divine Spirit he may overcome his weakness,
          break through the cloud of darkness, and walk in the light of the
          There are instructions in the Gospel, in the words of the men of
          God, though the language which they use may not, peradventure, be
          as beautiful as words can be arranged, or as that which others
          can use, but there is an influence attending the words of a man
          who speaks by the Spirit of God.
          I relish greatly the instructions which you have received this
          morning; to me they are sweet, very wholesome, and good. I like
          them, they suit my disposition, they agree with my palate, and I
          am thankful for such instructions. I am thankful that we live in
          a day when the Almighty so blesses us.
          We are gathered out from the land that gave us birth, and from
          former associations in life; we are blessed here with peace; the
          hand of the oppressor is not upon us, and the arm of the tyrant
          has ceased to afflict and fall upon our neck.
          We are enjoying happiness, we can worship our God and keep His
          commandments, and listen to the voice of His servants without
          molestation, without being afraid or annoyed, without expecting a
          mob on the right hand and on the left. For these things I am very
          I am also fully apprised of the truth of our President's remarks,
          in reference to that lavish spirit which has existed in the minds
          of the Saints in relation to their grain. I am aware that all do
          not husband and take care of their grain as they should; they
          have counted it of little worth, as dross, as a thing of naught,
          and have been anxious to sell their wheat, corn, and such staple
          articles of food as might have been secured in granaries, and
          laid up for a hard time, or against a day of famine.
          In regard to those who have been improvident and not careful, I
          am with the President, I cannot pity them if they have to suffer.
          I have seen the time, in this beautiful valley, when we first
          came here, when we had to bring enough of grain from the States
          to last eighteen months, that we were under the necessity of
          boiling and eating the hides of our cattle, and of going to the
          lowlands to dig thistle roots to subsist upon, that we might not
          die, but lie on the earth.
          We did not all have to do this; some of us were comfortable, and
          had as much to live upon as we have now, for we took care to save
          what we brought with us. Many of those, who are now destitute of
          grain, are among those who were lavish with the food that the
          Almighty caused the earth to produce.
          I will here remark that I hope the Bishops in the different wards
          of the city will see that the poor do not go hungry, that they
          will keep themselves posted up as to the situation of the poor in
          their wards, and send round the Teachers and assistants to
          ascertain the condition of the people. I know that there is not
          grain enough to feed the people; some will have to suffer for the
          want of that article of food.
          Take the city of Fillmore; they have old grain enough for that
          place; they have not raised grain the present season, yet there
          is one man in that city who has eleven hundred bushels of wheat.
          The price there is two dollars a bushel, and they are selling
          flour to each other at six dollars a hundred.
          In Sanpete they have wheat, corn, and potatoes, sufficient to
          last them until harvest. The main suffering in the Territory of
          Utah, this season, will be in great Salt Lake county. The masses
          of the people are here, and the grain is consumed where the
          masses are; consequently, you may look for more suffering in
          Great Salt Lake county than in any other.
          It will necessarily be here that the Bishops and their assistants
          will look for the poor. Some will not go very hungry before they
          beg, but there are some who will actually suffer very much before
          they make their wants known; that class ought to be seen to and
          felt after, and ought to be administered to. We should feel for
          each other, and seek to relieve, as far as we can, the needy and
          I do not look for much trouble myself; I do not look for the
          people to suffer as they did the first winter we came here. The
          winter is cold and the cattle are dying, but ere long the weather
          will break, the people will get employment, and feel better.
          Do not be discouraged in a hard time, be patient until spring
          comes, when you will feel pleasant and happy, and then is the
          time to deny the faith, if you are inclined to do so; never deny
          the faith in a dark day.
          I for one am glad that our crops failed. Why? Because it teaches
          the people a lesson, it keeps the corrupt at bay, for they know
          that they would have to starve, or import their rations, should
          they come to injure us in the Territory of Utah.
          With the practical lessons we have learned, and their effects
          upon our enemies I am glad, and I consider it one of the greatest
          God-sends that eve happened the people of the Saints, since their
          immigration to this land. I consider the grass-hopper war one of
          the greatest blessings to those who see it in the light of the
          Lord, and who discern the hand of the Lord in it.
          We found our brethren southward in a pretty good spirit,
          generally speaking; they needed a little comforting and
          instruction on this point. We have some men among us who hold
          high and important offices which we respect, and we would be very
          glad to respect the men, and will actually respect them, if they
          will respect the people of the Territory, and the laws of the
          Territory. But when a man comes among us and will not respect us,
          nor our laws, will not respect our Governor nor our Legislature,
          he need not expect us to respect him.
          Our brethren southward, I think, through the time of the
          Legislature, had the privilege of learning this practical lesson,
          to respect those who respect our laws, and not to respect men
          when they trample upon the laws of the country, and set at
          defiance the enactments of the Legislature.
          I believe, on the whole, that the capital of this Territory will
          not be injured by the visit of the Members from the various
          counties. I believe that the people were benefited, and I believe
          that the community at large will be profited through the labors
          of the Legislature.
          I hope then to see the Saints united more and more, and
          notwithstanding we have to be mixed with new clay, and ground
          over and over again, I say, come on you new recruits, I am not
          hide-bound in my feelings, I reach out my hands to the south, to
          the north, and to the universe, and say come on, we want the new
          recruits here.
          I want to see the Territory filled up in the north and in the
          south, in the east and in the west, and to see the valleys
          flourish and blossom as a rose. I like to see the hardy men come
          forth from the other side of the ocean; I like to see them
          pouring in by tens of thousands. The new recruits, as a general
          thing, have stood well.
          Take the Yankees in Kirtland, have they all stood the test? No.
          One half, at least, of the Yankee members of this Church have
          apostatized. Take the first quorum of the Twelve, how many of
          them stood by the Prophet of the living God, and kept the faith?
          Six only.
          Then we may expect that some of our new recruits back out, depart
          and deny the faith, and this has been the case from the
          commencement. I like to see the new recruits come on, they will
          get ground up with the old clay and be just as good. You are only
          in the morning of "Mormonism," just in the commencement of it. We
          have no old recruits, in one sense, but we are all new recruits,
          enlisted under the same banner, worshipping the same God, and
          united under the same brotherhood of Latter-day Saints which
          always pertains to the Priesthood of God.
          Then I like to see the English, the Scotch, Welsh, French, Danes,
          and men from every nation, kindred, tongue, and people, come
          forth and unite under the standard of truth, obey God and be one.
          We had no difficulty, while at Fillmore, among the "Mormons,"
          they kept themselves right side up with care, and with them all
          was harmonious and satisfactory.
          May the peace of God be with you; may the light of the Holy Ghost
          illuminate you; may the words of the Prophet be unto you as a
          sweet morsel; and may the leaven of the Gospel work in you; and
          may the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ bless you for
          ever, which may He grant, in the Redeemer's name. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, February 17, 1856
                          Brigham Young, February 17, 1856
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, February 17, 1856.
          We have just heard brother Morley's testimony concerning the
          religion that we have embraced. The extent of knowledge,
          incorporated within the salvation extended to the children of
          men, will vastly exceed the researches of the human family, and
          when they have passed the veil, they will then understand that
          they have but just commenced to learn. Brother Morley says he
          never expects to be too old to learn; I believe that doctrine.
          That which is to be learned in the eternities of the Gods
          pertains to life, and that life is exhibited to the human family
          in the degree which they are capacitated to receive it, that they
          may be taught as we teach our children, that they may learn the
          first rudiments of eternal lives.
          Could we live to the age of Methuselah, and eat the fruits which
          the earth would produce in her strength, as did Adam and Eve
          before the transgression, and spend our lives in searching after
          the principles of eternal life, we would find, when one eternity
          had passed to us, that we had been but children thus far, babies
          just commencing to learn the things which pertains to the
          eternities of the Gods.
          We might ask, when shall we cease to learn? I will give you my
          opinion about it; never, never. If we continue to learn all that
          we can, pertaining to the salvation which is purchased and
          presented to us through the Son of God, is there a time when a
          person will cease to learn? Yes, when he has sinned against God
          the Father, Jesus Christ the Son, and the Holy Ghost--God's
          minister; when he has denied the Lord, defied Him and committed
          the sin that in the Bible is termed the unpardonable sin--the sin
          against the Holy Ghost. That is the time when a person will cease
          to learn, and from that time forth, will descend in ignorance,
          forgetting that which they formerly knew, and decreasing until
          they return to the native element, whether it be one thousand or
          in one million years, or during as many eternities as you can
          count. They will cease to increase, but must decrease, until they
          return to the native element. These are the only characters who
          will ever cease to learn, both in time and eternity.
          A number of items occupy my mind pertaining to the Saints, I may
          say, a great many more than I could tell in one day, in one
          month, or in one year. Those who are well acquainted with me,
          know something of the action of my mind. To explain it, let me
          say to you, if you wish to tell me a long story, one that will
          take you two hours to get through with, a key word will at once
          give me an understanding of all you could say, in that long time.
          All who are acquainted with me know this. Bring any business
          matter before me, and the brethren with whom I am associated in
          business transactions, know that I need but a word to know the
          nature of it. So it is with regard to my preaching to the people.
          If I could put into them the same spirit and understanding which
          I have, they could see and understand things without a long
          detail of explanation. But this is not the case with all the
          people, therefore I am, in a manner, compelled to use the time I
          do in speaking to them upon the various subjects, at least so far
          as I can possibly spare it. If I were disposed to, I could train
          myself to get up here and take a text and explain it, and dwell
          upon one little item just as long as any other man, but what is
          the use of it? Upon this principle it would take us more
          eternities than we shall ever see, to learn what we have to
          learn, consequently, when I speak to you I speak the few words I
          have to say, as I already have upon the subject of intelligence
          and learning.
          We shall never cease to learn, unless we apostatize from the
          religion of Jesus Christ. Then we shall cease to increase, and
          will continue to decrease and decompose, until we return to our
          native element. Can you understand that? It is a subject worthy
          the attention of the eminent divines of Christendom, and they may
          search into it until they are tired, and still know comparatively
          little about it, while I preach it to you in a few words.
          I will here introduce a subject that we all should be acquainted
          with, I allude to morality. Have you been taught morality? Yes,
          every one of you have been taught not to use profane language, to
          be honest in all your dealings, to be courteous to all at home
          and abroad, and to be strictly upright on all occasions. All this
          you have been taught from your youth.
          Many think that all which was taught them by their fathers and
          mothers, school teachers and priests, ought to be removed, laid
          aside, dispensed with, and that they should begin anew to learn
          every principle of civilization. This is a great mistake. I make
          these remarks because I have heard Elders preach that there was
          not a sectarian priest--not a man living upon the earth, or that
          had lived upon it, neither a reformer nor a professed Christian,
          from the time the Priesthood was taken from the earth until
          Joseph Smith came, but what went straight to hell fire when he
          died. Yes, I have heard them preach just as absurdly as that. I
          have heard many say, I will dispense with this, and I will
          dispense with that; and many of our Elders actually dispense with
          praying, and say it is nothing but a sectarian notion. Were you
          taught by your fathers to pray? "Yes, but that is a sectarian
          notion." Were you taught not to pilfer? "Yes, but we think, we
          wont say it aloud, it is nothing but a sectarian notion, and we
          have to learn everything over again." This is a mistaken idea.
          There is only one thing which the people lack on this point, in
          order that their traditions and former education may do them
          good, and that is to know how to seer the good from the bad, how
          to assimilate to themselves every good trait of character they
          have seen in their fathers and mothers, teachers and neighbors,
          and every good thing that has been taught them from their youth,
          and how to gather to themselves every good principle they have
          been traditionated in, and store that up as their individual
          property, and then dispense with every erroneous idea and every
          inconsistency. Many things which have been taught us in our
          childhood, or in our early lives, are truly inconsistent, lay
          them aside and cleave to the traditions which actually tend to
          virtue, holiness, chastity, loveliness, kindness, honesty, and
          truthfulness in every respect, and gather all the good into our
          own store house, and let each one say, that belongs to me.
          Some imagine that they must begin and unlearn the whole of their
          former education, but I say, cling to all the good that you have
          learned, and discard the bad. This leads me into a field, the
          gate to which I wish to have closed up, locked up, and passed by;
          I do not wish to say anything about it. I will say this much,
          however, if there are not all kinds of fish in this Gospel net, I
          should like to see the kind that is not in it, and I think that
          would be something new under the sun.
          Treasure up in your hearts that which tends to virtue. You say,
          "I want an explanation upon virtue." I wish I could so give it to
          you, that you could understand it when I am done talking; I will
          do my best to do so. Learn the will of God, keep His commandments
          and do His will, and you will be a virtuous person. Can you
          understand that? If you can know the will of God and do it, you
          will be a virtuous person. You say, "Perhaps I should be led to
          do that which is contrary to my former traditions, and to do that
          which is really wrong." No matter anything about that; if you can
          know the will of God and do it, you will be a virtuous person,
          and will receive knowledge upon knowledge, and wisdom upon
          wisdom, and you will increase in understanding, in faith, and in
          the light of eternity, and know how to discriminate between the
          right and the wrong. I know the people say that they do not
          understand, that they do not know what the Lord requires of them.
          I say keep the commandments of the Lord. We were taught that the
          commandments of the Lord were this, that, and the other, in our
          former lives, but when we can know and understand, by the
          revelations of Jesus Christ, the will of our Father in heaven and
          do His will, He will make us pure and holy, and fit for the
          society of angels and Himself. Will we not be virtuous then? yes,
          in the highest sense. Many say, "I don't know the will of the
          Lord, I wish I did. I do really wish I knew what the Lord
          requires of me, but I do not know, and do not know how to find
          I will now refer you to the scripture where it reads that we
          shall be judged according to the deeds done in the body. If I do
          not know the will of my Father, and what He requires of me in a
          certain transaction, if I ask Him to give me wisdom concerning
          any requirement in life, or in regard to my own course, or that
          of my friends, my family, my children, or those that I preside
          over, and get no answer from Him, and then do the very best that
          my judgment will teach me, He is bound to own and honor that
          transaction, and He will do so to all intents and purposes. I
          have often reflected, with regard to people knowing the mind and
          will of the Lord by revelation. My thoughts turn within me in a
          moment, in my reflections upon what has hitherto been, and that
          which actually now comes before me, concerning the Saints in the
          last days and in the former days. For instance, Jesus, when upon
          the earth, called twelve men to be witnesses that he was the
          Christ. Then, there were a great many others who believed that
          fact, but he showed to those twelve men things that he showed to
          none else; he convinced them in a degree that he convinced no
          other person, that is, in some instances.
          My mind then reflects, in a moment, did Jesus have the power to
          make his disciples believe that he was the Son of God by raising
          the dead, by laying hands on the sick, by walking on water, by
          multiplying the particles of bread and fish set before the
          multitude, or by any other miracle? Did he convince, and prove to
          twelve men that he was the Christ, by the miracles he performed?
          He did not. He did not convince them by one or all of the acts,
          which were called miracles, that he performed upon the earth. I
          know that many think that they are a great proof, that it is
          astonishing that people will not believe, when they read over the
          history and miracles performed in the days of Jesus and his
          Apostles. Let me tell you that if his Apostles were here in this
          our day, travelling through the country, raising the dead, laying
          hands on the sick, casting out devils, walking upon the water, or
          doing whatever they might be able to perform, it would all be no
          proof to the people that they were sent of God. I know that some
          of you think this is strange, and if so, I have strange views
          upon these subjects. It is no proof to me, it is no proof to any
          person else, and often serves to throw persons, relying upon it,
          into temptation, and to cast them still further into darkness.
          "Have you any proof of this?" Yes, right here in our midst. Men
          who have professedly seen the most, known and understood the
          most, in this Church, and who have testified in the presence of
          large congregations, in the name of Israel's God, that they have
          seen Jesus, &c., have been the very men who have left this
          kingdom, before others who had to live by faith. I have a witness
          right before me, and I am fearful every time that a man or woman
          comes to me and relates great visions, saying, "I have had a
          vision, an angel came and told me thus and so; the visions of
          eternity were opened, and I saw thus and so; I saw my destiny; I
          saw what the brethren would do with me; I foresay this and that.
          Look out for that man or woman going to the devil.
          I ask, is there a reason for men and women being exposed more
          constantly and more powerfully, to the power of the enemy, by
          having visions than by not having them?" There is and it is
          simply this--God never bestows upon His people, or upon an
          individual, superior blessings without a severe trial to prove
          them, to prove that individual, or that people, to see whether
          they will keep their covenants with Him, and keep in remembrance
          what He has shown them. Then the greater the vision, the greater
          the display of the power of the enemy. And when such individuals
          are off their guard they are left to themselves, as Jesus was.
          For this express purpose the Father withdrew His spirit from His
          son, at the time he was to be crucified. Jesus had been with his
          Father, talked with Him, dwelt in His bosom, and knew all about
          heaven, about making the earth, about the transgression of man,
          and what would redeem the people, and that he was the character
          who was to redeem the sons of earth, and the earth itself from
          all sin that had come upon it. The light, knowledge, power, and
          glory with which he was clothed were far above, or exceeded that
          of all others who had been upon the earth after the fall,
          consequently at the very moment, at the hour when the crisis came
          for him to offer up his life, the Father withdrew Himself,
          withdrew His Spirit, and cast a vail over him. That is what made
          him sweat blood. If he had had the power of God upon him, he
          would not have sweat blood; but all was withdrawn from him, and a
          veil was cast over him, and he then plead with the Father not to
          forsake him. "No," says the Father, "you must have your trials,
          as well as others."
          So when individuals are blessed with visions, revelations, and
          great manifestations, look out, then the devil is nigh you, and
          you will be tempted in proportion to the vision, revelation, or
          manifestation you have received. Hence thousands, when they are
          off their guard, give way to the severe temptations which come
          upon them, and behold they are gone.
          You will recollect that I have often told you that miracles would
          not save a person, and I say that they never should. If I were to
          see a man come in here this day, and say, "I am the great one
          whom the Lord has sent," and cause fire to come down in our
          sight, through the ceiling that is over our heads, I would not
          believe any more for that. It is no matter what he does, I cannot
          believe any more on that account. What will make me believe? What
          made the Twelve Apostles of Jesus Christ witnesses? What
          constituted them Apostles--special witnesses to the world? Was it
          seeing miracles? No. What was it? The visions of their minds were
          opened, and it was necessary that a few should receive light,
          knowledge, and intelligence, that all the powers of earth and
          hell could not gainsay or compete with. That witness was within
          them, and yet, after all that was done for them, after all that
          Jesus showed them, and after all the power of the spirit of
          revelation which they possessed, you find that one of them
          apostatized, turned away and sold his Lord and master for thirty
          pieces of silver, in consequence of his not being firm to his
          covenant in the hour of darkness and temptation. Another of them
          was ready to say, "I do not know anything about the Lord Jesus
          Christ," and denied him with cursing and swearing.
          Some are apt now to say, "I don't know anything about this
          Mormonism, I don't know about the Priesthood." Did you not once
          know? "I thought I did." Did you not once know that Joseph Smith
          was a Prophet? "I thought I did." Did you not once know that this
          was the kingdom of God set up on the earth? "I thought I did, but
          now I find myself deceived." What is the reason? Because they
          give way to temptation; they may have had great light, knowledge,
          and understanding, the vision of their minds may have been opened
          and eternity exhibited to their view, but when this is closed up,
          in proportion to the light given to them, so is the darkness that
          comes upon them to try them.
          Are you going to apostatize when you are in darkness? That is the
          time to stand firm. I know there are some people right in our
          midst, only about on a par with good quakers; say they "I pray
          when I feel like it." Have you prayers in your families? "Yes,
          sometimes, but I do not always feel like praying, and then I feel
          as though it would be a sin."
          Let me tell you how you should do. If you feel that you are
          tempted not to open your mouth to the Lord, and as though the
          heavens are brass over your heads and the earth iron beneath you
          feet, and that every thing is closed up, and you feel that it
          would be a sin for you to pray, then walk up to the devil and
          say, Mr. Devil, get out of my way; and if you feel that you
          cannot get down upon your knees for fear you will swear, say, get
          down knees; and if they don't feel right when they are down, put
          something under them, some sharp sticks, for instance, and say,
          knees come to it. "But I dare not open my mouth," says one, "for
          fear that I shall swear." Then say, open, mouth, and now tongue,
          begin. Cannot I say Father? Yes, I can: I learned that in the
          days of my youth. Suppose you say, "Father, look in mercy upon
          me," do you think the devil is going to snap you up then? If he
          is still by, and you dare not open your eyes for fear you will
          see him, tell him to stand there until you have done praying, and
          bring the body to a state of submission.
          I have taught you that the spirit is pure, when it comes into the
          tabernacle. The tabernacle is subject to sin, but the spirit is
          not. A great many think that the spirits of the children of men,
          when they enter the tabernacles, are totally depraved; this is a
          mistake. They are as holy as the angels; the devil has no power
          to contaminate them, he only contaminated the bodies. When your
          spirit wishes to worship the Father, and your body is so full of
          weakness or wickedness, that you feel as though you could not do
          it, go to and bring your body into subjection; bow the knee and
          confess that Jesus is the Christ, if it is darker that 10,000
          midnights in your minds; say, "I am for the Lord anyhow."
          That makes me think of a great many Christians in the world; when
          they are sick and in trouble they will pray; if they are in fear
          of starving to death for want of good, of freezing through lack
          of raiment of fuel, then they will call upon the Lord. I know the
          old Prophet said, "In the day of trouble they draw nigh unto me."
          Get out, say I, in my feelings, in regard to such a religion.
          When I am starving to death it is time for me to be diligent in
          getting something to eat; when the ship is in a storm, it is then
          time to look out for the rigging. One may say, "Are you not going
          down below to pray, in this dreadful storm?" "No, I have no time
          to pray now, I must take care of the ship." So it should be with
          every Latter-day Saint. By and by the storm is over, then let us
          go down into the cabin and do up our praying in fair weather.
          That is what "Mormonism" teaches me; and when it is dark as
          midnight darkness, when there is not one particle of feeling in
          my heart to pray, shall I then say, I will not pray? No, but get
          down knees, bend yourselves upon the floor, and mouth, open;
          tongue, speak; and we will see what will come forth, and you
          shall worship the Lord God of Israel, even when you feel as
          though you could not say a word in His favor. That is the victory
          we have to gain; that is the warfare we have to wage. It is
          between the spirit and the body; they are inseparably connected.
          The spirit was not made here, it was organized in eternity,
          before the worlds were, with the Father and with angels before
          they came here.
          When the devil got possession of the earth, his power extended to
          that which pertains to the earth. He obtained influence over the
          children of men in their present organization, because the
          spirits of men yielded to the temptations of the evil principle
          that the flesh or body is subjected to. This causes the warfare
          spoken of by Paul, when he says, "The spirit warreth against the
          flesh, and the flesh against the spirit." Paul explained it as
          well as he could, and I am trying to explain it as well as I can.
          Often when the spirit would do good the body overcomes, then one
          does the evil that brings into subjection the spirit. When the
          spirits of men are subject to the body, and continue to be, and
          commit the amount of evil necessary to fill up their cup, they
          are cast out and their names will be blotted out from the Lamb's
          Book of Life.
          You know that it used to be a great saying, and I might say
          worthy of all acceptation, among the Methodists, "I know that my
          Redeemer lives, and my name is written in the Lamb's Book of
          Life." Their names were always there, and never will be blotted
          out, though they may be up and down, warm, hot, and cool, and
          though they may sin to-day, and to-morrow repent of it, but their
          names will remain in the Lamb's Book of Life until they sin the
          sin unto death. And when their names are once blotted out they
          will never be written there again; they will then be numbered
          with those who will cease to increase, cease to learn, to
          multiply, and spread abroad. 
          But again to the witness, that is on my mind. It was necessary
          for Jesus Christ to open the heavens to certain individuals that
          they might be witnesses of his personage, death, sufferings, and
          resurrection; those men were witnesses. But as Jesus appeared to
          the two brethren going out of Jerusalem, he was made known to
          them in the breaking of bread. Now suppose he had eaten that
          bread, and gone out without opening their eyes, how could they
          have known that he was the Savior who had been crucified on Mount
          Calvary? They could not; but in the breaking of bread the vision
          of their minds was opened. This was necessary in order to
          constitute safe witnesses, and they returned to Jerusalem and
          told the brethren what they had seen.
          When Jesus came and ate fish broiled upon the coals, and told his
          disciples to cast the net on the other side of the ship, which
          they did and got it so full that they could hardly draw it to
          shore, would they have known that he was the Savior by the
          catching and hauling in a wonderful quantity of fish, or by
          anything else that they could have seen with their natural eyes?
          No, but when he came and ate the boiled fish and honeycomb, he
          opened their eyes and they saw that he was present with them. He
          had been back to his Father, had ascended to heaven and again
          descended, and opened their minds that they might be special
          witnesses. This is necessary. Did all the disciples, in the days
          of the Apostles, see the risen Jesus? No. I know the inquiry may
          arise, can a person be a real disciple without having visions?
          Yes, but that person cannot be a special witness to the doctrine
          he believes in.
          What makes true disciples to a doctrine, to a religion, to a
          creed, or to a faith, no matter what it is which is subscribed
          to? To be faithful adherents to those articles of faith or
          doctrine taught, makes them true disciples to that religion or
          doctrine. Then if we have the religion of the Savior we are
          entitled to the blessings precisely as they were anciently. Not
          that all had visions, not that all had dreams, not that all had
          the gift of tongues or the interpretation of tongues, but every
          man received according to his capacity and the blessing of the
          Giver. "Well, brother Brigham, have you had visions?" Yes, I
          have. "Have you had revelations?" Yes, I have them all the time,
          I live constantly by the principle of revelation. I never
          received one iota of intelligence, from the letter A to what I
          now know, I mean that, from the very start of my life to this
          time, I have never received one particle of intelligence only by
          revelation, no matter whether father or mother revealed it, or my
          sister, or neighbor.
          No person receives knowledge only upon the principle of
          revelation, that is, by having something revealed to them. "Do
          you have the revelations of the Lord Jesus Christ?" I will leave
          that for others to judge. If the Lord requires anything of this
          people, and speaks through me, I will tell them of it; but if He
          does not, still we all live by the principle of revelation. Who
          reveals? Every body around us; we learn of each other. I have
          something which you have not, and you have something which I have
          not; I reveal what I have to you, and you reveal what you have to
          me. I believe that we are revelators to each other. Are the
          heavens opened? Yes, to some at times, yet upon natural
          principles, upon the principle of natural philosophy. "Do you
          know the will and mind of the Lord?" Yes, concerning this people,
          and concerning myself. Do every one of my brethren and sisters
          know the will of the Lord? Let me say to the Latter-day Saints,
          if they will take up their cross and follow the Lord Jesus Christ
          in the regeneration, many of them will receive more, know more,
          and have more of the spirit of revelation than they are aware of;
          but the revelations which I receive are all upon natural
          principles. I will give you one revelation which I had in Far
          West, and it was upon the same principle that it would be for me
          to have a revelation now, while I am talking to you. It was in
          the spring of 1838, before there was any disturbance in Far West,
          or in Davis County.
          This people, thought I, are obnoxious to these Missourians, our
          religion they hate, our Prophet they despise and would like to
          kill him; they are ignorant of the things of God; they have
          received the precepts of men and drank deep into them, and are so
          interwoven with their feelings that the true religion of heaven
          cannot abide in their minds. Therefore I saw, upon natural
          principles, that we would be driven from there, but when, I did
          not know; but still it was plain to me that we would have to
          leave the State, and that when we did leave it we would not go
          south, north or west, but east, back to the other States. That I
          saw upon natural principles, and I knew what those people were
          afraid of. I then saw that we would go north, as a Church and
          people, and then to the west, and that when they went to Jackson
          County, they would go from the west to the east. Mark my words,
          write them down, this people, as a Church and kingdom, will go
          from the west to the east. I can tell you more concerning what I
          saw upon natural principles; I saw that this people would have to
          gain a foothold, a strength, power, influence, and ability to
          walk by themselves and to take care of themselves, and power to
          contend with their enemies and overcome them, upon the same
          principle that the whites did when they first came to America and
          overcame the Indians. Many here do not know anything about the
          history of the early settling of America.
          New Orleans was one of the first places settled by the Europeans,
          after North America was discovered. St. Louis was settled long
          before New York, and in that region you can find apple trees two
          feet though, standing among the oaks which are several feet in
          diameter. Did the first settlers stay there? No, they were either
          killed or had to leave lest they should be killed, with the
          exception of a few of the Spaniards who intermarried and lived
          with the Indians. The whites had to leave and go down the
          Mississippi river, and went round into Maine and Massachusetts,
          and when they reached there the Indians said, "You are welcome to
          this land:" a region where they have thirteen months of winter
          during each year. I use that extravagant expression in order to
          convey an idea of the rigor of the climate; but you talk about
          hard winters and snows here; in comparison many of you know but
          little about them.
          I can pick up scores of Yankees here who have lived in countries
          where they could have fine orchards, and live like nabobs, and
          yet, in the winter season often ride in their sleighs over fences
          five feet high. I have rode over snow in the eastern states when
          it was fifteen feet deep. To return to the subject; I said, upon
          natural principles, that this people had to go to a country that
          the Gentiles do not desire. I can tell you another thing, when
          you see any member of this community wishing to withdraw and go
          to where there is a beautiful country--where it is easy to live,
          let me tell you that that man will apostatize, or be driven from
          his favorite locality: write that down brother George as the word
          of the Almighty.
          I have deed after deed of land for which I did not get a cent
          when I was obliged to leave it. I also built many houses in the
          states, they are there now, for ought I know; they will fall down
          some of these days, and I care not how quickly. This people can
          only gain strength upon the principle of fleeing to a country
          where the wicked will not live, and where they can gain strength
          enough to walk by themselves, and to go where they please. This
          is one of the truths of heaven.
          Whenever you see persons from this place on their way to a milder
          climate, seeking a better home, they will apostatize or be driven
          from their loved asylum; you may set that down for a fact. I saw
          that this people would have to flee into the mountains, and into
          a climate and country that the Gentiles would not desire. If we
          are not in such a place, I do not know where we will find one
          more undesirable than this. Do the Saints delight in this
          locality? No, it is repugnant to their feelings, if they could
          have their choice. Did I come here by choice, or was it not
          because I had to come? I like this country, and if it is not bare
          enough, cold and disagreeable enough, to those who wish to live
          in ease, we will find another location a little farther off. When
          we came here we were one thousand miles from everybody. Are you
          afraid of the Gentiles coming here? Should we all move from this
          city and give the Gentiles liberty to occupy our houses, our
          farms, &c., in five years you would not find them here; they
          could not live here, for this is not a place that would suit
          them. If this is not the place for us to dwell, it is not to be
          found in texas, in California, nor in old or new Mexico. Where is
          it then? That is not for me nor you to inquire about, but it will
          not be in any of those places. If we are not now in the right
          place, the Lord will lead us to where we can gather up our
          strength, and multiply and sanctify ourselves, so that we can go
          forth and serve the Lord with clean hands and pure hearts.
          I will now tell you a little more about the witnesses; I have
          strayed some from that point, but I never bind myself while I am
          with the brethren. If I were preaching abroad in the world I
          should feel myself somewhat obliged, through custom, to adhere to
          the wishes and feelings of the people in regard to pursuing the
          thread of any given subject, but here I feel as free as air. You
          have gathered the idea from me that it is not the miracles that
          are performed before a person's eyes that convince him that one
          is of God, or of the devil; yet, if the Lord designs that a
          person should heal the sick, that individual can do so; but is
          that to convince the wicked that the operator is sent of God? No,
          it is a blessing on the Saints, and the wicked have nothing to do
          with it, they have no business to hear of it; that is for the
          Saints, it is especially for their benefit, and theirs alone.
          What should the wicked hear? They should hear a man testify that
          Joseph Smith was and is a Prophet of God, that he was a good man,
          and that he did plant and establish the kingdom of God on the
          earth, and we know it. "How shall I know?" says one. By obeying
          the commandments given to you. The Lord has said, go into the
          waters of baptism and be baptized for the remission of your sins,
          and you shall receive a witness that I am telling you the truth.
          How? By baptism and the laying on of hands alone? No. By seeing
          the sick healed? No, but by the Spirit that shall come unto you
          through obedience, which will make you feel like little children,
          and cause you to delight in doing good, to love your father in
          heaven and the society of the righteous. Have you malice and
          wrath then? No, it is taken from you, and you feel like the child
          in its mother's lap. You will feel kind to your children, to you
          brothers and sisters, to your parents and neighbors, and to all
          around you; you will feel a glow, as of fire, burning within you.
          And if you open your mouths to talk you will declare ideas which
          you did not formerly think of; they will flow into your mind,
          even such as you have not thought of for years. The Scriptures
          will be opened to you, and you will see how clear and reasonable
          everything is which this or that Elder teaches you. Your hearts
          will be comforted, you can lie down and sleep in peace, and wake
          up with feelings as pleasant as the breezes of summer. This is a
          witness to you. You ask the Lord to heal you, or your sick child,
          and if He is disposed to do it He will, and if not it is all
          right. If He is disposed to open the heavens and give us a visit
          from an angel, it is all right. If He is disposed to reveal to
          us, by natural philosophy, what is going to take place, that is
          right. If He is disposed to show us by vision where this people
          are going, and when, all right, and it is right if He withholds
          that information.
          If, by the whispering of a small, still voice, He dictates you to
          do this or that, showing you which is right and which is wrong,
          it is all right, and it is right to acknowledge the hand of the
          Lord in His so doing.
          But if you had faith to go out to the graveyard and raise up
          scores of the dead, that alone would not make you Latter-day
          Saints, neither if the visions of your minds were opened so as to
          see the finger of God. What will? Keeping the commandments of the
          Lord, to walk humbly before your God, and before one another, to
          cease to do evil and learn to do well, and to live by every word
          that proceeds from the mouth of God; then you are a Latter-day
          Saint, whether you have visions or not. 
          You may be tried and cast down, and be inclined to say that the
          Lord has not revealed this or that to you, but that has nothing
          to do with me or you. I do not desire to dictate the Lord in that
          matter; all I have to do is to concern myself with the things He
          requires of me, for it is His right to pursue His own way, and
          take His own time and course in dealing with me. Can you gain a
          victory? You can.
          As I have told you, your spirit is continually warring with the
          flesh; you spirit dictates one way, your flesh suggests another,
          and this brings on the combat. What are you to do? You must bring
          the hands, the elbows, the feet, the tongue, and all the organs
          of speech and every power of the body into subjection.
          You must say that you will not swear, nor say or do anything
          which is wrong. An elder was cut off from the Church here last
          Sunday for swearing. What do I think of it? Time and time again
          have I requested the High Priests and Seventies to cut off such
          members of their several quorums as will break the Sabbath, and
          take the name of God in vain. I say sever them from the tree, for
          these loose and wicked characters hurt the tree. They are like
          dry limbs, and have become so decayed, that the moisture leaks
          through them, and seeks its way into the heart of the tree, and,
          by and bye, if we do not cut away such branches, the tree itself
          will die.
          I often think that the High Priests and Seventies dare not walk
          up strictly to this duty, and I am disposed, at times, to imagine
          that some of the presidents of those quorums are guilty of such
          things themselves.
          Bring the names of such men to this stand and I will cut them
          off, if no other person will, and ask no odds of the quorum, and
          you will go in with me. Bring the names of men who take the name
          of God in vain and do wrong in any way, and I will not ask for a
          High Council or Bishop's Court to deliberate on their case; I
          will sever them from the tree of life, and ask them what they are
          going to do about it. They will wither and die.
          You may try to make dead limbe grow on the tree, but such a
          practice is a detriment to the bearing of good fruit.
          I want to talk a little more about the witnesses. I am a
          witness--of what? I have told it here and in Nauvoo. I know what
          I am a witness of, and I know my Apostleship. I am a witness that
          Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God. What an uproar it would make
          in the Christian world to say, I am an Apostle of Joseph. Write
          it down, and write it back to your friends in the east, that I am
          an Apostle of Joseph Smith. He was a man of God and had the
          revelations of Jesus Christ, and the words of Jesus Christ to the
          people. He did build and establish the kingdom of God on earth,
          and through him the Lord Almighty again restored the Priesthood
          to the children of men.
          Brethren, I am a witness of that; not by my laying hands on the
          sick and they being healed, nor by the revelations which are
          given of him in the Bible, but by receiving the same Spirit and
          witness which the ancients received; by the visions of the
          heavens being opened to my mind; by my understanding that which
          is revealed in the Book of Mormon, and that which Joseph revealed
          as comprised in the Book of Doctrine and Covenants.
          I am a witness that those are the revelations of the Lord through
          Joseph Smith, in this the last dispensation for the gathering of
          the people; and all who reject my testimony will go to hell, so
          sure as there is one, no matter whether it be hot or cold; they
          will incur the displeasure of the Father and of the Son.
          I am a witness of this; and all who will hear the voice of the
          servants of God, pay attention to what they say, and obey the
          commandments given to the people, shall receive a testimony and
          know that we tell them the truth, that Joseph is a Prophet of
          God, and did actually finish the work which the Lord gave him to
          do, sealed his testimony with his blood, and has gone to dwell in
          the world of spirits, until he gets his body. All will have to
          acknowledge that this is true.
          There are many other things that might be noticed, and much more
          might be said upon this subject. I have merely hinted at the
          witness, at the privileges, blessings, and duties of the Saints,
          and at what makes a Saint, but I feel as though I had talked long
          enough, or as much as I should to-day. I have a bad cold, and
          could cough as well as the rest of you, but I have been enabled
          to refrain from coughing since I have been here, and during the
          brief time I have occupied while addressing you this morning.
          I hope and trust that we will order our lives so as to be worthy
          of the blessings promised to us, and live to the glory of God,
          that we may have a glorious resurrection, and enjoy each other's
          society in the kingdom of our God. This is our constant prayer
          concerning you, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Amasa
          M. Lyman, December 20, 1855
                          Amasa M. Lyman, December 20, 1855
           A Discourse by Elder Amasa Lyman, Delivered in Kaysville City,
                                 December 20, 1855.
                 Brethren and sisters, it gives me much gratification
          and joy to have the opportunity of meeting with you on this
          occasion. And probably there is no necessity for me to tell you
          why I am glad. You may be enabled to infer that, from what I may
          I have come not to tell you of any new things, or of any strange
          things. And I shall not take a text this evening, for this simple
          fact--that I once had a text given me to preach from, to preach
          on, and to preach about or to explain to the people; and I have
          been at work for the last twenty years, and I have not done
          preaching yet.
          We use to think that a man could preach the Gospel in one sermon,
          and explain all the prophecies, besides making a great many new
          ones. But I have learned better as I have grown older. I have
          found out to my astonishment, that instead of having preached all
          the Gospel, I have learned but very little of it yet;
          consequently I could not preach it all. I am a pupil in the
          school, but I have also been engaged by him who teaches me, to
          teach those of my fellow pupils, in the school, who have not
          advanced farther than I have.
          Now, the accomplishment of the objects for which the Gospel is
          preached, is a matter that presents itself to our minds. It is of
          the greatest importance. For men might preach the Gospel till
          there is not a people under heaven, who have not heard it; and
          they might return, and sit themselves down as having faithfully
          made this proclamation, and still there might be but very few
          saved; and there might have been but a very small work
          accomplished: for the extent of their salvation is in accordance
          with the amount of principle and truth which they have learned
          and obeyed.
          We talk about men being saved from sin, and then we get a
          Scriptural definition of what sin is. It is Scripturally a
          transgression of the law. Well, now, this leaves us just as dark
          as if there had been no Scripture. Then sin is a transgression of
          the law; but in order for us to fully comprehend the matter, we
          should know what the law is, so that we might know when we
          transgress it.
          Now, for our information, supposing we leave these things, and
          what we have read in books, and what was told us a great many
          years ago, and, in our own way of expressing what we do
          understand, let us reason together. We will reason together as if
          we were at the beginning, and said all that had been said, and
          done all that had been done.
          Well, now, so that we can understand what salvation is, we shall
          be enabled to comprehend the way in which we shall have to be
          saved. Salvation, like everything else, is something that we
          cannot make or create. We are not going to do one particle
          towards making it.
          Then we will lay down this, that we are not going to make
          anything, or destroy anything, in becoming saved. There will be
          no more truth in the world, after we are saved, than there is
          now. The sun will rise and set, and the works of Jehovah continue
          to be unchanged, and there will be no difference in things only
          in what will relate to ourselves. Jesus is said to be the author
          of our salvation, having learned certain things, and having
          clothed himself with his love of righteousness and obedience, he
          came to reveal that salvation to all the sons of earth, so that
          all might have an opportunity of deriving such advantages as it
          was calculated to bestow; therefore, he was the author and
          revealer of the Gospel.
          He said, he came unto his own, and his own received him not; but
          unto as many as did receive him, unto them gave he power to
          become the sons and daughters of God. And he gathered his
          disciples and Apostles around him, and taught them the truth that
          he himself comprehended: and he sent them forth, even as his
          Father had sent him forth. He said that he had come to do the
          will of his Father, and bear record of the truth. This was his
          testimony, and the object of his mission to earth. He taught his
          disciples this.
          Now, for the accomplishment of what purpose were these things to
          be taught? To bring salvation to the lost and fallen sons of
          earth, and to bestow upon them the gift of eternal life. Well,
          what is salvation? It is that which we learn in our every day
          life; it is what the school-boy learns at school.
          One of the old Apostles said, it is eternal life, to know the
          only true God, and Jesus Christ whom He has sent.
          Well, is this what it takes to become the sons and daughters of
          God? Yes. Then, how did the Apostles obtain this knowledge? I
          will tell you: Jesus said unto them, "Follow me:" and he took
          them up into the mountains, and there in secret he taught them
          the principles of truth. And as evidence that he thought they
          were learning, he enquired of Peter, and the other Apostles (when
          they came in; for ought I know, they had been out preaching, as
          the "Mormon" Elders do, and probably had baptized a thousand
          persons), who do men say that I am? Why, said they, "Some say
          that thou art John, others one of the Prophets."
          But, said Jesus, "Who do you say that I am, ye disciples of mine
          who have been laboring in the vineyard?" Says Peter, "Thou art
          the Christ, the Son of the living God." Then said he to Peter,
          "Thou art blessed, for flesh and blood has not revealed this unto
          thee, but my Father who is in heaven."
          The Apostles acquired knowledge as the result of their
          application to searching for it. Can you tell what change there
          was effected in these men? They were men just as we are now,
          subject to like passions; then this is just as interesting as
          anything we can look at; and we will not question for one moment
          in our minds, but that it all transpired just as the Bible
          relates it.
          Then what was the change in the condition of these men, I ask?
          When our Savior called them they were fishing, and they had never
          made the acquaintance of the Son of God; they knew nothing of
          him, or of his father who had sent him.
          It was his request that first attracted their attention, and we
          learn that subsequently they were sent forth as messengers to
          preach the Gospel to their fellow men. And what of all that?
          "Why," says one, "they had learned the things of God." Well, had
          they any more than learned them? What had happened them? Was
          there any difference with them, more than they knew a little more
          than they did before?
          The very first salvation that Peter was enabled to treasure up as
          his own property, was that he knew that Jesus was the Christ, the
          Son of the living God. It was the Spirit of God that revealed
          this unto him; and he continued to have the comprehension of
          truth, in addition to the truth which he had already learned; and
          that was all the difference there was with Peter or the rest of
          the Apostles.
          "But," says one, "did they not speak in tongues?" Yes, but they
          did not learn anything, unless there was an interpreter present.
          The Apostle Paul said, he had rather speak five words, with his
          understanding, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue.
          They also prophesied. And did they lean anything by that? Yes,
          because something was foretold, and they could understand what
          was said; and for this reason the Apostle Paul once said, "That
          he would to God that they were all Prophets." So he seems to have
          been a disciple to this doctrine--that the love and comprehension
          of truth was the principle that edified--that it was the
          principle that would fix and establish the palpable change in the
          condition of mankind.
          We read of the Apostles being in prison, and we read of their
          getting out of prison; but we do not find them telling of
          anything that constitutes eternal life, but the comprehending of
          "Well, but" says one, "is the truth that we comprehend anywhere,
          eternal life?" A man might comprehend a truth which would not
          effect a delineation of the Gospel; but this is eternal life--to
          know the only true God, and His Son Jesus Christ, whom He has
          sent. Then, according to this language, the knowing certain
          personages, or the comprehending certain truths, constitutes
          salvation. It is not simply to know that He exists; for a man
          might know that He exists, and still not be in a position to
          receive eternal life.
          Perhaps some of my scholars will get impatient to know what
          brother Lyman is wanting to get at. Well, I will comfort you with
          a little explanation. I want to show you that it is not merely
          the labor that you can perform, that will give you eternal life;
          I want you to understand that if you have eternal life, it will
          be when you comprehend the truth, so that it becomes your
          property; so that you can apply it--the same as it is when you
          have got money in your pocket, you can buy bread with it or
          anything else you want.
               You may sing, or pray, or just do what you please, but if
          you do not learn the truth, and fully comprehend it, you will
          fail to obtain salvation. I want you to understand this, that you
          may not waste yourselves away.
          I know the Saints do a great deal of labor, and they suffer a
          great deal at times; but I want to get you posted up in such a
          manner that you will see that you need not work and slave
          yourselves so awfully hard, thinking that it will bring you
          salvation; if you do, you will find after you get through, that
          you will be as bad as a man who was endeavoring to become a
          State's senator (if I mistake not, in California) in some of the
          recent political contests. The rival candidates, in connection
          with other friends, had used all their influence in order to gain
          the day. At length the election came off, and most of the returns
          were in, so that they thought the results were actually known;
          therefore, the one who imagined himself elected, made a great
          dinner, but just about the time the dinner was to come off, it
          was proved that his opponent was elected. How bad the poor man
          How will it be with us? for we do not expect to live here always.
          Why, we shall wake up to the comprehension of the fact, that we
          have not obtained the heaven or salvation we expected. Then, you
          see, we should have to wait like the Californian did, at least
          till another election.
          I want to have you discriminate between that which is salvation,
          and that which is not salvation. There is such a thing in the
          world as means, and the object that the means effect. The object
          and the means are two different things. I want you to learn this,
          that it is a comprehension of truth, treasured up in the mind and
          soul of man, and a just application of the same, that will save
          him. Just as far as you comprehend and practise truth, you are
          "Well," says one, "is this knowledge which you refer to, all that
          we have to gain and profit by in order to be saved?" I know of
          nothing else; I have nothing else to teach you.
          "But," says one, "I thought it was the doing of my duty that
          would save me; for instance, I am required to pay my tithing,
          whether ecclesiastical or municipal, or any other; besides this,
          I have to labor a considerable portion of my time; and I have to
          go and preach the Gospel, and call upon sinners to obey the
          truth; I verily thought that this had something to do with my
          salvation." Well, this has something to do with your salvation,
          but I do not want you, because you have been preaching the
          Gospel, and have returned again, to think that you are saved.
          Can we not understand that millions of men are laboring with all
          their powers, though they are not carrying out "Mormonism." They
          labor as much, and suffer as much as we do, and then they go down
          into the earth by thousands and millions, still there is not a
          soul of them that has gained eternal life; not a soul of them has
          gained salvation for their self-martyrdom; for many of them have
          been martyred?
          Well, now, what is the reason if suffering will exalt and save
          the Latter-day Saints, that it will not save and exalt the
          suffering millions who never knew anything about "Mormonism?" As
          I heard a Universal preacher say (the saying struck me when I
          heard it), that if we could find a plan that would save one man,
          we could find a plan that would save all men. Well, this is what
          we want; for if we can find a plan that has saved one, we can
          find the plan that has saved all that have been saved.
          If there is not developed in us the comprehension and correct
          practice of the truth, we shall fail to be saved. Our baptism for
          the remission of sins, followed by the laying on of hands, and
          our washings and anointings will not avail anything, if they are
          not followed by this development.
          If the lamp of eternal truth is not lighted in us--is not planted
          here--does not receive its strength here, all our efforts will be
          in vain. If the knowledge and light of eternal truth does not
          follow as the result of our toil, the ordinances that we receive,
          and all that is done to us will not save us. We may build cities
          with gold, adorned with splendor and magnificence, fit to receive
          the Son of God; it will be all the same.
          Nebuchadnezzar built a magnificent city, but was it the principle
          of salvation with him, or among his people? Was there one soul of
          them saved who built that great city? No, and instead of
          Nebuchadnezzar's going into heaven, he went into the pasture to
          feed with the cattle. And this is the way that it will be with
          you, if you do not toil right; instead of going into heaven, you
          will have to go into the pasture, as he did.
          This is a truthful illustration. Nebuchadnezzar held the command
          of millions of men, and he built magnificent cities and palaces;
          and we go to work on the same principle, and build cities; but we
          build them with coarse materials; of one portion we make a wall
          and of another portion we make a house. We are progressing to the
          splendor of what Nebuchadnezzar did, but we cannot look up to
          heaven and say here are a great many cities that we have made;
          but we can say here are a great many cities that we have
          commenced; but we are far richer than the king; for we have got
          that which will make us wise unto salvation.
          This is a part of my sermon, I have not preached to you about
          baptism for the remission of sins, and about the laying on of
          hands, and prophecy, and so forth.
          You can read about these things at home; consequently, you have
          no need for me to come here, and wear myself out in talking about
          them. I want to teach you something that you cannot read. If I
          had you in a school, I would not take more liberty with you. You
          are not saved by the truth till you know and obey it. In
          "Mormonism" there is A and B. Well, then, you will have to learn
          A and B and so forth. Do any of you remember learning your
          letters at home which your mother taught you? She would get some
          old book or other and say, well, my son, what is the first letter
          in this book? Why, he could not name it; she might just as well
          have asked the boy about the sun, as to ask him about that.
          The mother would say, well, that is A; then the little fellow
          would try to say so. After a little she would ask him to tell her
          again what A is, but the little fellow is just as dumb as before.
          Well, she tries him again, and after she has told him what it is,
          he says A; now he has learned something; he has learned to know
          the formation of the letter before him.
          I suppose I was not born into the world with a knowledge of my
          letters; hence I have had to learn them like the rest of you.
          Well, I want you to know that this is the way that we shall have
          to get salvation.
          The revelations tell us that intelligence was not created,
          neither can it be. Hence, what we have to do is to comprehend
          that which does exist. this explains the propriety and truth of
          the Lord's prayer. Now, says the Lord; "When you pray, pray in
          this manner--Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed bye thy name;
          thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth, as it is done in
          Well, what about this? Why, in the first place, we do not suppose
          that simply the using of these words would save anybody; for
          fathers and mothers very frequently learn their children this
          prayer, almost before they can talk, and they will repeat it till
          they are old enough to run away.
          I want you to see that here is one of the guide boards of the
          Gospel. We say, our Father who art in heaven. Now, what does this
          language imply? Why, it tells us that we have a Father in heaven,
          and that we are His children. The next tells us that He is holy:
          "Thy kingdom come; thy will be done on earth as it is done in
          heaven." We pray this, simply because we want His will to be done
          here, as it is done there.
          But we have only read one side of the guide board yet. Well,
          then, we now come to the asking of the Father for a peculiar
          favor; and we now say to Him, "Father, forgive us of all our
          sins, as we forgive those who trespass against us." Now, do you
          want to know how much He will forgive you? If you curse your
          neighbor because he has trespassed against you, get down and pray
          for your Father to curse you.
          Why, "But," says one, "I would not like to pray for God to curse
          me." I suppose you did not think that the Lord's prayer meant so
          much as this. Well, now, as you would have God deal with you, so
          deal with your neighbor.
          Now, we all would like the man on whom we trespass to forgive us,
          and then we suppose that God would forgive him, just as he has
          forgiven us. Our Savior said that we should forgive men when they
          trespass against us. And why? Because that is the way that God
          will do with us. We ought not to forget or neglect the first
          principles of the Gospel, but at the same time go on unto
          But have you left off you practical sins? for theory will do you
          no good; you may have all the knowledge you please, but it will
          do you no good until it defines the dignity of its character,
          until it becomes indelibly fixed in your minds. I want that you
          should learn this.
          Says one, "Is it not good for us to be baptized?" Yes. And it is
          also good to use the Lord's prayer; and when you ask forgiveness,
          the example given tells you the very course that you should adopt
          towards God, and towards all with whom you have anything to do.
          There is nothing you ought to be more particular about than this;
          when you say, father, forgive me, just make yourselves certain
          that you have forgiven your brother; and, if you have not
          forgiven your brother, when the expression is just about to fall
          from your lips, shut your mouth--make it a prisoner.
          Perhaps you will accuse me and say, "Why, we thought brother
          Lyman would tell us something new, that would entertain us."
          Well, I think I have been good company anyhow.
          When Jesus Christ came down here, he came as a character to be
          followed; he came in the character of a God; not as a simple boy,
          but to preach the Gospel. Well, then, what comes next? Did he
          tell the people to go to work and lay up bread for a year, or for
          ten years? or, did he tell them to ask for bread for to-morrow?
          No, he did not. Why? Because that is a day we know nothing about.
          Supposing we had been without bread for eight or nine days, and
          were to ask him for bread for to-morrow; what would He think of
          us? Why, just what you would think of your children, if they were
          to ask you for bread, with their hands full, and their mouths
          Then, if we have no bread, we ought to ask for this day our daily
          bread; for we do not know whether we shall want it to-morrow or
          not. Yesterday is past, and to-day is all that a man lives.
          Well, then, what comes next? "Thine be the power, and the glory,
          for ever and ever. Amen." We have now got through with the Lord's
          prayer, but I do not want you always to get through with it so
          soon; I do not care if you are a week about it. Most of you teach
          your children this form of prayer, before they can appreciate it.
          You can appreciate it, but they cannot. You teach them to say,
          "Our Father who art in heaven," without their having any rational
          supposition who He is, or whether He is anybody or nobody.
          There are some other things I want you to take into
          consideration. The ordinance of baptism is abused by a great
          many. Some of you get baptized a great many times; and what do
          you get baptized for? As long as I see you getting baptized for
          the remission of sins, I shall conclude that you are not saved.
          Well, now, you go down into the ordinance of baptism, and it is
          said that you are buried. Are you buried alive? A burial, of
          course, pre-supposes that somebody is dead. It is also said that
          we are to put off the old man of sin--the old garment that we
          have worn; and from that grave we are to rise unto newness of
          life, as toucheth the former conversation. We are not to act as
          we once acted, and do as we once did.
          Well, then, we are to be dead; but we are not to die as people
          generally die; for when they are dead, do they come back, and
          build cities, and do as they did before? It formerly took butter
          and cheese, and these good things to keep them alive; but when
          they die, this expense stops.
          Well, then, how shall it be with us in relation to our former
          existence? We were not Saints then; we said and did things which
          were wrong often, because we did not know that which was right.
          We should die unto sin and darkness, and learn the light, and
          live in it, and be dictated and governed by it.
          This is what baptism should teach us. Have you so read the
          guide-board? Simply telling us that we should die unto darkness
          and corruption, that we might live to immortality and eternal
          life, will not save us. If you have not read the guide-board so,
          you have not read it right.
          Those who have not been buried with Christ in baptism, and risen
          unto newness of life, and put off the old man of sin, they are
          living without the light; they are those who have never left the
          sable shades of darkness; they think wrong, they act wrong, and
          they go wrong, because they have not the light. They do not know
          the difference between that which is pure, and that which is not
          Perfection is not at the guide-board, but we can read it there,
          that this is the way that leads to it. But supposing you were to
          stay there, what would you accomplish? You would be perfectly
          bewildered, without any possibility of ever getting right. How
          foolish it would be for us to stay there and say, why, I cannot
          leave this; it first pointed out to me the way of life; and can I
          leave it now? No, I will live by it, and die by it.
          Is there any such a thing as this in "Mormonism?" No. "Mormonism"
          gives a man more than one wife. Ah! say some poor, half-hearted
          "Mormons," talk about a man's having more wives than one; now we
          know that the Church has all apostatized, and Brigham and the
          Twelve are all going wrong. Such poor wretches have got to the
          guide-board, and they want to stay there.
          The Saints who have the Spirit of light and truth, would shame to
          own that they are of the same race. As brother Kimball sometimes
          says, "Such persons are all puckered up; there is not as much of
          them as there used to be." All the difference there is between
          that kind of "Mormon" and us is, that we have passed beyond the
          first guide-board, and they have not. I want you to realize that
          there is a time for everything; there is a time for you to be
          baptized, and there is a time for you to put away things of
          childhood, and become men and women. There is a great difference
          between the guide-board which leads to salvation, and salvation
          itself. Says one, "I guess we understand it pretty well." I hope
          you do.
          Some years ago a text was given me to preach from, but I have not
          learned it all yet; but I am learning it as fast as I can, and
          preaching it; this is my mission. Other men might have missions
          of another kind.
          Says one, "Were you always an Apostle?" No. "Were you ordained an
          Apostle?" Yes. "What did that do for you?" It only connected me
          with twelve men; it did not give me any more knowledge, or make
          me any different.
          I have come to preach you the Gospel; and if I had thought that
          there was no necessity for so doing, and that you understood all
          about it, I would have stayed at home, or up at brother Allred's
          here, and enjoyed myself at the fire-side.
          It is my right to ordain people, but I shall not ordain you, but
          I will give you all a mission to teach this Gospel, that I have
          preached to you to-night, to your neighbors, and to yourselves;
          and examine yourselves, and see if you live the truth.
          I will tell you how to know. Do you know how much you would give
          for the truth last year? Says one, "I would give a tenth last
          year." Would you give any more now? "I do not really know. Why, I
          thought they only asked me for my tithing, and that that was all
          it was worth."
          Then you do not think it worth more now than you thought it worth
          last year. Well, now, what are you going to do? Are you going to
          swindle somebody out of nine-tenths of their salvation? You gave
          a tenth. What for? Why, you thought "Mormonism" worth that much;
          you considered it worth your tithing. Well, what are you going to
          get? You are going to get a tenth.
          I came into this kingdom to identify myself with all that I have,
          and all that I expect to have. You have given a tenth, and you
          expect to get a dollar, do you? Now, is there any good hard sense
          about that? "Well," says one, "what do you mean by treating the
          subject in this way?" Why, I want you to think of this, and not
          deceive yourselves by thinking that you will get a full salvation
          for paying a tenth; if you devote yourselves and all that you
          have for the cause of truth, you will merit the whole.
          I want you to learn that "Mormonism" is worth everything; that it
          is all there is of life--that it is all there is of truth--that
          it is all there is of everything that is worth having; and you
          will then comprehend, as I do, that to merit it, you will have to
          throw in all that you have got.
          You cannot do more for the truth than it is worth: then come
          forward and consecrate your property. Says one, "What will it do
          for me, if I do?" Do you not say, that "Mormonism" is worth
          everything? Yes; but you will only pay a tenth for it. Then here
          you have got the bars up.
          May God bless you and me with His Holy Spirit, that we may be led
          into all truth, and fully comprehend and appreciate that
          salvation which we seek, is my prayer, in the name of Jesus
          Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, March 2, 1856
                            Brigham Young, March 2, 1856
                             WHICH HAS BEEN GIVEN THEM.
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 2, 1856.
          I have many subjects that I would like to speak upon for the
          benefit of the Saints, and one thing in particular I should like
          to do for them, which I believe would be the greatest blessing
          that could be bestowed upon them, and that is to give you eyes
          with which to see things as they are. If I had power to bestow
          that description of sight upon the Latter-day Saints, I do not
          believe that there is a man or woman but what would try to live
          their religion.
          Some might suppose that it would be a great blessing to be taken
          and carried directly into heaven and there set down, but in
          reality that would be no blessing to such persons; they could not
          reap a full reward, could not enjoy the glory of the kingdom, and
          could not comprehend and abide the light thereof, but it would be
          to them a hell intolerable, and I suppose would consume them much
          quicker than would hell fire. It would be no blessing to you to
          be carried into the celestial kingdom, and obliged to stay
          therein, unless you were prepared to dwell there.
          If people had eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to understand
          things as they are, it would prove a blessing to them, for they
          would then order their lives in a manner to secure the blessings
          which they anticipate. However, it is out of my power to thus
          bless this people, but the gift has been placed within the reach
          of every person by the purchase of the Son of God, and it is for
          them to obtain it, or to pass along without obtaining it, just as
          they may choose. But some facts are easily comprehended; take the
          Latter-day Saints and compare their feelings, lives, and doings
          with those of the world, and what will be readily discovered?
          Were any of you now to go forth into the world, if you had one
          spark of honesty or of virtue about you, you would desire to
          return as soon as duty would permit, and would exclaim, "I had no
          idea that the world was as I found it to be." Many of our Elders
          exclaim, on their return from foreign missions, "How wicked the
          world has got to be! They are growing worse and worse, and go
          rapidly from bad to worse." I have heard them exclaim, "It was
          astonishing to see how the people could so alter in the course of
          two or three years!"
          On this point I will remark that the Elders rapidly alter one
          way, and the people of the world alter directly the other way,
          thus the space between them increases much faster than we are apt
          to be aware of. Elders who go forth to proclaim the Gospel,
          unless they do something to clip their faith, or cause them to
          apostatize from their religion, so that they are left in the
          dark, are generally on the increase in improvement, grow in grace
          and in the knowledge of the truth, and gather to themselves more
          knowledge than they had before they went on their mission. They
          are advancing in the principles of truth, while the world are
          receding from the truth they once had; consequently, it appears
          to the Elders, and to those who go from the Saints into the
          world, that it is growing wicked faster than it really is, and
          the Elders do not always realize that their advancement in truth
          produces much of the appearance of the great distance between
          them and the world.
          If many of this congregation knew, if they had eyes to see, and
          ears to hear, they would often be ashamed of their conduct, when
          contrasted with all the light that has been manifested in the
          Gospel of salvation revealed to us. We have heard Joseph the
          Prophet preach, have seen his face, and have the revelations
          given through him, and the manifestations of the Holy Spirit; we
          have knowledge, we have the living oracles in our midst, and with
          all this let me say to the Latter-day Saints that they stand upon
          slippery places. They do not all fully know the paths they walk
          in, they do not all perfectly understand their own ways and
          doings, many do not altogether realize their own weaknesses, do
          not understand the power of the devil and how liable they are to
          be decoyed one hair's breadth, to begin with, from the line of
          truth. They are first drawn by a fine line, in a little time it
          becomes a cord, it soon increases to a strong rope, and from that
          to a cable; thus it grows from the size of a spider's web, in
          Let a Saint diverge from the path of truth and rectitude, in the
          least, no matter in what, it may be in a deal with his neighbor,
          in lusting after that which is not in his possession, in
          neglecting his duty, in having an over anxiety for something he
          should not be anxious about in being a little distrustful with
          regard to the providences of God, in entertaining a misgiving in
          his heart and feeling with regard to the hand of the Lord towards
          him, and his mind will begin to be darkened.
          Brother Amasa Lyman has just observed, that some say "I suppose
          we must acknowledge the hand of God in all things." There is no
          supposition with as me to that matter, we can do as we please
          about it; but we have to confess or be chastised until we know
          and understand how things are, and realize that the Lord God is
          with us, in our midst and around about us, by His angels, by His
          Spirit, and by His eye which searches and researches our hearts.
          If He is not here in person, He is conversant with our actions,
          and scans every thought of our hearts and every action of our
          lives. He is in our midst, and we might as well begin to think
          about it first as last.
          If there is a misgiving in the heart with regard to confidence in
          our God, do you not see that there is a chance for one to slide a
          hair's breadth from the truth? This gives power to the enemy, and
          if we are decoyed in the least from the path of duty, do you not
          perceive that it produces darkness? Do you not understand that,
          in your experience? Yes, every Saint does. If you become dark, do
          you not know that the enemy has still greater power to decoy you
          further from the path? Then how soon the people would go to
          destruction, how soon they would go to ruin!
          I will tell you what this people need, with regard to preaching;
          you need, figuratively, to have it rain pitchforks, tines
          downwards, from this pulpit, Sunday after Sunday. Instead of the
          smooth, beautiful, sweet, still, silk-velvet-lipped preaching,
          you should have sermons like peals of thunder, and perhaps we
          then can get the scales from our eyes. This style is necessary in
          order to save many of this people. Give them smooth preaching,
          and let them glide along in their own desires and wishes, and
          they will follow after the traditions of their forefathers and
          the inclinations of their own wicked hearts, and give way to
          temptation, little by little, until, by and bye, they are ripe
          for destruction.
          If I could take away the vail, and let you see how things really
          are, you would then know just as well as I know, and I know them
          just as well as any man on the face of the earth need to. I would
          not ask for a particle more knowledge upon that subject than I
          now have in my possession, were I capable of imparting it to this
          people, until we improve upon what knowledge we already possess.
          I know the condition of this people, I know what induces them to
          do as they do, I know the secret springs to their actions, how
          they are beset, the temptations and evils that are around them,
          and how liable they are to be drawn away, consequently, I tell
          you, brethren, that you need to have the thunders of the Almighty
          and the forked lightnings of truth sent upon you, to wake you up
          out of your lethargy.
          Some may say, "Brother Brigham always chastises us." But what do
          I tell you? I say that if there are any Saints on earth they are
          here, if the kingdom of God is on the earth it is here, if Jesus
          is not known here, he is not known upon the earth, if his Father
          is not known here, He is not known upon the earth. What of all
          this? If we have this knowledge greater is the shame, unless we
          live to it, and greater will be our condemnation. The people
          should be preached to, but they need something besides smooth
          teaching. Comparatively speaking, they should have their ears
          cuffed and be roughly handled, be kicked out doors, and then
          kicked in again. Most of the Elders who preach in this stand
          ought to be kicked out of it, and then kicked into it again,
          until they overhaul themselves and find out what is the matter
          with them.
          The mass of the people are all asleep together, craving after the
          world, running after wickedness, desiring this, that, and the
          other, which is not for their good.
          You hear many talk about having made sacrifices; if I had that
          word in my vocabulary I would blot it out. I have never yet made
          what I call sacrifices; in my experience I know nothing about
          making them. We are here in this wicked world, a world shrouded
          in darkness, principally led, directed, governed, and controlled,
          from first to last, by the power of our common foe--him who was
          opposed to Jesus Christ and to his kingdom--the son of the
          morning--the devil. Lucifer has almost the entire control over
          the whole earth, rules and governs the children of men and leads
          them on to destruction. He has millions and millions of agents;
          they are in every place, the air is full of them and the earth is
          full of them. You cannot go anywhere without finding some of
          them, unless it is among a few of the Saints who have faith to
          turn them out of their hearts and affections, out of their
          houses, and then out of their midst.
          There are a few such places on the earth, but they are very few,
          compared with all the world beside. The world is drunk with its
          own folly, with its own wickedness.
          I know that I spoke very harshly to you last Sabbath, but that
          does not hurt the oil and the wine; no, not one particle. There
          was not a Latter-day Saint then within hearing of my voice but
          that his soul shouted, "Amen, thank God, glory, hallelujah." You
          need such preaching as was that, from day to day, until the
          rubbish cleaving to you is swept away, until your minds are upon
          something beside the follies and vanities of the world. You have
          much to learn. Do you think I was too rash last Sunday? (Voices,
          no.) Even then I told you only a small portion of the truths
          pertaining to the subjects touched upon.
          I cannot tell you the whole truth, for you are not in a condition
          to receive it; my voice is not powerful enough to pierce your
          hearts; I alone am not able to remove the scales from your eyes
          that you may see things as they are. I can talk to you here, and
          diffuse my spirit among you, so far as you will receive it. If I
          have the Spirit of the Lord, and your hearts are soft, I can
          impart to you what the Lord has for you through me; that is all I
          can do. I have to cling to my Father, to my God, and to my
          religion every day, yes, every moment of my life; have to plead
          with Him and centre all my confidence, hopes, and faith in Him,
          and so should you.
          There is one thing I desire of this people more than everything
          else on this earth, more than gold, silver, houses, lands, and
          the riches of this world which are not to compare with it, and
          that is that this people would so live as to know the Father and
          the Son, to know the will of God concerning them, and to be
          filled with the Holy Ghost, and have the visions of eternity
          opened to them. Then my soul would be satisfied; that is all I
          could ask of them. I do not care whether we have half rations, or
          quarter rations, that is a matter I care but little about. I
          would rather that this people should starve to death in the
          mountains, than to have the Lord Almighty hand us over to a
          cursed, infernal mob. I would rather go down to the grave in
          peace than to fight a mob, unless the Lord would give me enough
          Saints to fight and kill the poor devils; in such case I wish to
          live and fight them. But I never want to see a mob again drive
          and tread under foot the Saints.
          While brother Amasa was addressing the people, I admired the
          principles he taught, and I can apply them to myself, so far as
          they pertain to me; but I do not know how my little boys and
          girls, now growing up in our midst, could understand what is in
          the world, unless we sent them forth so that they could contrast
          one class with the other. For my part I do not need a mob to aid
          me to purify myself; I do not require to hear another man take
          the name of God in vain, in order to complete my experience
          concerning profanity. I have no occasion for the devil and his
          imps, nor to see the face of a wicked man while I live, in order
          to make me more acquainted with their power. I will be perfectly
          satisfied with the glory and crown I shall receive, if I have no
          further acquaintance or experience with the power of the devil,
          so far as I am concerned.
          If I have to pass through scenes of trouble, sorrow, and
          affliction, if we have to fight the devil, and I have the power
          to live, I pray my Father in heaven, in the name of His Son Jesus
          Christ, to let me live to enjoy this privilege. If I, of
          necessity must pass, through war and bloodshed, toils and labors,
          let me live, for I love to fight the devils, but I love to
          overcome them. If I had the power I would doubtless use them up,
          perhaps to the injury of the Saints. Why? Because if you do not
          know wickedness you cannot enjoy the happiness God has in store
          for you.
          Paul asks, "Shall we sin that righteousness may abound?" No,
          there is plenty of sin without your sinning. We can have all the
          experience we need, without sinning ourselves, therefore we will
          not sin that good may come, we will not transgress the law of God
          that we may know the opposite. There is no necessity for such a
          course, for the world is full of transgression, and this people
          need not mingle up with it.
          Can you discern between the righteous and the wicked here? You
          know I have spoken of a certain class of men who frequent our law
          shops, and every other wicked hole they can get into; can they
          discern the difference between those who love the law of God and
          those who despise it? No. The vilest sinner on the earth who will
          come with a bland countenance, using the airs that belong to the
          etiquette of the day, you receive as a very fine man, a beautiful
          gentleman. Do you not know that you need the Spirit of the
          Almighty to look through a man and discern what is in his heart,
          while his face smiles upon you and his words flow as smoothly as
          oil? If you had the power of God upon you, you might see the
          sword lurking within him, and that, if he had the power, he would
          plunge it in your heart and destroy you from the earth. I meet
          many such men in these streets, and in the houses round about.
          Do you not know that Jesus told the truth when he said, "They
          what are not for us are against us?" A great many have our
          patronage and influence, benefit by our forbearance, and enrich
          themselves with our cash, but when that is gone, what shall we
          hear next? "Wipe them from the earth, put them out of existence
          and let the earth not be infested with them any longer, for they
          have no money, no influence for us now; they cannot patronize and
          promote us, therefore destroy them from the earth." That is the
          spirit of the devil which reigns in every man who is not a saint
          at heart. This wicked principle may lay dormant, to all
          appearance, year after year, lurking in the flesh, until it
          increases to such a degree that the flesh has overcome the spirit
          of light which God implanted in them, when it exhibits itself,
          and then the cry is, "Destroy the Apostles of Jesus and every one
          of his true followers; root out that clan which will destroy us
          unless we destroy them; root them out, that we be no more
          pestered with them."
          Suppose one of my brethren had a large family connection, had
          many brothers and sisters near and dear to him, as near his
          feelings as a child is to its father's or mother's, and that this
          blood connection, embracing all the friends he had upon earth,
          should, on a night so dark that they could not see one inch
          before their eyes, mount their horses, put spurs to them, and
          start at the top of their speed, on a road that neither they nor
          their horses had ever travelled one inch upon, would he not cry
          at the top of his voice, "Where are you going?" Would he not say,
          "You are riding in the dark and on a road which you do not know?"
          They might put spurs in their horses and reply, "We will perform
          the journey." You are the individuals I am referring to. Let any
          one see people hastening to the brink of an awful precipice,
          hundreds of feet in depth, and before they are aware of it, about
          to leap into the abyss, what feelings would move the individual
          looking upon such a sight? Would he not wish to take them by the
          hair of their heads, if they would not stop, and save them if
          So I fell about you. I feel like taking men and women by the hair
          of their heads, figuratively speaking, and slinging them miles
          and miles, and like crying, stop, before you ruin yourselves! But
          I have not the power to do this; I can talk to you a little and
          can beseech you to stop your mad career, and can ask your Father
          in heaven to give you the light of His Spirit, and when you
          receive that you will find every word that I said last Sabbath to
          be true. There are men here, by the score, who do not know their
          right hands from their left, so far as the principle of justice
          is concerned. Does our High Council? No, for they will let men
          throw dust in their eyes, until you cannot find the hundredth
          millionth part of an ounce of common sense in them. You may go to
          the Bishops' courts, and what are they? A set of old grannies.
          They cannot judge a case pending between two old women, to say
          nothing of a case between man and man. We have already dropped
          many of them, and we are picking up young men. We will train
          them, and tell them to serve God or apostatize.
          The time is coming when justice will be laid to the line and
          righteousness to the plummet; when we shall take the old broad
          sword and ask, "Are you for God?" and if you are not heartily on
          the Lord's side, you will be hewn down. I feel like reproving
          you; you are like a wild ass that rears and almost breaks his
          neck before he will be tamed. It is so with this people.
          Have we not given you salt enough to season you? You have been
          sweetened with velvet lips, until you do not know salt from
          anything else. Will you hear now? If I have strength and continue
          to feel like it, I will come here and train you every Sabbath,
          and I wish my sermons to be like the raining of pitchforks point
          foremost, until you awake out of your sleep and find out whether
          you are Saints or not. We have a great many gars, sharks,
          sheepheads, lamper-eels, and every other kind of fish that is to
          be found, in the pond; the Gospel net has gathered them up, and
          what may you expect from such a mess? You may expect the best and
          worst of all God's creation mingled here together. The foolish
          will turn from correct principles, go over to the wicked, and
          cease to be righteous, so that they can go to hell with the
          fools. I wish to have every man who rises to speak from this
          stand, lay aside the smooth tongue and velvet lips and let his
          words be like melted lead, that they may sink into the hearts of
          the people.
          Now do not think that I have cast you off; you are my brethren,
          if I have any. If there are any Saints on the face of the earth
          they are here. I am one with you, and if you turn round and say,
          "Brother Brigham ought to live according to his preaching," I
          answer, I live so now that you cannot keep up with me. Do not
          fret yourselves, I am ready to be weighed in the balance in all
          my ways, with any of you. Learn to live your religion day by day,
          and do right all the time. Let us strive to get more light, more
          of the grace and power of God, that we may increase therein,
          which is my prayer continually. May God bless you: Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, March 2, 1856
                           Heber C. Kimball, March 2, 1856
                          EVIL SPIRITS, AND OF HOLY ANGELS.
             A Discourse by President Heber C. Kimball, Delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 2, 1856.
          I wish you to understand and observe what brother Brigham taught
          here this forenoon. I can say, from knowledge and experience,
          that every word was true, and, in my humble opinion, he
          truthfully portrayed the situation in which this people are at
          the present time, that is, in a careless, stupid condition. I
          know this from my own feelings, when I stand before this
          congregation. If you were filled with light, even the light of
          Christ, I know that I should be constantly inspired by the Holy
          Ghost, to speak according to the light which is in this people.
          But it is not so, therefore there is a hindrance to bringing
          forth light and truth, much more abundantly than they are
          The present is a peculiar time, many people are frightened at
          their condition, and we discover that it is almost universally
          so; it is tight times. Am I sorry? No, I have never seen anything
          transpire in these valleys that has given me more satisfaction
          than do the times that we now see. If you will reflect for one
          moment, you will remember that the scenery we are now passing
          through was predicted more than three years past. If this people
          had observed the counsel that was given to them from time to
          time, would any of you have been placed in the straightened
          circumstances you are in this day? No, you would not.
          When brother Brigham and myself, with a hundred and forty one
          men, came into this valley nearly nine years ago, he proclaimed
          the propriety of this people laying up their grain for a time to
          come, a time of scarcity, and a time has come. He said there
          would be a time when it would be one of the greatest temporal
          blessings, for this people to have wheat in their store-houses.
          You have been warned before hand, and that by revelation from God
          through Joseph Smith, and afterward through brother Brigham who
          is our Prophet, you have been warned, time and time again, to
          take care of your grain. In future build yourselves good
          store-houses and save your grain for a time of famine, and
          sickness, and death upon the nations of the wicked, to get rid of
          the evil doers. I have noticed those predictions, I have
          reflected upon them ever since they were told us.
          There will not many calamities come upon the nations of the
          earth, until this people first feel their effects, and when hard
          times commence they will begin at the house of God, and if there
          is any house of God on the earth, where is it? It is here, is it
          not? It is where the people have assembled together according to
          the commandments of the Almighty. We have got to feel the effects
          of these things, and if we do so patiently it will be good for
          us. No serious loss or injury will arise from calamities, if we
          do as we are told.
          Take this people as a people, throughout the valleys of the
          mountains, and I presume that they are the best people upon the
          face of the earth, and even here there is hardly a person but
          what takes a course to live from hand to mouth, that is, they
          will never lay up anything. This course will not answer for us,
          we must lay up grain against the famines that will prevail upon
          the earth. What shall we lay up that grain for? Shall we lay it
          up to feed the wicked? No, we shall lay it up to feed the Saints
          who gather here from all the nations of the earth, and for the
          millions of lovers of good and wholesome laws who will come from
          the old countries and from the United States, fleeing to this
          place for their bread, and I know it.
          How much have you got to feed them on now? We talk about those in
          the household of faith, and those who are inclined to serve the
          Lord, they will be the ones to suffer first. The Spirit has been
          in my heart all the time, and when the drouth came I laid up all
          the wheat that I could get in my mill by toll, and never used any
          for horses or cattle, but kept it to feed my laborers and my
          family. I have now dealt it out until I have nearly used it up,
          and I have not sold it for money. I have not sold twenty-five
          dollars worth of grain during the past year, but I have let my
          brethren have it, and kept it to sustain my family.
          Let us all take such a course, and in future raise an abundance
          of grain, and save ourselves from the dilemma which we will
          otherwise fall into. It is necessary for you to understand and
          comprehend these things, and I wish you to understand them for
          yourselves; I can only act for one. When I lay up grain and
          others do not, I cannot let them starve to death, it is not in me
          to do that, but it is a pretty difficult position to be placed
          in. When we attempt to draw the line of distinction between right
          and wrong, it is unpleasant to have individuals among us who will
          lie for a pound of flour. When we know such individuals is it
          right for me to give flour to them? No, it is not right for me to
          give it to any one, only in exchange for something else, except
          under certain circumstances.
          In the Bible Jesus uses a parable concerning talents which were
          delivered to different individuals, with instructions to go and
          improve upon them, to put them to use that they might increase
          upon that capital. In due time the Lord called upon those men to
          whom he gave the talents, and the one who had received one talent
          had hid it, but the others had put theirs to use, and received
          their reward accordingly. This is the way in which we have got to
          prove ourselves, and we have got to be tested and become suitable
          for governors, to govern others and to control our families, and
          then to control nations and kingdoms.
          Have I not worked as hard as any of you for my living? Who ever
          saw me indolent, or idling away my time around street corners, or
          about the Council House? No one, either of the living or dead. I
          am always busy in striving to adorn my plantation, and my works
          show it all the time. I am not preaching anything but what I
          practise. Does brother Brigham preach anything but what he
          practises? No, he practises it night and day, and is just as
          virtuous and pure before his family as he is when he is before
          the public, and I would not give a dime for a man who is not.
          Does not the Almighty know all these things? Some may think that
          the Almighty does not see their doings, but if He does not, the
          angels and ministering spirits do. They see you and your works,
          and I have no doubt but they occasionally communicate your
          conduct to the Father, or to the Son, or to Joseph, or to Peter,
          or to some one who holds the keys in connection with them.
          Perhaps there are some who do not believe much in spirits, but I
          know that they exist and visit the earth, and I will tell you how
          and why I know it.
          When I was in England, brother Geo. D. Watt was the first man
          baptized, and his mother was baptized directly after he was. The
          night previous to my going forward to baptize brother Watt and
          eight others, I had a vision, as old father Baker used to say,
          "of the infernal world." I saw legions of wicked spirits that
          night, as plain as I now see you, and they came as near to me as
          you now are, and company after company of them rushed towards me;
          and brother Hyde and brother Richards also saw them. It was near
          the break of day, and I looked upon them as I now look upon you.
          They came when I was laying hands upon brother Russell, the
          wicked spirits got him to the door of the room, I did not see
          them till after that took place, and soon afterwards I lay
          prostrate upon the floor. That was in England, pious England, in
          the little town of Preston, at the corner of Wilford Street, and
          they struggled and exerted all their power and influence. That
          was the first introduction of the Gospel into England, and I was
          shown those spirits as plainly as ever I saw anything. I was
          thinking of that circumstance while brother Brigham was speaking
          this morning, and I was thinking that those spirits were just as
          much on hand to perplex this people as they were on hand there. I
          saw their hands, their eyes, and every feature of their faces,
          the hair on their heads, and their ears, in short they had
          full-formed bodies.
          If evil spirits could come to me, cannot ministering spirits and
          angels also come from God? Of course they can, and there are
          thousands of them, and I wish you to understand this, and that
          they can rush as an army going to battle, for the evil spirits
          came upon me and brother Hyde in that way. There is one
          circumstance in the visit of those evil spirits, that I would not
          tell if brother Hyde had not often told it himself; they spoke
          and said to brother Hyde, "We have nothing against you," no, but
          I was the lad that they were after. I mention this to show that
          the devil is an enemy to me, he is also an enemy to brother
          Brigham, to brother Jedediah, to the Twelve, and to every
          righteous man. When brother Benson goes to the old country he
          will find hosts of evil spirits, and he will know more about the
          devil than he ever did before. The spirits of the wicked, who
          have died for thousands of years past, are at war with the Saints
          of God upon the earth. Do I ever pray that I may see them again?
          No, I do not. We had prayed all day, and almost all night, that
          we might have power to establish the Gospel in England. Previous
          to this, Mr. Fielding, a clergyman, came and forbid my baptizing
          those persons who had come forward. Said I, sir, they are of age,
          and I shall baptize them, if they wish for it, and I baptized
          nine. The next morning I was so weak that I could scarcely stand,
          so great was the effect that those spirits had upon me. I wrote a
          few words to my wife about the matter, and brother Joseph called
          upon her for the letter and said, "It was a choice jewel, and a
          testimony that the Gospel was planted in a strange land."
          When I returned home I called upon bother Joseph, and we walked
          down the bank of the river. He there told me what contests he had
          had with the devil; he told me that he had contests with the
          devil, face to face. He also told me how he was handled and
          afflicted by the devil, and said, he had known circumstances
          where Elder Rigdon was pulled out of bed three times in one
          night. After all this some persons will say to me, that there are
          no evil spirits. I tell you they are thicker than the "Mormons"
          are in this country, but the Lord has said that there are more
          for us than there can be against us. "Who are they," says one?
          Righteous men who have been upon the earth.
          But do you suppose that angels will pay friendly visits to those
          who do not live up to their privileges? Would you? No, you would
          not like to visit with persons who lie, and steal your goods, and
          borrow and never pay. Would not you forsake such persons? Yes,
          you would. Will the Holy Ghost dwell with a man who will lie,
          steal, and swear? No. It is written that where the Holy Ghost
          takes up its abode the Father and Son will come and abide. That
          is the God whom I serve, one who has millions of angels at His
          command. Do you suppose that there are any angels here to-day? I
          would not wonder if there were ten times more angels here than
          people. We do not see them, but they are here watching us, and
          are anxious for our salvation. Will one out of twenty of those
          who are here to-day go through the gates into the celestial City?
          As I told some to-day, when passing through the gate at noon,
          when you go to the straight gate that we read of, you will not go
          though there crowding by hundreds as you do now, the righteous
          and wicked all mixed up together; you cannot go into the
          celestial world unless you are sanctified through the celestial
          law. Do you not think that it will require faith, repentance, and
          baptism, to enable you to get through the celestial gates? Yes,
          and it will require obedience to every word that proceeds from
          the mouth of God. 
          There are many who will feed the ungodly sooner than the Saints,
          but I tell you I will feed the Saints first and the poor devils
          afterwards, if there is any to spare. But none of them should
          have food unless they worked for it. I am expressing some of my
          feelings, and speaking of some of my actual knowledge of things,
          temporal and spiritual. The Lord has hosts of angels who are
          qualified to defend us, and they have information enough to march
          armies and to select leaders to lead them against the enemy of
          the Saints; and the devil has leaders enough to march his armies
          against the Saints.
          If men and women do not qualify themselves and become sanctified
          and purified in this life, they will go into a world of spirits
          where they will have a greater contest with the devils than ever
          you had with them here. It will not be fifty years, perhaps,
          before all of us here to day will leave this state of existence,
          and then you will prove whether brother Brigham and the rest of
          the brethren have told you truth or not. You know that the world
          has made a great deal of fuss, and told many lies about the devil
          pitching on to Joseph Smith when he went to get the plates, but
          they will get to a place where the devils will handle them worse
          than they did Joseph when he got the plates; if they do not
          embrace the Gospel it will be so.
          Let us repent and forsake our sins and turn our hearts to our
          God, every one of us. I have said a thousand times, if I was to
          die now, to-day, I could not do better than I have done, still I
          have my weaknesses. But I don't go and sell my grain to the
          Gentiles, and then say that my family are on rations. If there
          are men who have done so, they will see sorrow and I know it.
          Shall we turn unto the Lord with all our hearts, and deal justly,
          do as we would wish another to do to us? Methinks every heart
          says, "Yes, we will go to work and try, if we die in the
          My heart is in "Mormonism;" it is my joy, and I have no joy in
          anything else. I have no pride in gold or silver, if I had I
          should take the dimes for my flour. If I have any food to spare I
          will hand it to the Bishop, and let him hand it to those who are
          destitute. This is what I believe in doing, and I wish others to
          do so too. If our Bishops do not attend to their duties, in these
          and all other matters, we shall drop them when conference comes;
          I say we, because we shall all take a hand in it. Now mark it.
          Our Bishops on Juries--under the dictation of those spirits that
          are in courts! I cannot stay in such places, they are so
          obnoxious to me. Men will make lawsuits, brother go to law with
          brother. Does this agree with the word of God? Does this agree
          with the word of Jesus, or with the words of the Prophets? No,
          and it is a set of poor devils that will do so, and by so doing
          they have taken a course by which they have forfeited their right
          and title as members of this Church and kingdom. Do you wish me
          to talk softly? If you do, I must be made another man. Let me be
          made an instrument in the hands of God to play the tune which He
          influences me to play; that is my way. There are not many who
          dare do this; they have not got force enough in them, nor
          intelligence enough, they do not know enough about God.
          I am ready, when the time comes, for the line to be drawn, and
          the ax to be laid at the root of every tree which does not bear
          good fruit.
          I stick to "Mormonism," and I pray God that it may stick to me. I
          wish to take a course to love and fear God, that when I bow
          before Him to ask for His Holy Spirit, I may have the communion
          thereof. Do I have that communion? I do, day by day, and I am not
          satisfied without it. If I get into a bad humor, the first thing
          I do is to pray; and I never am so angry but that I can pray.
          Often, in the town of Mendon, N. Y., when I went out to pray, it
          seemed as though there were hosts of devils trying to stop me;
          they did not wish me to become a "Mormon." Have I ever been sorry
          that I became a "Mormon?" Have I ever regretted it? No, never for
          one moment. I may be asked whether I know Joseph Smith was a
          Prophet; yes, I know it just as well as I do that you are sitting
          before me this day; and I also know that brother Brigham is his
          successor, and that I am his brother. Do not try to get between
          him and me, nor between me and brother Jedediah, if you do your
          toes will be pinched. I wish men to keep round about us to
          encircle us with their love and kindness, but not to get between
          us, for we intend to stand by each other to death. This is our
          integrity, and God ever help us to be one, and also the Twelve
          Apostles of Jesus Christ, and every Latter-day Saint, that we may
          all be one with Joseph, as is Joseph with Peter, and Peter with
          Jesus, and Jesus with his Father. This is the connection that we
          hold in the holy Priesthood. 
          Do any wish to destroy the union that exists among this people? I
          am opposed to every one who tries to do so, and so is every true
          Saint, and those who dwell here and in the heavens will say,
          Amen. I am an enemy to the devil and all his imps, and to all who
          come here to make merchandise of the Saints of God. I know that
          men come here and act on a principle of policy to get trade, but
          with us dollars and dimes are not objects of worship, for we love
          to deal with the true principles of righteousness. Let us go to
          work, every man, woman, and child, and strive to fill these
          valleys of the mountains with corn, wheat, potatoes, beets, and
          vegetables of every kind, that, when another fall comes, we may
          be able to say that we have food in abundance, as well as
          sealings and marriages. I will say a few words about divorces, do
          they prove that you are loving men and women, having your prayers
          ascend to God? No, but they prove that you are contending with
          each other. However, I presume that such cases will occur, that
          people will keep apostatizing until the Savior comes, and he says
          that even then they of the kingdom will be like ten virgins, five
          wise and five foolish.
          Take the counsel that you have heard to-day and last Sunday. Stop
          your lawing one with another, your quarrelling one with another,
          and let all cease to do evil, and then will not the angels
          rejoice? Well, God have mercy upon you all and save you from your
          follies, that you may be His in time, and His in eternity, which
          is the prayer of you unworthy servant, in the name of Jesus
          Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 /
          Jedediah M. Grant, March 2, 1856
                          Jedediah M. Grant, March 2, 1856
                         THREATENING THE SAINTS WITH UNITED 
               A Discourse by President J. M. Grant, Delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 2, 1856.
          By Elder Kimball's request, I will occupy a short time.
          I have mediated considerably upon the spirit manifested through
          our President last Sabbath and to-day, and also upon that
          manifested by brother Kimball, his first Counsellor.
          I do not know what effect their views and sayings have had upon
          your minds, but I am under the impression that there is more
          blindness and stupidity, more fog and darkness in Israel than I
          had anticipated, previous to their remarks.
          I am aware that persons, not members of our society, listening to
          the teachings from this stand, might infer that we certainly were
          in a very bad state. But when they take into consideration that
          we do not allow any evil, or any kind of wickedness, to grow and
          flourish in the midst of this community, without revealing and
          opposing it, they can then understand the subject more clearly.
          In the United States, generally, and perhaps in most of Europe,
          it would not be safe to speak so plainly from the pulpit
          concerning the wickedness existing in those regions, or to expose
          it so freely and fully as we expose, from this stand, the evils
          striving to creep into our midst, for the spirit which reigns
          abroad upon the face of the earth is different from the spirit
          that reigns here. If we know a wicked man we feel free to present
          him before the public, and frequently call him by name, and
          expose him publicly.
          This course would not always be safe, in that portion of the
          southern States where I have travelled; you would be apt to be
          involved in a duel, or in a fight of some kind.
          When the Latter-day Saints know of wickedness, they are
          determined to expose it and bring it to the light, and that which
          should be made public, they proclaim publicly, even though it may
          have been learned secretly.
          I am satisfied of the blindness that exists in many of those whom
          we call upon to officiate, in different capacities in the Church.
          The High Council have been referred to to-day as among the number
          who are in the fog. The reason why I verily believe that they are
          in the fog, is because the light of the Holy Ghost which is in
          our President tells us the fact, and faith comes by hearing the
          word of God.
          The reason why I especially and particularly believe that our
          Bishops are in the dark, is from the fact that the manifestations
          of the Almighty through the President of the Church reveals that
          fact to the people, and he gives us that revelation without
          making any special reserve therein, hence my faith.
          If I had no other evidence, his testimony would be sufficient for
          me to predicate my faith upon.
          The President's remarks gave a very special rebuke to certain
          councils, and, more or less, to those who speak from this stand.
          He is not fond of the smoothness that some are delighted with. I
          am aware that the Saints come here to listen, and that many of
          them are fond of smooth sayings and nicely turned periods, being
          pleased therewith as with a beautiful song; their ears are
          tickled and their fancies excited, but they go away without being
          vitally benefited.
          We have to deal with the people of God, and we care but little
          about the ebbing and flowing of nations, when their ebbings and
          flowings do not particularly affect the Saints of the Most High.
          We expect to see abominations and commotions abroad on the earth,
          but I do hope that the time has actually come when filth will be
          cleansed from the midst of Israel.
          As a people we are right in principle, in doctrine, and in
          precepts. But are we all perfectly right in practice? This is a
          question which we should well examine and understand. 
          Do all the people practise righteousness? Do they all live their
          religion, and the principles that they have received? In other
          words, do all the people act according to what they understand?
          Do they do the best they know how? If they were all doing the
          best they know how, there would be no fault found with them; but
          I am satisfied that they are not, for if they were, the President
          would not stand up here and rebuke you . You are rebuked because
          you suffer yourselves to be led by the enemy into the fog,
          because the Spirit of God and the light of the Holy Ghost are not
          at all times upon you.
          Last Sunday, the President chastised some of the Apostles and
          Bishops who were on the grand jury. Did he fully succeed in
          clearing away the fog which surrounded them, and in removing
          blindness from their eyes? No, for they could go to their room
          and again disagree, though, to their credit, it must be admitted
          that a brief explanation made them unanimous in their action.
          Not long ago I heard that, in a certain case, the traverse jury
          were eleven against one, and what is more singular, the one alone
          was right in his views of the case.
          Several had got into the fog to suck and eat the filth of a
          Gentile law court, ostensibly a court of Utah, though I call it a
          Gentile court. Why? Because it does not magnify the laws of Utah,
          as provided for in the "Organic Act," by which "Act" and laws it
          alone exists as a court."
               A brief examination will soon convince a person, of only
          ordinary observation, that the laws of Utah are not administered
          in our courts, and that the judges must know that fact, and that
          they have been seeking from the first, with but few exceptions,
          to overrule them.
          Whether that course is prompted from the City of Washington, I
          know not. Our laws have been set at naught and walked under foot,
          and in lieu thereof a constant effort has been made to rule in
          common law, English law, and law after law totally inapplicable.
          Do you suppose I respect persons who so conduct themselves? No, I
          do not. We have some Gentiles here whom I respect. We had a
          Shaver whom I respected; he was a man, and a true Virginian, well
          represented the chivalric spirit of the South, and sought the
          good of his country.
          But when we have a set of politicians here, who can blow hot or
          cold to suit their own convenience, they can officiate as
          constables, jurors, marshals, judges, and legislators; they can
          turn the law, create the law, and execute the law to suite
          themselves. Do I respect them? No, and I am in hopes that some of
          their friends present will tell them so. (Voice, I do not know
          that they have any.)
          They act as though they took it for granted that we were a set of
          ignoramuses, unacquainted with the usages of courts, and unaware
          that they were setting aside our laws. They have sought to
          overthrow our laws, when there is not a law in force in Utah that
          will sanction their rulings, and you cannot bring an upright
          lawyer, one who actually understands his profession, but what
          will say that I am right. Every man who is conversant with the
          laws of the United States and of Utah, will say so.
          We do not find fault with the laws of our country, they are good,
          but we deprecate the acts of men who strive to trample upon them;
          men who are filled with the Gentile leaven, and we dislike that
          leaven and the fog which accompanies it.
          We have a few whoremasters here. Do you wish to know who they
          are? I can tell the first letters of their name, and I can tell
          where they have been practising their abominations in this City.
          And even some who profess to be "Mormons" are guilty of enticing
          and leading girls to prostitution, saying, "If you want a new
          dress you can get it very easily."
          I have a gun and dirks in good order, and powder and lead, and am
          ready and able to make holes through such miserable, corrupting
          rascals. These characters take "Mormon" girls and debauch them,
          telling them that the United States will send their troops here,
          and that this people will be broken up and driven.
          We are a part of the United States ourselves; most of us were
          raised in America, and we are all cradled in liberty, and if the
          United States desires to drench the earth with our blood, we are
          on hand.
          Who is afraid to die? None but the wicked. If they want to send
          troops here let them come to those who have imparted filth and
          whores, though we can attend to that class without so much
          expense to the General Government; we can wipe them out cheaply
          and quickly, for they are only a few in number.
          They will threaten us with the U. S. troops! Why your impudence
          and ignorance would bring a blush to the cheeks of the veriest
          camp follower among them. We ask no odds of you, you rotten
          carcasses, and I am not going to bow one hair's breadth to your
          influence. I would rather be cut into inch pieces than succumb
          one particle to such filthiness.
          I want the Gentiles to understand that we know all about their
          whoredoms and other abominations here. If we have not invariably
          killed such corrupt scoundrels, those who will seek to corrupt
          and pollute our community, I swear to you that we mean to, and to
          accomplish more in a few hours, towards clearing the atmosphere,
          than all your grand and traverse juries can in a year.
          There are a few professed "Mormons" who, for a few dimes, wink at
          their iniquities, and keep the poor, mean, lazy scamps in their
          houses, saying, "O, they are honorable men." I admit that there
          are a few honorable men here who are not in the Church, some of
          whom I respect much.
          This eternal threatening of us with the armies of the United
          States! I wonder what men think we are made of, when they
          threaten us! As if they expected that we were going to succumb to
          whoredom! If we were to establish a whorehouse on every corner of
          our streets, as in nearly all other cities outside of Utah,
          either by law or otherwise, we should doubtless then be
          considered good fellows.
          If we were to allow gambling, drunkenness, and every species of
          wickedness, the "Mormons" would then be all right, they would not
          then threaten us with the armies of the United States. O no.
          What is it that maddens the devils? Simply that we are determined
          to do right, and to set at defiance wickedness and wicked men,
          and to send them to hell across lots, as quick as we can.
          I do not ask any odds of them myself, I never have. If they
          behave themselves as white men ought to behave, we will treat
          them as such.
          The armies of our nation will have plenty to do without attending
          to us; they will need us to help them. Yes, instead of bringing
          their armies to fight the people in Utah, they will need Utah's
          armies to help them. They are threatening war in Kansas on the
          slavery question, and the General Government has already been
          called upon to send troops there. Well, all I have to say on that
          matter is, "Success to both parties.
          And in relation to the election of a Speaker in the House of
          Representatives at Washington, the North and South, the East and
          West have each other by the ears; "Success to all parties," say
          To send men here as spies to watch us! Curse the spies and those
          who send them, and all who sustain the system of whorehouses and
          the debauchery of the innocent and unsuspecting, and all who
          threaten that the United States are going to drive and kill the
          Did you ever hear such a man as Judge Shaver threaten us with the
          United States? Did you ever hear Judge Reed do such a thing? No.
          Or Millard Fillmore, or Andrew Jackson? No, such men would scorn
          to threaten an innocent people with the armies of the nation.
          Have we been disloyal to our country? Have we, in one instance,
          violated her laws? No. Have we rejected her institutions? No. We
          are lawful and loyal citizens of the government of the United
          States, and a few poor, miserable, pusillanimous, rotten,
          stinking rebels, come here and threaten us with the armies of the
          United States. We wish all such characters to understand that, if
          the generals and armies and those who wish to send them, are as
          corrupt as those who threaten us, and as vile as most of those
          heretofore sent here, we defy them, and the sooner we come in
          contact with them the better. These are my feelings every time,
          on that point.
          As for you miserable, sleepy "Mormons," who say to those
          wretches, "Give us your dimes, and you shall have our wheat, and
          our daughters, only give us your dimes and you shall have this,
          that, and the other." I not only wish but pray, in the name of
          Israel's God, that the time was come in which to unsheath the
          sword, like Moroni of old, and to cleanse the inside of the
          platter, and we would not wait for the decision of grand or
          traverse juries, but we would walk into you and completely use up
          every curse who will not do right.
          We are speaking against none who are good, they have our
          protection; but against those who are evil. We have many good
          friends who are not members of our Church, but when men come and
          threaten us with the armies of the United States, and under that
          color seek to practise every kind of debauchery, telling a young
          girl that "we are going to be destroyed, and for that reason she
          had better forsake the Mormon Church and make merchandise of her
          body," to serve their vile purposes, poor, miserable devils, what
          ought you to expect?
          I wish the Saints to see and understand men and things as they
          are, if they have any judgment and eye sight. I could give you a
          list of the practices I have been speaking of, and of the names
          of the men engaged in them. If we love salvation and liberty, and
          must fight for them, let us fight, and they will find that the
          "Mormons" are on hand to die, those who are right, and what would
          be the use of living, if we cannot have our rights? If we are to
          be driven, as we have hitherto been, the sooner we die the
          better; and the sooner we kill a poor set of miserable devils the
          better for those who remain.
          I wish all the Saints to do right, and as for those who do not,
          my prayer is, "That they may all go hellwards, the way Ward's
          ducks went."
          May God bless those who do right, and enable them to break in
          pieces wickedness and put it down, that we may be saved; I ask it
          in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, February 24, 1856
                          Brigham Young, February 24, 1856
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the
                      Great Salt Lake City, February 24, 1856.
          So far as I am a judge of the true spirit of the Gospel, I think
          that we have had that spirit manifested this morning, by brother
          Joseph Hovey, in his expression of his feelings, and that too in
          his own natural way. He is a blacksmith, carpenter stone cutter,
          wood chopper; or anything else within his power, the particular
          channel of his operations depending entirely upon counsel. Some
          of the brethren present are no doubt apprised of the mission
          which brother Hovey has been engaged in during this present
          winter; they may also be apprised that his course was found fault
          with when he was in the county of Utah, and more especially while
          in a place called Payson. While I was in Fillmore the brethren
          wrote to me concerning the doings and sayings of brother Hovey,
          and in searching to know the ground of the complaint against him,
          I learned that it amounted to simply this--"If brother Hovey is
          let alone, the people will confess their sins."
          I wrote back to them, inquiring whether they thought there was
          any danger of any persons confessing to more sin than he was
          guilty of; that if they could find out that any had confessed to
          more stealing, swearing, lying, and swindling, than they were
          really guilty of, it would be well to give brother Hovey a word
          of caution, and to tell him to hold up a little and not cause the
          innocent to belie themselves. At the same time I said, that I
          thought there was not much danger of that, and that they might go
          on in that course for some time longer, and not then have made
          all the confessions that they ought to.
          I asked brother Hovey to preach to-day, and to frankly express
          his feelings as they really existed, that I might have a chance
          to understand some of his "Mormonism." I wish to see the Elders
          get up here and manifest their spirits, and speak as they feel
          when they are alone in their meditations. Let us know how you
          feel, and what you think. We can form some kind of an idea how a
          man feels by looking at him, but if you wish a man to portray
          himself faithfully you must get him to talk, and I will insure
          that the organs of speech will show out the true state of the
          mind, sooner or later, and reveal the fruit of his heart. No man
          can hide it if he is allowed to talk; he will be sure to manifest
          his true feelings.
          Brother Hovey has referred to several incidents in his
          experience. I will refer to what I witnessed no longer ago than
          yesterday, in the court-room. A lawyer rose to make his plea
          before the jury; he took up the laws of Utah, which are strict
          and pointed in reference to lawyers making pleas, binding them to
          fairly array the facts in the case, whether they are for or
          against their clients, and he was so serious, so religious, so
          pious, and so honest, that he appealed to high heaven to witness
          his honesty before the jury. When he had induced the jury to
          believe that he was honest, he stood there and misrepresented the
          merits of the case, for half an hour at a stretch, in regular
          lawyer style.
          Men will portray what is in their hearts, when they talk freely,
          and they cannot keep from it. This is the way in which the Lord
          will exhibit the hearts of the children of men. Will He take out
          their hearts and show them to the people? No, for that would not
          exhibit the fruit of their hearts; but He will draw them into
          circumstances which will compel them to manifest what is in them.
          Let a man rise up here and talk, and freely express his thoughts,
          and you can judge of what spirit he is.
          We have just heard the words which give a manifestation of the
          spirit of one of our missionaries, and I say now, as I have said
          before, I wish we had hundreds of such missionaries throughout
          this Territory, preaching to the people, and firing up their
          hearts with the spirit of honesty, so that they would entirely
          quit pilfering, lying, and deceiving, and deal honestly with one
          another, with themselves, and with their God, and be industrious
          and prudent, and pay attention to their business, instead of
          loafing about the streets. I wish we had one hundred such
          missionaries in this city, to get up prayer meetings, preaching
          meetings, and evening meetings in every ward. What for? To draw
          away that filthy, nasty mess which assembles at the corner of
          this public square. For a week or two past, that court-house has
          been thronged with men, and it is darker than the bowels of hell.
          If you ask me how I know, I answer, I have been there and seen
          for myself; have understood how they felt and tried the spirits,
          and I saw who were there. It is a shame for men to be found
          loafing about in such places, where there is contention, and
          quarrelling, and every stratagem that can be used to deceive
          juries and witnesses, and lying before them with all the grace
          and sanctity of a Saint, pretending to be one. Such a place is
          darker to me than midnight darkness.
          There is not a jury which has occupied seats in that court-house
          that comprehends the full scope of truth; they are put there and
          then their minds are beclouded, dust is thrown into their eyes,
          and they do not fully know truth from error, light from darkness,
          what is of God from what is not of God.
          As I have already said, a lawyer commenced his plea yesterday, by
          appealing to high heaven to witness his honesty before the jury,
          and this he did to decoy their feelings, to throw them off their
          guard, and in all this he was true to his client, in accordance
          with the approved mode of the Gentiles. He has been a Gentile
          lawyer for many years before he entered this Church, and
          therefore I do not think that he really merits such severe
          censure as he otherwise would for taking the Gentile shoot so
          faithfully, as the strong power of tradition and habit still
          enfolds him. Instead of setting before the jury the true merits
          of the case, and nothing else, he never touched upon them, but
          avoided them at every turn and threw dust in their eyes, that
          they might give an unrighteous decision.
          Elders of Israel also throng such a place, and that too when no
          spirit reigns there but the devil's spirit, and unless enough
          righteous Elders go in to purify the atmosphere and overbalance
          the power of evil, you can get nothing from that den but the
          principles of hell. There is not a righteous person, in this
          community, who will have difficulties that cannot be settled by
          arbitrators, the Bishop's Court, the High Council, or by the 12
          Referees (as provided in Resolution No. 4, page 390 of Utah
          Laws), far better and more satisfactorily than to contend with
          each other in law courts, which directly tends to destroy the
          best interests of the community, and to lead scores of men away
          from their duties, as good and industrious citizens. Take from
          one to two hundred men and detain them in a court room week after
          week, just look at it!! How many men have been detained at that
          court-house during the past week? Will a hundred fill the number?
          No. Will the time of one hundred and fifty men, for the past six
          days, indemnify this community for the wasted time that has been
          spent there in trying to decide one case, that any boy 15 years
          old, possessed of good common sense, and having the spirit of
          truth within him, could have decided in one hour? I tell you that
          the time of one hundred and fifty men, for six days, will not
          supply the loss to this community which has been incurred to
          satisfy the lustful, wicked, cursed, hellish appetites of
          professed brethren, in striving to cheat their neighbors, by
          employing lawyers to deceive or lie for them, which are
          synonymous terms in the eyes of justice, and by bringing in
          witnesses to screen the guilty and deceive a jury, whereby they
          are liable to give a wrong verdict.
          I am making these remarks for your benefit, if you will be
          benefitted by them. I tell you that a cricket war, a grasshopper
          war, or an Indian war, would not begin to be so direful as what
          you would have to pass through, were it not for your ignorance.
          If you are wilfully ignorant you will have to feel the lash, but
          if you are innocently ignorant, and do the best you know how, you
          may be excused.
          Does the Lord love your conduct when you drag each other before
          the ungodly? When you run after difficulties, contentions,
          broils, and strifes? Do you think He has fellowship with your
          conduct in such things? No, you do not. Do you suppose that Jesus
          Christ has? No. Do you believe that angels and good men can
          fellowship your conduct? You do not, for one moment. There is not
          a man or woman in this house, whether Saint or sinner, Jew or
          Gentile, bond or free, black or white, that can so believe for a
          Do you believe that your consciences can be clear in the day of
          retribution, if you spend your time for naught, and run after the
          filthiness of the wicked? Do you believe that, in so doing, you
          can stand in the great day of account with a clear conscience?
          You cannot. Then why, in the name of common sense, do you tag
          after the devil and his imps?
          Old grey-headed men, who ought to be fathers in Israel, were
          empaneled as a jury on the case I have alluded to, and what were
          they after? The fog, the froth, and spawn of hell, and they feast
          upon it, men who do not know their right hands from their left,
          with regard to the influences of the Spirit of God. Might they
          not have known better? Yes, if they had taken the course which
          Joseph Hovey has taken. If they would walk humbly before God and
          know His will, they would go to work and get stone and timber,
          and work at repairing their fences preparatory to raising grain,
          potatoes, and other articles of food, instead of following after
          courts and the nonsense, wickedness, and lying associated with
          Do I say that lying is practised in those places? Yes, often from
          beginning to end. Men will take a solemn oath that they will tell
          the truth, in the name of Israel's God, and nothing but the
          truth, and then, if they have a prejudice against Mr. A or B,
          they will tell their story to suit themselves, and if possible
          crush an innocent person. The juries are liable to be deceived,
          where there is so much darkness, and the whole posse will go to
          hell, and I will say it in the name of Jesus Christ.
          You men who follow after such a course of things as I refer to, I
          would not give the ashes of a rye straw for the whole of you,
          jurymen, witnesses, and every other person who countenances such
          a place. It is a cage of unclean birds, a den and kitchen of the
          devil, prepared for hell, and I am going to warn you of it. Some
          of you wondered why I sent Thomas Bullock to take your names; I
          wanted to know the men who were coaxing hell into our midst, for
          I wish to send them to China, to the East Indies, or to where
          they cannot get back, at least for five years. Who do we wish to
          stay at home? Such men as Joseph Hovey, men who will pay
          attention to making fences, tilling the soil, and providing for
          their families, those who will live their religion at home. But
          we will send off the poor curses on a mission, and then the devil
          may have them, and we do not care how soon they apostatize, after
          they get as far as California.
          You may think my remarks are severe upon the lawyers here, but
          the most of them take a course which is highly censurable, and
          you may see grey headed men running after them, and asking, "Can
          you call me up as a witness, or put me on the jury?"--in order
          that they may get a dollar or two. Would I go there for money?
          No. There is not an honest man in this community would go there
          merely for money or would plead law unless it was demanded at his
          hands, by the principles of justice, to prevent the innocent from
          being wronged and abused. No principle would ever lead an honest
          man into a court room, only to preserve the innocent from being
          rode down and destroyed.
               To see professed brethren, old and young, idling away their
          time in and around court-rooms, proves them to have little or no
          love for their religion, and that they care but little about
          their God. I would like to see a strictly honest community, if we
          can have one, and then there would be no differences of opinion
          brought before a Gentile court--never, never! Every difficulty
          would be settled amicably, without ever calling upon a court. I
          am ashamed of many of you; it is a disgrace for men who profess
          to be men of dignity and character--men who have been judges in
          the supreme court of their country, to condescend to the mean,
          low-lied calling of a pettifogger, and miserable tools at that. I
          am ashamed for such persons, their conduct is a disgrace to them,
          and to the name of "Mormon."
          I wish we had in our midst thousands and millions of such men as
          Joseph Hovey I would then bid defiance to all the powers of
          darkness. But while we have hundreds and thousands of men, whom
          we hold in fellowship, who would rather take off their hats and
          scrape their shoes to a servant of the devil, and black his
          boots, I tell you we are in danger.
          Men who love corruption, contention, and broils, and who seek to
          make them, I curse you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ; I
          curse you, and the fruits of your lands shall be smitten with
          mildew, your children shall sicken and die, your cattle shall
          waste away and I pray God to root you out from the society of the
          Saints. To observe such conduct as many lawyers are guilty of,
          stirring up strife among peaceable men, is an outrage upon the
          feelings of every honest, law abiding man. To sit among them is
          like sitting in the depths of hell, for they are as corrupt as
          the bowels of hell, and their hearts are as black as the ace of
          spades. I have known them for years; I know where they were
          begotten and by whom, and how they were brought forth, and the
          history of their lives. They love sin, and roll it under their
          tongues as a sweet morsel, and will creep around like wolves in
          sheep's clothing, and fill their pocket's with the fair earnings
          of their neighbors, and devise every artifice in their power to
          reach the property of the honest, and that is what has caused
          these courts. I say, may God Almighty curse them from this time
          henceforth, and let all the Saints in this house say, Amen [a
          unanimous Amen from 3000 persons resounded through the house] for
          they are a stink in the nostrils of God and angels and in the
          nostrils of every Latter-day Saint in this Territory.
          We have been driven from the face of man into the wilderness, and
          now the poor devils follow us to stir up strife, and to produce
          the spawn of hell, in which they delight to live and upon which
          they feed. And simple ones in this community will beg of them,
          "Cannot I be on the grand jury? Cannot I get a little to do in
          the court?" You are fools; God will never pay you; all the pay
          you will receive will be from the devil, and it will be miserable
          This I say to lawyers and to all who will run after strife, and I
          say it in honesty and soberness before high heaven, before my
          Father in heaven, before Jesus Christ His Son, and before the
          holy angels.
          To see lawyers, as I saw them yesterday, strive to make the jury
          believe them honest, and then throw dust in their eyes, who will
          reward you for this? The devil, when he gets you in deep
          suffering and trouble, for there he will leave you, and say that
          he has no more use for you. You would do better to labor for the
          Lord, and you would get better pay. And the people of this
          Territory will make money by paying their honest debts, and gain
          property and be blessed in their basket and in their store, in
          their fields and in their crops, in their flocks and herds, in
          their wives and children, while the withering touch of the
          Almighty will be upon them if they practise wickedness.
          Keep away from court houses; no decent man will go there unless
          he goes as a witness, or is in some manner compelled to. I know
          that many are obliged to go, but those who creep around to see
          what is going on, let me tell you, the devil has possession of
          them. I wish such persons to go to California, if they wish to. I
          counsel you to keep away from courts, we have got the names of
          those who have attended that court room, and we will send those
          characters on long missions, for we want to get rid of them, and
          we do not care whether they apostatize or not.
          If the world complain of this, say I, if you have not sense
          enough to know the difference between an honest man and a devil,
          you must run the risk of it. I could always discern the
          difference, and if you have not insight enough to know when they
          tell the truth and when they lie, you have to run the same chance
          that we have. People abroad may say, "Why don't you send us all
          good men?" Do you believe them? No, you do not, when we send
          them. We wish them to stay here, only those whom it is necessary
          to have go, but we have no business here for those poor miserable
          devils. I call you miserable, because the Spirit of the Almighty
          has no fellowship for you; your names are written with ours here,
          and also in the Lamb's book of life, as I have often told you,
          where they will remain until you sin against the Holy Ghost.
          Angels have no fellowship for you, neither have I. Now go and
          prove yourselves, and if you desire to be Saints you have an
          opportunity. Were it not for your ignorance, there would be a
          severing between the righteous and the wicked. I would not endure
          what I am obliged to endure, whether I am righteous or not, I
          would make a scattering among this people, and make the wicked
          leave forthwith.
          I wanted to give you this brief exhortation. You may say that I
          have talked rather hard, but I do not care what you say about it,
          not one particle. I will tell you what I think about the matter,
          if you do not stop your wickedness we will lay judgment to the
          line and righteousness to the plummet, and I tell you that the
          hailstorm that will be around you will sweep away the refuge of
          lies and all liars.
          I am not afraid of all hell nor of all the world, in laying
          judgment to the line, when the Lord says so. Now, then, behave
          yourselves, you old gray-headed know nothings, you are doted; you
          are--shall I say hardshells? No, you are poor old soft shell
          fogies, that a few pounds of tea and sugar will buy.
          I feel as ready as any man to honor gray hairs, but I also
          believe in the old proverb which reads that "a wise child is
          better than an old and foolish king." We do not want any such men
          to go to courts. When they want you to sit on a jury, tell them
          to judge the case themselves, and you keep away and mind your own
          business. Let me ask you, is there a man obliged to go into court
          and sit on a jury? No. Our law will not oblige him to do it, only
          on certain conditions. You can get rid of doing so, you are there
          because you love to be there. You suck down the drink that is
          there, eat the food that is there, and sup the broth that is
          there, because it is of hell and you like it better than you do
          the Saints, and the sustenance of the Saints. May god bless the
          honest in heart, and separate the wicked and unrighteous from
          them, and curse the latter class from this time henceforth. Amen.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, February 24, 1856
                         Heber C. Kimball, February 24, 1856
                       HAND--ELDERS CALLED TO GO ON MISSIONS.
           Remarks by President Heber C. Kimball, Made in the Tabernacle,
                      Great Salt Lake City, February 24, 1856.
          I do not suppose that any good Saint is tried one particle, by
          the plainness of the remarks just made by brother Brigham.
          As to the principles just advanced by brother Joseph Hovey, and
          by bother Brigham, they are God's truth, and I know that the
          curse will be fulfilled upon every character that it applies to,
          if they do not repent and turn from their sins, and that
          I can say, with all my heart, may God grant that these words may
          be fulfilled, and I know they will. I will stand by him in these
          things, yea, I will stand by the going forth of righteousness
          until there is not a drop of blood left in my veins, if need be,
          and so will every honest, upright, good son of God.
          I am disgusted myself with the evil practices which have just
          been spoken of. Day before yesterday was the first time that I
          have been into a court, for between 25 and 30 years. Did I stay
          there long? No. I said to brother Brigham I want to go and see
          about the missionaries, because my spirit was not there, it don't
          dwell there. Still I would not have left if he had not, for I
          feel perfectly willing to go where he goes. These are my
          feelings, and have been all the time.
          When I see evil spirits working and operating, as I have seen
          many times, I feel like severing the good from bad, for this
          people have been broken up and robbed, and our Prophets,
          Patriarchs, and brethren have been slain, through letting such
          spirits work in our midst, like the leaven of the devil, until
          the whole lump becomes leavened with them. I say clear out evil
          in the start, and sever the bitter branches from the tree, as
          fast as wisdom will permit.
          These are my feelings, and, if you do not listen to the warning
          voice, not, many days will pass before it will be done, and it
          will not be allowable to introduce into the kingdom that which is
          against its order, for there is order in the Church of God.
          The Elders of Israel, in all their meetings and speeches, say,
          they are willing to do whatsoever they are called upon to do, by
          the authorities of this Church. As some missionaries are wanted,
          we are now ready to test whether you are willing or not; and when
          a man is appointed to take a mission, unless he has a just and
          honorable reason for not going, if he does not go he will be
          severed from the Church. Why? Because you said, you were willing
          to be passive, and if you are not passive, that lump of clay must
          be cut off from the wheel and laid aside, and a lump put on that
          will be passive.
          That is my doctrine, and it is the doctrine of Christ and of the
          Father. The Lord's servant is here to guide, dictate, and advise
          you what course to take, that he may mould and fashion you into
          the image and likeness of the Son of God. 
          I will present to this congregation the names of those whom we
          have selected to go on missions. Some are appointed to go to
          Europe, Australia, and the East Indies, and several will be sent
          to Las Vegas, to the North, and to Fort Supply, to strengthen
          those settlements.
          We wish to have those who are appointed to go to the Vegas and
          Fort Supply, immediately begin to gather up their effects, and
          prepare to take a portion of their families with them, or all if
          they choose, though where a family is large it will be better to
          take only a part, and go as soon as the weather will permit.
          I mention these things that you may not misunderstand, that you
          may go to work, without running to brother Brigham and to brother
          Grant every moment. Those who go north are requested not to take
          their families, but gather up their teams, seeds, etc., and go as
          soon as practicable. I believe that is all.
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Brigham
          Young, March 16, 1856
                            Brigham Young, March 16, 1856
                          AND LABOR TO BE BLENDED TOGETHER. 
              A Discourse by President Brigham Young, Delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 16, 1856.
          I do not now rise expressly for the purpose of giving additional
          instructions, for we have already heard much to-day; still, I
          have a few reflections which I will offer. Can you not remember
          hearing public speakers, both here and in other countries, use
          many words without clearly and distinctly conveying ideas? 
          The discourse by brother Vernon, in the forenoon, quite delighted
          me. I was extremely well pleased to hear him clothe his ideas
          with such beautiful language, and so easily understood. Hence, I
          exhort my brethren, the Elders, when they rise to teach, edify,
          or instruct the people, not to hamper themselves with efforts to
          merely select nice sounding words, but to deal out correct and
          useful ideas, even if you do not use one word in ten in a way
          that the learned would deem proper. If a speaker presents useful
          ideas to a congregation of the best scholars in existence, though
          not one word of his language is strictly proper, yet what he says
          will feed that congregation, far more than will a perfect volume
          of nice sounding words which convey few or no important ideas. I
          will leave the correctness of this remark to philosophers of
          every grade.
          Still, when any one rises to speak, if his mind is stored with
          valuable ideas, let him clothe his thoughts with the best
          language he can command--that which comes to him easily and
          naturally. I really wish to impress this idea upon the minds of
          the Elders.
          If you will reflect upon what class of speakers have most edified
          you, no matter whether they are taught or untaught in the
          learning of the schools, you will readily discover that it has
          been those whose minds were stored with good ideas, and who spoke
          so that you could readily and easily understand them, whether
          their language was couched in the most approved style or not.
          When you hear individuals speak whose minds are stored with rich
          ideas, do they not benefit you the most? I care but little about
          your language, hand out the ideas, and let us know what you have
          stored in your minds.
          I will now refer to a portion of the discourse delivered here
          this afternoon, and say to the Bishops, that it would be highly
          gratifying to me, and to all of us, if you would prove yourselves
          wise stewards. You have a good opportunity to exhibit your
          abilities, and I say to the Bishop who has just addressed us,
          won't you do as I have formerly directed you, and appoint good,
          wise, judicious men to go through your Ward, to find out what is
          in that Ward, and the situation of every family, whether they
          have money, flour, or costly clothing, or whether they are
          destitute and suffering? This is your business and calling. But
          many of our Bishops are sleepy and good for nothing, and if I
          were going to cleanse the Church, knowing the character of
          individuals, I think I should commence with the Bishops. Theirs
          is one of the most laborious and responsible offices in the whole
          Church; it is an office which requires men of the best skill,
          judgment and talent, to fill, and is one of the greatest
          importance. Bishops, will you take hold and try to make men of
          yourselves? After all I have said now and heretofore, if you were
          going to search your Wards, you would be very apt to come to me
          to inquire what you should do. I will tell you, do not let there
          be one place, in the habitations of the Saints in your Wards,
          about which you are uninformed. Brother Wooley has reported the
          circumstance of a Bishop finding a woman who had been living upon
          the charity of her neighbors, and who, at the same time, had
          valuable property, and money hid up. I can refer you to scores of
          like circumstances, and what is more, to some of the Elders,
          those who are supposed to be among the best of our Elders, who
          have been preaching abroad and brought their hundreds into the
          Church, who come here with a lie in their hearts and on their
          tongues, with regard to their means, and declare, emphatically,
          that they have no means to help themselves with, neither money
          nor goods.
          We have brought them here, and they are still owing the Perpetual
          Emigrating Fund for their passage, and they have gold, if they
          have no silver, and have the richest kind of clothing. This
          brings to my mind the circumstance, of a family in Nauvoo, who
          were in the habit of travelling from house to house, begging
          their living, and said, that they were poor and destitute. When
          the time came for us to leave that city, and that family was
          starting to St. Louis, the woman loosed her dress and showed one
          of the sisters her stays, and said, "I have my money sewed up in
          these stays, and the Church won't get it." This woman begged her
          living, and stayed in Nauvoo almost two years, and would rather
          be damned than to part with the sovereigns sewed up in her stays.
          Such people will be damned, and the sooner they leave us the
          Were I a Bishop, I would know to a reasonable degree of accuracy,
          the value of the clothing owned by those in my Ward, who were
          calling upon me for assistance, and I would be familiar with
          every nook and habitation, and watch carefully that money was not
          secreted, and the owners begging from those poorer than
          themselves. I would know whether they had money hoarded, or hid
               A score of years ago the Elders had to be very watchful, and
          I do not suppose that, for many years, I slept so soundly but
          what the slightest tap would wake me up. If any person should
          say, "Brigham!" I am ready at once to ask, "What is wanted?" I am
          ready to jump, at a moment's warning. No person could stir about,
          without our knowing it.
          The Bishops should be equally wide awake, and set those whom they
          have confidence in, those whom they know to be honest, to be
          watchmen on the tower, and let them find out who are suffering.
          Doubtless, there are many who are suffering through want of food,
          but there is no necessity of any family suffering in this City,
          and when this City is supplied, the remainder of the Territory
          may be considered independent.
          I presume that we have one fourth less provisions in this City to
          the number of the inhabitants, than has any other portion of the
          Territory, and yet we need not suffer. Here we need not be
          ashamed to beg, when stern necessity has closed around us. I do
          not expect to see the day when I am perfectly independent, until
          I am crowned in the celestial kingdom of my Father, and made as
          independent as my Father in heaven. I have not yet received my
          inheritance as my own, and I expect to be dependent until I do,
          for all that I have is lent to me.
          If a man comes to me and says, he is out of food, what of that?
          He is out of food, that is all. If a man comes along and says,
          "My family is destitute of food and clothing," what of that?
          Simply that they are destitute of food and clothing, and still
          they may be gentlemen and ladies, for all that, and be honoring
          their tabernacles and being on the earth.
          The customs of the world have made it degrading to ask for food,
          but it is not, when a person cannot honestly procure it in any
          other way. The man who is hungry and destitute has as good a
          right to my food as any other person, and I should feel as happy
          in associating with him, if he had a good heart, as with those
          who have an abundance, or with the princes of the earth. They all
          are esteemed by me, not according to the wealth and position they
          hold, but according to the character they have.
          Bishops, will you try to magnify your calling? I will give you a
          few words of consolation; at our next Conference we expect to
          drop a good many Bishops, and appoint others, and we intend to
          keep doing so, until we get men with good hearts and active
          brains, to fill that responsible station.
          I will now speak upon another subject; one which I have touched
          upon many times, but which, to this day, is but little
          understood. I allude to the organization of the spirit and the
          body, the distinction between the two, and their operations. This
          subject is not well understood, and generally not much reflected
          upon, but is one which the Saints have got to learn, if they ever
          learn the real organization of man. Then they will know and
          understand the peculiarities of our present organization, and how
          liable mankind are to submit to its weaknesses, and to the
          influences of the powers that rule over them.
          Were you in possession of this knowledge, you would be more
          compassionate. As severely as I sometimes talk to you, my soul is
          full of compassion. It has ever been my study to understand
          myself, for by so doing I can understand my neighbors.
          If this people would apply their minds to wisdom, with regard to
          themselves, they would be more compassionate than they are now.
          From what is at times said here, it might be inferred that every
          one who did not walk to the line was at once going to be
          destroyed, but who has been hurt? Who is about to be killed? Who
          is about to be taken out of the way? When this people have lived
          long enough upon the earth, to have the principles of life and
          salvation disseminated among them, and to have their children
          taught in those principles, so that they fully know the
          principles of eternal salvation, then let us or our children turn
          away from the commandments of God, as some do now, and I could
          tell you what will be done with them.
          Brother Wooley has said, the time is not far distant, but it will
          never come until the inhabitants of the earth, and especially
          those who have been gathered together, have a sufficient time to
          be educated in the celestial law, so that each person may
          understand for himself. Then if they transgress against the light
          and knowledge they possess, some will be stoned to death, and
          "judgment will be laid to the line, and righteousness to the
          plummet." But people will never be taken and sacrificed for their
          ignorance, when they have had no opportunity to know and
          understand the truth. Such a proceeding would be contrary to the
          economy of heaven. But after we receive and understand things as
          they are, if we then disobey, we may look for the chastening hand
          of the Almighty.
          If we could learn ourselves, we should see thousands and
          thousands of weaknesses in the people. They turn to the right and
          to the left, to this and that which is wrong; yet if we did know
          and see things as they are, we should understand that thousands
          of those acts are performed in ignorance.
          I presume there are people hearing me talk, who would give the
          riches of the Indies, if they had them in their possession, to be
          able to obtain the mind and will of God concerning themselves.
          They would give all they possess on the earth, or expect to
          possess, were they in possession of keys by which they could know
          the path to walk in. What are we going to do with this class of
          persons? I will tell you what I am going to do with them, so far
          as I am concerned. I am going to give them my faith, confidence,
          prayers, and full fellowship. And when they get through with this
          probation, if they have done, all the time, according to the best
          they knew, God will not hold them responsible for what they did
          not know, and they will be received, through the merits of the
          Son, into the kingdom of our Father.
          I mention this to inform the people, that they may understand
          what they should do with regard to the law of God, and the
          transgression thereof. The law is very strict; and in this
          congregation there are men and women who, with uplifted hands to
          heaven, before the Father, the Son, and all the holy angels, made
          solemn covenants that they never would do thus and so. For
          example, one obligation is, "I will never have anything to do
          with any of the daughters of Eve, unless they are given to me of
          the Lord." Men will call God to witness that they never will
          transgress this law, and promise to live a virtuous life, so far
          as intercourse with females is concerned; but what can you see? A
          year will not pass away before some few of them are guilty of
          creeping into widows' houses, and into bed with the wives of
          their brethren, debauching one woman here, and another there. Do
          we enforce upon them the strict penalty of the law? Not yet. I
          hope their conduct arises from their ignorance, but let me
          transgress my covenant, and the case would be different. I want
          to live as long as I can, on the earth, but I would not like to
          live to violate my covenants; I would rather go behind the vail
          before doing so.
               A few of the men and women who go into the house of the
          Lord, and receive their endowments, and in the most sacred manner
          make covenants before the Almighty, go and violate those
          covenants. Do I have compassion on them? Yes, I do have mercy on
          them, for there is something in their organization which they do
          not understand; and there are but few in this congregation who do
          understand it.
          You say, "That man ought to die for transgressing the law of
          God." Let me suppose a case. Suppose you found your brother in
          bed with your wife, an put a javelin through both of them, you
          would be justified, and they would atone for their sins, and be
          received into the kingdom of God. I would at once do so in such a
          case; and under such circumstances, I have no wife whom I love so
          well that I would not put a javelin through her heart, and I
          would do it with clean hands. But you who trifle with your
          covenants, be careful lest in judging you will be judged.
          Every man and women has got to have clean hands and pure heart,
          to execute judgment, else they had better let the matter alone.
          Again, suppose the parties are not caught in their iniquity, and
          it passes along unnoticed, shall I have compassion on them? Yes,
          I will have compassion on them, for transgressions of the nature
          already named, or for those of any other description. If the Lord
          so order it that they are not caught in the act of their
          iniquity, it is pretty good proof that He is willing for them to
          live; and I say let them live and suffer in the flesh for their
          sins, for they will have it to do.
          There is not a man or woman, who violates the covenants made with
          their God, that will not be required to pay the debt. The blood
          of Christ will never wipe that out, your own blood must atone for
          it; and the judgments of the Almighty will come, sooner or later,
          and every man and woman will have to atone for breaking their
          covenants. To what degree? Will they have to go to hell? They are
          in hell enough now. I do not wish them in a greater hell, when
          their consciences condemn them all the time. Let compassion reign
          in our bosoms. Try to comprehend how weak we are, how we are
          organized, how the spirit and the flesh are continually at war.
          I told you here, some time ago, that the devil who tempted Eve,
          got possession of the earth, and reigns triumphant, has nothing
          to do with influencing our spirits, only through the flesh; that
          is a true doctrine. Inasmuch as our spirits are inseparably
          connected with the flesh, and, inasmuch as the whole tabernacle
          is filled with the spirit which God gave, if the body is
          afflicted, the spirit also suffers, for there is a warfare
          between the flesh and the spirit, and if the flesh overcomes, the
          spirit is brought into bondage, and if the spirit overcomes, the
          body is made free, and then we are free indeed, for we are made
          free by the Son of God. Watch yourselves, and think. As I had
          observed, on the evening of the 14th, at the social Hall, "think,
          brethren, think," but do not think so far that you cannot think
          back again. I then wanted to tell a little anecdote, but I will
          tell it now.
          In the eastern country there was a man who used to go crazy, at
          times, and then come to his senses again. One of his neighbors
          asked him what made him go crazy; he replied, "I get to thinking,
          and thinking, until finally I think so far that I am not always
          able to think back again." Can you think too much for the spirit
          which is put in the tabernacle? You can, and this is a subject
          which I wish the brethren instructed upon, and the people to
          understand. The spirit is the intelligent part of man, and is
          intimately connected with the tabernacle. Let this intelligent
          part labor to excess, and it will eventually overcome the
          tabernacle, the equilibrium will be destroyed, and the whole
          organization deranged. Many people have deranged themselves by
          thinking too much.
          The thinking part is the immortal or invisible portion, and it is
          that which performs the mental labor; then the tabernacle, which
          is formed and organized for that express purpose, brings about or
          effects the result of that mental labor. Let the body work with
          the mind, and let them both labor fairly together, and, with but
          few exceptions, you will have a strong-minded, athletic
          individual, powerful both physically and mentally.
          When you find the thinking faculty perfectly active, in a healthy
          person, it should put the physical organization into active
          operation, and the result of the reflection is carried out, and
          the object is accomplished. In such a person you will see mental
          and physical health and strength combined, in their perfection.
          We have the best opportunity afforded any people to cultivate
          these properties of man.
          I do not know that I am trammeled by tradition, or that any of us
          need to be, hence we are in the best situation to exhibit,
          through the organization of the tabernacle, the labor and
          properties of the invisible part. When a person is thinking all
          the time he is little better than a machine; he perverts the
          purpose of his organization, and injures both mind and body. Why?
          Because the mental labor does not find vent through the organism
          of the tabernacle, and has not that scope--that field of labor
          which it desires, and which it was wisely designed that it should
          have. Think according to your labor, labor according to your
          Some think too much, and should labor more, others labor too
          much, and should think more, and thus maintain an equilibrium
          between the mental and physical members of the individual; then
          you will enjoy health and vigor, will be active, and ready to
          discern truly, and judge quickly. Is it not your privilege to
          have discernment to circumscribe all things, no matter what
          subject comes before you, and to at once know the truth
          concerning any matter? When you see a person of this character,
          you see one with a healthy and vigorous mind, throughout the
          whole operations of organization. True, this is not the privilege
          of every one; some have to do much thinking, and but little
          manual labor, while others do much manual labor with little, if
          any thinking. The latter class are as dull and stupid as the
          brutes, and when their labor is done, they lie down and sleep,
          like the brutes. They do not think enough, they should bring
          their minds into active operation, as well as their bodies. Men
          who do much thinking, philosophers for instance, would apply
          their bodies to more manual labor, in order to make their bodies
          more healthy and their minds more vigorous and active.
          Let me take twenty years to come, in which to build cities,
          temples, tabernacles, halls, dwellings, &c., with my mental
          organization, and not put forth my hands, or use any manual
          labor, to perform any of this work, do you not perceive that my
          body would not have labored during all this period, and that my
          mind would have labored to excess, even to the overcoming of the
          tabernacle. Again, let me build house after house, hall after
          hall, temple after temple, &c., my mind would have something to
          rest upon, and my body being weary with labor, I could lie down,
          and both would rest together. When I wish to build a temple it
          costs me much thought, and when I see a temple finished on this
          block, as I have seen it in the vision of my mind, do you not
          perceive that the whole of the labor of the mind, on that matter,
          is at rest? This is my philosophy on thinking; and if I were
          obliged to think for ten years, and not erect a building, or help
          build up a city, or in any way put my thoughts into execution, it
          would materially injure my mental faculty, through want of
          results for it to rest upon. But let me engage in active
          operations, even though I do not personally perform one day's
          manual labor, let me see the result of my thinking budding into
          existence, and my mind has something to rest upon. If I cannot
          carry out that which is in my mind--that which I wish to
          accomplish in all the improvements, in building up Zion in the
          latter days, as soon as I am deprived of the necessary physical
          labor I withdraw my mind from that object; I will not suffer my
          mind to rest upon it. For instance, we are going to suspend labor
          upon the Temple for a year, until we can prepare ourselves more
          fully for that work. We have abandoned the idea of using adobies
          in the walls of that building, and intend to use granite. Now,
          suppose I should begin to think, and think, and still think about
          it, are you not aware that it would be a worse than useless waste
          of time and mental labor? My body would become wearied and
          languid. I do not expect to think about it for one year; good bye
          to it, for the present. I must carry out the labor of my mind, or
          I injure it. Can you go to sleep in one minute, after you have
          said your prayers and gone to bed? Can you cease reflection, bid
          good bye to thought, and say to the body, compose yourself and
          let us go to sleep? How many now in this house can do that?
          Whether it is natural, or supernatural, mental or mechanical, it
          matters not, but I have trained myself to go to sleep when I get
          ready, and when I am in good health, as a general thing, in about
          one minute I can be fast asleep.
          Until you can govern and control the mind and the body, and bring
          all into subjection to the law of Christ, you have a work to
          perform touching yourselves. I delight to talk upon he subject of
          our organization but I must do so a little at a time, or I might
          weary your bodies and distract your thoughts. Short sermons fitly
          spoken, are better than long ones ill spoken. May God bless you,
          Journal of Discourses / Journal of Discourses, Volume 3 / Heber
          C. Kimball, March 9, 1856
                           Heber C. Kimball, March 9, 1856
             A Discourse by President Heber C. Kimball, Delivered in the
                        Great Salt Lake City, March 9, 1856.
          How is the will of the Father done in the heavens? Every one may
          read in the Bible that when Lucifer rebelled against the Father,
          and against Jesus Christ, His Son, he was cast out of heaven,
          with all those who partook of his spirit.
          Were they not all cast out of heaven? We are praying constantly
          that that may be done on earth, even as it was done in heaven.
          Would you not like to have the day come when those who rally to
          the standard of wickedness, which the devil raises, will be cast
          out; when the Saints may live in peace, and enjoy the comforts of
          life--partake of one spirit, and be one from that time
          henceforth, and for ever? I am praying for that time to come, and
          I believe that God will spare my life until I can have the
          privilege, with thousands of others, of casting corrupt,
          rebellious beings from our midst.
          If I do not live to behold that period, in the flesh, as the Lord
          liveth, I will see and enjoy it in the spirit, and I will help to
          accomplish that work. What, in this body? If not in this body I
          shall in my new one, for I am going to have a new one, when I
          have done my work in this tabernacle which I now possess, and
          which you now see.
          I wish to do my work, and to have it well done, that I may merit
          and purchase, by my faithfulness, a new body which will be after
          the similitude of the body I now have.
          This tabernacle will be laid down, and my spirit will pass
          through the vail, into the world of spirits. I told you, the
          other day, that when you are through with this state of
          existence, your labor is not at an end. The spirit world will
          probably be equal to this, in that respect, and I think a little
          Here we pray that the time will come when the will of the Father
          will be done on earth as in heaven. Did not they cast out the
          devil and all who rallied to his standard? They did.
          I have been much interested with the discourse just delivered by
          brother Wells; it is true. Treasure up the words he has spoken,
          for your salvation depends upon your observing and walking by
          them. You are not all indebted to the Perpetual Emigrating Fund,
          but a good many of you are. That Company is in debt, and who does
          the weight of that debt rest upon? Upon brother Brigham, and upon
          those whom he calls to his assistance. Do you feel interested in
          the welfare of that company? Many of you do not care one dime for
          the P. E. Fund. That is plain language but it is true.
          Is President Young oppressed? He is; and he is perplexed with
          those debts which have been made without his knowledge and
          sanction. It is far easier to contract a debt than it is to pay
          Many of our Elders abroad run the Company into debt. What a sway
          I could have, if I had the privilege of incurring liabilities to
          the amount of fifty, sixty or eighty thousand dollars, and not be
          under obligation to pay one dime of it, but leave our President
          to foot the bill.
          It is just as reasonable for us all to run into debt at these
          stores, and then expect the President to pay our debts. What an
          unwise policy to run the people into debt, beyond the means for
          prompt payment, and that too at a time when we were clear of
          debt, the result of brother Brigham's skillful financiering and
          wise management.
          He foresaw that these hard times were coming, and labored hard
          that we might be independent and not be oppressed, but instead of
          that he is oppressed.
          It is as necessary to talk about this as it is to talk about
          anything else. Why? Because all the poor Saints who are in
          England, France, Denmark, Italy, Asia, or any part of the earth,
          where there is a poor Saint, are dependent upon the P. E. Fund to
          bring them to this country.
          They are paying their means into that Fund, are struggling to
          have an interest in it, and should not you have an interest in
          it? Yes, just as much as they, and have more need to exert
          yourselves if you are indebted to it.
          To say nothing of indebtedness to the Fund, there is not a man or
          woman that professes to be a member in this church, but what
          should be just as much interested and as diligent in this matter,
          as are brother Brigham, brother Heber, brother Grant, or the
          Twelve Apostles. Do you fell so? To all appearance you do not,
          apparently the most you care for is your bread and meat.
          As to the circumstances under which we are placed, I do not
          particularly care, all I care about them is the extra care and
          labor they bring upon me, for I have to keep on the trot to wait
          on the people who come to me for flour and meal, and for this and
          Do they come from the Ward I live in? No, they come from
          different Wards, and some come to beg, some to buy, and some to
          I wish that these matters could be attended to in the Wards where
          they belong. Let each one take what provision he can spare, from
          time to time, whether little or much, to the Bishop of his Ward,
          and let that Bishop and his helps make a righteous distribution
          of that food.
          I do not wish to be placed under the necessity of administering
          to the wants of so many, in addition to the large number I have
          to provide for, neither does brother Brigham; it is too onerous a
          burden, and we have not the provisions.
          Some may think that there is a great supply of wheat, corn,
          barley, &c., now in the Tithing Office. I was there myself, two
          or three weeks ago, and I asked brother Hill to show me all the
          grain there, and the whole amount would not exceed six hundred
          bushels. How long will it take to feed that out? I deal out over
          one thousand pounds every week, and sometimes over fourteen
          hundred pounds.
          What toll has been taken at my mill during the last seven months?
          Not to exceed one bushel a day, on account of the want of water,
          and that does not pay the miller. Brother Brigham's mill does not
          have more than one quarter or one-third the grain it can grind,
          and he has hundreds of persons to support. He has enough to do
          and to think of, to kill any man under God's heaven, unless he
          was supported and upheld by an Almighty power.
          What are my cares? I said sometime since, that my immediate
          family consisted of seventy-nine persons, which I feed, clothe,
          and shelter, and I furnish thirteen fires all the time. This care
          and expense should be borne by the Church, and I, left free to
          attend to the labors more directly pertaining to the Priesthood.
          But, as it is, I now assist many, besides entirely supporting my
          large family. I feed widows and their families, who do not belong
          to me any more than they belong to you.
          Has brother Brigham got a heavier load than I have? Yes, he feeds
          his hundreds, besides aiding other hundreds who do not directly
          belong to his family.
          I wish you Bishops to take some of these loads. I sometimes feel
          as though I could not live, still I get along with those I am
          obliged to feed. There is not a member in my family, with the
          exception of my first wife and my first children, who have ever
          begun to see the hard times that I have seen.
          In my younger days I have seen the time when, for two weeks
          together, we were under the necessity of eating boiled
          milk-weeds, and that too without having to salt them. Have any of
          you come to that yet?
          I have seen the time in Nauvoo, the last time I went to England,
          when I could sit down with my family and eat all we had in the
          house, and then not have half enough. I never was so poor in my
          life as I was then, and I was sickly and afflicted. Was I happy?
          Yes, just as happy as I am now, and just as comfortable in my
          I always felt as thankful when I had not anything as when I had
          plenty; I feel as thankful with a little as I do with ever so
          But I have heard some people say that they could not ask God to
          bless a jonnycake, and feel thankful for it. I could mention many
          such characters, people who are never thankful, only when they
          have an abundance. I am thankful when I have a little; I am
          thankful now, and I never was more so than I am this day, for
          there is a prospect of some people learning a lesson, though I
          doubt very much whether all will.
          Does it make all humble? No, for many are calculating to start
          for California directly. Thank God for that, not a soul of them
          will cause me to shed a tear at their leaving, not even if they
          were members of my own family. Inasmuch as they wish to go, go,
          say I, off with you, there are plenty more where you grew. But
          when you go, do not steal what few cattle we have left.
          Brother Erastus Snow, while in the States, borrowed money to
          assist the P. E. Fund Company. I have some property close to my
          house, on the west side of the street, five, six, or seven
          thousand dollars worth, that I will let any of you have for
          drafts against the Fund. I also have two farms and some cattle
          that I will dispose of for the same kind of pay, and the farms
          have as good soil as you will find in the Territory. 
          I do not wish to let you have my sheep, for I am determined that
          my family shall make their own clothing. I am going to organize a
          domestic manufacturing company, in my own family; we are going to
          make up our own clothing and attend to our own business. Let us
          do this in every family throughout this City, and throughout this
          It is necessary for us to take a course, to put ourselves into a
          situation where we may be as independent in our sphere of action,
          as God is in His. You have heard brother Brigham say, a thousand
          times, that there is nothing we wear, eat, or drink, but what is
          in the elements around us. It is for us to take these elements
          and organize them, and put them into a condition in which we can
          use them.
          I know that there are a great many good people here; the jewels
          of the earth are in this congregation, and in different parts of
          this Territory; they are jewels of the earth, both male and
          female. Some of the meanest of people are here also; on natural
          principles there must needs be an opposition.
          A company of men was selected to go to Las Vegas to strengthen up
          that settlement, and I understand that other men were getting up
          companies for other purposes.
          We wish those who are appointed to go to Las Vegas, to green
          River, and to other places, to go where they are appointed, and
          nowhere else, and not to listen to any man on earth who would
          influence them to go somewhere else, unless they are dictated to
          take a different course by the President of this Church.
          Thomas S. Williams is getting up a company to go on an exploring
          excursion; he proposed doing so, and brother Brigham told him to
          act his own pleasure. It is his own individual proposal and
          affair, and not an appointment by the authorities of this Church.
          I speak of this, that the brethren may not misunderstand the
          We are willing that brother T. S. Williams should explore the
          Colorado regions, the Pimo country, and every part of the earth,
          but those who go with him, go on their own responsibility.
          I am not making these remarks with a view to interfere with his
          operations, but we wish him to understand that we do not intend
          to have him interfere with those who are going to Las Vegas,
          Green River, or any other point to which we are sending brethren.
          You can now understand the matter perfectly, so that you need not
          run to brother Brigham, to me, to brother Grant, or to anybody
          else. When we make an appointment we wish it carried out unless
          it is altered by the proper authority. I think I have said enough
          on that subject, you can now understand it, if you choose to.
          My feelings are, if God blesses and sustains me, to build a good
          storehouse for my grain this season; I am going to lay up
          everything I can raise. I say this for the benefit of brother
          Hunter, and all the Bishops in the House of Israel. Follow the
          example if you think it is a good one, and lay up stores of
          grain, against the time of need, for you will see the time when
          there will not be a kernel raised, and when thousands and
          millions will come to this people for bread. You cannot believe
          it, can you? You may say "If one of the old Prophets could rise
          from the d